E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > Tuning & Tech > DIY: Do It Yourself

DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rating: Thread Rating: 16 votes, 5.00 average. Display Modes
Old 09-09-2009, 04:26 PM   #1
DenaliXTC
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: NU JOISEY
Posts: 2,431
My Ride: S/C M3, 745i, X5M
Send a message via AIM to DenaliXTC
DIY w/ PICS: Windshield Wiper Motor Replacement (how to fix commonly broken motor)

This is on my 2001 330ci

Ok so my wipers stopped working on me and it wasn't any fuses or relays. It had to be the motor. I got another motor and searched everywhere for a DIY and couldnít find one so I decided Iíll make one while doing the swap.

I am not responsible for anything that you do to your car; this is simply a documentation of how I did it in my car. If you screw something up or your car becomes damaged in any way I am not responsible Ė you are doing this at your own risk. If you agree than continue reading on.

Tools you will need:
-Flathead screw driver
-Torx 27 bit
-15mm socket
-10m socket
-13mm socket
-Ratchet
-Flashlight
-Adjustable or 15/16Ē wrench or 15/16Ē long socket

This took me about half hour to 45 minutes to do.

Start by opening up your hood and locating the windshield wiper arms.



Youíll see a black rubber cap over the pivot point of each wiper. Use the flat head screw driver to remove the rubber cap to expose the 15mm bolt.



Take your socket and ratchet and undo the bolt. Youíll need to wiggle the wiper up and down and back and fourth to loosen the ďinstallation elementĒ (as realoem.com refers to it) out. You can now remove the wiper arm.



Next, undo the 3 rivets that hold the micro filter cover down (circled in red), and remove the micro filter cover. Also remove the wiper cowl, itís held on by 7 flimsy clips. Just pull on it gently and itíll snap out.



Next remove the micro filter. (You can use this opportunity to clean out that area and replace the micro filter with a new one when reinstalling)



Now, get your torx 27 bit and remove the 4 screws (circled in blue). After the screws are out you can pull it out of its place and flip it over so itís laying face down. This way you can avoid taking apart all the wiring connected to the front of the micro filter housing.



Donít put the torx driver down yet; youíll need it to remove the two screws that fasten a panel over the firewall. The screws on my car didnít remove from the panel, but when they were out of the firewall I pulled up on the panel and it came right out.



This is what you should see. Youíll notice a connection harness circled in pink (no ). These wires connect to the wiper motor.



Back to where the wipers connect to the car. Take the 15/16Ē wrench, ratchet, socket or whatever you are using and remove the nut followed by the washer under it. Do this to both sides, obviously.



Youíll notice the wiper linkage is loose.



Now you can go ahead and unplug the harness attached to the wiper motor. If you did it earlier then its no big deal, your car wonít explode.



Everything feels real loose and like itís ready to come out, but you have one more step. There is a 10mm bolt and washer way in there. Itís a pain in the ass, and probably the hardest part of this DIY. Youíll probably need the flashlight to find it. I tried to capture it as best I could in the following image. You can see in the second image down from here where the bolt is located. (Circled in yellow) Once you locate it remove the bolt. Now you can remove the wiper assembly.



You may need to man-handle it out a bit as itís in there pretty tight.



Here is the assembly out of the car and where the annoying bolt was holding the assembly in place.



Next, youíll need to undo the 3 10mm bolts (circled in red) and the one 13mm (blue) to remove the motor from the assembly.



After you do this, you can put the new motor on the assembly and follow the steps backwards to reinstall. When reinstalling the motor I tried to mimic the positioning of the arms in the diagram below taken from realoem.com. This helped ensure that when the wiper arms were attached back to the car they would swing up across the windshield, rather than down towards the engine.



NOTE: After removing my ďbrokenĒ motor and reinstalling my new motor I came across this posting (post number 3) and a few others. I understood how the motor turned on and off and after a little more research I decided to clean the grease from the disc in the motor. I decided to open up the motor by undoing the 4 clips (circled in green below) and see WTF everyone was talking about.



Low and behold the disc inside was covered in grease. I took a rag and wiped all the grease off the disc (first picture below) and the two little brushes (2nd pic below circled in red) that contact the disc. I reassembled the motor, plugged it back into the car to see if it worked, and what do you know, it works like new. So before buying a brand new motor, open your existing motor up and give it a good cleaning and see if that solves your problem. It can also solve the problem of having your wipers stop halfway across your windshield.





