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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello All
I'm hoping someone can tell me if there's a way to fix the "AM" reception on my radio.
There is so much static that it's almost impossible to make out the broadcast.
Is there a way to ground it if indeed grounding would help?
I was told that the it might be the aerial which is embedded in the rear window and the window would need to replaced to fix the problem! Wow, this sounds (no play on words)almost unbelievable!
Any thoughts?
Thanks
It's a 2002 E46
 

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Keeping it surreal
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43,081 Posts
Hello All
I'm hoping someone can tell me if there's a way to fix the "AM" reception on my radio.
There is so much static that it's almost impossible to make out the broadcast.
Is there a way to ground it if indeed grounding would help?
I was told that the it might be the aerial which is embedded in the rear window and the window would need to replaced to fix the problem! Wow, this sounds (no play on words)almost unbelievable!
Any thoughts?
Thanks
It's a 2002 E46
Truth is, the rear windshield-mounted antenna is one of the biggest pieces of crap ever devised. Convertible E46s have a proper fender-mount mast antenna, and the difference in reception is startling....
 

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OP, there’s an RF amp located in the left “C” pillar. The “C” pillar is the part of the roof that merges with the rear fender.

Remove the reading light by gently pulling it out. Disconnect the electrical connector. Remove the 10mm (8mm?) bolt. GENTLY pull the cover off. Be persistent but gentle as it’s old and brittle. You’ll see a silver box with 2 coaxial cables and a multi-wire connector. That’s the RF signal amp. One if the 2 coaxial cables is for the AM signal. The other is obviously fir the FM signal. Remove both coaxial connectors and clean them with electrical contact cleaner. Clean the RF amp’s coaxial connectors too. Reinstall the coaxial cables (make sure they go back into the same place). Tighten them firmly by hand. Reinstall the cover and the light. Now, the RF amp could be bad, so test it BEFORE you reinstall the cover. Be advised that BMW changed the RF amp design for model year 2003. Your amp should have “315mhz” on the label. Newer amps gave “425mhz” on the label. So if you go to an auto recycler make sure the “new” amp has the same part #.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the responses.
It seems like the engineering geniuses had a bad day when they devised this flawed system.
I guess I'll have to be content with the AM stations.
I think I'll have to pray for an "Immaculate Reception"
 

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Blue428i
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I have a 2015 F33 convertible. My AM reception went to static when the top was in the trunk. I removed the interior trim piece above the armrest in the back seat on the drivers side (I think the trim piece on the passenger side has an FM antenna). This trim piece contains the AM antenna that functions when the top is down (the rear window also has an antenna). The antenna was disconnected. Plugged it back in and all was well.

To take the trim piece off: 1) remove the 25 mm Torx from the trim piece. There are two holes but only one screw in the front hole. 2) Carefully pry out the two plastic body rivets that are invisible but embedded in the soft rubber piece at the front of the trim piece. Use a thin pry bar to work under the rubber trim pad and work the rivets out. 3) Pull the trim piece out working from front to back but be aware that the antenna is built into it and is connected to a splitter in the car so don't jerk the trim piece completely off and tear your antenna. 4) Once the trim is loose you have enough slack to inspect the connections to the splitter.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
AM Reception

Hi Dennis
Thanks for your suggestions. It seems like the antenna is actually embedded in the rear window in these models so to fix the problem one has to replace the window!
I find it amazing that many years after BMW began making cars they would know better.
Do you think if they read this they might cover the costs? It would be great PR if they did but
I won't hold my breath.
All the best
Greg
 

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Nope they won’t cover costs or fix anything.

At the age of this vehicle the only recalls would strictly be for safety issues.

You could always add an auxiliary antenna.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest
 
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