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6 Series DIY
6 Series Do It Yourself (DIY) forum.

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  #1  
Old 10-12-2013, 11:33 AM
tonkaforce tonkaforce is offline
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Headlight removal

im sure this is posted somewhere but i have looked for the past 45 mins on youtube and forums and cant find anything. im trying to restore my headlights but i need to take them out. i got a lot of screws out, but something still holding it in, i even attempted to take off the bumper but it seem as if something in the center is holding it in. any guides that can help me with this ? thanks
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  #2  
Old 10-12-2013, 12:50 PM
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roseng roseng is online now
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Originally Posted by tonkaforce View Post
im sure this is posted somewhere but i have looked for the past 45 mins on youtube and forums and cant find anything. im trying to restore my headlights but i need to take them out. i got a lot of screws out, but something still holding it in, i even attempted to take off the bumper but it seem as if something in the center is holding it in. any guides that can help me with this ? thanks
You must Remove the front bumper first
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...t=front+bumper
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  #3  
Old 01-23-2014, 06:14 AM
Boaf 32 Boaf 32 is offline
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Good stuff roseng, I will try this in a few weeks and dry out the Headlights (condensate)
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  #4  
Old 01-27-2014, 12:58 PM
rechsanwald rechsanwald is offline
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I didn't remove the bumper

It is probably easier to learn how to do it by removing the bumper as suggested, but I haven't. I have had the same condensation problem and the controller for the adaptive headlights fail on passenger side.

I simply loosened the bumper, fender and wheel well cover near the headlight. The only reason to remove the bumper is to reach the lower bolt on the radiator side of the headlights. If you loosen the skid plate, you can reach up from below. It helps to have a spotter to guide your hand.

The bumper has a lot of electronics built into it. After outright fraud by one dealership and an auto repair shop specializing in BMW's, I do my own work. Connectors break on this thing all the time. Thus, I don't like disturbing any more electrical connectors than I absolutely have to.

By the way, when you pull back the wheel well cover from the fender, you will be looking right at the controller and ballast mounted to the back and side of the headlight. Just a tip if you have trouble with either of those. When you see what I am talking about, you will be able to change either of those in about 30 minutes start to finish.

When you remove the headlight, look for cracked wires inside the headlight itself. Cheap wire, condensation, extremes in temperatures and time cause them to rot. I completely removed the contents of the passenger headlight, ran new wire and did a "smoke test" to find the leaks.

I stood the headlight assembly vertically on my workbench and ensured there was no air movement in the area. Opened the low beam cover. I put my lit Marlboro (but any non-flaming smoke emitting item will work) about 2" into the open low beam access and let it sit about 10 to 15 seconds, removed the cigarette and closed the cover. Smoke was already emitting from various locations that did not just include the seal between the headlight and turn signal light. That is the worst offender, but there were others.

DO NOT seal the ventilation holes. There are a couple with rubber hose coming out of them. You think they condensate now. Seal those too, and your current problem will seem trite.

Sealed the leaks, replaced the wiring, cleaned the lens, cleaned the "guts", put the "guts" back into the headlight, installed headlight, turn signal light, fender, wheel well cover, etc. . . and prayed.

Works like a charm.
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  #5  
Old 01-27-2014, 03:01 PM
Boaf 32 Boaf 32 is offline
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I agree, never muck around with the electronics unless you have too. Will give it a go, thanks!
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  #6  
Old 01-27-2014, 05:59 PM
tampamark tampamark is online now
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If I recall correctly there are only 3 connectors that you unclip. They are solid Moelx connections, I can't see any possible way to break them! Good to know that you don't have to remove completely. Honestly you can just grab a couple of buckets and put them underneath and set the bumper on them and leave everything connected but the bumper off.

I have headlight washers and that hose is a BEAR to get off, I couldn't get it loose to save my life and I was tugging that sob very hard. My solution was was not to disconnect the hose but to off the entire hose assembly from the bumper complete. The headlight washers are only held on by a plastic compression clip so I released those and just laid the entire hose array up on top of the engine, that way it didn't leak. Took all of 3 minutes to remove and reinstall.
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  #7  
Old 01-27-2014, 09:07 PM
rechsanwald rechsanwald is offline
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Access

I wasn't suggesting that my way was the only way, right way or in any way better than TIS or anyone else's way. I just found another way that has the serendipitous benefit of providing a single procedure to access several components that often fail without an outside force acting on them, i.e. adaptive headlight controller, xenon ballast, secondary air pump, rather than a procedure that involves removing a bumper that has a fair number of systems that don't often fail unless an outside force acts on them, i.e. headlight washer, park distance sensors, etc . . . Moreover, you don't need a lift, jack or even buckets. With a handful of tools and common sense, this procedure allows anyone that owns a 6 to remove the turn signal light assembly, headlight assembly, adaptive headlight controller, xenon ballast and secondary air pump out in 30 to 45 minutes without completely removing anything other than bolts and screws.

Anyway, I just wanted to add a couple tips to avoid pitfalls that I learned the hard way while developing the methodology.

1. Be careful with the fenders and make sure you take out a sufficient number of screws to avoid putting excessive stress in one location or another as you work with the turn/headlight assemblies. The plastic on this car, regardless of the location, will crack in most areas with less force than you think.

