BMW Coupes and Sedans 1970-1988 Repair Guide

Headlights

Print

AIMING



Headlights should be precision aimed using special equipment; however, as a temporary measure, you might wish to re-aim your lights to an approximately correct position.

Most of the BMW models covered by this guide employ large, knurled knobs, located behind the headlights, for aiming purposes. The horizontal adjustment is located on the right (driver's) side of the light, and the vertical adjustment above the light. Screw the vertical adjustment inward (clockwise) to lower the beam; screw the horizontal adjustment in (clockwise) to turn the beam to left, and vice versa.

The lights may be aimed against a wall. High beams should point just slightly below straight ahead and horizontal. Low beams should point somewhat downward, with the left side beam pointing slightly to the right.

REPLACEMENT



1600, 2000 and 2002 Models
  1. Remove the 4 Phillips head screws from the front of the radiator grille.
  2.  
  3. Open the hood. Remove the weather-proof cover, if so equipped. Unscrew the knurled nut which retains the outside edge of the grille to the front panel. Lift off the grille.
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the electrical connector from the back of the sealed beam.
  6.  
  7. Remove the 3 screws which retain the headlight outer ring to the headlight, taking care not to drop the sealed beam.
  8.  
  9. Lift out the headlight.
  10.  

To install:
  1. Reverse the above procedure to install. Have the headlights adjusted at a garage with the proper equipment. If this is not possible, park the car on a level surface about 25 feet (0.6m) from a light colored wall. With the tires properly inflated and a friend sitting in the from seat, adjust the beams to the proper height using the black knurled knobs located inside the fender well. The upper knob controls the vertical setting and the knob at the side controls the horizontal setting.
  2.  

2500, 2800, Bavaria, 3000 and 3.0 Models
  1. Open the hood and pull the cover off the rear of the headlight. Detach the electrical connector.
  2.  
  3. The bulb is retained by a spring clip-turn the clip back and pull the bulb out to the rear.
  4.  
  5. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Make sure to properly align the reflector.
  6.  

1975-86 3, 5, 6 and 7 Series Models Except 320i

See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6

  1. Open the hood and pull the cover off the rear of the headlight. Detach the electrical connector.
  2.  
  3. The bulb is retained by a spring clip. Turn the clip back and pull the bulb out to the rear.
  4.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: If equipped with a cover over the headlight in the engine compartment, remove the retaining clips



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Remove the cover from the engine compartment



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: With the cover removed, the headlights and adjustment knobs are visible



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 4: Unscrew the three retainer screws which secure the collar around the light



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 5: Lift the collar and headlight out ...



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 6: ... and unplug the headlight

  1. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Make sure to properly align the reflector.
  2.  

320i Models
  1. First, remove the top and bottom screws from the parking light. Pull the parking light lens off. Then, open the hood, disconnect the electrical connector for the parking light, and pull the rubber grommet out of the engine compartment wall. Now pull the entire parking light assembly out of the grille.
  2.  
  3. Remove the attaching screws and remove the grille.
  4.  
  5. Loosen the 3 screws on the trim ring (don't let the headlight fall) and then pull the lamp out. Disconnect the connector and remove the lamp.
  6.  

To install:
  1. Install the new lamp in reverse order, making sure the tab on the rear of the lamp is aligned with the notch in the reflector so that the lamp cannot be turned once it is in position.
  2.  

All 1987-88 Models

See Figure 7

Almost all new models use halogen headlamps, these lamps provide brighter and longer lasting light. The bulbs for the headlight are separate from the reflector, where as conventional bulbs are part of the reflector. Most low beam bulbs are part number 9004, and most high beam bulbs are part number 9006. Use these number when purchasing new bulbs.

Halogen bulbs are very sensitive and must be handled carefully. They must not be touched with bare hands. Always use a clean, soft cloth to change the bulbs.

  1. Open the hood and disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cover from the rear of the headlight assembly.
  4.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 7: Turn the harness and bulb to remove

  1. Turn the headlight holder counterclockwise and remove the light assembly.
  2.  
  3. Replace the bulb. Install a new bulb, making sure not to handle it with your bare hands.
  4.  

 
label.common.footer.alt.autozoneLogo