BMW Bavaria (E3) Heater Blower Replacement

BMW E3 Heater/Blower in the engine compartment of a 1972 BMW Bavaria
BMW E3 Heater/Blower in the engine compartment of a 1972 BMW Bavaria

The heater blower in our 1972 BMW Bavaria suddenly decided to stop working. This car doesn’t have air conditioning, so I don’t know if the setup is different on an AC equipped car. It does seem to be the same on non-AC E9 coupes.

I dreaded having to repair it, because I thought I’d have to take the console apart to get to it.

BMW E3 Heater/Blower assembly
BMW E3 Heater/Blower assembly

It turned out that the blower is easily accessible, mounted under a flap just in front of the windshield in the engine compartment. Removing the flap gives access to the blower, held in by just 3 screws. The protective grid over the fan is held in by friction – the edge of the grid goes into a groove in the bracket that holds the fan.

BMW E3 Heater/Blower
BMW E3 Heater/Blower motor

I asked the Senior Six mailing list about alternative replacement motors but I found one on eBay that looked like an exact replacement, except for the mounting bracket.

The cutout for the motor on each bracket was exactly the same shape, though the case of the motor itself was different between the original and the replacement. That didn’t make any difference – the new motor and fan fit onto the old bracket, held by four clips. Bosch, the manufacturer of the motor, even went so far as to balance the fan. On the new fan, you can see wire clips on some of the fan blades.

BMW E3 Heater/Blower mounting bracket
BMW E3 Heater/Blower mounting bracket

The eBay seller advertised the blower as a VW NOS heater fan with the p/n 90157132032. Usually when I enter something like that in Google, I get a hit – this time, no deal.

The box the replacement fan came in shows a VW/Porsche number. Maybe a professional can figure it out.

Porsche part number for heater/blower assembly
Porsche part number for heater/blower assembly




3 Replies to “BMW Bavaria (E3) Heater Blower Replacement”

  1. I’ve been searching for information about diagnosing a bad heater blower. Mine crapped out, but I’m wondering if it could be something else, aside from electrical (which I’m planning to test with a multitmeter during my 1 hour of alternate-side parking here in NYC).

    What else should I look for when the heater stops blowing?


    1972 BMW Bavaria, Blue Automatic

  2. Bill,

    The eBay seller’s ID is walletvtx1800. I don’t think he had anymore.

    Bill Gau, on the Senior Six Registry, found the Porsche part number that is on the box (901 571 320 32) and it has been superseded by Porsche part number 911 571 320 32.

    You can call Jim Stansfield at Mesa Performance: (800) 221-6372. They have new motors and you reuse your fan blades.

    He said, "We have the motors only for both the Porsche and the BMW versions of those fan assemblages. The motors are identical, down to the Bosch # stamped in the casing, the difference being, the BMW one has a clamshell black plastic surround that makes it fit properly into the plastic bracket Leslie shows on his site. The Porsche version comes with just the metal motor. "

    "IF you have the BMW version WITH the plastic surround, you can buy the cheaper Porsche version, move the surround from old motor to new, and save $30.00. Last week I mentioned the BMW motor was @ $140.00, but they’ve come down to $110.00, and the Porsche version is down to $80.00. If your Bavaria/Koope has the older motor, it will be a slightly larger metal casing without the surround, and then you’ll have to buy the $110.00 version."

    He can also explain how to get the fan off the motor shaft. He has been extremely helpful with my Bavaria.

    If you’re not on the Senior Six mailing list, you can subscribe with the instructions here. These guys know more about E3’s than anyone.


  3. Did the Ebay seller have any more?
    I have gone through a couple used ones over the past few years.

    It is very cold with out a heater hear in Vancouver right now!

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