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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 10-26-2007, 09:27 PM   #1
Shuskan3
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***BMW E46 Coupe Rear Deck Removal DIY***

I bought my car back in December and when I bought the car it had no tint so the rear deck panel faded to a blueish color. Today I finally decided to remove and re-paint the panel but I could not find a good DIY so I figured I would type up my quick version. Below I will attach a few photos of before and after on my panel.



***This is by no means a perfect write-up so if I made any mistakes please correct me***


BMW E46 Coupe Rear Deck Removal DIY

Tools Needed:

T-25 Torx Driver
T-50 Torx Driver
8 mm Socket
Flathead Screwdriver

1. Remove the lower seat bench.
To remove you simply lift up and pull it out.
You may need to be firm with your pull although it is only held on by a few clips.

2. Unbolt the large bolt holding on the seatbelts.
The bolts are under the lower seat bench; this uses a large Torx bolt (T-50)

3. Fold down the rear seats.
Simply pull the lever in the trunk to loosen the seats.
After you pull the lever in the trunk you can simply pull down the seats.
When you fold down the seats you may want to put a towel over the bottom seat cushion clips so that they do not indent your leather.

4. Remove the lights from the C-pillar.
You will remove each light at the back and remove the hidden screws.(T-25) I used a flat head screw driver to pry the lights out. You must then disconnect the light from the plug connected to it.

5. Remove the C-pillar.
The C-pillar is attached by a few clips; carefully pull the C-pillar up and out.

6. Remove the rear seat bolsters.
To remove the rear seat bolsters you first must remove the top section right below the seatbelt holster.
After you pull the top section out you can simply pull up and out on the bolsters and they slide out.
The seatbelts will be holding the bolsters on so once you loosen the bolsters unbolt the bottom of the seatbelts and slide the seatbelts through the bolster.

7. Remove the plastic strip on the edge of rear deck.
You must pull the plastic rivets out of the top and unclip the bottom clips from the bottom corners of the strip.

8. Remove the speakers in the rear shelf.
You must first pry up the speaker cover.
After you lift up the speaker cover you need to unbolt the 3 bolts holding in the speakers. They are held in by 8 mm sockets. You must then remove the speakers and disconnect the wires.

9. Removal of headrest.
To remove the headrest you need to remove two clips from each headrest.
To remove these clips you need to pull the headrest up about 2 inches and pop the horseshoe clips off each side with a flathead screwdriver. After these clips are removed the headrest will simply slide up and off.

10. Removal of rear deck.
After the above steps the rear deck should slide up and out.

***This is by no means a perfect write-up so if I made any mistakes please correct me***
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2004 Carbon Black/Grey BMW M3
Hardwired V1 ~ Turner Motorsport Front and Rear Sways w/ Ground Control Endlinks ~ Powerflex RTAB’s ~ OEM BMW Performance SSK ~ ZHP Shift Knob ~ Painted Reflectors ~ Bluetooth ~ Satellite Radio ~ CDV Delete ~ Clutch Stop ~ Euro Tray ~ 19” CSL Wheels ~
18” OEM Wheels for the track



Last edited by Shuskan3; 10-26-2007 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 10-26-2007, 09:37 PM   #2
deafboy
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Wow... I had no idea how much work was require to take it out...lol.

Looks great though.... I'll have to try that this winter when I'm doing my other stuff
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:14 PM   #3
Shuskan3
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Originally Posted by deafboy View Post
Wow... I had no idea how much work was require to take it out...lol.

