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Discussion Starter #1
I will start off by saying that the reason i replaced the cable was that one of them had a lot of play in it to the point where it would not tighten at the adjustment point. The cable would still work if operated by hand, yet there was no way to get it tight or snug at the center motor connection point.
Call it what you want, Maintenance or repair but i did not like what i was seeing from one of cables and for 30min of my time and a few bucks it is an easy fix.. So lets get started....
Before you even start dealing with the cables i suggest you do the items listed below for access and to make the job easier. READ THIS WHOLE DIY FIRST.
It will be easier.
If its your first time taking the seat and panels out just you tube it and you will find a step by step on how to do each item in steps 1 thru 4.
Step 1. Open your top and stow it away.
Step 2. Unlock the latches to the rear hatch and open it. PLEASE support it so it does not close on you while working. A piece of wood can move, be hit or shift. So use something that will not move. Pillows, big foam blocks, milk crate. This will hurt you if it comes crashing down so get it right.
Step 3. Remove rear seat. Center section then bottom and top in that order.
Step 4. Remove your rear interior side panels. (you tube it, its there). Remove center section, be careful with your tweeter connection, then top section then the lower in that order. I have included some pictures just for refreshments.
There is two things you need to be very careful with prior to removing your rear top panels, i have provided two pictures to remind you, make sure you disconnect the spring on the sliding doors and also the rubber piece at the door jam so you don't rip it.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
What you should have now is what you see in the first picture below a clean work area with rear seat and side panels removed and the rear hatch supported in the open position.
The next step i performed was to remove the three bolts that secure the rear motor that controls the latches under the back seat.
I have a metal cover on my motor so it is required to reach the cables but it is more then likely you have the OEM black plastic cover on yours. Don't worry you will not have to remove the motor, but you will have to OPEN that FRONT PART of the black cover to reach the cables to remove them. There are two tabs at the front sides. To open it, just pull to the sides and lift the front cover up, like a flap door. CAUTION! If you decide to take off the whole cover It is held on with plastic tabs all around it, so with your hands and a flat head go lifting the tabs all around it, so you don't break them, TILL THE COVER COMES OFF.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The next step after removing or opening up the front cover is to align the motor so you can remove the cables. The process is simple just insert the oem allen wrench in the slot provided at the motor and turn it till the brass arm is all the way to the front as you see in the picture. Some of you will need to push on the rear button to release the unit. Either way you need the arm forward to remove the cables.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
At this point you should have both cables free from the motor and ready to replace the cables. I suggest you do one side at a time to get familiar with the routing. If you have a broken cable on one side do the other first. The hardest side to do at least for me was the drivers side and that took just a few extra minutes only.
Get familiar with the cable ends, i have provided a picture just in case you forget, lolol.
The cable can only put in one way, from the lock side not the interior side.(READ THAT AGAIN) So if thats there case, it must be removed from the lock side out.
First start by freeing up the old cable on the inside of the car it is routed from the motor thru a holding clip then a small tunnel then down the front lower sections of the seat behind the carpet to the side of the car.
SPECIAL NOTE: if you noticed when removing the cables going to the motor the cables crossed each other and the right cable went to the left side of the motor and the left went to the right. That is normal, it is primarily due to placing less tension on the cable itself due to the bend and your going to reinstall it the same way.
Open all the tie wraps (I SAID OPEN THEM) Don't cut them.. free up the cable up to point where it disappears behind the sound proofing material then stop.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
At this point you should have the complete cable loose inside the car.
Now we move to the locks. There are two allen bolts that hold both locks in place. The picture shows the location of both. One is toward the front and the other one is located at the bottom rear toward the outside.
I used a 5mm allen 4-3/4 LENGTH to loosen the top bolt first, then i used the same allen wrench with a 3/8 combination wrench for leverage to loosen the lower one. If you have longer allen wrench you won't need the combination.
Remember loosen don't remove.
First my Kudos to Taylor for giving me the idea in his DIY hydraulic section to use a magnet so the bolts won't fall into the Tops endless cavern. I have a telescopic magnet and placed it next to the bolts while unscrewing. Once they where loose the magnets pulled the bolts out.
Once both bolts are out your home free:excited:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Now with both bolts out the whole unit will come out.
There is an electric connection tail on it, you can pull the unit out just enough with out disconnecting it. Lay the unit off toward the inside NOT the outside unless you don't care about your paint.
The next step is to access the grommet and guide clip behind the noise insulation inside the car.
Carefully work the insulation forward from the corner just enough to reach your hand inside, there is no need to tear the complete insulation off, so don't.
look at the pictures below and notice how much of it i pulled forward and whats behind there. Once you do that disconnect the cable from the guide and push the cable and grommet to the lock side just enough so everything is free.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So everything now is free the cable, the lock and all clips and grommets.
There are some guys who say just cut the cable and be done with it, you can if you like but theres two reasons why i did not. One is i wanted to see the cable route and how everything was attached and two when you cut a steel cable it tends to form a very sharp edge and that cuts and scratches what ever it hits and it just takes one bad move. So i elected not to cut.
Flip the locking unit over in your hand
The next step is removing the old cable from the lock. It has two things, one is a slide lock at the pivot point and a plug in guide.
Do the slide lock first so the cable does not move on you. I just bent one side of the slide lock and bend it down with a set of needle nose then after i just compressed the two side pins on the guide and pushed it downward and out.
Your done with the old cable now slide it out and be careful with your paint.
I would tell you to tie a string to it to help you put in the new one but it really is not necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Your new cable will come with a grommet as in the picture. Slide it toward the lock side connection point just about 15 inches from the end should be enough.
Remember what i said earlier, the cable comes out one way and goes in one way.
Start to slide your new cable in FROM THE LOCK SIDE!(I laid mine over the seat area while feeding it to protect the paint.) Don't worry about trying to clip it or tie wrapping, just start feeding it thru the grommet hole and inside the car using the same route that it came out from, along the side, thru the noise insulation down the floor and towards that channel near the motor.
A small trick i used when i lost sight of the grommet hole on the drivers side i just put a flashlight to the hole and i was able to locate it.
Once you have most of the cable layed out the next step is the tricky part you must have some of the grommet sticking back into the car so you can pull on it and have it seat properly.
Now go ahead and hook up your new cable to the lock, the guide first, then the slide lock.
Now work the lock back to its point of origin and with your other hand be pulling on the cable from the inside behind the sound insulation near the grommet to pull out any slack.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The next step is install the two bolts that hold the locks in place.
I used the magnet method again just to place the bolts and then came behind with the allen wrench. I did not tighten it until i had both threads started.
Note: The bolts left a mark on the lock units and i used those marks as a reference point for alignment. Once they where snug i came behind with the combination wrench setup used to remove them. Then i installed the cable on the guide behind the insulation, replaced insulation and went tie wrapping and finalizing everything toward the motor. The rest is History, Hook up your new cables to the motor reinstall the motor, side panels ,and seats and thats it. As for the adjustment i left mine snug and also take this time to grease the locks and motor.
I hope you enjoyed it and i hope it helps you out. It is Sunday and i have to go work on my nieces car :tsk:....By the way this is done at your own risk i take no responsibly stated or implied, i love that part lololol.
 

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Yo Adrian, a fantastic DIY write up - a very clearly written description and a very well illustrated process, although, I hope that I never need to actually refer to it for cause. So far so good with my top open / close operation. Is this your car or your nieces car. If it's your nieces, she is one lucky girl to have you do all the work on it that you do! Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you Greg and yes it is my nieces Car. I getting Tired, but i am trying get all the small stuff taken care of now less work later for me.
 
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