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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 09-10-2010, 09:07 AM
bmw knight bmw knight is offline
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Mein Auto: 2000 528i Sport Package
Front Passenger door won't open!!! HELP!!!

My passengerside door won't unlock anymore. I thinks it's the lock actuator.. but since I can't even unlock it to open the door, i can't take apart the door panel!

Remote and center console button will lock and unlock all other doors except for the passender front door. I've tried opening from inside handle and the door lock pin just goes up then back down. I've even tried holding the pin up and opening the door, no luck. From the outside, no luck at all.

Any ideas???

My Fiance is having to sit in the back seat!
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1998 BMW 528i (totalled) >> 1999 BMW 528i (tranny gave out)>> 2000 528i Sport Package (still have it - 3+ yrs)
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  #2  
Old 09-10-2010, 09:16 AM
cn90 cn90 is online now
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It is a good test of your future marriage. If she can sit in the back seat for a week, then she passes the test LOL...

OK...Enough joking, here is a good thread, read through its entirety, written by "Cabinetman2":
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...ht=cabinetman2
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  #3  
Old 09-10-2010, 09:38 AM
bmw knight bmw knight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
It is a good test of your future marriage. If she can sit in the back seat for a week, then she passes the test LOL...

OK...Enough joking, here is a good thread, read through its entirety, written by "Cabinetman2":
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...ht=cabinetman2
Cool, i'll check it out.. thanks for the quickness in your reply!!!
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1998 BMW 528i (totalled) >> 1999 BMW 528i (tranny gave out)>> 2000 528i Sport Package (still have it - 3+ yrs)
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  #4  
Old 09-10-2010, 09:50 AM
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Fudman Fudman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
It is a good test of your future marriage. If she can sit in the back seat for a week, then she passes the test LOL...
That's funny!!! And you helped him too (as always)!
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  #5  
Old 09-10-2010, 09:50 AM
cn90 cn90 is online now
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Yeah, Read cabinetman2 instructions carefully, there is a way to open the door with minimal and minimal damage to the door panel.
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  #6  
Old 09-10-2010, 10:38 AM
bmw knight bmw knight is offline
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gotcha.. read it.. going to try some steps at home later... sigh...
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  #7  
Old 04-06-2011, 03:22 AM
hogatoga hogatoga is offline
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Exclamation Please repost this every where about the stuck door.

I had this problem too and wasted too many hours trying to play with the door handles to no avail till I said screw it, I'll just force it open, I don't care if I break clips, I am tired of being a damn chauffeur.

I took the screw out from the inside door handle,

pulled the door panel up so the top clips that hold the door panel in place would come off,

then I stuck a flat head screw driver in the side of the door where the actuator was and pried the damn thing off

and guess what... I only ended up breaking one clip which means the door panel fit right back on without having to pay 400 to "diagnose", no trip to the dealer, and no buying new clips. After I opened it, I sprayed the whole damn locking system down with wd-40 and I am glad I did this myself.
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  #8  
Old 04-06-2011, 07:27 AM
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menhir menhir is offline
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Sometimes the "old school" approach works best!
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  #9  
Old 04-06-2011, 07:37 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Added, for future reference, to the bestlinks.

I was having trouble crafting a keyword-rich sentence for the /search(F3); but this is what I came up with ...

- How to open a single stuck shut locked front or rear closed E39 door from a broken door latch/lock (1) (2)

As always, improvements are welcome.
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  #10  
Old 04-27-2011, 07:51 AM
guisar guisar is offline
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Once the actuator is out....

Quote:
Originally Posted by hogatoga View Post

then I stuck a flat head screw driver in the side of the door where the actuator was and pried the damn thing off
Once the actuator was off, did the just open? I got into the door, removed the actuator but neither the cable nor the exterior door handle will open the door. It's unclear to me once you have access how you release the cam which holds the cog which rotates to allow the door to open. Any hints appreciated.


'98 540i three door (at the moment)
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  #11  
Old 05-01-2013, 10:51 PM
setconstr setconstr is online now
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I found some good old posts and I think you have diagnosed it right some people say just keep trying to open it and you may get lucky. http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...ht=cabinetman2
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  #12  
Old 06-02-2015, 07:09 PM
BimmerBoyJacob BimmerBoyJacob is offline
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Mein Auto: 1985 BMW e30 325e
I had the same problem

I just got my first car I'm 15 I got a 1985 BMW e30 325e for 300$ at a impound and it was so cheap so it had some flaws but when it got here (they brought it on a tow truck because it's behind on tags) I tried opening the passenger door and the handle would move but the little lock thing wouldn't budge I tried unlocking the door from the outside I tried pulling the lock up from the inside... Didn't work. And I stopped for a couple hours then I came back and this time when I went to unlock it from the door on the outside I held the key to the side as far as it would go and then I pulled on the handle and BOOM it opened now I have to open like that from now on lol, still can't open it from the inside though
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  #13  
Old 12-09-2015, 06:59 PM
White528iSyd White528iSyd is offline
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Mein Auto: E39 528i
Door won't open door will not open

I had this problem with our 528i E39 1996. the passenger door seixed and could not be opened by internal or external handle. The lock indicator went up and down electrically/electronically via the actuator but the door would not open.

