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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 12-18-2010, 04:07 PM
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ztom ztom is offline
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Location: Thousand Oaks CA
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 844
Mein Auto: 1997 528i
air bag light reset - was drivers belt buckle

Here's what I found, may help others.

>Bag light came on (actually on car start goes on as usual, but blinks off then stays on in this case)
>Bought a Peake R5/srs code reader, very easy to use
>Code was drivers belt buckle. Read on other posts this is a common fault. (The other common fault apparently is the passenger side mat in the seat that detects a person
seated.)
>Of course want to not have an issue but fyi read that when there is a SRS fault the system will tend to favor keeping the system active.
>Read that in an accident the buckle will drop down to take up slack. Read on auto parts site (Pelican?) that this assembly has compressed nitrogen. I guess that when released (maybe by a pyro charge?) it pulls the buckle down. I think the issue is the buckle has a switch that senses when the buckles in and over time the switch gets faulty?

>I cleaned the buckle with a spray can of contact cleaner and small tube. Also bent the buckle over and tapped it to try to shake out any dust/sand/lint.
>Reset the SRS and the fault has not come back (yet?). Next time I have time I'll replace it. Heard it is an easy job.
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  #2  
Old 12-18-2010, 04:23 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Quote:
Originally Posted by ztom View Post
Reset the SRS and the fault has not come back
Nice adjunct to the Airbag light reset! nascent thread.
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  #3  
Old 01-02-2011, 12:46 AM
540 powa!! 540 powa!! is offline
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Location: SG
 
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Posts: 6
Mein Auto: bmw 540
hi ztom!
i am new to this forum... and i might also need an airbag reset...
wondering if you can help me out.. i just got my 540i..
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  #4  
Old 03-06-2011, 08:50 PM
franka franka is offline
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Location: Lakewood
 
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Posts: 8,771
Mein Auto: E39 540i Sport
Quote:
Originally Posted by ztom View Post
Here's what I found, may help others.

>Bag light came on (actually on car start goes on as usual, but blinks off then stays on in this case)
>Bought a Peake R5/srs code reader, very easy to use
>Code was drivers belt buckle. Read on other posts this is a common fault. (The other common fault apparently is the passenger side mat in the seat that detects a person
seated.)
>Of course want to not have an issue but fyi read that when there is a SRS fault the system will tend to favor keeping the system active.
>Read that in an accident the buckle will drop down to take up slack. Read on auto parts site (Pelican?) that this assembly has compressed nitrogen. I guess that when released (maybe by a pyro charge?) it pulls the buckle down. I think the issue is the buckle has a switch that senses when the buckles in and over time the switch gets faulty?

>I cleaned the buckle with a spray can of contact cleaner and small tube. Also bent the buckle over and tapped it to try to shake out any dust/sand/lint.
>Reset the SRS and the fault has not come back (yet?). Next time I have time I'll replace it. Heard it is an easy job.
This is good.
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  #5  
Old 03-06-2011, 10:15 PM
bobdmac bobdmac is offline
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Location: Back in Oaktown, Yay Area
 
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Posts: 2,466
Mein Auto: 2001 540i/6, '90 BMW k75s
Quote:
Originally Posted by ztom View Post
>Read that in an accident the buckle will drop down to take up slack. Read on auto parts site (Pelican?) that this assembly has compressed nitrogen. I guess that when released (maybe by a pyro charge?) it pulls the buckle down. I think the issue is the buckle has a switch that senses when the buckles in and over time the switch gets faulty?
I can confirm some of this. When I bought my car, the driver's side seatbelt wouldn't latch. You could insert the lap/shoulder belt tab in all the way, but it just wouldn't catch. This, of course, kept the seatbelt light on, and the airbag switch came on. I had to take out the seat and replace the latch, which has a lever-operated "pretensioner" in it, triggered by a little explosive detonator. It cost about $250, I think, at the dealership. Supposedly it's hard (although not necessarily impossible) to find a supplier that will ship it across state lines because of the explosive charge.

