Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E60 (2004 - 2010)

E60 (2004 - 2010)
BMW 5-Series (E60 chassis) was first seen in the Unites States in the fall of 2003 with a 2004 Model Year designation. The E60 is now available as a 528i, 528xi, 535i, 535xi, 550i and a 535xi sports wagon! -- View the E60 Wiki

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-30-2007, 09:28 PM
TGray5's Avatar
TGray5 TGray5 is offline
Ultimate Driving Machine
Location: So. Calif.
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 2,207
Mein Auto: '13 F10 550i; '13 R1200GS
Stinky AC

After about 20 months of ownership, my 2005 545i has finally started to get a stinky musty AC odor like some of my previous bimmers. Anyone have a good fix? On my M3 there was a DIY for taking apart part of the system under the dash and spraying some stuff in there. Anyone had this fixed under warranty or have a good DIY solution. I've tried on other cars spraying lysol in the HVAC intake, but that only seems to work for a few days, so I'm not sure its worth trying again. TIA for any info.
__________________
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 01-30-2007, 10:05 PM
destro23 destro23 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Dirty Jersey
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 460
Mein Auto: 645 to 530 to 2011 528
sounds like some drain hose somewhere is clogged and causing water to back up an turn to mildew... i'd definatly say warranty work... espically if the dealer can smell what you smell!!... make sure you can reproduce it for them, don't turn on ac for a while and let them get a full blast of mildew air
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-31-2007, 07:18 AM
mason's Avatar
mason mason is offline
Travel Fever
Location: New York, NY
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,706
Mein Auto: 535dx
It is not warranty work. If odor is warranty work, what next? Bread crumbs clean up? All you have to do is to crank up the heat to the highest temperature and have the AC off. Then let it blast for few minutes. These lovely bateria will die. Try to avoid chemical, that's how super bug created, becoming increasingly resistant to any forms of chemical, i.e. medicine.
__________________



MJ14 535dx - Imperial Blue
MJ10 550 GT - Imperial Blue (retired)
MJ07 530i - Silver Grey (Sold)
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-31-2007, 07:51 AM
Alex550 Alex550 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Atlanta
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 100
Mein Auto: 2011 135i
I know exactly what you are talking about, that happened on my 745. It was really bad when the air first came on but then dissipated in a few minutes. Take it to the dealer, they remove the cover and put a 'baking soda' like deodorizer in it, which solves the problem. Due to the high humidity in Atlanta, I would have the dealer do it every time the car was in for service.
__________________

Current: 2013 X5 3.5, 2013 535 M-Sport, 2012 640Cic, and 2011 135 M-Sport

Past: 2010 535 M-Sport, 2010 X5 4.8, 2009 650Cic, 2007 550, 2006 650Cic, 2004 330Cic, and 2004 745
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-31-2007, 11:33 AM
HugH HugH is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Arlington TX
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 847
Mein Auto: 2013 BMW 328i
Quote:
Originally Posted by mason View Post
It is not warranty work. If odor is warranty work, what next? Bread crumbs clean up? All you have to do is to crank up the heat to the highest temperature and have the AC off. Then let it blast for few minutes. These lovely bateria will die. Try to avoid chemical, that's how super bug created, becoming increasingly resistant to any forms of chemical, i.e. medicine.
This problem appears to be an issue. My dealer took care of it under warraty at the first oil change on my 04 E46.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-31-2007, 11:48 AM
mason's Avatar
mason mason is offline
Travel Fever
Location: New York, NY
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,706
Mein Auto: 535dx
Quote:
Originally Posted by HugH View Post
This problem appears to be an issue. My dealer took care of it under warraty at the first oil change on my 04 E46.
I am not saying dealers won't do it for you free of charges. I am only saying it is a typical thing for all vehicles. You don't need to bring to dealers or wait until visiting dealers to address that. My experience on BMW, Honda, Toyota, Lexus......... are the same. I have used the same trick to get rid of the smell. Sometimes it takes a quick as 2 traffic lights.
__________________



MJ14 535dx - Imperial Blue
MJ10 550 GT - Imperial Blue (retired)
MJ07 530i - Silver Grey (Sold)
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-31-2007, 11:51 AM
slvr bullet slvr bullet is offline
Registered User
Location: TEXAS
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 38
Mein Auto: 997 C2S, 2006 X5 4.4
The dealer once gave me this spray to run through my 5 series filters that seemed to clear up the problem.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-31-2007, 12:12 PM
HugH HugH is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Arlington TX
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 847
Mein Auto: 2013 BMW 328i
Quote:
Originally Posted by mason View Post
I am not saying dealers won't do it for you free of charges. I am only saying it is a typical thing for all vehicles. You don't need to bring to dealers or wait until visiting dealers to address that. My experience on BMW, Honda, Toyota, Lexus......... are the same. I have used the same trick to get rid of the smell. Sometimes it takes a quick as 2 traffic lights.
Perhaps I've been lucky with all my cars. Except for my bimmer, the only other car I have experienced this problem with was an '84 Audi 5000, this was in '85. We were on a long trip from TX to Napa Valley and then south across the Mojave desert to the Grand Canyon. Temps were around 115 degrees according to the Audi's outside temp indicator. Suddenly we got this stinky smell, out of nowhere! After our return home, I sprayed inside the air intake with Lysol and tried some other sprays and was never able to get rid of the smell.

