Electrical Problem... No power to windows and temp guage is faulty - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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#1 (permalink) Old 05-24-2011, 11:47 PM
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Electrical Problem... No power to windows and temp guage is faulty

Hello All,

I am a new owner of 1991 BMW 318i with an m50 engine swap. I just recently replaced the starter and was so happy to have my car up and running again. My ignition switch went bad so I wired a push button starter to save money over replacing the whole ignition.

Problems I am now having:

1. All windows will not roll up and down... I took a multimeter to the fuses and they all have power(fuse17 i believe is for the windows) the relays do as well. I am not getting power to any of the switches on the center console that roll up the windows though. It is like there is a wire shorted or something in between the fuse box and the window circuit or something. The light that lights up the switches is not lighting up as well, so this tells me it is electrical

2. Temperature gauge in the gauge cluster is permanently set to way hot. When I start the car it stays at cold for about 10 seconds then sky rockets to way past hot. I had my friend check it out and he said the engine isn't overheating or anything so it must be part of my electrical problem.

3. My tachometer... It starts working after I drive for a little bit, but it just sits at 0 for the first few miles and then it finally kicks in and works fine...

If anyone has any ideas of what to check or any tips that would make this easier than going through every wire and checking to see if they are connected or shorter that would be amazing. Fuses are fine, relays are fine, switch that controls the windows on and off is fine, so keep in mind it is most likely something electrical.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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#2 (permalink) Old 05-25-2011, 01:39 PM
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1. Definately a dodgy feed from the fusebox.
2. Could be the temp sensor at the radiator/cyl head or if you're unlucky, dodgy gauges/dash cluster !
3. Mine does the same, damn it lol !!!

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#3 (permalink) Old 05-25-2011, 02:31 PM
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Any idea of what wires would be dodgy? or which ones i should check first to see? trying to make this from an all day project to something easier if at all possible
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#4 (permalink) Old 05-26-2011, 02:56 PM
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How did the ignition go bad? Was it the motion of the key (mechanical), or was it no reaction (electrical) ?
If the latter then that could be where your problem is !
It could be that you have lost your "ACC" (accessory) feed...
More details please...
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#5 (permalink) Old 05-26-2011, 09:45 PM
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It was electrical, when I turned the key nothing would happen. The starter wouldn't spin or kick at all. The starter was actually bad too though, i bench tested it and it is dead as a door nail. Once i replaced it and put in the push button starter it fired right up. What is the ACC and what are some ways to check if that is the problem?
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#6 (permalink) Old 05-27-2011, 02:31 PM
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The "ACC" is the key position before ignition pre-start... First position for radio etc...
It could be that you tried, for many minutes, to start the car - that you burnt a wire or relay.
Have a REAL good look behind the fusebox if you can, and chase/check all the wiring back from the starter too !!
It is deffo electrical so get in, and intimate with that wiring loom !!!
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#7 (permalink) Old 05-31-2011, 09:12 PM
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So I had a friend who used to work at a BMW mechanic check things out for a bit and we figured out a few things.

1. The windows not working could be either due to faulty wiring in the Fuse Box, or that the circuit board in the fuse box got fried in a certain spot. He did not have time to diagnose the entire problem but we are going to check it out next week. (May have to buy a whole new fuse box which would suck) For temporary solve I just ran a wire from the hot wire that connects to the cigarette lighter to the grey/green wire that connects on the windows.(Definitely ghetto rigged, but works for the time being)

2. The temperature problem is due to a bad connection on the connector for the temperature sensor that connects to the radiator. I need to find a new one somewhere, but have had troubles locating them... Any ideas? Its a three prong connector that connects to the radiator on the passenger side.

3. As far as the tachometer goes, we are going to try and figure it out when we take apart the fuse box, but isn't really my main issue as it does work shortly after the car goes for a bit
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