BMW Z3 Droopy Glovebox

The factory installed glove box on my 1997 1.9 Z3 was definitely not an area that BMW decided to spend a lot of time on. After a few years the stamped plastic box began to sag in the middle under the weight of the glove box door and its contents. And who wants droopy drawers in their sports car? Here is an easy fix that will cost you about $5 and take around an hour to complete. The basic premise is to brace the top area of the glove box with a metal support, and insert sheet metal screws into the support from inside the glove box to eliminate the sagging.

You will need a stubby phillips screw driver, an awl, a drill and the use of a grinder. All of the following items were purchased from Ace Hardware:

* 2 3/16 washers

* 2 3/8 washers

* 2 number 8 x 32 1 1/4″ sheet metal screws with nuts

* 2 vinyl bushings cut to about 3/8″ in height

* 2 flip cap screw covers (many colors to choose from)

* 1 10″ x 1″ metal brace

* Loctite

It is important that you purchase the 10″ x 1″ brace at Ace Hardware unless you want to do some serious drilling. The pre-drilled holes at the ends of the brace fit over the existing screws that protrude from the bottom of the glove box. The next set of holes provide a great place to drill the holes into the glove box.

Folow the instructions in the MZ3.net article “Stopping Glovebox Rattles” to remvoe the glovebox from the car. Turn the glove box over and place the metal brace over the two existing screws coming out of the glove box. Use the awl to mark the centers of the holes that you will be drilling into the glove box. Note that the holes are offset, so use your judgement as to where to mark the centers for drilling.

Refer to the picture at right and the metal brace above. You will need to notch the brace in the center to allow for the latch of the glovebox to close. With the metal brace resting on top of the existing screws (A), outline the area to be removed from the brace for the glovebox latch (C) using a black marker. Remove the metal brace and use the grinder to remove the area you have marked. Place the brace back on the glove box and trim the notched area until the glovebox latches closed easily.

Now you are ready to drill. To avoid drilling into the glove box drawer, hold a wooden block inside the compartment near the latch where the drill bit will come through. Using a 3/16 bit, drill the marked holes into the glove box. After you finish drilling, take this opportunity to give the glovebox a thorough cleaning.

Attach the metal brace to the glove box by assembling as illustrated below.

After you have attached the metal brace and tightened the nuts firmly, add a drop of Loctite where the bolt leaves the nut. This will prevent the nut from vibrating loose. Close the caps over the screw heads and reinstall the glovebox into the car. Again refer to the the MZ3.net article “Stopping Glovebox Rattles” for instructions on reinstalling the glovebox.