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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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 10-02-2015, 03:50 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Electrical System Fun

Hi Guys....

I don't know if this is one issue or several issues.
I THINK that it most could be rooted in one module.

Electrical systems aren't my cup of tea.
I can work with them - as far as replacing things - but NADA as far as making since out of their design.

Checked fuses in Glove box and in trunk - all fuses are good.

HISTORY
I had the Rear passenger floor fill with water (Loads of rain recently) -
(Fixed the Vapor Barrier)

Headlight Issue could have been going on a while - haven't driven (This car) at night in a while.

WHATS GOING ON:
- Still Researching and Diagnosing
A/C doesn't work - Aux Fan works well but nothing coming out of the vents.

Drivers Door:
Drivers window won't move - I can hear the motor but no action. It did work before the water.
Passenger window goes down (Sometimes) but only goes up from passenger door control (Fixed itself).

M123 Seat settings don't work.
Seat doesn't work (Not a major problem - it's good where it is - lol)
Steering wheel won't adjust.
Driver's Seat and Steering Wheel Adjustment Gremlins...

I Hit the Trifecta:
ASC/DSC, ABS and Brake lights illuminated
Why are my Traction Control (ASC/DSC), ABS and Brake lights illuminated?

My display reads out "Key in the Ignition"
- No Idea....

Key fob/Remote doesn't work.
- No Idea...

Low Beams are out (Both Sides)
Drivers Side High Beam out.
Replaced Low Beams - with New Lights (had an extra set of brand new ones) - no difference.

Passenger Side Rear Blinker out - New Bulb - No Difference.

I'm Thinking it could be (at least in part) a General Module issue -

Am I on the right track?
Any suggestions/Ideas?

Thanks....
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  #2  
Old 10-02-2015, 04:49 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Check the fuses under the passenger floor. All sorts of weird stuff happen when those go bad. And with the water on the floor a prime candidate for your electrical issues. It is the main power distribution center...

Last edited by TheAngryBear; 10-02-2015 at 04:50 PM. Reason: Spelling
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  #3  
Old 10-03-2015, 11:13 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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I don't know if that's the culprit or not - but it was definitely a contributing factor.
- After seeing how much water was there I was surprised the car ran.

Pulled out the Passenger side front seat and rear seat.
(More a Royal pain than difficult - thanks to those ho have done it before me and have thought to leave good instructions)

Then vacuumed out about 2 Gal. of water.

At the moment it's drying out.

Fuse box and connectors will need (at a minimum) a real good cleaning.
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  #4  
Old 10-03-2015, 01:44 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Pulled fuse-box out after finding wires that came loose from connectors.

1st wire on left - off of 3 prong connector (under F110)
All 3 wires off of 3 prong connector (Under F113)

Found algae of some type growing rather well where 3 prong connectors insert into fuse box.

Cleaned and dried fuse box -
(Trying to find my soldering iron...)
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-03-2015 at 01:45 PM.
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  #5  
Old 10-03-2015, 05:40 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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OK - For anybody having a similar issue:

On the 3 Prong connectors (under F110 and F113) -
There are 6 U shaped "Quick Connectors" that come off with gentle but firm wiggling.

I was unable to find a direct replacement match at the local auto parts store, however I did find "Dorman #85447" were workable (They are a little wide), but a little tweaking with a needle nose pliers and it is as good as new.

NOTE: they do require a little extra effort when crimping.
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  #6  
Old 10-04-2015, 11:21 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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System Test:

Headlights Work (1 Low beam - Driver side Out)
Tail Lights and Blinkers Work
A/C Works
Windows Work
Driver side Seat Works
Steering wheel adjust Works
ASC/DSC, ABS and Brake lights turned off.

Still Not Working - No Idea....
My display reads out "Key in the Ignition Lock"
Key fob/Remote doesn't work.
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  #7  
Old 10-04-2015, 11:28 AM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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If you have xenon check the ballast on the drivers side. With all the electrics going crazy that light have "burned". Cheaper fix ($30-40) than a bulb ($80-100).

Reinitialize the key for the functions, as for why key in... Always lit or are you testing with doors open or do you open door early (before off)? Mine chimes that if it thinks any door is open or I am too fast to open door.
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  #8  
Old 10-04-2015, 10:51 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Yes, I have Xeon HID's - (I am very suspicious of the Ballast) - and I will check it when the rain stops.
Will check both Ballast and wire - as I read somewhere the wires go bad.

