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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 11-20-2012, 10:12 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Do we have a step-by-step DIY for ADJUSTING window glass when replacing the regulator

Q: Do we actually have a step-by-step procedure, with MEASUREMENTS, for properly adjusting the window location when replacing our BMW E39 window regulators?

After a long sordid attempt at repairing my window regulator [gory details at (1) (2) (3)] I gave up on the repair and just replaced my drivers side front window regulator.


However, (apparently) even though I tried, after I buttoned it all up, I belatedly realized I got the adjustment all wrong because I made the wrong decisions.

Here is the forward window clamp of the driver side front door, which adjusted easily:


However, the rear window clamp of the driver side front door did not adjust so easily.

Notice the rubber protection wedge on this rear window clamp is maxed out yet the plastic wing stop is near the top!

If I lower the plastic wing stop any further, the inch-long rubber protection strip will be stretched an extra inch and a half!



The result is that the driver side front LH window doesn't go down all the way down.


The Bentleys 'sound' specific, but notice they don't actually tell you anything about how to adjust the plastic stops!
Nor do they provide any decent reference points when the window is DOWN (which is the 'only' place you can adjust it).
There are no measurements, no pictures, no guides (that are helpful) in the Bentleys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
  1. Adjust window.
    • "Door window, adjusting", (512-8)
    • Whenever the door window or window regulator is removed, window adjustment should be checked.
    • The glass should contact the top of the window squarely and should seat against the window seal uniformly.
    • NOTE: If the window does not contact the window seal uniformly, wind noise or water infiltration may result.
    • Remove door panel as described in "411 Doors".
    • Disconnect negative (-) cable from battery. Remove airbag unit and vapor barrier from door. See "721 Airbag System (SRS)".
    • Longitudinal adjustment:
      • Adjustments are made with window in open position.
      • Loosen window guide rail mounting nuts (2), but do not remove.
      • Slide window glass in longitudinal direction to adjust.
      • Tighten guide rail nuts.
      • Tightening torque, window regulator guide rail to door, 89 in-lb.
    • Vertical adjustment:
      • Adjustments are made with window in open position.
      • Loosen window clamping fasteners (2), but do not remove.
      • Adjust rear clamp and tighten fastener.
      • Tighten front clamp fastener.
      • Raise door window up to stop.
      • Check gap at window front edge (Front of window = 5.4mm, 0.21 in)
      • Check gap at window top edge (Top of window = 10mm, 0.39 in).
      • NOTE: Measure window frame between door window edge and panel.
      • Tightening torque, Window regulator guide rail to door, 89 in-lb.
I even tried the BMW TIS, but it too didn't have enough (for me) detail to adequately explain HOW to adjust the window glass such that it would go up and down properly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post


This DIY says a bit about adjusting the 'ears':
- BMW E39 2000 528iA Front Window Regulator
In addition, the BMW TIS 51 33 00 refers adjustment to BMW TIS 51 32 154 but that TIS doesn't provide any new useful detail.

