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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 01-15-2013, 02:11 PM
kppeters kppeters is offline
Location: Goshen, IN
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 2001 525i manual wagon
engine/alternator trouble

When my car is idling it drops to nearly stalling unless i rev the engine. Sometimes the engine will stall if I do not catch it in time. On 1/3 of those occasions when the car does stall, it will not restart for anywhere from 1 - 5 minutes. At other times the car runs just fine with no trouble. This trouble does not occur every time I drive the car and does not occur just when the car is cold. It can happen anytime and regardless of the engine temperature. I had the alternator go out two or three years ago. I had it rebuilt for a fraction of the cost of a new one and installed it with no trouble. The car was fine after that until about eight months ago when I finished up an errand, got into the car, drove to a stop sign, and it died. It would not start for nearly fifteen minutes. I went through the summer with no revving trouble, but occasionally the car would just not start. I finally went ahead and bought a new alternator and installed it. The car was fine for a time and then the trouble started with the RPMs dipping so low and the times it would just die. Once it died as I was slowing down to make a turn. I felt my steering wheel tighten up, looked down at my dash, and realized it had died. It started up right away then. My car is a manual transmission and I have owned it for 8 1/2 years. I love the car but I find myself feeling lucky every time it starts and I get home and back safely. I have three children so I do not want to get stranded. About four weeks ago, I started up the car one morning and the engine sounded horrible. Really rough and ragged. After that initial time, the rough sound went away for a week or two. Then it came back and now every time I turn on the engine it sounds bad and I can often hear an odd almost clicking sound (if I am standing outside the car) when the engine is idling. These are just a few of my problems. Any help that you all could give me would be great. I have other issues with the car but I can go into those at a different time.
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