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timk

E39 M5 headlight adjusters - MOT failure

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So my 2002 M5 has just failed its MOT based on the headlight aim being too low and the garage has been unable to adjust it as the adjuster is just turning and not moving the aim up or down.

Apparently it is stuck in the down position.

I've order some cheap looking plastic adjusters on eBay, in the hope I might be able to do this myself, although doesn't look like they'll arrive before the MOT expires next week. 

My question is - there appear to be various DIY guides out there but is there a definitive 'how to' anyone can point me towards?? If mines a March 2002 build am i likely to have the epoxy bonded lights which can't be prised apart?

 

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This is the one I used: 

 

 

Remember as a UK car you have an additional panel on each headlight you can remove - the flat, round one on the top that gives you access to switch from RHD to LHD beam pattern. This helps enormously with one of the adjusters!

 

 

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Thanks for that. Looks incredibly fiddly. Is removing the headlight itself straightforward?

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1 hour ago, timk said:

Thanks for that. Looks incredibly fiddly. Is removing the headlight itself straightforward?

 

 

Yup, 4 bolts which you can see from the top, when you open the bonnet.

 

Are yours OEM xenons or halogen headlights? My headlights were duff on my 530i touring (oem xenons) but being someone who has no patience for fiddly jobs, I bought 2 new halogen headlights from ECP and retrofitted the xenons (ballasts, D2S bulbs, D2S to H7 adapters etc). You can’t tell the difference between them and oem xenons IMO and it’s a straight foreword swap out 

 

Just thought I’d offer the info in case you decide it’s too much of a faff as I did :lol: 

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On 12/04/2019 at 18:57, d_a_n1979 said:

 

 

Yup, 4 bolts which you can see from the top, when you open the bonnet.

 

Are yours OEM xenons or halogen headlights? My headlights were duff on my 530i touring (oem xenons) but being someone who has no patience for fiddly jobs, I bought 2 new halogen headlights from ECP and retrofitted the xenons (ballasts, D2S bulbs, D2S to H7 adapters etc). You can’t tell the difference between them and oem xenons IMO and it’s a straight foreword swap out 

 

Just thought I’d offer the info in case you decide it’s too much of a faff as I did :lol: 

 

They're OEM xenons. I think all the M5s had them. 

Punching my reg into ECP brings up Hella xenon units at £844 a pop (!) - how much did the halogen units cost and were they Hella?

 

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12 minutes ago, timk said:

 

They're OEM xenons. I think all the M5s had them. 

Punching my reg into ECP brings up Hella xenon units at £844 a pop (!) - how much did the halogen units cost and were they Hella?

 

 

Yeah; as were mine :lol: Nearly swallowed my tongue when I saw the prices!

 

I reverted back to OEM Hella Halogen headlights and retrofitted the xenon parts; I got them from ECP; about £520 for both IIRC and then used D2s to H7 adapters to fit the D2S xenon bulbs into the dipped beam, the rest is the same; you can attach the brackets to hold the ballast to the back of the headlights as your OEM Xenons have also. I didn't do this as the screws were rusted to hell and snapped as I tried to undo them, so my ballasts are velcro'd in place, there's plenty of room behind heach headlight to do this (you'll see when you remove them)

 

The headlights are perfect too; they've flown through an MOT, all the motors work as they should; they just needed a tweak to align them correctly

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I've managed to wrestle headlight from car after dealing with rusted bolts and dropping socket attachments down into the depths of the engine bay :oops:

Does anyone know the eBay bloke who offers a repair service for these?? (it's a 2002 car with headlights that can't be prised open/ baked).

I've not got the patience or dexterity to fiddle about with this and need the car back on the road so looking for a man that can.

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10 hours ago, timk said:

I've managed to wrestle headlight from car after dealing with rusted bolts and dropping socket attachments down into the depths of the engine bay :oops:

Does anyone know the eBay bloke who offers a repair service for these?? (it's a 2002 car with headlights that can't be prised open/ baked).

I've not got the patience or dexterity to fiddle about with this and need the car back on the road so looking for a man that can.

 

‘Search for ‘best for fresh lights’

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6 minutes ago, timk said:

 

Thanks for that. I’ve previously contacted that guy and he’s stopped communicating, so not sure he wants the work. Back to the drawing board.

 

Ah, no worries...

 

FYI; OEM Hella Halogen headlights would be £550 via ECP with their 'Spring55' discount code

 

Not sure if you want to spend that; but as I said earlier, I did as it gives you brand new, fully functional headlights, with warranty and they're simply plug n play (you just need the H7/D2S adapters and get them set up at your MOT station to get the beams in the right direction etc) :) 

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Time to get cutting if you can't bake them off. I hummed and hawed about whether to do this when the headlight adjusters crumbled away and several years later everything is fine. Much cheaper than buying a new headlamp! Cutting an access hole makes the replacement of the plastic adjuster much simpler than trying to do it with forceps alone. The cover patch I put on is more or less invisible, too. It's not a difficult procedure.

 

Here's my approach:-

 

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Shame they aren't the bake openable lights - I would have been happy doing this for you.
I actually have a spare set of adjusters too!

Sent from my BBF100-1 using Tapatalk

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22 hours ago, AlexGSi2000 said:

Shame they aren't the bake openable lights - I would have been happy doing this for you.
I actually have a spare set of adjusters too!

Sent from my BBF100-1 using Tapatalk
 

 

Thanks anyway - I think I would have given it a go if they'd been the openable ones. 

 

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Like DH, I cut an 'access hole' in the top of the units with a hobby tool, and glued the piece I removed back in when done. With the headlights are in-situ, you can't see the cuts.

Note that the hobby tool melts the plastic, so the piece you remove ends up smaller than the hole it came from. I just filled in the gap with successive applications of glue.

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