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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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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Old 02-21-2009, 11:08 PM
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lild lild is offline
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Thumbs up fixed my sunroof today.... pics.

well i had the famous sunroof melt down. it would not either pop up or slide back. so mon. i put in my order for the new slider assembly kits. you can get the part numbers from here. http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...95&hg=54&fg=05
the listing is number 13. also the kit is listed as a rt. and left side. and come with everything you see, including the new screws. i used all the parts except for one, as i didn't figure out how it came off. and didn't want to chance breaking something else on the assembly. such as the chain, or something else. as i just couldn't run down to advance and pick up a part. also this would be a good time to clean your headliner, if it's dirty. i also recommend lubing the tracks before you tear it down and after ward so the chain and parts are lubed well. i used champion chain lube, as i have a motor cycle, and i use it for lubing the chain.

got my parts on fri. morning. as the dealer said we don't keep these in stock. so today i had fun. this project should take a couple of hours, give or take. but i included some pics. not many. i assume you that you know how to take the headliner out. really it's not that hard. but i included a couple shots for a few key pieces for removing the headliner.
now takeing the sunroof assembly out is pretty straight forward, and in one pic. you have to press back a clip on the rear. and use a screwdriver to pry out the front. don't worry, the assembly isn't that heavy, as a matter of fact all the weight is in the glass it self. this is a one man job, but a second couldn't hurt.

the tools i use was, a screwdriver style torx set. a power drill with a number 20 torx bit, which was just about the only size torx i used. a flathead screwdriver, and a allenhead wrench. and a phillips screw driver.
in one pic. you will see the allen head wrench, you can either remove the red cover piece or the whole black cover. choice is yours.

a few tips on the head liner. but first a warning.

WARNING, YOUR CAR HAS CURTIAN SIDE AIRBAGS. NOW YOU DON'T NEED TO UNHOOK THE BATT., BUT YOU CAN IF YOU WANT TOO. THEY ARE LOCATED ON THE EDGE OF THE HEADLINER, AND RUN DOWN THE WINSHEILD POST. THERY ARE ATTACHED TO THE BODY OF THE CAR AND NOT THE HEADLINER OR TRIM PIECE.SO WHEN TAKING THE WINDSHIELD POST TRIM OFF, BE CAREFUL OF WHERE YOU PRY ON. EVEN WITH THE BATT. DISSCONNECTED, THEY CAN STILL EXPLODE. IF YOUR NOT CAREFULL.

now, pull the door rubbers down. you'll need to remove the the door sill scuff pieces (not the ones that say bmw). at the back of the headliner, it wraps up and around the metal, but not a concern just want to let you know. the side pieces (where the seat belts are) need to come apart, as the upper pieces slide up into a hook at the headliner. you don't have to remove the seatbelts. the hardest part is around the sunroof itself. in one pic. you'll see the clips that hold it there, and i mean tight too. a flathead takes care of it. durring the reassembly, i suggest you slide the sunroof back, so you can sit in the middle and see how to push the headliner back on.

now durring the tear down. you will need the allen wrench to manually open the sunroof. this is a pain. if you have a allen head bit, a power drill works better. to slide the glass open, back, you will need to turn it clock wise, to close it turn it counter clock wise. to get to the tilt position, keep turning it counter clock wise until it can't turn no more. first you will need to slid the glass back until the visor comes up. you have to do this in order to remove a few pieces. (see pics.) after manually opening the sunroof to the tilt postion even though the thing doesn't move up. you will need to set the assembly on it's side and push the glass open to access the adjuster screws and take those out, when time comes to put those back in, just hand tighten them. it will be easier for adjustments later if needed be.. you will have to take those out. then place the assembly back on a sturdy surface, and then slide the glass out. tip, you'll need to make sure the wind vissor is pushed down as far as it can go. the same when you slide the glass back in.
after putting the assembly back in the car, MAKE SURE YOU REATTCH THE VENT TUBES, OR YOU WILL BE SORRY LATER.
now once agian i assume you get to the point where you start viewing the pics. if you have any question pm. or post up i will answer them when i can.
the only thing that sucks is i can only post 12 pics at a time. i also tried to post the pics, in order of the repair.
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Last edited by lild; 02-21-2009 at 11:39 PM.
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:14 PM
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lild lild is offline
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here are the rest of the pics.
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:17 PM
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and a few more.
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Old 02-22-2009, 03:59 AM
CMWalker CMWalker is offline
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Thanks for the documentation effort. I've bookmarked this one for when the inevitable happens!
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Old 02-22-2009, 09:51 AM
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Is your car silver with black on the roof?
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Old 02-22-2009, 09:56 AM
andyffer andyffer is offline
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I havent read through the DIY but I did bookmark it.

