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View Full Version : Weird thing happened today!?!?


JSF252
08-06-2004, 09:24 PM
Today I was on my way home from work. I turned onto the on-ramp of an expressway and started accelerating. People drive 80-85 in the slow lane, so you REALLY need to be up to speed when you merge into traffic. Well I was doing ~70ish, not really pushing the car hard, and I noticed a small pick-up that wasn't getting over... to let me in. I sped up to pass him (still on the on-ramp) and hit ~5500 rpm. As soon as the tach read 5500 there was a jerk, and a puff of black smoke. I looked down at the tach and it was on "0", as was the temp gauge, and fuel gauge. The speedo still worked fine, and the engine ran fine (didn't try and hit 5500 again, as I was 45 miles from home). After I got home, I noticed that the fan didn't work either. Somy question is... has this happened to anyone else? What would cause this? How do I fix it? I'm sure I can figure it out, but I thought some of you guys might know before I waste my time.

BTW, I checked the fuses and none are blown!?!?

Your help is MUCH appreciated,
Josh F.

bmwsmurf
08-06-2004, 11:31 PM
wierd. some guy I know has the same problem and hasn't figured it out either. except one of the fuses DID blow....

swartz
08-07-2004, 12:01 AM
im lost on that one man....good luck

bmwsmurf
08-07-2004, 01:22 AM
Keep us updated.. so we can put another "tech tip" into the vault :)

TriFlow
08-07-2004, 10:28 AM
I think I have your answer.. I have all these problems. :(

It's in the engine section one of my post called strange temp problems..

JSF252
08-07-2004, 12:27 PM
I'll check all my grounds, it might help. I know it's something electrical, as if I tap on the instrument cluster, the tach and temp gauge bounce. I'll check this today, and let you know.

Thanks guys,
Josh F.

bmwsmurf
08-07-2004, 02:08 PM
Check the ground cable on the belly of the engine.. the connection can get rusty there especially because of the location. That happened to me once.. caused the temp gauage to be a little funky and also eventually caused my battery not to charge properly as well. Stupid shop replaced my alternator before they found the problem. Pisser....

JSF252
08-08-2004, 12:00 AM
Took the ground cable loose, and sanded all the mating surfaces on the cable. After installing it, I noticed that there was a SMALL portion, right in the middle of the cable, that was frayed. It's not bad, just a few of the wires are frayed, but it might make a difference. I'm about to swap it for a different one off the parts car(s).

I decided to pull the instrument cluster to make sure nothing inside was burned or messed up. I've been planning on replacing the SI batteries for some time, so why not do it while I had the cluster out? I've just got the batteries soldered on, and waiting for everything to cool. I'll be put the cluster back in, and see if everything works.

Thanks for the help guys,
Josh F.

bmwsmurf
08-08-2004, 12:22 AM
What are the SI batteries and what do they do?

keep us posted! :thumbup:

JSF252
08-08-2004, 02:17 AM
The SI (Service Indicator) is the row of lights between the speedo and tach. They are actually toward the bottom of the cluster. They tell you (or are supposed to) when you need to change the oil. If you take your car to the Dealership to have your oil changed, they will plug a reset tool into your diagnostic port, and reset these lights to green (oil service places might have this too). If you change your own oil (like me) you can reset these lights yourself. If you wanted to try there is an article about this (I'll have to find it) procedure and how to do it. Basically you cross out to pins on the Diagnostic port and it resets (but there are some other steps involved, like turning on the ignition for a specified time).

JSF252
08-08-2004, 02:26 AM
Well,
I'm stumped!!!! I've replaced the ground, sanded all the mating surfaces. I even dipped the whole ground cable (between oil pan and engine bay) in paint thinner to remove all the embedded grease/road grime. I re-installed it, and nothing different!?!?!? So like I stated in a previous post, I replaced the SI batteries, checked the whole cluster to make sure there were no shorts or any problems. I reinstalled the cluster and nothing different?!?!? So I rechecked all the fuses, thinking I had missed one, and none of the fuses are blown?!?!
So now I'm thinking it might be a relay. Does anyone know what relay controls the cluster or heater/AC fan?
The car runs great, except I have no Tach, temp, or fuel gauges (and the fan).

I hope someone in here can give me a lead on where to look next.

Once again, thanks for the help,
Josh F.

JSF252
08-08-2004, 03:04 AM
one more thing:

Can anyone look at their fuse box and tell me which fuse if for the AC blower? Or the Relay for the AC blower?

I dont have a Haynes manual with me (I'll get mine tomorrow). Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Josh F.

TriFlow
08-08-2004, 11:34 AM
Well,
I'm stumped!!!! I've replaced the ground, sanded all the mating surfaces. I even dipped the whole ground cable (between oil pan and engine bay) in paint thinner to remove all the embedded grease/road grime. I re-installed it, and nothing different!?!?!? So like I stated in a previous post, I replaced the SI batteries, checked the whole cluster to make sure there were no shorts or any problems. I reinstalled the cluster and nothing different?!?!? So I rechecked all the fuses, thinking I had missed one, and none of the fuses are blown?!?!
So now I'm thinking it might be a relay. Does anyone know what relay controls the cluster or heater/AC fan?
The car runs great, except I have no Tach, temp, or fuel gauges (and the fan).

