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Job done. Thanks for the replies and advice on here. It is not as easy on a E46 as on some other models - but not impossible - you just need to be patient and follow these steps.
1. Remove the glovebox thingy on drivers side – two screws (not sure this was absolutely necessary actually)
2. Remove the panel under the steering wheel - three cross head screws and some clips - unclip the wire to the courtesy light; push the grey clip on the OBD port towards the front of the car and the connector will come away from the trim; unclip the wires to the speaker (may only be on HK equipped cars?).
3. Find the FSR - plenty of pics on the web already. You will see that there is a motor housing in the way.
4. Remove the motor from the housing - there is a small clip at the rear (ie the section nearest the rear of the car) - push it in and the motor can be pulled down and disengaged from the actuator that it sits in. Note that if the car is warm then the actuator could move as it self centres as the heating system cools down - this may make it a little more tricky to re-fit - my suggestion is either disconnect the battery before starting the job or do the job once the car is stone cold. No chance of the flap moving that way.
5 Now the worst bit. There are two torx T20 screws holding the housing in place. The bottom one is easy to see; the other is impossible. I had been told that you could see it with a mirror – well I looked and looked and could not see it. The screw you can see is at the bottom right of the motor housing – the one you can not see is at the top of the housing and to the left. If you feel on the top of the housing there is a semi circle recess about the size of a screwdriver – and the second torx screw is at the bottom of this recess – it’s head faces exactly the same direction as the lower one that you can see. I found the best way to undo it was without trying to crick my neck to see it – just put a T20 torx driver down the slot and feel around until locking into the screw head. You will need a screwdriver with a total length of around 150 – 170mm – my 200mm driver handle fouled the steering column – in the end I used a torx headed “allen key” tool – nice and slim and not too long. The tip here is that you do not need to remove this screw – just loosen it – you will then have enough room to remove the FSR. Re-assembly is a lot easier - you do not have to find the screw hole - just find the screw head again.
6. Now it is easy. Remove the wiring connector to the FSR – held with a spring clip in the connector – just push the ends in and pull it off. The FSR is held in with two more T20 torx screws – the bottom one very easy to get at and the top one recessed a little – a magnetic bit holder is useful here to stop the screw disappearing into the centre console. Now the only thing holding the FSR is the plastic clip – push it out of the way and remove the FSR.
7. Replacement is the reverse – very straightforward. If you have trouble wiggling the FSR into the housing and past the clip put a hairdryer on the whole area and warm it all up – should just push straight in then.

Hope this helps; BMW dealers may tell you that a computer “re-set” is needed – and they charge for that – no idea why – mine works fine no re-set needed and no warning lights showing.
 

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Guys, at the risk of me sounding like a complete n00b, what does this do?

Thanks,
Psy
 

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I know it is an old thread but thank you for the how-to, my fan was pulsing so I knew it was the FSR but what I couldn't find was the last screw (top one) in the actuator after looking through numerous pictures, your description was extremely helpful. Now All I need to do is patch up my hands and rest my back
 

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Not hijacking. But as a few know already I had to do this job as well recently. I figured it was worth adding the link to a guide with pictures to the threads dealing with it rather than have people searching all over the place for guides and help only to not find it for ages.

E46 Final stage resistor replacement with pictures is here

http://www.diablo944.co.uk/hedgehog.htm
 
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can be a bit of a bitch can't it

I keep running into the hedgehog questions even when not looking for them, so yet another blatant plug for the photo guide. I am not spamming here, but I am feeling a bit guilty as it has been put in a few threads related to the issues of the FSR. I only add it to those discussing it who will end up on these pages as it will help a lot to actually see what you are going to do as well as just descriptions


http://www.diablo944.co.uk/hedgehog.htm
 

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hedgeog

Thanks Diablo944 your instructions were great, finally got that last screw out, everything working great. By the way if anyone wants a spare screw for the housing, ive got one. after to days trying to get the f*&ker out theres no way its going back in.:lol
 

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can be a bit of a bitch can't it

I keep running into the hedgehog questions even when not looking for them, so yet another blatant plug for the photo guide. I am not spamming here, but I am feeling a bit guilty as it has been put in a few threads related to the issues of the FSR. I only add it to those discussing it who will end up on these pages as it will help a lot to actually see what you are going to do as well as just descriptions


http://www.diablo944.co.uk/hedgehog.htm
Hi mate, first off I have to thank you. The guide you did for changing the final stage resistor was excellent. If not for it and all the illustrations with it I know I would be a lot more out of pocket than the £36 I paid for the new hedgehog. Unfortunately the screw that causes all the problems caused one for me too! I thought I had it out however it was the one attatched to the resistor. I eventually got the housing for the stepper motor out through brute force...I snapped the top where the guilty screw is.
The thing is, attatched to the motor housing is a metal arm. Unfortunately for me this isn't mentioned in your guide. After installing new resistor and while putting everything back together I saw a hole that looked like it would accomodate the metal arm so thats where it went I was just wondering if you knew if this is what I was meant to do and also what the arm does.
Once again thanks for your guide and I look forward to hearing from you.
Cheers, Ged.
 

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Just to add that I changed the hedgehog in my 2002 330D today. Diablo's guide was a very useful so thanks very much for that.

As someone has already said, the key is the correct length tool for the second torx screw. If anyone is interested, I went to my local Halfords and bought their allen key style torx set for £13.99. The T20 key is perfect for the job and had I had this from the start I think the job would have taken maybe 45 minutes to an hour to do (as it was it took me 3 hours after using the wrong lenght torx and hunting high and low for a suitable one). I'm not particularly skilled at this type of thing so it's very achieveable for an amateur if you follow the guide and use the right tools.
 

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I suspect I have a failed FSR. I did get very slight fluctuation of fan speed occasionally. But over the weekend my blower fan has stopped working altogether. No matter what setting on the air con control panel the fan does not work at all. Has anyone else had this symptom with a failed FSR. Or am I looking at at faulty blower motor itself?
 

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I suspect I have a failed FSR. I did get very slight fluctuation of fan speed occasionally. But over the weekend my blower fan has stopped working altogether. No matter what setting on the air con control panel the fan does not work at all. Has anyone else had this symptom with a failed FSR. Or am I looking at at faulty blower motor itself?
The E46 we had in the other day had the interior fan not working, it was due to the FSR/FSU, I expect the customers car had also had fan fluctuation as well.
 

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Just to add that I changed the hedgehog in my 2002 330D today. Diablo's guide was a very useful so thanks very much for that.

As someone has already said, the key is the correct length tool for the second torx screw. If anyone is interested, I went to my local Halfords and bought their allen key style torx set for £13.99. The T20 key is perfect for the job and had I had this from the start I think the job would have taken maybe 45 minutes to an hour to do (as it was it took me 3 hours after using the wrong lenght torx and hunting high and low for a suitable one). I'm not particularly skilled at this type of thing so it's very achieveable for an amateur if you follow the guide and use the right tools.
Have to echo this, I gave up on this job ans went to halfords, bought the set of torx keys. It was a bit gauling to pay so much, but the job was easy. Would have taken 30mins if I had the tool at the beginning .
 
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