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To remove the air duct pull on it toward the right (toward the passenger foot area), a little bit up, and then forward toward the firewall. Pull hard, it will pop loose, and then wiggle it out.

(You did first remove the kick trim plate forward of the removed glove compartment, right?)

kbmw
 

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Thanks for all of your information and pictures. I could not done this without you.

I bought my FSU from RMeuropean.com for $60.28, I added a wiper blade and the shipping was free. They delivered in two days. Great service.

Be careful not to drop the torque screws, I lost one in a cut in the firewall. A #10 x 3/4" will work as a replacement.

Also be careful with all of the plastic parts, in my 7 year old 2001 330i, there were lots of brittle pieces.

Does anyone know why BMW isn't replacing these FRU's for free? They should last the lifetime of the car.

Thanks again E46fanatics. A great site.
 

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Well, I tackled this job today. I bought the FSU from Pelican parts. They offered 2 units (OE BMW or OE supplier). I bought the cheaper unit which was a Hella unit. What I pulled out was a Valeo from the car. The hardest part is not getting pissed off every time you hit your head trying to see what the hell you are doing because of the tight space. Outside of that it is an easy DIY. Make sure you have a T20 torx driver that is long enough before starting or you will have to drive with your dash apart to autozone to buy one ($4.99 Duralast). The job total was $65 against BMW wanting $300 to do it. Took about 1-2 hours however easy considering what you save in $.

Good luck to all..........
 

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Did mine today on the 10/99 328i - 2 screws and a clip held it in place. It was initially replaced with the modified/superceded unit (same as the one I put in today) in 2002 at 16K miles. I removed the glovebox door, glovebox shelf, air duct, and glovebox surround to get to it. Took <1 hr. It's nice to have heat fan control in the wife's car. I'm a hero!!
I got my FSR (as well as oil filter, brake pads, rotors & pad wear sensors) from www.SteveHaygood.com. Great pricing & logistical support (Steve's a professional mechanic as well as parts source). Give him a call: 706-647-0302.
 

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Did mine today, an E46 with manual AC adjustments. I would say the hardest part was pulling out the floor panel with the light and getting the glove box back in correctly. Also, the old FSU I pulled out had a part number, which realoem.com doesn't find, and when I do a Google search, it references an E39 FSU. Wonder what that is all about. (64118383835) Valeo part.
 

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hey guys, I have a clarification question regarding faulty FSR's.

Has ANYONE had a faulty FSR which caused the FAN DISPLAY to become erratic (not just the sound of the fan). My HVAC unit will sometimes go from 1 bar fan strength up to all 8 bars, and back again. This only happened once, but also my cabin air temp setting is WAY out of whack. i.e. set to 60F the cabin temp will usually be right around 72F.

I'm thinking the little draw fan for the thermistor in the HVAC system is broken, OR the whole friggin unit is dying on me.



Anyone with a bently manual, could you tell me if there are any other thermistors besides the ambient air outside one, and the one in the HVAC unit itself (behind the small grill opening)?? I am pretty sure one of them is bad somewhere
 

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AC blower fan was sporadic all last week at 53200 miles and so annoying. Bought online for $83 and just changed my FSR in 1.5 hours this morning.

Not sure why people were writing that they needed 3 hands putting glovebox back. I just lined it up and pushed it back in (in like 3 sec) and it held in place for me to grab the 6 screws.

WARNING: do not insert a metal screwdriver in between the FSR wiring harness and the actual FSR. I used a flathead screwdriver to pry the wire harness off (stuck) and the AC fan turned on and I got a spark.

Also, buy a compact fluorescent work light (not an incandescent one) that you can prop in the passenger footwell to see things easier and it won't give off heat or burn you working in the tight glovebox space.
 

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...Also, the old FSU I pulled out had a part number, which realoem.com doesn't find, and when I do a Google search, it references an E39 FSU. Wonder what that is all about. (64118383835) Valeo part.
That's the larger heat sink, later style FSR that's been being used in place of the more troublesome earlier version - used in the E39s and X5s. Seems they need to do some more R&D on these!
 

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Just did mine as well

Thanks for your help everyone. My fan had stopped intermittently a few times in the prior year then just went out. I was afraid it was the blower motor as I did not have any erratic behavior. Figured I could spend $80 to get it diagnosed or replace this part for $65 and if it didn't fix it I knew what the other possibility was (lots of money or a quite a bit of money and a lot of work). I got a quote for $900 to replace the blower.... Luckily I popped in a new part from Pelican (Behr brand) in my 01 and the fan works again!
 

