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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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  #26  
Old 02-11-2011, 04:31 AM
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Fudman Fudman is offline
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Looks like it's working fine now. Nice job!
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  #27  
Old 02-11-2011, 06:42 AM
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This thread is so Bluebee.
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  #28  
Old 02-24-2011, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flybot View Post
This thread is so Bluebee.
I do try to include as many pictures and hints as possible; so the next person can more easily follow the steps.

I did snap about a thousand pictures (literally) of the job but I haven't had the mojo to go through them to finish the DIY. Hopefully I will.

In the meantime, TWO people had the exact same problem in the last week (so a nicely detailed DIY, with no steps missing, would be useful).

Both of these are E39 drivers side window failures where the clips just let loose!

- 2000 540i Window Clips?
- Driver side window failure.

Last edited by bluebee; 02-24-2011 at 09:50 PM.
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  #29  
Old 03-03-2011, 01:09 PM
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Great work and awesome write up!
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  #30  
Old 03-03-2011, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flybot View Post
This thread is so Bluebee.
I love this comment. Bluebee's fingerprints (and footprints) are all over this board, and it's a good thing.
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  #31  
Old 03-16-2011, 08:14 AM
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540indiana 540indiana is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
Here's another partial explanation (who knows if it's right or wrong though):



So, that's at least two votes for peeling the vapor barrier (although a direction of "down low" is one and "front to back" is the other).

Who knows, though, if the speakers or airbag or other components were removed prior in that particular post (they don't say).
I am thinking of using a steamer to heat up the adhesive on the vapor barrier so it can peel off and reseal easier.

Anyone think this coud be a good way to remove the vapor barrier?
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  #32  
Old 03-16-2011, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540indiana View Post
Anyone think this coud be a good way to remove the vapor barrier?
Personally, while the hair-dryer trick won't hurt anything, I didn't need to and therefore I'd say it's overkill. But, if you think it will help, go for it.

See these links which are from very many people who removed their vapor barrier.
- REAR DOOR VAPOR BARRIER FAILS CAUSING WATER PUDDLES: improper adhesive used on rear door vapor barrier seals that allow rain water to fill the rear footwell (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) & sizes for the adhesive (1)

As I wrote in a prior post above, all I did to remove the entire vapor barrier is the following (reused from above):
Quote:
  1. With the center plastic clip, the airbag, and the speaker tube removed, it's now time to remove the vapor barrier.
  2. Starting from one corner, begin to gently pull back on the vapor barrier to release its grip on the door.
    • Note: Some people prefer to leave one edge of the vapor barrier in place so that re-alignment is perfect upon re-installation.
  3. With the vapor barrier removed, you now have full visual access to the window regulator mechanism for troubleshooting.
    • Note: In my case, this was as far as I needed to go since the two clamps on the bottom of my window had let go of the window.
    • All I needed to do was reinsert the window into those two clamps and tighten each of the P2 Phillips screws as tightly as I could twist the screwdriver.
    • I could not determine if Locktite is intended here so I did not use it.
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  #33  
Old 03-16-2011, 01:11 PM
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I fixed my window today. I was lucky as well with the window just being pulled out of the tabs. The steamer worked fantasic. I would suggest using gloves.
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  #34  
Old 03-26-2011, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540indiana View Post
I was lucky as well with the window just being pulled out of the tabs.
This is fantastic. Quite a few people fix this for zero dollars.

BTW, today, yet another SRS airbag was lit because folks don't heed the warnings or read the DIYs that show exactly how to avoid the SRS airbag fault!
- Reset ABS, Air Bag & Traction Control Lites

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  #35  
Old 04-05-2011, 10:16 AM
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For the record, today, yet another umpteenth sophomoric 'professional' Indy mechanic tripped the SRS airbag light when working on the window regulators:
- Airbag Light came on after regulator repair

Since this junior mistake is so common, I'll start appending these airbag-light mishaps to the bestlinks so we have a better reference when the next one (and the one after that) occurs!

- What can cause an SRS airbag light (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) & what tools reset the fault (1) (2) (3) (4) & what happens when window regulator fixers disconnect the airbag before the battery or they connect the battery before disconnecting the airbag (1).

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  #36  
Old 04-22-2011, 09:58 PM
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QSilver7's pictures from this thread ...
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Auto up window switch broke

... are so good that I have to bring them over here so that others can find them if/when they use this DIY to rip open their driver's side door.
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  #37  
Old 06-19-2011, 11:44 PM
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For the record, cn90 posted, in this thread today, a very nice window regulator video:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > e39 rear window removal
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  #38  
Old 06-30-2011, 05:00 AM
Belfast_stu Belfast_stu is offline
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Hi I have just fixed my driver side front window but now I think the vapour barrier is leaking. Iv'e ordered the stuff to fix it, just have a quick question. When I sorted the window I didn't disconnect the battery, I'm going to when doing the vapour barrier but I just wanted to check that there will be no side effects ie regarding the radio code or other electrics in the car. This may be a daft question but I'm a novice at this!


Cheers

Stu
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  #39  
Old 06-30-2011, 08:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belfast_stu View Post
When I sorted the window I didn't disconnect the battery
I'm not sure what 'sorted the window' means in Irish; but I will reiterate what's already in the links quoted.

You MUST disconnect (at least) the negative cable of the battery BEFORE disconnecting the (yellow) airbag harness connector in the door (or else you will get a SRS dashboard light that will require resetting with a tool you probably do not have).

Nothing will happen to the E39 'radio' (actually the MID) except it will lose its settings (radio stations & clock mostly).

