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Front and Rear Wheel Well Liner Replacing
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Front and Rear Wheel Well Liner Replacing

Nick Czerula

Time:

1.5 hours

Tab:

$150

Talent:

***

Tools:

8, 10mm sockets, Plastic rivet tool, trim panel tool

Applicable Models:

X3 E83 (2004-06)
X3 E83 facelift (2007-10)

Parts Required:

Wheel well plastic rivets.

Hot Tip:

Tape body so you don't scratch it

Performance Gain:

Access to horns and rear lights

Complementary Modification:

Replace all plastic rivets

The wheel wells (inner fenders) on your BMW X3 are fitted with plastic liners. These liners help to keep water and debris from entering body panels, electrical components and the engine comportment. The wheel well liners also help to reduce road noise and offer another level or weight reduction by reducing the amount of metal used in the fenders and surrounding components.

The front wheel well liner protects the front fender from water and helps to dampen road noise. You will need to remove it to replace a front fender or horns. Wheel well liners are frequently damaged from impacts with parking blocks or curbs, sometimes leaving the liner hanging or dragging on the wheel. When replacing, I suggest having enough plastic expanding anchor screws for the liner you are removing, as they frequently do not survive removal. See the text below to determine how many you need, depending on what you are servicing. The rear liner may have to be removed to access the charcoal canister.

Remember your car may have been serviced before and parts replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve as they grow older. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

Raise and support the front or rear of your vehicle. See our tech article on jacking vehicle.

Front liner: The wheel well liner (red arrows) is one piece, wrapping around the inner fender and behind the strut.
Figure 1

Front liner: The wheel well liner (red arrows) is one piece, wrapping around the inner fender and behind the strut. It is removed as one piece.

Front liner: Starting at the front, remove the seven plastic rivets (red arrows).
Figure 2

Front liner: Starting at the front, remove the seven plastic rivets (red arrows). Press the center pin in using a pick (yellow arrow), then pull out using a trim panel tool (blue arrows). Far right blue arrow shows a broken rivet, this is common and they are not reusable.

Front liner: Working at the rear corner of the liner under the vehicle, remove the plastic rivet (red arrow) and the two 8mm fasteners (blue arrows).
Figure 3

Front liner: Working at the rear corner of the liner under the vehicle, remove the plastic rivet (red arrow) and the two 8mm fasteners (blue arrows).

Front liner: Working at the front corner of the liner under the vehicle, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 4

Front liner: Working at the front corner of the liner under the vehicle, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).

Front liner: Working at the front corner of the liner, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 5

Front liner: Working at the front corner of the liner, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).

Front liner: Then, working near the strut, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 6

Front liner: Then, working near the strut, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).

Front liner: Then, working at the rear of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).
Figure 7

Front liner: Then, working at the rear of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).

Front liner: Then, working at the front of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).
Figure 8

Front liner: Then, working at the front of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).

Front liner: Then, working at the top of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).
Figure 9

Front liner: Then, working at the top of the liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).

Front liner: Pull the wheel well arch trim (red arrow) off and allow it to hang out of way.
Figure 10

Front liner: Pull the wheel well arch trim (red arrow) off and allow it to hang out of way. Secure it with tape to prevent damage.

Front liner: Pull the front of the liner out of the fender (red arrow).
Figure 11

Front liner: Pull the front of the liner out of the fender (red arrow).

Front liner: Pull the rear of the liner out of the fender (red arrow).
Figure 12

Front liner: Pull the rear of the liner out of the fender (red arrow).

Front liner: Pull the liner down (red arrow) and pull it together to remove.
Figure 13

Front liner: Pull the liner down (red arrow) and pull it together to remove. Reverse steps to install. Replace any questionable fasteners and all the plastic rivets.

Rear liner: The rear wheel well liner (red arrow7) is one piece, wrapping around the inner fender.
Figure 14

Rear liner: The rear wheel well liner (red arrow7) is one piece, wrapping around the inner fender. It is removed as one piece.

Rear liner: Starting at the front, remove the six plastic rivets (red arrows).
Figure 15

Rear liner: Starting at the front, remove the six plastic rivets (red arrows). Press the center pin in using a pick (yellow arrow), then pull out using a trim panel tool (blue arrows). Far right blue arrow shows a broken rivet, this is common as they are not reusable.

Rear liner: Pull the wheel well arch trim (red arrow) off and remove it from the vehicle.
Figure 16

Rear liner: Pull the wheel well arch trim (red arrow) off and remove it from the vehicle.

Rear liner: Working at the rear corner of the liner, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 17

Rear liner: Working at the rear corner of the liner, remove the two 8mm fasteners (red arrows).

Rear liner: Then, working near the rear shock, remove the two 10mm plastic nuts (red arrows).
Figure 18

Rear liner: Then, working near the rear shock, remove the two 10mm plastic nuts (red arrows).

Rear liner: Then, working at the front of the liner, remove the 10mm plastic nut (red arrow).
Figure 19

Rear liner: Then, working at the front of the liner, remove the 10mm plastic nut (red arrow).

Rear liner: Working at the front bottom of the rear wheel well liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).
Figure 20

Rear liner: Working at the front bottom of the rear wheel well liner, remove the 8mm fastener (red arrow).

Rear liner: Pull the wheel well liner out of the plastic nut mounting studs.
Figure 21

Rear liner: Pull the wheel well liner out of the plastic nut mounting studs.

Rear liner: With all the fasteners removed, pull the rear of the liner away from front trim (red arrow).
Figure 22

Rear liner: With all the fasteners removed, pull the rear of the liner away from front trim (red arrow).

Rear liner: Once free, rotate the liner toward the rear of the vehicle and pull down to remove (red arrow).
Figure 23

Rear liner: Once free, rotate the liner toward the rear of the vehicle and pull down to remove (red arrow). Reverse steps to reinstall liner.

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Page last updated: Sun 5/28/2017 03:21:08 AM