Seat Motor Disassembly and Repair

awesomeissquid

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Jul 1, 2020
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Bay Area, CA
Since I purchased my 100 series, one of the four seat motors was just not working. Sometimes when the button was pressed it would move for a second, but then freeze up and stop. I did some searching but it did not seem there were many posts on the topic so I wanted to provide a breakdown of my process to investigate and hopefully fix this issue.

All the other seat motors were functioning so I knew I had power. To confirm there wasn't something askew with that individual wiring I started by unbolting the seat from the four feet which connect to the floor. With it unbolted, I carefully lifted and leaned the seat back so it was resting on the 2nd row seats. Be careful when you are doing this as there is a power cable that connects to the seat bottom. Once I had access to the motors, I switched the power cable from the motor in question with another (they all use the same connector) and verified the same functionality between those two.

Since I had narrowed down the issue to the individual motor, I went ahead and removed it. This is done by disconnecting the wiring, unscrewing the motor from the seat mount, and then snaking the flexible drive shaft out of the motor. The drive shaft has a square key on the end that aligns with the motor. It is not held together within the motor with anything so it pulls right apart. Then the motor goes inside for disassembly.

I started the disassembly by putting the motor in a bench clamp with the plastic end of the motor housing facing up.

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You will notice three metal tabs that are bent over the top of the plastic. Carefully, use something to pry them back and our of the way. I had the best luck starting with a screwdriver and then using a pair of needle nose pliers. It should look something like this:

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With the tabs out of the way, the top plastic housing will pull off the end of the motor exposing the brushes and the motor commutator.

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I continued with the disassembly, but at this step I found one of the brushes was a little locked up and not making great contact. With the top plastic brush holder/cover out of the way the commutator pulls out of the motor housing.

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I used some fine sandpaper to lightly clean the brush contact area. You will want to make sure you evenly clean around the entire contact area and don't stay in one stop too long since you could make it out of round. There really is not too much going on within this end of the motor, so that was reinserted into the motor housing.

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Next up, I removed the brushes and cleaned the area a little bit to ensure they could move smoothly.

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Finally, it was time for reassembly. Slide the brushes back into their holders and carefully slide the plastic cover/bush holder onto the end of the motor commutator. You will need to use something to press the brushes back into their holder to slide the assembly together enough. This was probably the hardest part of the process. I ended up having the best luck with two tiny screwdrivers.

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With everything back together, the last step is to re-secure the metal tabs to hold the plastic end cap on the motor assembly. For this, I found the best luck with a pair of adjustable pipe clamps.

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Finally, with everything assembled, it was back to the truck. Before putting the seat fully back together, I went ahead and plugged the motor in to test that it now worked, and it did! Happy with my results, everything was reassembly, and it has been operating since. Hope this helps someone else who has a similar issue.
 

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