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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 02-13-2008, 11:28 AM
adsathe adsathe is offline
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Location: Portland, OR, USA
 
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Mein Auto: 2002, BMW 325i
2002 BMW 325i starting trouble

My trusty black beauty, 2002 325i died over the weekend.

It started without a problem on Saturday morning, but refused to start later in the evening. I was able to jump start it and drove it around for half hour. It was starting OK after getting back.

Come Monday morning, and the car was dead again. I was unable to jump start it this time. I initially suspected that this was a battery problem. But now it looks like a potential starter/solenoid problem. The battery seems fine, because the lights come on when I turn the key, but all I hear is a click, which is followed by a humming sound for 20 sec and then it stops.

1) Any recommendations for reliable _BMW mechanics_ in the Portland (Oregon, USA) area (apart from the Kuni/Rassmussen “stealerships”)? (My Japanese car mechanic refuses to touch this car)

2) Any do-it-yourself ideas, before I get it towed to the dealer?

3) Is it worth trying a new battery from autozone (94-DL) before taking the car to the dealer?

Thanks!
-A
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  #2  
Old 02-13-2008, 11:44 AM
sierrakilo99 sierrakilo99 is offline
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Yeah, I'd try replacing the battery first... sounds like the most likely culprit.
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  #3  
Old 02-13-2008, 02:24 PM
rowengartner3 rowengartner3 is offline
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how many miles is on it?
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  #4  
Old 02-13-2008, 03:00 PM
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KrisL KrisL is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adsathe View Post
Come Monday morning, and the car was dead again. I was unable to jump start it this time. I initially suspected that this was a battery problem. But now it looks like a potential starter/solenoid problem. The battery seems fine, because the lights come on when I turn the key, but all I hear is a click, which is followed by a humming sound for 20 sec and then it stops.
Lights require a few amps. Getting the starter to turn requires a LOT of amps. +1 on replace battery first. Autozone 49DL, $70!
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  #5  
Old 02-13-2008, 10:24 PM
mbridges15 mbridges15 is offline
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I had the same problem with 02 325i and it was my alternator. Got my alternator changed and everything was great!
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  #6  
Old 02-14-2008, 08:44 AM
bknuklz14 bknuklz14 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbridges15 View Post
I had the same problem with 02 325i and it was my alternator. Got my alternator changed and everything was great!
same here, but check the battery first
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  #7  
Old 02-14-2008, 07:39 AM
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iskoos iskoos is offline
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Mein Auto: '02 - 325ci
You can buy the 49DL battery from autozone, swap it and if it is definitely not the battery, you can return it for a full refund.
Zero cost to you...
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  #8  
Old 02-14-2008, 01:42 PM
adsathe adsathe is offline
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The problem is I am unable to jump start the car now. That is what got me to suspect the starter/solenoid (not the fact that the lights come on:-)).

But it definitely seems like a good idea to try a new battery first, just to rule it out before debugging further. Someone in my office indicated that a blown fuse could be the culprit. I am going to try that too.

Where are you guys getting 94-DL for $70? :-)
In Oregon, autozone is quoting me $129.99 for 94-DL!

Thanks!
-A
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  #9  
Old 02-14-2008, 01:49 PM
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KrisL KrisL is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adsathe View Post
The problem is I am unable to jump start the car now. That is what got me to suspect the starter/solenoid (not the fact that the lights come on:-)).

But it definitely seems like a good idea to try a new battery first, just to rule it out before debugging further. Someone in my office indicated that a blown fuse could be the culprit. I am going to try that too.

Where are you guys getting 94-DL for $70? :-)
In Oregon, autozone is quoting me $129.99 for 94-DL!

Thanks!
-A

We're not getting the 94DL for $70. We're getting the 49DL, which will fit, for $70. See the wiki for more information.
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  #10  
Old 02-14-2008, 01:50 PM
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v33_n0d3 v33_n0d3 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 325i Sedan
49DL. Not 94DL
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  #11  
Old 02-22-2008, 10:42 AM
Ty Vil Ty Vil is offline
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Are you still having trouble?
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  #12  
Old 02-22-2008, 12:35 PM
toya425 toya425 is offline
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My experience when the starter makes this noise is that there is a bad spot on the armiture of the starter that causes high resistance and the battery is not able to overcome this. If you can get to the starter you can gently tap it with a hammer or something on the side and see if will start. Remember there is a lot of electricity down there so be careful! If it starts then you know it's the starter.
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  #13  
Old 02-23-2008, 04:59 AM
BMW_SSG BMW_SSG is offline
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I had this happen before as well with my '02 325i. Evidently, I am not sure with other makes or models, but with ours there are two brands of alternators. A French one (can not remember the name) and Bosch. The French ones fail all the time. That is what I had, I had the dealership (under warranty) replace it with Bosch. Also few month later my battery went dead. Under warranty I had it replaced too and no issues since. I think I had about 40k miles on it... Hope this helps.
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  #14  
Old 03-17-2011, 08:42 PM
tice03 tice03 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adsathe View Post
unable to jump start... The battery seems fine, because the lights come on when I turn the key, but all I hear is a click, which is followed by a humming sound for 20 sec and then it stops.

This is exactly what happens with my mine (2003 325i, manual). Sometimes it works to jumpstart it, but sometimes it still clicks while trying to jump it. So what has worked, so far, is to put the car in 2nd and rock it forward a little bit, or just turn the key multiple times until it turns over. Usually just clicks for about 5 or 6 tries and then just suddenly turns over with full juice.

So, adsathe, what ended up working for you? After reading all these threads, I'm fairly convinced that my solenoid contacts need to be replaced. But I just need as many second opinions as possible before I get in there. It seems like it's hard to access. Has anybody found an easier way than this? : http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=499230

That looks like a crappy process. There's got to be a more simple way to access it, otherwise, I might just pay to have it done.

Last edited by tice03; 03-17-2011 at 08:43 PM. Reason: spelling
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  #15  
Old 01-21-2013, 07:51 PM
Mirawho Mirawho is offline
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You have probably fixed your problem by now, but, I found that if you purchase a mini-flexhead ratcheting wrench set, the 100mm works for the torx bolts and makes removing the starter a dream. The only thing you need to remove is the vacuum canister below the starter motor, which takes a second.
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  #16  
Old 01-22-2013, 09:35 AM
GoForthFast GoForthFast is offline
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For anyone hooking up with this thread, word is the Autozone 49DL is being discontinued.
Don't get caught off guard.
Can get the 49 series in other places. Someone said Pep Boys, and I've seen it in Sams Club.
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  #17  
Old 01-24-2013, 05:28 PM
Fingrassia Fingrassia is offline
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Location: Houston
 
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Mein Auto: 535i sport package, 325CI
Had a similar problem as described above and ended up being the starter. $700 from an Indy to replace. Just a lesson learned you have to go through all the checks when determining what to replace. It is too expensive to start exchanging parts without having good testing equipment.
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  #18  
Old 03-04-2014, 07:29 PM
whoadoatjr whoadoatjr is offline
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Location: Wichita Ks.
 
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Mein Auto: 2002 Bmw 325xi
I am looking for help on my 2002 325xi, I am starting to believe that it is demon possessed. I was driving home one day and out of nowhere the ABS/Brake light comes on. When I started slowing down the lights went out and the battery light came on but when I stepped back on the gas to speed up again, battery light goes out and ABS/Brake light comes on again. I came to complete stop and battery light comes on again and ABS/Brake lights go out. When leaving the stop light the car seemed to take off in high gear. After getting it home and letting it set overnight battery was dead. Unhooked battery and recharged it and battery stays up while disconnected but when hooked back up it goes dead. Checked alternator and it checks good. For weeks car would start and run fine and after pulling all the fuses for ABS car would drive fine but lights still on and battery would drain over night if hooked up. Decieded to take it to a elect. shop but the day I went to take it there it will no longer start, appears that the fuel pump is not kicking on now.
ANY SUGGESTIONS????????
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  #19  
Old 03-04-2014, 09:27 PM
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iskoos iskoos is offline
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Start a new thread. Posting on a 6-year-old thread won't help much...
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