Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Removing the airbag and changing the dash bulbs - A BillR Archive

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010

    Default Removing the airbag and changing the dash bulbs - A BillR Archive

    Removing the airbag and changing the dash bulbs

    1. First you disconnect the negative battery cable. This is critical. Make sure you have the code for the radio before doing this.
    Its very important that you disconnect the battery before doing anything else, if you don't you will trip the airbag code when you turn the key to remove the
    steering wheel... I have had many many emails from people who didn't do this and now want to know how to turn the airbag light on the dash off...

    Name:  dash cluster1a.jpg
Views: 331
Size:  51.5 KBName:  dashcluster2a copy.jpg
Views: 224
Size:  50.7 KB

    2. Wait a few minutes for the airbag to discharge, then remove the 2 philips screws that hold the steering column
    cover on the bottom.

    Name:  dashcluster3a copy.jpg
Views: 212
Size:  34.0 KB

    Make sure you disconnected the batteryThen you remove the bottom cover on the steering column. When thats removed you will see a orange connector.
    Thats the airbag connector. Squeeze the clip ends and seperate the connector. Remove the end that goes to the steering
    wheel from the post its fastened to.

    Name:  dashcluster4a copy.jpg
Views: 235
Size:  42.1 KB

    Using a T27 torx socket or driver then remove the 2 screws on the back of the steering wheel that hold the airbag in place.

    Name:  dashcluster5a copy.jpg
Views: 247
Size:  40.4 KB

    Next you carefully lift the airbag assy off of the wheel and disconnect the plug on the back. It comes straight out to remove. Then set the airbag aside in a place where it won't get disturbed or damaged.

    Name:  dashcluster6a copy.jpg
Views: 499
Size:  56.7 KB

    Then you remove the 22mm self-locking nut that holds the steering wheel on. This nut is to be replaced as it's only intended to be used
    once. The torque when reinstalling is 59 ft.lbs. Once that nut is removed, mark the steering shaft and the wheel with a marker. A line across both so you can put the wheel back on in the same place. Put the key in the ignition next and turn to the run position. The wheel will then lift off.

    Name:  dashcluster7a copy.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  52.1 KB

    Once the wheel is out of the way you remove the 2 philips screw that are in the top of the instrument cluster and carefully pull the
    cluster out far enough to remove the wiring connectors on the back. There are little levers you raise to release the connectors.

    Name:  dashcluster8 copy.jpg
Views: 204
Size:  52.3 KB

    Name:  dashcluster9 copy.jpg
Views: 217
Size:  53.8 KB

    Next lay the instrument cluster down on a towel or mat to protect the face and on the back is most of the bulbs. To get
    to the 3 that provide the main illumination at night you have to turn the 2 latches counterclockwise 1/4 turn and swing the back
    panel up. The rest of the bulbs are on the back panel.

    This car was a 1990 525i, it had:
    6 - 1.5 watt bulbs
    3- 3 watt bulbs
    13- 1.2 watt bulbs

    The 1.5 watt bulbs I had to get from Bmw, all the rest were available through aftermarket sources. The 1.5s provide the lighting
    for the gear indicator on an automatic,the check instrument display, the service indicator and the odometer. These are the ones that are on most of the time.

    The 1.2s I wasn't as concerned about changing since they aren't on nearly as much. These are all the warning lights, turn signals, bright indicator etc.

    The 3 watts I changed since they are the gauge lighting at night.

    Name:  dashcluster10a copy.jpg
Views: 218
Size:  89.1 KB
    Name:  dashcluster11 copy.jpg
Views: 205
Size:  90.2 KB

    I think that about covers it all. Then put it back together in the reverse. Make sure you don't hook up the battery until the very last. Turn the key off after the steering wheel is installed, then reconnect the battery.
    Otherwise it will trigger an srs code and have to be reset. One other note, On most of the other e34 models the battery is under the rear seat. To gain access just pull up really hard on the front bottom of the seat. While your in there you can look at the bottom of the steering wheel where the copper paste is and spread it around if you have a squeaking problem. A few other notes as well. Some models will
    have a nut holding the steering wheel on , some will have a bolt instead. You don't abolutely have to replace the bolt or nut, you can just use loctite on it if needed. Also some airbags will take a t27 torx, some will take a t29 torx.
    Last edited by bimmer nut; 12-23-2013 at 12:35 PM.

    A Bimmer Nut for sure: '04 530im, '99 Z3, '06 330cicm zhp, '69 r60, Owner/Operator of and

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Eastern Tennessee USi


    This should be a sticky in the archives.
    95 E34 530I V2.37
    Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.

    John F. Kennedy

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010


    Have I told you vBSEO sucks. They went out of business, and the software broke, not I have to fix all the images again! vBSEO changed URLs on the fly to make them SEO friendly. Don't use it! Once you use any like it, it can never be removed without breaking all the links in your site.

    A Bimmer Nut for sure: '04 530im, '99 Z3, '06 330cicm zhp, '69 r60, Owner/Operator of and

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010


    The first post in this thread was missing all it's images, I fixed it now. What a pita.

    A Bimmer Nut for sure: '04 530im, '99 Z3, '06 330cicm zhp, '69 r60, Owner/Operator of and

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 19
    Last Post: 03-17-2014, 07:54 AM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 05-23-2008, 10:53 PM
  3. SRS Airbag Dash Panel ***Need Help to Replace***
    By jbsails in forum 5 Series BMW
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 05-19-2008, 07:00 PM
  4. Help ***Need Dash SRS Airbag Cover***E34
    By jbsails in forum 5 Series BMW
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-17-2008, 04:30 PM
  5. OT: BillR LED light bulbs?
    By Tiger in forum 5 Series BMW
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-01-2007, 12:47 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts