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How to Replace Clock Spring 97-06 BMW 325Xi

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  1. step : Removing the Clock Spring (0:22)
    • Disconnect the negative battery cable by loosening the 10 mm nut
    • Turn the steering wheel to the side
    • Remove the two T25 screws from the rear of the steering wheel
    • Return the steering wheel to center
    • Remove the airbag unit
    • Disconnect the two electrical connectors at the top of the steering wheel
    • Remove the 16 mm steering wheel bolt
    • Pull the steering wheel forward to remove it
    • Remove the three Phillips screws, the twist lock fastener, and push pin retainer to remove the kick panel
    • Disconnect the kick panel speaker electrical connector
    • Disconnect the OBD2 electrical connector
    • Disconnect the floor light electrical connector
    • Remove the two push pin retainers from the lower steering column cover to remove it
    • Remove the Phillips screw from the upper steering column cover to loosen it
    • Remove the four T25 screws to remove the clockspring and switch assembly
    • Disconnect the three electrical connectors from the clockspring switch assembly
    • Push the locking tabs to remove the windshield wiper switch from the assembly
    • Remove the turn signal switch in the same manner
  2. step : Installing the Clock Spring (8:26)
    • Push the turn signal switch into place
    • Push the windshield wiper switch into place
    • Connect the three clockspring switch assembly electrical connectors
    • Set the clockspring switch assembly on the steering column
    • Install the four T25 screws
    • Position the upper steering column cover and install the screw retainer
    • Position the lower steering column cover and install the two push pin retainers
    • Position the kick panel and connect the speaker electrical connector, floor light electrical connector and OBD2 electrical connector
    • Install the push pin retainer, twist lock retainer, and three Phillips screws to secure the kick panel
    • Install the steering wheel, making sure to align the indexing marks
    • Install the 16 mm steering wheel bolt and then torque it to 45 ft-lb while holding the steering wheel
    • Connect the media switch and airbag electrical connectors and set the airbag in position
    • Turn the steering wheel to install the two rear T25 screws
    • Reconnect the negative battery cable and tighten the 10 mm nut

What's up guys? I'm Andy from 1A Auto. In this video I'm going to show you how to replace the clock spring on this 2001 BMW 325Xi. If you need parts for your vehicle, click the link in the description and head over to

With the trunk open over on the right side or the passenger side, there should be a cover that goes right here. This vehicle doesn't have one, but you're going to want to remove that cover. The battery is located right here. First thing I'm going to do is take a 10 millimeter socket and a ratchet, loosen up this nut for the negative terminal. That's loose. Slide off the cable, slide it out of the way.

So you want to make sure you disconnect the battery before you take the airbag off because you don't want the airbag system. I'm seeing that the airbag's out, you'll get an airbag light. So what we're going to do is after disconnecting the battery, just put the key in the ignition, turn the wheel to the side like this. Disconnect the key. Then I'm going to take a torx driver. Now this is actually really difficult.

There's two holes. There's one hole on the bottom, one hole on the top. Now you need the driver because you need the length. Otherwise, a socket's probably not going to fit back there. But then this driver actually has a hole right here. So what you can do is to get some leverage, you can put another pocket screwdriver or something in the hole and then break this screw free. Generally it's very difficult to at least get that screw broken free. And we can do the same on this side.

If you don't have enough room here, what you can do is you can telescope the wheel out, bring it down, see if you have more room. We have more room. Let me try to break this free this way. And that's really on that pretty good. So loosen that up. And that's loose. Just take the key, turn the wheel back to straight. Take the key out. I can just grab this airbag. You can disconnect it over here. The connector right here. This connector right there. And then disconnect this connector. This goes to the switches.

When you have the airbag out of the vehicle and you want to place it down, make sure you always place it with the bag part facing up. You don't want it to explode this way if it exploded by accident. Now I'm going to take a 16 millimeter socket and a ratchet and I'm going to hold the steering wheel while I do this. Loosen up the nut. I mean, the bolt. You can use a longer ratchet or a breaker bar to loosen this.

All right, there we go. Once it breaks free, it's easy. So be careful. Yeah, you probably don't want to have the ratchet going this way towards the windshield because it'll loosen up on you quick. Loosen up on this. Once it's almost loose, right, take that out. What I like to do is just put this on a couple threads and then just grab the steering wheel. Loosen that up.

Sometimes if the steering wheel's stuck, you're going to need a puller. But this one's not too bad. Take that out. Take the steering wheel out. Now it is marked where the steering wheel will go. It's keyed. But be careful when you go to put it back on. Just take it, put it on the same way you took it off.

This has a retainer for the clock spring that when you put the steering wheel on, this pushes down on this and then the clock spring can spin. So as long as you have the steering wheel straight when you take it off, this clock spring's not going to spin. Normally I'd just tape it up so that it won't spin. Because if you spin the clock spring, you're going to break it.

I am going to pull this lower cover off just to gain more access to this cover. It's just going to give me more room. So I'll just take a Phillips head screwdriver. I'll take these screws out here. And there's two more over here. Take that down. There is a retainer right here. You just twist it. Loosen this up. So that just twists to the side like that and then you can pull it out. And then there's a pushpin right here. You can use a pocket screwdriver or you can use a trim tool. Pull the center part of the pushpin out first, just like that. You can pull the pushpin out.

Just grab this panel. Slide it down. Disconnect the speaker right here. There's two other things over here, got the OBD2 port. Just slide this lock back like this. Then from the other side. Open up the connector and then you can push the center straight up, just like that. And then the floor light, and disconnect the connector right there. Just slide it out. There's two pushpins, one right here, one right here. Just take a pocket screwdriver and right in the center I'm just going to push it up, just a little bit to release it. You might be able to work it out. You might have to get a couple screwdrivers. Pull that down just like that.

