Repairing the wing mirror indicator on a 211

jberks

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Firstly, Thanks to Malcolm as always for sending me the details on getting it to pieces. As usual, couldn't have done it without you.

Last week I started getting warnings about the N/S mirror indicator (pic1). Folding the mirror in and out by hand I was able to get it to flash, but once fully out, it didn't. Based on this I assumed a duff wire (mirrors have been on autofold for 4 years) so this is how I fixed it.
However, these instructions also show a strip down so broken glass, broken indicator all go the same way.
1) Remove glass
The glass has a spring retaining clip behind (pic2). Angle the glass down and out. You'll just be able to see the top of the inner edge. I followed the spring along and pushed it towards the front of the car until it unclipped and came off. Then jiggle and gently prise the mirror glass off the retaining lugs until it comes free (takes a bit of bravery this bit).
Once free, remove the wires for the heater pic3 (and possibly the dimmer). They're a bit reluctant but they will give. Again jiggle them!
 

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jberks

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Ok - now the glass is off, you can remove the housing. This is held in with a wide clip at the back. It is removed by pushing a screwdriver in from the outside (pic1) and pushing the clip back, whilst pulling on the mirror housing. Its a bit clearer in pic 2 - and you can see some of what you need to getat now the glass is removed.
 

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jberks

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The indicator attaches to the wiring by a cleverly positioned connector. As the housing slides on, it connects. To test the indicator I needed some flexibility so prised the connector from the mirror frame and removed the indicator from the outer housing. Its heldin with 2 phillips screws and once removed will peel off
 

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jberks

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Now the fun bit. Plugging the indicator back in and waggling the wires around didn't help identify which wire was at fault and I was a bit at a loss. I figured its probably not 12v so a tester isn't going to help, maybe a meter but there's nothing to touch it on to test. I considered giving up and looking into getting a replacement loom but that seems like admitting defeat and I don't like to do that. So, after a bit of head scratching I cut and peeled back the fabric covering on the loom, releasing the 4 wires and threaded the plug back through the mirror frame towards the car, so I had more wire to play with.. Then I got a break, literally. One wire was completely broken, including the insulation and judging by the corrosion on the copper wire, had been poorly for a while.

Feeling smug I cut back the insulation, twisted the wires together and tested. Bingo. It flashed.
 

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jberks

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I thought I'd do a quick test to ensure that I had got the whole solution and, lo and behold I could still get it to stop by wagging the wires. Bugger.
So, I gently pulled on one of the ok wires and noticed that the insulation started to stretch at one point. Pulling harder I was able to snap it. So I tugged on the remaining 2 and another snapped (if you do this, make sure you know which ends match up to which!). Also, note they all snapped at exactly the same point. As this is clearly a weak spot, It's probable that if yours has gone, it will be at the same point. The 3rd wire seems to be ok for now but given that its probably damaged under the insulation I'm probably going to cut it and repair it anyway.
Connecting the wires up and retested, all appears well now.
Interestingly, when I snapped the 2nd, i was still able to get the unit to flash, so I can only presume that some of the wires are unused.
 

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jberks

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For now she's locked away in the garage. Tomorrow I'm off to Maplin for some heat shrink, then I'll post a repair pic.
 

Alex M Grieve

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Excellent post sir. If anyone ever suffers a traumatic demolition of the mirror (clash of mirrors with a car, or even a stationary object), if you do nothing else, try to retrieve the colour coded cover. The replacement of this, and spraying it to match your paintwork, is by far the most expensive part of the repair. If you have the colour coded cover, watch the repair man's face fall when you ask him to use this rather than furnish one from scratch!
 
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jberks

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Good point Alex. My Audi one cost over £250! The second time the Mrs clipped it, I rebuilt all the lugs with superglue and polished out the scratches. To my suprise it looked fine when back on the car.

Anyway, I was going to post something about the repair and rebuild but to be honest it was simply chop out 1" above and below the break, solder in some new wire, seal some heat shrink around the repair - and as they say, reassembly is a reversal of the dismantling instructions.
The only extra think I've learned is refitting the mirror glass.
Looking from the outside, the spring clip wraps around a pin on the right and tucks up under a clip on the left. Leave the left hand side loose until the mirror is fitted, then wind the mirror glass down and in which should allow you to access the clip with a wide screwdriver and drop it down onto its retaining lug.

