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DIY BMW 3 Series E46 Final Stage Resistor Replacement

So your BMW has no air coming from its vents and/or the air is erratic. The most common problem is a faulty Final Stage Resistor aka (blower motor resistor or blower motor regulator). I will walk you through the steps of how to replace the final stage resistor.

The tools you'll need: long Phillips screw driver, long T20 torx (strongly recommend a magnetized tip to make it much easier), flash light, needle nose pliers, flathead screw driver.

DIY BMW 3 Series E46 Final Stage Resistor Replacement
 Remove glove box by removing the 6 Phillips screws

Step 1: Remove glove box by removing the 6 Phillips screws.

Step 2: Remove the lower tray behind the glove box.


 Remove the stepper motor

Step 3: (some people like to remove the vent housing but it's not necessary. Working around the vent is better than fighting the installation of the vent) Remove the stepper motor by releasing the two T20 torx screws.


Pull the stepper motor assembly out slightly

Pull the stepper motor assembly out slightly and carefully remove the linkage with needle nose pliers by twisting the pliers between the linkage and the stepper motor (see next image). Unplug connector to stepper motor and move out of the way.


Pull the stepper motor assembly out slightly
Remove the two T20 torx screws from the final stage resistor

Step 4: Remove the two T20 torx screws from the final stage resistor (In some cases, the screws will be missing) Pry the black plastic clip back out of the way with a flathead screwdriver (see image) and pull out the resister. The resistor will sometimes fight you so try to wiggle and pull out the resistor simultaneously while prying back the black plastic clip.


Remove the two T20 torx screws from the final stage resistor

Step 5: unplug resistor and install new resistor in reverse order
No coding or programming needed, just plug and play!

  • Final stage resister
  • P/n 64116920365
  • List price from dealer $120.00
  • Works with E46, E53, E85 and E83

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May 2014
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