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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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  #1  
Old 10-20-2010, 07:25 PM
nosteiner4me nosteiner4me is offline
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Mein Auto: 2011 335i convertible
2011 335i convertible leaks in carwash

Anyone else got a hard top convertible that leaks bad in
a car wash...... dealer tested 3 of them and they all leaked pretty
bad in a brushless car wash. They said to stay away from
high pressure brushless car wash......Thought i bought a BMW
and yes this was my first BMW....
Love the car though
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  #2  
Old 10-20-2010, 07:27 PM
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DSXMachina DSXMachina is offline
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  #3  
Old 10-20-2010, 07:33 PM
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cwinter cwinter is offline
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Most convertibles will have water leaking in using high pressure car washes. Some may leak more than others. Some may never leak. Some may leak from day one or develop it later.

Our G35 coupe has doors with frame-less glass. The glass presses against a rubber seal in the frame and shifts slightly up under the roof-line when you close the door. The doors leak some water going through high pressure car washes but nothing that couldn't be handled. The car never leaked water driving in rain. I believe the manual even stated to stay away from high pressure car washes.

I don't think it's a BMW specific problem but a convertible specific problem. You bought a car without a proper roof. That being said, I have seen some videos with literal water falls inside the cabin in the hard top convertible. Yikes!

Oh, and I second DSX's (even though I mostly despise popcorn)
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Last edited by cwinter; 10-20-2010 at 07:35 PM.
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  #4  
Old 10-20-2010, 07:40 PM
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Chop362 Chop362 is offline
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What the hell are you thinking taking it to a car wash anyways?If I can't wash it myself i let it stay dirty.Only fools take their bimmers to the car wash.Car wash?
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  #5  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:12 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chop362 View Post
What the hell are you thinking taking it to a car wash anyways?If I can't wash it myself i let it stay dirty.Only fools take their E93's to the car wash.Car wash?
Fixed.

Seriously OP, did you not read the manual where it specifically states taking it to an automatic car wash is not recommended?
I get a few drips in at the A-pillar junction using the garden hose. There is no way on God's green earth my cabrio will ever see an automatic carwash.
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Last edited by Nordic_Kat; 10-20-2010 at 08:15 PM.
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  #6  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:22 PM
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DSXMachina DSXMachina is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic_Kat View Post
Fixed.

Seriously OP, did you not read the manual where it specifically states taking it to an automatic car wash is not recommended?
I get a few drips in at the A-pillar junction using the garden hose. There is no way on God's green earth my cabrio will ever see an automatic carwash.
The OP has not yet learned of our fanatical memorization of every paragraph in the owner's manual. Go easy, Kat.
Hey C-dub, pass that popcorn back willya, sheesh, what a hog!

Last edited by DSXMachina; 10-20-2010 at 08:24 PM.
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  #7  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:26 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSXMachina View Post
The OP has not yet learned of our fanatical memorization of every paragraph in the owner's manual. Go easy, Kat.
Hey C-dub, pass that popcorn back willya, sheesh, what a hog!
My bad. Eidetic memory is sometimes a liability.
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  #8  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:32 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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OP, welcome to the world of marginal convertible top seals. Let me guess - the leaks are at the junction where the top attaches to the A-pillar/Windshield frame? There is a reason why I am an ex-E93 owner. Mine was repurchased under California's Lemon Law after 4 failed repair attempts for leaking (at the same A-pillar/Windshield frame). If you want to see what a real convertible top seal should look like, check out the seal on the new Z4.

BMW NA would rather that you just suck it up and suffer in silence about the top leaks. But if you live in California, there is hope for you. Get 4 failed repair attempts, send a written notice along to the contact address in the warranty booklet and get a good lemon law attorney and you too can be free of the marginal top seal problem.

Good luck in your efforts.

EDIT: I just noticed that the OP is not in California. Bummer. You may have to just suck it up.

Last edited by anE934fun; 10-20-2010 at 08:33 PM. Reason: See EDIT:
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  #9  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:34 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DSXMachina View Post
The OP has not yet learned of our fanatical memorization of every paragraph in the owner's manual. Go easy, Kat.
Hey C-dub, pass that popcorn back willya, sheesh, what a hog!
Especially when CW doesn't like popcorn that much....
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  #10  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:35 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anE934fun View Post
Especially when CW doesn't like popcorn that much....
Ha! I noticed that too.
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  #11  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:38 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwinter View Post
Most convertibles will have water leaking in using high pressure car washes. Some may leak more than others. Some may never leak. Some may leak from day one or develop it later.

Our G35 coupe has doors with frame-less glass. The glass presses against a rubber seal in the frame and shifts slightly up under the roof-line when you close the door. The doors leak some water going through high pressure car washes but nothing that couldn't be handled. The car never leaked water driving in rain. I believe the manual even stated to stay away from high pressure car washes.

I don't think it's a BMW specific problem but a convertible specific problem. You bought a car without a proper roof. That being said, I have seen some videos with literal water falls inside the cabin in the hard top convertible. Yikes!

Oh, and I second DSX's (even though I mostly despise popcorn)
See my post about the roof-to-windshield frame seal on the Z4. That is a proper roof seal.
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  #12  
Old 10-20-2010, 08:45 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Do the coupes and sedans have frameless windows? I was a little curious about this when I was contemplating window tinting and never resolved my curiosity.
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  #13  
Old 10-20-2010, 09:27 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic_Kat View Post
Do the coupes and sedans have frameless windows? I was a little curious about this when I was contemplating window tinting and never resolved my curiosity.
Coupes have the frameless windows, but sedans have a frame.
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  #14  
Old 10-20-2010, 11:03 PM
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beden1 beden1 is offline
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I'm guilty of taking my 335is convertible to the automatic car wash and it does not have any leaks. It's tight as a drum, fortunately.

