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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 01-24-2014, 02:58 PM
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musa musa is offline
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Location: Bellevue, WA
 
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Mein Auto: 528ia, X5 4.4 sports
Bloody alternator died

Been having sluggish startups in the mornings last couple of weeks and then the alternator died on me two days back. It's the original at 181K miles. Battery light is on and confirmed battery is ok. I bought a replacement from starterpros for $212 with lifetime warranty. It should arrive early next week.
http://www.starterpros.com/1997-BMW-...lternator.html

I'm prepping the car over the weekend. Any recommendations while in there other than replacing the belts? The pulleys are ok- no noises.
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Last edited by musa; 01-24-2014 at 03:00 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-24-2014, 03:05 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
Location: Under the lift arms
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
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Mein Auto: E39 540, E36 328is, E83x3
did you try to wake it up?
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  #3  
Old 01-24-2014, 07:03 PM
helpmyfive helpmyfive is offline
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How is your oil filter housing seal? With all that junk out of the way, I'd consider swapping it. How is your CCV? The Alt is a fairly quick procedure. Good luck.
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  #4  
Old 01-25-2014, 01:54 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Common questions which need to be answered BEFORE you do an alternator and/or drive belt system overhaul:
- 1st: Physically, determine what type of tensioners you have (1)
- 2nd: Physically, determine exactly what alternator you have (1)
- 3rd: Determine which parts you need to buy for a complete drive belt system overhaul (1)
- 4th: Do the alternator and drive belt system DIY (belts, tensioners, pulleys, rollers, alternator) (1)

Alternator and Belt Drive DIYs:
- Removal instructions for the alternator & drive belt system of a 2002 525i
- Removal instructions for the fan shroud of a 2002 525i
- Alternator and Belt Drive DIY (1) (2)
- How to tell if you have spring-drive or hydraulic belt tensioners or both (1)
- How to diagnose noises coming from the drive belt system (1)
- One users' example of total electrical failure (AAA towed away) alternator repair (1) (2)
- Video of cold idle engine squeal (1)
- Recommended parts list for a complete belt drive system overhaul (1)
- How to make your own BMW special cooling & belt drive system counterhold tools (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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  #5  
Old 01-26-2014, 10:24 AM
EconoBox EconoBox is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 530i (E39) 120k
My car was on the 3rd alternator by 125k.
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  #6  
Old 01-26-2014, 11:28 AM
scott740il scott740il is offline
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Mein Auto: 1999 540iT Wagon
i just replaced mine last week. 128K here.
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  #7  
Old 01-26-2014, 10:35 PM
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musa musa is offline
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Mein Auto: 528ia, X5 4.4 sports
The fan clutch and blade are original too. Am I playing with fire not to replace them sooner rather than later? Just musing.....
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Old 01-27-2014, 04:53 AM
KKlop KKlop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by helpmyfive View Post
How is your oil filter housing seal? With all that junk out of the way, I'd consider swapping it. How is your CCV? The Alt is a fairly quick procedure. Good luck.
Same for your vanos oil hose.
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Old 01-27-2014, 08:20 AM
kylesteezedknox kylesteezedknox is offline
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Location: Royal Oak, MI
 
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Mein Auto: 1997 528i bmw
on my 528i I just replaced the alternator the battery went with it to, the ventilation system on the alternator for 5 series is kinda wack it sucks up leaves I even found a actual dead bee in the points of the alternator smh -_- the points were all corroded
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  #10  
Old 01-28-2014, 10:23 PM
overwerked1 overwerked1 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2003 540i
mine took a dump recently also - of course a week after waterpump was replaced.. hindsight was 20/20. however, $260 part + install from a friend - no complaints!
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