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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is the first day I have had this problem. Got in the car to visit Mom, put the top down, and, enjoyed the ride over there. While it was not raining at the time, the back windshield did have raindrops on it when I lowered the top. We go out to the car, but, the top does not go up. I get alternating error messages of "Retractable top not locked" and "Retractable top!" on the dash and the heads up. Plus, I get a message on the center display and annoying dinging that takes awhile to stop. I have tried all combinations of pressing the button along with: windows up/down, engine running/not, park/drive, drive the car for awhile, let it sit for awhile, etc. Generally after pressing the button for the top to go down and then I try to raise it, I hear the motors try for about 4 seconds before they give up. Sometimes the windows go up/down at the same time, but, most of the time not. I am not able to find any physical impediments to the panels.

I understand about that panel in the trunk that has to be locked down for the top to go down, but, as I said the top went down with no problem or error messages. Looking in the trunk, the panels look like they are in the appropriate positions and that other locked panel does not look out of place. I have not had to do any work on this car and it is my first BMW. I have an average/good amount of experience fixing my own cars over the years, so, I am not afraid to try to fix this myself. My other car is a 1990 Mustang, so, I don't have any experience with cars with computers.

All of the information I have found via Google does not address the 4 series convertibles, so, in the few videos I have found, I don't seem to have the same parts. Also, I do not have one of those devices to plug in and give me those code numbers. I was planning on buying one of those eventually, so, if y'all have any recommendations for one I am all ears. I do have the original owner's manual from BMW. I understand that some cars have various ways of things to push to reset something and/or to put the car into a diagnostics-type mode, but, I don't know how to do that.

Also, this may be a separate issue, but, I figure it is worth mentioning. Starting today, when I back up, the center panel does not show the rear camera view. I just get that overhead generic view that would let me know about object(s) I am about to hit. Occasionally I will hit a button and not know what it does (or what I am doing), so, I don't know if this is a related issue.

The immediate problem is that the top will not go up and I don't have a garage or carport. So, if it is a relatively serious problem but the top can go up manually somehow, that is good enough for now. Any suggestions, guesses, or, experiences that y'all wish to share would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well - GOOD NEWS!

I stopped by an Advance Auto Parts to get them to hook up their OBD to see what codes it would throw, but, none showed up. So, I pressed on the button to show him the dashboard error message - and the top went up! When I got home, I was able to lower and raise the top again.

So, my guess as to what happened was that I put the top down when the rear window had lotsa large rain drops on it, even though it was not raining at the time. I think that the water got onto a sensor or two thousand and decided that the top was "not locked". But, sitting out in the Georgia heat (over 90 the past few days) evaporated the water and the sensor(s) now work properly. So, the lesson? Wipe off excess water from the roof and rear glass before lowering the top.
 

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Well - GOOD NEWS!

I stopped by an Advance Auto Parts to get them to hook up their OBD to see what codes it would throw, but, none showed up. So, I pressed on the button to show him the dashboard error message - and the top went up! When I got home, I was able to lower and raise the top again.

So, my guess as to what happened was that I put the top down when the rear window had lotsa large rain drops on it, even though it was not raining at the time. I think that the water got onto a sensor or two thousand and decided that the top was "not locked". But, sitting out in the Georgia heat (over 90 the past few days) evaporated the water and the sensor(s) now work properly. So, the lesson? Wipe off excess water from the roof and rear glass before lowering the top.
There are water drain channels which are easily clogged. There are a lot of YouTube videos about this; the drains are in front of each rear wheel. One of mine clogged, too.
 
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