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3-Series (E46, E90) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.

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Old 12-18-2010, 09:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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electric steering wheel lock won't disengage

I have a 2006 330i. Approximately one month ago I changed the battery in my comfort access fob. Ever since I did that, I have episodes where the electric steering wheel lock engages (an icon appears on the dashboard) once I enter the car and I am unable to start the vehicle. Moving the steering wheel does not help. The only thing that works is to get out of the car, lock the doors and then unlock them, enter the car and try the ignition once again. I usually have to do this twice and then the electric steering wheel disengages and I am able to start the car. I am wondering if anyone has had a similar problem and if so how they managed to get it fixed. Any suggestions?
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Old 03-23-2012, 05:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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hello. did you happen to find out what the problem was? i have the same problem.
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Old 03-23-2012, 07:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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hello. did you happen to find out what the problem was? i have the same problem.
I took the car to the BMW dealership. The first thing they did was change the battery and charge me approximately $500.00 in the process. That didn't work. Their explanation was that once the battery begins to loose strength the electrical devices stop working properly with the most important ones being preserved and the less important ones being unable to function. This sounded like a bunch of bogus nonsense but by that time the new battery was already installed. as soon as I realized that nothing had changed. I took it back to them and this time they did some software reprogramming (I think) and that fixed the problem. They charged me another $500.00 in the process.

I have a couple of suggestions. The first is that you might try a new battery for your FOB. If that doesn't work then you may be forced to take the care to the dealership. You might want to say at the outset that you don't want the battery changed.

I hope you get it fixed without undue difficulty or expense. I would be interested to know how you make out.
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Old 03-24-2012, 01:34 AM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks. i actually just jump started my battery. before it died out, my fob was in the immobilizer just to turn on the power because i needed to check some controls, but i didn't start the engine. I read that leaving key in the immobilizer can cause power drainage and/or steering wheel lock. things seem to work fine now. do you suggest anything else, suppose get a new bat or perhaps a software update? i really hope that this would be the only problem and not a start of a string of problems.
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Old 03-24-2012, 07:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks. i actually just jump started my battery. before it died out, my fob was in the immobilizer just to turn on the power because i needed to check some controls, but i didn't start the engine. I read that leaving key in the immobilizer can cause power drainage and/or steering wheel lock. things seem to work fine now. do you suggest anything else, suppose get a new bat or perhaps a software update? i really hope that this would be the only problem and not a start of a string of problems.
I am glad to hear that you the problem has been solved at least for the time being. If the dealership approached the problem correctly, then there seems to be a two step process. The first is to replace the battery and the second is a software update. If the problem recurs it would make sense to try to solve it in this fashion. I wonder if a poor battery could be related to your problem in this case? On a positive note, I have not had any problems since the software update was done. I don't have any other recommendations. I still am perplexed by the problem and what caused it in the first place.

All the best to you. I hope things work out well.
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:38 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Some good advice there guys
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