Of course there are plenty of reasons to convert to power windows, including the appeal of owning a fully loaded car, or just looking cool in general. Beyond the convenience factor, installing power windows into a car that’s almost half a century old can help eliminate a few hurdles.
Using our ’64 Chevelle two-door hardtop—a car that came to us with the doors half-gutted—as an example, we can offer the first tip. Try to start with an intact door complete with all of its innards. Intact means all of the parts you’ll need to reuse are in place, and factory adjustments can be marked and noted before disassembly. Otherwise you’ll be playing the “try to figure it out game.” If so, don’t worry, the game’s instructions can be found in either a parts or shop manual, we used both. The next tip is: Don’t buy junk—by junk, we mean inferior parts that don’t fit and aren’t worth the labor to put them in. Some excellent power window kits are on the market, and Electric-Life is one of the brands that offers a high-quality system. For our ’64 Chevelle we installed Electric-Life’s GM87-K kit engineered to fit ’64-67 Chevelles and El Caminos. The kit comes with minimal instructions, but it does mention the three different positions for adjusting the down stop. We unscrewed the bolt, and placed it at the top position.
Remember it’s always a good idea to test one’s progress as a project moves along. It’s that old check twice, install once philosophy. For instance we ran 12V juice to the window motors to ensure the windows operated properly (up and down) before we installed the door panels. Also it’s a good idea one knows for sure what they’ve identified as up and down in the wiring, and making sure the switch isn’t reversed.
Before you begin to pull everything apart, be sure to mark the factory adjustment, and you should do just fine. Another thing, should the windows flunk the garden hose test after you’ve completed the job, don’t worry, these cars tend to be a little tough to get the correct fit the first time. It might take a little tinkering, but you will get things to seal up.