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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > DIY Guides > DIY: Front door lock actuator replacement (E90)



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  DIY: Front door lock actuator replacement (E90)
tracerit
01-17-2011
First of all, I just want to say that the instructions below were not written by me. The pictures were not taken by me. The user cisfinmark replied to one of my threads with this DIY guide when I mentioned I had door lock issues but he's no longer active (last login was in Oct 2010). I searched...
  #22  
By raybenz2011 on 07-27-2011, 11:50 PM
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Great Question that deserves an answer!

Quote:
Originally Posted by txusa03 View Post
How did you determined which door lock actuator was bad?
took me 3 hours.... it all started when i first got it(the car) when i pressed the lock button(on FOB) it made this grinding noise and the lock button(on Door) didn't move to it's locking position like the rest of them and so i manually had to lock it with the key(the passenger side and back doors lock and unlock so it had to be the DS door) after awhile i thought i could live with it NOPE! ran to a autobody shop where a friend of mine working there said he had seen this problem before(truly a Astro~physicist working for CERN and there big Haydron Collider) it's the >>> actuator <<< well i was real curious to see what it was he was talking about ??? that landed me here on this thread after a month of intense searching the internet when i found this DIY i read it thourally through and really got up the courage from the great pics! now a warning lamp indicator went off and i'm studying ***coding*** woooh hooo! ~BTW~ i ripped apart the old actuator and discovered the 2 Johnson 12 volt *DC motors with brass gears were burnt i thought it might have been stripped gears(NOPE! defective motors which were made poorly ? Go figure..... that perhaps is a manufacturing defect ?
Last edited by raybenz2011; 07-28-2011 at 06:24 AM. Reason: I almost forgot ?
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  #23  
By raybenz2011 on 07-28-2011, 03:03 PM
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Yes you have....

Quote:
Originally Posted by slowSwede View Post
Nice to see I saved someone a couple of minutes!
approximately 40 minutes.... at first i thought it wouldn't fit through but found you only need a one inch clearance to ram it through thanx for pointing it out slowSwede.... have a hap~happy spongy thingy
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  #24  
By jeffvb9 on 08-22-2011, 09:32 AM
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Thanks for this DIY. Just did this over the weekend. Took 3 hours roughly but as others have stated could do it in under 1 hour after having done it once and knowing whats what. I didnt unclip the window and left it up the entire time. One thing I want to mention that was not in this write up is where to access the allen bolt to undo the exterior door lock. Its on the side of the door and you have to remove the circular plastic plug to see it. So I did take the exterior lock off which helps a TON. Its very easy to put back and honestly dont see how anyone could remove the actuator without removing this. I did unbolt the two 10 mm bolt that hold the bar that runs vertically with the tension wire behind it. I was able to move the bar in at the bottom enough to slide out the actuator. You can push on the bar a decent amount and more than you think to get it out. Those two plugs that are attached to the actuator that hold the wire in place are a freaking nightmare to remove. I broke one of them and got one out ok. All in all its pretty straight forward.
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  #25  
By txusa03 on 08-23-2011, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffvb9 View Post
Thanks for this DIY. Just did this over the weekend. Took 3 hours roughly but as others have stated could do it in under 1 hour after having done it once and knowing whats what. I didnt unclip the window and left it up the entire time. One thing I want to mention that was not in this write up is where to access the allen bolt to undo the exterior door lock. Its on the side of the door and you have to remove the circular plastic plug to see it. So I did take the exterior lock off which helps a TON. Its very easy to put back and honestly dont see how anyone could remove the actuator without removing this. I did unbolt the two 10 mm bolt that hold the bar that runs vertically with the tension wire behind it. I was able to move the bar in at the bottom enough to slide out the actuator. You can push on the bar a decent amount and more than you think to get it out. Those two plugs that are attached to the actuator that hold the wire in place are a freaking nightmare to remove. I broke one of them and got one out ok. All in all its pretty straight forward.
did you change your driver's side door actuator as well/ Just wanted to get idea which door it was. Thanks for the additional input on the exterior door lock tip.
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  #26  
By jeffvb9 on 08-23-2011, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txusa03 View Post
did you change your driver's side door actuator as well/ Just wanted to get idea which door it was. Thanks for the additional input on the exterior door lock tip.
Yes it was the drivers side door.
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  #27  
By cisfinmark on 11-12-2011, 10:46 AM
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I purchased the wedge led bulb from www.superbrightleds.com

