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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I've posted about this before, with nothing really resolved. Here is the situation:

The 2001 540iA that I own was purchased originally by my father in December of 2000. As my fathers place of business was next door to his residence, the vehicle was always garage kept.

After purchasing the car from my father, I had the vehicle parked outside in the winter of 2004 for approximately 3 days (the longest it has been left outside). I noticed that there was water at the top of the driver's side A-pillar. It was minimal, however, still wet to the touch. I have had an autoglass technician confirm that it is not the windshield (the original windshield is still in the vehicle).

My dealer has also taken a look at it (checked roof drains) and have concluded that the sunroof cassette may have a small crack which is letting water in (albeit very slow).

This vehicle has never been in an accident, and nothing has happened to the vehicle to have changed it's physical properties. As it was always garaged kept, and there was virtually no way of knowing a leak existed, would BMW do anything to rectify this issue?

I park outside in an open parking lot for approximately 11 hours per day, so under heavy rain, the small leak does allow water into the car. I realize that since the warranty has expired, it is not covered, however, if it is indeed a defect from the factory, will BMW cover the cost of repair? Or who can I pose this question too? They must have had experiences with some sort of defect that would have easily gone unnoticed for quite a while, until something suddenly changed i.e. always having it garage kept to parking outside in the rain for several days.

Thanks everyone,

Simpson

The thing of it is, it's really expensive to fix it, and right now I don't have the funds to fix it. And if it is a defect and the cassette is cracked, I think BMW should pay for it.
 

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Interesting. My 2002 525i (owned for two weeks now) leaked in the same place when we had a recent downpour (my first with this car). The dealer tried to replicate the problem, but could not. I however, found that if I pour water from a cup into the gutter area that water gushes down the A pillar. The dealer checked the hoses and indicated they were fine. We are going to see if it happens again before we go to the extreme of removing the "cassete." I will try to keep you posted. I have 10 months of the original warranty left so I am covered. I am sorry to say that you are probably not. If I figure out what the fix is I will relate it to you. That way you may be able to avoid alot of a mechanics wasted time looking for the real problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
ISU-ConE, I just replied in your thread. Yeah, if you can find out what it is, and let me know, I'd really appreciate it. I discovered the problem during a heavy downpour when I had to park outside and it was right after my warranty expired. I pleaded with the dealer saying that I had always parked underground so there was no way of knowing a defect existed.

I even e-mailed BMW several times over the past year and no responses. I'm so busy that I just gave up. Maybe I'll have to take it back up again. This whole situation about them not getting back to me has pissed me off so much that I'm thinking of switching over to MB.
 

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I would try talking to a service advisor at The BMW Store on Burrard. Ask for Kevin Sosa, he's a very nice guy, perhaps he can help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah, I contacted BMW Canada again and BMWNA. No luck. I'll try out Kevin Sosa at the BMW Store. Thanks.

ISU-ConE, let me know if you get anything out of it, at least what's causing it.
 

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Sorry, I stopped by The BMW Store last Saturday, and they tell me Kevin Sosa left last year, and is now an RCMP officer in Burnaby! Oh, well...perhaps someone else there can be of assistance. Heck I would try all the area dealers, and see if you can find a sympathetic ear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
oh well,

I guess I'll try to check out all of the local dealers and see what happens.
 

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samps said:
Yeah, I contacted BMW Canada again and BMWNA. No luck. I'll try out Kevin Sosa at the BMW Store. Thanks.

ISU-ConE, let me know if you get anything out of it, at least what's causing it.
They looked at the hose connection to the cassete. It was fine. They inspected the drain lines as they run down the A pillar and said they are in the proper locations and not pinched or kinked. They blew out the drain lines too in case there were any spiders in them. I poured a coffee cup of water into the cassette gutter as they watched. It ran right down the A pillar. They said that did not matter. Apparently they feel that the gutter is not designed to handle that much water at once. :rolleyes: It overflows internally and then runs down the A pillar (the only way out). They next sat with me in the car as a tech ran water over the roof with a hose. We could not get it to happen that way. They wanted me to, "wait and see."

Well, yesterday it rained really hard. The result was a dry interior. :D The only thing I can surmize is that if the sunroof does not close tight, maybe water gets in too fast and overflows the system. You might want to (if you haven't already) check the condition of the perimeter seal. Next observe the sunroof as it closes and see if the limits are set properly. Even a little gap or poor seal will let enough water in during a gully washer to overwhelm the drainage system. Apparently this is normal. I am fortunate, because I have nine months of the original warranty left to see if it happens again.

I also purchased a third party warranty (5 more years or 75,000 miles). I wanted the security of knowing I could get the car repaired whenever the occasion arose. I currently have only 16,000 miles on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
ISU-ConE, I replied in your thread. One thing to note, I also had a third party warranty. I tried to have the leaking sunroof looked at under the warranty...it wasn't covered. In fact, every little problem I had with the extended warranty they wouldn't cover it.

Before your BMW warranty runs out, check to see if the sunroof is covered. I paid a few thousand for my warranty and didn't use it once.
 

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samps said:
ISU-ConE, I replied in your thread. One thing to note, I also had a third party warranty. I tried to have the leaking sunroof looked at under the warranty...it wasn't covered. In fact, every little problem I had with the extended warranty they wouldn't cover it.

Before your BMW warranty runs out, check to see if the sunroof is covered. I paid a few thousand for my warranty and didn't use it once.
I used my last 3rdprty warranty on my Yukon to have a hub bearing on the front left replaced. It was effortless. I guess it depends on the kind of warranty. I think mine was what is called a bumper to bumper "exclusionary" warranty. It covers everything unless they exclude it in print. It was through WarrantyDirect.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah, read the fine print and ask that they explain what is included. I also had a bumper-to-bumper. The wording was so ambiguous that we argued about what it actually did and did not cover. The dealer was ok with the fix, however, the warranty company had changed ownership and the new company was hard to deal with. Just be careful.
 

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I had exactly the same leak in my '98 528i Touring shortly after I bought it secondhand a year ago. The "A" pillar was very wet and dripping onto the carpet. It only happened the once, so I feel it was possibly my inexperience with the car, not closing the roof properly.
 
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