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Old 09-10-2009, 04:25 PM   #1
MIKEYZ325CI
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Question Covertible top problems for 04 325 please help!!!!!!!!!!

so i have a 325ci 04 and my top wont go down trunk is closed and the luggage lever is down. when i press the down button it dosent even realize i press it but if u press up it makes a loud clicking noise ive tried undoing the top manually and it will unlatch but the down button still dosent work but when i press the up button it closes just fine also the red button is blinking nonstop too someone says its not the motor either what can it be please help me any suggestions would be greatly appreciated
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:11 PM   #2
530I530I
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I would check the microswitch for the trunk storage compartment. I would also check all the fuses related to top operation
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:43 PM   #3
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I had this happen a couple of weeks ago. Red light was blinking (quickly) and nothing happening. I checked the manual and it had me check the fold down compartment in the trunk that holds the canopy top when it is down. It looked ok....but when I adjusted it slightly everything started working again.
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:40 PM   #4
iansanderson
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You will need the car scanned by a dealer computer or similar to see what problem the convertible top module is reporting. If you don't get anywhere with opening and closing things, this is the first step to take. Don't throw any parts at it until you see what the error is.
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Cheat Sheet:

GT1/ISIS/MoDiC = Factory authorized diagnostic system used by BMW dealerships across the world.

NCS Expert = BMW Factory R&D programming tool available on the internet (not intended for the public and not available to the dealership network)

OEM = Genuine BMW part only available from a franchised BMW dealership.

DME = Engine Management Computer
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:56 PM   #5
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You need to look at live values in the tool to see what the micro switches are doing
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Old 09-14-2009, 08:54 AM   #6
trooters
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIKEYZ325CI View Post
when i press the down button it dosent even realize i press it but if u press up it makes a loud clicking noise
Mine just started doing this yesterday. I traced the sound to the manual-override switch for the top (in between the seats, above the motor) rapidly popping in-and-out while the motor is running. It sounds like it could be something is loose or stuck.

Did you figure out what was going on? I hate to think that I have to replace expensive parts.

Last edited by trooters; 09-14-2009 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:36 PM   #7
BavLar
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Make sure you dont forcefully open or close it manually. The button which is making the clicking noise should be pressed before you manually move the top up or down. If you don't hit that button you risk damaging the hydraulics.

Keep us posted.
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Old 09-14-2009, 03:23 PM   #8
wetzie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iansanderson View Post
You will need the car scanned by a dealer computer or similar to see what problem the convertible top module is reporting. If you don't get anywhere with opening and closing things, this is the first step to take. Don't throw any parts at it until you see what the error is.
Can the Peake tool scan for these types of codes? Has anyone tried it?
thanx
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Old 09-15-2009, 02:28 PM   #9
trooters
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Noise isolated, failure found

Quote:
Originally Posted by ctrog330 View Post
Keep us posted.
OK, so I took a look at things more closely and I've made the following determination:

The sound is due to the gear wheel popping in and out and bouncing against the plastic cover, as well as the gear teeth grinding against each other. (see attachement: PlasticCoverFail.png)


The reason for the gear being loose is due to the plastic cover failing to keep adequate pressure on the gears being driven by the covertible top motor (p/n: 51258248308). It seems that one of the prongs in the plastic cover has worn over time (and bent), resulting in enough play that the gears pop out of place. (attachment: PlasticCoverFailWhy.png)

The unfortunate side of this is that I can't seem to find the plastic cover being sold separately from the $350 motor lid. It is absurd that a weak piece of plastic must be replaced with a $350 part. There also doesn't seem to be an easy way to fix this and keep steady pressure on the plastic cover and/or the gear so that things can function normally (it takes considerable pressure on top of the cover allow my top to open/close normally).


Notes for others
- You can access the motor cover by pulling the rear seat cushion from the car. It comes out very easily by yanking upward on the rear seat cushion.
- The plastic cover comes off very easily, working your way up from the taps nearest to the front of the car. Take care to not damage the plastic tabs.
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Old 09-16-2009, 06:10 PM   #10
Bakerr14
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I have been having the same problem with my top. Although I am not able to narrow down my issue. After seeing your pictures in your post, I was able to take my seat out and check the motor assembly. When I hit the button to put the top down, the top opens about 1" then stops. What is weird is that the motor under the rear seat, does nothing. It does not move at all when the switch is pushed. We tested power going into the motor and it checks as no power going into the unit. So I took a 12V battery and manually hooked it up to the motor positive and negative inputs. The motor assembly cycles like it should. I hit the open button on the top and it still does the same thing prior even with power going to the unit. I checked all fuses and everything checks out. I am baffled at this point. There are no fuses bad and the motor works with an external power source. This obviously narrows it down, but where to check elsewhere in the car? Any ideas would be extremely appreciated!
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Old 09-16-2009, 07:19 PM   #11
BobSC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trooters View Post
OK, so I took a look at things more closely and I've made the following determination:

