Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > Z Series > E85 / E86 Z4 (2003-2008)

E85 / E86 Z4 (2003-2008)
E85 Z4 convertible and E86 Z4 coupe talk with our BMW gurus here.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #26  
Old 12-03-2009, 01:26 PM
shipkiller's Avatar
shipkiller shipkiller is offline
Underway on Nuclear Power
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 782
Mein Auto: Me
I would not say that the power top has issues. I would say that from 03-05, it needs more maintenance than what you are used to. Keep the drain holes clean and you should have virtually have no issues with the top motor.

The only repair issues I have had on my 03 (built 10/02 with 66K miles) was a leaking radiator hose o-ring, (replace the hose). Now for preventative maintenance, I have run the gambit. Even replaced the VANOS O-rings. Of course, I do all the maintenance myself.
__________________
.
.
How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively?
Furthermore, does legality establish morality?
Slavery was legal; apartheid was legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of morel people. - Walter E. Williams
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 12-04-2009, 01:59 AM
Jermy1304 Jermy1304 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Houston, TX
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 508
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW Z4 3.0i
Looks like you just did. The main problems with the Z4 are Convertible Top Microswitch and Hydraulic Unit failure, Bad Ignition Coils(recalled), Airbag Passenger Mat Sensor(can be fixed by dealer at no charge if you have warranty letter), Fuel Pump Resistor(Recalled), Oil Filter Housing and Gasket leak, Valve cover gasket leak, Cooling System Overall(like most BMW's), Air Intake Hose leak(makes whistle on light acceleration), Wheel Bearings(louder noise with acceleration), Camber on tires(Z3 probably has the same tire wear pattern). Those are the ones I know of. My car has had A LOT of work done to it since it drove off the lot in 2003. Most people have not.

When buying an 03 Z4, see what was done at Inspection I and Inspection II. Also check if it was under Certified Pre-Owned Dealer Warranty or the Maintenance Plan. If the car has about 60k on it, I would probably change the oil, bleed the brake lines, Flush the coolant, check the brake pads, change the air filter, change the spark plugs(stick with the NGK Coppers), Replace the Drive Belts, Air the tires to 35psi, Clean out the Convertible Top Drain Plugs(while you are in there seal the hydraulic motor casing with RTV to prevent water corrosion), and run a bottle of Techron through her.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 12-04-2009, 05:22 PM
shipkiller's Avatar
shipkiller shipkiller is offline
Underway on Nuclear Power
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 782
Mein Auto: Me
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jermy1304 View Post
Looks like you just did. The main problems with the Z4 are Convertible Top Microswitch and Hydraulic Unit failure, Bad Ignition Coils(recalled), Airbag Passenger Mat Sensor(can be fixed by dealer at no charge if you have warranty letter), Fuel Pump Resistor(Recalled), Oil Filter Housing and Gasket leak, Valve cover gasket leak, Cooling System Overall(like most BMW's), Air Intake Hose leak(makes whistle on light acceleration), Wheel Bearings(louder noise with acceleration), Camber on tires(Z3 probably has the same tire wear pattern). Those are the ones I know of. My car has had A LOT of work done to it since it drove off the lot in 2003. Most people have not.
I forgot about two problems I had. I did have to replace the boot micro-switch and the Intake Hose.
I have not heard of an issue with the Oil Filter Housing leaking, but that could be cause by a cut O-ring upon re-installation of the filter top if you are careless. ANY car can have a Valve Cover gasket leak, but the way that BMW designs that gasket it is unlikely. I replaced mine when I did the Vanos O-Ring replacement, so I know just how solid that gasket is.... As far a Camber wear problem, that issue is because BMW Camber settings are aggressive and this WILL lead to wear. You are not driving a Honda.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jermy1304 View Post
When buying an 03 Z4, see what was done at Inspection I and Inspection II. Also check if it was under Certified Pre-Owned Dealer Warranty or the Maintenance Plan. If the car has about 60k on it, I would probably change the oil, bleed the brake lines, Flush the coolant, check the brake pads, change the air filter, change the spark plugs(stick with the NGK Coppers), Replace the Drive Belts, Air the tires to 35psi, Clean out the Convertible Top Drain Plugs(while you are in there seal the hydraulic motor casing with RTV to prevent water corrosion), and run a bottle of Techron through her.
BMW recommends that the brake system is flushed every two years.... I do it once a year.
You can clean the Convertible Top Drains but you cannot seal the motor housing at the same time. The top MUST be removed from the car to do that.
__________________
.
.
How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively?
Furthermore, does legality establish morality?
Slavery was legal; apartheid was legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of morel people. - Walter E. Williams
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 12-04-2009, 09:48 PM
Jermy1304 Jermy1304 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Houston, TX
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 508
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW Z4 3.0i
Yeah, i was just referring to while working on the Convertible top. The drains are a little easier to clean out if you remove the top. I did when i replaced my Convertible Top Hydraulic Motor following your D.I.Y guide(which was excellent!).

