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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 11-02-2008, 01:43 PM
jkgrage jkgrage is offline
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service engine soon indicator

how do I turn off the 'service engine soon'' indicator on my dash? it is in the lower left of the instrument cluster window. It is bright yellow. What does it mean?
Service engine soon is pretty broad. I don't find any reference to it in my owners manual.
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  #2  
Old 11-02-2008, 01:49 PM
turbobladz turbobladz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkgrage View Post
how do I turn off the 'service engine soon'' indicator on my dash? it is in the lower left of the instrument cluster window. It is bright yellow. What does it mean?
Service engine soon is pretty broad. I don't find any reference to it in my owners manual.
you cant just turn it off i need to be reset either through a scanner or when you get the oil changed at the dealer.
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  #3  
Old 11-02-2008, 02:00 PM
poolman poolman is offline
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It means that your cars computer has detected a fault code and it's trying to tell you somethings wrong.
You should find an indy to read the code that has been thrown and fix the problem--most of the time with our cars the primary code that comes up though is for the emmisions purge fault--and most of the time it's because the gas cap is loose. Check your cap--and then drive some and it may reset itself, meaning the light will go out on it's own after about 60 miles or so.
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Old 11-02-2008, 02:26 PM
turbobladz turbobladz is offline
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isnt the service engine soon light maintenance? I was under the impression that there is a separate check engine light, unless im getting confused with change oil soon
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  #5  
Old 11-02-2008, 02:27 PM
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Vitacura Vitacura is offline
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I always recommend a Peake code reader to anyone who owns a BMW.
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  #6  
Old 11-02-2008, 02:36 PM
Waveho Waveho is offline
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Yes you have either a single occurrence problem (f/e, "random misfire detected"), in which case the light will self-extinguish eventually if the malfunction does not re-occur, or you have a continuing problem. The fault code will still be stored for future reference even if it goes out. In any case you should get the fault code checked at AutoZone, or better yet, get a Peake code reader as suggested by Vitacura.
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Old 11-02-2008, 02:37 PM
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Fudman Fudman is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vitacura View Post
I always recommend a Peake code reader to anyone who owns a BMW.
+1, at $100+/hr at the dealership, it pays for itself the first time you use it. Or go to Autozone.
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  #8  
Old 11-02-2008, 02:47 PM
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chiefwej chiefwej is offline
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What is the advantage of the Peake code reader over the Cen-Tech CAN OBD II scan tool, that I bought at Harbor Freight, on sale for $39?
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  #9  
Old 11-02-2008, 03:10 PM
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Vitacura Vitacura is offline
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Originally Posted by chiefwej View Post
What is the advantage of the Peake code reader over the Cen-Tech CAN OBD II scan tool, that I bought at Harbor Freight, on sale for $39?
BMW Specific Codes vs. OBDII - What's The Difference?
In addition to the required OBD system, your BMW - and in fact ALL BMWs as old as 1987 - maintains its own, factory-programmed and BMW-specific diagnostic system. The parameters monitored by this system extend beyond emissions related faults, and their corresponding codes translate to EXACTLY what the factory wants the technicians to know. While some fault codes will overlap with OBDII codes, many will not. Many more will be more descriptive/accurate than the corresponding OBDII offering.

More importantly, there are some fault codes that OBDII will simply not read. For example, in a review of codes for one specific model (2000 323i) there are more than twenty-five BMW Specific codes that are simply NOT REPRESENTED by the generic OBDII system. This is common for most models. Therefore, by relying on the readings from a generic OBDII tool, you are potentially missing important information.

Because of these gaps, as well as codes that are potentially less accurate, BMW service centers and technicians do not use OBDII tools to diagnose problems. They solely rely on the factory programmed, BMW specific fault codes.
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-2008 328i Jet Black on Black, Premium, Sport, Nav, Step, Paddle, Ipod
-2002 M5 LeMans Blue on Black. Rear Sunshade, M-Sound, Heated Seats, Xenon, PDC
-2004 M3 Convertible. Silver Grey on Grey. SMG, Nav, HK Sound, Heated Seats, Xenon
-2007 335i Jet Black, Terra Leather, Premium, Sport, Step, Paddle, Nav, Comfort Access
-2006 525i Black Sapphire Metallic with Beige, Manual, Nav, HUD, PDC, Xenon
-2002 325i Orient Blue Metallic, Beige interior, Manual, Sunroof
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  #10  
Old 11-02-2008, 03:20 PM
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chiefwej chiefwej is offline
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The OBD reader reads out "manufacturer specific" codes, then I can search on-line data bases for further explanation and diagnosis.
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  #11  
Old 11-02-2008, 03:21 PM
Waveho Waveho is offline
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I think what Vitacura is saying is that reading codes from the BMW port with a BMW-specific code reader is better than generic OBDII readers I agree. Though using both at the same time is probably the best, since you can use a program like carsoft via the OBDII port to read some technical data that is not available through the BMW port, like real-time performance, emissions, etc.
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