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You Lick It, You Own It
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here's something i think we should all do. start a FAQ since these questions seems to pop up every... oh.. 6-12 days?? here's a start...
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Cup Holders

yes, it's a great car but NO, the cup holders work as well las LBJ's legs.

you got 4 choices:

1: get OEM so look around ebay since most dealer's price is kind of a rip though not always.

2: http://ultimatecupholders.com <-- great cup holders which holds a varity of cup sizes. my only gripe is that if you get a drink with a lid, the carpet might catch it and if you go around a turn, the drink will spill out and all over the carpet.

3: http://www.tecaccessories.com <-- again, a great cup holder but it's more of a 12 oz beer..., i mean soda, can holder. anything else is pushing it. if you drive an auto, this works great. if you have a manual, well.. it kinda gets in the way but nothing double jointed bad.

4: leave it broken and just ignore it.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
M5 exhaust on a 540

Can it be done? yes? do you really want it done? that's up to you. do you REALLY feel like HAMMERING (note the capitalization) your FULL tire well a bit to wedge the passenger side in? or you can just cut it and invert the cut part so you'd end up with a pretty, yet wedged, spare tire well.

Can you OEM spare tire still fit? yeah, i suppose. where it would normally sit? never seen it but something tells me the answer is no, not really. it could be just a centimeter (yeah, gotta conform with the world guys, sorry USA'ers) off to the left (hey, i'm a righty OK!) but nothing detrimental.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Angel Eyes

for angle eye upgrades, you can go either with Umnitza and their predator lights or with OE Hellas from http://eurosportdesign.com/headlights.htm

predator lights are thicker and brighter... almost 10 folds brighter. the draw back? the eletrical wiring is questionable when they start to fail and it's to my personal experience that it was the connectors failing. i had to take the connector apart and solder them to make sure they'll fire up right the first time every time.
some also say the look cheapens the look of the 5. some say it looks rice but this is all opinions and they are like assholes...

OE Hellas are nice. fits well, projects a bit tighter and just built better overall though i really wish they made the rings light up white to match the xenons. the other drawback is the price. they are going to cost you but you get what you pay for so weigh your thoughts carefully and choose wisely.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Radiator that'll make you blow your top

You say your radiator blew up on you? you notice that "CHECK COOLANT LEVEL" on the OBC now? does your 5 look like it took a leak over night in the garage and didn't wipe up? that would be the uber weak cooling system bmw's seems to have not yet master (on top of the electrical).

what to do you say? well, if you notice a leak, take care of it quick! if you just had it done and it still leaks, check the gaskets unless you have a Geba water pump. Yes, Geba will not only look tougher but will leak on you in a few thousand miles (ask me how i know). the system doesn't leak and shouldn't.

if your radiator blew up, don't go cheap. it's a BMW, drop the extra coin for the expansion tank (that's in line to let you down) and the water pump as well as the thermostat. get them all at once. where to get? that's up to you but definitely run down to the dealer and get the water pump gasket. i used one in the box (could have just been because it's made by Geba) and it leaked from the get-go. pretty sweet huh?

let's start with the radiator. you can go with a Behr which is OE. nothing really wrong with it except it's made of plastic and it'll let you down agian... guaranteed. but the price of it isn't so bad so spring one if you like. it comes with ridges in the neck to give it an extra "grip" so the pipe doesn't just slide off.
you can also spring for a Nissen (not Nissan and not the brand that makes noodles) radiator. Some say they are made better but it's still plastic. the radiator neck is smooth then ribbed so some say in certain conditions, the upper radiator hose *might* slip off. who knows, it could just be crappy workmanship or the truth. either way, it's something to think about. the longevity of this "aftermarket" radiator is said to be above OE but some have doubts.
if you are in true baller status and really want to make sure the radiator is a thing of the past, you can fork over a nice coin for this:
http://www.zionsvilleautosport.com/...&Product_Code=NP-ALLOYRAD39&Category_Code=AR1

it's a lot more then the cost of a Behr or Nissen but it'll never ever let you down EVER again.

so now you'll need an expansion tank. it's that extra canteen looking thing humped on the radiator. yes, it too is made of plastic and it too will fail on you. There's OE's which will work fine since you are going to replace the radiator with the expansion tank all at once so might as well fork over the cash for it; don't get cheap on this, your motor is dependent on this like you are with your liver; sure you can live with 1/2 a liver but do you really want to?
again, if you are a baller and really have no patience for things failing over and over again, get a Lexus... Just kidding! if you are tired of servicing your cooling system, here's the package made just for you:
http://www.zionsvilleautosport.com/...=6134&Product_Code=E389SDCK&Category_Code=CCS

yes, the price says it all but you know what? you're NEVER EVER going to post: "i got stuck because of my radiator".