Looks great though.... I'll have to try that this winter when I'm doing my other stuff
Yah lol it was a real pain and took about 4.5 hours from start to finish. The main thing is though is to do it when you have plenty of time and be patient becuse one wrong move and it could cost you alot of money. (The C-pillars often break when being pulled out and they are $100 for the pair)
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Old 11-05-2007, 08:07 AM   #4
Bright Red
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Great Idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for the inspiration. Two hours and fifteen minutes later and my wifes rear deck is black and in new condition again. Wow I didn't realize how bad it really looked. When you pull the deck out and see all the black in the covered areas it is shocking.
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Old 11-05-2007, 09:30 AM   #5
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wow, looks great....what did you use to paint it?
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Old 11-08-2007, 05:47 PM   #6
Shuskan3
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Originally Posted by watdafuq327 View Post
wow, looks great....what did you use to paint it?
It was a dupli-color product. I attached a picture below so that you can identify it in the store.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bright Red View Post
Great Idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks for the inspiration. Two hours and fifteen minutes later and my wifes rear deck is black and in new condition again. Wow I didn't realize how bad it really looked. When you pull the deck out and see all the black in the covered areas it is shocking.

Glad to hear I could help!
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Hardwired V1 ~ Turner Motorsport Front and Rear Sways w/ Ground Control Endlinks ~ Powerflex RTAB’s ~ OEM BMW Performance SSK ~ ZHP Shift Knob ~ Painted Reflectors ~ Bluetooth ~ Satellite Radio ~ CDV Delete ~ Clutch Stop ~ Euro Tray ~ 19” CSL Wheels ~
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Old 12-27-2007, 03:04 PM   #7
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hey,

I am restoring my aging 328 ci, to sell it and I am new to this stuff. I have a question.

Regarding the rear headrest, I can't find the "horse shoe" clips, mine only has the round clips that are at the base of the rear headrest inserts. The only ones I see are the ones that are visible in you photos. Those are the clips I am supposed to be removing?

I have managed to get the whole back end out...except the headrest. It is not hard, you just have to be careful. Taking out those headrest would also make replacing the rear speakers so much easier.

Planning on using a PC orbital on it this weekend, and with the replacement of the limited wear/tear and damage, it looks great....ugh...keeping it wasn't on my list..lol
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Old 12-31-2007, 07:31 PM   #8
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At least for my car, all these posts about rear head rests pulling out, well, just aren't true. This is for a coupe. The parcel shelf was about 80 bucks i think, a small price, for a a car that i haven't had a payment for in years...


This is actually called the parcel shelf. Replacing this has a really nice effect on the interior. Not to mention two additional perks, one, you can easily replace the rear speakers (thus proceed with an audio upgrade), AND you can clean the rear window. I am toying with finding a way to leave the rear headrests free yet insert-able.

You basically, need to remove the whole rear end of the interior but it is not that bad. I did it when i had it down, in about 20 minutes, figuring it out took the longest especially getting to those horse shoe clips.

I will put forth a naming convention for now. There is the rear seat bench, the part you sit on. The rear seat bench just pulls out. There is the rear seat back, which is what you back leans on. There is the lateral seat, which is the section that rear shoulder belt rests on when not in use. This just pulls out too. The lateral seat also has a hard plastic shoulder, which houses the rear window motor. The lateral seat shoulder piece has a anchor on the top section of it, that when removed, allows the shoulder piece to rotate and move without removing the window attachment. There is a black plastic latch cover that covers the rear seat back latches, as well, this runs the width of the rear seat backs. There is a plastic eye-let, that the should belt feeds through, that makes the hole where the belt goes into the parcel shelf look nice. These pieces are incomplete on the bottom, meaning, that the belt can be slid out the bottom side of this.


Take out the rear seat, and the lateral seat pieces, loosen the lateral shoulder piece. I also dislodges the C pillar covers. The rear shoulder belt is held in place by a torx screw, a 50 O think, you might need to wd40 if, but it comes out with out any difficulty. Remove the latch cover. Don't bother with removing the latches for the rear seat back, they have no effect. But the black latch cover, needs to be removed. It has 4 anchors on the top portion of the support, that hold it in place. There are 4 gotcha places on the underside of the trim that the rear seats latch to. Once the upper anchors are free, you need to pull DOWN on the black plastic to free the gotcha areas on the bottom. You lift the parcel shelf up until you can get a finger in, and find all 4 of the horse shoe clips at the base of the 4 headrest posts. I used needle nose pliers to reach in, and yank those horse shoe clips right out. Once you pull both clips per headrest, the headrests come out easily. After you free up the headrest, I removed the rear speakers, and the rear speaker enclosures. Pry them out gently. The black speaker housing, sits down inside the rear parcel shelf. The rear speakers are held by the parcel shelf.

feed the belts thru the holes, and attach the eye-lets for the seat belt insertion holes. Slide the parcel shelf back into place. I dropped the speaker enclosure and the speakers in (with no headrest, this is easy, and you should see how clean the back window is).

