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Old 05-17-2013, 12:22 PM   #1
Sublime
1st Gear Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Mississauga
Posts: 21
328xi Cable Recall fixed, but Car won't start.

Hi Guys,

I am a long time lurker, but a first time poster so please forgive me if this is in the wrong section of this forum. I thought given your guys extensive knowledge about BMW's, you can help give me some insight into my own problem.

I had purchased a 2008 BMW 328xi last year May, and just recently got the cable recall done from a local BMW dealership (Budd's BMW). After the recall was done for the battery cable, my car has been very hesitant to start at times. For example, it would choke and struggle really hard when I start the car sometimes. Other times, it would be perfectly fine. I didn't think much of this until recently. Yesterday, I went to start my car and when i started it, I got a battery sign on my display. I didn't know what to make of it, so I turned off the car, figured perhaps it was best not to drive off and get stuck somewhere. So after waiting five minutes, I decided to try to see if it was really the battery that was dying or something else had triggered this sign. When i tried to start my car, It simply would not start. I could not push down on the brake to start the car for a good one to two minutes. Finally after sometime, the car started. Once the car started, I got a service sign with 8000 KM ( It was saying before that some service was due at 8000km, but no service sign came, nor did that triangle with the explanation mark come). Everything on the car was reset. The entire computer reset itself. My dates, time, average, fuel consumption everything. After this happened I turned off the car once again and tried it again to see if i could make it home or if i would need to call a tow truck... Once I started my car again, there was no Warning sign, or any service sign. What is more striking is that, there was no battery sign either! I drove the car home and started it after one hour, and got no signs nothing! I am not sure what this is...

I called my dealership to see if they could check if perhaps a lose connection was causing the problem. I figured if it was the battery, the car simply would not start if it was weak. I am new to BMW's so I am taking a wild guess at the problem. Can anyone give me any idea on what the problem could be? My dealership is saying its the battery, and given it is a 2008 car and the battery has not be changed it may very well be. I need to know if it is the battery because I want to get it changed immediately. My dealership unfortunately is giving me a service appointment for JUNE 3rd!!! I Can't believe that I have to wait 3 weeks for my car to be looked at! So if it is the battery, I was thinking about taking to a local shop, such as bimmersport. What do you guys suggest?
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Old 05-18-2013, 02:05 AM   #2
jabela
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Lesson #1 is to avoid the dealer at all costs.
I'm not familiar with E9X BMWs, but it does sound like a bad battery or alternator.
You're battery should be okay at 5 years, but if it was completely drained a couple times, it could be ruined.

If your can drive your car, go to partsource and they will let you test your battery for free with their tester. If you can't drive, take the battery out and bring it there. I think they may have an alternator tester as well.
Or, if you have a voltmeter you can check the battery with the car off. It should be 12.4-12.6V.
When the car is on, you should measure 13.8-14.2V.

Another option is to access your car's hidden info menu. Menu 9 should show your voltage.
http://e90.wetpaint.com/page/BC+hidden+menus
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b27xphmTJw

Now don't get a new battery at the dealer. Get it from Partsource, or crappytire, or walmart or wherever. They'll have one that will fit.
It's super easy to do. If you're not up to changing your car battery, have an independent shop do it, or a friend.
I repeat... do not, ever, ever go to the dealer. Even if money is of no concern to you, they will waste your time and put your appointments behind new BMW buyers.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:46 PM   #3
damameke
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,369
^^ It was a recall , so it has to be done by the dealer.

Was it just a coincidence that you have a starting issue after the battery cable recall
or was it something that screwed up after the cable was replaced?

I wouldn't wait till June 3 to have this look at if the issue is with the recall.. once you have this rectify and if the car is not under warranty, go to any of the sponsored garages in here...
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Old 05-19-2013, 12:30 AM   #4
Sublime
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Mississauga
Posts: 21
Well from what I have learned from this forum, the dealers are not the best place to go too. I use to go there because I was under the impression that the only people I could trust my BMW with were the dealers themselves. I didn't know of any reputable independent shops until I had found this forum. And like damameke had said, the only reason why i did go to the dealership last time was for the recall and unfortunately a flat tire. You wouldn't believe that they charged me 800$ for 2 Continental Run Flat Tires. After I had realized that I had been ripped off, I made it sure I wouldn't return again.