so we covered the radiator and the expansion tank. 2 very critical components and like death and taxes, will definitely fail on you. you should also look into the water pump. the OE pressed aluminum foil impeller is good to be used as a home made spinner firework. you do have some choices but i will say this: NOT GEBA. E36 guys have had hell with them and so have I. it was too late for me though. i bought it and half way thru the install i read about a post noting the failure rates of Geba water pump. There's other out there that you can get is very good news. Graf is the OE replacement and it serves it's purpose, pump water around the block. it's OE so you're still going to get the pressed aluminum foil quality impeller but think of it this way: it was working fine so why re-invent the wheel. if it worked before, it should work again. nothing wrong to think like that and many have gone this route. there are other options as far as water pumps since the price could make the difference. Laso is another water pump out there. built of the same quality, it serves it purpose and serves it well. neither of them are price too far from each other so it's a matter of personal preference. A new contender that i never heard of but it's been raved by the fanatical Volvo owners (those who own a true Volvo, before Ford took over and as much as i hate to stereotype, they are truly into getting quality parts because anything less then perfect will freak them out, maybe that's why they don't own a BMW) is the brand: Hepu. it could be found here:
http://www.autopartswarehouse.com/mmp/bmw~540i~water_pump~parts.html

it's a bit more (like $20... just skip out on your kid's allowance for a week or something) but i'm going to try it out and report back.

thermostat is a thermostat is a thermostat unless you go for the cooler popping ones but that's a special case and i'm not going to cover it. this part isn't expensive and they are usually priced all the same (give or take).
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Tires

God, where do i begin with this... tires are like girls. everyone's got the favorite and no matter how hot the other girl is, someone will never defer from their tried-and-true girl. with that being said, here's some thread for you to think about.

Best Tire thread

Review on Toyo Proxy 4's

New kid on the block: Fusion

the thing with tires is what are you looking for? max performance all the way or give or take some? i'm running Michelin A/S's because I live in NJ and the weather is like my gf's attitude: unpredictable. We can have a warm front in November and out of no where a snow storm and back to a warm spell so I personally use A/S tires to be better prepared for this.

if you live in TX or FL or SoCal where snow is something you see on TV and read in books, max performance tires would be your Huckleberry. i wouldn't run anything but max performance if i lived there. remember, these are strictly my opinion and some still would run A/S because it does snow in Dallas I hear.

read sagaciously and just remember: you and everyone in your car's life is on those 4 tiny patches of rubber.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Oh No, my O2's!

So instead of heading over to the dealer and bend over for the O2's, Autozone carries the Bosch PLUG AND PLAY (very important since others sell GENERIC ones that you need to SPLICE into the harness and that's just a glutton for pain and punishment).

it may not be in stock but give it a few days and they'll get it in. i'm not 100% sure about other E39's but for 540's the Bosch part # is: 13 559. They run for $65 (plus tax if applicable). sure beats the $135 dealer charges for the same damn part.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Buttplug?? No, i said Sparkplug!

Ever start the car first thing in the morning (or when the block is cold) and when you start to drive off the car spudders a bit and only when the car warms up a bit does it run smooth from a dead stop? well, it's your buttplug..i mean sparkplug.

these should be changed with inspection I and II but hell, who's counting?

My source for the OE replacement at the cheapest price is at:
www.sparkplugs.com
part #:
BKR6EQUP
discount code:
nicoclub thanks to, well, you guessed it, NICO club (for those that don't know it's Nissan/Infiniti forum)

this is for NGK plugs BTW.

i orded 8 for the 540 and total FINAL price (included shipping) was $67.01

some other sites are going to cost about the same but they all do the same. the other sites might be forum sponsors so do buy it from them if you can/want to spring the extra dough. i bought mine before finding all this out or i would have supported the sponsors for a few bucks more. i'm cheap but when it comes those who make this place possible, i'm all for it.
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Batteries ARE included... ooo..

so you got issues starting, running and all the electrial stuff is going googlie eyed on you. guess what? it's either your alternator or battery. most likely it's the battery.

head over to your autozone (hey, they are more then just for O2's) and pick up a Duralast 49-DL. Secret about car batteries: there's only 3 manufactures and all are about the same; Duralast is made by Johnson Control which also makes Diehard, Interstate and Optima . don't spring for anything more like Optimas unless you are going to compete in audio show which then you'll need special batteries but for everyday Joe, Dick and Bob, the Duralast is your winner. And at about $65 (i think.. could be $67 but not over $100 plus tax), it's the winner by a HUGE margin.

save some ducks and take yourself out to a good dinner with the $65 you just saved then going to a dealer for a battery.
 

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aka Turd Ferguson
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1,406 Posts
Dash Pixels fix?

What is the best exhaust for my car?

Does a strut bar help the car at all?

How can I get more bass in my 540 audio?

Will 20" rims fit on my E39? Will it rub? Do I have to roll my fenders?

How can I get clear corners on my 2001 and newer E39?

M5 front and rear bumper conversion?
 

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Question Does DME gets reset when you disconnect the battery >few minuates?

Answer: Yes, indeed, so you'll loose the DME adaptation settings.

