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Disclaimer: I'm a pretty novice DIY mechanic, so this is written for those with basic skills. If I'm insulting your car fixing intelligence, please move on.

Hi everyone, just wanted to share a quick DIY that has likely saved me hundreds of dollars at the shop. A week and a half ago, all my 2011 MDX's (nearing 80K miles) window controls suddenly stopped working, as well as the moonroof and mirror controls.

Did some research online, watched some YouTube vids, and learned that the driver side sub wire harness is a weak point and wires break and/or short over time. This part is the wire surrounded by black rubber accordian tubing connected between the door and the rest of the vehicle:


The symptoms were:
- All window controls didn't work. This includes the individual control at each door.
- Moon roof control didn't work.
- Side mirror controls stopped working for both sides, but mirrors would adjust with memory settings.

After reading about the sub wire issues, other common symptoms are the gas door and trunk release buttons not working, so this DIY can take care of several issues. The individual wires after years of the door opening and closing break or short, causing all sorts of issues. The harness is loaded with individual wires, so who knows what gremlins might surface when there's an issue?

What really irked me was that I couldn't control the individual windows at their respective door's control. Everything was dead. We were ok with the windows not working for a while when they were all shut, but the situation became more urgent when my son accidentally lowered the windows about 3-4 inches with the key fob unlock button.

So for a quick diagnosis, I peeled back the rubber boot on the door side, and sure enough a wire was dangling by itself (the yellow one at the bottom):


I had a hard time believing that one single wire would cause that many issues, but since at least one wire that I could see was broken off, I figured I'd try replacing it anyways, even if it didn't fix everything.

The part number is 32757-STX-A01, nomencalture is SUB-WIRE, DOOR (DRIVER SIDE). I got mine for $35 with expedited shipping at one of the online Acura OEM parts store:



The only tools I used:
- Leatherman (for the pliers)
- Flathead screwdriver
- Flashlight

Great thing is that the replacement part comes with everything, to include the plastic clips, rubber boot and tube, and is even prepacked with what I guess is dialetric grease. I wasnt looking forward to doing that last bit myself, so was pleasantly surprised it came with it already applied.

The wire starts at the door in the rubber boot and ends at two green box harness termination points above the footwell fuse box:


First, I removed one of the side panels of the dash board, pretty easy stuff, no screws or bolts, just plastic tension clips that can be pried out without tools:


This gave me access to use needle nose pliers (I actually used a Leatherman) to push out the white retaining clip of the old wire. The new wire comes with a new clip, so no worries if you damage the old one. This photo was taken from the opened side of the dash board looking in. There was enough space for me to get a Leatherman in there to squeeze and push the clip out:


Next I disconnected the two green box termination points in the footwell. Very simple, just push up the retaining clip at the bottom and pull:


Next was to unclip the wire where it goes through the doorway panel. There is a white plastic ring bracket that clips into the hole. I used a long narrow flathead screwdriver and essentially pushed in the plastic ring to crush/deform it until it popped out. Again, no need to worry about damaging the ring because a new one comes with the new wire. However, exercise caution if you are using a metal tool because you are pushing the clip out of the painted metal doorway:


Next up was to disconnect the wire at the door. If you haven't already, peel back the boot and pop off the termination similar to the other side. The difference here is the grease. If you prefer, use rubber gloves to keep things cleaner, but I was too lazy to grab a pair. Even this clip thing comes new with the replacement wire. This is what snaps into the door and the pointy ends are what the boot slips over to stay in place:


Now the old wire is ready to come out. Start at the footwell side and pull the green termination points through to the door. It's a little tricky because stuff gets tangled with the other wires, so be careful. Use the flathead and the openings of dashboard panel to snake and guide everything through to the door side and out. Here's the old wire, you can clearly see the broken wire:

In case you're wondering, I never bothered sorting through all the grease to see if any other wires were disconnected or damaged.

Putting the new wire in is just going the opposite way. Snake in the green terminations through the door opening. Again, utilize a flathead and spaces in the opened dashboard to guide the wire through. I recall there is one really annoying thin red wire that everything snags on.

