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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 08-29-2013, 02:29 AM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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Another ABS problem thread. (I have searched)

My problem: When the ABS module is plugged in, the pump stays running. Once the car is turned on the gauge cluster works for a few seconds, and then stops and the temp gauge pegs full hot. I also get the light trifecta.

The ground next to the air box is clean and tight.

I have read it could possibly be the ABS relay stuck closed since my ABS pump runs constantly when the module is plugged in. My question is, which relay is the ABS relay? All the labeled photos I have found online are for the 528, and I have a 99 540i. Once I locate it, can someone point me to a tutorial on how to test the relay.

I'd like to rule out every possible issue before having my module rebuilt.

I have been searching forums, google, and youtube, for the past 3 days, and I can't find any info on the exact problem I am having. It's hard to believe, considering how many posts there are on the subject. I think I have typed in every variation and wording I can think of, and the 2 solutions I have found are to clean the ground connection next to the air box, or stuck ABS relay. Posting this thread is my last resort, so please bear with me.
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  #2  
Old 08-29-2013, 02:53 AM
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mjalloul11 mjalloul11 is offline
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Mein Auto: 1996 528i 1999 MB c240
I think the ABS relay is in the ECU box, but cant be sure. Try pulling them one by one and see what happens to the ABS.
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  #3  
Old 08-29-2013, 05:29 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codytheoutlaw View Post
which relay is the ABS relay?
Typing /relay F3 in the VERY best of E39 Links thread nets this, which you appear to already possibly have found:
- One user's attempt at locating and snapping a picture of every single fuse & relay in the BMW E39 (1)

According to that thread, the ABS relay "should" be in the passenger-side engine ebox; but, as you noted, we only see cn90's 528i pictured there.

So, even if that thread doesn't help you directly, when you finally do find the 99 540 ABS relay, please snap a photo so the next person won't have the trouble you are having.
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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

Last edited by bluebee; 08-29-2013 at 05:30 AM.
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2013, 11:28 AM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjalloul11 View Post
Try pulling them one by one and see what happens to the ABS.
That's probably what I will end up doing. The reason I didn't do that to begin with is that I already have the module out, and I was hoping I could locate it without putting it back in.
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  #5  
Old 08-29-2013, 12:04 PM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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The 540 has 4 relays in the ECU box: blue, light green, beige, and orange. I was looking in the car and found a blue relay in the door with some fuses, and since I bought the car with this issue, I'm going to assume the blue relay goes to the ABS, and has already been changed. I knew he had tried to troubleshoot it, but I wanted to make sure nothing was overlooked.

Module Masters charges $300 to rebuild the modules, there are 2 places on eBay that charges $125 and $95, and new modules are selling for $415 on eBay. What are your experiences with having your modules rebuilt? I read there is about a 25% chance that our modules can be repaired, so I'm not sure if I want to go through the hassle when I can just buy a new one for a couple hundred more.
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  #6  
Old 09-05-2013, 11:45 AM
bagodonuts68 bagodonuts68 is offline
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I've used BBA remanufacturing in Mass for my rebuild. ...comes with a lifetime warrantee. I just found out that my 3-light problem is not rooted in my module. where else do i look?
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  #7  
Old 09-05-2013, 02:08 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Save money.

Type /options F3 in the bestlinks.

This comes up instantly:
- Summary of all known ABS control module rebuilder options & new suppliers with prices (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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  #8  
Old 09-05-2013, 02:09 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codytheoutlaw View Post
The 540 has 4 relays in the ECU box: blue, light green, beige, and orange.
Would you kindly post a picture of those relays to the aforementioned relay thread?
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  #9  
Old 09-06-2013, 11:03 PM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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If I get back into the ecu box, I'll snap some pics.
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  #10  
Old 09-09-2013, 11:32 PM
Firefighter3244 Firefighter3244 is offline
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Here's a photo of the box. Hope it helps. ( Prev. Owner )


( I made a thread before I found out it was an abs issue thinking it was an dme issue. But then I found the abs unit acting up )

Last edited by Firefighter3244; 09-09-2013 at 11:40 PM.
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  #11  
Old 09-10-2013, 01:02 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefighter3244 View Post
Here's a photo of the box.
That's good information, which confirms there are only 4 relays in the 540:
Quote:
Originally Posted by codytheoutlaw View Post
The 540 has 4 relays in the ECU box: blue, light green, beige, and orange.
So, the only thing left to identify are the purpose of each of those relays:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > Picture & amperage & description of every single fuse & relay in the BMW E39

Do we know the purpose of those four relays in the older 540i?
Here's just a guess - but I don't have a 540i to check against:
  • blue = K? = ?
  • light green = K6300 ? = DME Relay ?
  • beige = K94 ? = wiper motor relay ?
  • orange = K6304 ? = Secondary Air Pump Relay ?
Photo is of JimLev's 2000 540i 6 speed ebox:
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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

Last edited by bluebee; 09-10-2013 at 01:07 AM.
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  #12  
Old 09-14-2013, 07:00 PM
bagodonuts68 bagodonuts68 is offline
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prices are coming down on module rebuilds
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  #13  
Old 09-14-2013, 10:39 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bagodonuts68 View Post
prices are coming down on module rebuilds
IIRC, I paid $105 about three or four years ago.
They are still about $100 nowadays, so, I guess they dropped a bit.
Of course, you have to shop around, but that's covered in the threads:
- What are all known options when your ABS control module is bad (1)
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  #14  
Old 10-03-2013, 12:34 AM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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I sent my module off to BBA, and it turns out it is not able to be rebuilt. I checked the inventory of one of the local junkyards and they have two 1999 5 series in stock, so my plan is to go buy them both if they are still there and plug them in and see what happens. My main concern is the speedometer, but if the ABS is fixed in the process, that would be a bonus.
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  #15  
Old 10-03-2013, 11:47 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codytheoutlaw View Post
I sent my module off to BBA, and it turns out it is not able to be rebuilt. I checked the inventory of one of the local junkyards and they have two 1999 5 series in stock, so my plan is to go buy them both if they are still there and plug them in and see what happens. My main concern is the speedometer, but if the ABS is fixed in the process, that would be a bonus.
If you do get a new or used abs, you may wish to contribute to this thread:
what happens if you don't code your VIN into a new/salvage ABS control module (1)
__________________
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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  #16  
Old 10-03-2013, 12:01 PM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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I was able to get one of the modules for less than $13. It came out of a 99 528i auto, and my car is a 99 540i 6 speed. I'll let you guys know what happens when I plug it up. Like I said earlier, all I really want fixed is my speedometer. Anything else will be a bonus.
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  #17  
Old 10-03-2013, 01:36 PM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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Auto/MT DSC modules are interchangeable BUT will need coding or you'll get the DSC light. Speedo, cruise, ABS should work though, if module is good.

Last edited by pshovest; 10-03-2013 at 02:30 PM. Reason: technical correction
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  #18  
Old 10-03-2013, 11:20 PM
codytheoutlaw codytheoutlaw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pshovest View Post
Auto/MT DSC modules are interchangeable BUT will need coding or you'll get the DSC light. Speedo, cruise, ABS should work though, if module is good.
This is correct. All functions have been restored other than DSC, so if you put a module out of a auto trans 528i into a 540i 6 speed, it will work other than DSC. Now I just have to keep my eyes peeled for one out of a manual trans car. I'm glad I was able to mostly resolve this for $13.
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