One year on and I have passenger side door lock issues and cannot/could not open the door from inside or out. I checked fuses 56 and 57. I had replaced 56 with a 20amp when I changed the driverís side door actuator and it was fine. Fuse 57 looked blown (black mark and break in the center looking side-on). After replacing fuse 57 with a 20amp fuse the doors still would not unlock. The driverís side door unlocked manually from the inside by pulling the handle, or outside with the key. Oddly, the driverís side rear would unlock at the same time. The passenger side doors still would not unlock.

Having recently purchased the enthusiast Bavarian Technic scan tool/cable to register a new battery, I hooked it up to see what I could find. Under the junction box electronics (JBE) folder I looked at the faults. There were two faults present and active:
A6D4
Relay ZV unlock
A6D5
Relay ZV lock

Under activations I clicked the reset ECU.
I then clicked the erase fault codes button, again under the JBE folder.

I also looked in the car access system (CAS) folder, but this seemed okay. Once I unplugged the tool, I tried the unlock button on the center dash and the doors unlocked!

Iím thinking it is just a matter of time before the front passenger side actuator goes so I just ordered one from Tischer BMW (getBMWparts.com) for $72.08. Prices have gone up in a year!
Last edited by cisfinmark; 11-12-2011 at 11:44 AM.
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  #28  
By Barrique_Red on 03-20-2012, 08:07 AM
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Hello.
I am not sure if this is good form, but I've posted a few more pics and some verbiage regarding the front door lock "kit" in another forum, on another site. Here are the links to my portions of the full forum thread. Mainly I provided a source for the locks, and a few pictures to enhance the ease of this DIY (see posts #38 and #40).

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...30#post6712730




mikey.
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  #29  
By pwong26 on 04-16-2012, 01:21 PM
Hello,

Thanks for this DIY, it looks pretty helpful. Did the price go up? Or did I pull up the wrong part? This is what I see when I use that part number at getbmwparts.com

2006 - BMW - 325I - N52 - L6 - 3.0L - GAS
ELECTRICAL / BODY ELECTRICAL / FRONT DOOR / LOCK ACTUATOR
51217202143 - LOCK ACTUATOR 3 Series; Left

MSRP Core Save Online Price
$90.10 $0.00 $18.02 $72.08

Also, I've read that you should normally replace both front actuators if even 1 is faulty, is it okay to replace just one?
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  #30  
By Barrique_Red on 05-10-2012, 06:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pwong26
Hello,

Thanks for this DIY, it looks pretty helpful. Did the price go up? Or did I pull up the wrong part? This is what I see when I use that part number at getbmwparts.com

2006 - BMW - 325I - N52 - L6 - 3.0L - GAS
ELECTRICAL / BODY ELECTRICAL / FRONT DOOR / LOCK ACTUATOR
51217202143 - LOCK ACTUATOR 3 Series; Left

MSRP Core Save Online Price
$90.10 $0.00 $18.02 $72.08

Also, I've read that you should normally replace both front actuators if even 1 is faulty, is it okay to replace just one?
Did you have any luck finding the 2-for-1 kit mentioned in the previous post? We replaced both of our front door lock actuators with that kit, and both are working fine so far (6 weeks ago).
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  #31  
By dzbmw on 05-14-2012, 04:26 PM
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Question Did I get ripped off by my SA?

My driver door would not unlock with the remote. Took car to dealer and since my warranty at this point only covers routine maintenance, the door lock actuator replacement was not covered. Had to pay $800 for the repair.

