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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 12-19-2009, 07:01 AM
Svanteah Svanteah is offline
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Unhappy BMW X3 Doesn't start

The other day I drove my wife downtown Stockholm Sweden. I parked outside the shop and remained in the car with the engine turned off, but still listening to the radio. 20 minutes later when my wife returnes and I try to start the car it is DEAD. There is enough power in the battery, all indicators in the speedometer turns on and then turns off one after the other like normal. When the key is turned to spring back position to start the engine NOTHING happends. The gear lever is in P position, my foot is on the brake although not needed for start only for gear lever shift. Many try's were performed, but no luck. A phone call to my closeby living son, who then came and towed me to BMW service garage. Silly for an BMW X3 to be towed by a BMW 330i especially in deep snow.

Has anybody experienced the same behaviour trying to start a BMW X3, 2004
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  #2  
Old 12-19-2009, 08:18 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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Svan, its not good for an X3 (or any AWD car/truck) to be "towed" they should be flatbedded to avoid damage to the drive train. I hope you had no damage, and the car was fixed.
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  #3  
Old 12-19-2009, 10:38 AM
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X3-terrestrial X3-terrestrial is offline
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more than likely you need a new battery.
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  #4  
Old 12-19-2009, 09:27 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is online now
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Yes, if the original battery from 2004, it might have just suffered some major collapse internally when you first went to restart.

Quite incidental to you sitting there for 20 mins., probably with the ignition switch in position
Acc., or key out and the radio switched on manually.

A more unlikely scenario would be something in the starter, its solenoid, or the immobilizer circuit having a failure just at that moment.

Hope it all works out O.K.
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  #5  
Old 01-06-2010, 07:32 AM
Svanteah Svanteah is offline
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Thank you for your comments, the problem has been solved. The reason being was a faulty oil level sensor. The sensor is in the Canbus circuitry and due to a shortage or break-up in the sensor electronics caused a can bus communication error. For other problems in the future, check the canbus communication, it is key for the car to function. The cost for diagnostics, sparepart and an Oil service was about USD 1100.

There was no damage to the transmission due to towing the car. It states in the user manual that the car can be towed 150km at max speed of 30km/h and with the gear lever in N. I towed the car 10km. To be on the safe side I did rent a car trailer with boogie to move the X3 from my home to the service shop, about 25km. I used a Range Rover to pull the trailer.
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  #6  
Old 01-06-2010, 08:40 AM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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Svan, thanks for the update. Forgive a stupid question but what is a "canbus"? Glad you got it fixed.
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  #7  
Old 01-06-2010, 01:16 PM
enamoured enamoured is offline
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Originally Posted by UncleJ View Post
Svan, thanks for the update. Forgive a stupid question but what is a "canbus"? Glad you got it fixed.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Controller_area_network

This website is really good for automobile related searches but works well with others too

http://www.lmgtfy.com/

j/k
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  #8  
Old 01-06-2010, 04:47 PM
cubed cubed is offline
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Too much cannabis in the system definitely can cause problems. I knew bimmers were cool -- now i know why
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  #9  
Old 01-06-2010, 04:52 PM
UncleJ UncleJ is offline
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Well that answers that. Thanks for the link it answered my question about Svan's problem. I suspect we might have called it a problem with the ECU but maybe not. In any event it is a pricey little devil.
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  #10  
Old 01-06-2010, 05:20 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Well that answers that. Thanks for the link it answered my question about Svan's problem. I suspect we might have called it a problem with the ECU but maybe not. In any event it is a pricey little devil.

Hence the reason out of warranty out of my household.

That doesn't mean I won't buy another one if they improve it to meet (exceed) today's competition.
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  #11  
Old 07-17-2010, 03:56 PM
Tirwin Tirwin is offline
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This just happened to me...

...literally within the last hour. Jumping didn't help. If it is the starter, would a X3 have that traditional fast click, click, click of a bad starter?? I'll look into a CANbus further and see if that's it.
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  #12  
Old 07-17-2010, 05:52 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is online now
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...literally within the last hour. Jumping didn't help.
I'd say the fast clicking is just indicative of insufficient juice for the starter to crank the engine.

Nothing necessarily wrong with the starter - unless you had signs of strange noises from it recently.

If the battery is completely discharged, may be critical to:

- use the jump posts under the hood
(connecting to your battery introduces more of a voltage drop than you want, especially if the helper is not a tow truck with a really powerful setup)

- not try and start right away, but let your battery build up a bit of charge for a few minutes

I think svan's particular cause is quite rare, and might only apply to 2007+ models with their advanced oil level monitoring.

The starter could be a more likely suspect. Some people recommend rapping them with a bit of 2x4 to see if that can restore them on a temporary basis.
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  #13  
Old 07-17-2010, 07:07 PM
Tirwin Tirwin is offline
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I'll give the posts a try and give it more time. Just to be more clear about the original question, there is no clicking from the starter, which makes me think it wouldn't be the starter. But I was wondering if BMW starters (or starters in general these days) don't do the clicking when they go. Are you serious about the starter and the 2x4?!?
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  #14  
Old 07-17-2010, 07:55 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tirwin View Post
Are you serious about the starter and the 2x4?!?
Yes.

