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  #1  
Old 05-17-2018, 08:50 PM
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E70 Clogged Firewall Rain Water Drains

My 2012 X5 3.5d has two rain water drains just ahead of the firewall.
How do you access the passenger side drain which is underneath the E-Box and Cabin Air Filter?

I've seen numerous Google discussions about the driver footwell area accumulating water and, to a lesser degree, the passenger side footwell doing the same. Frequently fingers get pointed incorrectly at the sunroof drains for this problem. While those drains can/do get clogged, if you own an E70 then you owe it to yourself to check, clean and maintain these firewall drains. Chances are high that your wet carpet is the result of one of these two drains not doing their job. My E70/X5 is garage kept and I still have clogged drains.

In LHD variants, the driver side drain is easily accessed under the Vacum Brake Booster. Unfortunately, it's evil twin on the passenger side seems virtually inaccessible and in my situation, clogged.


Attempting to dislodge the Electronics box that is blocking my access to this clogged drain, does not appeal or look like the best approach. Would fender and liner removal be the better course of action? ... or is there access from below via removal of the belly pans, etc. ?


Thank you to everybody who takes time to read this post.

Last edited by Busrider; 05-18-2018 at 12:47 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-18-2018, 01:02 PM
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Recently was doing work in that area. I had to remove both the fender liner and the DDE/ECU for unrelated work, so decided to clean that drain (it was indeed clogged, mostly with dirt.
I found removing of fender liner was pretty tough, but it will still be better option for you, to avoid removing DDE and its housing, cabin filters and their housing, etc.
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Old 05-19-2018, 10:55 AM
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Seattle - Thanks for your insight and suggestion. Fender & Liner removal appears to be the route I'm taking this weekend.
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Old 05-28-2018, 10:54 PM
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Busrider, about a year ago my Alarm was sounding faint. After some debug, i found the water on the drivers side was up so high it was deadening the alarm (shocked it was still working as the horn was in the water). I cleaned the drain like you mentioned and checked the other side for good measure and sure enough it was clogged but with way less water. I had to pull up the box and practically disassembly it to get in there and clean the drains. I couldn't come up with a good way to get in there otherwise. I did speculate you may be able to get at it from the bottom side if you find the right trim under there to remove, but not sure...
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Old 11-21-2018, 02:38 PM
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Could these drains be reached by using a coat hanger, weed eater string or a fish tape to reach down and dislodge anything clogging the drains?

My X5M has been having odd issues in that it'll go into trans failsafe during aggressive/sudden lane changes and/or rainy days on sweeping onramps seems to be where it happens the most. I'd written XDelete about their AWD disable flash to see if I could get it sooner than later to remove the transfer case from the equation to see if it or the transmission might need a rebuild but they said I'm getting all electrical codes and to check my PT-CAN connections...so doing a quick search of "E70 clogged" brought me here thinking maybe some module is getting wet but I've truly got no clue where to start.
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Last edited by m5james; 11-21-2018 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:49 AM
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I think you can get at them from the bottom with a coat hangar. The driver side is easy to clean from the top, but the passenger side one is more challenging as thereís a lot to remove so getting it from the bottom is a good idea.

Here is a good picture of the problem. The rubber pops out and can be cleaned easily. Last year I did the fish wire trick and it worked for last year but itís clogged again so went in deeper this time. Unbelievable how much junk accumulated in here.
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Old 12-15-2018, 12:20 PM
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arb - reading the postings I'm confused. Did you get the water drain out from the bottom, or after removing side panels or ebox?



I have the impression you got it from the bottom - if so, which trim pieces did you have to remove? And was this on the drivers side, passenger side, or both?


Assuming you got it from the bottom, that is really useful information. Seems like that should be a regular maintenance item - like whenever changing the oil? Particularly if the car is not garaged.
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Old 12-15-2018, 12:26 PM
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The time around, i went in from the top and while i was trying to clean out the drain, the drain in the plastic from the wheel arch around it came out. I can't put the drain back in as you can see in my pictures the plastic around it is broken from the wheel arch plastic.

Since the drain fell, i had to remove a few fasteners on the bottom trim pieces to reach up from the bottom and get it. I tried reaching all the way up to the top of the wheel arch and i didn't quite make it, was about 6 inches awy from where the drain would be.

If i had actually removed the bottom trim instead of just removing the fasteners and bending it away to get my arm up in there i could have gotten up in there.

This time, only the drivers side was plugged, so i had top access. Haven't touched the drives side with the ebox again as it's not plugged right now.

As part of this process i looked at a new wheel arch and i see they introduced a new part number with a new drain in it. I've got a 2007 which had the old drain. Someone must have spotted this problem along the way and made an ECO to improve it.
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Old 12-20-2018, 08:57 AM
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What's the point of that rubber at the bottom of the drain? I wonder if there would be issues of removing that and just running with the wider opening.

I could only guess that it prevents bugs/rodents from going in??
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Old 12-20-2018, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arb View Post
The time around, i went in from the top and while i was trying to clean out the drain, the drain in the plastic from the wheel arch around it came out. I can't put the drain back in as you can see in my pictures the plastic around it is broken from the wheel arch plastic.

Since the drain fell, i had to remove a few fasteners on the bottom trim pieces to reach up from the bottom and get it. I tried reaching all the way up to the top of the wheel arch and i didn't quite make it, was about 6 inches awy from where the drain would be.

If i had actually removed the bottom trim instead of just removing the fasteners and bending it away to get my arm up in there i could have gotten up in there.

This time, only the drivers side was plugged, so i had top access. Haven't touched the drives side with the ebox again as it's not plugged right now.

As part of this process i looked at a new wheel arch and i see they introduced a new part number with a new drain in it. I've got a 2007 which had the old drain. Someone must have spotted this problem along the way and made an ECO to improve it.
Hi Arb,

I have a 2008, so I'm likely facing the same issues that you did.
Can you help me with where these 2 bottom pieces (the ones you show in the photos) of the drain tubes are located?
I don't see any holes when I look at the bottom of the chassis or the inside of the wheel arches, and you describe removing plastic trim pieces to get to them.

Thanks in advance.
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