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Rear defroster not working

I picked my 2021 SR+ last December and haven't done much winter driving since I work from home ever since the RONA started. The few times I did go out when it was snowing, the rear defroster didn't work. Brought it to SC last week and they replaced the rear window where the heating elements are located.

Was wondering if anyone else has experienced this or is it just another freak occurrence?
 
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Mine currently doesn't work. Mobile service came out and supposedly fixed it but it still doesn't work.
I brought mine in on a Friday and Mobile service technicians at the SC checked it on Saturday and told me the car was ready and it was working and heating to 56 degrees celsius. I went in on Monday in the middle of a storm and told the service advisor I was confused since he told me they would be replacing the entire window. I told him I'm simply gonna take it out of the garage and dump some snow on it to see if it works. He was just as confused and got it re-checked on the spot. They replaced it within a couple of hours and I went to pick up the car the next day. I suggest you insist that it doesn't work and that they are wasting your time and money going back and forth. That seemed to light a fire under their "a**es" to get it fixed.
 
I brought mine in on a Friday and Mobile service technicians at the SC checked it on Saturday and told me the car was ready and it was working and heating to 56 degrees celsius. I went in on Monday in the middle of a storm and told the service advisor I was confused since he told me they would be replacing the entire window. I told him I'm simply gonna take it out of the garage and dump some snow on it to see if it works. He was just as confused and got it re-checked on the spot. They replaced it within a couple of hours and I went to pick up the car the next day. I suggest you insist that it doesn't work and that they are wasting your time and money going back and forth. That seemed to light a fire under their "a**es" to get it fixed.
It honestly isn't wasting any of my time. Mobile service came out and fixed it while I was working, and I barely drive now and situations requiring defrost aren't so common during those few times that I do drive which is why it took me so long to figure out that he didn't actually fix anything.
 
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stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
11,971
7,736
Is there a way to test if mine works if I have nothing to defrost?
12/10/20 delivery
I had a defroster line cut from delivery. The easy way to test (even individual lines) is just to spray the glass with water from a spray bottle, then turn it on. If it works you should see the water evaporate/disappear from the places with the defroster lines.
 
2019 M3 AWD LR- I had to bring my M3 into service for rear defroster not working last month. They said they had to reboot a processor and it was working. This month it’s not working again, but one of the heater lines has separated from the glass and fallen off. The service center has told me this isn’t covered by warranty and they want $800 to repair it. I’m guessing they plan on replacing the whole window.
2 problems with this: 1. The heater grid just fell off the window. That’s got to be a defect under warranty.
2. A defroster heater line could be repaired, possibly with a $13 kit, from what I see on the Internet.

So - - has anyone with this problem had to pay for a new window?
 

stopcrazypp

Well-Known Member
Dec 8, 2007
11,971
7,736
2019 M3 AWD LR- I had to bring my M3 into service for rear defroster not working last month. They said they had to reboot a processor and it was working. This month it’s not working again, but one of the heater lines has separated from the glass and fallen off. The service center has told me this isn’t covered by warranty and they want $800 to repair it. I’m guessing they plan on replacing the whole window.
2 problems with this: 1. The heater grid just fell off the window. That’s got to be a defect under warranty.
2. A defroster heater line could be repaired, possibly with a $13 kit, from what I see on the Internet.

So - - has anyone with this problem had to pay for a new window?
Yes, official fix is a whole window replacement, they aren't just going to fix the defroster line with a kit. Usually when a defroster line breaks, the rest of the lines still work though as they are wired such that it's not all in series.

Yes, it can typically be repaired if the issue is just a line on the glass. There are kits out there that you can use to paint on a replacement line. However, you need to verify it's really a line that broke off, not the whole defroster not turning on at all (like happened for you in the past).
 
Yes, official fix is a whole window replacement, they aren't just going to fix the defroster line with a kit. Usually when a defroster line breaks, the rest of the lines still work though as they are wired such that it's not all in series.

Yes, it can typically be repaired if the issue is just a line on the glass. There are kits out there that you can use to paint on a replacement line. However, you need to verify it's really a line that broke off, not the whole defroster not turning on at all (like happened for you in the past).
Service follow up: the center agreed it was a defect and replaced the glass under warranty!
 

hcdavis3

HCD3
Supporting Member
Mar 3, 2019
2,413
1,620
02571
I picked my 2021 SR+ last December and haven't done much winter driving since I work from home ever since the RONA started. The few times I did go out when it was snowing, the rear defroster didn't work. Brought it to SC last week and they replaced the rear window where the heating elements are located.

Was wondering if anyone else has experienced this or is it just another freak occurrence?
Yup. Replaced in December. Under warranty.
 
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BigNick

Infamous Fat Sweaty Guy
Dec 3, 2017
1,691
1,853
Pennsylvania, USA
Yes, official fix is a whole window replacement, they aren't just going to fix the defroster line with a kit. Usually when a defroster line breaks, the rest of the lines still work though as they are wired such that it's not all in series.

Yes, it can typically be repaired if the issue is just a line on the glass. There are kits out there that you can use to paint on a replacement line. However, you need to verify it's really a line that broke off, not the whole defroster not turning on at all (like happened for you in the past).
The employee who attached my temporary registration in the rear window put the (scotch) tape right over several defroster grid lines instead of taping BETWEEN the lines as they should have.

By the time I received my permanent registration card, the tape wouldn't peel off cleanly. I had to remove carefully via fingernail to ensure I didn't scratch/damage any lines. When I used the defroster a couple days ago, all lines appeared to be getting power properly.

I should have removed and re-taped it properly on delivery day, but no harm done. The lack of attention to detail does bug me, however.
 
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Service follow up: the center agreed it was a defect and replaced the glass under warranty!
We’ll, the glass is replaced, but there is no indication the defroster is working again. I’ve given up for now. The service center is too far away for me to want a third trip yet. Perhaps when my closer center in Paramus recovers from hurricane Ida and reopens. . .
 
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