BMW Seat Belt Repair – 20 Minutes
If the seat belt on your BMW is not retracting all the way, or is getting stuck when you unbuckle it, there is a simple repair that takes less than 20 minutes to make it operate like new again.
My millennial children love to use the term “this repair is a life hack dad!”; or as we older folk used to say back in the 1970’s “this repair is a shortcut”. Both terms describe the act of avoiding the replacement of an expensive BMW part by performing a cheap but effective repair on it. Whether you prefer “life hack or shortcut”, they both apply to fixing a BMW seat belt that won’t retract.
A BMW seat belt repair is so embarrassingly simple, you may question this article as being legitimate. TRUST US! We have performed dozens of stuck seat belt repairs at the BMW Repair Guide, and this “life hack” works every time (knock on my millenial childrens wood heads).
“The reason why seat belts stop retracting is because the fabric becomes dried out and brittle with age.”
So what’s the secret? Furniture polish. Yes, that’s not a typo. Furniture polish. I prefer lemon scented, but if you are a single bachelor driving around shirtless in your convertible M3, you may prefer something with more of an almond aroma. Or maybe not.
The reason why seat belts stop retracting is because the fabric becomes dried out and brittle with age. This causes the belt to seize up in the spring mechanism, leaving half the belt annoyingly caught in your door when you try and close it. Furniture polish will moisturize and lubricate the the seat belt fabric, allowing it to retract like new again.
Any type of spray furniture polish will work, even the cheap stuff at the dollar store. It’s just a matter of spaying on and wiping off. Multiple applications may be needed for severely dried out belts.
No parts are needed for this repair
Tools and Supplies
Spray furniture polish
- Pull the seat belt all the way out of the seat belt mechanism. Using an aerosol furniture polish, spray a section of the belt being sure to fully saturate the fabric. Let sit for 10 seconds then wipe off thoroughly with a clean cloth rag. Repeat on the opposite side of the belt.
- Repeat spraying the furniture polish all the way down the belt. For extremely dry and brittle seat belts, repeat the spraying process until the seat belt fabric becomes soft and retracts properly.
- When you are finished with spraying the belt, pull the seat belt all the way out then let it retract ten or more times until it retracts easily on its own.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us. And congratulations for Doing It Yourself!