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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
2008 328xi wagon displays "inactive" for the TPMS. I understand there is a valve stem sensor and battery in each wheel, a transponder in each wheel well, and the RDC control unit in the back near the battery.

What I would like to do is re-code and eliminate the TPM system all together. Or find a way to stop the constant inactive light/chime that makes the car so annoying its undrivable.

I have been researching for days and have gotten mixed info on weather the TPM system on this car can be successfully turned off via coding. I've seen the remote coding adds where you trust someone to hack your car, but am leery of this route.

If anyone has a definite answer and/or a lead on how to eliminate the TPMS by re-coding it would be greatly appreciated!

I'm in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area of Minnesota FYI
 

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2008 328xi wagon displays "inactive" for the TPMS. I understand there is a valve stem sensor and battery in each wheel, a transponder in each wheel well, and the RDC control unit in the back near the battery.

What I would like to do is re-code and eliminate the TPM system all together. Or find a way to stop the constant inactive light/chime that makes the car so annoying its undrivable.

I have been researching for days and have gotten mixed info on weather the TPM system on this car can be successfully turned off via coding. I've seen the remote coding adds where you trust someone to hack your car, but am leery of this route.

If anyone has a definite answer and/or a lead on how to eliminate the TPMS by re-coding it would be greatly appreciated!

I'm in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area of Minnesota FYI
Just HOW COLD is it there at the moment?:yikes:

You sound like you have been through it thoroughly, understand the system, and are frustrated to the point of disabling it, but bear with me a moment so that the rest of us may learn from your experience. I do NOT know how to disable any warnings by coding.

1) Can you please describe any/all warning lamps or messages, and their location/color, either on the instrument cluster or CID if iDrive?

2) When did these begin and was there any change of tires or wheels before the onset?

3) Have you tried to Reset or Reinitialize the TPM, following the procedure for your vehicle as provided in the Owner's Manual or in Bentley, page 300-9?

4) Have you checked F27, the 5A fuse providing power to the RDC (F13 on my 2007 E91)?

5) Have you/a shop with BMW software, connected to the RDC (TPM Module) to determine faults?

BMW software/Scan Tool is able to determine TPM system faults, and I would suggest determining what the fault is before simply disabling the system.

George
 

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Additionally, are those the original TPMS sensors? The batteries last about 7 years, plus or minus.

There is a battery, but it's not serviceable; you have to replace the monitor itself.

You can't code it out, so you'd needed "tuning" skills and equipment.
 

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I think it would be easier just to fix the TPMS system so it works properly. I used to have leaky headlight washers(which I find totally useless) and I was told it would throw codes to try to take them offline. So I just sucked it up and replaced them. Too many signals from sensors can overload the bus in the car's computer and can lead to other spurious malfunctions, so sadly it's better just to run the car as intended.
North American BMWs are imported with a lot of luxury equipment, some of which is extraneous and would be better left off the car for longevity.
 

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I’m in the same boat right now. I even went as far as to remove the RDC from the trunk and check and see if it threw any different codes... and no.

My next steps may be to replace the TPMS sensors first (since they are old, might as well) and then move on to the RDC since that will have to be coded in. Not ideal to do guess-and-check mechanics, but I’m stumped as well.


Sent from my iPad using Bimmerfest
 

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Discussion Starter #6
No I drive. Just the yellow tire with exclamation point in it saying inactive. It happens intermittently and has nothing to do with tire pressures as I have ruled that out. It will give a proper low tire warning if I bleed one down to about 25 PSI, then goes away upon refilling the tire. When the inactive warning is on, it blinks constantly and chimes every 15 seconds or so. Why they decided it needs to alarm continuously is beyond me, just a chime or two and a dashboard light would be fine if you ask me. It honestly makes the car so [email protected]#king annoying I've stopped driving it for the most part. Happier with my 1975 GMC truck with 280K miles anyway!

The fuse for the RDC is good, All 4 valve stem sensors and batteries were just replaced due to the batteries getting really weak. They all test out good and strong now. Original rims and OE tires, no changes there.

As far as the OBD codes the only one I've been able to catch was the right rear not receiving a signal. I can never get it to an OBD reader when the warning light is on (murphy's law) and apparently it is not storing the codes to read later.

So do I change the transponders in the wheel wells at $80 each, or the RDC at $300, or both? I should probably start with the right rear transponder since that's the one trouble I have found, but at this point I almost want to just do them all and hopefully be done with it.

With my luck I'll do all 4 transponders and the RDC to have the problem continue because the wiring harness has a short somewhere.

I miss the old days when you didn't need a laptop to get the hood open!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Bocabimmer, I have been told that the RDC is plug and play, no coding required to swap.
Not true?

Also when I try reseting via the turn signal menu, it wont, just says inactive.
 

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...Also when I try reseting via the turn signal menu, it wont, just says inactive.
Here's what Bentley says:

TPM, reinitializing in instrument cluster
- Start engine, but do not drive off.
~ Working at turn signal lever:
***8226; Toggle button 1 up or down to scroll through instrument cluster
menu items.
***8226; When INIT appears, press button 2 (BC button) to select it.
***8226; Press and hold button 2 (BC button) for approx. 5 seconds until
INIT is displayed with check box. TPM is now ready for
initialization. If no check box appears, TPM cannot be initialized
due to a fault. Diagnose system using BMW scan tool or
equivalent.


So if you do NOT have BMW software (don't know if you need INPA, ISTA or what) you need to have a shop that can connect with the TPM Module determine what faults are stored. They may be there even if the tire icon is NOT on the instrument cluster at the moment. Call a good Indy or Dealer & ask. Better than throwing all new parts at it (as you say, may be a wiring fault).

George
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So getting off topic here, if I have a PC/non-apple laptop and some of these free software downloads I've been seeing, along with the right cable, I can read these myself correct?
Is this fairly easy or kind of a pain? Any input?
Thanks guys!
 

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So getting off topic here, if I have a PC/non-apple laptop and some of these free software downloads I've been seeing, along with the right cable, I can read these myself correct?
Is this fairly easy or kind of a pain? Any input?
Thanks guys!
In theory, you can:

1) get a K+Dcan Cable such as that supplied by BimmerGeeks for $45:
https://www.bimmergeeks.net/product-page/bimmergeeks-pro-cable

2) Get access to a free Download of BMW Tools by going to the last page of the following thread and asking Shawn Sheridan to send a PM:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=638188&page=456

3) Dealing with the issues in downloading large files (10GB+) from MEGA, including the DATEN file for E89 (what E9x models use).

4) Following somewhat intricate installation instructions (also provided in the downloads), and

5) Hopefully NOT having to buy the Rosetta Stone German course :)

I'm starting on step 4 of that journey myself. NOT easy, but hopefully "DOABLE"

Forgot to mention the "biggie":

6) Add ISTA:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1023698

Now OBDWiz from Amazon ($45) is a basic OBDII code reader/clearer that can be installed and learned in an hour or two and used on ANY vehicle sold in US since 1996, BUT it can't access modules other than DME (primary Engine Module).

Since it's a little too cold for golf in MN right now, I'd say go for it!!!:thumbup:

George
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the info George! I think I might start down that path.

To be clearer about above post when the inactive light is off and all is well the above mentioned procedure to reset the TPMS does work.

When the "Inactive" warning suddenly starts, the above procedure does not work it chimes at you and reads "Inactive" again.

I have been driving it more and it is still random, have noticed it come on for only a couple of seconds then go off, that's new.

I'll get to the bottom of it someday, keep you posted...
 

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...when the inactive light is off and all is well the above mentioned procedure to reset the TPMS does work. When the "Inactive" warning suddenly starts, the above procedure does not work it chimes at you and reads "Inactive" again.

I have been driving it more and it is still random, have noticed it come on for only a couple of seconds then go off, that's new.
Sounds like an intermittent bad connection, which occurs less frequently when vehicle is used. BMW software might NOT be of assistance unless you were testing it during inactive or non-functioning status. Probably should just use TIS, follow the circuit, identify each connector (particularly those under the vehicle, subject to road salt, etc.) and open/clean contacts of each connector. I'd start with the Antenna, and then the wheel-well transmitters.

There is ALWAYS a chance of an intermittent fault in the module (perhaps bad solder joint on a circuit board?) but an hour of "disconnect & clean" might well solve the issue.

George
 

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Discussion Starter #13
An update, although its no solution. So after a few more random episodes of the constant audible alarm and constant yellow flashing tire/exclamation point symbol, one day it finally went to a solid symbol (the small yellow tire/exclamation higher in the cluster) and the audible alarm stopped as well, this was a first. I then did a tpms reset through the turn signal menu and it and went away (in the past it always said inactive when I tried this), it's been over 2 weeks now with no issues.

I know it sounds odd but it's almost like it got "stuck" in the initial warning mode when the bell chimes and wanrnings flash, and then finally went to the normal idiot light warning mode. Either way it seems to have cured itself for now. I never did try to get any more ODB codes although I should have after the light went solid. I never really did solve anything but appreciate the help and replies, hopefully it doesn't return.

Back to loving my first ever BMW!
 
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