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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 10-01-2014, 07:46 PM
conray18 conray18 is offline
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Location: New Jersey, USA
 
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Mein Auto: 1998 528i
1998 Ignition Wire Location

I had recently bought these RGB multi-color halo rings for my '98 528i.


I was originally planning on wiring them to the turn signal lamps, but upon further investigation on installation, I see that many people go with wiring the power for the rings, to the ignition wire in the ECU box. This would avoid having to switch the halo rings on using the headlight switch (which could get annoying after a while).

My only problem now is simply locating that ignition wire and finding out what color it is. :/

I know there is literally a crap load of different wires within that ECU box, and I'd hate to screw it all up by tapping into the wrong wire.

Any thoughts? Thanks!_a2_
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  #2  
Old 10-01-2014, 11:32 PM
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540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
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Personally, I would stay the heck away from the Motronic ECU or any of the control modules for tapping some power. You might consider going straight to the fuse panel (in the glove box), and find some power that is switched by the ignition switch there. I would additionally fuse, whatever you tap into. Good luck!
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  #3  
Old 10-02-2014, 12:41 AM
edjack edjack is offline
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Mein Auto: '97 540i 6 speed
Buy a copy of the Bentley E39 service manual before you begin futzing around with the electrics, so you can understand what to do.

I agree with 540 M-Sport: Stay out of the e-box!
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Last edited by edjack; 10-02-2014 at 12:43 AM.
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  #4  
Old 10-02-2014, 06:55 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
Location: Under the lift arms
 
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Mein Auto: E39 540, E36 328is, E83x3
run a new line from a constent hot, add a relay, and toggle the relay thur the fuse block that comes on and off with the light switch
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  #5  
Old 10-02-2014, 07:02 PM
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540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burning2nd View Post
run a new line from a constent hot, add a relay, and toggle the relay thur the fuse block that comes on and off with the light switch
I think his plan is he wants the halos on, anytime the engine is running, so he wants to tap off something hot only when ignition is "on".
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  #6  
Old 10-03-2014, 02:39 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
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oh then thats ez enough, you could feed the relay off the window curicuit, but what ever you do make sure that you only feed the relay side,

you dont want to power the halos on anything other then there own curicuit, the relay switching has almost no draw, the halos... unknown,
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  #7  
Old 10-03-2014, 02:59 PM
five.two.five five.two.five is offline
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Mein Auto: 2002 525I
vehicle wiring diagram
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 1998 BMW 5-series.pdf (130.0 KB, 25 views)
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  #8  
Old 10-03-2014, 03:59 PM
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johnstern johnstern is offline
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OK, here's what I did. I don't know if your car is the same as mine. There is a purple with white stripe wire that goes to the round diagnostic plug under the hood. It is an ignition wire. I spliced into that wire and used it to activate the relay. I ran the power wire from the positive battery terminal at the rear left of my engine around the back of the engine to the relay bolted to a spare bracket at the right front of the engine compartment.

Now my AEs act like daytime running lights as they are on as soon as the ignition is turned on. I did this 5 or 6 years ago and have had no problems.

Edit-As Burning2nd said, don't even think of using that ignition wire to power the AEs unless you want some serious electrical problems.

Last edited by johnstern; 10-03-2014 at 04:04 PM.
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  #9  
Old 10-03-2014, 07:40 PM
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540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burning2nd View Post
oh then thats ez enough, you could feed the relay off the window curicuit, but what ever you do make sure that you only feed the relay side,

you dont want to power the halos on anything other then there own curicuit, the relay switching has almost no draw, the halos... unknown,
Agreed that adding additional power load on a circuit is not always a good idea. I suspect these are LED and don't draw much, but your advice is definitely the safest route.
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