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-   -   Car side driver lock broken. Locked out, help! (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=947688)

VintagePleasureLA 09-29-2012 09:41 PM

Car side driver lock broken. Locked out, help!
So there is damage the my key FOb and because of this I've been using my key to unlock my door manually for a couple months now. This morning I went out to my car to go to work and when I inserted my key and turned I felt no resistance. I can turn my key 90 degrees in either direction but nothing happens. I looked it up and this seems to be a common issue, something about a metal rod breaking in the lock's actuator. Here's where my problem starts. I called AAA thinking they could just come and unlock my door and I'd just have to drive around without the ability to unlock my door, no big deal. But when AAA came out thy were unable to get my door unlocked. They tried reaching in with a metal pole and just pulling the inside handle (which has worked previously when I locked my keys in the car) but when they did this nothing happened. So they tried again on the passenger side and still nothing! I'm able to open my trunk but My rear seats do not fold down from the trunk area so I don't know what to do. Help advice!?

VintagePleasureLA 09-29-2012 10:16 PM

Since I didn't get a reply to the above question, can someone just tell me will my car unlock if I get a new functioning key fob despite the cylinder being broken

warriorpluto 09-29-2012 10:36 PM

Yes just get another key to remotely unlock your door

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Bimmer App

curca 09-29-2012 10:45 PM

I had same problem with my door, my key battery was shot and I was opening manually with key, one day I tried to open in sub zero weather and when i turn key i heard snup and key did not have any resistance, I called AAA and they managed to open it, make sure you unlock doors why pushing unlock button on middle console and they try pulling on door handle inside

VintagePleasureLA 09-29-2012 10:49 PM

The center unlock button doesn't function because it came unplugged. From what I've read this is caused by a faulty clip under the center console. #bmwdriverproblems

curca 09-30-2012 11:27 PM

take your car pink slip to a dealer and order a new key

jfoj 09-30-2012 11:52 PM

Well a new key will not help you here. It will need to be synchronized to the keyless entry system which requires access inside the car.

You could possibly try to carefully cut your current key open and replace the battery and HOPE the keyfob works to unlock your car door.

You have to be VERY careful not to cut yourself or the EWS components on the keys circuit board.

You really need to order another key anyway, $160 for a new keyfob from the dealer is typically a good price. Shop around if they want more.

With the replacement keyfob, if you screw up the EWS circuit on the old key you will be able to start the car with the new key once you get in the car.

I have not confirmed this will work, but search Car Kracker on the forum here, it appears if you had a Car Kracker module and you could tie into the Ibus in the trunk, you might be able to use a computer to open the car doors??

The problem is the Car Kracker circuitry, the software, the computer and will it really work?? It should, but I have not confirmed this.

In order to unlock the doors with the interior handles, you need to push the central lock button first. Sounds like you are SOL as your central lock button is broken also.

This is a CLASSIC case that we are seeing over and over again of 2nd to 5th owners with one key and the keyfob does not work and/or the drivers door lock linkage is broken and/or the only key is lost or locked in the trunk.

EVERY E46 OWNER NEEDS 2 WORKING KEYFOB AND A WORKING DRIVER DOOR LOCK!! The $200 you spend now will save you plenty more money and time in the future. BUY ANOTHER KEYFOB AND MAKE SURE YOUR DRIVERS DOOR LOCK WORKS NOW!!


Good luck. Hopefully it will not be hammer or brick time??

trj 10-01-2012 01:15 AM

I dont know, but if you have folding seats get(or send someone small) inside from the trunk and open the doors from inside.
Anyway get a new key whether you are able to change the battery or not.

jfoj 10-01-2012 06:02 AM

I do not recall if you turn the ignition on if the door will partially unlock??

Remember the center console button does not work.

If he gets a new key, again, I have not tired to resync a keyfob without opening the drivers door, but if you get inside the car you should be able to put the windows down.

Can you say Bo & Luke Duke?

dancmos 03-17-2013 09:31 AM

2 Attachment(s)
My key would turn 90 degrees left and right but did nothing. I found a post in the lock cylinder. That was it. I found the part for $29 on EBay.

Here's the process for removing it. http://youtu.be/BiXHJJbSWLM

Mflara20 03-17-2013 09:41 AM

If your key fob worked and your car had been coded to roll down the windows with your key maybe that would be your solution.

dancmos 03-17-2013 09:54 AM


Originally Posted by Mflara20 (Post 15257823)
If your key fob worked and your car had been coded to roll down the windows with your key maybe that would be your solution.

It appears the battery in my fob is dead, both of them, or it could be the GM5. The center button in the console always works. I keep the car locked up in my garage. I'm fixing the window regulators also.

Mflara20 03-19-2013 08:54 PM

Did you ever got it fixed?

delmarco 03-27-2013 07:14 PM

This just happened to me...so I suppose calling AAA is not going to get me into the car?

jfoj 03-27-2013 07:57 PM


I cannot believe you got it!!

You sure you car battery is not dead or you do not have a GM5 that needs multiple tries to unlock the doors?

Do you have fold down rear seats?

You get the broken door lock link?

If you can get something to push the central locking button on the console, then pull the door handles 2x you can get in the car.

What I need to ask Scott is if the earlier keyfobs with the LED and replaceable battery can be programmed to the 2000 and newer cars with the diamond fobs. If so, buy a cheap, used ebay key and program the fob to the car just so you can open the car. The reason this would be good is a used diamond key may have a weak, dead battery or not stay good if the key sites around and since the key will not work in the ignition you could never charge the used ebay diamond key.

Otherwise you have to Pony up the $160 if you can find a dealer to sell it to for that price in NY.

Something tells me the diamond fobs are different circuity that the old fobs with the LED, but if they would work, you could probably get an old square key for about $20 on ebay and use the fob.

leblancrene 03-28-2013 04:25 PM

Charging coil?
Ok how can we keep a spare key charged without using car?

jfoj 03-29-2013 04:24 AM

That's the problem!

So either you get an ebay replacement housing and go to the effort to cut the spare key that does not fit the car or find out if the early square keys with the replaceable battery can work with the newer diamond key systems. If so, then the early key is the simplest solution.

Or someone experiments and finds out if a Ford, GM, VW or some other fob with a replaceable battery can control the door locks in these cars!

MJLavelle 03-29-2013 04:49 AM

The ironic part in all of this is that this entire system was designed because of an EU mandate to reduce car theft. The irony begins with it keeping the rightful owners out of their cars, and ends with BMW now being the ones committing the robberies, with the prices they charge for replacing a fvcking key.
Just remember, this is a feature, a selling point, and it is there for YOUR protection!
It sure as **** does not feel that way, does it?
The more I read about the security system and the EWS system, the more amazed I am that it works at all. It is complexity wrapped in more complexity. But a simple lock cylinder can render the entire thing useless.

jfoj 03-29-2013 05:10 AM

The other option would be to have 2 door lock cylinders the old school way!

Given right hand drive cars were produced, you would likely retofit a 2nd door lock cylinder, you would likely also need to replace the passenger door lock actuator and maybe modify the lock cylinder a bit.

In the end having a 2nd keyfod is cheaper and easier.

I have warned people many times having any of these vintage BMW's with just a single working keyfob is a BAD idea!

I just wonder how many of the door lock links have been broken for years and nobody is aware of the link being broken until you try to get into the car when the keyfob dies??

It is rather amazing how complex and well thought out the central locking system is in these cars for when they were originally designed.

leblancrene 03-29-2013 08:58 AM

What about running secret wires from the unlock button to somewhere outside?
After all 10 yr old cars are not exactly high on thieves list.

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