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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!

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Old 10-08-2009, 12:00 PM   #301
panther_v
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My Ride: 99328i sp/pp 02GS430
just replaced rear driver side regulator. this is the 3rd one; only 1 door left with original regulator since delivery.

this time i bought a cheaper (~$65 with s/h) 3rd party part from usautoparts.net. it looks identical to oem regulator, but when trying to fit the motor with regulator, the screw holes didn't match 100%. i used dremel to do some minor adjustment. everything else goes together just fine.

to answer upstairs's question, i didn't have to sync motor position; never had to do that with any of the 3 i replaced.

one thing i noticed this time is - i lost a car/key memory function after long period of battery disconnect. the auto lock @ 5mph function was gone. but after researching around, i was able to activate the function with a few key/lock steps from the key/car memory.

lastly, thank again to op for this diy write up. definitely save fellow owners a few bucks from dealer repairs.
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Old 10-08-2009, 08:20 PM   #302
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Old 03-16-2010, 07:49 PM   #303
pauliekeys
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Ok, I must be doing something wrong with the install of my two front regulators. I've replaced both front driver and passenger side regulators and they both lasted no more than 5 cycles. After that,both sides have had their guide wires become a tangled mess ! The first set of replacement regulators broke the same way and I sent them back thinking they were defective and both were replaced with the new replacements but, now the wife calls me after work with a fresh break. What seems to be happening is they're binding somewhere and the guide wire gets held up and bunches. I made sure to apply some lithium grease to the runners (maybe not enough?). Can anyone shed some light on what I might be going wrong with my install?

Thanks,

Pauliekeys

Last edited by pauliekeys; 03-16-2010 at 10:37 PM.
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Old 04-06-2010, 04:32 PM   #304
willyt
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Another happy customer!!!!

Just a big "thanks" for this DIY. My rear window reg quit on Easter Sunday, leaving the window fully open. Thankfully, weather was OK & I have a garage.

Ordered the reg from Bavarian Autosport @ $104 plus shipping. (Didn't want to chance non-OEM, despite BMW managing to screw things up initially w/ this part.)

Took me about 3 hrs, going slow & frequently consulting w/ the DIY. Had to cut the cable from the bad reg to get the window to lift freely, as the cable was bound up.

Only question I had was whether to lube the new reg. The old was was greased quite a bit. I decided to layer some white lithium grease on the inside.

Again, thanks for the effort in putting together the DIY, and this thread.

WT
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Old 07-09-2010, 07:58 PM   #305
LAIBERG
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I just replaced my rear window regulator. Everything went well, but when I use the use the back control to open/close the window, all it does it go down, but not back up. If I use the control in the center console, it works fine. Does anyone know how to fix this?
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Old 07-10-2010, 12:40 PM   #306
edco
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First, clean the glass. Make sure that the anti-pinch control hasn't been damaged.

Also, if you disconnected the battery, you may have lost the auto up setting. If so, turn the key to POS1, hold the upbutton for 15 sections,turn the key to off, and try again.

Had the same thing happen to me.

Hope that helps

ed

Last edited by edco; 07-10-2010 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 07-26-2010, 07:01 PM   #307
delmarco
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i need to do this mine just went today.
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:30 PM   #308
WITCHDOCTOR325i
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I bought an ebay generic regulator (front left window) for $49.00 which failed after 4 days.. they replaced it and the replacement failed after 7 days. They will issue a refund... will try an OEM unit and grease/silicone spray everything.

Was curious and called the local dealership in Fort Lauderdale and they want $170.00 for the reglulator plus 2.5 hours at $180.00 per hour!!! Total quote was $688.00 FOR ONE WINDOW............AYFKM????
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Old 04-18-2011, 07:20 AM   #309
druggrepp
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Nice write up, just remember, this was a rear door fix.
If you do the front door reg. disconnect neg battery cable so airbag wont't possibly blow you out of car../
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Old 04-24-2011, 12:58 AM   #310
edco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WITCHDOCTOR325i View Post
I bought an ebay generic regulator (front left window) for $49.00 which failed after 4 days.. they replaced it and the replacement failed after 7 days. They will issue a refund... will try an OEM unit and grease/silicone spray everything.

Was curious and called the local dealership in Fort Lauderdale and they want $170.00 for the reglulator plus 2.5 hours at $180.00 per hour!!! Total quote was $688.00 FOR ONE WINDOW............AYFKM????
Unfortunately your choices were both wrong.

First be sure you have the right part number by visiting realoem.com/bmw

Second, there are several BMW discount parts providers on this board. Do a search. getbmwparts.com is a good start.

Third, by now you've done it twice so (regardless of price of the part), you have all the know how to do it yourself. No need to pay dealer prices for labor.

Unless you want to keep replacing it,buy a quality OEM replacement part fromone of our sponsors and you will be happy. If "Davie" was in the NY/NJ area, I could probably recommend someone to do it a LOT cheaper.



Good luck
ed
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Old 04-24-2011, 01:45 PM   #311
shellback
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Just did mine. Worst part was getting hands dirty from the old unwound regulator cable.

Picked up a rear regulator from the local BMW dealer; paid $87. I do want to add some butyl tape to the vapor barrier just to make sure it's sealed up good.
Great DIY - thanks!
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:12 PM   #312
shellback
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actually, I'm stuck now.
I cant get the opening handle cable (with white plastic on end) to mate back with the silver door handle. It seemed so easy to take apart, but now after half an hour I can't those two parts to connect properly.
I also broke some clips (the ones on the door panel that plug into the door sheet metal).
Back to the dealer....
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Old 10-02-2011, 03:14 PM   #313
John in VA
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I just replaced the driver's side rear regulator in the 328i, using the Dorman 740-480. I got it on sale at Advance Auto, and it was in stock!
The hardest part, for me, was removing the window switch without denting or damaging the armrest. I slipped old credit cards under the edges of the switch and levered with a pair of small screwdrivers, slowly working around the switch.
Second hardest was pulling the protective barrier down, as it's in the low-50s here today. I used a razor blade to cut the thicker spots free as I tugged.
Once the regulator was installed it was necessary to plug the switch in to move the new regulator down a bit to reattach the window guide.
Here's what I found:
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:15 PM   #314
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This is very helpful. Thanks.
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Old 10-09-2011, 04:40 AM   #315
seacorb
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I did this today. unfortunately my window motor sounds like its dying as well.... ohwell at least it works for now eh. Props for the write-up.

also you might want to order a set of 10 new plastic rivets on ebay when you buy your regulator.... i have 2 stubborn rivets that will not stay in if you pull on the armrest to close the door, they just pop out leaving a small crack in between the panel and door.
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Old 05-18-2012, 05:56 PM   #316
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damn 11 years since i wrote this DIY... holy crap.. im getting old haha
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Old 05-18-2012, 06:34 PM   #317
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:16 PM   #318
nineironkitty
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Hi everyone! Hope everyone is well! I've read most of the thread...just wondering if anyone has advice for installing the window regulator in a convertible. I'm getting quoted $560 per side from a reputable BMW shop. They're saying most of it is labor because it takes a couple of hours to adjust the window into the convertible top. I have another quote for $400 for each side from a friend who owns a shop and gives us a break on the parts. I can get the OEM regulator for $133.54 shipped. My husband has done his window regulators a few times on his '95 318ti. It's a great write up so I'm just seeing if anyone has any pointers for a convertible. The one we want replace ASAP is the passenger side. My car is a 2002 330ci vert.

TIA!

Cindy Lou

Last edited by nineironkitty; 08-23-2012 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 08-26-2012, 02:49 PM   #319
John in VA
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Used this DIY along with http://www.bmwgm5.com/Rear_Window_Regulator.htm to replace the last of the original regulators on my wife's '00 328i sedan. I did the others last year, using the Dorman products from Advance Auto with good results. The passenger's rear regulator is part #740-481, and was ~$15 more expensive than the driver's rear one for some reason. I used a 20% discount code to get it for $72.

The tools I used:
- scrap piece of carpet to kneel on
- hair dryer to soften the butyl caulk that holds the foam liner in place
- 2 small flat screwdrivers to pry out the window switch
- 2 thin flat scrapers to pop free the door panel. I also used one as a base to pry up the window switch & not damage the door pull.
- Torx T20 & T27 screwdrivers for the door panel & window motor screws
- single edge razor blade to cut the caulk free from the foam liner as I pulled it free
- magnetic pick-up tool to retrieve parts dropped into the door!
- 3/8 ratchet with 10mm socket & 3" extension to loosen regulator from door
- 1/4 ratchet with 8mm socket & 2" extension to loosen window from bracket



From my experience doing the other three last year, I leave the lower edge of the liner in place to (hopefully) prevent leaks from the bottom edge not sealing well. (The rear floor boards of my E39 filled with water when it rained, from someone not securing the liner in place at the bottom). I heated the foam liner a bit at a time, starting at the top to free it from the caulk, and working my way down the sides.



As mentioned in the bmwgm5 DIY, loosen the screw holding the window to the red clip before loosening the regulator nuts, or you will be re-tightening them to be able to break free the 8mm screw holding the window. Here's what I found - the cable ends had come free from the plastic spool.




I pushed the window up out of the way to get the regulator out.



Once the new regulator is in place, carefully push the window down until you can see the red clip in the slot in the regulator so you can reattach the screw.



Once the screw is holding the window & the ridge of the red clip is positioned properly, tighten it. Before putting everything back in place plug the window switch back in & make sure the window moves freely & completely in both directions. I did not have to resynch the switch (I didn't disconnect the battery as I don't have rear air bags). I reheated the caulk strips & massaged the liner back into position. Reattach the speaker & door handle. Clean the door panel once it's popped into place. Reattach the trim strip. Now you're your wife's hero!!
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Last edited by John in VA; 08-26-2012 at 02:53 PM.
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Old 09-25-2012, 10:30 AM   #320
FLarrazabal
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Sounds easy but you forgot that the window now has to be adjusted forward and backward as needed as well as angle. Kinda need a service manual to do that.
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