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 > 3 Series / 4 Series > E36 (1991 - 1999)

E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 08-14-2014, 05:33 AM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Not starting.

Okay, I'm looking at buying a 328is Coupe. It would be a lot of firsts for me, car, manual, BMW, and a few others. It's a 5 speed, should that make any difference in what I'm going tosay next. The car isn't starting. After looking through a few forums and quite a few posts on here, I'm hopingyou all can help. When I try to start the car all the electrics turn on, but I don't get a reaponse from the starter and the console tells me to check the coolant level. Coolant level's not the problem. None of the dash lights are dim, so I can't call it a battery, but I'm open to suggestions. I've tried jumping it twice (through the trunk) to no avail. Had the battery tested, it's holding a 300cca charge. Checked the fuse box, replaced the bad one. Still nothing. Ideas? Thanks in advance.
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 08-14-2014, 06:07 AM
mark21742's Avatar
mark21742 mark21742 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Mercersburg pa
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 262
Mein Auto: 94 325is
Security? Hopefully someone will jump it that knows more about it but there is a ring that picks up the code from the key to allow power from the key to get to the starter solenoid. Also maybe a clutch switch, not sure if mine isn't working right, but i can reach in the window of my 94 325is, turn the key and it fires right up without touching the clutch.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 08-14-2014, 06:24 AM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Well I have no idea about the clutch switch, always had the clutch to the floor when attempting to start it. Maybe it is a bad key, seems to happen a bit.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 08-14-2014, 06:57 AM
ZeGerman's Avatar
ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
Warm Leatherette
Location: Seattle, WA
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 18,854
Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 328is
300cca is about half of what it should be. Batteries are typically 600cca+.
__________________

1998 BMW 328is
1966 Pontiac GTO
2007 Subaru Impreza 2.5i 5-door
View my photos: Caught in the Wild
For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
For sale: OEM E36 328 catback
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 08-14-2014, 07:13 AM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Supposedly this one's rated to 900, so it's running around a third of what it should.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 08-14-2014, 07:19 AM
ZeGerman's Avatar
ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
Warm Leatherette
Location: Seattle, WA
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 18,854
Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 328is
900cca?! I wouldn't want that thing in my car... I think the E36 calls for 650cca, but regardless, it sounds like your battery is toast. Try swapping it with another (more appropriately rated) battery which is known to be in working order and see what happens.
__________________

1998 BMW 328is
1966 Pontiac GTO
2007 Subaru Impreza 2.5i 5-door
View my photos: Caught in the Wild
For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
For sale: OEM E36 328 catback
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 08-14-2014, 07:22 AM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
I'll see what my Lincoln can provide for me. And the one in the 328 is from freakin Interstate. Never had good luck with those.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 08-14-2014, 07:45 AM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Lincoln, Fords, Camaro, and Accord are all mismatched. CCA's are too high. *sigh* Looks like Wally World will have to do, and that has to wait til at least tomorrow.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 08-14-2014, 08:50 AM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci
There's no issue with having higher than specified cold cranking amps. Higher CCA batteries tend to be heavier and sometimes physically larger which could be a fit problem, but from an electrical standpoint the more reserve amperage you have the better.
If you still see the same issue with a known good battery then I'd place my bet on an EWS related issue. Bad key, open sensor ring around the ignition switch, are two initial possibilities. If the car has the on board computer (the display right below the AC/Heat control panel) and it doesn't have power, that's a no crank condition also.
__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 08-14-2014, 09:52 AM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14,372
Mein Auto: 1995 318is / 1993 325is
Quote:
Originally Posted by dc_wright View Post
There's no issue with having higher than specified cold cranking amps.
^ THIS +1. The idea a higher CCA rated battery is bad for the car is an old wives tale. Other than being too big physically, there's no issue with having a battery rated higher than recommended.


And Interstate is one of the best quality batteries you can buy. Bar none. Sorry you've had bad luck with them.
__________________
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13

Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 Forum Mod/Craigslist addict/Hoarder of all sorts of stuff
BMW-CCA #441426
1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira" 1985 635CSi "Katja" 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"
HAVE I HAD MY MEDS YET?

Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 08-14-2014, 10:24 AM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci
Off topic (slightly) but the idea of having to match CCA within a high and low rating reminded of a story from some years ago. One of our electronics techs was furiously going through all the storage bins while grumbling about the poor selection of fuses we had. I asked him what he was looking for and he indicated he needed at 2.5 amp fuse. When I queried why specifically 2.5 amps, he replied when he put in a 2 amp fuse it blew, when he put in a 3 amp fuse it didn't blow but some of the circuitry burned up. He was guesstimating that somehow a 2.5 amp fuse would be the "sweet spot" and make everything work....
__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 08-14-2014, 10:29 AM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14,372
Mein Auto: 1995 318is / 1993 325is
^
__________________
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13

Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 Forum Mod/Craigslist addict/Hoarder of all sorts of stuff
BMW-CCA #441426
1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira" 1985 635CSi "Katja" 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"
HAVE I HAD MY MEDS YET?

Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 08-14-2014, 01:44 PM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
The computer readout below the ac/heater has power, it's still saying check coolant level.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 08-14-2014, 02:42 PM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nochdracos View Post
The computer readout below the ac/heater has power, it's still saying check coolant level.
If you coolant reservoir is full then that's an issue with the level sensor. Easy fix, replace the sensor, but that doesn't have anything to do with your no start issue.
__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 08-14-2014, 02:47 PM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Coolant level's fine, it has been all along. A few days ago I read about someone having a similar issue and it turned out just to be the battery effing with them, I hope it's that easy a fix. From what I understand the car was running perfectly when it was parked in May. *crosses fingers* battery only, here's to hope.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 08-14-2014, 07:24 PM
ZeGerman's Avatar
ZeGerman ZeGerman is offline
Warm Leatherette
Location: Seattle, WA
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 18,854
Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 328is
Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
The idea a higher CCA rated battery is bad for the car is an old wives tale.
Thanks for clearing this up for me Ken & Don. I had heard that years ago and had no reason to question it, so I assumed it to be good practice.
__________________

1998 BMW 328is
1966 Pontiac GTO
2007 Subaru Impreza 2.5i 5-door
View my photos: Caught in the Wild
For sale: E30/E36 front sway links
For sale: OEM E36 328 catback
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 08-14-2014, 08:51 PM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14,372
Mein Auto: 1995 318is / 1993 325is
Back when cars ran generators with low (40 amp or less) output it was possible to overload it with a much-too-large battery. The generator was struggling to supply the system and charge the battery at the same time. Today even the lowest output alternator easily keeps up with the electrical system loads PLUS recharges the battery.
__________________
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13

Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 Forum Mod/Craigslist addict/Hoarder of all sorts of stuff
BMW-CCA #441426
1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira" 1985 635CSi "Katja" 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"
HAVE I HAD MY MEDS YET?

Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 08-15-2014, 03:10 AM
mark21742's Avatar
mark21742 mark21742 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Mercersburg pa
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 262
Mein Auto: 94 325is
All my other cars are running 1000 cca batteries that i relocated to the trunk....BMW did that for me at the factory

i also run i think #2 welding lead wire for all my power cables.
higher cca battery and bigger/better power and ground cables will put less of a strain on the electronics and starter.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 08-15-2014, 04:50 AM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
Back when cars ran generators with low (40 amp or less) output it was possible to overload it with a much-too-large battery. The generator was struggling to supply the system and charge the battery at the same time. Today even the lowest output alternator easily keeps up with the electrical system loads PLUS recharges the battery.

Cars had generators?





















__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 08-15-2014, 07:43 AM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14,372
Mein Auto: 1995 318is / 1993 325is
OK, wise guy. You aren't THAT much younger than me.
__________________
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13

Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 Forum Mod/Craigslist addict/Hoarder of all sorts of stuff
BMW-CCA #441426
1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira" 1985 635CSi "Katja" 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"
HAVE I HAD MY MEDS YET?

Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 08-15-2014, 08:25 AM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci


I do miss generators.......more reliable than alternators and very easy to trouble shoot.
__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 08-15-2014, 01:15 PM
hornhospital's Avatar
hornhospital hornhospital is offline
D'oh, You kids!
Location: In the Grumpy Chair
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14,372
Mein Auto: 1995 318is / 1993 325is
Did you ever change one out and forget to polarize it? You sit there revving the engine and wonder why the charge light won't go off....then suddenly you think "oh, yeah, gotta polarize the generator to get it to charge!"
__________________
Quotes to live by:
guessing gets expensive...drivinfaster
nothing is more expensive than a cheap BMW...c4harpe13

Ken Kanne, Silverhill, AL, E36 Forum Mod/Craigslist addict/Hoarder of all sorts of stuff
BMW-CCA #441426
1995 318is "Bebe"; 1993 325is "Elvira" 1985 635CSi "Katja" 1984 633CSi "Sylvia"
HAVE I HAD MY MEDS YET?

Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 08-15-2014, 03:25 PM
dc_wright's Avatar
dc_wright dc_wright is offline
bimmerfest Supporting Member
Location: Orlando, Florida
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,016
Send a message via ICQ to dc_wright
Mein Auto: '96 328iC, '04 325Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by hornhospital View Post
Did you ever change one out and forget to polarize it? You sit there revving the engine and wonder why the charge light won't go off....then suddenly you think "oh, yeah, gotta polarize the generator to get it to charge!"
More than once I have to admit.....
__________________
2006 Z4 3.0si Sport Package (But I'll still hang with my "homies" in the E36 forum)
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 08-15-2014, 03:34 PM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
Got a battery, no change. Could the starter be the issue? If it is, where would it be located so I can eff with it and fanangle a start from it?
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 08-15-2014, 04:21 PM
Nochdracos Nochdracos is offline
Registered User
Location: Gainesville, VA US
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 12
Mein Auto: nothing
By the way, when I get the key in and turn it all the way all I get as sounds are a fan/pump starting under the hood and clicks from the ignition. Thoughts?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series / 4 Series > E36 (1991 - 1999)
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


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:24 PM.


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