Note: For those with VF Engineering supercargers with GIAC DME software, this means you'll loose GIAC adaptation settings as well. And according to GIAC and VFE, they recommend breaking in the software for next ~100 miles. And that means, take it easy for next ~100 miles, nothing fancy RPM'ing. That's all.
 

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Question: What's the authorative way of removing the stock leather e-brake handle?

Answer: The definitive (without the need to breaking any sweat), the simplest way is to pre-heat the handle with the blow dryer first. If you have heated to a point where you can twist the handle 360 degrees, then you are home free. At that point, just twist, and pull it out. Using this method, no need for iron pumping for weeks in advance only to find you are still yanking the handle after a week. No need for WD-40. No need to bust the handle with a utility knife. Apparently there's bit of clue with form fitting of the handle that makes it so darn difficult to remove in any other way.
 

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just havin a heart attack
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2,741 Posts
I'll add some stuff about teh ///M audio upgrade that i've found. Credit goes to anyone who found info on it.

The details for the connectors are

61.13-1 378 136 This is the 12 pin connector to go to the DSP sub connection. 1 of these.
61.13-1 378 132 This is the 4 pin connector to connect to the M subs. 2 of these.
61.13-1 376 193 This is the part number for the pin (1.0 - 2.5mm2) to fit both housings. 16 of these.

I purchased the subs through www.bmaparts.com, speak to Patrick ONLY. I paid $205 per sub. I have a 9/97 production 540i 6-spd with DSP, and i had to drill my own holes. I must add that this was a huge pain.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hmmm . . . my notes are not quite as crisp as they seemed at the time:

Based on color coding of the wires, I have the following associations between the drivers and the wires in the connector, including polarity:

Rear left voicecoil 1 + yellow/red - gray/brown
Rear left voicecoil 2 + blue/white - blue/brown
Rear right voicecoil 1 + yellow/white - yellow/brown
Rear right voicecoil 2 + yellow/black - yellow/gray

I also think I use the wiring diagrams at http://www.bmwtips.com/ as reference. The connector my wires go into is a 12 pin connector, with the outside pins unused.

If you look at the attached picture, the following pin pairs each power 1 voicecoil:

5-4 3-2
11-10 9-8

(the subs are each have dual 8 ohm voicecoils)

Hope that helps.

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I have folding seats and the sunshade...and i have a nasty rattle that seems to be caused by the sunshade because it goes away when i raise it. So if you have a sunshade, and a cure for this rattle, PLEASE let me know!
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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14,417 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
M-tech/M5 bumper conversion

So everyone wants to know where and how much.... well..
Tony Downs
800-624-5410 Ext. 10
[email protected]
www.bekkers.com

seriously wonder how he does it since his kits does include fog lights!!! yeah...

give him a call and he'll take care of ya... tell him dan sent ya. no affiliation but from all shopping experience i've had, he's got what it takes.
 

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Sunshade Rattle

Is there a cure for my rear sunshade rattle when I turn up the bass?

Here is a possible solution courtesy of the m5board.com. Link to post and another one

whatheheck at m5board.com said:
tomlavelle at m5board.com said:
M audio either doesn't have speakers under the grills in the rear doors or they're inoperable. I'm not happy with the rear package shelf rattle on deep bass with my non-M audio setup (I have the power rear shade which I've read contributes to this rattle) so I'm looking forward to upgrading the rear subs and fixing this rattle.
I just upgraded my rear speakers. Replaced the stock crappy Nokia Speakers and replaced them with Boston Acoustics S55 and Polk Audio db1000 tweeters. An excellent upgrade. Part of the reason for the upgrade is to fix the darn rattle in the rear shelf.

Sorry I havent gotten around to making my post with pictures on how to remove and replace the rear speakers and fix the rattles but I hope to do that soon.

Here's a quick summary. Replace your rear speakers if they are stock. The difference is very noticeable as Nokia makes crappy speakers. The Boston Acoustics and Polk Tweeters costs $200.00 total and they sound much much better.

Rattles in the rear deck: and I have the electric rear sunshade. ALL the screws in the rear shelf were loose! (I have the M-Audio) The subwoofer screws are loose, the electric rear sunshade nuts were loose, and so as the other screws in the rear shelf.

So I removed all the screws and nuts, applied locktite to all the threads, reinstalled and retightened all screws, and voila! NO MORE RATTLES even in loud volume cranking up the subwoofers.

I will post pictures soon of my upgrade.

Dan
whatheheck at m5board.com said:
Sorry I forgot to add this important info. If you have no plans on replacing your stock rear speakers and just want to fix the darn rattle caused by the electric rear sunshade mounting nuts being loose - you dont have to remove the rear deck!

Go inside your trunk and lay down looking up to the bottom of the rear deck. You will find 4 nuts that holds the electric rear sunshade to the rear deck spread across the deck. I will bet you will find these nuts loose almost coming off. Remove the nuts completely, apply locktite to the nuts, reinstall and retighten. But dont overtighten or you risk stripping the threads.

Hope that helps.

Dan Loyola
 

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You Lick It, You Own It
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