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E46 Coupe boot lid button

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Hey guys,

The boot opens with the key and the fob, however, when I press the rubber boot button in the handle nothing happens. I removed the trunk carpet and inspected the wires and couldn't see anything obvious, I then used a voltmeter and could confirm continuity of two of the pins, which I believe is normal, however, the third was incomplete even after I pressed the boot button.

I have ordered a replacement microswitch from Cotswold, however, looking at the handle, I can't see any easy way of separating the two pieces, or if in fact, it is meant to be separated:



However, this image suggests when you buy it new, it is separate:



And this is what makes me think that it is splittable:

Also, the BMW parts guy who I ordered the microswitch from has told me that it is able to be split, hence why the part is available separately.

Anyone spit their handle? Any DIY?

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Before you go buying anything..... these symptoms sound like an age old problem, and happened to mine. When you open the boot wiggle the trunked cable coming from the car in to the top right corner and into the bootlid itself (looking at it) - this constant opening and closing of the boot causes the cables to fray over time. If this does cure it then you'll have to prise the trunking cover back and repair any frayed wires you see there to stop it happening again.

Edited by Rich (BoxClever)
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There are two common problems, one as Rich said and the other is that the actual microswitch fails. Happened on both my facelifted e46's. At the time I am sure I am remember reading that it cannot be split. I think I attempted to split it too with no luck. I might be wrong but I think it's the prefacelift handle that can be split.



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Handle was filthy, I wonder if the elements are what eventually made it fail:


Appears the lens gaskets have failed as well:

Cracked the corners whilst trying to get it out, d'oh:


Not too bad:


All done:



The quality does seem poorer:


My advice, don't just replace the microswitch. I'll let the photos do the talking:










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It was indeed a coupe, I wouldn't go the microswitch route, far too much hassle. I bought the entire handle that comes as a new unit for around £85ish. The handle is primed, however, I kept that as a spare and used the trim from the old one. But for reference, the microswitch was around half that. I did have to wait around 4 weeks for the part though.

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I know this is an old thread but you guys seem to have some knowledge regarding soft top issues.

My Soft top has no power in the open/close switch? so when i press to open there is no red light at all, i have checked fuses and dropped the boot compartment, all seems good. Can anyone tell me what else to check pls?


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