How to Replace Windows on a Chevrolet Nova


The Chevrolet Nova name refers to a compact car produced from 1962 to 1979 and a subcompact car produced from 1985 to 1988. General Motors produced both vehicles. If you own a Nova and a window is broken, you must remove the interior door panel to replace it. On older vehicles where the window glass is badly scratched, replacing the window glass will greatly enhance visibility for the driver.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • GM window crank tool
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Wide, flat paint scrapper
  • Wrench set
  • Masking tape

Removing the Interior Door Panel

  • Remove the trim bezel that surrounds the inside door handle on your Nova. A small screw retains the bezel; use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the screw. Then pull the bezel from the interior door panel.

  • Use a GM window crank removal tool to remove the window crank handle. Align the tool with the handle, and slide the tool between the handle and the door panel. This will disengage the steel retaining clip and allow you to pull the handle off the regulator shaft.

  • Remove the armrest. Its retaining bolts will be concealed under small trim pieces along the inboard face of the armrest. Pry these off with a flat-head screwdriver. Then pull out the retaining bolts and remove the armrest.

  • If your Nova is equipped with remote control mirrors, you must remove the plastic trim piece that houses the control knob. Using a Phillips screwdriver, pull out the singe screw that retains the trim piece, and remove the trim piece.

  • Remove the interior door panel. Hidden plastic clips retain the door panel. Insert a wide, flat paint scrapper between the interior door panel and the steel door frame. Side the paint scrapper around the door frame until you contact one of the clips. Pull straight out, away from the door frame, to disengage the plastic clip from the door frame. Continue around the door until all the clips are disengaged. Then lift the door panel straight up to separate the top of the panel from the door, and remove it from the Nova.

Removing the Door Glass

  • Carefully remove the plastic water deflector shield, which is held in place with tape. Simply pull it off; but be careful not to tear it.

  • Lower the window fully.

  • Remove the weatherstripping from around the window by prying it out with the flat-head screwdriver.

  • Use a wrench to remove the bolt that connects the window regulator arm to the steel glass channel attached to the bottom of the window glass.

  • Carefully lift the glass up through the window opening, and remove it from the car.

Installing the New Door Glass

  • Slide the steel glass channel off the old window and onto the new window.

  • Carefully slide the new window into the opening at the top of the door.

  • Reinstall the bolt that connects the window regulator arm to the steel glass channel.

  • Reinstall the weatherstripping around the window opening by carefully pressing it into the channel in the window frame.

  • Reinstall the plastic water deflector shield. Use masking tape to secure it to the door frame.

Reinstalling the Interior Door Panel

  • Lower the interior door panel into position over the door. Make sure the tab at the top of the interior door panel engages the groove on the inside of the door at the bottom of the window opening.

  • Use the palm of your hand to press the plastic clips into the holes in the door frame. Continue around the interior until all the clips are pressed in.

  • Reinstall the plastic trim piece that houses the remote mirror control knob. Lift the trim piece into position, and reinstall the screw that retains it.

  • Lift the armrest into position, and reinstall the three screws that retain it. Then press the screw covers into the armrest.

  • Reinstall the window crank by pressing it onto the regulator shaft.

  • Slide the trim bezel into position around the interior door handle, and then reinstall the screw that retains it.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check the condition of the weatherstripping, and replace it as necessary. Leaking weatherstripping can cause severe rust damage to the body of your Nova.
  • Be especially careful when working on a vehicle in which the window was broken. Glass shards or fragments left inside the door panel could cut you.

Related Searches


  • "Chilton GM Nova/Chevy II 1962-1979 Repair Manual"; The Nichols Chilton Editors; 1997
  • "Chilton's General Motors Chevrolet Nova/Geo Prism 1985-93 Repair Manual"; Chilton; 1993
  • "How to Restore Your Collector Car"; Tom Brownell; 1999
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