It sounds like you really keep up with maintenance on your Z4 Shipkiller...You will miss a lot of the problems that we run into by fixing it ahead of time. We would all be wise to follow your example.
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 12-04-2009, 10:40 PM
shipkiller's Avatar
shipkiller shipkiller is offline
Underway on Nuclear Power
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 782
Mein Auto: Me
It is really my wife's car.

Starting this month, I am in search of MY car. A 2007-8 Z4M Coupe'...
__________________
.
.
How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively?
Furthermore, does legality establish morality?
Slavery was legal; apartheid was legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of morel people. - Walter E. Williams
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 02-01-2010, 10:39 AM
Enemy Enemy is offline
Registered User
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1991 BMW 850i 6-Spd V-12
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipkiller View Post
Assuming the car is stationary, and you have checked all fuses and such, if you press the down button, the front lip unlocks, the windows go down, but the top does not move, two possible problems.

1. The rear "Compartment Floor" is not down or the microswitch is bad or more likely, the microswitch arm has bent or has came off.

2. The motor has died.

To verify which has happened, get your OWNERS Manual for the next step.

A. Release the hydraulic control valve by pulling and setting the RED round handle in the trunk, as shown in the Owners Manual. This will allow you to move the top by hand.

B. Press the down button letting the top unlock.

C. Using two peaple, Manually move the top to the lowered/stowed position.

D. Press the down button again allowing the top to lock it in the down position.

E. Press the up button.

It the top works properly by raising up and locking back into place, then the microswitch is the issue.

If it does not move, then your motor is most likely the issue. The Softtop controller normally is not a problem.
shipkiller,

I'm hoping you can give me your opinion on the following scenario.

'03 Z4 2.5i

I just picked it up (used) a year ago. Top worked perfect all summer long. In October, the top decided to stop working. I spent all winter without touching the top. I got curious last week and hit the "down" button since the weather was kind of nice. To my surprise, the top retracted on it's own, and it came back up to close on it's own. I was in disbelief. Tried it a few more times, and it worked, no problems.

Later in the evening, on my way home from work, I dropped the top, cruised home... But when it came time to close, I got screwed and had to do it by hand.

I tested out the compartment floor switch by having a buddy press it while I hit the "down" button. Top would unlock, but would not retract. I hit "up" to lock it, he let go of the button, left the floor up, and when I hit "down" again, it lit up orange. Dropped the floor, hit "down" again, it unlocked. So I knew the button worked fine.

Now, with the floor down, I hit "down" and the top unlocks, windows drop, but top does not retract. So I hit "up" and locked it again.

I pulled the red cable in the trunk, locked it in place, unlocked the top by hitting "down", buddy and I pushed the top to the down/retracted position, pushed the "down" button again, and it locked itself into place.

I hit the "up" button and the top picked itself up using the motor, and locked itself in the closed position. I proceeded to hit "down" again, and the top operated normally, retracted using the motor and locked itself in the down position. Seemed to be OK now. Except when I hit "up" to close the top again, it wouldn’t work and we had to close it by hand. When we push the top back up, the electronics lock into place when I hit the "up" button.

What's wrong with my top? Is the motor completely done for? Or could it be low on fluid and possibly just needs to be topped off?
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 02-01-2010, 01:37 PM
shipkiller's Avatar
shipkiller shipkiller is offline
Underway on Nuclear Power
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 782
Mein Auto: Me
Enemy:
Thank you for a very concise report. Just what is needed to be reported but seldom is.......

Since you have removed the switch from the equation, it really sounds like your motor is bad.
To replace the motor you have to remove the top. Sorry

It sounds like in the interval between uses, the motor dried out somewhat. I know of one person in England who pulled hit top (using my procedures) and put the motor in the oven at 140' for an hour or so to dry it out. That fixed his motor problem.

While that is a novel approach, I think that is a shortterm fix. When you pull the motor out of the housing, you will see what I mean.

Check the How-To section for my two procedures.

This next rant is directed at everyone else.
I really have to swash this crap about 'low hydraulic fluid'.
If you really think you have 'low fluid' then you have a leak and the softtop MUST COME OUT OF THE CAR to find the leak and repair. Never heard of a car with low fluid.

Additionally, You CANNOT ACCESS your softtop motor with the top in the car. Sorry... Once you remove your top from the car, you will see what I mean. YOU CAN NOT DO IT. Please, stop that urban myth...

sorry, but those two issues above piss me off.
__________________
.
.
How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively?
Furthermore, does legality establish morality?
Slavery was legal; apartheid was legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of morel people. - Walter E. Williams
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 02-01-2010, 02:34 PM
Enemy Enemy is offline
Registered User
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1991 BMW 850i 6-Spd V-12
shipkiller,

Thanks for the response!

