Newbie please help!!! E39 vibrating issue - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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Old 11-18-2010, 07:12 PM
zyona007 zyona007 is offline
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Unhappy Newbie please help!!! E39 vibrating issue

I have a 1999 528 i.. had it checked out by a mechanic prior to purchasing it and he advise me it only needed a oil change, replacement valve cover gasket and 02 sensor. I had him do the oil change and replaced the valve cover gasket, I didnt chge the 02 sensor. This was in March. A few days after this service the car starts vibrating and the check engine light came on..he said it was an ignition coil and changed it..another week went by and same issue..i changed another coil. I decided to stop using that mechanic when right after that the a/c belt bust and i had to chged radiator, water pump etc. about a month ago the vibrating returns on and off with the check engine light constantly on..I decided to take it to the dealer..they found i needed a valve cover gasket..and a oil filter housing could i need a valve cover gasket again when i chged it 8 months ago???? They said this is the reason the car is vibrating???
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Old 11-18-2010, 08:17 PM
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bmw_n00b13 bmw_n00b13 is offline
Freude am Fahren
Location: Cambridge, ON
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Get a second opinion from a qualified independent BMW mechanic.

Is the vibration when the car is cold (

Why do the expensive job and skimp on the 15 min+$100 part job?!!

Coolling and belt systems on the e39 are known to fail. A full overhaul at 80-100k miles is STRONGLY recommended.
'99 528i ('98/12 build). 282,000km BY29428/Royalrot
Breaking My Wallet since 2009
Mods: Stoptech SS brake hose, 280piece toolkit resting on trunk floor, Beisan VANOS seals, increasing amounts of duct tape and glue
'99 540i (grandfather's)

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Old 11-19-2010, 09:04 AM
zyona007 zyona007 is offline
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Thanks..the BMW dealer says it the valve cover gasket do need to be changed but not the 02 sensor..also 2 ignition coils needs to be replaced..
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Old 11-19-2010, 09:10 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Does car vibrate when idling or on highway?
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Old 11-19-2010, 01:45 PM
Rjim Rjim is offline
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The vibration you're describing sounds like a misfire on one or more cylinders. You need to get the codes read to determine what triggered the SES light. If #1 was misfiring for example, the coil from #1 and a different cylinder can be swapped. Then the next time you get an SES light, have the codes read again to determine if the misfire (if that's what it was) follows the coil to the other cylinder. I would try that before buying new coils. Also in the case of misfires, they will often go away if the engine is shutdown, then restarted.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:04 PM
zyona007 zyona007 is offline
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This is what the emailed me 2day
__________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _______________________

The coils that you need today (which come up on a diagnosis report) are #5 & #3. It is not uncommon when one coil fails for the others to start failing too. We normally recommend all 6 when 1 fails. Steven said that the coils in the car now do not appear to be the new, updated style coils that are normally used when replacing the old style which is what you have in the car now. Are you sure that it was coils that the shop said they replaced?

To answer your 2nd question, the check engine light was your original issue. Last weekend the fault that came up was for lean mixture because the valve cover gasket was leaking so bad that it was sucking in air. The faults for the ignition coils that we have today were not there last weekend making this a different issue. It is a separate issue, that causes the same light to come on. There are dozens of things that can fail on a car causing the check engine light to come on. That is why we have diagnostic equipment that we use when diagnosing. If the coils were bad last week they would've come up on the report and Steven would've noticed it before he put your car into the carwash as he has to road test the car a couple of miles once repairs are finished.

If he replaces the coils today, clears the check engine light, and successfully road tests the car with no drivability issue or the check engine light coming back on with the same fault, we consider the car repaired. If the check engine light comes on again later that day or next week or next month we would have to re-run the diagnostic faults again to see what part would THEN be causing the light to come on and most likely would not be related. Again, there are dozens of things that can fail and cause the light to come on. There is no way we can predict something shorting like an ignition coil when there is no diagnostic fault present when the car is in the shop.
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Old 11-19-2010, 02:53 PM
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TemporarySanity TemporarySanity is offline
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It sounds like they are being truthful to me. Everything they say makes sense to and doesn't sound like they are trying to pull one over on you.

I discovered I scream the same way whether I'm about to be eaten by a great white shark or if a piece of seaweed touches my foot.
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