1996 320i touring lights staying on! AAARRGH!

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  1. 1996 320i touring lights staying on! AAARRGH!
    #1
    Bimmer Fan
    Car Details
    scottouring's Car Details
    Model of Car:
    320i Touring
    Year of Manufacture:
    1995
    Transmission Type:
    manual
    Car Body Type:
    Touring

    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Stavanger, Norway
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    Hi people can someone help me with this one please!

    About 2 months ago I noticed when turning my lights of and removing the ignition key the lights on warning buzzer sounded despite the fact that I had turned the lights off. I noticed that the dash and control panel backlighting was staying on faintly (at the same brightness that you see when driving with lights off). Also number plate light stayed on.

    Then the problem went away and so did my worries about it.

    Then it came back but only when I locked the car on central looking (remote with BMW alarm arming) BUT not when I locked it using the key in the door.

    In doing some half arsed diagnostic work I disconnected the tailgate locking motor (thinking it was the number plate light connection) and the problem disappeared for two months. With the tailgate lock disconnected I was even able to lock it on remote central locking with no probs.

    I believed that the problem was alarm related and didn't think much about it untill.....

    Its now happening again even without locking it. To summarise: Stop engine, lights switch to off position, remove key and dash backlighting and number plate light stays on accompanied by 'lights on warning reminder buzzer thing'.

    Seems to me theres and issue with the normal interior 'daytime driving dash lights' staying on and not isolating themselves from a power feed.

    Anyone had this issue, or perhaps know where I should start looking??

    I hate electrical problems!!

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  3. #2
    BMW Guru
    Car Details
    billywhizz1984's Car Details
    Model of Car:
    E36 323i x 3, 325TDS x 1, 320i x 2, 318is x 1
    Year of Manufacture:
    1999 x 2, 1998, 1997 x 2, 1996, 1995
    Transmission Type:
    Manual, Auto, Auto, Manual, Auto, Auto, Manual
    Car Body Type:
    Touring x 4, Convertible x 2, Coupe x 1
    billywhizz1984's Avatar
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    You are right. Somewhere there is a live feeding back into the lighting circuit, this keeps the buzzer going too.

    A quick way to narrow the search down is to remove one fuse at a time. Whichever fuse stops the lights & buzzer has the dodgy circuit. Make sure you do all the fuses, even if you find one that stops the problem, just in case it is linked to another circuit.

    Then look up the what the fuse does in the handbook and examine the wiring for each circuit. My money is on your CD/Tuner!

  4. #3
    Dr of BMW gildersol's Avatar
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    Worth checking the wiring where it passes from the car into the tailgate beside the hinge as the wires are prone to breaking/chafing with all the opening and closing leading to various electrical anomolies.

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  6. #4
    Bimmer Fan
    Car Details
    scottouring's Car Details
    Model of Car:
    320i Touring
    Year of Manufacture:
    1995
    Transmission Type:
    manual
    Car Body Type:
    Touring

    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Stavanger, Norway
    Posts
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    Thanks for the pointers, guys. I will look into it this weekend. As usual though, the problem has gone away now. I will say it again...I hate electrical problems!

  7. #5
    BMW Crazed
    Car Details
    Flakmonkey's Car Details
    Model of Car:
    328i
    Year of Manufacture:
    1998
    Transmission Type:
    manual
    Car Body Type:
    Touring
    Flakmonkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Hinckley, Leics
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    Quote Originally Posted by gildersol View Post
    Worth checking the wiring where it passes from the car into the tailgate beside the hinge as the wires are prone to breaking/chafing with all the opening and closing leading to various electrical anomolies.
    ... and whilst you're there take a look behind the n/s tail light cover and see if your washer fluid has been leaking over the connectors that live there. You might need to remove the n/s drop-down flap and CD changer bracket behind it for a proper look.

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to Flakmonkey For This Useful Post:

    gildersol(13-02-2010)

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