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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 04-16-2013, 09:19 PM
mgustafson mgustafson is offline
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Location: Wisconsin
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Mein Auto: 98 528I
Bifecta help

My 98 528I appears to be suffering from the dreaded Bifecta. The ABS and ASC lights are on and the tranny will not upshift on its own into 3rd or 4th. I understand that the likely culprit is a bad speed sensor in the front, but is it the right or the left on my year that controls the tranny? Also I tried the reset trick on the tranny to get it out of safe mode and that didn't work. I hope to do the repair this Saturday, so any help is appreciated. Thank you in advance.
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  #2  
Old 04-17-2013, 08:30 AM
E39/E60 E39/E60 is offline
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Mein Auto: E39 528i
check the front passenger side mine did the same took the wheel off and the sensor was cut in half. It could possibly be driver side but almost sure passenger.
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  #3  
Old 04-17-2013, 08:52 AM
HTK12 HTK12 is offline
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No need to start guessing, just do the diode test on wheel speed sensors. It can be found in the VERY best of E39 Links.
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  #4  
Old 04-17-2013, 11:18 AM
L0F L0F is offline
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Mein Auto: 3/98 528i
I had the same issue and it was front passenger side. In many cases a visual inspection of the wiring can confirm which sensor is bad. The insulation degrades and becomes frayed shorting out the wiring and killing the sensor.

Diode testing will confirm diagnosis, but may be unnecessary depending on how far gone the sensor is ie wiring is visually ****ed.

Also, do not cheap out on a sensor. Chinese/eBay units are made to incredibly poor tolerances both physically and electrically. Crap shoot if they will work our of the box. Buy a nice German made sensor and be done with it.

Last edited by L0F; 04-17-2013 at 11:19 AM.
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  #5  
Old 04-17-2013, 07:44 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Quote:
Originally Posted by HTK12 View Post
No need to start guessing, just do the diode test on wheel speed sensors. It can be found in the VERY best of E39 Links.
Yup.

- All about DSC (1-pdf) (2-pdf) & comparisons to ASC+T (1) & how to diagnose & fix the ABS DSC (or ASC) BRAKE trifecta (1)
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Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #6  
Old 03-08-2014, 10:20 PM
kingphonsy kingphonsy is offline
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Mein Auto: 1998 E39 528i
Bifecta Fix

I can confirm that the bifecta turned out to be the front sensors. My cheap chinese sensor and my bad og sensor were probably working against each other. Changed both with good siemens and it went away immediately.
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Old 03-09-2014, 10:14 AM
mixz1 mixz1 is offline
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Location: Cancun, Mexico
 
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Mein Auto: 2000 528i Sport
Amen to only using OEM quality sensors. VDO, Siemens, Bosch.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=757860
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  #8  
Old 03-10-2014, 12:38 PM
kingphonsy kingphonsy is offline
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Mein Auto: 1998 E39 528i
so no luck for me

Apparently after I parked something changed. I drove today and the asc started flashing at 5mph and it would brake and not accelerate. I turned asc off to verify it was an issue with ASC and it began to drive and shift great.

I installed m5 rotors and calipers with SS lines and changed to used siemens sensors that passed a visual inspection.

After a mile or so the bifecta returned. I have no idea why. The brakes are wonderful btw.
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  #9  
Old 03-20-2014, 07:46 AM
mhobryan mhobryan is offline
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Location: Metro Detroit
 
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Mein Auto: 1997 528i 5 speed
I also have the Bifecta sporadically. It's become progressively better (lights would come on for a few days, then go off for a few days. Now it will be fine for a week, then come on for an hour or less of driving then go off).

Will the diode test work even if the lights are off?
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