E36 DIY: Remove Dash Console

Written by john johnston
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The dash console on your BMW E36 is used to house the instrument cluster, radio and heating controls. If the console becomes damaged, the components which it houses will no longer work correctly. If it is the instrument cluster that becomes damaged it can also be a serious safety issue when on the road. The best thing to do is to remove the console from the dash in order to have the parts repaired or replaced.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Socket wrench
  • Phillips screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Open up the bonnet of your BMW and use a socket wrench to remove the clamp bolt on the negative battery terminal. Pull the negative cable away from the terminal.

  2. 2

    Use your hands to pull the face plate away from the front of the dash. Place the plate to one side. Remove the knobs and dials off the equipment on the front of the dash and place with the face plate.

  3. 3

    Use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the screws fix the A/C vent covers in place. Remove the covers from the dash. Unscrew the screws which hold the radio and its bracket in place. Slide the radio out of the dash. Unhook the electrical wiring in the back of the radio and completely remove it from the dash.

  4. 4

    Locate the two screws which attach the rubber bezel around the edges of the instrument cluster. Use a Phillips screwdriver to remove the screws and pull the bezel away from the dash.

  5. 5

    Lift the cluster out of the dash. Reach around the rear of the cluster and pull out the electrical connector and wiring. Remove the cluster completely from the BMW to complete the console removal process.

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