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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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 08-28-2013, 08:38 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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Maryland safety inspection

So to get my registration I need a safety inspection done. First issue is my local gas station/garage only does it during the week and I'm in class everyday or at work and need my car. So I need to somehow make that work but I also went online to read the list of what the check goes over. It's a 98 540i/6 sport with 163k mi so I'm pretty nervous. It mention proper headlights. I just used a 3m headlight restoration kit and it did almost nothing. They're too far gone and most hazing seems to be on the inside of the lens. It also mentions proper fog lights? I bought my car with one cracked foglight in and removed it. My display always says check fog lights. So am I going to fail miserably? Is it worth paying the money to have it checked knowing I'll fail? I only have 30 days. Will I havw to pay again when I fix it? Money is tight I'm a student everythings going to tuition books and insurance. Advice please!
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  #2  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:14 PM
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lild lild is offline
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no, fog lights won't fail you. and don't worry about the headlights. as long as you don't have a check engine light on you should be fine. and fog lights are optional. if they fail you for the head lights. find a body shop that can sand and buff them for you.

and if your worried about the foglights. take the other one out, and to get the light to go off on the dash all you need is a bulb plug in the sockets the day you get inspected
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Last edited by lild; 08-28-2013 at 09:16 PM.
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  #3  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:15 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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Thanks I appreciate it! I sand and buffed myself everything must be on the inside.
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  #4  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:17 PM
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lild lild is offline
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a body shop can use a more aggressive sand paper. and you can always buy a newer style of lights off fleebay for around 150 or so.
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  #5  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:19 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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I was thinking about that but was told the stocks are better than anything aftermarket I can find.
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  #6  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:24 PM
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lild lild is offline
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not true. I had a 98 with a set I got off fleebay, with the ccfl halo's, they are very bright, and you can get a hid kit to add on, and right now brighter then what you have. and the factory ones cost a lot more.
heres a pic of the set I had. it's not that clear, but I was happy with those lights.
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Last edited by lild; 08-28-2013 at 09:25 PM.
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  #7  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:59 PM
RoddyVictory RoddyVictory is offline
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I'm in new york and mine failed because of the inner part of my tire is bald. I refuse to buy new tires until I finish my suspension refresh. Good thing we don't have to pay if we fail.
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  #8  
Old 08-29-2013, 06:02 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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Where can I get a bulb plug? I only have the one original foglight
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  #9  
Old 08-29-2013, 06:27 AM
murderedBMW murderedBMW is offline
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im so happy they don't do inspections in Minnesota
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  #10  
Old 08-29-2013, 07:26 AM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
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A fog lamp will fail you... If the lamp is on the car it has to be operational...

remove both fog lamps... If they are not there, you cant fail.

Fogged head lights... Dont worry about it..

Youll fail for something else though
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  #11  
Old 08-29-2013, 07:30 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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They've both been removed but it warns you of them when you turn the car on and off. What do you mean I'll fail for something else?
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  #12  
Old 08-29-2013, 09:31 AM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
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meaning Im sure theres something else..

tires brakes.. suspension.. chip in the critical zone of the windsheild... Depending on who is and how they inspect it... If they want to nit-pick... you will fail..

I have seen brand new cars I mean on the lot still brand new be able to be failed..

Just make sure your safty stuff is good. Report back after you go
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  #13  
Old 08-30-2013, 11:22 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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$1500 window needs to be replaced instrument cluster needs to be replaced for odometer not being fully lit up and suspension has some issues.
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  #14  
Old 08-30-2013, 08:50 PM
ProRail ProRail is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOOBEAR View Post
$1500 window needs to be replaced instrument cluster needs to be replaced for odometer not being fully lit up and suspension has some issues.
Yep. MD wants everything to work right, and they fine the hell out of you if you don't meet the standards. Generally much cheaper to fix it the first time.
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  #15  
Old 08-30-2013, 08:53 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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Anybody know where in the Baltimore area I should have this done? Odometer can't be read so I need a new instrument cluster, Front sway bar links, front struts, and full new windshield. And then brake pads, rotors and sensors soon it says.
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  #16  
Old 08-31-2013, 05:43 AM
timarnold timarnold is offline
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Is the problem with your instrument cluster the pixels in the readout for mileage and information display or is it the orange illumination?
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  #17  
Old 08-31-2013, 05:49 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timarnold View Post
Is the problem with your instrument cluster the pixels in the readout for mileage and information display or is it the orange illumination?
Yes sir! I need to have it removed by a professional and shipped to a repair company? My friend also has a ruined windshield we're going to get them done as a package deal I hope. This all should be <$1,500 right?
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  #18  
Old 08-31-2013, 04:38 PM
Et Cetera Et Cetera is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BOOBEAR View Post
Will I have to pay again when I fix it?
We go by a chart in the inspection manual. There is no charge for visual checks like lights, windshield, etc. If it has to be racked up to check suspension parts it might be 20 - 40 time units to check and make sure it was repaired properly. They may not charge you though, if they're being nice about it.

Edit: If they do the work, obviously there will be no charge to re-inspect for MSI.

Last edited by Et Cetera; 08-31-2013 at 04:39 PM. Reason: Info added
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  #19  
Old 08-31-2013, 04:42 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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He can't do the work so I'm taking it elsewhere as long as it's <1k mi and 30 days I won't be charged again. I need quotes for what the work will be at other garages however.
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  #20  
Old 08-31-2013, 05:16 PM
Max_VQ Max_VQ is offline
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If you are a student and money is tight, a 540 may not be your best choice. Many of us spend $1,000 or more every year keeping our E39 running well.
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  #21  
Old 09-01-2013, 04:39 PM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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I'm thinking about sending my instrument cluster to vdorepair.com to have it fixed since the odometer must be readable to pass inspection. Does anybody know anything about the company? I don't want to send $300 and half my dash to them and never hear back.
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  #22  
Old 09-01-2013, 07:46 PM
timarnold timarnold is offline
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This should be everything you need to know about pixel repair: http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...ighlight=pixel
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  #23  
Old 09-04-2013, 09:44 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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The garage quoted $1,400 for the front struts and links. Should I just put a totally new 2013 eibach or bilstein suspension in if I'm paying that much for half a crappy suspension?
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  #24  
Old 09-04-2013, 09:56 AM
timarnold timarnold is offline
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I agree with your approach, but you may want to avoid Bilstein. There have been a number of reported problems with them developing a low speed Klunk, (myself included). There has not been any definitive evidence that this problem, which seems to be only on E39s has been solved.
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  #25  
Old 09-04-2013, 09:58 AM
BOOBEAR BOOBEAR is offline
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So I should go eibach? How does the front struts and sway links ring up 1.4k? That's what a full set of coilovers should be. I'm waiting for a quote from the garage on what it would be for a whole new suspension. Is it because the stock springs in the 540i/6 are dropped 3/4in?
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