That roof of yours is tight
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:03 AM
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lild lild is offline
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Originally Posted by 5seriesmatt View Post
Is your car silver with black on the roof?
that is correct, silver, with a black roof. i did this when i reapinted the car. but i paint the mudguards and the doormoldings to match the car. (the ones that are in the middle of the door.)
now i need to tint the windows. and then she will be right.
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:10 AM
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Let's get some pics of the car!!
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:15 AM
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here are some pics. these were taken about a yr ago. right after i painted it. scroll down to post #37.
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...=345299&page=2
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:17 AM
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Adrian H Adrian H is offline
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My only comment is "Why didn't you just take out the roof entierly?" or am I the only person who likes a stiffer top.
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Heh. Well, you should know if its a touring. It would have a very large badonkadonk.
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:20 AM
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lild lild is offline
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My only comment is "Why didn't you just take out the roof entierly?" or am I the only person who likes a stiffer top.
not sure what your asking here.
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Old 03-19-2010, 06:26 PM
JMD02M5 JMD02M5 is offline
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Thank you so much for taking the time to document your work, it helped out a lot.
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Old 03-20-2010, 10:24 PM
528imwayne 528imwayne is offline
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Great job,I will be using this DIY in the near future,THANKS!
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Old 03-22-2010, 04:16 PM
JCAvitua JCAvitua is offline
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I do this job about once a year because the two plastic pieces that press the sunroof up to the tilt position break. I wish someone made them out of metal. I can do this in about 2 hours, but every year? Good thing my dealership warranties these for 2 years.
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Old 03-22-2010, 05:36 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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how long did it take you and how much were parts lild?
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Old 04-30-2010, 10:23 AM
hankloud hankloud is online now
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I had to do the this repair on my sunroof in Nov 2007, it took about 2 hrs, I paid $28 for each side from the dealer. My roof has broken again and will need the same repair. I just checked price and availabilty from the dealer the parts price has jumped to $63 for each side. What is up with that? Inflation has not been that bad for 29 months.
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Old 04-30-2010, 11:31 AM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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I do this job about once a year because the two plastic pieces that press the sunroof up to the tilt position break. I wish someone made them out of metal. I can do this in about 2 hours, but every year? Good thing my dealership warranties these for 2 years.
That's what happened to mine, press the button to tilt one day and "POP"! it will still slide open but now it's knida loose and rattles because the tilt clips broke.
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Old 04-30-2010, 02:30 PM
E39 Paul E39 Paul is offline
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thank you for doing a fairly detailed job!!!! going to do mine on monday............perfect for reference if stuck
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  #19  
Old 11-27-2010, 05:40 PM
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nyclad nyclad is offline
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Angry

I'm currently attempting this repair and ran into a block.

Background: my e39's sunroof won't retract and won't tilt up. The shade only closes to within 3 inches from the fully closed position. It won't close any further. When I use the sunroof controls to retract it, I get a bunch of nasty clicking noises. When I use the controls to tilt it, I hear some motor noise, but no tilting.

My headliner is removed. I have mine torn down to the point where you use the allen wrench to retract the sunroof. I've been turning the allen wrench clockwise in an attempt to slide the sunroof back to access the first pieces (front stops) but I'm at a point where it's basically stopped and requires a LOT of strength to keep turning. When I do turn it some more, it clicks, and seems to slip a notch.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance,
Steve
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Old 11-27-2010, 09:01 PM
dvsgene dvsgene is offline
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Sounds like the plastic connecting the tracks have snapped. Remove the sunroof and repair:

Here is the DIY:
http://bimmer.roadfly.com/bmw/forums/e39/8023857-4.html


Here are the repair kits you'll need:
Left control rail kit: 54-12-8-202-295
Right control rail kit: 54-12-8-202-296
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Old 11-27-2010, 09:29 PM
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nyclad nyclad is offline
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Hi,

Thanks for your suggestion, but I have the repair kits for both sides already.

