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  #1  
Old 06-21-2019, 09:18 AM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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Stuck Hood Latch and my solution/s

First I would like to say that the hood opening "system" is a prime example of German over-engineering a non-existing problem.

I have a 2012 3351 Sport model, I like the car but it's the little things that ruin your day.

I've been having a problem with the passenger side hood latch not unlatching on the 2nd pull and you need someone help you. I only have < 50K on it I started seeing a few oil drops on the driveway, so took it in.

I'm told that the oil cap was bad and the oil pan gasket. $1200. Anyway, I decided that I'd verify that first. I also had them "adjust" the latch to correct that PITB. When I pick it up, "The latch cables are stretched". These cables are what appear to be high quality and I find them stretching doubtful.

I decided that I would mess with them and ended up with the driver's side 1/2 stuck and the passenger's side totally "locked". I went thru all of the forum suggestions and nothing worked. Someplace it said to cut off the catch and replace, I thought about that and looked up the cost of 2 new. With shipping less than $40. But another guy mentioned removing the tires and fender well and using a hook to unlatch. So I thought that I would give that a shot before cutting the catches. I had looked at how the latch worked, so I had an idea what you needed to PULL. On this model there is nothing that you can push that will open it. From the driver's wheel well you are really working in the dark. After awhile I moved to the other wheel and you can get your hand in and feel for the little plastic thing that the cable is pulling when it works. In my case the cable had popped out of the little plastic thing. FINALLY I got the hook just right and got it to the first "unlock" and finally unlocked and then like magic pulling on the latch in the car, I got the driver's side open.

In a perfect world, the design works, but with dirt, wear & rust, not so much. Since this is going to happen to everyone, I'd suggest that you get to understand how the latch works and where that plastic thing is so "in the dark" you can find it.

I took a 12gage wire and attached it to the side of the plastic thing with a solderless terminal and used a small screw to hold it. The placement of the screw traps the cable, so it can't pop out.and ran the wire into the wheel well. It worked pretty good but haven't tried it with the wheel back on, etc. I also silicon sprayed the cables and drowned the latches. It works now, tomorrow, I hope so. The bottom line is when you pull the cable the first time, it pulls that plastic part and it "releases" the latch one "latch". The problem occurs when you release the cable pull, the plastic part needs to "reset" and that unlatches another piece of the latch. That is where the problem lies, The cable needs to go back a certain distant for that allows those parts to move to the right position. If anything keeps that part from "resetting", you are going to fight it with 2 people.

Well, I hope this helps someone.
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  #2  
Old 06-21-2019, 03:46 PM
John MS John MS is offline
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Can the the hood release lever now be used to open the hood?
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Old 06-21-2019, 03:58 PM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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Yes, but sometimes the passenger side hangs up, so you need 2 people and mess with it. I drove it today and it says that the hood is open, so I still need to adjust the driver's side (I think) or find out what/where the sensor is that I might have messed up. On each latch there are wires and something, I didn't mess with them but hopefully, I can find a solution here.
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Old 06-21-2019, 05:25 PM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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I'm still screwing with the hood sensor issue, but I did discover another solution to the latch not unlatching on the second pull. It's the passenger side hanging up and I placed a 3/4" scrap piece of wood near the fender under the hood. This places tension on the latch then go pull in the cabin again and it pops up.
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Old 06-21-2019, 06:51 PM
BMW 3XI BMW 3XI is offline
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Stuck Hood Latch and my solution/s

Detailed instructions below provided by another person.

https://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sh...php?p=10180281


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest

Last edited by BMW 3XI; 06-21-2019 at 06:58 PM.
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Old 06-21-2019, 09:35 PM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMW 3XI View Post
Detailed instructions below provided by another person.

https://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sh...php?p=10180281
Great write up.

My hood open sensor which is "pinned" to the right inside of the driver's side latch is saying hood open. Apparently, the older ones were adjustable and separate. The plug is located on the "wall" behind the headlight about midway in front of the air cleaner. I disconnected it and it still says open. I tried shorting the pins in the "car" part of the plug, but it still says open.

Anyone happen to know what the computer is expecting from that sensor. One would think either closed (most likely) when the hood is closed, open when you open the hood. BTW the sensor is now part of the latch assembly.

Last edited by pitzerwm; 06-21-2019 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 06-22-2019, 01:24 PM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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Update: This AM nothing worked and thankfully, I had added the "pull wire" in the wheel well and that enabled me to open the passenger side and then I was able to get the driver's side open. I took apart the latch again to try and figure out what that sensor sent. Turns out that it is a microswitch so an open or closed contact. I shorted out the car side and that didn't change anything. In the process, I realized that the driver's side wasn't actually fully locked, so I finally saw that the screw that I had attached the "pull wire" to was too long and catching the mechanism preventing it from "locking". God, I hate being stupid. I put in a shorter screw and reconnected the sensor plug and everything worked right EXCEPT that the 2 stage release is a pain and you need 2 people to open the hood. At least I can get it open.

I'm thinking that there is a trick getting the hood "catches" and the hood stops adjusted just right.
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Old 06-25-2019, 11:43 PM
mwrose mwrose is offline
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Passenger side cable

I also own a 2012 335i and the passenger side cable/ball come out of the plastic housing. You mentioned that you "finally got the hook just right", to get it to unlock. What did you mean by this? I have tried to put the cable/ball back into the plastic part, but there is just not enough room in there and I cannot really see what I am doing due to the confined space. Any suggestions?
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Old 06-26-2019, 10:23 AM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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Assuming that you got the hood open, you need to take the latch out. Don't worry about getting it back in the right place the bolt holes are close tolerance so you can't screw that up. Once you have it out a bit, turn it to your left and you can see the cable/ball and the plastic part. the cable goes in at the top and then falls back into a hole/slot.

This is where I suggest that you put a short screw into the plastic part trapping the cable/bulb and attach a decent size wire (12gage) and run it out the wheel well so that you can pull it if need be down the road.

If you haven't got the hood open, then obviously we are a different point. I wish that I had taken pics, but messed around with so many things and was super pissed off at BMW for building such a POS, that I didn't.

I jacked it up, removed the tire & the wheel well liner. If you have never seen the latch before it will be a bitch. On the passenger side you can see a lot better.
Get a lot of light into there, so you can see. At the back of the latch is the plastic piece that the cable hooks to. You will need a pretty stout piece of wire bent into a hook. You have to pull that plastic piece back, twice.

I hope this helps.

Last edited by pitzerwm; 06-26-2019 at 10:25 AM.
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Old 07-01-2019, 04:30 PM
mwrose mwrose is offline
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I was able to use a wire clothes hanger to pull that plastic lever that opens the hatch. Took apart the latching mechanism and put everything back together. This time I used a small piece of duct tape to keep cable/ball from coming out of plastic lever and a zip tie to keep cable from coming out of metal hook. I thought this would bring me a successful end to this problem but passenger side hood still would not unlatch. I am pretty sure it is due to a stretched cable. I did take your suggestion and attached a separate cable and ran it to the wheel well. I guess I will need to buy a new cabling system to everything correct.

Thanks for your suggestions.
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  #11  
Old 07-01-2019, 04:45 PM
pitzerwm pitzerwm is offline
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The issue is that it is a POS design. The cabling shouldn't have that small of tolerance that before 50K miles you need to replace it.
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