The sound is due to the gear wheel popping in and out and bouncing against the plastic cover, as well as the gear teeth grinding against each other. (see attachement: PlasticCoverFail.png)


The reason for the gear being loose is due to the plastic cover failing to keep adequate pressure on the gears being driven by the covertible top motor (p/n: 51258248308). It seems that one of the prongs in the plastic cover has worn over time (and bent), resulting in enough play that the gears pop out of place. (attachment: PlasticCoverFailWhy.png)

The unfortunate side of this is that I can't seem to find the plastic cover being sold separately from the $350 motor lid. It is absurd that a weak piece of plastic must be replaced with a $350 part. There also doesn't seem to be an easy way to fix this and keep steady pressure on the plastic cover and/or the gear so that things can function normally (it takes considerable pressure on top of the cover allow my top to open/close normally).


Notes for others
- You can access the motor cover by pulling the rear seat cushion from the car. It comes out very easily by yanking upward on the rear seat cushion.
- The plastic cover comes off very easily, working your way up from the taps nearest to the front of the car. Take care to not damage the plastic tabs.

Great post and very informative! Thanks for sharing.

Hopefully, you can find that part sold by itself instead of having to shell out the $350. If not, I'd be checking out the junk and salvage yards.
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Old 09-16-2009, 08:17 PM   #12
Bakerr14
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Top Motor

Does anyone know if the Convertible top motor controls the entire closing and opening of the convertible top or just the latching and unhinging of the top upon opening?
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Old 09-17-2009, 08:08 AM   #13
BavLar
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If your motor is ok with an external power source hooked directly to it and the fuses are ok then basic deductive reasoning suggests a short in between. When I had a similar situation they traced it down to a burned wire in between, which had been pinched or corroded. The good news was that it only cost me $250. They charged me for the repair only, not for the 4 hours it took them to track down the source of the problem.
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Old 09-17-2009, 05:14 PM   #14
Bakerr14
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The vehicle did smell of burnt wires or electronics, it's just a matter of finding it...did you go to the dealer?
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Old 09-18-2009, 08:02 AM   #15
BavLar
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Yes, but I had an aftermarket extended warranty so I wasn't too concerned about the cost. The repair was listed in their standard rate table as a minimal item, therefore it only cost $250 ($100 deductible for me). What they DIDN'T charge for was the roughly 4 hours it took their technician to find where the faulty wiring was located. That might not be typical for most dealerships. It's worth asking them if they will charge ACTUAL time versus standard rate table time, assuming what they find is detailed in their table.

If someone has a diagram showing where all the wiring is located for the top, it is certainly worth making a basic visual inspection yourself.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:39 AM   #16
trooters
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trooters View Post
There also doesn't seem to be an easy way to fix this and keep steady pressure on the plastic cover and/or the gear so that things can function normally (it takes considerable pressure on top of the cover allow my top to open/close normally).
I found a simple solution:

1. Use epoxy to repair/reinforce broken/bent plastic prongs (not shown in images)
2. A hose clamp to wrap around the motor and apply pressure
3. wooden dowels (I had extras from Ikea laying around) to convert the compression from the hose clamp into downward pressure on the plastic cover.

Images attached.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:42 AM   #17
trooters
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Originally Posted by Bakerr14 View Post
Does anyone know if the Convertible top motor controls the entire closing and opening of the convertible top or just the latching and unhinging of the top upon opening?
The motor shown in my posts are only for the lid top. It only runs during the first and last sequences of the convertible top operation (when the latches are being open and then secured.

This motor is much less expensive than the actual motor that unfolds/folds the actual ragtop.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:06 PM   #18
HRHShai
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Hey everyone,

Was hoping to get your feedback on a problem I have with the soft top of my 04 325cic

The top won't completely close because the two automatic hooks on the soft top will not engage with the top of the windshield. As of now, the top does close manually. Could I fix this problem myself? Can this problem be fixed without a trip to the dealership?
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Old 02-22-2011, 07:57 AM   #19
BavLar
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HRHShai, there are a handful of threads in here addressing similar conditions. One that I remember, which includes a youtube 'reset' procedure, is linked below. It may not address your issue but it has some similarities.

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...ight=top+reset
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Old 08-08-2011, 04:13 PM   #20
bucklas
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Many thanks!

Awesome thread and response. The description was perfect and the clamp and dowels were already in my garage. I'd only add to put a couple of wraps of electrical tape around the hose clamp where it comes close to the wires going into the box to prevent chaffing.
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