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Old 09-28-2012, 05:48 PM   #1
surveyranger
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Join Date: Sep 2012
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My Ride: 2003 BMW 325i Sedan
Another door (un)lock problem

I did a search first and read through other posts about door lock problems, but haven't found someone with the same problems. I don't have problems with interior lights, windshield washers, or the trunk lid. The car doesn't have an alarm or remote start. I'm the original owner so I'm familiar with the work done on the car.
The doors have issues (un)locking in hot weather or when sitting out under the sun for awhile in the southern U.S. When I say problems (un)locking, that includes using the key fob, key in door handle, central button, and inside door handles.
If I walk up to the car & hit the unlock button, there is a sound like the doors unlock but none of the door locks pop up on any of the doors. Then, I stick the key into either front door, and sometimes I have luck getting the lock to come up enough to get the door open. Other times, I just have to wait a couple hours and try again.
Once inside, pulling the inside door handle on ANY of the doors doesn't cause them to unlock and open. Pushing the central (un)lock button doesn't make a noise or cause anything to (un)lock. Beating my head on the steering wheel didn't fix the problem.
The door locks start working after starting the car and letting it run for a few minutes.
I haven't tried rolling down the windows while this is happening because I've been focused on getting the passenger side door open so my wife can get in. The problem doesn't happen regularly though, so I can't predict when it will happen. This really hampers troubleshooting. The weather is in the 70's and everything (key fob & locks) is working fine.

Any suggestions? Thanks.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:44 AM   #2
surveyranger
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wow, this is a busy board.
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Old 10-01-2012, 10:58 AM   #3
scarede46er
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Try lubricating the pushpins of the lock. They can get gummed up sometimes. Your GM5 module might also be bad. There is a cheap enough service to fix that one though.
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:33 AM   #4
surveyranger
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I can lubricate the lock's pushpins to see if that helps. However, if they were gummed up, then wouldn't I have this problem all the time instead of when it's just hot outside?
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Old 10-01-2012, 01:01 PM   #5
Drewfus2101
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I've got similar problems. They happen then go away for a year or so.

Most likely is GM5. Send it off and let 'ole dude fix it for you . I took apart the doors and tried putting white lithium grease on everything. Didn't help at all. Just made a huge mess.

Also, when mine does this, and I finally get back into the car, here is how I fix it. I keep hitting the central locking button until it starts working. Then keep pushing the button. It's kinda like it works out the kinks. It doesn't happen for a LONG time after that. Not a good long-term solution, but ok for a while.
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Old 10-01-2012, 01:29 PM   #6
surveyranger
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Did you send your GM5 off? If so, did it fix the problem? Once I get into the car, start it, and wait a few minutes, then everything works fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drewfus2101 View Post
I've got similar problems. They happen then go away for a year or so.

Most likely is GM5. Send it off and let 'ole dude fix it for you . I took apart the doors and tried putting white lithium grease on everything. Didn't help at all. Just made a huge mess.

Also, when mine does this, and I finally get back into the car, here is how I fix it. I keep hitting the central locking button until it starts working. Then keep pushing the button. It's kinda like it works out the kinks. It doesn't happen for a LONG time after that. Not a good long-term solution, but ok for a while.
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Old 10-02-2012, 02:04 AM   #7
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From my experience if the door locks fails to unlock and the problem comes and goes then it's the general module. It's not the actuator, it's not something that needs to be lubed.

If the problem is failure to unlock and it's a solid failure (not intermittent) then it's most likely a bad actuator. This is more common on coupes and convertibles for some reason.
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Old 10-02-2012, 08:00 AM   #8
IrunBimmer
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I have that problem to but the doors don't unlock in all weather it's a pain in the ass
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:19 AM   #9
surveyranger
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Thanks for the input scottjoh. Is there anyway to troubleshoot/verify before repairing/replacing the GM? I can get to the GM & I have tools including a multimeter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottjoh View Post
From my experience if the door locks fails to unlock and the problem comes and goes then it's the general module. It's not the actuator, it's not something that needs to be lubed.

If the problem is failure to unlock and it's a solid failure (not intermittent) then it's most likely a bad actuator. This is more common on coupes and convertibles for some reason.
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Old 10-02-2012, 10:13 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surveyranger View Post
Thanks for the input scottjoh. Is there anyway to troubleshoot/verify before repairing/replacing the GM? I can get to the GM & I have tools including a multimeter.
Your problem is intermittent, multiple doors of your 03 4-dr sedan do not unlock, worse in hot weather. That problem IS the general module!

There troubleshot!

Last edited by scottjoh; 10-02-2012 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 10-08-2012, 10:43 PM   #11
surveyranger
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Thanks for helping to clear that up. I'm away from the house for a couple months. Guess I'll take care of it when I get back.
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Last edited by surveyranger; 10-08-2012 at 10:43 PM.
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Old 06-06-2013, 09:27 PM   #12
surveyranger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by surveyranger View Post
Thanks for helping to clear that up. I'm away from the house for a couple months. Guess I'll take care of it when I get back.
Thanks Scott! Awesome turn-around on the module and quick responses. Sent it priority on Tuesday and had it back before Friday. The instructions made it easy to remove/install, and I didn't break anything. Bring on the summer heat!
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