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Thread: Advice - BMW 1 Series Blocked Washer Outlet

  1. #1
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    Advice - BMW 1 Series Blocked Washer Outlet

    I noticed my screen wash was getting low due to the small amount being sprayed onto my windscreen.

    Having gone to top it up the screen wash is sitting at the funnel entry point and not draining down into the system.

    I have tried blowing with a plastic straw down the hole to remove any blockages but this has not helped and also threaded some plastic wire but again no improvement.

    I know the motors are working because it is still spraying onto my screen.

    Any advice or if someone has had a similar problem please let me know.


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  2. #2
    It sounds as if there's some blockage at the spray heads, they can usually be removed, seperated from the feed tube then cleaned out and tested before refitting.

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  3. #3
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    Probably some algae at the nozzle. As above you need to remove them and blow through. Try putting them in really hot water first.
    I only use good quality OEM screen wash, cheap screen wash usually causes the problem.

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  4. #4
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Had similar on an X5 - ended up being sludge from mixing different screen wash (topping up with a different one than already in).
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  5. #5
    Master
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    As others have said, soak in hot water to dissolve sludge build up. I also use one of the needle adaptors used for blowing up footballs which often come as standard with foot-pumps and bicycle pumps. It will allow you to get a little more pressure for when blowing a problem through, assuming you don't have access to an air compressor.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_in_the_UK View Post
    Had similar on an X5 - ended up being sludge from mixing different screen wash (topping up with a different one than already in).
    Exactly this and a well known problem, try and only stick to one brand of screen wash or flush a full tank of water through first

  7. #7
    Master Zephyr's Avatar
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    Have you tried putting your finger over the working washer, then giving the washers a squirt? You may need an assistant for this.

  8. #8
    Has the OP said any jets are blocked? Sounds like the problem is elsewhere.

  9. #9
    I had similar in 2011 or 2012 with my old 3 series. I tried a few things to no avail, but I put water and some puriclean Inthe reservoir and let it do it's work for a day or so, and I had no problems after that with algae etc and the slush and the system ran clear also.

  10. #10
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    This is helpful. I have a similar challenge with my 5 series and I've been told that the wing needs to come off to clean the filter. I'll try puriclean.

  11. #11
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwillans View Post
    This is helpful. I have a similar challenge with my 5 series and I've been told that the wing needs to come off to clean the filter. I'll try puriclean.
    Yep - X5 was the same.

    The 'gunk' forms around the pump inlet in the screen wash bottle which has a fine mesh filter over it.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  12. #12
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    1 series is known for this- I only use BMW fluid which I buy in bulk from eBay. You may find it a costly job

  13. #13
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    If you cant get any water in the bottle neck itís because the neck mesh is blocked,hook it out and wash it.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by meridian View Post
    If you cant get any water in the bottle neck itís because the neck mesh is blocked,hook it out and wash it.
    +1!........if it can't get into the reservoir the problem isn`t at the jets.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    +1!........if it can't get into the reservoir the problem isn`t at the jets.
    Sometimes wonder if people even read the post before jumping to offer a solution.

  16. #16
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    Ok, so if it then turns out the bottle is actually full, the next step is take pump motor out and clean the slime off the filter.

  17. #17
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by meridian View Post
    Ok, so if it then turns out the bottle is actually full, the next step is take pump motor out and clean the slime off the filter.
    Which, if you read some of the earlier responses, might require the front wing to be removed (it did on my X5).
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  18. #18
    Master
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    Or given OP says there is still a small amount getting through to the windscreen, no harm syphoning out as much of the washer as possible in conjunction with also spraying what you can onto the windscreen then adding hot water to see if you can get any hot water down as far as the filter to dry to dissolve the gunge.

    My dealer did that on an X5 and also put some pressure on the system with compressed air, so fortunately avoided a strip down. I'd also only used the BMW wash and still happened a few times, the system seems fragile so worth using it regularly just to keep a flow going once it's fixed.

  19. #19
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    Apologies I was away all yesterday and I have just caught up with the comments.

    Having read the advice I was unsure if the reservoir was blocked and not filling, resulting in the jets only spraying a small amount due to the reservoir being nearly empty OR the reservoir wasnít filling because it was full and the jets were not spraying because they were blocked.

    I ran the jets for a long period with only this amount of spray running.



    I then filled the funnel to the reservoir with a small amount of water and it did disappear into the reservoir.

    I assume this mean the jets are blocked and why only a small amount is spraying out. Also, I have mixed screen wash brands and not always bought premium screen wash solutions.

    Is removing the jets an easy task?


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  20. #20
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper85 View Post
    Apologies I was away all yesterday and I have just caught up with the comments.

    Having read the advice I was unsure if the reservoir was blocked and not filling, resulting in the jets only spraying a small amount due to the reservoir being nearly empty OR the reservoir wasnít filling because it was full and the jets were not spraying because they were blocked.

    I ran the jets for a long period with only this amount of spray running.

    I then filled the funnel to the reservoir with a small amount of water and it did disappear into the reservoir.

    I assume this mean the jets are blocked and why only a small amount is spraying out. Also, I have mixed screen wash brands and not always bought premium screen wash solutions.

    Is removing the jets an easy task?
    I suspect from this it is the fine mesh filter on the internal pump of the washer bottle - particularly as you have mixed brands of screen wash.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  21. #21
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    So I should drain the reservoir a little more and then fill with water a puriclean and leave for a few days to try and clean the filter.

    I guess it is worth a try rather than taking it to a main dealer and let them tell me the wing needs to be removed.


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  22. #22
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper85 View Post
    So I should drain the reservoir a little more and then fill with water a puriclean and leave for a few days to try and clean the filter.

    I guess it is worth a try rather than taking it to a main dealer and let them tell me the wing needs to be removed.
    That's what I would do TBH.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  23. #23
    I would suggest removing one of the jets from it's holder and then disconnect the pipe going into it.
    If the fluid then pumps out freely it's the jets that need cleaning.
    If the fluid doesn't come out freely then blow hard down the tube and try again.
    If that doesn't work then remove the o/s/f wheel, then the inner wheel arch to access the washer fluid unit, then clean it all out and reassemble.
    https://youtu.be/4b-PHZ_zNB4


    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  24. #24
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    Good suggestion from Ralf but if after testing the jets and finding the blockage is the washer bottle end Iíd buy one of these siphonís empty it and try the cleaning solution that I think Chris suggested

    The siphon will allow you to empty the washer bottle and get a much more concentrated cleaning solution in.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Liquid-Fuel...xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

  25. #25
    Master davida's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper85 View Post
    So I should drain the reservoir a little more and then fill with water a puriclean and leave for a few days to try and clean the filter.

    I guess it is worth a try rather than taking it to a main dealer and let them tell me the wing needs to be removed.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Same thing happened to my wifeís 1 series. Fixed it by removing the hose from the spray heads and blasting compressed air through the tube into the reservoir with an air duster can. I then siphoned out the tank. Been ok now for 18 months.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_in_the_UK View Post
    Which, if you read some of the earlier responses, might require the front wing to be removed (it did on my X5).
    Not encountered a wing off as yet, we usually drop the plastic mudguard out of the way, hey ho,we all have different ways of doing things tho.

  27. #27
    What a bloody 'faff' it is getting the unit out!
    https://youtu.be/-WwqUxSbi28

    Bring back the days you could just lean into the engine compartment and access the bottle...


    PS. If you did fancy going down the wing-off approach to get to the unit:
    https://youtu.be/W6tGKICgU2U

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  28. #28
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by ralphy View Post
    What a bloody 'faff' it is getting the unit out!
    https://youtu.be/-WwqUxSbi28

    Bring back the days you could just lean into the engine compartment and access the bottle...