GOOD LUCK!
__________________


Active Autowerkes Gen 7 Stage 2 | Evosport | Vorsteiner | DPE | Supersprint | Rogue Eng.
Brembo 6pot 355/4pot 345 | Dinan 3.91 | HKS | HPF | Custom GTR | Radar Mirror | Leatherz | Beemer Evolution

LSB/Cinn M3 490 RWHP superflow dyno
2011 X5 M White/Blk Vorsteiner
2005 CTS-V 549rwhp/524rwtq all motor
2013 JCW MINI Cooper hardloaded
DenaliXTC is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 09-25-2009, 07:41 PM   #2
Dave
Moderator
 
Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 1969
Location: Miami
Posts: 2,178
My Ride: 323,330,M3,M3,M3
This is a great DIY!

If only it had existed back when I was hoping to do this job... to that car... with that part... haha.
__________________
Perhaps you think multi-million dollar ad campaigns make a beer taste better. Perhaps you're mouthing your words as you read this.
Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2009, 07:49 PM   #3
Many330i
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Little Elm, TX
Posts: 1,206
My Ride: 330i ZHP Silver
Nice diy - great job!
Many330i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 10:24 PM   #4
genuity
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: *
Posts: 1,414
My Ride: '1 E46
Awesome--thanks! Did you replace the grease you wiped off? If so, what kind of grease was it?

It also looks like you could have also replaced your cowl grille. I noticed cracks on the edges where it contacts the windshield.

Also, a note to add to those doing this, remember to mark the exact position of your wipers blades before pulling the blades. It's a PITA to get it back on to the right position. I used white out. There is a good DIY of the cowl grille here: http://www.bmpdesign.com/technical/t..._seal_leak.php
genuity is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2009, 11:25 PM   #5
pish180
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 136
My Ride: 02' M3
Send a message via AIM to pish180
This needs adding to the DIY guide. Nice write up!
__________________
<-----:::::::::===================== =======================:::::::::----->

<-----:::::::::===================== =======================:::::::::----->
pish180 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2009, 10:26 PM   #6
Jelly335
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: L.I. NY/ CF FL
Posts: 5,541
My Ride: 2001 bmw 330I
Send a message via AIM to Jelly335
nice brandon. im about to do this..i check the fuses but there was no fuse that said for the windshield wipers. do you know what number it might be? thanks buddy
__________________

E46 330i retired
E92 335 current
<3 my one wheel wonder
http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2269710/1
-Jeremy
Jelly335 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2009, 04:30 PM   #7
DenaliXTC
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: NU JOISEY
Posts: 2,431
My Ride: S/C M3, 745i, X5M
Send a message via AIM to DenaliXTC
Quote:
Originally Posted by JELBMW330I View Post
nice brandon. im about to do this..i check the fuses but there was no fuse that said for the windshield wipers. do you know what number it might be? thanks buddy
I don't remember, I think its a relay under the hood.
__________________


Active Autowerkes Gen 7 Stage 2 | Evosport | Vorsteiner | DPE | Supersprint | Rogue Eng.
Brembo 6pot 355/4pot 345 | Dinan 3.91 | HKS | HPF | Custom GTR | Radar Mirror | Leatherz | Beemer Evolution

LSB/Cinn M3 490 RWHP superflow dyno
2011 X5 M White/Blk Vorsteiner
2005 CTS-V 549rwhp/524rwtq all motor
2013 JCW MINI Cooper hardloaded
DenaliXTC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2009, 01:43 PM   #8
kkleinwi
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 5
My Ride: 2002 325i
I had a problem with my wipers not stopping in the full down position. This DIY was very helpful, but I have a few additional notes.

- To try to remove the wipers, I tapped on the wiper axles with a hammer while pulling up on the wiper. Bad move. The threads on the wiper linkage that poke through the cowl are plastic and I stripped them. I ended up having to replace the whole linkage. (Doh!)

- You can't remove (or install) the wiper linkage with the wipers in the down position. Run the wipers and then shut off the ignition when the wipers are in the full up position.

- Cleaning the motor did not solve the problem. Instead, I ended up having a bad wiper relay. Apparently it gets "sticky" and doesn't shut off quickly enough when the wipers reach the bottom position. In typical BMW fashion, the relay costs a way overpriced $25 (which is why I tried the motor cleaning route first).
kkleinwi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2009, 08:37 PM   #9
DenaliXTC
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: NU JOISEY
Posts: 2,431
My Ride: S/C M3, 745i, X5M
Send a message via AIM to DenaliXTC
Quote:
Originally Posted by kkleinwi View Post
I had a problem with my wipers not stopping in the full down position. This DIY was very helpful, but I have a few additional notes.

- To try to remove the wipers, I tapped on the wiper axles with a hammer while pulling up on the wiper. Bad move. The threads on the wiper linkage that poke through the cowl are plastic and I stripped them. I ended up having to replace the whole linkage. (Doh!)

- You can't remove (or install) the wiper linkage with the wipers in the down position. Run the wipers and then shut off the ignition when the wipers are in the full up position.