2. Just below the right (passenger side) headlight assembly is your secondary air pump. Give it a thorough inspection. Note that both the headlight assembly, secondary air pump and/or horn are attached to one vertical mounting bracket.

3. Remove the headlight assembly from the bracket rather than removing the bracket from the vehicle while attached to the headlight assembly. With the former, you can slide the headlight assembly out through the front of the vehicle with relative ease.

If you try the latter, the bracket will prevent the headlight from sliding out toward the front. Instead, you will have to take it out through the wheel well, which will require you to remove the front tire and practically the entire wheel well shroud. Not fun and guaranteed to scratch the headlight lens during the process.

3. When you remove the headlight from the bracket, you will have to remove a large plastic screw. BEFORE you start to remove it, paint a line with bright fingernail polish or something equally bright and durable that runs from the screw to the plastic clip on the headlight assembly. This screw adjusts the tilt of the headlight front to back or side to side. I don't recall exactly at the moment. You will want to be sure that when you re-install the headlight assembly that this screw lines up exactly where it was on the headlight assembly clip. This will minimize the necessity of spending a couple hours dialing it in again.

4. Similarly, do NOT turn the white wheels on top of the headlight assembly. One controls the high beam housing and the other the low beam housing. Depending on which way you turn the wheel, the corresponding high or low beam housing will turn left to right or right to left. Again, I used some bright fingernail polish to mark them. If you must turn them for whatever reason, write down the number of turns and whether those turns were clockwise or counterclockwise and put them back to where they were when you re-install the headlight assembly. In addition to having to dial them in while mounted in the car (not fun either), the controller will throw a code that says the headlight is outside of tolerance or acceptable range or something like that. In other words, the movement of the headlights when switched on and ability to turn with the vehicle while rounding corners are very limited movements. The controller will not correct even marginal adjustment issues.

5. When I removed the controller and ballast to inspect them for possible signs of water damage, I had the green copper oxide that builds up around exposed electrical connectors. I cleaned them with electrical cleaner (Coca-Cola and a toothbrush works too) and put a bit of electrical grease on the end of the male connector pins before plugging everything back in and re-installing the unit.

It seemed like a 30 minute project didn't it? Not with this car.

Last edited by rechsanwald; 01-27-2014 at 09:53 PM.
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  #8  
Old 06-16-2014, 06:25 PM
Vlad Dracul Vlad Dracul is offline
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Originally Posted by rechsanwald View Post

3. Remove the headlight assembly from the bracket rather than removing the bracket from the vehicle while attached to the headlight assembly. With the former, you can slide the headlight assembly out through the front of the vehicle with relative ease.

If you try the latter, the bracket will prevent the headlight from sliding out toward the front. Instead, you will have to take it out through the wheel well, which will require you to remove the front tire and practically the entire wheel well shroud. Not fun and guaranteed to scratch the headlight lens during the process.

3. When you remove the headlight from the bracket, you will have to remove a large plastic screw. BEFORE you start to remove it, paint a line with bright fingernail polish or something equally bright and durable that runs from the screw to the plastic clip on the headlight assembly. This screw adjusts the tilt of the headlight front to back or side to side. I don't recall exactly at the moment. You will want to be sure that when you re-install the headlight assembly that this screw lines up exactly where it was on the headlight assembly clip. This will minimize the necessity of spending a couple hours dialing it in again.

4. Similarly, do NOT turn the white wheels on top of the headlight assembly. One controls the high beam housing and the other the low beam housing. Depending on which way you turn the wheel, the corresponding high or low beam housing will turn left to right or right to left. Again, I used some bright fingernail polish to mark them. If you must turn them for whatever reason, write down the number of turns and whether those turns were clockwise or counterclockwise and put them back to where they were when you re-install the headlight assembly. In addition to having to dial them in while mounted in the car (not fun either), the controller will throw a code that says the headlight is outside of tolerance or acceptable range or something like that. In other words, the movement of the headlights when switched on and ability to turn with the vehicle while rounding corners are very limited movements. The controller will not correct even marginal adjustment issues.

.
Is that what you're talking about? I don't understand the marking part.


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  #9  
Old 06-17-2014, 08:55 PM
tampamark tampamark is online now
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Originally Posted by Vlad Dracul View Post
Is that what you're talking about? I don't understand the marking part.


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You are on the right track and that is the correct screw (your sideways picture took a bit to wrap my head around), but you cannot see from that picture angle what he is referring to. I found this previously posted TIS that explains it in detail so I cropped out the relevant parts that make sense. In the first picture, there are screws marked as #1 and #2 that need to be removed. Note that the #1 screws are qty of three, the 4th screw is marked #2 by itself. It is the outside corner of the light. That screw has an adjustable post behind it, so when you remove the screw you need to either A) Hold the adjustable rear portion so you do not mess up headlight alignment -or- B) Mark the rear post in some fashion so that if you do unscrew it some it can be positioned back where you had it.

The second picture below shows a sideview of the screw marked #2, you can see the TIS instruction calls for gripping that rear adjustable post when removing the screw that holds the headlight on. If you don't, when you undo the screw, the adjustment post follows causing a misalignment or you having to go back and figure out where it should be. When you get the bumper off, look at that outer screw, it will be very apparent when you see it what is being referenced.

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Last edited by tampamark; 06-17-2014 at 08:58 PM.
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