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 > 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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-07-2012, 07:58 AM
td2012 td2012 is offline
Registered User
Location: Maryland
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 6
Mein Auto: 2002 bmw 540i
540i Intermittently Stops - Alternator or Ignition Switch?

Car: 2002 540i Problem: Since last Jan., the car intermittently stops and based on feedback I've gotten here, I've driven the car for 5 months to test the theories (e.g., visor test, turn radio and seat warmers on while driving) and they do appear to impact the car. Everytime, I drive the car without turning them on, it drives FINE. But the minute I pull visor down or put seat warmer on the car idles abnormally and cuts off. Based on research on the forum, it could be 1) ignition switch or 2)alternator. My husband says ignition switch was replaced a couple of years ago but not sure it was done right. Don't trust shop used. Any ideas where to start? Dealership said they don't know what problem is after charging us $350 for diagnostics! Just yesterday, I started car and it acts like it won't start initially and then starts. Oh and red battery light flashes when I start up and turn car off. HELP!
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 09-07-2012, 08:18 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: MA
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,837
Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
Sure sounds like the ignition switch. If your alternator was really bad your engine would continue to run until the battey went dead, then it would stop and it won't start.
Spending $350 for a diag is a rip off. The switch costs less than $100 and if you are even marginally handy with tools it will take less than an hour to replace it.
I've posted pics on how to do it, if you want to tackle it I can dig them up and repost them.
__________________

2000 540/6 Slightly tweeked...everywhere

Last edited by JimLev; 09-07-2012 at 08:19 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 09-07-2012, 12:39 PM
johnstern's Avatar
johnstern johnstern is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Cape Neddick, Maine
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 1,136
Mein Auto: 2000 BMW 528iT/5, S/C
+1 on what Jim said. You could also unlock your instrument cluster

http://www.cardomain.com/ride/313409...-series/page-6

and read what the battery voltage with the car shut off & with the car running. With the car off the voltage should be 12+ volts and with the engine running (and the alternator working correctly) the voltage should be about 13.5+ volts. This would allow you to possibly eliminate the alternator as the source of your problems.

BTW-you have the high cluster on your 2002 540.

Last edited by johnstern; 09-07-2012 at 12:42 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 09-07-2012, 01:02 PM
540 M-Sport's Avatar
540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Seattle, WA
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,222
Mein Auto: 01' 540 M-Sport cdn, F355
If you end up replacing the ignition switch, make sure to get the factory one. www.autohausaz.com has a good price, but to find it for an automatic transmission, you have to have the factory part number to search for it. It will not come up by searching via car make, year, and model.

Here is the part number: 61326901962

$77 with free shipping from Autohausaz.com The one they carry is from the original equipment supplier.
__________________
Factory M-Sport package with factory installed M-tech bumpers, factory Bluetooth, factory M-Audio 10" dual voice coil subs, Homelink, M5 rear stabilizer bar, H&R 15mm spacers, Bilstein B14 PSS coil overs, Stop Tech ss brake lines, Akebono Euro Ceramic brake pads, oem Brembo and Zimmerman rotors, Dinan Stage 1 software, Strong Strut front upper stress bar.

Last edited by 540 M-Sport; 09-07-2012 at 01:11 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
alternator, idles, ignition switch, stops


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)
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 04:21 PM.


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