I wish I would've known about your remedy then, maybe I would've kept the car longer.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-31-2007, 02:23 PM
destro23 destro23 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Dirty Jersey
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 460
Mein Auto: 645 to 530 to 2011 528
Smelly AC in any new car is not normal something is wrong... for the price you pay you shouldn't have to "deal with it".

Take it back to dealer ship.. tell them it smells bad something is wrong with AC..
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-31-2007, 02:50 PM
mason's Avatar
mason mason is offline
Travel Fever
Location: New York, NY
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,706
Mein Auto: 535dx
Quote:
Originally Posted by destro23 View Post
Smelly AC in any new car is not normal something is wrong... for the price you pay you shouldn't have to "deal with it".

Take it back to dealer ship.. tell them it smells bad something is wrong with AC..
You are getting either too fancy or too complicated here. It is well known. You can probably find this on common auto mechanic webpage.

The smell is typically mildew due to condensation from the AC system.

Of course, if the system smells like something is buring or a dead rat. Yes, bring it to dealership.

Yes, BMW is an highend vehicle but let's not make yourself like a fool because there is mildew smell from the AC.
__________________



MJ14 535dx - Imperial Blue
MJ10 550 GT - Imperial Blue (retired)
MJ07 530i - Silver Grey (Sold)
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 02-01-2007, 03:58 PM
paulwbenn paulwbenn is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Dallas
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 106
Mein Auto: 2013 Porsche Cayenne S
Quote:
Originally Posted by mason View Post
You are getting either too fancy or too complicated here. It is well known. You can probably find this on common auto mechanic webpage.

The smell is typically mildew due to condensation from the AC system.

Of course, if the system smells like something is buring or a dead rat. Yes, bring it to dealership.

Yes, BMW is an highend vehicle but let's not make yourself like a fool because there is mildew smell from the AC.
I don't think its foolish to complain about a $60k plus car with a smelly A/C. I've owned everything from a Ford to a Lexus in humid Dallas and my 545i was the first to have this problem. Frankly, if Ford can get this right BMW should also.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 02-01-2007, 04:06 PM
w5lx's Avatar
w5lx w5lx is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: North Texas
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 975
Mein Auto: 2008 528i/2007 328i Coupe
Quote:
Originally Posted by TGray5 View Post
After about 20 months of ownership, my 2005 545i has finally started to get a stinky musty AC odor like some of my previous bimmers.

Just curious....do you keep your Recirc Control on Recirc, Outside Air, or Automatic??

Seems I have read you can have this problem if you keep this control on Recirc all the time and that you need to bring in some outside air periodically. I have been leaving mine on Automatic and so far, no problems of this sort.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 02-01-2007, 04:49 PM
kevinp's Avatar
kevinp kevinp is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Annapolis
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 548
Mein Auto: 2007 530i
Another method to avoid creating an environment for mold and bacteria to flourish is to shut off the A/C compressor about 1/2 mile away from home/parking spot and just run the fan. This will dehydrate the system and prevent the extreme temperature difference between the HVAC system and the car, thus minimizing the opportunity for condensation to form within the system, thus providing a ripe environment for the bugs to grow.

Lysol is very effective in killing most forms of bacteria/mold and virus, but the key is exposing the entire system to the chemical.
__________________
2007 530i
Silver Grey, Beige Leather, Sirius, L7, Cold, Premium, Shades
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 02-02-2007, 07:44 PM
HugH HugH is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Arlington TX
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 847
Mein Auto: 2013 BMW 328i
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinp View Post
Another method to avoid creating an environment for mold and bacteria to flourish is to shut off the A/C compressor about 1/2 mile away from home/parking spot and just run the fan. This will dehydrate the system and prevent the extreme temperature difference between the HVAC system and the car, thus minimizing the opportunity for condensation to form within the system, thus providing a ripe environment for the bugs to grow.

Lysol is very effective in killing most forms of bacteria/mold and virus, but the key is exposing the entire system to the chemical.
I had seen that method and have tried it without any benefit.