In any event, I had to take out the seat to remove the latch with the pretensioner because it's anchored to the seat. It wasn't hard, although I was surprised to find there was a little spring-loaded cable sticking out of the carpet that needed to be reattached to the seat, and it took me a while to find the attachment point. However, once I get everything back together, the seatbelt and airbag lights went out.

I was just fortunate that the failure point was so obvious, because my seatbelt simply wouldn't stay put. I don't know how common this is, and I don't know if this is the reason the OP's airbag light went on. It just now occurred to me to ask if the OP's seatbelt light was also on. If so, we might be talking about the same problem.
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  #6  
Old 01-10-2012, 11:40 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
For the cross-linked record, this thread today has useful anecdotal information:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Airbag Warning Light?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Behmermaen View Post
I got a warning light this morning on my 00' e39 528i, it looks like a little stick man getting crushed by an airbag and its in the top right corner of the right cluster of warning lights. Does anyone know what it means and/or a fix for it?
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  #7  
Old 09-26-2012, 03:25 PM
Guam135i Guam135i is offline
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Location: Guam
 
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Posts: 131
Mein Auto: 08 135i Coupe
I found my problem I have the seat taken out and the cable detached that is what probably caused the air bag light to come on. thanks
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  #8  
Old 10-09-2012, 01:53 PM
mysweetx5 mysweetx5 is offline
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Location: connecticut
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 37
Mein Auto: BMW X 5 4.4i
Quote:
Originally Posted by ztom View Post
Here's what I found, may help others.

>Bag light came on (actually on car start goes on as usual, but blinks off then stays on in this case)
>Bought a Peake R5/srs code reader, very easy to use
>Code was drivers belt buckle. Read on other posts this is a common fault. (The other common fault apparently is the passenger side mat in the seat that detects a person
seated.)
>Of course want to not have an issue but fyi read that when there is a SRS fault the system will tend to favor keeping the system active.
>Read that in an accident the buckle will drop down to take up slack. Read on auto parts site (Pelican?) that this assembly has compressed nitrogen. I guess that when released (maybe by a pyro charge?) it pulls the buckle down. I think the issue is the buckle has a switch that senses when the buckles in and over time the switch gets faulty?

>I cleaned the buckle with a spray can of contact cleaner and small tube. Also bent the buckle over and tapped it to try to shake out any dust/sand/lint.
>Reset the SRS and the fault has not come back (yet?). Next time I have time I'll replace it. Heard it is an easy job.
my peak 16pin tool revealed code: (03 & 05) but unfortunately got confused on these two codes and do NOT know what do they mean or which locations they pointed me to; the fact that , there are some other definitions described by the same two codes in the manual book.

I TRIEDTHE SAME THING ON MY 2001 BMW X5 BY FOLLOWING THE SAME (100ohm RESISTOR, THEY ARE A LITTLE SMALL BUT THE SAME CAPACITY.AND THE DIODE WITH THE COLORED SILVER GOES TO THE BLUE WIRE, BUT IT DOESN'T WORK at ALL. WHEN I PLUG THE PEAK SR5 16 PIN TOOL TO CLEAR THE CODE, BUT THE AIR BAG LIGHT COMES RIGHT BACK LESS THAN A SECOND. ANY HELP???
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  #9  
Old 05-20-2013, 08:31 AM
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bin01123 bin01123 is offline
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Location: Atlanta, GA
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 213
Mein Auto: 2001 540i 6 Speed
Good info here. I'm going to try this when I get home
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  #10  
Old 11-26-2013, 05:54 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 20,360
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
For the record, see a related thread opened today:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > E39 Airbag and Seat belt light
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Each repair should invariably add to our knowledge base by the process of inexorable incrementalism.
Your job, in return, is to read the suggested threads, where the best people will always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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