My buddy and I are going to attempt the EuroBake method (lol) this weekend. Why? Well, because why not? =D

If it doesn't work, then at least we got some practice with removing/re-installing the top for when I do end up replacing the motor and housing. Thanks a million for the DIY write-ups! We'll let you know how everything works out.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 02-01-2010, 04:08 PM
shipkiller's Avatar
shipkiller shipkiller is offline
Underway on Nuclear Power
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 782
Mein Auto: Me
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enemy View Post
shipkiller,

Thanks for the response!

My buddy and I are going to attempt the EuroBake method (lol) this weekend. Why? Well, because why not? =D

If it doesn't work, then at least we got some practice with removing/re-installing the top for when I do end up replacing the motor and housing. Thanks a million for the DIY write-ups! We'll let you know how everything works out.

Ok, let me know how that works for you.

After you bake/dryout your motor, put the top back in the car, but don't finalize the install with all the trim etc. Just test the top. If it fails then it should only take you about 30min to get it back out to replace the motor..

The responses I received from my How-To's were awesome. Some even said that after studying the How-To's, it only took them 1.5 hours to get the top out of the car. I know I could now do it in an 1 -2 hours now that I have done it.

Seven days until my new MC....
__________________
.
.
How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively?
Furthermore, does legality establish morality?
Slavery was legal; apartheid was legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of morel people. - Walter E. Williams
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 02-01-2010, 06:10 PM
Enemy Enemy is offline
Registered User
Location: Fredericksburg, VA
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1991 BMW 850i 6-Spd V-12
Oh yeah man! Congrats on the MC! I envy you.
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 05-12-2010, 07:48 PM
RMeter RMeter is offline
Registered User
Location: Tinly Park, IL
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: 2003 Z4 3.0
I noticed in a different message of yours you bought a rooftop motor from ECS Tuning. So did I, 2003 Z4 . Did you notice on the new motor the hydraulic lines 14,12 and 13,11 were in different positions from the old rusty one? So did you move them over to match the new motor? And the wires on the back did you connect the green wire to green and the blue wire to red on the new motor? I also wondered about the screws holding the hydro lines in place on the motor? Does it matter were that screw ends up when tightened? I tried to get the holes on the screw to line up with the hydro lines but isn't easy. I hope it doen't matter. Please help if you remember doing this yourself.
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 08-22-2010, 03:58 PM
want2bsailing want2bsailing is offline
Registered User
Location: South Beach,FL
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 2006 Z4M
Question Z4 top stuck in down position

Pretty sure its the motor...found the red handled pull..do you pull really hard or does it only come out a little..was unsucessful..help..before it rains...
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 08-22-2010, 07:36 PM
Trajan Trajan is offline
Registered User
Location: SE PA
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 31
Mein Auto: 2004 Z4 3.0i
Some days my top works like it's new. Some days it's acts like it uses a cane. (like me).
On the days it doesn't want to go up after it unlocks, I just pull it up.

I have to put one foot on the seat. But it works.

Never bothered with the red handle.

Last edited by Trajan; 08-22-2010 at 07:37 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 08-22-2010, 07:46 PM
Trajan Trajan is offline
Registered User
Location: SE PA
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 31
Mein Auto: 2004 Z4 3.0i
Double post.
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 08-23-2010, 06:13 AM
want2bsailing want2bsailing is offline
Registered User
Location: South Beach,FL
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 2006 Z4M
Thumbs up Z4 Power Convertible won't work????

Thanks for the info....been goin nuts reading manual and posts.....I didn't want to break anything by pulling for all I'm worth........but can't live in south florida during rainy season with no top !!!!
Reply With Quote
  #41  
Old 11-05-2012, 12:53 PM
appleannie appleannie is offline
Registered User
Location: Kansa
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: Z4
BMW Z4 top motor failure

New to this site, greetings to all.
I have a 2007 Z4 which I LOVE!
I was rear ended at a stop light. after the incident, the convertible top would not work.
I could hear the motor running, but it would not engage the top.
I took it to a BMW dealer and had the motor replaced. I was told by the service manager that it was not uncommon the see this kind of a problem after a rear end collision.
I later took the car into my local dealer to have the damage to the back bumper repaired and relayed the story about the motor failure, he also told me that he had seen this happen.
problem is State Farm, "hitter's" insurance is refusing to pay the claim.
Does any one out there have any info, insight or suggestion/comments on this problem?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > Z Series > E85 / E86 Z4 (2003-2008)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:54 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms