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5 Series DIY
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  #576  
Old 10-06-2010, 08:56 AM
BmanRRT BmanRRT is offline
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Location: Phoenix
 
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Mein Auto: 2000 x5 4.4L
Great Idea I think, I joined both groups
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  #577  
Old 10-06-2010, 06:13 PM
UsedBits UsedBits is offline
BMW CCA Member #: 444067
Location: Central Arkansas
 
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Posts: 265
Mein Auto: 2002 540iA with sport pkg
Both clusters fixed!

I am pleased to report that BMW NA offered to replace both displays with missing pixels. It paid 100% of the parts, I paid 100% of the labor.

The 'catch' is that the job is to replace the entire dash unit as well as the center console device, costing about $270 in labor. The fix is *not* to simply replace the malfunctioning displays.

The unexpected benefit is that the speedometer is now more accurate than before.

As expected, as in as soon as I got it home a new problem presents itself, the 'Check Tail Lights' error message began to appear upon shutting down the car.

And, just today, the 'Low Coolant' error message appeared - now for the 2nd time. I guess I have the slow radiator leak problem.
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  #578  
Old 10-20-2010, 06:48 AM
DNSinSC DNSinSC is offline
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Location: SC
 
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Mein Auto: 530i
2002 530i. I called the 800 number and gave them the information and to sum it all up they said they would pay 25% of the parts and labor. At the local dealership the instrument cluster is $579 and the labor they could not tell me yet...
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  #579  
Old 10-20-2010, 07:24 AM
pdoctors pdoctors is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 x5 3.0
That's great to hear, as they are taking some responsibility, but the fact of the matter is the design is fundamentally flawed and they should be doing it for free. Please sign up on the facebook link.
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  #580  
Old 10-20-2010, 02:36 PM
BmanRRT BmanRRT is offline
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Mein Auto: 2000 x5 4.4L
Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSinSC View Post
2002 530i. I called the 800 number and gave them the information and to sum it all up they said they would pay 25% of the parts and labor. At the local dealership the instrument cluster is $579 and the labor they could not tell me yet...
what phone # did you call? I have sent 3 emails and have not gotten a responce yet.
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  #581  
Old 10-20-2010, 03:21 PM
DNSinSC DNSinSC is offline
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Location: SC
 
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1-800-831-1117 is the number for BMW North America. They followed through pretty quick. I had to fax them a copy of the current registration. After 3 days they called back and said they would pay 25% of the parts and labor. That still leaves us over with over $600 so we are just going to forget it I guess. I can paste 6 X $100 bills over the instrument cluster and heck, it would look great
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  #582  
Old 11-01-2010, 10:33 AM
t3nd3r t3nd3r is offline
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Mein Auto: 1998 540i (E39)
BMWNA instrument cluster replacement

I have a 1998 540i and the pixels are pretty bad, can't really read how many miles or the temp etc... I called them and they told me they would cover 50% of the parts and 0% of labor so after I spoke with a service advisor I would end up spending over 700 to fix it. So, gonna give it a miss and start speeding up my search for my 2003 M5.
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  #583  
Old 11-01-2010, 01:59 PM
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540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by t3nd3r View Post
I have a 1998 540i and the pixels are pretty bad, can't really read how many miles or the temp etc... I called them and they told me they would cover 50% of the parts and 0% of labor so after I spoke with a service advisor I would end up spending over 700 to fix it. So, gonna give it a miss and start speeding up my search for my 2003 M5.
That doesn't make sense. I had the same offer and it came to about $450 at BMW Seattle.
Worse case, go to www.vdorepair.com and you can get it done for $299 plus shipping. It is very easy to remove and install the cluster, and they provide full instructions on their website.
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  #584  
Old 11-01-2010, 02:15 PM
t3nd3r t3nd3r is offline
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Mein Auto: 1998 540i (E39)
Quote:
Originally Posted by 540 M-Sport View Post
That doesn't make sense. I had the same offer and it came to about $450 at BMW Seattle.
Worse case, go to www.vdorepair.com and you can get it done for $299 plus shipping. It is very easy to remove and install the cluster, and they provide full instructions on their website.
Yeah I know, didn't sound right considering all the prices I saw on this thread but that's what the service advisor was quoting. That was BMW Concord, CA. maybe he was just estimating extremely high. You know what is funny, I was out of the country for about a month last year and when I came back and got the car out and running the display was perfect for like 2 days then everything faded back to the state it is now. Seems like I should be able to do something to fix that other than replacing the whole pixel cable. Either way, I want to spend that money on something more useful for this car.
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  #585  
Old 11-01-2010, 03:30 PM
pdoctors pdoctors is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 x5 3.0
does nobody care that BMW is putting out bad engineering....a display shouldn't do this....there should be recall on this.
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  #586  
Old 11-02-2010, 10:12 PM
BmanRRT BmanRRT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdoctors View Post
does nobody care that BMW is putting out bad engineering....a display shouldn't do this....there should be recall on this.
we care, we are outragede also, thats why we got the facebook registry to sign up for a class action suite.
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  #587  
Old 05-19-2011, 08:14 AM
BeemerGuy BeemerGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540 M-Sport View Post
Worse case, go to www.vdorepair.com and you can get it done for $299 plus shipping. It is very easy to remove and install the cluster, and they provide full instructions on their website.
Best case, use VDORepair. They did mine for me, quick turnaround, excellent work, and unlike the BMW replacement which will fail just like it did before, they offer a lifetime warranty.
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  #588  
Old 06-29-2011, 02:12 AM
bimmerZ5 bimmerZ5 is offline
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Mein Auto: Z3 3.0i Rdstr, E39 530i
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeemerGuy View Post
Best case, use VDORepair. They did mine for me, quick turnaround, excellent work, and unlike the BMW replacement which will fail just like it did before, they offer a lifetime warranty.
it's a lifetime warranty now? how much did the repair cost?
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  #589  
Old 06-29-2011, 07:58 AM
BmanRRT BmanRRT is offline
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VDO is my worst case. But BMW should fix them for free. It's a defective design not a part that wears out
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  #590  
Old 07-14-2011, 10:33 AM
MauiBoy MauiBoy is offline
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Angry My experience with the dash pixels issue

Thought I'd update this thread with my experience here in Dallas, TX USA. I called BMW NA, and they assigned a customer service person to my case. After speaking a couple of times, she asked me if I was the original owner and whether I had purchased the car from a BMW dealership or not (I am not and did not). In the end, BMW NA offered to pay 25% of the parts cost of the repair (0% of the labor).

After calling the 2 BMW dealerships near me (Classic BMW and BMW of Dallas), both quoted me a repair cost of over $1200 in parts and nearly $500 in labor! That's ridiculous! I can remove and replace the dash in less than 5 minutes. So, in the end, BMW offered to let me pay over $1400 to replace the instrument panel with a refurbished part. Ridiculous.

Guess I'll be contacting VDORepair.

I was hoping that moving up from my two 3 Series of the past to a 540i would mean better customer service and a higher-quality car. Boy, have I been disappointed...
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  #591  
Old 07-27-2011, 10:19 AM
markg540i markg540i is offline
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Location: La Verne CA
 
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Mein Auto: 2000 540i
Pixel tape

Can this be done DIY? If I have the tape.
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  #592  
Old 07-27-2011, 10:28 AM
bimmerZ5 bimmerZ5 is offline
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Mein Auto: Z3 3.0i Rdstr, E39 530i
Quote:
Originally Posted by markg540i View Post
Can this be done DIY? If I have the tape.
yes, it can be DIY, but it's not necessarily easy. There are two methods to taking apart the gauge cluster, one has a risk of damaging the motors that control the needles and the other method requires drilling holes. I helped a friend with his X5 that had the same pixel issue and we were able to fix about 95% of the problem... for some reason, 3 lines of pixels still didn't come back. We might try again, but we did not use a new ribbon cable.

Based on what I saw taking apart the gauge cluster, the problem is the adhesive used to hold the ribbon tape to the PCB board; it melts over time and smears over the electrical contacts. that's why some people have reported some success with contact cleaner and not even bothering to take it apart (it must dissolve some of the adhesive). i even have a theory that cars in cold climates probably are less likely to develop this issue than cars in hot climates, where the adhesive is getting melted a lot more.

If you do try to DIY, you'll need a T9 *AND* T10 torx long shaft screw driver. You'll read a lot of things online saying you only need T10, but I think that's a mistake. The 4 screws you'll need to reach at the end are T9.
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  #593  
Old 08-07-2011, 10:21 PM
smooth_pilot smooth_pilot is offline
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Location: Seattle, WA
 
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Mein Auto: 540i Sport
Best repair provider?

I have had recommendations on two display repair providers: VDO Repair and BBA Reman. What sort of experience have any of you had from either of these providers. It has gotten to the point that I can't read anything on the Check Control display.
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  #594  
Old 09-21-2011, 12:04 PM
dnjgeary dnjgeary is offline
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Location: Camarillo CA
 
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Mein Auto: 2003 540iT
VDO repair

I recommend VDO repair, especially if you live in Southern California. This kind of work is all they do. I had mine done there just yesterday. They have a special rate of $250 for locals, the work is done in Huntington Beach, in 2 hours, while you wait. When its done they run the diagnostics for you to show that everything works perfectly again, and you are on your way. There were 8 or 10 units there shipped from shops all over waiting to be done while I was there.

Initially I had called BMW about this. They asked me all the questions previous posts inicated they would, and then I didn't hear a thing from them. I called again once more, but never heard from BMW again. Since my 2003 had 99000 miles on it, I decided I was going to get at most 25% off a BMW price, so I didn't persist with BMW. Even my local independent shop wanted $850!

I'm not mechanically inclined and have never done any substantive auto work. But taking the instrument cluster out is not hard. There are some directions and photos on vdorepair's website, and a better clip showing the process on YouTube. You just need a #10 Torx and a Phillips screwdriver - that's it. Disconnect the battery first and you'll have it out in 10 minutes. My only problem was I couldn't get the electrical connection to come out of the back of the instrument panel dimming switch, so I just left it connected and rotated the face plate 180 degrees to the left to get it out of the way. Really if I could do it anyone can. So I recommend you take it out yourself and send it off to vdo repair.

Dave G.
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  #595  
Old 09-29-2011, 11:36 AM
2nd3series 2nd3series is offline
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Location: Dallas
 
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Mein Auto: 540i
I also have moved from a 3 series E30 and now an E46 upto an E39.
In the past, BMW NA combined w/ BMW Car Club of America have helped resolve big ticket items such as the instrument cluster pixel issue..
I called BMW NA today and they wanted proof of ownership, which I had to fax to them ???? Does anyone fax anymore ?
In any event based on past postings, even my legacy of owning BMWs since 1988 and an active CCA member may not help ..

We shall see..



M
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  #596  
Old 10-04-2011, 02:17 AM
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Fragzem Fragzem is offline
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Mein Auto: 2000 540i/6, 1964 Wildcat
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetpilot10 View Post

> Leonora Vlaovich
> Customer Relations Coordinator
> BMW of North America, LLC
> 201-573-7742 (phone)
> 201-930-8362 (fax)
> Leonora.Vlaovich@bmwna.com
So no one has tried those Phone #'s lately?
Who is the new "Customer Relations Coordinator" ?
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  #597  
Old 04-06-2012, 09:12 AM
Steveoreo Steveoreo is offline
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Location: Georgia
 
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Mein Auto: 540iA
Pixels

Jetpilot

Let's see if it works, I just sent me email in.
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  #598  
Old 04-12-2012, 12:25 PM
KnightofDeeDee KnightofDeeDee is offline
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Mein Auto: 1997 540i/6 2000 X5 4.4i
Proven Pixel Repair Service

I would use German Auto Recycling in SoCal. You can ship the Cluster to them for $209.99 before shipping or the MID for 179.99 before shipping. Turn around is 1 day. They also offer the Cluster Rings in Chrome or Silver for $40 extra. If your local they can cut you a deal if you pay with cash and can fix it in under 1 hour while you wait.
www.GermanAutoRecycling.com
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  #599  
Old 06-13-2012, 07:06 PM
BMWgovernor BMWgovernor is offline
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Location: Miami Beach, Florida
 
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Mein Auto: 2000 BMW 528i M
Gonna use this one myself.... Thanks guys............. My M-Sport will finally get the pixs she deserves!!!
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  #600  
Old 01-12-2013, 10:23 AM
theburdens1 theburdens1 is offline
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Location: Ky
 
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Mein Auto: 2002 525i
Any updated contacts for BMW NA? I have this problem with my 2002 525i I wouldn't mind DIY but what parts will I need?
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