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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:16 PM
cparth08 cparth08 is offline
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Door to gas cap

when i push on the door to get to the gas cap, it should pop open but won't. can't pull it open either. any ideas please?
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  #2  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:18 PM
wongtomm wongtomm is offline
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unlock the doors
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  #3  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:23 PM
cparth08 cparth08 is offline
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did that, didn't work
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  #4  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:29 PM
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MMME30W MMME30W is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cparth08
when i push on the door to get to the gas cap, it should pop open but won't. can't pull it open either. any ideas please?
Well...would need some more info before offering suggestions.

When was it last working?

Anything happen recently (accident, small children, ...) to the car?

Is the car reasonably clean i.e. no mud, snow, ice on or around the gas door?

Possible to "jiggle" the door to get something in behind it, maybe like a flexible plastic spoon or similar?
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  #5  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:32 PM
cparth08 cparth08 is offline
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was last working a week ago. no accidents. had it in for inspection 2 days ago, clean as new. i put a credit card and a key behind and messed around, no luck.
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  #6  
Old 05-04-2005, 07:47 PM
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MMME30W MMME30W is offline
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Hmm...

Not sure if your car is like mine (03 E46) but I had a quick look just now:

- when the car is unlocked, the gas cap door is not held in place except by the spring of the door
- when the car is locked, there is a deadbolt which engages in a slot in the lower rear of the door
- on mine I can feel the deadbolt engaging and disengaging the slot when the car is locked and unlocked

Can you lock/unlock several times and see if the solenoid is able to be felt engaging / disengaging in the slot? If not, the fault is there, i.e. possibilities are 1) fuse to solenoid circuit 2) solenoid has failed 3) wiring has failed. Without a schematic hard to tell where to start.

I don't know if it would be possible to remove any of the interior of the trunk near the gas cap to see what's going on?

My user's manual contains the following statement:

"If an electrical malfunction occurs, you can unlock the fuel filler door manually:

1) undo the trim panel on the right side of the luggage compartment
2) pull the knob with the fuel pump symbol.

Good luck...
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Old 05-04-2005, 09:11 PM
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markl53 markl53 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingspan
Hmm...

Not sure if your car is like mine (03 E46) but I had a quick look just now:

- when the car is unlocked, the gas cap door is not held in place except by the spring of the door...
On my '05 330i, the gas cap door also uses a "click type" latch even when the doors are unlocked. To open the door, I have to press slightly inward to release the catch mechanism. Same with closing. Again, this scenario is independent of the lock plunger which engages when you lock the doors. If yours has this type of latch, maybe the release mechanism is stuck. I'm not sure the emergency release pull in the trunk works on that part or just the plunger part if it's stuck...
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Old 05-04-2005, 09:14 PM
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as I recall there is a means by which the door can be unlatched in case of a failure of the solenoid.. .perhaps behind the carpet in the trunk? It's in the manual...Sounds like that is where the problem is if unlocking your doors doesn't work...

Hope this helps...
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Old 05-05-2005, 01:16 PM
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My car has a little green knob on the trunk that you can pull, supposedly will release the gas door lock... good luck!
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Old 05-06-2005, 04:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markl53
On my '05 330i, the gas cap door also uses a "click type" latch even when the doors are unlocked. To open the door, I have to press slightly inward to release the catch mechanism. Same with closing. Again, this scenario is independent of the lock plunger which engages when you lock the doors. If yours has this type of latch, maybe the release mechanism is stuck. I'm not sure the emergency release pull in the trunk works on that part or just the plunger part if it's stuck...
Agreed, but on mine you can open the flap if the car is unlocked by just sticking a finger nail under and lifting. There is no "catch" on the "clicker". But I see what you mean...
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  #11  
Old 05-06-2005, 05:13 PM
allaboutme allaboutme is offline
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just to be sure you might have to have all the doors unlocked to be able to push open the gas door... but that might not be your problem.
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  #12  
Old 05-07-2005, 02:47 PM
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markl53 markl53 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingspan
Agreed, but on mine you can open the flap if the car is unlocked by just sticking a finger nail under and lifting. There is no "catch" on the "clicker". But I see what you mean...
You're right, I just happened to check this when I filled up earlier today. The "clicker" does not hold the door captive so that can't cause his problem. I haven't figured out if the purpose of the thing is just to move the door outward for easy opening, or if it's magnetic as well to hold the door when pressed in.
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