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E36 General discussion and technical help for (E36) 1992-1999 3 series cars. 318, 323, 325, 328.

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Unread 03-02-2009, 09:48 AM   #1

Name: Grahamp
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Your Ride: 1998 E36 328i Auto
Question E36 328i Auto 1998 - Starter does not turn over when hot.

I own a 328i Auto, which has been a reliable car for the past 7 years, since 2001. I have bought it at about 60 000 kms and have now done about 180 000 kms. so it has given us great motoring!

Recently, it has become less and less reliable to start after parking in the sun or a long run on a hot day. Temperatures here in South Africa get up to 36 degrees C at times in summer. The cure for this is to open all windows and turn on the blower for about 5 minutes and then to try to start again. Most times it works and starts instantly, however it is temperamental especially after shopping at the mall on a hot day.

Using the generic E36 Haynes manual, I think it could be the starter interlock relay, however the relays under the hood and inside the car (left and right), just don't correspond to the diagrams.

1. Where is the starter relay ? I will start by replacing it.

2. Failing that, I might replace the ignition switch, on the assumption that it could be worn after this mileage.

Has anyone experienced this particular fault on the 328i Auto or Auto E 36 models before ? Can you throw some light on the problem ?
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Unread 07-01-2009, 05:46 AM   #2

Name: tauki
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Your Ride: 1997 bmw 323 (m52)
after market anti theft dervise

hello.I' ve read about u problem.do u stil have the same problem.If not what did u do,becouse it seems as if I have the same problem.do u have these after market anti theft dervise
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Unread 07-01-2009, 05:25 PM   #3
Big Evil
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Normally the relay you're looking for is located in the fuse box under the hood of the car. That would be the battery junction box, in the car under the dash is the central junction box, and I'm not sure how yours is equipped but there is sometimes a body control fuse box under the back seat (although I think that's more of a 5 series thing). You may want to try cleaning the cables and connections to the starter (replacing the relay is cheap and easy so why not?) and get your battery/battery cables checked, make sure they're clean and tight. If all that fails it may be time for a starter or ignition switch. How heavy is your key chain?
Big Evil, The BMW driving monster of the American Southwest (Currently on BMW #5)
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