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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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  #26  
Old 12-24-2007, 06:13 AM
huttey huttey is offline
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  #27  
Old 12-24-2007, 07:17 PM
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WickedA2 WickedA2 is offline
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Wow sorry to hear about your loss.
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  #28  
Old 12-25-2007, 12:21 PM
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edgar620 edgar620 is offline
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I still think your insurance is hosing you. I'm having problems with insurance on my parents house with storm damage so I looked this up to see what you guys did. I guess I know who to complainto now.
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  #29  
Old 12-25-2007, 12:44 PM
porksoda porksoda is offline
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Hiya,

sory to read your misfortune. I had a tiny bit of trouble but pebbles compared to your misfortune...

i would recommend the following:

- bmw na wont do much about it unless the car was an e60 and still under normal warranty. If you have extended warranty they maybe able to do something but probably not.

- i would press your insurance company... i would recommend just getting a lawyer at this point as they are refusing... insurance companies say no to borderline big claims in my experience and also depends on the insurance company... i would get a lawyer and persue it.

- keep your car happy and do checks and get it scanned every once in a while and keep it maintained.

very sorry to hear your misfortune nonetheless :S I hope everything is safe and you will be with your car soon enough.
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  #30  
Old 12-25-2007, 05:54 PM
franka franka is offline
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I've not read all the posts but I think this is going to be a court fight. Lawyer up or forget it. One way or the other.
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  #31  
Old 12-26-2007, 07:42 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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IT was the Electro Mechanical thermostat that failed. No early warning signs of any anti-freeze leaking. Car was solid! I was told that the thermostat 'failed', whatever that means these days and caused a short that did a complete melt-down of my entire electrical system including frying the computer. I just finished filing the report to the DOT who has taken this incident very seriously. Seems another BMW owner reported this and when this happens it stops the car. In that guys case, his 540 stopped in the middle lane on a highway.

I am surprised BMW is not all over this. I was contacted by BMW North America who said they are sending an engineer to take pictures and review with the engineering team. In the meantime I dont have a car to get to work and my $50K car is sitting behind a BMW shop under a snow bank until they fix it.

Anyone want to talk with me about this experience please call my cell 978.846.1175 ken

I dont want to see anyone get hurt. I jumped out of a fast smoke filling car on a highway as it was. What would have happened if I had my children in the back!
Ken
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  #32  
Old 12-26-2007, 07:49 AM
franka franka is offline
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[QUOTE=beemer540ia; I jumped out of a fast smoke filling car on a highway as it was. What would have happened if I had my children in the back!
Ken[/QUOTE]


Rolling the windows down might have gotten you a few more minutes. Or it could have accelerated the burn.
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  #33  
Old 12-26-2007, 08:29 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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Your right Frank. As a nine year firefighter I knew if I introduced oxygen into the car it might have been enough to provide the third element; FUEL, HEAT, OXYGEN,, BANG!!!
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  #34  
Old 12-26-2007, 09:10 AM
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Sorry to hear about your loss. Can I ask when was the last time you changed the thermostat? Also, was it done at the dealer or an indy shop? I'm curious to know, if it was an installation issue, or a part issue (design flaw); or a combo of the two.

As a 540 owner myself, I'm very interested in hearing the outcome of your experience.
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  #35  
Old 12-26-2007, 10:25 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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Never had to replace the thermostat Burt. Had all my BIG service jobs done at BMW service centers and never had they told me it needed replacing or that it had a defect which could cause a fire or severe damage to my car or I would have told them to replace it. I did hear this can happen on the 540 though. You might want to look into it. Ask your BMW service office if they guarantee your car will not catch fire or burn out all your wiring. You will be looking at over $4,000.00 to fix it. I am.
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  #36  
Old 12-26-2007, 10:33 AM
franka franka is offline
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[QUOTE=beemer540ia; You will be looking at over $4,000.00 to fix it. I am.[/QUOTE]

Replacing the complete interior due to smoke damage, all the plastic and non-plastic engine components, the wiring harness and a paint job will be a lot more than $ 4K.
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  #37  
Old 12-26-2007, 10:46 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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The $4k is what they found just UNDER the hood. Never got in the car yet. I got this feeling this is not going to get fixed so I already hired an attorney to go after BMW for negligence and also the insurance company.