Right now my car is not smelling, but the trunk, oh... the trunk! When the dealer took care of the smell inside the car, the odor in the trunk went away, only to ruturn after a few weeks.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 02-03-2007, 07:00 AM
bimmerrg bimmerrg is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Atlanta Marietta Georgia
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 175
Mein Auto: 535i
I was getting the smell last summer after I got the car in March. After some experience, I realized that running A/C until we stop and then after a while, restarting causes/throws that bad smell into car. So I stop the A/C a mile before I get to my office and park. Then it is gone!!!
__________________
2009 535i BSM/NB/Prem pkg, Sport pkg, comfort access, Navigation, Sport Transmission with Shift Paddles, PDC, Heated Front Seats, iPod and USB Adaptor, Satellite Radio, BSW Stage 1 Speaker upgrade, JBL MS8 DSP, Technic Harness and BMW Individual co-axial center speaker ==> Superb Custom LOGIC 7, New Michelin Pilot Sport A/S tires! Route 66 Extended Warranty till 5+yrs:1/26/2018 or 100k miles, Beyern Spartan Chrome Concave Rotary Forged Wheels 18x8.5 ET15, 18x9.5 ET25.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 02-03-2007, 07:04 AM
bimmerrg bimmerrg is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Atlanta Marietta Georgia
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 175
Mein Auto: 535i
Also this car is not some how designed to keep water drain off properly. When I open the trunc, I see black residue around the drain holes on the trunc bottom when it sits on bumper. Also the car sides, where the doors drain water I guess are not done right. I see black residue line going vertically right at the end of driver/passenger door and bottom body panel. Now and then I need to scrub it little hard to remove it!!!
__________________
2009 535i BSM/NB/Prem pkg, Sport pkg, comfort access, Navigation, Sport Transmission with Shift Paddles, PDC, Heated Front Seats, iPod and USB Adaptor, Satellite Radio, BSW Stage 1 Speaker upgrade, JBL MS8 DSP, Technic Harness and BMW Individual co-axial center speaker ==> Superb Custom LOGIC 7, New Michelin Pilot Sport A/S tires! Route 66 Extended Warranty till 5+yrs:1/26/2018 or 100k miles, Beyern Spartan Chrome Concave Rotary Forged Wheels 18x8.5 ET15, 18x9.5 ET25.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 02-09-2007, 11:48 AM
BMWNA BMWNA is offline
BMW NA Customer Relations
Location: NJ
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 454
Mein Auto: B M W
I'm with BMW of North America, LLC. I've checked with our experts regarding this issue. This is an industry wide problem caused by humid conditions. Moisture that condenses on the evaporator can provide an environment favorable to microorganisms drawn in either from the outside air, or from inside the passenger compartment (particularly from food or pets). This can cause a musty odor, when the air conditioner is first switched ON.

Using a specially designed tool, your BMW center can chemically clean the evaporator and evaporator box with disinfectant. However, while this can solve the odor problem for an extended period, it is not a permanent fix because the microorganisms can grow again due to the humidity in the air.

BMW recommends that you leave the A/C ON continuously (snowflake button on your A/C panel) to help prevent this situation from happening repeatedly.

Our engineers are still testing further options, but nothing new is anticipated for the immediate future. If you have additional questions or would like our assistance, you can reach us at 800-831-1117 or email us at CustomerRelations@bmwusa.com.
__________________
BMW NA Customer Relations
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 02-09-2007, 12:10 PM
w5lx's Avatar
w5lx w5lx is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: North Texas
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 975
Mein Auto: 2008 528i/2007 328i Coupe
vatkens:
Thanks for addressing this problem. It's good to know you guys are "listening."
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 02-10-2007, 07:41 PM
Bart001's Avatar
Bart001 Bart001 is offline
Hofmeister kink ftw!1!!1!
Location: Massachusetts
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,477
Mein Auto: 2012 X5 35i Premium
Quote:
Originally Posted by mason View Post
It is not warranty work. If odor is warranty work, what next? Bread crumbs clean up? All you have to do is to crank up the heat to the highest temperature and have the AC off. Then let it blast for few minutes. These lovely bateria will die. Try to avoid chemical, that's how super bug created, becoming increasingly resistant to any forms of chemical, i.e. medicine.
The dealer did mine under warranty
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 02-11-2007, 08:05 PM
Seanyiya Seanyiya is offline
Registered User
Location: Las Vegas, USA
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 6
Mein Auto: BMW 525i
Oder that came out from my other car was from condensation in the AC vents... order was cause from mildew..