Notes to be careful about.
You can dislodge the fabric on the c pillars and break the housing for the lights in the c pillar. Just take care with the c pillar. You might get away with not pulling these loose.
You can also break pieces of the speaker enclosure on the bottom if not careful. I did manage to break a few sections in the bottom of it, but is has no cosmetic side effects...
try not to strip the bolt for the seat belts.

Last edited by ttboy; 12-31-2007 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 01-04-2008, 12:30 PM   #9
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i thought they were supposed to be blue


i gotta dynamat today so mine will be pulled out. thanks for the diy mAN
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Old 01-04-2008, 06:44 PM   #10
Shuskan3
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Originally Posted by BreakMyWallet View Post
i thought they were supposed to be blue


i gotta dynamat today so mine will be pulled out. thanks for the diy mAN
Lol, Goodluck
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Hardwired V1 ~ Turner Motorsport Front and Rear Sways w/ Ground Control Endlinks ~ Powerflex RTAB’s ~ OEM BMW Performance SSK ~ ZHP Shift Knob ~ Painted Reflectors ~ Bluetooth ~ Satellite Radio ~ CDV Delete ~ Clutch Stop ~ Euro Tray ~ 19” CSL Wheels ~
18” OEM Wheels for the track


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Old 01-06-2008, 12:41 AM   #11
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eh.. while i was waiting i decided to suede it.

not as bad as the diy made it seem. i had it out in 30.

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Old 02-20-2008, 07:45 AM   #12
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subscribed. nice diy.
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Old 05-16-2008, 11:33 AM   #13
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i thought they were supposed to be blue
OMG i always wondered why they would put an ugly blue deck in an all black car. well i guess i can add this to my list. thank you so much for this DIY, OP.
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Old 06-20-2008, 10:02 AM   #14
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I looking forward to doing this too. Maybe this weekend.
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Old 07-19-2008, 11:51 AM   #15
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This was a great project! There are a few steps that I would add and also a few extra tips for the next person who wishes to do this. With out these tips that I didn't know it took me about 4 hours time not including the drying time of the back deck. The benifits of the look after its done is amazing!

Tips:
To get the back seat out pry it out with your fingers on top and pull very hard.

The small pins that keep the deck secured to the mounts if you just take the back of the trunk out and drive around you should be able to find them all with no issues.

For the head rest for a 2001 325i through the trunk push up on the rod that is inside the mount to break them loose.
When you are re-installing everything before you put the back of the seat in, install the lower mounts for the seat belt.
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Old 08-18-2008, 07:13 PM   #16
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I bought mine used and the deck is pretty blue, more of a navy. I thought it came that way! I actually don't mind it since I have topaz blue exterior
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Old 10-03-2008, 01:44 AM   #17
Danny Lamola
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Howzit guys.

The rear deck on my e-46 coupe is ratling when playing music with high Bass, how can i remove the deck and cushin it from making this funny noises.
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Old 10-03-2008, 03:24 AM   #18
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^ are you sure it's the deck? i found out that here is a plastic piece on top of the deck that rattles while i'm playing music with a lot of bass. i just double sided tape that part down
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Old 10-03-2008, 04:11 AM   #19
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^ are you sure it's the deck? i found out that here is a plastic piece on top of the deck that rattles while i'm playing music with a lot of bass. i just double sided tape that part down
where's that plastic piece exactly ?
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Old 10-03-2008, 04:14 AM   #20
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it's right on top of the deck. where those black things are. i forgot what they are called. it's like a rectangular piece right under it. i think only some cars come with them. in the OP's picture i don't see them.

edit:
now i remember what those things are called. the child safety brackets for the car seats
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