If I end up paying for any of this crap it will be my families last BMW and I will sell this as soon as it gets fixed.
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  #38  
Old 12-26-2007, 10:49 AM
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I actually bought my 540 from a private party with around 86K and three days after the purchase the radiator blew up! My thermostat among other things were replaced at that time. How many miles did your car have when the incident occured?
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  #39  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:08 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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my car has about 138k. I've been told that this part will have a failure and short out your electrical system at any time. I was told this from the DOT who has more records on this problem.
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  #40  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:12 AM
franka franka is offline
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Specifically what is the part?
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  #41  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:17 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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All the repair order says Frank is THERMOSTAT @ $82.94 and then all the other stuff like wiring harness, DME alone is $1,326.00
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  #42  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:41 AM
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burt540 burt540 is offline
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So are you saying that you didn't have the cooling system overhauled prior to the incident? That's an aweful long time without having one done (138K)! As stated earlier, my cooling system gave out around 86K.
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  #43  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:56 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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They replaced two radiators in its lifetime but nothing else has failed or I have been told to replace.
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  #44  
Old 12-26-2007, 11:56 AM
franka franka is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burt540 View Post
So are you saying that you didn't have the cooling system overhauled prior to the incident? That's an aweful long time without having one done (138K)! As stated earlier, my cooling system gave out around 86K.
My radiator lasted to 165K miles, until the water pump jammed and the belt pushed the pump and the fan into the radiator.

New radiator, new pump, new fan, new belt, new thermo, etc ....Fun
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  #45  
Old 12-26-2007, 01:48 PM
Viktor Viktor is offline
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You guys are worrying the hell out of me! I need to get my leaks fixed next week, I'm gonna ask my mechanic to check that thermostat while he's in there.
I hope you get the treatment you deserve from all this, Ken. It sucks how loyal a company expects their customers to be but there are some bad apples that won't do the same in return and ruin the entire company's reputation. Especially when you love your car enough to keep dishing out cash and having the patients to keep it maintained well after the warranty is done with.
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  #46  
Old 12-26-2007, 03:07 PM
jotsuka jotsuka is offline
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sorry about that bro... I feel for ya... my buddy works for progressive i could email/call him if you need it... anything i could do you just know.. that blows... go pats
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  #47  
Old 12-26-2007, 04:27 PM
solid snake solid snake is offline
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really sorry to hear about your loss, god nevermind about a car as you say your wife, kids could have been in it. i know laws are diffrent over there but god sake the insurance should pay you out 100%. i wish you all the best with all, and stay on there back. sorry again mate.
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  #48  
Old 12-27-2007, 05:42 AM
beemer540ia beemer540ia is offline
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Strange but this posting no longer shows up in the message board. Does BMW itself run this board and they control what goes up?
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  #49  
Old 12-27-2007, 06:54 AM
franka franka is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beemer540ia View Post
Strange but this posting no longer shows up in the message board. Does BMW itself run this board and they control what goes up?
No but they could have influence. I don't know.
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  #50  
Old 12-27-2007, 04:29 PM
Bigred455 Bigred455 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigred455 View Post
IF it was infact the thermostat that failed, this what happened:

The thermostat has a sensor located on it for the 'map' control. The sensor will leak coolant past the housing and into the engine harness connector. Usually when this happens you will see dried coolant around the connection. Most times when it contaminates the harness it blows the fuse in the relay pack located in the E-box. If you replace this fuse without fixing the thermostat THEN they usually catch fire, most of the time they don't burn the first go around.

Sorry for your luck, but that is what happened and unfortunately it didn't pop the fuse.
see above
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