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  1. #1
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    Member No: 17380 sconstantine is an unknown quantity at this point sconstantine's Avatar
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    Spoke to BMWNA about Peeling Door Pulls

    A BMW rep called me yesterday in response to my post about the X5's peeling door pulls. He asked why I didn't just have them replaced again. I told him that I didn't want to take the chance of having the LED's in the door handles damaged further, nor did I want to have any more door panel clips broken. Also told him it did not seem to make much sense to me to have them replaced if they are going to peel again. He agreed. He also agreed that this is a problem that they are very aware of, but no one seems to be doing anything about it. I told him that I imagined that BMW was spending a lot of $$$ on warranty claims for this, and it seemed logical to me that that money would be better spent re-designing the pulls, instead of periodically replacing them.

    I told him that I had ordered a running meter of Dakota leather from BMW, and that I was going to have them covered to solve the problem myself. He asked that I send him a picture of the completed "cover-up", which I intend to do. Kinda reminds me of my days as a 2002 owner in the 70's, when we had to constantly invent work-arounds for weird problems. Anyway, the guy was very friendly, just not very helpful in finding a solution to the problem. Its nice that they take the time to troll this board & contact us, I just wish that they had more authority do actually make something happen.


  2. #2
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    Member No: 21296 jerryyeh is an unknown quantity at this point jerryyeh's Avatar
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    Stanley, do you have picture of peeling door??

    I just couldn't figure out how does door handle peel.
    Thanks,
    Jerry

  3. #3
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    Of course, we will all want to see the pics too !!

    sounds inventive and could add to the look of the interior...pls post when done !

  4. #4
    (I am Jack's complete lack of surprise) Hatch
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    Bubbles & scratches in the paint

    Basically it boils down to BMW using a common part (a generic plastic door pull handle) that is used throughout their vehicles which allows them to order in larger quantities thus lowering the door handle unit costs.
    It also avoids the constant ordering and reordering of multiple colored handles (inventory management) because my guess is that they paint their handles in-line. Thus by having a generic handle in place they aren't exposed to a possible line shut down (big $$$) because a small "C" item like a door handle is not in stock.
    So it's easy to see how this whole idea was sold from upper management in the first place. And it's a great idea in theory, that is when there isn't a quality issue.
    The problem is that the paint used on the handles has to contain latex and cannot be oil based--much like a concrete paint. Due to the fact that the handles are painted inline the paint has to dry fast as well so my guess is that's where the formation of bubbles (another problem) in the handles are coming from.
    Also, the paint has to be very thin so any kind of contact with jewellery will cause a noticeable scratch to the surface.
    The use of material to cover the handle is an idea that was brought up on this forum before and I think it's a great idea. It is probably the only way this problem can be resolved.
    There is no doubt in my mind that BMWNA is fully aware of the problem. My guess is that they have measured the extent of a recall and the resulting cash that is needed to perform such a service and found it too daunting a task for something that is afterall only of a cosmetic concern.
    So, best to find out what others are doing to correct this problem and perform it yourself. I can't ever see BMW paying good money to fix this problem which they have managed to compound by not only mass producing it, but by extending the problem even more thorughout the BMW line. Clearly this is a result of "Purchasing" taking over and not including Engineering in on the discussions. Rest assured, some people were probably fired or lost the BMW contract as result of this catastrophic failure.



  5. #5
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    Thanks, Hatch!!


  6. #6
    540 PETE
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    Re: Spoke to BMWNA about Peeling Door Pulls

    How much was the leather and do you have the part number?

  7. #7
    TTBear
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    I'd love to know, too, please! Same problem here.


  8. #8
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    Here's who you should get in touch with +

    Contact Andy or Jon Maddux from
    <a href="http://www.leatherz.com">LeatherZ</a> who will probably be willing to take on the task of <i>expertly</i> recovering the handles in factory leather. Check their site and click on the "Individual" link to see the e46 interior they did some minor work on. I've met them both at the Z3 Homecoming this year (HC02) and can vouch for thier work. Personally I'd get them trimmed in Alcantara b/c it has a unique tactile feel. If I were keeping my X, I'd even get the door bins trimmed properly like my e39 was.<br><HR " COLOR="#FF0000" SIZE="4"> <IMG SRC="http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid24/p3c23adcd6d62a05e4685e62f5f690eec/fd92e5f4.gif">
    <b><FONT COLOR=808080 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">Alpina22</FONT> </b>
    <b><FONT COLOR=8B0000 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">00</FONT></b><b><FONT COLOR=808080 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">=</FONT></b><b><FONT COLOR=8B0000 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">oo</FONT></b><b><FONT COLOR=808080 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">=</FONT></b><b><FONT COLOR=8B0000 FONT FACE="comic_sans_ms" FONTSIZE="3">00</FONT></b>

  9. #9
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    But it's strange

    That the X5 is the only BMW with this design. They make many more 3-series cars, and those handles aren't painted and don't peel.