The other things are
1) Ensure you've put the wiring back onto the centre retaining clip or it will peek out when folded.
2) one plane of movement on the mirror glass is now temperamental (was ok the 1st time I reassembled but not after tidying up the wiring) so it may be that I will need to dismantle again and repair those too. After all, if the indicator wires were shot, its safe to assume the others aren't in great nick either.
3) Parts to repair from Maplin, around £2. (1m of wire and a pack of heat shrink). A tad cheaper than a dealer fix I imagine.
 
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harpersimon

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This is excellent - thanks. I feel more confident in replacing the indicator part now - since having the car for 1 week and someone driving by taking it clean off..
Luckily they clashed with the indicator lense - and all the LED's still work - but no damage to the housing! Mirror Glass and Indicator unit required.
 

television

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This is excellent - thanks. I feel more confident in replacing the indicator part now - since having the car for 1 week and someone driving by taking it clean off..
Luckily they clashed with the indicator lense - and all the LED's still work - but no damage to the housing! Mirror Glass and Indicator unit required.

There is no info on just changing the lens for the repeater,,once the cover is off it all becomes clear
 
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jberks

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Addendum

The mirror In/out is not working now and the memory function isn't working. Indicator is working well mind!!
That said, the in/out did jump into life for a few mins and now that I've locked and unlocked the car (mirrors folded) it doesn't again. No whirr, nothing.
So the moral is .......
If the indicator wiring is shot, it shouldn't be a great surprise that the rest isn't far behind and fiddling with one set may just be enough to kill off the others. So, if you fix one set of wires, save yourself some extra aggro and do them all at the same time!!
 

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Taking the mirror off and working on the bench saves a lot of strain on the wires and components, rather than leaving them hanging down. It is difficult doing the joints outside as well
 
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jberks

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Taking the mirror off and working on the bench saves a lot of strain on the wires and components, rather than leaving them hanging down. It is difficult doing the joints outside as well

Absolutely - and if the connector was where you'd logically put it - just inside the door, the other side of the mirror mounting I'd definately do it this way. But, because it requires the door panel to be removed, I find myself very reluctant.

Aside from the potentially 'very expensive' ribbon cable issue I was warned about (which scares the hell out of me), there's the very fact of stripping the door. IME very often, once stripped, the door trim is never quite the same. Creaks and rattles have a nasty tendancy of popping up.

So, I think I'll probably struggle through and fix it in situ and avoid disturbing any more than I have to. As you see from the photos, if you cut the loom cover back, and withdraw the wiring, the break point is easily accessible and whilst I won't be able to splice in as much new wire as I'd like - it avoids any of the risks involved in stripping the door.
 

Alex Crow

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errr... the door panel does not need to be removed on a 211!!!!

there is a removable plastic panel at the front edge which allows access to the DCM plugs, it's very easy to remove the mirrors on these cars, fixing the wires in a way that means they fold neatly and don't get trapped is the hard part. the job usually takes me 3/4 hr or even more as i replace all the wires the are subjected to the bending forces, taking great care to keep the overall lengths the same!

i haven't read all the details in this thread but i am sure malcolm has got the right methods, it's definately his thing.
 
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jberks

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errr... the door panel does not need to be removed on a 211!!!!

there is a removable plastic panel at the front edge which allows access to the DCM plugs, it's very easy to remove the mirrors on these cars, fixing the wires in a way that means they fold neatly and don't get trapped is the hard part. the job usually takes me 3/4 hr or even more as i replace all the wires the are subjected to the bending forces, taking great care to keep the overall lengths the same!

i haven't read all the details in this thread but i am sure malcolm has got the right methods, it's definately his thing.

Absolutely agree about Malcolms method and I'd much, much rather do it that way, but not if I need to remove the door trim. Tell me more about this plastic panel..........:)
 

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I sent you the door card removal detail not to remove the complete door card,but to remove the little plastic cover on the door card, just under the top removable cover. the comes out and the connectors are there,,just prise it out with a blunt blade
 
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jberks

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I sent you the door card removal detail not to remove the complete door card,but to remove the little plastic cover on the door card, just under the top removable cover. the comes out and the connectors are there,,just prise it out with a blunt blade


Thanks Malcolm.
Nothing arrived as yet - has it gone ok?
 

television

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Thanks Malcolm.
Nothing arrived as yet - has it gone ok?

I have not sent anything else,,that plastic panel that prises out,is all you need to do,,its on the top part of the door card, at the front,, the top triangular panel prises off from the top to get to the screws,,the one below that on the door card just comes out to get to the connectors
 

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When you get it all working again I will copy this into the main DIY section.
 

harpersimon

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yes sorry - my wording. I meant they hit the repeater unit and that sustained all the damage, and that is what I am going to replace. £18 from MB
 


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