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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all together!

I have a BMW X3 E83, 2.5i, year 2005. (I own the care now 5 years and had no problems up to now) 20 months back i did change battery, wont believe battery is bad again) But could be possible also.

Yesterday the car did not start anymore, before i never had this problem.
So my neighbor came over and wanted to give me starting help putting cables from his car to my start connection below the hood of the car. But still the car did not start at all, no move.

Even my own battery all lights in the dash go on as regular. I can even lift the windows from my battery without problem. But if i put the key to start position nothing happens.

I am a little out of ideas else then the starter would cause the problem, but how can sort out if this is really the case?

What exactly to do for making sure find out what is going on in this car. I wont like to go to the only BMW dealer in Costa Rica for the reason just to put the car into the garage and on the computer they charge $150US, for each error the eliminate on the computer of the car they charge another $60US, and then they have for parts everything double priced. So it is a pain to go to BMW Costa Rica, it costs more then it would in USA or Europe.

I hope somebody could give me good advice what to check and how, maybe a little guide with steps to follow.

Thanks so much for every comment on this post upfront.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No I dont have a other key! Only one key. This is the original key with remote control.
Doors and Windows open well with this key.
When i put the key in position one, and let the car run downhill car starts without any problem immediately at low speed.

But cant start the car with the key using the starter.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I will try tomorrow with this cables, but I did check today a look at the starter and the starter is not really easy to reach, but anyway i will give it a try.
Do you know some place else where to find the other end of this cable where i could check for the 12 Volts??
Thanks for your advice!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi swampX3,

great video link. I was under the car at the moment your video post was received. I was just try to find out how to get to the cables at the alternator to check the same as you did in your video.
Now i will proceed as you describe in your video. Will post here again what i could find out in short time.
Thanks for your help!
 

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the poke test

if you have a moment just give a sharp wack on the starter with a 1/2 inch extension on the starter body ......this is close to the same thing as rocking the X back and forth a bit with it in manual 2nd or so gear to rotate the starter a little to a better spot to crank .....this will further isolate your issue
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Ok, now i did the test as following:

1. I checked with the voltmeter at the solenoid, then i tried to start the car with the key.

Result : 11.57 Volts
Battery Voltage : 12.68 Votls

NO MOVEMENT AT THE STARTER AT ALL.

2. I measured the ground. Did hold the multi-meter to the Starters solenoid housing and on a screw in the chassis. There was a clear beep from the tester.

3. I took a wire AWG 12 to the starter 12 Volt solenoid pin, where I measured before in Step 1 the 11.57 Volts, from there direct to the battery positive.
Result:
NO MOVEMENT AT THE STARTER AT ALL
There was sparks between the wire and the screw of the solenoid.
The starter solenoid did receive at this moment full battery power direct, no movement.

I GUESS MY SOLENOID IS DEFECT.

Questions:
1. Can i test more, to make sure the starter is the problem?
2. Or is it save to say the starter is the problem?
3. Can i fix the solenoid or change just the solenoid?

Thanks for all your help.:thumbup:
The videos above gave me good advice what exact to do!:)
 

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good tests

looking much like the starter/solenoid....also ....did y'all do the wack test on the starter body with the 1/2 extension and or the rock the X back and forth a few feet in 2nd to roll the starter to a new spot and then try and crank it ????.....5 mins work for both

are all electrical connections on the solenoid and starter tight ????


maybe clean the ground ......check battery cables are clean and tight.....you're missing one volt in drop too
 

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definitive voltage drop testing/bump test/circuit check

your voltage drop is problematic .....do the tests in this ......he covers both the battery posts and posts to cable testing .....plus the bump check.....also ......do the trigger wire test exactly as he shows

https://youtu.be/dGem9YsjCRQ?t=484
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Starter is out, no surprise that the starter did not move

Yeah i did wack test on the starter body, multiple times, at one moment i had a small movement, but nothing else.
So by now i take out the starter.

This was a difficult job.
Looking on the internet i believe the best way to go is from underneath.

So i took off different protection shields, also the heat protecting around the clutch and gearbox.
Then i used a very long extension from my ratchet tool set, but this was not enough so I need to borrow a other one from the neighbor.

With this tool in place i did reach the upper female TORX above the clutch and gearbox.....
The rest was much more easy.
So the starter was out and looked like the following photos.


Defect-Starter-BMW-X3-E83-1.JPG

Defect-Starter-BMW-X3-E83-2.JPG

Defect-Starter-BMW-X3-E83-3.JPG

Defect-Starter-BMW-X3-E83-4.JPG

Tomorrow i will take the starter to a shop where they rebuild starter and see along when I am back.

Thanks for the help i got up to here. !
 

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great effort

very well done .....especially the surgery from below ! .....let's hope the shop can resurrect your starter or you can lay hands on a low cost one.....keep us posted .....best wishes
 
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