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E34 (1989 - 1995)

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Old 11-01-2012, 11:21 AM
beaup16 beaup16 is offline
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Location: Michigan
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 1993 525i
Unhappy Big Mess HELP please!

1993 525i (automatic) If you donít have time for my story and minor problems feel free to skip to the fourth paragraph where my main issue is presented.

This time last year my wife purchased a 1993 525i (automatic) with 200,000 miles. I was never really into the idea of these cars, the cars that I owned were a Saturn and a Chevy Malibu. I donít consider myself a mechanic by any means but I do have a basic understanding of cars and a little common sense (these seem to be somewhat helpful tools in situations like the one Iím about to describe). After driving this car and learning more and more things about it Iíve quickly fallen in love with it and to be honest whatís not to love? Everything about these cars is pure genius. Every little piece of this car has been over engineered and just when you think thereís nothing else they can do to make these cars more efficient the new model comes out and there you have it mind blown. There is one downside to having all these great features and that is when you have a car designed so well the car deserves and requires expert knowledge and experience when being repaired. However in my case my resources (cash) are extremely limited. So last year this car seemed to be in great condition for its age and amount miles. Drove greatly the smoothest car Iíve ever driven to be precise. Over time (about 2 months) we ran into a few issues just basic front end work (tie rods and ball joints). I also noticed that the previous owner had installed an aftermarket radio incorrectly and if you didnít start the car within two days you had a dead battery. I re-wired the radio one problem solved no more dead battery. One day as my wife was on her way home the car seemed to downshift to 1st and wouldnít accelerate above 2500 rpm. My first thought was ďOkay we live in a rural area of a small farm town lots bumps and potholesĒ it has to be a sensor either disconnected or just fried. This Iím okay with be a lot of the time big worries such as transmission issues can be the simplest fix. This issue would be great to fix but is not my present conflict. The biggest issue I have seemed to encounter is that just before last winter I had this car running and driving down the road we had it stored in a garage in the city for the season. Now that I have room in my pole barn/shop Iíve had it towed back due to the fact there is no longer insurance or a license plate on the car. The first thing I do is put the charger on the battery wait an hour come back. I hop in everything is working electrical locks windows lights windshield wipers ( SRS check engine low coolant battery brake low fuel all the lights come on which was expected ). I then turn the key and absolutely nothing. I wait for 6 hours come back still nothing. Now because of the fact that the engine is supposedly rebuilt I understand that the keyless entry could be interfering but I donít think that is the case because it was starting and running way after the engine was replaced or rebuilt. Iíve checked all relays and fuses and wiring everything seems to be in proper order. My plan for this car is to first restore it to excellent driving condition then restore appearance. From there I would either sell it to buy another BMW project or keep it for my son. A family member who happens to be a mechanic has offered me 800 for it the way it is but It would be even better for me to fix it myself. If anyone can offer any advice or solution I would greatly appreciate it.
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Old 11-01-2012, 12:25 PM
Monsignor's Avatar
Monsignor Monsignor is offline
BMW CCA Memeber #445389
Location: Pineapple Under the Sea
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,285
Mein Auto: Sig
Originally Posted by beaup16 View Post
If anyone can offer any advice or solution I would greatly appreciate it.
I'd start here EWS Delete (BMR_LVR would be the contact for this).

Next question that needs answering: How did you check relays and fuses?

When I had a no start, these are the things i checked:
Crankshaft Position Sensor
Fuel Pump
and Fuel Pump relay (which is what it was)

1995 525iA 250k mi
2003 350Z 90k mi FOR SALE
2014 F-150 9k mi

Instagram: @Titan_E34
Snapchat: Titan_E34
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Old 11-01-2012, 12:37 PM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
Location: earth
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,403
Mein Auto: car
The above items listed by the padre will eventually fail on your car. It happens all the time. BMW did not make them to last 20 years. Please get new ones and install them in. Use only OEM stuff. Only skip this if you have reliable evidence that they were done in the past 4 years.

Please download the E34 bentley manual for E34s. Its a great resource and has useful checklists that will help you troubleshoot practically anything.

And unless you or your previous owner have recently changed the thermostat, water pump (composite impeller only), rad cap and bleed screw to new ones, and especially if you cannot afford an unanticipated cooling system meltdown both in terms of time and money, it would be a great idea to replace all that I've mentioned. The wp and thermostat are very common weak points for the car, and the rad cap and bleed screw are too cheap ($15 total) not to purchase.

Don't worry about your current issue. Its not a big deal around 90% of the time.


p.s. btw your paragraphs were missing
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Old 11-01-2012, 07:34 PM
BMR_LVR's Avatar
BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
Humble E34 lover
Location: Asheboro, NC
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,464
Mein Auto: 1992 525i
It's a 93 model so, no EWS.

Other possible differential diagnoses that I can think of are:

- Faulty neutral safety switch (Bentley page 250-3)
- Faulty transmission selector switch/sensor (especially since the car got stuck in first gear previously - Bentley page 250-3)
- Faulty starter relay (Bentley page 610-1)
- Locked up starter
- Faulty ignition switch

I'm sure there are other things to check, I just can't get the old grey matter working at the moment.

I recommend that you check for the fault before throwing parts at it. Find the fault, replace the part, proceed with maintenance as needed.

Hope this helps

Edit: Forgot to mention, either purchase a hard copy of the Bentley manual or search here for a link to where it can be downloaded. Tha amount of information it has will amaze you.
Most problems are usually something simple !

Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 225K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

Last edited by BMR_LVR; 11-01-2012 at 07:39 PM.
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