    PS. If you did fancy going down the wing-off approach to get to the unit:
    https://youtu.be/W6tGKICgU2U

    R
    On my 6 series you had to take the front wing off to change a headlight bulb

  29. #29
    Master
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    Gunk in the bottom of the reservoir. For some reason, BMWís suffer with this more than most.

  30. #30
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    Update - Having removed most of the contents from the reservoir and then filled it with water diluted with puriclean that I have left in the reservoir since Saturday it has improved the jets. Now when I initially spray the jets a normally amount sprays on the windscreen for 1-2 seconds and then goes back to a trickle, whereas before, it was just a constant trickle.

    I did disconnect a section of pipe at an elbow connector fixed to the bonnet that feeds the front jets and used a bicycle pump to force air through the pipe back into the reservoir. I could hear the water bubbling when this was done suggesting there is no blockage in this section of pipe.

    This makes me think the jets are blocked and I need to disconnect them and soak in hot water but have no idea how to remove them without breaking the fixings and disconnecting the electrics to the jets. If anyone has a YouTube video they can recommend (have looked but cannot find one) that would help.

    Also, the rear jet and highlight jets spray as normal so I assume this would suggest the reservoir is not blocked or these would not be spraying water.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper85 View Post
    Update - Having removed most of the contents from the reservoir and then filled it with water diluted with puriclean that I have left in the reservoir since Saturday it has improved the jets. Now when I initially spray the jets a normally amount sprays on the windscreen for 1-2 seconds and then goes back to a trickle, whereas before, it was just a constant trickle.

    I did disconnect a section of pipe at an elbow connector fixed to the bonnet that feeds the front jets and used a bicycle pump to force air through the pipe back into the reservoir. I could hear the water bubbling when this was done suggesting there is no blockage in this section of pipe.

    This makes me think the jets are blocked and I need to disconnect them and soak in hot water but have no idea how to remove them without breaking the fixings and disconnecting the electrics to the jets. If anyone has a YouTube video they can recommend (have looked but cannot find one) that would help.

    Also, the rear jet and highlight jets spray as normal so I assume this would suggest the reservoir is not blocked or these would not be spraying water.
    I don't I'm afraid but is there not a decent independent BMW specialist near you. I'd imagine for a relatively small amount they could solve your frustrations ?

    Sent from my moto g(7) plus using Tapatalk

  32. #32
    That's good to hear. When I did it years ago I think I filled the reservoir with water, I can't remember if it was warm water, then added a fair bit of puriclean. Someone told me that BMW had decided to put the washer reservoir very close to, I think it was, the engine, making the cheap washer fluid turn into a sort of gel.

  33. #33
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    When I had the same problem on a 3 series it was resolved by flushing the reservoir out and using a bike pump to great effect to force the gunge out of the tubes and jets.


    Sent from my iPhone using TZ-UK mobile app

  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by Cooper85 View Post

    I did disconnect a section of pipe at an elbow connector fixed to the bonnet that feeds the front jets and used a bicycle pump to force air through the pipe back into the reservoir. I could hear the water bubbling when this was done suggesting there is no blockage in this section of pipe.

    This makes me think the jets are blocked and I need to disconnect them and soak in hot water but have no idea how to remove them without breaking the fixings and disconnecting the electrics to the jets. If anyone has a YouTube video they can recommend (have looked but cannot find one) that would help.
    If you look up the jets on Google you will see there's just one clip that holds them in, but before doing that why not first try the bicycle pump to blow them out?

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  35. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by thegreatdogwood View Post
    On my 6 series you had to take the front wing off to change a headlight bulb
    On SWMBO's Golf you were supposed to remove the front grille, bumper and front valance to change a sidelight bulb.

    R
    Ignorance breeds Fear. Fear breeds Hatred. Hatred breeds Ignorance. Break the chain.

  36. #36
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    When cleaning washer jets I put them in hot water with a little vinegar added, this seems to help dissolve any gunk.

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