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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 09-24-2014, 11:17 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: UCLA/Bay Area
Posts: 42
My Ride: carbon black e46 m3
DIY: Quick Fixes that provide even more enjoyment...


I have compiled a list of quick fixes that provide even more enjoyment of our vehicles:

If your carpets are sliding around or bunching up even after using the OEM carpet anchors, then superglue heavy duty velcro tape to the back of the carpets:

If your interior panels are squeaking, rattling, or vibrating, then use "peel and seel" to stick to all the panels that are noisy:

If your center console, cup holders, or any centerpiece is getting flaky, then use fine grit sandpaper to sand off the top layer of the protective film.

If your rear panel under the rear window is squeaking, chirping, rattling, or banging, then stick tennis balls through the trunk speaker holes to absorb the sound and buttress the panels up.

If your passenger seat thigh support is rattling while driving, then lean back the chair until almost flat and slide chair all the way back.

Audio system:
If you have already replaced tweeters in your car numerous times and you want a permanent fix without affecting sound quality, then next time put clear "Sure flex" on the surrounding circular area from the black plastic mount that holds the tweeter itself to the paper cone. The "Sure flex" will reinforce the weak foam surrounding the paper cone.

Engine bay:
If you installed an aftermarket intake and your car is stuttering, hesitating, choking, idling weird, or sudden powerloss, then check to make sure you reinstalled the "grid waffle" shaped wind splitter inside the intake arm.

If your front kidney grills are coming loose, then zip tie them to the holes near the mounts.

If your car is throwing out EML lights and the DSC traction light randomly even after fixing the car, then also check your battery connection cable to make sure fully secured to terminal, and make sure your battery is good.

If your hands are getting dirty after working on your car, then keep a pair of mechanic gloves laying on top of the roadside tools under the trunk lid:

If your subwoofer is sliding around the rear of the trunk when you are driving, then stick heavy duty velcro to the bottom of the subwoofer to keep it in place.

Key remote problems:
If your key remote is not working even after fresh new batteries, then google "E46 reinitialize key."

If your key remote not working after fresh new battery, or reinitializing key, then try unplugging fuel door actuator in the trunk or hood sensor because likely shorting the circuit.

If your key remote is low on battery from non-use, then leave it on top of a Sonicare toothbrush charger for at least 30+ hours:

Door problems:
If your door pin sometimes gets stuck when locking/unlocking, then put a wad of permatex grease on the door pin and the door lock actuator:

Heating, Venting, and air conditioning:
If your heater is turning on by itself random even when car is off, then replace the "heater final stage resistor."

If your exhaust seems to be drooping on one side, then buy new exhaust hangers because one of them is possibly cracked:

Emblem replacement:
If your are replacing emblems and want to have OEM placement, then create a template:

Interior styling:
If your want your interior to look to even more exotic, then get carbon fiber interior trim and Eurotray:

If you want the interior to have that crisp new car feel, then change all the bulbs to LED:

If you want your car to "feel" brand new again when driving, then get new shift knob and new brake handle:

If you want the key to look even cooler, then carbon fiber wrap the key:

If you want to spend only 30 minutes of installation to make your car look completely different on the inside, then get a d99 Dynavin DIN, and just plug it and move your HVAC control to the lower slot. Furthermore, you'll get bluetooth audio, reverse backup camera, android software, etc. Although the d99 does not have as friendly or as much options as other DIN's (pioneer, kenwood, eclipse, etc.), the factory OEM look is amazing, and the install is unbelievably quick. This d99 install was almost as fast as my dice media bridge installation.

If you are going to be carrying tons of stuff from the trunk after parking and know your hands will be too full, then when you open the trunk, push lock button on remote first, grab your stuff, then just close the trunk because car will be locked when you walk away.

If you know the car will be super hot from parking under the sun and you need to drive it, then hold button number 1 on the remote to roll down all windows and let cool before enter, then turn on the AC to cool it down further before you get in.

If you want to be able to close all your windows and sunroof with the press of the middle remote button, then get a BMW SCANNER to program this option.

If you want your car to "beep" when arming/disarming the alarm system, so you can located your car easier, then get a BMW SCANNER to program this option.

If you want your key remote to unlock all doors with only one press of unlock remote, then get a BMW SCANNER to program this option.

If you want your car to automatically lock the doors when going 15mph, then get a BMW SCANNER to program this option.

If you are starting to get bored of your car, then realize there are people in this world who would love to have the car you are driving right now and put yourself in their shoes.

If you feel anxiety, anger, or frustration when someone intentionally cuts you off when driving, then realize they do so because of an unresolved subconscious "inferiority complex." Understand, the ego, the external image we have identified with ourselves feels insulted, our instinct is to protect that ego identification of the image by cutting them off or retaliating. BUT instead of retaliating or defending yourself, do nothing. Allow the "self"-image to remain diminished and become alert to what that feels like deep inside you. The pain will make you want to go unconscious/sleep/explode, but stay conscious through the pain and "do nothing and just watch your reactions," this will increase your TRUE "SELF (capital S-E-L-F)" confidence as you root yourself into true pure witnessing awareness (SELF). Try this exercise when someone cuts you off in traffic. It's totally pointless to retaliate, you must realize that it's the small "self" ego being injured; it's not you (capital S-E-L-F). It injures the small "self" ego, but "Deep down, you know that it's not you (S-E-L-F). It's just the small "self" ego-image of who I "think" I am." This exercise will free you forever from idiots on the road and liberate you with ZEN precision as you transmute "self" anxiety, anger, and frustration into TRUE S-E-L-F awareness and liberation. Your vehicle will literally become a "vehicle" to enlightenment.

