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7 Series - E38 (1995 - 2001)

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Old 10-19-2009, 12:42 PM
shmoo235 shmoo235 is offline
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Location: NYC Suburb
Join Date: May 2009
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Mein Auto: '96 741i
Ignition mystery

hey folks.....I had an interesting thing happen today and it kind of stumped me. While putting my key into my '96 740il ignition to start the car, I turned it a little too early and the cylinder turned freely, forward or back. It didn't engage to start just spun. I kind of freaked out and set it back to the original position, set the key in all the way and the car started. I turned the car off perplexed, pulled the key out a little and attempted to recreate what happened. Sure enough almost to the "in" point the cylinder was "free" turning. I didn't want to see what would happen if I continued to turn it for fear of messing something up. Is this right or not.....Any ideas would be helpful.........thanks
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Old 10-19-2009, 02:20 PM
CodyItaliano's Avatar
CodyItaliano CodyItaliano is offline
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Location: Corpus Christi, TX
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 628
Mein Auto: 2001 740i
a spring loaded mechanism is probably malfunctioning. not something that will fix itself, and will likely get worse. i drove an audi a6 for a while that had a similar problem. you can either deal with it, or just get it fixed.

*Der E38*
manufactured: 7/01
color: anthrecite metallic
wheels: style 89 E66, 19X9F 19X10R
ext. lighting: 8000k D2S & LED plate light
*want to get sport rear diff*
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:44 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2010
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Mein Auto: BMW 635 CSi BMW 730i E38
I call this freewheeling and I've found this can happen with fairly new ignition locks, Never ever try to turn the key backwards, always turn it in the correct orientation and it should be fine. This sometimes has happened to my e38 but don't panic it's ok.
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