Given that the Bentleys & the TIS weren't enough (for me anyway), may I ask this question:
Q: Do we have a step-by-step DIY procedures for properly ADJUSTING the window position (with measurements and specific directions so that we can get this right the first time)?
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Last edited by bluebee; 11-20-2012 at 10:34 AM. Reason: Added detail.
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  #2  
Old 12-16-2012, 10:27 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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The question came up again today over here:
-> E39 (1997 - 2003) > How do we loosen tension on a BMW E39 front window regulator anyway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ez2456 View Post
Help! Bought the new regulator. Swapping the motor was a snap, and I was really proud/happy when I reinstalled the entire system without any problems. And then . .. . . . tested it before even putting the glass back on, and it seemed to work beautifully. So I reassembled just about everything: placed glass in the appropriate "jaws" which were at the very bottom of the door, tightened them in, and hit the window button. Window went up nicely until about half way up, when it suddenly slowed considerably; it seemed to labor going up any further. Long story short, it is now up, with about two inches left to go for a full close, but it will not move either up or down. I can hear the motor wanting to work, but nothing happens. Is there a trick to this? Some adjustment that no one has disclosed yet? Some magical spot at which the window glass needs to be installed for the entire system to work? Assuming I can now get the glass out again (may be very hard since it is difficult to reach the Jaw, how does this system get "tuned??"
Thanks.
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  #3  
Old 01-25-2015, 10:17 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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The perfectly valid question of what is the trick to ADJUSTING the window after replacing a window regulator, motor, or restringing the cables, or repairing the trolley, etc. came up again today over here:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > How do we loosen tension on a BMW E39 front window regulator anyway?
Quote:
Originally Posted by esilvas View Post
I assume we never got a proper method to adjust the window? My daughter and I fixed the front passenger window last week. This week, it stopped again about two inches from the top. It looks like this happens when replacing the regulator.
Personally, even with the Bentleys, I couldn't get the hang of adjusting my drivers side front window. There must be a trick to it, that I missed or don't know.

Apparently I'm not the only one, so, it would be nice if others could impart upon us the tricks to get the adjustment right.

Running the obligatory search in the bestlinks for /adjust f3, I find only this reference:
- How to adjust the windows after the repair (1) (2) (3)

Where I include number 2 and 3 above below:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fragzem View Post
After replacing your window regulators, your Auto Lowering/Raising functions for your window might not work.

Here is the reprogramming procedures.

Activating Automatic Lowering Function:
1. Turn Key to 1
2. Lower your window fully (manually)
3. Hold on to it for 30 seconds.
4. Done

Activating Automatic Raising Functions:
1. Turn Key to 1
2. Raise your window fully (manually)
3. Hold on to it for 30 seconds.
4. Done
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
You need the Bentleys anyway ... but ... what was wrong with the adjustment procedures already provided in step #55 of that link?

They're typed up verbatim from my Bentleys, section 512-8.
Adjust window as described earlier.
  • i.e., "Door window, adjusting", (512-8)
  • "Door window, adjusting", (512-8)
  • Whenever the door window or window regulator is removed, window adjustment should be checked. The glass should contact the top of the window squarely and should seat against the window seal uniformly.
  • NOTE: If the window does not contact the window seal uniformly, wind noise or water infiltration may result.
  • Remove door panel as described in "411 Doors".
  • Disconnect negative (-) cable from battery. Remove airbag unit and vapor barrier from door. See "721 Airbag System (SRS)".
  • Longitudinal adjustment:
    • Adjustments are made with window in open position.
    • Loosen window guide rail mounting nuts (2), but do not remove.
    • Slide window glass in longitudinal direction to adjust.
    • Tighten guide rail nuts.
    • Tightening torque, window regulator guide rail to door, 89 in-lb.
  • Vertical adjustment:
    • Adjustments are made with window in open position.
    • Loosen window clamping fasteners (2), but do not remove.
    • Adjust rear clamp and tighten fastener.
    • Tighten front clamp fastener.
    • Raise door window up to stop.
    • Check gap at window front edge (Front of window = 5.4mm, 0.21 in)
    • Check gap at window top edge (Top of window = 10mm, 0.39 in).
    • NOTE: Measure window frame between door window edge and panel.
    • Tightening torque, Window regulator guide rail to door, 89 in-lb.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
Here is the relevant section from the Bentleys (same as above, except with pictures), pages 872 and 873 of the 1002-page first book.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ztom View Post
Motor is auto shut off just install
Quote:
Originally Posted by MatWiz View Post
Bluebee, I think he's concern about the electric motor.

Motor: just put the motor in any way it goes in. It will just work fine. There is a (child?) safety feature on the upper window frame that stops the motor when there is pressure on the top of the frame.

Try this: on your front driver side window, put your fist on the top of the glass and switch the window up. Your fist will simulate a child sticking his neck through the window and getting trapped. Notice how the window will stop as soon as there is a little pressure on your fist when it gets trapped.

That's what stops the motor when it goes up. I dont know what stops it on the way down. It just stops.

mw

Sent from my IBM 360/20 using punch cards.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW_GURU View Post
Hey Guys,.. You ROCK! That was the information I was looking for. ztom, MatWiz, right on target. If it stops based on the pressure, then it is current limited. I will just install and test carefully. I am not sure this kind of information is usually available. I then do be anal when in comes to knowing exactly how something is to perform.

Thanks again!
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Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #4  
Old 01-25-2015, 10:26 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 22,655
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Following the procedure outlined in the very first thread in this forum ...
- How To Easily Find Information on Your E39 Topic Before Posting a New Thread

I ran the obligatory E39-only title-only keyword search for "adjust window", and I was surprised that only one thread showed up (even when I widened the search to include E46 and E38 vehicles):
- Correct way to adjust driver's side window after regulator replacement?, by dustoffdan

Unfortunately, despite the wonderful title, that thread really didn't add a whole lot to the discussion...
Quote:
Originally Posted by dustoffdan View Post
Hello all,

So I finally replaced the driver's side regulator over the weekend with the help of some great posts in the forum and now I'm stuck trying to figure out how to get it running smoothly.
Is there a "proper" way to adjust the window that I dont know about or is it finesse and trial and error? The new regulator runs great up and down with out the window installed and the window will slide up and down no problem, the problem is when I combine the two. It runs very slowly and even stops sometimes about half way up. it sounds like its working really hard and binding up somewhere.
I've tried loosening it and making small adjustments over and over and it seems like no combination I try works. Rather maddening as It seems like it shouldn't be this difficult to do. Any words of wisdom from the forum? Thanks in advance, Dan.
Quote:
Originally Posted by WaveSurfin3100 View Post
I had same the issue a when I replaced my driver side front regulator some time ago. I remember holding the window in the up position and working the regulator until the brackets were almost to the bottom of the window. Just make sure you can tighten the screws though the access hole/opening at either side of door. It worked for me ,and with luck, it will work for you as well! Good Luck!
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
I'm working on the adjustment of the glass stops, after replacing the regulator.
There isn't much written about how exactly to adjust these glass stops.
The best I can find I put over here.

But better information is needed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GSA1 View Post
If you hear the motor, ur probably looking at either: a cable off track(guide) or the window off one of the two receivers at the bottom of the glass. The set screws come loose and then the window gets cocked and binds as it rolls up making it too tight/ off to move evenly and freely.
__________________
Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need

Last edited by bluebee; 01-25-2015 at 10:28 AM.
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2015, 10:36 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Widening the search to Google, the problem is that the keywords "bmw e39 adjust window regulator" is too generic, netting mostly references on how to replace the window regulator.

The top few hits came right back to our own threads, e.g.,
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
Looking at all the DIYs specifically for how to set the seat stops, I re-found this DIY which was one of the rare DIYs explaining the seat-stop adjustment concept:
- Front window regulator replacement

BTW, here is some terminology from that DIY:
- Rail (the two black steel sheet metal arms where the cable slides, front rail & rear rail)
- Cable guide (the two bent metal overhanging tabs on each black sheet metal rail)
- Seat (the two steel clamps holding the bottom of the window)
- Edge protector (the rubber cushion inside each of the two seats)
- Cable shroud (the triangular soft rubber protection around the cable)
Looking at the first few pages of hits, not many seem to be aimed purely at ADJUSTMENT procedures, and even the ones that are titled perfectly, there's precious little real information in them...
- How to adjust window regulator cable on 2000 BMW e39

I'm sure some of those references have adjustment procedures in them, but we'd have to manually look, for them.

So, if someone has BETTER information on how to ADJUST the window after replacement, please pitch in, so that others stand on your shoulders.
__________________
Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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