I tried spraying WD40 or aerosol liquid lubrication into accesible areas. I tried multiple door handle operations inside and outside. I tried thumping against the inside and outside of the door to unjamb it.

I read about making a hole in the door lining to break up the actuator and the risks with the air bag (DISCONNECT THE BATTERY FIRST AND LET THE CIRCUIT DISCHARGE FOR 15 MINUTES BEFORE MAUCKING ABOUT WITH THE EXPLOSIVE AIRBAG!!!), but was reluctant to do this but it seemed the way to go. BUT then I found this and it worked for me. door open, no damage done.

I used a hacksaw blade as a thin stiff insert between the window wound down and fully open and the inside rubber seal to get down to the locking mechanism at the rear of the outside door handle - thst is where you aim for, and then move the tool around feeling for a lever you can push down that is a mechanism that is springy and you can move. After a while of doing this and feeling around with the tool. You can manipulate the inside and outside door handles while doing this trying to open the door.

Finally it opened, no damage! I did scratch the window tint a liitle bit because i used a hacksaw blade but no big deal. Then I used my finger to operate the door lock clasp instead of closing the door again, and opened and closed the mechnism with both door handles many times to ensure it was working. I sprayed al parts with WD40 and removdd the little opening cover next to the lock on the normally concealed door edge to access into the lock area. Make sure you pull out the inner oval like section on this port hole as it comes out and then if you want to you can pull out the outer part of the port hole. At first I levered out the whole port hole cover but found I should have done it as a two step process. You cannot put it back in the hole in the door metal unless you take it apart as the two parts and put the base in before the cover.

Lubricate the lot and keep using the door as I suspect it was seized by moiture or disuse and became stuck as the locking pin that you can feel delatch when you slowly open the door latch with either handle with the door open and using a finger to reset the latch each time. Try practising with a door you can open first so you get the feel of it. Maybe it also teaches the other jammed door what you want it to do?? these cars are getting old and probably imprinting on the owners mentality, so be nice to it :-))
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  #14  
Old 12-09-2015, 07:10 PM
White528iSyd White528iSyd is offline
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Location: Sydney Australia
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 8
Mein Auto: E39 528i
Don't destroy anything till you try this!!!

Thanks to the person who posted this solution I read on the forum after Cabinet Man had lead the way but maybe didnt have to damage the door after all..

Quote:
Originally Posted by White528iSyd View Post
I had this problem with our 528i E39 1996. the passenger door seixed and could not be opened by internal or external handle. The lock indicator went up and down electrically/electronically via the actuator but the door would not open.

I tried spraying WD40 or aerosol liquid lubrication into accesible areas. I tried multiple door handle operations inside and outside. I tried thumping against the inside and outside of the door to unjamb it.

I read about making a hole in the door lining to break up the actuator and the risks with the air bag (DISCONNECT THE BATTERY FIRST AND LET THE CIRCUIT DISCHARGE FOR 15 MINUTES BEFORE MAUCKING ABOUT WITH THE EXPLOSIVE AIRBAG!!!), but was reluctant to do this but it seemed the way to go. BUT then I found this and it worked for me. door open, no damage done.

I used a hacksaw blade as a thin stiff insert between the window wound down and fully open and the inside rubber seal to get down to the locking mechanism at the rear of the outside door handle - thst is where you aim for, and then move the tool around feeling for a lever you can push down that is a mechanism that is springy and you can move. After a while of doing this and feeling around with the tool. You can manipulate the inside and outside door handles while doing this trying to open the door.

Finally it opened, no damage! I did scratch the window tint a liitle bit because i used a hacksaw blade but no big deal. Then I used my finger to operate the door lock clasp instead of closing the door again, and opened and closed the mechnism with both door handles many times to ensure it was working. I sprayed al parts with WD40 and removdd the little opening cover next to the lock on the normally concealed door edge to access into the lock area. Make sure you pull out the inner oval like section on this port hole as it comes out and then if you want to you can pull out the outer part of the port hole. At first I levered out the whole port hole cover but found I should have done it as a two step process. You cannot put it back in the hole in the door metal unless you take it apart as the two parts and put the base in before the cover.

Lubricate the lot and keep using the door as I suspect it was seized by moiture or disuse and became stuck as the locking pin that you can feel delatch when you slowly open the door latch with either handle with the door open and using a finger to reset the latch each time. Try practising with a door you can open first so you get the feel of it. Maybe it also teaches the other jammed door what you want it to do?? these cars are getting old and probably imprinting on the owners mentality, so be nice to it :-))
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