Nothing else (to my knowledge) is affected by disconnecting the battery (Lord knows, since I have the problematic DICE Silverline, I've had to disconnect the battery hundreds of times to reset the DICE out of ATTACHED mode).
- Questions for e39 DICE Silverline users ( 1 2 3) by Fudman

Last edited by bluebee; 06-30-2011 at 08:19 AM.
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  #40  
Old 07-01-2011, 02:57 AM
Belfast_stu Belfast_stu is offline
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Cheers Bluebee, I didn't disconnect the airbag that time so I must have got away with it. When I'm doing the vapour barrier I'll definately disconnect the battery. Thanks for the advice.

Stu
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  #41  
Old 07-25-2011, 07:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belfast_stu View Post
Thanks for the advice.
We all pitch in to help one another!

The record is improved little by little (what BobDMac calls the process of "Incrementalism").

In fact, cn90 just wrote a wonderful REAR door window regulator DIY today that all can further benefit from:
E39 (1997 - 2003) > DIY: 1998 528I REAR Window Regulator Repair

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  #42  
Old 10-09-2011, 01:11 PM
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For the record, there is a similar problem reported here:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Driver side window failure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunset Hogan View Post
I went to put my window down, and it was frozen stuck. After a second press of the button, the window motor went down, but not my window. The guy at the dealer said it was my regulator or something, but the motor seems to be working fine. ... Anyone have a DIY link or suggestions?
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  #43  
Old 10-10-2011, 10:36 PM
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For the crosslinked record, there is a nice BavAuto blog on replacing an E46 cable-operated window regulator with side air bags (which should be similar for the E39) ...
- BMW DIY Video E46 Door Panel Removal & Replacing Window Regulator or Motor

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  #44  
Old 11-26-2011, 04:47 PM
Gman007 Gman007 is offline
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Thank You!

1st big Thank You to bluebee...much obliged to you for all your information!!!

By chance anyone have part number or source for the rubber strips in the mounting clamps for the window? Found mine had ripped apart.

Thank you
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  #45  
Old 11-27-2011, 09:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gman007 View Post
By chance anyone have part number or source for the rubber strips in the mounting clamps for the window?
I doubt anyone would have that part number, by chance.

You just have to look it up:
BMWfans phantom diagrams (1) & Realoem nominal prices by part number (1) & EACTuning actual prices by part number (1) & BMW of South Atlanta actual prices by part number (1) & Maxmillian BMW prices by part number (1) & the most often recommended parts suppliers (1) & what BMW E39 parts & supplies are best to buy OEM (1)& joining BMWCCA to lower parts costs (1) (2) & what parts to always get OEM (1) which BMW dealers match prices (1) & in situ pictures of common parts of the M54 engine (1)

For example, for my driver side door, the lookup is:
- 2002 BMW 525i => Vehicle trim => Front door => EL.FRONT DOOR WINDOW LIFTING MECHANISM

And, the part number appears to be:
- 07, Edge protection, Qty=2, PN=51338257721, Nominal Price=$1.03

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  #46  
Old 11-28-2011, 07:27 AM
Gman007 Gman007 is offline
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Thank You

Thank you bluebee!!! Now if the dealership will sell me a couple (and have them in stock)....
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  #47  
Old 11-28-2011, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gman007 View Post
Thank you bluebee!!! Now if the dealership will sell me a couple (and have them in stock)....
I'm pretty sure the dealer will sell 'em to you since they have a bona fide part number (they may or may not have 'em in stock though).

As for the exact part number, you need to replicate my steps, but enter in the information for your vehicle.

I gave you all the links to follow - the only thing you need to change is the vehicle model & date of birth.

Please do keep us informed as to how it works out - and - as always, a picture of the parts you guy would be helpful, on or off the vehicle.
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  #48  
Old 11-29-2011, 09:55 AM
Gman007 Gman007 is offline
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Dang

Well I was playing with it last night and noticed the pulley wheel in upper left hand corner was cracked as well as the cable connection was broken. Broke down and ordered whole new regulator from Bavarian since the dealership parts department hasn't bothered to get back to me. Sorta ticked at that since I just dropped a grand there the week before getting front tie rods replaced and an alignment. Between that and getting new tires....my babies been expensive as of late.

Thank you very much bluebee for your assistance and the wonderful depth and quality of information that you provide.
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  #49  
Old 12-06-2011, 08:25 PM
Dilligaf-IA Dilligaf-IA is offline
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Great write up bluebee, I think I am going to have to open my door up this coming weekend if I can find the time. I went to put my window down this evening and it was frozen (Iowa is getting frigid). Well it paused for a second trying to go down and then a slight pop and I could hear the motor working going down and up but no window movement. My first thought was the window regulator had went, but I have had to replace those in other vehicles and when they go they usually have a grinding / popping noise from the cable getting all jacked up. Good to read through this post as it gives me hope that mine has just popped out of the tabs... Now to figure out something to warm the garage this weekend.

Edit to add that I pulled it apart this evening (12-12-11) to find the problem as described in this thread, reattached the clips to the window and it's working fine again :-)

Last edited by Dilligaf-IA; 12-12-2011 at 07:53 PM. Reason: finished the project
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  #50  
Old 12-22-2011, 12:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dilligaf-IA View Post
reattached the clips to the window and it's working fine again
Thanks for adding this information.

Others will benefit from knowing what to look for.

In addition, these diagrams from this thread today should come in handy for others:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > BMW Auto Up Window - Cut Finger Off

Quote:
Originally Posted by QSilver7 View Post





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