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Hi all

Please those who know please help, i have a year 2000 BMW 3 series E46 which has starting problems, basically the car doesnt start or crank , you turn on the key, all dashlights come on, horn, radio ,windows work, but it wont crank to start, i then bought new battery same story. In the beginning, by removing and re inserting key back into ignition 3-5 times car would fire up immediately. now car wont start, even after days of trying, it starts intermittently maybe after trying 40 times, it fires up immediately with no problems,but it can be days before i can start it , bump starting or push starting still it wont start,if its in the mood not to start.

so far i have bought new battery, and now i ordered a new key, still same problem, i then wired the starter to crank without needing the key, the car cranks when i hot wire the starter direct, however it wont start still, so the starter is ok,because anytime i crank it using wires the starter works.

On occassions when the key works, starting the car direct with wiring to the starter fires up the car immediately... SO IN A NUT SHELL, THE CAR CAN START SOMETIMES WITH KEY OR BY DIRECT WIRING TO STARTER, AND SOMETIMES IT WONT START BY KEY OR EVEN CRANK. USING THE DIRECT WIRING TO STARTER THE CAR CAN CRANK ANYTIME I TRY THAT BUT WONT START IF THE KEY STARTING ISNT WORKING.

new key, new battery, starter checked, what else could this be......please help, im on the brink. I am thinking it could be the ignition switch , or is it called the ignition barrel, is there anyone who had a similar problem or knows anything about this

PLEASE HELP!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Its either the ignition switch,not the barrel where you put the key in,there's a switch behind that, you have to drop the steering cowl and there you will see a box with wires thats the switch or the crankshaft sensor is shot, hard to say without diagnostics but I would be heading for the crankshaft sensor.
 

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** IF any of youse having these problems have aftermarket keyless remotes/aftermarket anti-theft systems fitted on your bimmers; that would be my first line of suspect.
 

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Hi grthigpen,

My problem was solved by getting a new key. I've learned that there's two 'code' chips in the key one for the remote door look which can be reprogrammed by us lay people. And the other is used by the alarm system when you try to start the car. Seems that this one failed on my key. I was initially confused as I could open and close all the doors using the remote lock. But then I learned about the second transponder in the key which starts the ignition.

HTH

Matt
 

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I have just experienced exactly the same problem on my 1994 318i convertible. It has 152,000 miles (I bought it with 145,000 in January) and it has been running well until yesterday.
 

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UPDATE: its not the key, it will do it with the backup key. So its the starter or the security system. Can you bypass the demobilizer?
 

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Yet again this problem manifested itself on my car. However, this time when the key was tunred to the ingnition position, I could here one loud click from the engine. Whilst the key was in the ingnition poistion the battery light came on. However, the battery charge level indicator was green. I decided to jump off another car to see if the battery level indicator was faulty. When connecting the jump lead to the positive jump bolt in the engine compartment I noticed that the previous owner had put the nut on upside down (it's a hollow nut so the contact wasn't great) and it was loose! Refitting the nut the right way up and tightning it solved the problem!
 

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Hi all

Please those who know please help, i have a year 2000 BMW 3 series E46 which has starting problems, basically the car doesnt start or crank , you turn on the key, all dashlights come on, horn, radio ,windows work, but it wont crank to start, i then bought new battery same story. In the beginning, by removing and re inserting key back into ignition 3-5 times car would fire up immediately. now car wont start, even after days of trying, it starts intermittently maybe after trying 40 times, it fires up immediately with no problems,but it can be days before i can start it , bump starting or push starting still it wont start,if its in the mood not to start.

so far i have bought new battery, and now i ordered a new key, still same problem, i then wired the starter to crank without needing the key, the car cranks when i hot wire the starter direct, however it wont start still, so the starter is ok,because anytime i crank it using wires the starter works.

On occassions when the key works, starting the car direct with wiring to the starter fires up the car immediately... SO IN A NUT SHELL, THE CAR CAN START SOMETIMES WITH KEY OR BY DIRECT WIRING TO STARTER, AND SOMETIMES IT WONT START BY KEY OR EVEN CRANK. USING THE DIRECT WIRING TO STARTER THE CAR CAN CRANK ANYTIME I TRY THAT BUT WONT START IF THE KEY STARTING ISNT WORKING.

new key, new battery, starter checked, what else could this be......please help, im on the brink. I am thinking it could be the ignition switch , or is it called the ignition barrel, is there anyone who had a similar problem or knows anything about this

PLEASE HELP!!!!!!!!!!
I have the exact same problem with 2001 bmw 330ci, it did the same thing witth a few trys and ended up now not starting at all after being stuck for hours..the stereo is stuck off and thats nornally turned on through the ignition ive replaced the switch and it still dosnt work.. also my key has gone dead now have got the alarm off but wondering if the stock imob is still active.. what sorted ur problem in the end?
 

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Same

My 04 325XI is doing the same thing. I was told that you need to have the codes pulled to find out what the problem is. The system is complex and it could be a number of things. One could throw thousands at it to replace every part. Super frustrating. Any where from a ten dollar part to a $600 starter replacement.
 
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