Do the same with the other one. Actually just pull down on this and then it's just going to sit in there. On this top cover there is a Phillips head screw right there, so use the Phillips head screwdriver. Just take it off.

All right. Remove that screw. There's some fabric that's holding that on. So rather than take that off completely, I'm just going to leave that like that. I have four screws I need to take out right here, here, here, and here. I'm going to use a T25 driver. You could use a socket and a ratchet if you wanted to. Take these out. Take those out. We can just grab this whole assembly, slide it right out.

There's three connectors I need to disconnect. One right here. Disconnect that. And down here. Just squeeze the locks. And then this one right here, squeeze the locks, slide it up. You squeeze on both sides of the connector. There's a lock on both sides. And they slide out. On the back side here there's two locks, one here and one here. Just grab it with your fingers and just slide it out. Then for the turn signal, the same thing. There's two little tabs. Slide it, slide it right out.

Now, take the turn signal switch, flip the clock spring over, line these tabs up, line the holes up, and then just lock it in place. Now I'm going to take the white press switch. Just slide this in through the back, line the holes up, and then just lock it in place.

All right, now we're going to take these switches and clock springs. We're going to connect the connector. Connect that one right there. The screen one goes underneath. Line that up, lock it in place, and then this black one goes over here. There, just like that. And slide this in position. Make sure the holes are lined up. We'll take the screws. I'm going to use a T25 driver, get these started. I'll get them all started first and then snug them down. Those are all in. So I'll just snug these down. Not too tight. It is plastic.

Now for this top piece, what I thought was just a screw is actually a pushpin. So I had to pull the lower part of the pushpin out and then take the screw part. Screw that in. Line that up. Then I'll just take a regular screwdriver and screw that in. Or you can try to push it in. Yup. I'm just going to use a screwdriver. Just take a Phillips head screwdriver. Helps if you have a shorter screwdriver, makes it easier, and just snug that up a little bit. You don't even have to make it tight. It's just got to go all the way down.

Now we'll take the lower steering wheel cover. I'm just going to telescope this down with the telescoping handle, and line this up. These little pins, you want those to line up. Make sure that stuff lines up there. Lock that in. Same on this side, just like that.

We'll take these two pushpins. Now when we push these in, before the centerpiece went all the way through, so what you can do is either push it back, oops, push it back like that, or you can slide it all the way out and then push back into this position. We can slide this in like that and then just push the center so that it's flush, just like that. We'll do the same with this one.

Right. Now I'm going to take the kick panel. I'm going to connect these, the wiring for this. Hook up the speaker. So move this here. The red one goes to the speaker. Lock that in place. This one goes to the light. It's going to be kind of hard to see, but you kind of have to just feel for the backside of the light. Just line it up. If it doesn't go on the right the first time, you can flip the connector around. Yup. Here we go. So the connector on this side, this little tab has to go like that to the inside of the car, at least on this car. Lock that in place.

Then with the OBD2 connector, just slide this in position, and then use the lock. Well you click it down first and then lock it in place. Slide this back into position. Use some clips up here, right there and right there. Just close this door, the OBD2 port. Take the Phillips head screws and a Phillips head screwdriver. Get this one started, get this one started, and then that one right there.

We have a pushpin that's going to go right here. Put that pushpin in. Make sure that's lined up and push it in. Then we'll take this retainer. This actually fell out while we had the kick panel out. Slide this in position and then you just twist it 90 degrees, just like that. It locks in place. Once all that stuff's all set and everything's lined up good, we'll just snug up these screws with a Phillips head screwdriver.

Take the steering wheel. Remember we want to align this lineup for the base of the column right there. You might have to wiggle this a little bit. So if you look at it right now, I could put the steering wheel on like that, but that's actually wrong. What I have to do is slide it up, just move it over one tooth, wiggle that. So make sure you set that right there.

We can take the bolt. Install the bolt. All right. With that all the way down, now I'm going to take a 16 millimeter socket, extension, and a torque wrench. I'm going to torque this to 45 foot-pounds. Remember, hold the steering wheel. You don't really want to use all the force on the steering lock to do this. You might need a helper to help hold the steering wheel while you do this. That's not too bad.

Now take the airbag. We want to connect these connectors. So it goes right here. Just line it up. It is sliding. And then the same with this one. I'm just going to go right there. Just line that up in position, just like that. I am going to take the key, just rotate the steering wheel. Take the T25 driver. You can wiggle the air bag to see if you got that started. And tighten that up pretty snug. That's good. Same at the top one.

If you have trouble getting this one in, you can twist the steering wheel back the other way. It's a little bit easier to tighten it from underneath here. And tighten that one snug. You're good. You're all set to hook the battery up.

We can take the negative side, connect the negative side. Take the same 10 millimeter socket and ratchet. Tighten it up. That's good. At this point, if you had that cover, you're going to want to put the cover back where it goes.

Thanks for watching. Visit for quality auto parts shipped to your door, the place for DIY auto repair. And if you enjoyed this video, please click the Subscribe button.

Tools needed for replacement:

    Ratchets & Related

  • Socket Extensions
  • Torque Wrench
  • Ratchet

  • Screwdrivers & Related

  • Phillips Head Screwdriver
  • Pocket Screwdriver

  • Sockets - Metric

  • 16mm Socket
  • 10mm Socket

  • Star Drivers & Sockets

  • T25 Driver

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