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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 10-13-2007, 12:31 AM   #1
blusuede
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How do I remove my center console?--hazard switch

Anyone....? My hazard light switch broke and I bought a new one, but can't figure out how to get to it.
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Old 10-13-2007, 12:49 AM   #2
Speeder
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Not sure what a 99 center console looks like or exactly where the hazard light button is... I can't remember if (on my '04) I got to it by removing the cup holders and working forward to get to it or if I removed the trim surrounding the tranny shifter out and worked backwards.
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Old 10-13-2007, 09:10 AM   #3
blusuede
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how do you remove the trim around an automatic shifter?
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Old 10-13-2007, 02:49 PM   #4
Latinimagexx
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Does the same apply to a 2002? Would I also have to remove the trim around the shitfter?
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Old 10-13-2007, 06:47 PM   #5
m3m3me
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I'm confused. I would have assumed all e46 console located emergency flashers were the same. On my 02 M3 I just pryed out the bad unit with a small spade screwdriver, removed the connector from the old, attached connector to the new and snapped it back into the console. I think that's all it entailed.
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Old 10-13-2007, 11:55 PM   #6
frogg320
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I don't know if it's the same for an automatic, but in a manual here's how it went:

1. Pinch sides around shifter boot and pull out. This reveals two screws on the ebrake side of the square.

2. Unscrew screws. This allows you to lift up the center console a little bit, and you can reach the buttons from here.

3. Push buttons up towards you--they are held by spring clips (nothing you need to hold down or unlock) and they should pop right out.

I was able to fix mine myself by gluing the bottom of the plastic back in, as some people have mentioned in other threads. The buttons stopped working when the clips holding this backing on snapped, and without the pressure it provided you couldn't activate the switch in the module. All the electronics were fine, though. Here are some pictures:

I used a little balsa wood to apply pressure just to the bottom plate, which is flush with the sides. I applied 12 minute epoxy around the entire contacting surface. It seems to be very solid now.



And another, better picture of it (with problem areas highlighted, you can see where there used to be plastic there is now just epoxy. Who knows where those pieces went!)



Hope this helped, good luck.

-J
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Old 10-14-2007, 12:14 AM   #7
inertia
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Same thing happened to my hazard lights a few months back.

I used a similar epoxy technique and it's been solid since. BMW wanted $500 to fix it since it failed Safety.. go figure
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Old 10-15-2007, 02:36 PM   #8
nickdeck
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BMW wanted $500 to fix it
Huh? It's a $30 part that takes a couple of minutes to replace.
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Old 10-15-2007, 08:51 PM   #9
rodb
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Just did it an hour ago! Took a screwdriver and pried it out from the middle of the switch so as to only scratch the switch, then switched the lead and snapped it back into place. No problem and it was $47 Cdn. from the dealer.
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Old 10-15-2007, 11:54 PM   #10
frogg320
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Too bad Cdn. is real $$ now! Well, I guess it's all the same to you guys, but that's no longer coffee money to us.
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Old 10-24-2007, 09:15 PM   #11
blusuede
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thanks for all the help guys, finally got it fixed and it just slide right in. I also noticed that the old unit still worked, just the casing fell off of the bottom of the electronics, could have fixed it, but I already had a newbie. thanks
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Old 10-25-2007, 09:28 AM   #12
frogg320
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Fix it up, sell it cheap!
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Old 01-09-2008, 02:13 PM   #13
elkilla
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i got burnt, i paid TCBMW in markham $100 to fix it. If i knew it was this easy i would have done it my self and glued it, they're such crooks. I tried to make them pay for it by telling them that i need hazard lights for safety since its winter now. They claim the electronics was shorted and that there is liquid in the compartment. I know this is bull since i never drink....i told them to show me the part but they never did. manager was not in when i went to pick up the car.
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Old 04-23-2008, 07:08 PM   #14
Spaniardstud
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where did you buy the part
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Old 04-25-2008, 09:24 AM   #15
mastamind518
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does both the hazard and the lock button stop working? neither of my buttons are working so i assume i have the same problem. i havent had time to look at it tho, will prolly open it up this weekend. But yea, i dont hear the usual "click" sound the switch used to make.
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Old 04-27-2008, 03:18 PM   #16
Smooth&Tight
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I had same problem; both buttons stopped working. Previous post by Frog320 with photos was very helpful. Thanks. I found that I didn't need to remove any trim. I just used two bent paperclips inserted directly beside the buttons themselves (see photo below). This enabled me to pull upward on the switch assembly removed it from its hole in the console. I found the bottom of the switch assembly to be breaking out. In my case, I was able to find the small plastic pieces that fell off. I put those back in their places, used a similar rubber band clamp arrangement, and applied thickened epoxy to the outside. I just re-installed it and it works fine now.
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Old 04-30-2008, 10:50 PM   #17
nohbrant
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This post is meant to supplement previous ideas and methods on how to fix the hazards/door lock assembly switch. I'd also like to thank Frog320 and Smooth&Tight for providing visual aids for the fix. The following procedure was done in a 2004 325xi. See pictures for reference.

1. No need to remove the trim. Insert paper clips with bent tips to pop out the entire two-button assembly. I flattened the tips of my paper clips with a hammer to prevent indentations in the plastic around the buttons.

2. Once removed I took everything apart and cleaned the parts from dirt(might as well while it's out).

3. I used a combination of Loctite Liquid high strength Crazy glue and 5min. Epoxy. The liquid state of crazy glue allowed me to glue the bottom part inside the actual gap all around the assembly.

4. After the crazy glue has dried the Epoxy was used to cover and seal the crazy glue all around the bottom edge and around the original plastic snaps.

5. To hold it all together while it dried I used a wood working clamp with cut off pencil eraser to prevent damage.

There it is. Simple. No mess. And more importantly a CHEAP alternative to the dealer. Hope this helps.

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Namaste
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Old 12-02-2008, 03:29 PM   #18
FlyinFriar
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You can also use thin Wire

I used thin wire to just bring the bottom to the top. The wire fit in the slot just below the button...This whole process took literally 10 minutes and cost $0..
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Old 12-13-2008, 04:48 PM   #19
king1
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Thank you guys, great post and details. Exactly what I needed to fix the hazard switch. I just used some Aluminum Tape to tight it up.
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Old 12-19-2008, 03:48 PM   #20
nosoule46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m3m3me View Post
I'm confused. I would have assumed all e46 console located emergency flashers were the same. On my 02 M3 I just pryed out the bad unit with a small spade screwdriver, removed the connector from the old, attached connector to the new and snapped it back into the console. I think that's all it entailed.
Thanks for all these posts. My flasher cracked- functionally it worked but it was annoying me - it looked like a cracked eggshell. Since I bought a new one, I didn't care about damaging the old one.

At first, I thought I would have to remove the center console or pull up the shifter trim. I love this forum.

I used a hook to pull the unit up.
FYI- the PN is 61 31 8 368 920: I paid $30.
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