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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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  #1  
Old 04-21-2013, 01:30 PM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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Mein Auto: 2003 540i 6-spd
Trunk release button above license plate not working

I have searched countless threads and have not found a solve for this outside of one potential cause which I do not believe is the case in my situation...

I am able to open my trunk lid with the button on the remote and with the button inside the car. However the button above the license plate does not work at all... no response at all.

One of the causes that was discussed in many threads here is the wires getting frayed from the trunk to the inside of the car however in my case the wires are tightly taped together and concealed within the black flexible rubber so I do not believe that I would have a frayed or cut wire in there.

What else could it be?
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  #2  
Old 04-21-2013, 01:33 PM
edjack edjack is offline
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The rubber boot that seals the opening (where your fingers go) gets flaccid over time and prevents the microswitch from closing.

Just replace it.
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  #3  
Old 04-21-2013, 01:54 PM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edjack View Post
The rubber boot that seals the opening (where your fingers go) gets flaccid over time and prevents the microswitch from closing.

Just replace it.
When I depress the switch I can hear the clicking in the switch itself quite clearly... if that rubber diaphragm was flaccid it wouldn't make a solid enough connection with the spring behind it ... seems tight to the switch/spring.

Am I understanding it correctly?
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2003 540i/6 black sapphire on black
BBS RG-R, CDV, Dinan Exhaust, Dinan RSB, Dinan RSTB, Dinan SSK, Dinan FSTB, Dinan CAI, Dinan TB, Dinan MAF, Dinan stage 4 software
BMW 13th gen ULF Bluetooth, BMW Sirius, Dice Silverline iPod
Dynocom numbers: 320HP, 420LB.FT TQ (crank)
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  #4  
Old 04-21-2013, 03:10 PM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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I took the switch itself off and there does not appear to be any visible signs of frayed wiring... all seems to be connected. Could the switch itself be faulty? Is there a way to test it independently?
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2003 540i/6 black sapphire on black
BBS RG-R, CDV, Dinan Exhaust, Dinan RSB, Dinan RSTB, Dinan SSK, Dinan FSTB, Dinan CAI, Dinan TB, Dinan MAF, Dinan stage 4 software
BMW 13th gen ULF Bluetooth, BMW Sirius, Dice Silverline iPod
Dynocom numbers: 320HP, 420LB.FT TQ (crank)
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  #5  
Old 04-21-2013, 03:29 PM
edjack edjack is offline
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That, and a failed actuator, are the only experiences I've had with the trunk latch.

Put an ohmmeter across the cable connections to see if the switch works.
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  #6  
Old 04-21-2013, 05:54 PM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edjack View Post
That, and a failed actuator, are the only experiences I've had with the trunk latch.

Put an ohmmeter across the cable connections to see if the switch works.
To clarify, I would unplug the trunk switch and then test the cable harness end for voltage? If I get a voltage reading then the switch is at fault... but if I do not get a reading then its something past on the wiring end?
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2003 540i/6 black sapphire on black
BBS RG-R, CDV, Dinan Exhaust, Dinan RSB, Dinan RSTB, Dinan SSK, Dinan FSTB, Dinan CAI, Dinan TB, Dinan MAF, Dinan stage 4 software
BMW 13th gen ULF Bluetooth, BMW Sirius, Dice Silverline iPod
Dynocom numbers: 320HP, 420LB.FT TQ (crank)
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  #7  
Old 04-21-2013, 08:30 PM
JUBMW JUBMW is offline
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Make sure your doors are all unlock and just push (not hold) that button and see what happens. For that button release to work you have to make sure all doors are unlock and not just the drivers door.
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  #8  
Old 04-21-2013, 08:32 PM
JUBMW JUBMW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedemn View Post
When I depress the switch I can hear the clicking in the switch itself quite clearly... if that rubber diaphragm was flaccid it wouldn't make a solid enough connection with the spring behind it ... seems tight to the switch/spring.

Am I understanding it correctly?
Never mind what I said
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  #9  
Old 04-21-2013, 09:39 PM
edjack edjack is offline
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No. Disconnect the cable between the switch and the body harness. Then use an ohmmeter to check for continuity.
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  #10  
Old 04-22-2013, 12:38 PM
mbell666 mbell666 is offline
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Mein Auto: e39 2002 540i6
I thought mine was faulty but then released it was me that was "broken"...

If you have your remote key set for two presses to unlock all doors, the trunk will only be unlocked on the second press of the key with all the the rest of the doors. So unless you unlock the car fully (two presses) the trunk will not open from the trunk switch/button but will from the key or internal release.

Your probably well aware of this and I don't mean to insult your intelligence but wanted to make certain you aware of this before starting to poke and prod the car with a multi-meter.
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  #11  
Old 04-28-2013, 10:44 AM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbell666 View Post
I thought mine was faulty but then released it was me that was "broken"...

If you have your remote key set for two presses to unlock all doors, the trunk will only be unlocked on the second press of the key with all the the rest of the doors. So unless you unlock the car fully (two presses) the trunk will not open from the trunk switch/button but will from the key or internal release.

Your probably well aware of this and I don't mean to insult your intelligence but wanted to make certain you aware of this before starting to poke and prod the car with a multi-meter.
No worries... yes I got that...

I believe it is the switch... didn't have a chance to check with an ohmmeter yet but will be going to the dealer for another issue and they will look at this while its in there...

I will report back on what the root cause was!
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2003 540i/6 black sapphire on black
BBS RG-R, CDV, Dinan Exhaust, Dinan RSB, Dinan RSTB, Dinan SSK, Dinan FSTB, Dinan CAI, Dinan TB, Dinan MAF, Dinan stage 4 software
BMW 13th gen ULF Bluetooth, BMW Sirius, Dice Silverline iPod
Dynocom numbers: 320HP, 420LB.FT TQ (crank)
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  #12  
Old 04-28-2013, 10:17 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedemn View Post
I will report back on what the root cause was!
While you're there, please snap a photo of your trunk wiring loom and post to this thread:
- How to diagnose & repair cracked, broken, or frayed BMW trunk loom wires causing all sorts of strange mischief (1)
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Each repair should invariably add to our knowledge base by the process of inexorable incrementalism.
Your job, in return, is to read the suggested threads, where the best people will always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #13  
Old 07-08-2013, 07:57 PM
speedemn speedemn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
While you're there, please snap a photo of your trunk wiring loom and post to this thread:
- How to diagnose & repair cracked, broken, or frayed BMW trunk loom wires causing all sorts of strange mischief (1)
The wiring loom is tightly packed and completely concealed by the black rubber sheath. I would have to nearly rip it open to get a good shot.

After some intensive root cause analysis the conclusion is that the fault is SOMEWHERE along the wiring path but any further troubleshooting involves exposing all the wiring and taking panels and parts off... not even sure if I Should attempt this or where to start if I do!
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2003 540i/6 black sapphire on black
BBS RG-R, CDV, Dinan Exhaust, Dinan RSB, Dinan RSTB, Dinan SSK, Dinan FSTB, Dinan CAI, Dinan TB, Dinan MAF, Dinan stage 4 software
BMW 13th gen ULF Bluetooth, BMW Sirius, Dice Silverline iPod
Dynocom numbers: 320HP, 420LB.FT TQ (crank)
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  #14  
Old 07-08-2013, 08:38 PM
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rrtec rrtec is offline
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Same issue... I am wanting to fix it.. too much other stuff first..
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