BMW e46 ‘Life Hammer’ Stealth install

This quite laterally is the 15 minute diy e46 ‘hack’ that could just save your life. The Life hammer alone will do that, this ‘Stealth install’ is just what I think is the best way to store the life hammer until, god forbid you need it…

The placement, well the Life Hammer comes with a nifty mounting bracket, but it’s designed to be mounted on the inside of the driver’s door. I just didn’t feel that was the best place on our e46. Almost half of collisions are side on, the very Life Hammer I might need could well be broken or buckled into the metal of the door out or my reach. On a day-to-day basis, it’s also possible to knock it of its mount whilst getting in and out of the car, and this is just me – it looks bad too. Most of all the bulkhead on a car is just about the strongest part and built to maintain itself during a collision, so mounting the Life Hammer into the ‘flap box’ under the light switch to the side of the steering wheel made utter sense to me – Best of all it fits perfectly, you can reach it with ease, plus if needed your sunglasses could still fit in there. I don’t keep anything in there myself, so it’s only use is as the location for the Life Hammer

It’s really easy too, but again – this is what I’ve done and I’m sharing it here with you – if you’re in any doubts or not too handy then seek professional installation *follow this guide at your own risk

What you’ll need:

Life hammer
Small drill (Dremel ect)
plastic panel removal tool (or credit card)
Bolt, nut and locking washer
Screwdriver & Allen key

Open the ‘flap box’ under the light switch, remove the two Philips head screws that retain the box in place. Now gently pry open the top of the box with a plastic panel removal tool to free it from the dash board – It’s lightly glued in and some will just pop out and others will take a little wiggle

Dismantle the Life Hammer mounting bracket by removing the allen bolt, keeping the U shaped clip that holds the Life Hammer. Now very carfully line up the Life Hammer with the U shape clip attached into the ‘flap box’ to work out where to drill the hole into the top of the box to secure the U shaped clip

Use a bolt, nut and locking washer that’ll fit the hole in the U shaped clip and be long enough to work without being too long as not to be in the way when putting everything back into place. It took me a little while of fiddling, but I got it spot on and it’s a snug yet assured fit. I made sure the lid closed and opened without issue too. Drilled the hole, used the thread lock and reassembled everything in reverse order…

It’s done and I’ve practiced opening and pulling on the Life Hammer to remove it and I’m really happy with the way it’s turned out

I just hope I never have to use it – ever

*Read this all the way through, and if you’re not sure then just leave it be. I will not guarantee nor can I be held responsible for either damage to your vehicle or persons resulting from you following this guide – understand this is your choice and you are responsible for your own actions

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