We have a very good local car wash that has not caused any damage to any of our cars or SUVs in 15 years . Most of the area dealers take their new cars there for prep and detailing.

After the car wash, I bring them home and do a complete detail with either Lucas Slick Mist or Meguiar's Ultimate Spray Detailer.

No scratches or swirl marks, or etc.

The only car I don't take to the auto car wash is my ZO6 because it is very low to the ground in the front and the wheels/tires are very wide. Plus, it's just a really cool car!
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  #15  
Old 10-21-2010, 05:08 AM
BMW603 BMW603 is offline
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odd really--

I have a jeep wrangler and it doesn't leak. (and in winter I drive thru auto brush-less washes, again no leaks.)
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  #16  
Old 10-21-2010, 07:35 AM
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Blubaron79 Blubaron79 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic_Kat View Post
Fixed.

Seriously OP, did you not read the manual where it specifically states taking it to an automatic car wash is not recommended?
I get a few drips in at the A-pillar junction using the garden hose. There is no way on God's green earth my cabrio will ever see an automatic carwash.
+1 even advises against high pressure washes for coupes.

The pressure pushes the seals aside. Something that will never occur in real world driving.
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  #17  
Old 10-21-2010, 08:08 AM
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beden1 beden1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blubaron79 View Post
+1 even advises against high pressure washes for coupes.

The pressure pushes the seals aside. Something that will never occur in real world driving.
BMW seems to make excuses for nearly everything! I just brought my wife's 535xi in for service. It's funny that I just a saw the detailing department at my BMW dealer spray washing a car with a power washer!

Oh, and the gas they sell in the US gets blamed for everything else!
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  #18  
Old 10-21-2010, 08:16 AM
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Eights-n-Aces Eights-n-Aces is offline
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Not worth commenting...read the manual.
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  #19  
Old 10-21-2010, 09:44 AM
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Blubaron79 Blubaron79 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beden1 View Post
BMW seems to make excuses for nearly everything! I just brought my wife's 535xi in for service. It's funny that I just a saw the detailing department at my BMW dealer spray washing a car with a power washer!

Oh, and the gas they sell in the US gets blamed for everything else!
This holds true in every car sold. Read their manuals. It always says beware of high pressure washes.
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  #20  
Old 10-21-2010, 09:50 AM
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furby076 furby076 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anE934fun View Post
Especially when CW doesn't like popcorn that much....
Ill have to remember that the next time I see CW lurking on a fun thread.
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I agree with furby
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  #21  
Old 10-21-2010, 04:19 PM
roadkillrob roadkillrob is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eights-n-Aces View Post
Not worth commenting...read the manual.
+1 manual says you did something you should not!
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  #22  
Old 10-21-2010, 08:32 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWdewd View Post
I have a jeep wrangler and it doesn't leak. (and in winter I drive thru auto brush-less washes, again no leaks.)
But you don't have a BMW Cabrio - the ultimate top leaking machine.
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  #23  
Old 10-21-2010, 08:38 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blubaron79 View Post
This holds true in every car sold. Read their manuals. It always says beware of high pressure washes.
Not for the Volvo C70. I recently test drove a 2011 C70 and ran it through a touchless high pressure car wash. Not a single leak anywhere. Not even at the seal between the two side windows where you would expect a leak to occur due to the absence of anything structural to compress the seal with. You could take the current edition Z4 through a high pressure touchless car wash and it would perform similarly to the Volvo. The seal design on the E93 is just not up to what it should be.
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  #24  
Old 10-21-2010, 08:49 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blubaron79 View Post
+1 even advises against high pressure washes for coupes.

The pressure pushes the seals aside. Something that will never occur in real world driving.
Not at all. My ex-E93 would leak like a sieve in a rain storm. Run the car up past 35 mph in a rain storm and the water flowed like little streams off the A-pillars and where the top attached to the windshield frame. After the 4th failed repair attempt, I filled the gas tank and dropped the car off at the dealer and said to have at it (as in run the car through rainstorms to test whether the latest repair attempt was successful). About 2 weeks later, the SA called me to come pick up the car. They had had enough. The gas tank was down to maybe 2 gallons left and they had put something like 400 miles on the odometer chasing storms. A week later BMW NA was faxing me the repurchase agreement.
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  #25  
Old 10-21-2010, 10:24 PM
anE934fun anE934fun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beden1 View Post
I'm guilty of taking my 335is convertible to the automatic car wash and it does not have any leaks. It's tight as a drum, fortunately.

We have a very good local car wash that has not caused any damage to any of our cars or SUVs in 15 years . Most of the area dealers take their new cars there for prep and detailing.

After the car wash, I bring them home and do a complete detail with either Lucas Slick Mist or Meguiar's Ultimate Spray Detailer.

No scratches or swirl marks, or etc.

The only car I don't take to the auto car wash is my ZO6 because it is very low to the ground in the front and the wheels/tires are very wide. Plus, it's just a really cool car!
You sir, are one of the lucky ones. Maybe you should go and purchase a lottery ticket? I am not being snarky; if your E93 doesn't leak even a drop when you go through a touchless car wash, you are truly lucky.
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