- Cleaning the motor did not solve the problem. Instead, I ended up having a bad wiper relay. Apparently it gets "sticky" and doesn't shut off quickly enough when the wipers reach the bottom position. In typical BMW fashion, the relay costs a way overpriced $25 (which is why I tried the motor cleaning route first).
Thanks for the notes!!
__________________


Active Autowerkes Gen 7 Stage 2 | Evosport | Vorsteiner | DPE | Supersprint | Rogue Eng.
Brembo 6pot 355/4pot 345 | Dinan 3.91 | HKS | HPF | Custom GTR | Radar Mirror | Leatherz | Beemer Evolution

LSB/Cinn M3 490 RWHP superflow dyno
2011 X5 M White/Blk Vorsteiner
2005 CTS-V 549rwhp/524rwtq all motor
2013 JCW MINI Cooper hardloaded
DenaliXTC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2009, 08:41 PM   #10
///M3Turk
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Wayne, NJ
Posts: 12,059
My Ride: M6 ,X5, R6, M5, M3
Send a message via AIM to ///M3Turk Send a message via MSN to ///M3Turk
__________________

Firat
///M3Turk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-15-2010, 01:00 AM   #11
zp18zp18
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Orange County, California
Posts: 24
My Ride: 99 323i
I also did this procedure last year. I would like to add that I tightened the nut too tight and the spring on the bottom of the wiper arm rubbed on the windshield. When I finished the job, I tested the wipers and all worked OK. I had to wait 6 months until it rained in Southern California to see how they worked in the rain. Unfortunately the screech of the spring on my windshield had me pulling over in the rain to see what it was. I put black tape around the wiper and also some on the windshield to protect it. I ordered the "installation element" and will put it on this week. No more rain forecasted until next January.
__________________
George W. Barrowcliff

  • 65 Mustang GT Coupe (one owner, me)

  • 87 535i(sold)

  • 88 325is

  • 99 323i

  • So Cal, Orange County


I need a 02-05 330Ci

zp18zp18 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-23-2010, 02:54 PM   #12
RacerX_380
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Georgia
Posts: 1
My Ride: e46 M3
Great pictures. Thank you! One loose 16mm nut. Doh!
RacerX_380 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2010, 01:00 PM   #13
Nathan323i
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 9
My Ride: 1999 323i
Very useful - thanks. One comment - perhaps you already stated this and i missed it - but to get the arm assembly back in place, I had to move one of the arms out of the way by turning on the wiper motor and turning it off at "mid-swing". This helped tremendously - smooth sailing after that...
Nathan323i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2010, 02:26 AM   #14
Hanu91
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Finland
Posts: 2
My Ride: 320d
I also did this yeasterday and I have 320d 2003. The motor was a little bit different compared with the motor in pictures but cleaning the grease did magic! By the way you have to disconnect your car battery for a minute after you have put everything back because if you don't everytime you test the wipers fuse number 59 (30A) blows. There is some software that needs to be reset and to do that just disconnect the battery.
Hanu91 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2010, 02:49 PM   #15
eric m j
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 18
My Ride: 2000 323ci
can you replace just one end of wiper arm assy? motor works great but passenger end is loose - wiper parks 3 inches higher than it should
eric m j is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2010, 03:08 PM   #16
Custom3
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Dirty Jersey
Posts: 5,445
My Ride: HellRot 330CI
i dont need to do this diy just yet but im sure some day I will...great job and thanks for posting.....also this should help those wanting to replace the windshield cowl.
Custom3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-26-2010, 04:36 PM   #17
Hanu91
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Finland
Posts: 2
My Ride: 320d
Quote:
Originally Posted by eric m j View Post
can you replace just one end of wiper arm assy? motor works great but passenger end is loose - wiper parks 3 inches higher than it should
If you mean that your passenger wiper stops in wrong place but otherwise works fine then you can fix the problem by taking the wiper arm away and then in the fastening point you can take the metal "ring" away from the arm. then just place the arm on the windshield in right position and put the ring back and tighten the nut. The "ring" is modelled as cone so you can tighten the wiper arm in any position (sorry my bad english)
Hanu91 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 04:56 PM   #18
eric m j
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: winnipeg
Posts: 18
My Ride: 2000 323ci
thanks for info- will try as soon as i can get in a heated garage -
eric m j is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-01-2011, 06:27 PM   #19
TrickTizzle
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Minneapolis/Milwaukee
Posts: 3,117
My Ride: 325i
Send a message via AIM to TrickTizzle
Nice DIY!
TrickTizzle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-08-2011, 02:06 PM   #20
e46newbieee
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1
My Ride: E46
Pictures

I cannot see the pictures the instruction is referring to. Could you post them or tell me how I can see them? Thanks!
e46newbieee is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:29 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use