Historically ...
the clicking is not an indication that a starter has failed, just that an external solenoid mounted on it is having a bit of trouble getting energized.

Loose or corroded clamps on the battery terminals can be the cause, or just a run down battery.

However, if it's the solenoid itself that has sticky contacts, the hammer treatment is fairly standard practice among emergency rescue operators.

Used to be that the solenoid itself could be replaced, avoiding the expense of a whole new starter.

But back to the present ....
not sure if that is still the case, with the X3 at least.
Maybe now has a different sort of integrated internal solenoid.

So I would say the absence of clicking doesn't conclusively mean your starter is good, but nor does it say it's bad.

Odds are that you need the right sort of boost to get going, and more than likely a new battery to avoid a recurrence.
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  #15  
Old 07-24-2010, 11:25 AM
Tirwin Tirwin is offline
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final result... bad key! who would have thought.
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  #16  
Old 05-04-2013, 09:46 AM
mojolynch mojolynch is offline
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2005x3 starting issue

It's saturday and the shop's not open, so we are looking for suggestions as to a possible source for our starting issue, which brought me to joining the Bimmerfest forum. Here's the story: When attempting to start the car, there are ticking, flashing headlights and some "electronic" hum, but no engine turnover noise whatsoever. The car has not been started for about 5 weeks, because I have been living out of town over the last year with sporadic visits back, when I drive it. When last driven over the 1st weekend in April, there were no issues and it had a 100K check-up in March. This was the first time we had not taken it to the dealer - which made we wonder about a key issue based on the last post, because our keys have not been charged since October 2011. Checked battery charge with volt meter, read 11.8v Battery has not been replaced since new. The low gas light is on, but the instrument panel indicates there is 46 miles worth of gas in the tank. Any ideas regarding the problem would be greatly appreciated.
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  #17  
Old 05-04-2013, 10:34 AM
Aaron1021 Aaron1021 is online now
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11.8v is very low and the battery likely needs charging or replacing. I think at 12v, the battery only has about a 25% charge. 12.6-12.7v would be 100% Have you tried jump starting it?
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  #18  
Old 05-04-2013, 10:46 AM
mojolynch mojolynch is offline
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Aaron, Thanks so much for your response. We thought we better try that next and we did. The car did start, but is running horribly! We then hooked it up to a charger, which appears to indicate that the battery is faulty. Now we are wondering if we can take that battery out and find a replacement at the parts store. Is there anything special to know about replacing the battery, computer re-boot, etc?
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  #19  
Old 05-04-2013, 11:00 AM
Aaron1021 Aaron1021 is online now
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You can probably find a suitable replacement at any reputable parts store. I don't think there's anything special with changing the battery, but i'm new to the BMW world, so I can't say for sure.
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  #20  
Old 05-04-2013, 03:13 PM
mojolynch mojolynch is offline
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Thanks. Will post what we find out. BTW, Dallas area is where I'm spending the year and opted to take the '81 Fiat Spider over the x3!
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  #21  
Old 06-25-2013, 04:49 AM
BuckNaked BuckNaked is offline
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2007 X3 showed symptoms of failing battery. Sluggish starting when hot, intermittant at first. I replaced the battery a week ago, but the problem persisted. Yesterday it had a hard start when cold in the morning, and again after work. When i got home and shut the truck off, I immediately tried to restart, but it is completely dead. I tried swapping the battery with the one from my 540, which is also new and proven working, but no luck. Still nothing but a couple of clicking sounds.
I have a flatbed on the way...
As a side-note, i did replace the coolant temp sensor on top of block. No change.
More as i find out...
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  #22  
Old 06-25-2013, 04:49 AM
BuckNaked BuckNaked is offline
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Edit - duplicate post.

Last edited by BuckNaked; 06-25-2013 at 04:51 AM.
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  #23  
Old 06-25-2013, 06:21 AM
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  #24  
Old 07-03-2013, 03:25 PM
BuckNaked BuckNaked is offline
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Originally Posted by BuckNaked View Post
2007 X3 showed symptoms of failing battery. Sluggish starting when hot, intermittant at first. I replaced the battery a week ago, but the problem persisted. Yesterday it had a hard start when cold in the morning, and again after work. When i got home and shut the truck off, I immediately tried to restart, but it is completely dead. I tried swapping the battery with the one from my 540, which is also new and proven working, but no luck. Still nothing but a couple of clicking sounds.
I have a flatbed on the way...
As a side-note, i did replace the coolant temp sensor on top of block. No change.
More as i find out...
Replaced starter and all is well. $540 at my indy shop. Intake had to come off to gain access. Too bad the warrantee expired at the end of march. Pfft.
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  #25  
Old 07-03-2013, 04:07 PM
joylove joylove is online now
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Mine is in the garage right now, hot weather meant it wouldn't start yesterday. Symptoms were: totally dead when you turn the key. Not even a click. All dash lights are behaving normally.
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