How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

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Joined: Wed 10 Apr, 2013 10:40
Posts: 90

  Z3 roadster 2.8

How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

Post by Fozzfox72 » Thu 09 May, 2013 22:11

Due to age, materials used and corrosion door/wing mirrors are increasingly hard to come by. So the aftermarket parts are the safer albeit more expensive option.

So how exactly should the new unit be fitted?

Can the paint be sprayed direct to the plastic housing?

Does it need a primer?

How long does it take to dry and how many coats?

What are the 2 wires inside the housing?

And why are there no instructions?

If you can help please do!

Thanks in advance

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Joined: Fri 17 Feb, 2012 20:18
Posts: 2224

  Z3 roadster 1.9

Re: How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

Post by BladeRunner919 » Fri 10 May, 2013 08:02

Do you mean aftermarket (not a BMW mirror) or oem (new replacement from BMW)?

Plastic needs a plastic primer before spraying. As for how long it takes to dry, that depends on the ambient conditions and what sort of paint it is. How many coats depends on what colour, whether you need a clear coat etc.

Wires are for the motor.

What sort of instructions were you expecting it to come with?!!!

Joined: Mon 31 May, 2010 09:16
Posts: 60

  Z3 roadster 2.2i
Location: Zoetermeer

Re: How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

Post by HBmw3 » Fri 10 May, 2013 13:31

If you mean two black wires, not the four wires going to the motor, they are to heat the mirrorglass.
You need the right glass with two metal pins at the backside on which the two wires are connected to.

Joined: Wed 10 Apr, 2013 10:40
Posts: 90

  Z3 roadster 2.8

Re: How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

Post by Fozzfox72 » Sat 11 May, 2013 17:32

Thanks guys for your valid input and guidance, this forum is so very handy for a novice like me and I'm very grateful.

Sussed out the two black wires , simple and as suggested they slot straight into the mirror (male female socket) which I'm guessing must heat mirror glass.

Black, white, blue and brown wires with tiny metal spade connectors (from car door) attach to the wire loom from new OEM housing unit. This is a little tricky as the new OEM part has a new connector, which kind of looks like a USB. However the older door wires don't have the opposite connector! So I have hunted around and no one has this connector. (Except I'm guessing BMW DEALER, but they are closed !!) so I'm going to strip them all back and solder them together (colour to colour)

Regarding the painting I have used the OEM paints, colour first and used light layers, and built up every half hour or so to give a deep rich colour. Looks nice now after 6 or so coats. I then have given 2 coats with the clear lacquer. May do a final one later this evening. Will leave to dry, although I think this will take some days to really cure.

Now regarding the door card, I searched on this forum and found some great "how to's" but as someone suggested on an earlier thread you really don't need to take the card off. I used a small coat hanger cut it into a length then bent the end over to form a hook then simply went fishing to find the internal wires. Soon enough I managed to hook them out and pull them through the door wing mirror holes! Only took 5 minutes or so and no undoing the cards!!

Tomorrow after the paint has dried I'm going to fit, and luckily I have the glass and 2 bolts to fix to door, as they DON'T COME WITH THE OEM SUPPLIED PART. YOU HAVE TO BUY SEPARATELY!

More to follow!

Joined: Wed 10 Apr, 2013 10:40
Posts: 90

  Z3 roadster 2.8

Re: How to correctly fit a wing mirror (complete housing)

Post by Fozzfox72 » Sun 12 May, 2013 18:59

So today I fitted the housing to the door, the fixed the other related issues.

It's not too tricky but I did have a couple of snags!

Stripped the wires back on both and soldered together, wrapped and fed back into door. Attached rubber door seal to housing then back to door. Cleaned and lightly oiled this area to, just a nip. Screws looked old and light surface rust. Now screw base to door firm but not too tight!

Took apart the housing with removal of 4 small Allen key style screws, this separates the unit into 3 parts. Front, back, and inside (alley arm, motor) lightly oiled spring inside, as when new it's very stiff!

Take your time to familiarise your self with the mirror attachments as we don't want to crack the glass, simple, again, just use a medium size flat head screw driver and twist them open!

I now screwed the housing back together, attach the 2 wires to mirror, flat connectors, then gently but firmly press the glass connectors until they "click" into place!

So all back into place, but then I tried the electrics and nothing happened!! Doh! So I then suddenly realised that the heater blower is also not working!? So I checked on here again for fuses and found that they too are on the same ring/circuit/fuse?
After locating the fuse (red 24) I pulled it out and yep it's busted! So quick change and like magic all now work, blower, both door mirrors and also the audible alarm warning for the lights!

Only down side is the colour is a little flat, so may need another go, but now I know. :lol:

I did take picture too so when I can work out how to upload I will.


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