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      12-22-2012, 10:09 PM   #1
SimpleMan
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Car wouldn't start... any ideas?

Got in my car, turned the key to start it, all the lights come on but the engine doesn't turn over. I think I turned the key counter clockwise and then clockwise to try and start it again and I lost all power. I may have lost all power right after attempting to start it the first time. I really can't remember. So I'm sitting in my car and it's completely dead... absolutely nothing works, i.e., door locks, dash lights, etc.. So I sat there for two or three minutes thinking oh shit. I then here something click. I think it came from the dash area. So I put the key back in the ignition, turn it to the first position and all the lights come on but my trip odometer is reset to zero and my clocks are both showing --:--. I turn the key and it starts right up. No error codes or anything. Does anyone know what happened? The only other time I was left dead in the water was while I was driving my old 07 328i (fuel pump issue) and it's not a pleasant feeling.
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      12-22-2012, 10:56 PM   #2
MHeavNC
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Happened to me, sort of.... Before I got my M Coupe, we rarely drove the Z4 convertible. One day I got in the convertible and noticed the trip miles and clock were just as you described. The car did start up though.. I guess it somehow lost battery power while it was sitting for a couple weeks.. ??Have no idea what happened, and it hasn't happened since.. That was over 2 years ago.. The car is now my wife's daily driver. Anyone else have any ideas?
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      12-22-2012, 11:31 PM   #3
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Battery is the most likely suspect. Get it tested. Alternator would be second. Other electronics after that.

Check battery connections for corrosion and for tightness. Then get it checked (Autozone, etc.). Next check alternator voltage (search--there's a few posts-threads on "how to").
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      12-23-2012, 06:59 AM   #4
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I'm with Finnegan regarding your battery terminals/connections. If the starter's high amperage requirements knock everything off when the key was turned to start, it usually points to either loose connections or corrosion (and it can be unseen corrosion).
Remove your battery connections - the negative first then positive. Clean both the connections and the battery terminals with a wire brush. Reconnect the positive terminal first followed by the negative and you should be good to go (if not it's new battery time).
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      12-23-2012, 09:53 AM   #5
SimpleMan
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Thanks guys! I'll take a look at it today. I've only had the car about a month. It's only got 18,000 miles on it and I have no idea if it's still running the original battery.
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      12-23-2012, 10:30 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Finnegan View Post
Battery is the most likely suspect. Get it tested. Alternator would be second. Other electronics after that.

Check battery connections for corrosion and for tightness. Then get it checked (Autozone, etc.). Next check alternator voltage (search--there's a few posts-threads on "how to").
Yep. Start with battery connections.

Whenever I have a low or dead battey I always have the alternator tested for a bad diode, voltage and amperage. An alternator can still work and put out correct voltage and amperage but if it has a bad diode it will drain a battey, often overnight.
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      12-24-2012, 01:27 AM   #7
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Positive was a 1/4 way off the post and loose. The negative was also slightly loose. It looks like a new BMW battery but then my entire car looks new so that doesn't tell me anything. I couldn't find a date on the battery. The light that's suppose to indicate whether it's charged or needs to be replaced was black (insufficiently charged). I'll drive it around for a few days and see if it changes to green.

You guys are awesome! Thanks for the help... much appreciated.
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      12-24-2012, 07:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SimpleMan View Post
Positive was a 1/4 way off the post and loose. The negative was also slightly loose. It looks like a new BMW battery but then my entire car looks new so that doesn't tell me anything. I couldn't find a date on the battery. The light that's suppose to indicate whether it's charged or needs to be replaced was black (insufficiently charged). I'll drive it around for a few days and see if it changes to green.

You guys are awesome! Thanks for the help... much appreciated.
There's a good chance that you have the original battery and if you do, it's getting pretty close to being at the end of its life. You could take it and have it checked to find out how strong it is.
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      12-24-2012, 07:38 PM   #9
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I had the same issue's with mine, got the car with 34k miles original battery, changed it opted for the interstate battery, no problems anymore, but I do trickle charge the car often because its my weekend car..
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      01-06-2013, 10:35 PM   #10
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Another starting problem... My 2003 Z4 3.0 SMG will not start. On the cold morning last week I got half a wimpy crank when trying to start it and then nothing, so it made sense it was the battery. Replaced the battery this weekend and now I get nothing but a click when turning key to start. The EML and SAS lights are lit, but I don't recall if they are normally on or not before the engine starts. The click makes me think the starter might the problem. Any other ideas?

Thanks!
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      01-06-2013, 11:06 PM   #11
Finnegan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B View Post
Another starting problem... My 2003 Z4 3.0 SMG will not start. On the cold morning last week I got half a wimpy crank when trying to start it and then nothing, so it made sense it was the battery. Replaced the battery this weekend and now I get nothing but a click when turning key to start. The EML and SAS lights are lit, but I don't recall if they are normally on or not before the engine starts. The click makes me think the starter might the problem. Any other ideas?

Thanks!

Sounds like a starter. Here's a DIY on replacement. Not that bad, and not that expensive.
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      03-19-2013, 07:14 AM   #12
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I am having the same problem. Last week I took my car to BMW and they did a diagnostic on it and it cost me $2800 to have them repair everything they said needed repaired. Then yesterday, it wouldn't start. I got a friend to give me a jump and it started. Checked it before I went to bed, dead in the water. Hubby hooked it up to a charger over night, and it started up this morning, but I'm pretty sure when I go out to leave work, I'm going to need another jump. Any ideas? The lights, radio ect work fine, but it just clicks when I try to start. A jump will get it started everytime.
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      03-19-2013, 07:15 AM   #13
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Also, does anyone know a BMW mechanic in South Florida?
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      03-19-2013, 07:47 AM   #14
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Also, does anyone know a BMW mechanic in South Florida?
I always go to redline BMW in pompano beach, but may be a bit far for you.
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