He told me that the driver and passenger side actuator had to be replaced as a pair. He charged me for both, although all the other doors were working fine. Is it true that you cannot replace just the driver side door lock actuator?
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  #32  
By rault18again on 05-21-2012, 09:40 PM
damn the price went super up on this part!
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  #33  
By asdflkijd on 05-29-2012, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dzbmw View Post
My driver door would not unlock with the remote. Took car to dealer and since my warranty at this point only covers routine maintenance, the door lock actuator replacement was not covered. Had to pay $800 for the repair.

He told me that the driver and passenger side actuator had to be replaced as a pair. He charged me for both, although all the other doors were working fine. Is it true that you cannot replace just the driver side door lock actuator?
You definitely got the shaft from your dealership. The parts only come as a pair but they don't need to be installed together. You could have had the broken one fixed and kept the new one for untrue malfunctions. I would go throw a fit and demand they reimburse me. It would have been around $300 to replace one door lock, that's the quote my dealership have me
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  #34  
By asdflkijd on 05-29-2012, 03:31 PM
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You would think after all these cars having proble
With the actuator, there would be a recall. Especially when BMW even changed the design of the door lock actuator. Such a POS
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  #35  
By combatcarry on 06-05-2012, 08:27 PM
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Nice DIY

Thanks to everyone involved with this thread and the linked thread over on Bimmer forum this is really pretty easy.

I would recommend leaving the window down one inch from the top the entire time. If you do this and unscrew/remove the nuts shown the actuator slips right out. Don't do anything with the lock on the outside of the door a don't bother messing wih the bolt under the plug on the end of the door.

Thanks again!!!!! Anyone with a little patience and mechanical ability can do this.
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  #36  
By kisho on 06-07-2012, 04:51 PM
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I'm having trouble removing the passenger door panel. It seems to be stuck on something around the speaker. I've already got the rest of the panel loose. Anyone have some ideas as to what I'm doing wrong?
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  #37  
By txusa03 on 06-08-2012, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kisho View Post
I'm having trouble removing the passenger door panel. It seems to be stuck on something around the speaker. I've already got the rest of the panel loose. Anyone have some ideas as to what I'm doing wrong?
On the passenger side, there are screw inside the door handle. You need to remove the door handle trim to get access to the screws.

This should help:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...4&postcount=40
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  #38  
By kisho on 06-08-2012, 01:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txusa03 View Post
On the passenger side, there are screw inside the door handle. You need to remove the door handle trim to get access to the screws.

This should help:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...4&postcount=40
Thanks for the link, makes sense why I couldn't get the door panel off.
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  #39  
By 06330iBeamer on 06-10-2012, 01:16 PM
just did this yesterday, was a lot easier than i thought, only really read a few of the steps, the rest was really just unscrew and pop out, simple un-install and re-install if you ask me, did it on the 06 330i thanks though for this DIY so I the know how to get started!
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  #40  
By jmlekofl on 07-13-2012, 10:23 PM
Tracerit, thanks for taking the time to take pics and put this together, followed inst and worked perfectly! You are an asset to this forum!!!
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  #41  
By Cage26 on 07-17-2012, 12:19 PM
Just knocked this out on my passanger side door.. this help me get started.. thanks
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  #42  
By hardworkin on 07-19-2012, 10:38 AM
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I just got finished replacing the drivers side actuator. If it wouldn't have been for this write up, it would have been a heck of a lot harder to do. I just want to say 'Thanks' to the OP and everyone elses additional posts. The vehicle was a '06 325XI (E90)
I bought the part on an internet order from Tomkinson BMW Parts.com. They substituted the part with the newest part (p/n 51-21-7-318-421 207D). The part cost me $57.98 with $11.95 shipping.
The part that I found the most frustrating was also the plastic window clips. Mainly because I was concerned that I might break the glass prying against it trying to get the clips out of the windows holes. Never-the-less, I was able to get it apart and reassembled with virtually no problems.
Thanks again for posting this info.
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  #43  
By Eternal on 07-29-2012, 01:05 PM
Thanks for the write up, I need to do this.
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