If you have fear/anxiety about the car getting stolen or damaged, then you have become too attached to your car, so " the car possesses you" and "you do not possess the car," so just remember new things come when we consciously let go of the old. We cannot enjoy something when we are possessed/too attached to by that something.

If you are only driving the car on special days or saving miles on your car, then you are missing the point of having the car because you are supposed to be living in the moment of enjoying the driving experience of the car. People who are saving miles on the car, in truth and in effect, are "unknowingly/unintentionally" pushing/saving happiness for the future and this is a major fallacy because the future only exists in the mind. Furthermore, in truth and in effect, keeping your car mint, just burdens you and benefits the "next" owner who will fully enjoy a mint car as its supposed to be enjoyed. Happiness is now, not in the future.

Headlights upgrade:
If you do a lot of night driving, then consider upgrading the OEM 35 watt ballast to an 55 or 75 watt ballast to produce more light output.

Useful stuff to have in trunk:
If you are in the middle of nowhere and your tire goes flat, then make sure you have green tire slime: https://www.google.com/search?q=gree...een+tire+slime

If you are in the middle of nowhere and your battery goes dead after listening to the sound system too long, then make sure you have a portable car battery charger:

Rear fender rubbing tires:
If your rear fender is rubbing the tires, you love the wheels, you have and have already rolled fenders, then use a dremel and shave off the remaining rear fender lip.

Hiding wads of money or other expensive items:
If you want to hide wads of money or other expensive items inside your vehicle, then the ebrake leather cover or the shifter leather cover comes out very easily by pulling upwards:

Driving spiritedly:
If you are driving spiritedly and getting extreme amounts of anxiety from being lasered, then get a Valentine 1 radar detector:

Although some of the above fixes are not permanent or "OEM quality," the quick fixes will help reduce the nuisances tremendously.

Although some people may say "It's not what you drive but what drives you," my response is what drives me is perfection, so that is why I chose what I drive. I seek to make it even more perfect each day.

Please feel free to update this list with any other clever ideas.


All the best.


Last edited by mrpinstripsuits; 10-05-2014 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 09-24-2014, 11:39 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Suburbia, NJ
Posts: 3,863
My Ride: M3
Good idea.

Lets keep this going.
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Old 09-26-2014, 10:58 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Fort Lee, NJ
Posts: 335
My Ride: 2005 330xi
I drive spiritedly, but I use an Escort.

If you want to increase your key fob signal length, just put the tip of the key to your chin when you press the button. Your head will extend the range of the key.

Hardwire a 3 port cigarette power adapter from under your seat and into a 12v cable under the cupholder/handbrake console. Make sure the power cable you select is switched off with the car so you don't drain your batteries. Now all of your accessories can be routed under the seat for a clean look.

Get this cheap coat hanger for your car, works great. A genuine BMW coat hanger is $90. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Get the iOttie phone mount for your car. I have 2, for each BMW. The suction cup is strong enough to go right onto your textured dashboard. It's rated the best phone holder on Gizmodo. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

If you ever want a hardwired USB port in your car, get this. I use this to mount a dashcam behind my rearview mirror. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

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Old 09-26-2014, 11:18 PM   #4
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Old 10-01-2014, 02:35 PM   #5
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 5
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stealing this one: If your interior panels are squeaking, rattling, or vibrating, then use "peel and seel" to stick to all the panels that are noisy.

Thanks mrpinstripsuits!
Located in Phoenix, AZ I work on car graphics and vehicle wraps. I also love BMW's, we've been working with a local BMW Club and helping them turn their not so fresh cars into almost new looking rides. Totally love it!

Here is a ride we totally changed into something to be proud of.

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Old 10-05-2014, 06:51 AM   #6
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One of the best threads I have seen in a long time, keep it going

Where/ how do u grease the door actuators?

How do u turn on AC without getting in the car?

Last edited by BDUB328I; 10-05-2014 at 07:03 AM.
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Old 10-05-2014, 01:09 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by BDUB328I View Post
One of the best threads I have seen in a long time, keep it going

Where/ how do u grease the door actuators?

How do u turn on AC without getting in the car?
Squeeze the permatex grease into the area where the door actuator has the externally accessible moving parts (the part that is exposed in the door frame).
See the following picture for an idea, but ignore the red arrows:

If you have remote start, then you can turn on the car without getting inside the car. The car when turned on should also turn on the AC since this assumes you had the AC on before you shut the car off when driving on a hot day. However, you can also stick your arm inside the open window (this is technically not "getting into the car," but reaching into the car) and turn on the car to activate the AC with the same assumption from above. You may have to get a BMW Scanner to program the ability to start the car without pressing the clutch.

All the best.


Last edited by mrpinstripsuits; 10-05-2014 at 01:14 PM.
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Old 10-15-2014, 11:07 PM   #8
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Location: Pleasanton, CA
Posts: 23
My Ride: E46 M3, E63 M6
Great thread OP! Even though most of this I already knew, there were plenty of useful things I acquired for my own benefit. Thanks!
2003 E46 M3 TiAg/Dove 6MT

Purchased:11/13 with 58k miles

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