Once the new wire is in place, snap in the small clip (the one you used a needlenose to pop off) and the ring clip at the door. The green terminations connect very easily and there is no way to mix up the two because they are different. The door side termination was a little trickier to connect, as the wires twist a bit awkwardly with the boot, so you have to check the orientation.

After the new wire was connected, I function checked everything, and success! Everything that didn't work now works. Also, everything that was working still works, so it seems everything is in order.

Total time: 45 minutes. More than half the time is getting the three plastic clips and brackets of the old wire disconnected.

I hope this helps some people out. I'm still getting over how quick, easy, and cheap a fix this was. From the online research, I guess a lot of shops simply default to swapping out modules and controllers to attempt to fix the issues. But if the wiring is bad, that's just a total waste of money and time.
 

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Great DIY write-up, well done. Thanks so much for posting. Are you sure you're not a BMW DIYer? lol
Documented like a BMW enthusiast. ;)


All the best!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Great DIY write-up, well done. Thanks so much for posting. Are you sure you're not a BMW DIYer? lol
Documented like a BMW enthusiast. ;)


All the best!
Thanks! I just hope this helps someone out. I was really amazed at how this simple fix could solve such a varied range of issues.

Yes, I love BMWs, and did a bunch of DIYs on the old e30, but didnt write about them. BMWs are really a labor of love!
 

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Excellent write up and visuals!

I completed this replacement in August due to the tailgate issue that escalated into unresponsible lock on the driver door, and got video footage waiting for its time to be edited. The most challenging part for me was getting the additional third party remote start wiring (which is connected with the door locks, as the car needs to be unlocked first in order to avoid triggering the alarm once the car is started) through the new harness sleeve. Hopefully, the video is going to be released somewhere in December.
 

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I just realized today that this fixed another gremlin that I kinda forgot about because it started a while ago.

The seat memory button #2 stopped working properly many miles ago. If I pressed it, it would adjust the seat and mirrors a little, and then randomly stop. I would have to continually press the button several more times until it would reach the final settings and give the double beep to indicate it was complete. There was no pattern. Every once in a while it would work with one press of the button, but most times not.

I guess this was the first indication, many miles before the other symptoms surfaced, that the sub-wire was going bad.
 

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Hey at least thanks to OP we have the correct part Number for the 2010-2013 models as the 07-09 ones have a different cable:

32757-STX-A00 for 2007-2009
32757-STX-A10 for 2010-2013
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Seems like so many years ago, Now everyone in YouTube is sharing this without the proper acknowledgments.
https://www.mdxers.org/forums/74-second-generation-mdx-2007-2013/114642-diy-replacing-door-sub-harness.html

But hey I am glad my DIY is still helping people!
all thanks to -Jon- anyway.
Hey at least thanks to OP we have the correct part Number for the 2010-2013 models as the 07-09 ones have a different cable:

32757-STX-A00 for 2007-2009
32757-STX-A10 for 2010-2013
Awesome, you beat us to it, but I don't recall finding your DIY while I did my research (prob because yours is posted in the general model-specific discussion, and not under the maintenance/problems sections). Not sure what else to tell you, but to expect more to follow as the 2010-2013 models start manifesting these problems more and more. Maybe you can get yours stickied and then you can get props for days (or years). Cheers.
 

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Thanks for this great detailed post! I had 2 wires broken on my harness. Took this car repair newbie 30 mins to replace this wire harness on a 2007 MDX. Now all my power windows, sunroof, and seat memory buttons are all working again. I have my fingers cross that this also fixed another issue where my FM radio would go completely dead sometimes when i start the car. The radio turns on, but no sound at all, and only for FM.
 

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Have folks still found this for around $30 for second Gen?
Link please?

I'm only seeing $70 for MDX second gen
 

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Thank you for a quick response. My rear driver window is stuck slightly down, so with fall winter weather, I would still get if someone can confirm it's the issue.

That area clicks when I use the master switch or the direct switch. Chance that it's a motor issue instead?
 
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