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E34 (1989 - 1995)

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  #1  
Old 12-08-2012, 10:58 PM
Josh429er Josh429er is offline
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Mein Auto: 1989 BMW 535i
"brake linings"

So I was in a hurry to get to work the other day, and I got on the brakes a little hard, but not anything I havnt done before. Well right after I make the corner the car dings at me. I look down and I thought I read "BRAKE LIGHTS" I think, what the hell, really? I look down again nope "BRAKE LININGS" My heart sinks and I wonder if they really went. I was really easy on the pedal and felt no unusual spongyness. I parked my car at work and came out hours later to check it. It still says "BRAKE LININGS" The brake fluid is low but still holds pressure. I put some stuff in wondering if it just got low. Still does it.

I don't believe the message board because it randomly will tell me oil pressure sensor, oil level low, or coolant level low. Which I check just to be sure. but its wrong. The brake linings is a new trick. and a worrying one.
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  #2  
Old 12-09-2012, 03:12 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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You are driving an old car with antiquated electronics. These guys did not build the car with the next 20-30 years in mind. As you have already observed, the E34 comes up with random codes. Just delete the codes, do some damn hard braking on safe terrain, and observe that everything is fine. Obviously you already pretty much believe that it is so, which is why you are still driving the car.

This is the reason why I tell noobs to read all the codes, delete them all, drive for a few days, read codes once again, and only take action on those codes that are repeated. There are often ghost codes, old codes, whatever. Doing the delete and re-read cycle pretty much gets you the right information.

Btw, did you google "E34 brake linings" ? I did and this is what popped out.

http://www.bmwe34.net/E34main/Mainte...rakes/Pads.htm

Look at all 4 of your pads, and if they seem thin, then its time for you to change them. Consider doing your calliper seals and brake rotors at the same time to maximise your efforts. Also remember to spray paint the rotor hats black, and spray paint the callipers either black or silver. Use new lug nuts or spray paint appropriately if your old ones look too shabby. If you spray paint, do it for all the lug nuts on your wheels to maintain consistency.

Last edited by robertobaggio20; 12-09-2012 at 07:02 AM.
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  #3  
Old 12-09-2012, 08:11 AM
62rebel 62rebel is offline
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Location: Charleston SC
 
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Mein Auto: 1992 525i sportwagon
my '92 does the same thing; it's pretty smart for a 20 year old car. maybe present-day cars can be more specific and communicate better, but i don't need that. at least it's not an Audi which will seal itself into a limp-home mode for every fault or worse, just shut itself down and pout.
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  #4  
Old 12-09-2012, 08:39 AM
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BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
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Mein Auto: 1992 525i
Josh, what has likely happened is that one of your brake pads (likely a front one) has worn sufficiently to cause the brake wear sensor (located in a little slot in the brake pad) to come into contact with the rotor thereby causing the "brake lining" warning. This is not something that you can "reset". Don't be alarmed by it because when the sensor contacts the rotor, there is usually sufficient brake pad thickness to go another 3-5K miles as long as you are not abusing your brakes.

The link that Roberto posted is a good one.

Your fluid level is likely low because as the brake pads wear, the caliper piston, over time, has to move out ever so slightly to compensate for the thinning brake pad. As the piston moves outward, more fluid is used out of the reservoir to fill the void in the system caused by the piston moving outward. You will notice that, when doing your brake job, you will have to press the piston back into the caliper. This will cause the fluid to be pushed back into the fluid reservoir thus causing the level to rise again (and possibly overflow if you have topped the reservoir off prior to doing the brake job). Also, brake fluid is caustic to the paint so be very careful in protecting the paint if you wind up pushing any fluid back into the reservoir that causes an overflow situation.

One method you can use to keep from pushing the fluid back into the reservoir is to just loosen the brake bleeder screw for that caliper as you press the piston back into the caliper. The displaced fluid will go out of the bleed screw instead of being pushed back into the reservoir. Just make sure to close the bleed screw at the moment you stop pressing the piston back into the caliper. This will prevent any air from being sucked back into the line. It is unlikely that the caliper would move back out and suck in air, but it's always better to be on the safe side.

You need to remove your wheels and inspect all the pads. Look to see if any of the sensors have come into contact with a pad. The minimum brake pad thickness is 2mm. There are two sensors; one for one of the front wheels and one for one of the rear wheels.

Of note, and this is important for your sanity (at least as far as seeing error messages goes), once the brake lining sensor contacts the rotor, it has to be replaced or it will continue to cause the "brake lining" error even if you put on new pads. The sensors are not very expensive anyway.

I would not replace the rotors ($$$) unless they are horribly grooved or have thinned out beyond tolerance. If you have a heavy wallet and are not concerned about spending extra money, then by all means, get new rotors.

Bentley lists minimum rotor thickness (wear limit) as 20.4 mm (0.803 in.) for the front rotors and 8.4 mm (0.331 in.) for the rear rotors.

Good luck and replacing brake pads is a relatively easy task.
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Quote:
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It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

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1992 525i - Sold
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  #5  
Old 12-09-2012, 03:18 PM
Josh429er Josh429er is offline
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I wasn't aware of the pad level sensor. I know there getting low, but its not at a replacment point for me. I knew the fluid would be low because of pad wear. but the pedal doesn't have that much travel, I would look at it but we just got 2 inches of snow today...hopefully this week.
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  #6  
Old 12-11-2012, 12:17 PM
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Monsignor Monsignor is offline
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brake linings just means brake pads.

whe you replace the pads, replace the sensors too as they'll forever read worn linings now. inexpensives sensors so dont get all worked up
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  #7  
Old 12-13-2012, 02:18 PM
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BMWFatherFigure BMWFatherFigure is offline
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'wasn't aware of pad level sensor' - do you guys EVER read the handbook? Almost as good as the Bentley at times.
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  #8  
Old 12-13-2012, 03:28 PM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWFatherFigure View Post
'wasn't aware of pad level sensor' - do you guys EVER read the handbook? Almost as good as the Bentley at times.
They should have a light on the instrument cluster that comes on when you dont read it.

Last edited by robertobaggio20; 12-13-2012 at 09:24 PM.
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  #9  
Old 12-13-2012, 03:37 PM
paperplane94 paperplane94 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWFatherFigure View Post
'wasn't aware of pad level sensor' - do you guys EVER read the handbook? Almost as good as the Bentley at times.
There should be a message to tell the driver to read the manual...


OH WAIT!
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  #10  
Old 12-13-2012, 06:16 PM
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supertech777 supertech777 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paperplane94 View Post
There should be a message to tell the driver to read the manual...


OH WAIT!
Now that's funny

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  #11  
Old 12-13-2012, 09:26 PM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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I vote that we create a "BMWFF" light on the instrument cluster ! Sir, could you send us your preferred logo ? A 'roo with a 'rench, perhaps?

Just teasing you sir just teasing
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  #12  
Old 12-13-2012, 09:58 PM
BMWE34M20 BMWE34M20 is offline
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That happened to me after i got my car back from the mechanic and idk wat they did but my upper control arm got jacked and the tow truck driver jacked up my tie rod but i just replaced the front brake rotors and pads and message never came up again! ..... So you should inspect them and see
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  #13  
Old 12-15-2012, 01:17 AM
Josh429er Josh429er is offline
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LOL well to you guys, My car didn't come with a owners manual(yes I payed more for that option) And the first thing I did was have a deep conversation with Bentley but all he said was how to fix stuff and were to turn wrenches.
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