My problem is that I can't get past part one, the part about retracting the sunroof. It just doesn't retract, when I hand crank it with the allen wrench to retract, it keeps clicking and the entire motor assembly shakes when it clicks. I can't make it tilt upwards either.



Quote:
Originally Posted by dvsgene View Post
Sounds like the plastic connecting the tracks have snapped. Remove the sunroof and repair:

Here is the DIY:
http://bimmer.roadfly.com/bmw/forums/e39/8023857-4.html


Here are the repair kits you'll need:
Left control rail kit: 54-12-8-202-295
Right control rail kit: 54-12-8-202-296
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  #22  
Old 11-27-2010, 09:40 PM
dvsgene dvsgene is offline
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Originally Posted by nyclad View Post
Hi,

Thanks for your suggestion, but I have the repair kits for both sides already.

My problem is that I can't get past part one, the part about retracting the sunroof. It just doesn't retract, when I hand crank it with the allen wrench to retract, it keeps clicking and the entire motor assembly shakes when it clicks. I can't make it tilt upwards either.
If the plastics have snapped, cranking may not work. You might want to try and unscrew the motor in order to move the glass back manually.

Key is to get it to a tilt position to access the 3 torx screw on each side to remove the sunroof glass.

By removing the motor, the gears on the motor no longer engage the track allowing the sunroof to move more freely.

Also the inability for the gears to move the sunroof could be an indication that the gears on the motor are worn or the motor is misaligned not engaging the track properly.

Without pictures or more details, it's EXTREMELY difficult to diagnose via the internet. I've taken apart the sunroof a few times already so know exactly what to look for when it's apart in front of me.

Last edited by dvsgene; 11-27-2010 at 09:41 PM.
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  #23  
Old 11-27-2010, 11:26 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvsgene View Post
Without pictures or more details, it's EXTREMELY difficult to diagnose via the internet.
I just added this thread to the bestlinks reference on sunroofs:
- How to repair & reset the sunroof (1) (2) (3)
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  #24  
Old 11-28-2010, 05:27 PM
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DHoang DHoang is offline
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Is it really necessary to remove the whole roof liner to repair the broken parts? The broken parts simply slides out of the rail, and all the broken parts can be serviced from the top looking down into the moon roof frame support. The glass is held in place w/ 3 torx screws per side, which can all be removed and installed from inside the car, and the headliner does not obstruct accessing these screws to take out the moon roof. You can gain access to the motor and manually turn the motor w/ the allen wrench if so desired by simply unsnapping the small cover right next to the cabin lights. I do like how you went to great lengths to document removal of the headliner, but whether this is necessary to replace the broken plastic rail parts, I'm not so sure that this is a requirement.
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Old 11-28-2010, 05:28 PM
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nyclad nyclad is offline
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Well, here are a few photos of my sunroof repair efforts.

My sunroof will not move either way, it will not retract back nor will it tilt. When it was plugged in, I could hear the motor, but it would start clicking after a few seconds, which I interpret to be the gears slipping. I'm guessing there may be some obstruction in the sunroof. I have had the WILL NOT TILT UP PROBLEM for a few months, but it would retract. After I traded vehicles with a friend so I could use his pickup truck, I forgot to tell him about the sunroof and he accidentally made it not move at all. I bought repair kits for both right and left side rails, and here we are.

I've already removed the headliner. I removed the sunroof motor and found some black fuzz stuck on the metal drive gear. Is that normal?
IMG_2600


Anyways, the teeth/corkscrew on the control cables of the sunroof also have this fuzz. This is the hole the sunroof motor drive gear fit into.
IMG_2602



I pulled the rubber accordian strip off both sides of the sunroof and I can see two T-25 torx screws there.
IMG_2603

I'm guessing that these T-25 screws are what holds the glass onto the frame. I'm hoping that by removing the glass, I can access the rest of the components of the sunroof repair.

I'll remove the glass tomorrow when I have more light and I'll report back then. Until then, any ideas of the fuzz?

Thanks much,
Steve

Last edited by nyclad; 11-28-2010 at 05:32 PM.
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