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FSU N2 Pinouts & testing

The FSU DIY's been covered, but I couldn't find much on testing the FSU before blindly ordering the part, so I thought I'd add a few measurements.

My Bentley manual doesn't have a diagram of part "N2" - Final Stage Unit - but google will find one. The pinouts & measurements on my 2001 325i E46 w/elec HVAC are:

1 - GND to Blower motor, 0v
2 - +12v from fuse. WARNING: Live even w/key OFF.
3 - variable Control voltage from panel (~2.3 - 8.5v), increasing as you press fan ctrl up
4 - FSU ground 0v
5 - +V to Blower motor, should be around 12v.

I checked blower motor by jumpering 5-to-2, 1-to-4. Blows? Yes, Blower motor is good, FSU probably bad. No Blow? Sorry... not likely the FSU.

I tested FSU out of car: Put +12/GND on 2,4. Put 5v on pin 3. Check voltage across 1,5 with no load: 11.5v, :confused: about what I'd expect to work. BUT - test with a small load (I used a 10 ohm, 10w resistor) across 1,5 and re-check - :) - < 2v, and current thru load < 10ma, way off. My guess, blown output power semi in a PWM circuit.

BMW/San Antonio wanted $135.00 for part; I paid $65 at Pelican.
20 minutes out, 10 minutes in. Works great. Only removed 2 torx screws, but there are 3 holes - 2 thru both the FSU & the control motor, 3rd just on ctrl motor. Added.

Good luck!
 

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fixed!

Many thanks for all who have posted advice in this thread, using your help I replaced the FSR on my UK (RHD) 2001 318i in about an hour, part cost £51 discounted from dealer. Climate fan suddenly had a mind of it's own on auto or manual and this was an instant cure.
 

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Just did this today. Everyone's tips and pics were very helpful. Something I did that really made the work position comfortable was to take out the seat! Makes a big difference and it's not difficult...I was so relaxed I fell asleep under the dash.

I wore a headlight that made everything super easy to see handsfree.
 

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Thanks for your help everyone. My fan had stopped intermittently a few times in the prior year then just went out. I was afraid it was the blower motor as I did not have any erratic behavior. Figured I could spend $80 to get it diagnosed or replace this part for $65 and if it didn't fix it I knew what the other possibility was (lots of money or a quite a bit of money and a lot of work). I got a quote for $900 to replace the blower.... Luckily I popped in a new part from Pelican (Behr brand) in my 01 and the fan works again!
This is the exact problem I'm currently having except that my blower motor will kick-on after about 5 minutes. Looks like I'll be ordering the FSR unit today.

EDIT: Just ordered from Pelican Parts - $65.50 including shipping.
 

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Same symptoms on wifey 325i (erratic fan speeds) and I replaced it yesterday thanks to everyone tips and tricks on this forum, awesome group here. I am usually on the E39 and Rennlist 996 forum. I found my new part on Ebay from "deutschepartusa" for $47.49 + $10 shipping, and it's made from Germany (Hamburg-Technic), great deal... Now the fan speed is working great again. Looks like this FSU issue is extremely common for these cars and the E39 as well. I already replaced it on my E39 too. Cheers,
 

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Installed the FSU tonight and it took exactly 1 hour. Pulled out the heater duct, but dislocated a rod on some type of acutator for the heating/air system...I couldn't see this behind the duct. Rod went back in OK and onto the actuator. Re-installing the duct was much easier than pulling it out.

Like most said in previous posts this is a relatively easy DIY, but it helps to be a contortionist to do this. :)
 

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I just changed my FSU on my 2000 323. The instructions helped me A LOT!! My question now is... I got all the screws back in but I could not get the plastic tab to hook back on to the new FSU. Its almost like it would not go all the way in. Anyone else had this issue??
 

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My final stage resistor just went out today at around 53000 miles :mad: I lost my fan speed control, just runs full blast. I ordered the part on eBay for only $49.75 shipped, it's made in Germany by Meyle.

I'm not looking forward to installing it
 

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Installed part I got from deutsche too but it arrived with a little plastic piece next to the metal rods broken off. They told me to try installing it before exchanging it and I did. Fan works fine, but does anyone else have a weird sound when the fan turns on initially. Never had the sound before.
 

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I just changed my FSU on my 2000 323. The instructions helped me A LOT!! My question now is... I got all the screws back in but I could not get the plastic tab to hook back on to the new FSU. Its almost like it would not go all the way in. Anyone else had this issue??
It took a little work to get the FSU to be held in place by the tab. I took a flat head screwdriver and gently pushed the tab back while pushing the FSU that last few milimeters into place.
 
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