  10. #10
    Hatch
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    I have heard this from other owners as well

    Don't quote me on this but I believe this problem was also present on the older 5 series

  11. #11
    Hatch
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    Yep bins 4 sure


  12. #12
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    Talked to Jon last year about this - nothing yet


  13. #13
    MJ
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    Re: Spoke to BMWNA about Peeling Door Pulls

    I call them the scratch-off lottery ticket handles.

    MJ
    '00 X5 had 3 sets of handles!
    '03 X5 so far, so good

  14. #14
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    It seems I have the same problem, I was online today to see if I can replace the handles. I came across this thread. I'm surprised it wasn't recalled! any advice?
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  15. #15
    Robert Platt Bell
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    Actually, a lot of interior parts are painted.

    Quote Originally Posted by georgemaris View Post
    It seems I have the same problem, I was online today to see if I can replace the handles. I came across this thread. I'm surprised it wasn't recalled! any advice?
    A lot of the "plastic" inside a BMW is actually painted, such as the insert around the horn button on your steering wheel.

    Why do they do this? Paint shiny black plastic with a coat of flat black paint? Well, it makes the wheel look better and have a better texture.

    The same is true for the door pulls. Mine are silver and underneath the "Scratch off lottery ticket" surface is, well shiny silver plastic.

    Some cleaning agents (like alcohol wipes) and preservatives (armor-all) tend to soften this paint, making it easy to scratch off. I stopped using armor-all on my BMWs as it seems to cause more harm than good to the plastic surfaces, which are often painted. And the dash on a BMW isn't supposed to be shiny, anyway.

    I was in the bad habit of using alcohol wipes (hand cleaners) to tidy up the steering wheel (get the dust off) when, to my horror, one day all the paint started coming off in strips.

    Rather than panic, I just kept rubbing until ALL THE PAINT came off. Eventually, the shiny plastic underneath revealed itself. Not as nice as the flat black paint, but hey, it won't peel any more.

    I did the same thing on the passenger side grab handle - just wiped the rest of the paint off, revealing the smooth grey plastic underneath. One problem with the painted surface is that it shows dirt and sweat and as a result, stains over time.

    The painted surfaces look better, when new, and give a BMW that quality look and feel. But they wear over time.

    If you don't want to remove the paint, you can just remove the door panel, remove the handle and paint it yourself (in the color and finish of your choice) and re-install it.

    Someone complained about "breaking door panel clips" - this is bull****. Yes, they break - in any car. But they are very cheap (pennies apiece). You should buy about 10 of these from any of the online suppliers and keep them in a tin or ziplock bag in your glove box.

    You will take these door panels off, several times, over the life of the car, to replace window regulator clips (buy several of those as spares, too) as well as door handles, which fail over time.

    At this stage in the design life of the car, the resale value is trivial, and spending a ton of money to fix these cars (or, expecting BMW to pay) is idiotic. However, with a little work and ingenuity, these cars can look good and be serviceable for years and years.

    As for those who whine about the "quality" of BMWs, bear in mind that ANY CAR has its share of problems, even Hondas. I came across a site the other day that mentioned certain year Accords that have transmissions that fail at 60,000 miles and coolant necks on the engine block that snap off, necessitating replacement of the engine.

    All cars have their pros and cons, their strengths and weaknesses. None are perfect, and paying more for a car does not make a car more reliable. In fact, usually the opposite. So let's all grow up and stop whining about how we "deserve" free repairs on 10-year-old cars, OK?

    Just get out a wrench and fix it. If you can't, then likely you should not own an older BMW.

    And if you are angry at BMW, chances are the real issue is that you bought a car that your income bracket really couldn't support.

    Seriously, these are expensive cars, and paying $70,000 for a car, if you are making even $250,000 a year, really makes no sense.

    And I think that is the real source of anger for most of these people - they are not funding their retirement plans and are upset that their expensive toy is broken.

    Sell it to someone like me who is handy with tools, and buy a Honda. But not one that breaks coolant necks.

    Good Luck!
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  16. #16
    Robert Platt Bell
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    Scotch film

    In this morning's mail, a note from ECS tuning, one of the board sponsors, about a scotch film that can be used for interior trim pieces:

    http://www.ecstuning.com/News/3M_Sco...1080_Film_Wrap

    Available in a number of colors, including silver. Worth a shot, I guess.
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