2002 Z3: radio code not working

Hi Folks,
I took my 2002 Z3 to the dealership service station for a battery change and they returned the car with the radio stuck at "Code Wait"
mode. The service representative also gave me the radio code along with all the instructions et al.
This code does not work at all. I took the car back to the dealership and they tried again and informed me that my radio(BMW branded Alpine system) is "shorted" and it will have to be replaced (which will cost me $800 bucks...not covered by warranty).
Strangely enough, the CD player lets me insert and eject CDs.... does it mean that the radio is actually operational and the service center folks have fed me some BS?
Has anybody faced such a situation and how did you get it fixed?
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Maybe it's just me, but if they broke - they should fix it.

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Why are you paying for it when they "broke" it. You should complain.They should have reset it as well as giving you the code and instructions.

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generics2k wrote:

Big snip..

The radio will lock itself out once you have entered the code wrongly I believe 5 times. You must then leave the radio on for X hours before it will let you enter the code again.
If this is a CD43 (sounds like it) it is VERY likely they gave you the WRONG code. The CD43 radio was NOT made by Alpine - it was made by Blaupunkt (the CD43 was the only one installed in Z3's in the US that takes CDs)
The SN's unfortunately crossed over between the Alpines and the Blau's.. and if he gave you the Alpine SN - you can enter it until the day you die and the radio will not recognize it.
I'd suggest going back to the dealer once again, and try to locate someone intelligent. This may be difficult, but scan the service area, and perhaps the parts department (I've usually found the parts guys are much more knowledgeable than the Service Representative [glorified order clerks]). The code lookup table WILL have two entries for the serial number, one for Alpine (C33) and one for the Blau (CD43.)
Get the code for that SN for a BLAUPUNKT, then bet the Service Adviser $100 that you can get the "shorted" radio to work.
Let me know how it works out and I'll tell you where to send my half of the $100 to..
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Thanks for your very insightful response.
I had indeed bypassed the service advisor and gone to the part management guy who pulled up the codes from all the three manufacturers and the Alpine one was the only one that provided a radio code:
Radio Type Radio Serial# Radio Code Alpine xxxxxxx yyyyy Pioneer xxxxxxx Not Found Blaupunkt xxxxxxx Not Found
Further, the way they collected the serial number was by "switching the radio off .. switch it on and within 10 sec ...keep the mode button pressed.... this displayed the serial numer on the radio screen".....
Should I insist that they pull out the radio and read it off the back? My radio has "AM/FM/CD" (no tape). Is there a way to distinguish between CD33 or CD43?
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generics2k wrote:

No problem. BTDT.

Worth checking that they collected the correct SN by doing this yourself... there may also be an option for country - I seem to remember that selecting Japan turns it on with no code, but the AM band is different and won't work.

The C33 was cassette tape.
My friend in parts had to do some digging to get the correct Blaupunkt code for my CD43 - but the SN showing on the display should match the one on the back (top actually) of the unit. Worth pulling it out anyway since a former owner may have written the CODE on the top (or side..)
It's two allen screws under the little flaps on each side of the front. These aren't the wacky 5 sided anti-theft allens if it is a CD43 - BMW finally figured out those really didn't work... it should be standard metric allen sized.
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Try to leave the radio on for 1 hour before putting in the code. The radio will lock out if you attempt to incorrectly enter the code 3 times.
Just leave the car in the on position and the radio on, displaying "code wait" for 1 hr. then use the 1 to 6 buttons to enter the code.
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