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E46 Convertible
The E46 vert forum. Talk about dropping your E46 top here.

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Old 11-19-2015, 11:54 AM   #1
A111
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Top Will Not Open or Close

Hi Guys,

I have an 03. Last night I went to close my top. The closing procedure began immediately and was 95% done, when all of the sudden it stopped. The top was about 1" from the top of the windshield when it stopped. The LED was blinking red. At this point, the buttons would no longer close or open the top.

I manually pulled the rest down and locked it with an allen key. Once it was sufficiently locked, the red LED stopped blinking. I immediately tried again to open it, and I would get a solid red LED as long as the "open" button was pressed. As soon as I let go, the LED goes out.

There is no noise when the button is pressed. No motors or sounds of anything moving or getting unlocked. The windows do not roll down either when pressing the "open" button for the convertible.

Yes, I checked the tray in the trunk. I opened and closed it several times. I let the car sit overnight and still nothing. The trunk is closed.

Anybody have some insight? Thanks so much in advance for your help!

Last edited by A111; 11-19-2015 at 11:56 AM.
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Old 11-19-2015, 12:30 PM   #2
taylor192
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Old 11-19-2015, 12:51 PM   #3
A111
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Thanks Chris. I'll check the wiring. Does it make sense that no noises or activity occurs when pressing the open button (besides for a solid red LED)?
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Old 11-19-2015, 01:04 PM   #4
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Thanks Chris. I'll check the wiring. Does it make sense that no noises or activity occurs when pressing the open button (besides for a solid red LED)?
It doesn't, although until you eliminate the wiring lets not guess at other potential causes.
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Old 11-19-2015, 01:11 PM   #5
A111
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It doesn't, although until you eliminate the wiring lets not guess at other potential causes.
Thanks. Will check tonight and will report back what I find.
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Old 11-22-2015, 10:22 AM   #6
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Just like to update everyone here. I planned to check out the wiring harness today. I got in my car to move it so I can begin working on it. But before that I decided, let me just first press the buttons and see if the top will go down.

Lo and behold upon pressing the open button, the top lock disengaged, all the windows went down and the top opened flawlessly. I then closed it. And then opened it and closed it. I dint this 11 times in a row and it worked perfectly without a hitch each time.

I didn't end up needing to check the wiring or anything. Truthfully I'm baffled. What could have happened the other night when I tried to close/open it?

Everything seems to be working fine now.

Last edited by A111; 11-22-2015 at 11:32 AM.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:11 AM   #7
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Sometimes when I open or close my top using key fob, the key will loose contact with the car, and the top will stop moving. Usually if I push and hold the key button again it will start moving again. Sometimes I have to get in car, start it, then finish process using the buttons inside. I think perhaps the car does a CVM module check when the car is first turned on. I suspect that perhaps when the top is out of sync with what the computer thinks that turning the car off and back on will often get them back in sync. Or you could have a bad wire that has only shown itself once so far.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:34 AM   #8
A111
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Sometimes when I open or close my top using key fob, the key will loose contact with the car, and the top will stop moving. Usually if I push and hold the key button again it will start moving again. Sometimes I have to get in car, start it, then finish process using the buttons inside. I think perhaps the car does a CVM module check when the car is first turned on. I suspect that perhaps when the top is out of sync with what the computer thinks that turning the car off and back on will often get them back in sync. Or you could have a bad wire that has only shown itself once so far.
I never used the key fob before. Always using the dash buttons. I didn't even move the car from the last time I tried to open/close the top. I literally started my car today (after 3 days) and pressed the open button and it worked.

Hoping that it was just a sync error with the CVM that just reset in it own. I highly doubt it is the wiring.

Last edited by A111; 11-22-2015 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:45 AM   #9
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If your finger slipped off the button when you were closing it the first time it failed, it could be like the key losing contact with the car.

your "my ride" says 335i vert, so this could not be relevant to you. But the E46 vert wires do tend to break after time. Often times the break is not visible. The cover is still intact, the insulation is still intact, the wire inside breaks due to repeated motion. The wires inside will then make intermittent contact. Intermittent problems are the hardest to diagnose
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:52 AM   #10
A111
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If your finger slipped off the button when you were closing it the first time it failed, it could be like the key losing contact with the car.

your "my ride" says 335i vert, so this could not be relevant to you. But the E46 vert wires do tend to break after time. Often times the break is not visible. The cover is still intact, the insulation is still intact, the wire inside breaks due to repeated motion. The wires inside will then make intermittent contact. Intermittent problems are the hardest to diagnose
My finger did not slip. I did not use the key. Please see previous post. Also, my first port mentions that I have an 03. I wouldn't come here asking for help on my 335i vert.
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Old 11-22-2015, 11:57 AM   #11
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I'm glad your problem with the '03 went away

Last edited by dknightd; 11-22-2015 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:02 PM   #12
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Hoping that it was just a sync error with the CVM that just reset in it own. I highly doubt it is the wiring.
Ugh. I wish the myth "resetting" or "syncing" the CVM would go away. The CVM does not store state, hell it doesn't even store the fault codes after the vehicle is turned off. The CVM does system checks when turned on, and when operating. If it's suddenly working, one of those checks is now passing.

Intermittent problems are likely wiring issues. Ignore to your peril.
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Old 11-22-2015, 12:17 PM   #13
dknightd
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Ugh. The CVM does not store state, hell it doesn't even store the fault codes after the vehicle is turned off. The CVM does system checks when turned on, and when operating.
I think perhaps this is the key. The CVM essentially resets itself every time you turn the key to ACC. If it gets confused while operating it will flash the light. If you turn car off then back on it seems to magically figure where top is and happily continue operation. Assuming a wire or sensor is not broken.

Of course I could be wrong.
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Old 11-23-2015, 08:45 PM   #14
A111
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Ugh. I wish the myth "resetting" or "syncing" the CVM would go away. The CVM does not store state, hell it doesn't even store the fault codes after the vehicle is turned off. The CVM does system checks when turned on, and when operating. If it's suddenly working, one of those checks is now passing.

Intermittent problems are likely wiring issues. Ignore to your peril.
Ok thanks for that. I will continue to monitor it and will update here if anything changes.
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