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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 08-19-2010, 11:54 AM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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Driver's Door Lock Problems

Hello, I'm new to the forum and I know there is some information about my issue already posted, but before I buy an actuator I wanted to maybe confirm my problem. I have to use my key to lock and unlock my car. No keyless system. Occasionally the driver's side lock would get very difficult to turn. Sometimes it would unlock all the other doors, sometimes not. Yesterday the key would no longer lock or unlock the driver's door or any other door from the drivers side. Trunk still locks and unlocks all doors and occassionaly the driver's door. Passenger door does the same. Actuator?? Also, do I need a new actuator even if I go down and have an aftermarket keyless entry installed? Thanks
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  #2  
Old 08-19-2010, 09:26 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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If the lock mechanism is hard to turn it's either the lock itself or the actuator (or both). Since the actuator doesn't seem to work even when activated from one of the other locks, it's got to be at least partly the actuator. It sounds too simple, but have you tried WD40, LockEz or other lock lube?

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  #3  
Old 08-19-2010, 09:41 PM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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WD-40 wouldn't help now. It turns very easy now and does nothing. Ha!
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  #4  
Old 08-23-2010, 08:59 PM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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Still need HELP

Well, put in a new actuator today. Seemed to fix some of the problem. Door lock now operates properly when using the key in the trunk and passenger door. Will lock the doors from the driver's side but will not unlock. Any suggestions would be helpful.
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  #5  
Old 08-26-2010, 07:49 PM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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Asking again. Anyone have any idea why my key will work everywhere except for unlocking the driver's door? Replaced the actuator and that helped... but still not quite fixed. Thanks
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:55 PM
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IgotBMW IgotBMW is offline
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did you replace the actuator yourself or did you have someone else do it?
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  #7  
Old 08-26-2010, 09:27 PM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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What are you implying I did it myself. It locks fine. Using the passenger door or trunk it unlocks fine. Just not the driver's door. Seems like if I had something wrong it wouldn't unlock from anywhere.
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Old 08-27-2010, 07:05 AM
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IgotBMW IgotBMW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KDBowler View Post
What are you implying I did it myself. It locks fine. Using the passenger door or trunk it unlocks fine. Just not the driver's door. Seems like if I had something wrong it wouldn't unlock from anywhere.
Not implying anything at all.

I need to replace my DD actuator so if you did it yourself, I was going to ask if it was difficult. That's all.
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Old 08-27-2010, 07:39 AM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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Not difficult at all except for trying to "feel" where it goes. Its in an area of the door that can't really be seen. I didn't take off the lock assembly... but if I were doing it again I certainly would. You'll be able to look inside the door with the lock out and the alignment will be much easier. Panel off and actuator out is about 15 minutes. New actuator in all depends on how quickly you get it aligned. The DIY instructions on this site are good. http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...t=diy+actuator Make sure you work with the window rolled up so it is out of the way.
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Last edited by KDBowler; 08-27-2010 at 07:41 AM.
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  #10  
Old 08-27-2010, 08:27 AM
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IgotBMW IgotBMW is offline
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OK. Thanks. I have an airbag on my door. Does yours? If you do, did you have to take that piece out?

Hope you get your door issues figured out.
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  #11  
Old 08-27-2010, 08:55 AM
KDBowler KDBowler is offline
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Only had the car for a month. Don't really know if it has an airbag there. Didn't see anything with the panel off. But I've read several instructions and none of them mention an airbag so I doubt it comes into play. The actuator is in the very top of the door by the lock.
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  #12  
Old 10-04-2013, 07:21 AM
Lukeprater Lukeprater is offline
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Mein Auto: bmw 318i 1997
This same thing is happening to me--my key locks and unlocks the car everywhere except for unlocking the driver's door.
I replaced my handle--switched out the new lock cylinder pins with the old ones so I could use my new key. The handle works, the power locks work--everything works except the keyed unlock for the driver door.

Can one of you provide any insight?
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