However, After this incident I had, I decided to call them because it seem to me it was the cable. I had a friend come and check the voltage on the battery. He is familiar with BMW's and is a mechanic. He saw the voltage to be fine. I had checked the hidden menu for the voltage, and I saw that when the car was running, the voltage was between 14.5-14.7. So I do not think it is the battery. I also don't think it was the alternator either. If it was either one of those that had died, the car simply would not be able to start. Once the battery life is dead, the battery is dead. If the alternator dies, it doesn't all of a sudden start to work. Till this date, I have no had a single battery sign, or a warning service light come on. It has been now 2-3 days after the incident. I have driven the car over 60-70 km after the incident and got no problem. I have even had the radio, fan everything running to put pressure on the battery. Still working fine. I am thinking of taking it into bimmersport to see if they can confirm for me if it is the cable or something else. That way if it is the cable, I can get my dealership to fix it for me free of cost. Otherwise I'd have to pay 140$ for labor and what not!

Any idea's why this happen? has this happen to anyone else? Any suggestions on what should be done?
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Old 05-20-2013, 10:59 AM   #5
Sublime
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Update

I was looking at e90post.com and I noticed that some other members on that forums are experiencing issues after the cable battery recall. So it could be that the battery cable that was changed was not changed properly or it is a defective cable. I will keep you guys posted when I get my car checked out.
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Old 05-20-2013, 08:51 PM   #6
damameke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sublime View Post
Update

I was looking at e90post.com and I noticed that some other members on that forums are experiencing issues after the cable battery recall. So it could be that the battery cable that was changed was not changed properly or it is a defective cable. I will keep you guys posted when I get my car checked out.
Suggest that you print some of those posts and bring it to show the dealer...
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Old 05-21-2013, 04:31 PM   #7
tofubomb
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Hmm, this seems to be an interesting issue. I was looking to go in for the recall fix too but I'll wait a bit and see what you're results are :S
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Old 06-10-2013, 12:57 PM   #8
Sublime
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***UPDATE***

So as you guys know, I was suppose to take my car to the dealer on JUNE 3rd and I did take my car there. Here is an update of what happened.

I took my car in, the dealer's Service Adviser tells me that bringing it into the shop to get checked up would be waste my money and time as well as there as it only happen once ever since and therefore I should monitor it. He told me that they would look at it but "aren't sure to find anything". I Told the adviser that I wanted them to look at it because it may be due to anything. After agreeing to it, they actually looked at it.

After looking at it, they decided that there was no faults and as such they didn't know what the problem was. They decided to check the battery. So they decided to keep the car with them for 2 days. While the car was with them, they had charged the battery overnight and had told me that my battery was coming out to be 9.5 V after charge. According to them to "PASS" the battery, the battery needed to be 9.6V. They also said the battery still has 79% charge left and it could die or do the same thing if the car were to sit for long or if there were a number of short trips. He also said that this is the reason why my car struggles to start.

After it took them that long, I decided not to change my battery as I didn't believe that's what the problem was. Long story short, I got a call a few days later from them apologizing for not being able to diagnose the problem. The dealer says to me its not because of the battery cable change.

I am planning to take it somewhere else now. I was thinking BIMMERSPECIALIST because they are the closest to me. What do you guys think I should do? I want to get this and the rough start/vibrations i get in my e90 during start up checked out. From what I have read on this forum, that shop seems to be good.
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Old 06-10-2013, 02:24 PM   #9
jabela
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If your battery is reading 9.5V, then it's dead. Maybe you heard them wrong? It should be around 12V when off.
If it's a serviceable battery, you can make sure the cells are filled with distilled water, then buy an intelligent battery charger from canadian tire and let it charge for a couple days.

I recently just had my alternator burn out, which drained my battery causing weird things to happen. I had to fill my cells and charge it for 2 days to get it back to health. Good news is the battery tester at Partsource said it was reading over the rated CCA. Probably because I just took it off the charger.
Partsource will test your alternator and battery for free.
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Old 06-10-2013, 02:25 PM   #10
jabela
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Location: Toronto, ON, Canada
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However, my bet is that you have a loose ground wire. Probably around where they replaced your original. Don't trust the dealer to fix anything.
If you're handy, inspect and tighten all battery cables. If you're not, bimmerspecialist can do it for you.
Good luck.
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