I hope someone in here can give me a lead on where to look next.

Once again, thanks for the help,
Josh F.
Do you drive your car in the winter??

Another commom problem for these car or for my car anyway... If you drive winters long enough your floor rusts out under your foot rest which blast the shit out of you wiring harness..


Pull up your carpet driver side and Have a good look at these..
http://groups.msn.com/_Secure/0QwDvAukSlGGAyBZZM6**FN6dYsoP!vEyV9Mj0QiMk5OtE9jpZ xF!e2*4bLf9v0NU3I8UqJTcYuWy1cNSK9eUVfOSusP*uNZtXyW 5*TASKeM/WELDED660.JPG?dc=4675477442862575230

JSF252
08-08-2004, 12:07 PM
Well,
I'm stumped!!!! I've replaced the ground, sanded all the mating surfaces. I even dipped the whole ground cable (between oil pan and engine bay) in paint thinner to remove all the embedded grease/road grime. I re-installed it, and nothing different!?!?!? So like I stated in a previous post, I replaced the SI batteries, checked the whole cluster to make sure there were no shorts or any problems. I reinstalled the cluster and nothing different?!?!? So I rechecked all the fuses, thinking I had missed one, and none of the fuses are blown?!?!
So now I'm thinking it might be a relay. Does anyone know what relay controls the cluster or heater/AC fan?
The car runs great, except I have no Tach, temp, or fuel gauges (and the fan).

I hope someone in here can give me a lead on where to look next.

Once again, thanks for the help,
Josh F.
Do you drive your car in the winter??

Another commom problem for these car or for my car anyway... If you drive winters long enough your floor rusts out under your foot rest which blast the shit out of you wiring harness..


Pull up your carpet driver side and Have a good look at these..
http://groups.msn.com/_Secure/0QwDvAukSlGGAyBZZM6**FN6dYsoP!vEyV9Mj0QiMk5OtE9jpZ xF!e2*4bLf9v0NU3I8UqJTcYuWy1cNSK9eUVfOSusP*uNZtXyW 5*TASKeM/WELDED660.JPG?dc=4675477442862575230

I wish I could say that was a problem, but I live in GA. If we get 1 inch of snow it's a big deal. So to answer the question, I've only driven in snow a couple of times, so I doubt that is a problem.

Did anyone have a chance to see what fuse/relay controlls the fan/cluster???

I dont have my Haynes yet, so I could use a little help.
Josh F.

JSF252
08-16-2004, 11:12 AM
After a couple weeks of trying to find out the problems, I finally fixed it.

I just got back from an out-of-state family reunion (picking up chicks! LOL) and decided to try and do a little more searching last night. After a while of checking and rechecking grounds, I gave up. So amidst my preparation for "Hara Kiri" I had a vision! I rechecked all the fuses, and found that #10 was blown. I know I checked it before, and you had to look extremely close to tell it was blown. So I replaced it, and "pop" it blew it as soon as I turned the key.
So I go to the BEN website and check out the fuses diagram. The #10 fuse connects a ton of things. I saw "reverse lights" on the diagram and checked it. I had already checked this, I had a problem with these wires before. One thing that needs to be noted is that the reverse light wires, run beside the tranny, and up through the rubber shift boot, into the passenger compartment. These wires fell once before, rubbing the driveshaft, and eventually rubbing throught the sheathing on he wire and grounding out on the driveshaft (this was about a year ago). So I checked these wires again to make sure they weren't rubbing anything, they weren't. So I thought..... I wonder if they are touching somwhere else? I got inside the car, and looked at these wires below the leather/vinyl boot. They had a worn spot on them, and they were grounding out inside the cabin. I isolated them, and taped them up nicely, and no more problems.
So, if anyone is having problems with the Heater \ A/C blower motor, electric mirrors, rear defroster, and/or gauges; check these wires first. It would have saved me a lot of heart ache.
Anyhow, I appreciate everyone who helped (or tried) me with this problem.

Josh F.

bmwsmurf
08-16-2004, 11:33 AM
Wow. Nice job!!!!!!
(wish I was half that good)

JSF252
08-16-2004, 11:50 AM
I appreciate it, but dont think it's because I'm a great electrician/mechanic. It's all about trial and error. I talked to countless people about this problem, especially on the BentleyPublishers.com (Bentley manuals) BMW forum. There are some really educated guys in there, but no-one knew what to tell me. I read post after post about guys with the exact same problems as I was having, but no-one ever replied with how they fixed it.
Also, if you start having these type of problems, it doesn't always mean that the back-up lights (wiring) are responsible. There were 8-10 things that the #10 fuse was responsible for. It "could" be any one of these. But I would start with the reverse light wiring, because it's in a really "problem-prone" location.

Once again, all the help was much appreciated.
Josh F.