I'm looking for instructions on Reinitializing the Key.
(Tried instructions from an old post - to no avail - will look for other instructions)

The "Key is in the ignition" message:
I've tried it with the door open, With the door shut, sitting there for a little while before I take the key out - etc. Nothing seems to work. It does stop about the time I shut the door.
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-04-2015 at 11:04 PM.
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  #9  
Old 10-05-2015, 03:37 AM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Did you already do your vapor barriers? Only thing I can think of is maybe on that door(s?) you "bumped" the sensor...
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  #10  
Old 10-05-2015, 07:41 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Yes I took care of it before starting the repairs - the only vapor barrier involved was the Passenger side rear.

It was the last thing to go haywire before starting the repairs.
Although you've got me thinking that it could be a sensor - when you mentioned opening the door too fast it occurred to me that a sensor could be sticking.
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  #11  
Old 10-05-2015, 09:38 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Got it - Pulled the fuse - counted to 30 and it cleared up.
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  #12  
Old 10-05-2015, 02:55 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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I checked the ballast - it sparks 2 or 3 times and nothing - So I'm pretty sure that it's shot.

Now - the car won't start, lights don't work and radio is out.
When starting - it just "Clicks" - nothing else.

(Bang head here)
Checked fuses - fuses in Glove box and trunk OK
Wondering in part if I could have fried the K72 (Overload Protection)
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-05-2015 at 03:05 PM.
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  #13  
Old 10-05-2015, 03:29 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Um... Just to ensure... What's the voltage?
You have been testing a lot...
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  #14  
Old 10-05-2015, 03:34 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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On witch?
(Don't recall all the numbers off the cuff)

Currently have battery unhooked - hoping everything resets
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-05-2015 at 03:35 PM.
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  #15  
Old 10-05-2015, 03:38 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Sorry, battery voltage. Unless you have been running the engine or charging you could have drained the battery between the testing and electrical main original issues...
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  #16  
Old 10-05-2015, 03:50 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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My fault - I should have known...

12.23V
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  #17  
Old 10-05-2015, 04:33 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Yep, should get more than clicks with that but JIC... These love their full batteries...
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  #18  
Old 10-05-2015, 04:41 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Hmmm... Thinking on what you have done... Could it be the power distribution center again? Maybe something came loose with the crimping? If the foam wasn't dried enough then in theory more water could have gone down...

And your sunroof drains are good right? Just checking for no "new" sources of water.
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  #19  
Old 10-05-2015, 04:54 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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I'm REALLY hoping it's not the power distribution center.
(Sure don't want to have to pull out half the interior again...)

No new sources of water - sunroof is good.

I had her running yesterday - ran about 10 miles - beautiful - no probs.

Started today - shut off to check the lights.
Thinking that the arc from the Ballast may have fried something.

JIC - Will put her on a trickle charge tonight.


(In other fun - tried to update the Nav. System - didn't realize til it was too late that the CD's I have are for the MK3/4 - something funky there the CD won't come out)
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  #20  
Old 10-05-2015, 05:03 PM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Main reason I thought it was the power center is that radio, lights, and starter operate on separate elements (I think) so for all three to be out...
As for CD... Will think...
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  #21  
Old 10-05-2015, 05:12 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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I sure don't disagree about it being the Power Center - Just hoping it's not...

With the CD - I tried holding down the button for about 5 min = but nothing.
Tried the old stand by - using a paperclip - but nothing.
(Pulled the unit out - looking for disassembly instructions)
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  #22  
Old 10-05-2015, 11:30 PM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Thinking/wondering if a messed up NAV update could mess up the computer and prevent the car from starting.
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  #23  
Old 10-06-2015, 09:05 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Thanks @TheAngryBear

OK - Left on the charger overnight -
(Thinking the Voltage was right - but the Amps may have needed some help)
@TheAngryBear reminded that BMW's LOVE full batteries -
Was talking to a B6 owner last-night who echoed it saying that most of the problems he's had are due to low battery (Either AMP or Volt)


(Pulled Nav player for disk extraction (need a T6 Torx to dismantle)

Plugged in OBII - No Codes!

Tried to start it -
Started right up & everything seems to work....
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-06-2015 at 09:09 AM.
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  #24  
Old 10-06-2015, 09:35 AM
TheAngryBear TheAngryBear is online now
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Awesome! Glad to hear she is running again!
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  #25  
Old 10-06-2015, 10:41 AM
540FL 540FL is offline
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Glad to report that she's working...

With the Nav - When I got it open I found 2 CD's in there -
1 was the #7 Map disk (Strange - it was in there for past 2 owners - don't know if they couldn't get it out or thought it was required)


(Now on to search the MK2 stuff for Maps... - LOL)
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Last edited by 540FL; 10-06-2015 at 10:44 AM.
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