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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
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  #1  
Old 05-09-2015, 11:16 PM
GKLCPA GKLCPA is offline
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Occasional Weak Crank!

As the subject indicates, occasionally, when I start my car, the crank feels weak---almost as if the battery doesn't have enough power. This usually occurs after I've been driving the car. I've not tested the battery, but the low battery light is not illuminated. Car has 103K on the clock. Do I have a dying starter?
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  #2  
Old 05-10-2015, 04:47 AM
gapost gapost is offline
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Around that mileage, the starter can draw extra amps from the battery and ultimately, cause the battery to die. Especially with short trips and lots of starts. It's a slow process over time, but it can leave you with a dead battery. The fix is to replace the starter, which means removing the intake manifold. You could check your battery and see the charge level. If it's not close to 100 %, it's likely the starter drain.
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  #3  
Old 05-10-2015, 06:14 AM
GKLCPA GKLCPA is offline
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Looking at this, I'm not certain if I want to take on as a DIY. How much can I expect to pay an Indy shop to do?
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  #4  
Old 05-10-2015, 09:30 AM
gapost gapost is offline
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I think it's about a four hour job at the shop. So that plus starter, which they will probably charge about $300 for the parts. I think others have said about $700-800, but you may want to check your battery first. If it's old, that may be the issue, but these starters are know to go bad by excessive battery drain.
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  #5  
Old 05-10-2015, 11:09 AM
AzNMpower32's Avatar
AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GKLCPA View Post
As the subject indicates, occasionally, when I start my car, the crank feels weak---almost as if the battery doesn't have enough power. This usually occurs after I've been driving the car. I've not tested the battery, but the low battery light is not illuminated. Car has 103K on the clock. Do I have a dying starter?
The battery light on the dash only indicates a fault with the alternator, not low voltage.

How many years/km does the battery have? What is your driving profile? If you have 103k mls (160k km) on the original battery, I would suggest a replacement before the summer season comes.

I doubt it is a starter, as it is fairly robust on BMWs. And consider that since 2008, I have been minicking "Start-stop automatic" on all my cars when appropriate, turning off the motor at stop lights and long waits to eliminate idling......never had an issue with the starter. My hunch is the battery itself.

Last edited by AzNMpower32; 05-10-2015 at 11:10 AM.
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  #6  
Old 05-10-2015, 11:31 AM
timgray timgray is offline
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Did you check your ground strap under the car that runs from the body to the engine. if it is broken or hanging by a thread, this needs to be replaced first before anything else is done.

Next is the starter and it's not hard, I did it on my 2007 in 4 hours in the driveway while eating dinner, drinking 4 beers, and taking 2 phone calls. A shop should be able to do it in less than 4 hours. Problem is most shops will not bother to replace the intake gasket o-rings, they absolutely need to be replaced, you need to ask for them to do it.

Starters are not robust on N52 engines, The BMW N52 likes to eat starters so it is a very common failure after 80,000 miles on the 07-10 X3.


First verify your ground strap is OK, then verify your battery is OK and not 7-8 years old, only after all that I would start looking at the starter replacement. Those are the steps I took. But I also took a 4th by replacing the ignition switch for good measure.
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  #7  
Old 05-10-2015, 01:39 PM
UberXY UberXY is offline
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Had that problem for months. Replaced battery, no help. Finally, without further warning, the starter completely ceased to function one night while out. Fortunately only a free two mile AAA flat tow to home. This was at 100k miles.

About $300 for starter, about 4 hours work.
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  #8  
Old 05-10-2015, 02:01 PM
gapost gapost is offline
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Originally Posted by UberXY View Post
Had that problem for months. Replaced battery, no help. Finally, without further warning, the starter completely ceased to function one night while out. Fortunately only a free two mile AAA flat tow to home. This was at 100k miles.

About $300 for starter, about 4 hours work.
$180 - coupon for Bosch remanufactured from Advance Auto Parts.
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  #9  
Old 05-10-2015, 02:59 PM
timgray timgray is offline
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I got my BOSCH rebuild from NAPA for about $180, no Coupon needed. If 2007+ get the aluminum bolts.
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  #10  
Old 05-10-2015, 03:16 PM
gapost gapost is offline
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Originally Posted by timgray View Post
I got my BOSCH rebuild from NAPA for about $180, no Coupon needed. If 2007+ get the aluminum bolts.
I meant that the price is $180, minus any coupon you can find, which are pretty easy for Advance Auto. On their front page you can get 15% + $25 off a future order. Or right now, you can use code WD519 to get $50 off $125+
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  #11  
Old 05-10-2015, 03:17 PM
GKLCPA GKLCPA is offline
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Thanks Guys. Sage advice doing the cheaper stuff first. I'll check the grounds and the battery before proceeding.
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  #12  
Old 05-10-2015, 10:15 PM
joylove joylove is offline
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100k miles? N52 engine? slow but not extended cranking, especially after standing overnight? Maybe had a new battery in the last 12 months? Starter motor. It'll fail on the next hot day.

It's $180 for a refurb BOSCH plus 4 hours labor because the intake manifold needs to come off.

Replace the exposed perished CCV hoses for $8 at the same time to cure your idle flutter.

Last edited by joylove; 05-10-2015 at 10:16 PM.
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