There was spray can that remove that...
You leave the ac running at air from outside...
You spray that into the crawl (air intake for the AC) from out of the car....
Just spray it all over and it remove the oder.....
Make sure don't get into the car for while though..
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 02-12-2007, 07:23 AM
mason's Avatar
mason mason is offline
Travel Fever
Location: New York, NY
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,706
Mein Auto: 535dx
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bart001 View Post
The dealer did mine under warranty
I meant to say it is not about warranty since it is matter of drying out the bacteria.


Quote:
Originally Posted by paulwbenn View Post
I don't think its foolish to complain about a $60k plus car with a smelly A/C. I've owned everything from a Ford to a Lexus in humid Dallas and my 545i was the first to have this problem. Frankly, if Ford can get this right BMW should also.
In that case, you need to voice your opinion to BMW NA, not your dealership. It is a design issue. This issue can be cleared up before the traffic light turns green. Sure, dealership will do it for you but they will call you ignorant.
__________________



MJ14 535dx - Imperial Blue
MJ10 550 GT - Imperial Blue (retired)
MJ07 530i - Silver Grey (Sold)
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 04-20-2007, 06:33 PM
Duaine Duaine is offline
Registered User
Location: California
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 49
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW 325iT Sport Pkg.
Never experienced this other than my e46

Quote:
Originally Posted by mason View Post
I am not saying dealers won't do it for you free of charges. I am only saying it is a typical thing for all vehicles. You don't need to bring to dealers or wait until visiting dealers to address that. My experience on BMW, Honda, Toyota, Lexus......... are the same. I have used the same trick to get rid of the smell. Sometimes it takes a quick as 2 traffic lights.
My BMW 2002, BMW 320is, BMW 325e, Chevy Caprice, Mazda, Volvo S60, Toyota Truck and Subaru wagon all had air conditioning and none of them had this problem. This is clearly a design flaw of some kind with the e46 a/c system and/or drainage in that system. If it's not under warranty, it should be a recall issue.
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 04-20-2007, 07:05 PM
krash's Avatar
krash krash is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: PA
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,703
Mein Auto: 2013 335i Sport Sedan
I would assume that this is a geographical problem, correct? This wouldn't be an issue for those of us in the Northeast, would it? If we're blasting the heat from Oct through April, would this even be an issue?
__________________
2013 335i: Sport Line, Premium, Technology, DHP, HK, 8 Speed Sport w/Paddles, Heated Seats, PDC, Camera
2004 330ci: zhp, Premium, Dinan upgrades (various)
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 04-24-2007, 10:17 AM
Biff Trout Biff Trout is offline
Principled
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 116
Mein Auto: X5D
Originally posted this on e60.net. I had the issue too way down yonder in humid New Orleans. It is easily cured though the cure requires an additional step at shutdown.

When parking and exiting, I 1) shut off the engine then 2) turn on Parked Car Ventilation then 3) shut down the car. Parked Car Ventilation runs the fan for approx. 30 minutes which thoroughly dries the evaporator coil. Result - dry coil > no mold or mildew > no smelly AC.

Turning on Parked Car Ventilation is easy using I-drive shortcuts. Go thru the I-drive menu for Climate and end up on the Parked Car Ventilation screen. Shut down the car. Until you make a change to another Climate screen (I have not made a change to Climate through I-drive since initial setup in 2-06), the Parked Car Ventilation screen can be reached by moving the I-drive controller right then depressing and holding the controller for a second or two until the Parked Car Ventilation screen appears.

Parked Car Ventilation can only be activated between engine shutdown and car shutdown.

This sounds complicated in writing but is simple in practice. It adds about 3 sec. to shutdown. Once you get into the habit, it becomes second nature.

Smelly AC is gone.
__________________
Regards,

BIFF

06 550i-6spd. Sold 20091113
12 X5D Bought 20120331
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 03-11-2008, 10:53 AM
oghowie oghowie is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: SoCal
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 131
Mein Auto: Alpine White '08 535i
My brand new 2008 535i is having the stinky AC problem.

It's been pretty dry in SoCal too?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E60 (2004 - 2010)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Misfiring All Cyl's when AC is on/Coil DIY ? thevizard E46 (1999 - 2006) 2 08-05-2009 04:09 PM
E46 ZHP with AC off = WOW csciguy8 E46 (1999 - 2006) 26 09-14-2006 11:39 AM
Dinan S3 540 Show Car For Sale U2fanatic Cars - Private Party 0 01-03-2006 11:10 PM
Experts: Please help me value my Dinan S3 540 for sale U2fanatic E39 (1997 - 2003) 12 12-10-2005 09:22 PM
Climate control, AC & the mysterious center vent wheel thing? Moderato 3 Series / 4 Series 61 04-09-2004 10:31 AM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:08 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms