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Washer Pump Testing and Replacing
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Washer Pump Testing and Replacing

Nick Czerula

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$50

Talent:

*****

Tools:

Flathead screwdriver, plastic prying tool, tape

Applicable Models:

BMW X5 (2000-06)

Parts Required:

Washer pump, sealing grommet, electrical connector pigtail

Hot Tip:

Be careful not to short wires together

Performance Gain:

Diagnose washer pump

Complementary Modification:

Replace washer hoses

The windshield washer pump is responsible for pressuring and pumping washer fluid to the windshield and headlight washer nozzles. The washer pumps and pump sealing grommets can leak. When left unrepaired for some time, the washer fluid ruins the electrical connector leaving your windshield washer pump inoperative. It is important to deal with the fluid leak immediately. Replace the washer pump and grommet together.

In this tech article I will go over how to test and replace the windshield washer pump.

The washer pumps are located at the back of the washer fluid reservoir (green arrow).
Figure 1

The washer pumps are located at the back of the washer fluid reservoir (green arrow). Yellow arrow points to the pump for the windshield and the blue arrow points to the pump for the rear window.

Disconnect the electrical connector for the pump you want to test by pressing the release tab and pulling it off.
Figure 2

Disconnect the electrical connector for the pump you want to test by pressing the release tab and pulling it off. This photo shows the backside of the electrical connector. The purple / black wire (red arrow) is the battery volt feed. It is hot with the key ON. The brown wire (green arrow) is the ground wire. The ground is activated when the pump is activated. If you were to test these wires with the washer inactive, battery volts would be present on the purple/black with the key ON. The brown wire would only have ground when the washer button is pressed. Always check and confirm the wiring on your vehicle using an up to date wiring diagram. Connect a test light or DVOM across the washer pump electrical connector terminals. Press the washer button. The test light will light. The DVOM will read Battery volts (voltage the battery is at, 12 volts for example). Keep in mind, a test light may light with a low supply voltage. I suggest load testing using a test light and a DVOM. Connect the DVOM across the washer pump electrical connector terminals and take a reading. It should read battery volts when the washer button is pressed. Then connect an incandescent bulb style test light to battery ground and touch the test light probe tip to the positive wire you are backprobing with the DVOM. Your reading should hold steady. A maximum drop in voltage of 0.5 volts is OK. Anything more is a problem. You can test the ground of the pump the same way. Connect your DVOM to the brown wire at the connector, then battery negative. You should have a reading close to 0.0 volts. Then connect an incandescent bulb style test light to battery positive (you can use the jump start stud under the hood) and touch the test light probe tip to the positive wire you are backprobing with your DVOM at the brown wire. The voltage reading should change more than 0.2 volts.

To replace one of the pumps, start by removing the two 10mm plastic nuts (green arrows).
Figure 3

To replace one of the pumps, start by removing the two 10mm plastic nuts (green arrows).

Then lift the reservoir up slightly to access the level sensor.
Figure 4

Then lift the reservoir up slightly to access the level sensor. Disconnect the level sensor electrical connector by squeezing the release tab and pulling it off the sensor.

Disconnect the electrical connectors by squeezing the release tabs (green arrows) and pulling them straight off.
Figure 5

Disconnect the electrical connectors by squeezing the release tabs (green arrows) and pulling them straight off. Then pull the washer hoses off the pumps (yellow arrows). Be prepared to catch any leaking fluid once the hoses are removed.

To replace the level sensor, rotate it 90° counterclockwise and pull it out of the reservoir.
Figure 6

To replace the level sensor, rotate it 90 degrees counterclockwise and pull it out of the reservoir. To replace the washer pump, pull the pump away from the reservoir to detach it from the holder. Then pull it up and out of the grommet. Replace the sealing grommet (yellow arrow). Then install the pump. Reassemble the reservoir and check the operation of the pumps.

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Comments and Suggestions:
warren Comments: On the washer pump, Where is the power coming from after you have power out from the fuse but no power at pumps?
December 3, 2016
warren Comments: I have no power to pump but fuse is good and power out from fuse is ok.
December 2, 2016
James Comments: Great article but does not address my problem which is an intermittent washing. Sometimes the windshield washers work perfectly and other times though I can hear the pump running, water does not come out onto the screen. There are no leaks under the car. If the pump is running where is the water going?
November 21, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Pump could be faulty or frozen. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Muninger z Comments: Thanks. Saved me a lot of money. Very accurate
September 3, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
X5 Owner Comments: Additionally, I used plumbers silicone grease to coat all rubber surfaces of the new replacement"grommets"
rubber seals on each of three washer fluid strainers before plugging them into their holes in the washer tank. Also I silicone grease coated the pump inflow & outflow pipe ends before inserting in tank grommets and re-attaching washer hoses. Improves water seal and slows oxidation and friction wear of the grommet surfaces. My front windshield washer pump itself leaked at 10 years. Dumped washer tank onto garage floor. Rear pump had minor leaking at pump to tank-grommet interface. I replaced all three grommets with greased new ones before inserting into washer tank. Only replaced the inboard leaking pump but put a spare pump in trunk compartment. Probably need to pull pumps and grommets/strainers to clean and re-grease pump/grommet seal every three years or so. I would recommend you guys add a picture or diagram showing correct washer tubing routing for reassembly. I failed to note proper outboard pump washer hose routing during disassembly/tank removal and suspect I incorrectly routed my outboard washer hose under washer tank. Cannot find a reference hose routing picture nor diagram anywhere on internet. Do not own a service manual for 2006 X5 3.0i so would appreciate advice on hose routing.
May 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Other than the photos here, I don't have it. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. Give them the year and model of your vehicle and ask them to email you the relevant pages from the parts book.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
nriko Comments: thank you!
May 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No problem. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ScottyKendell Comments: Awesome Post, thank you sir
April 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Andy Comments: Hi,
I'm retired in a small fishing village on the West Coast of South Africa +- 230Kms north of Cape Town. Because of this I'm miles away from any BMW service station or dealer.
Congratulations!!!!
This is probably the best article on how to replace a BMW X5 windscreen washer pump.
Thank you very much.
I'll definitely be consulting you in the future.
Have a great day.
Andy
October 2, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 

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Page last updated: Wed 12/7/2016 02:41:13 AM