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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all.

Picked up an E39 today.

Tire Car Wheel Vehicle Vehicle registration plate


A couple of things.

The standard BMW Business radio/cassette died on me on the way home. I'd noticed the volume control was dodgy but the controls on the steering wheel worked fine. Then it just stopped working altogether and won't turn back on. Any ideas?

Also, there's a bit of a whiff of (I think) petrol coming through the air vents. Any thoughts on that? I noticed the previous owner didn't run the climate on full auto. Could it be something as simple as a new cabin filter? Or should I be looking at evap valves etc? No dash warnings though.

Any help would be appreciated. And I'm sure there will be other questions!
 

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If it’s a petrol smell coming through vents check for any leaks on pipework under the bonnet, assuming it is petrol smell that is. Probably also worth having a good check round for any fluid leaks under bonnet that could be giving a smell off.
 

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What model is it? For most of the petrol E39s it is likely the smell in the cabin is toasted oil from the top cover gasket leaking. Not a major issue but very common on a 20yr old car.

Looks quite a nice example otherwise though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sometimes it's a little more simple ;) Noticed that the plastic "trunk" which connects to the right hand pollen filter housing wasn't connected properly. Re-seated it and the smell is gone. Obviously the heating system was just drawing air from under the bonnet hence the smell.

Also, had my man who can read for codes after clearing any old ones. Nothing for the radio so that's probably just died (but wouldn't there be a code?), one from the PDC pinpointing which sensor is stopping the lot working and slightly more seriously

12 Digital Motor Electronics (DME): exhaust camshaft sensor signal

which on my cheap scanner reads as P0369 Camshaft Position Sensor B Circuit Intermittent Bank 1

Further investigation required but any further input would be appreciated.
 

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Having established it is a 530i we can make a bit of progress.

If the error code is accurate then we are talking about part #5 on this diagram.


These things are relatively pricey but you probably want to avoid aftermarket options. They tend not to be too reliable. Before you rush off and replace it check the connectors and wiring back to the DME which you will find in the ebox under the pollen filter housing.

I would also recommend a new crank case breather assembly just because they get old and clogged up and don't work too efficiently. Fixing this will make a world of difference to how the motor runs. May already have been done but if so it should be in the service history.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Having established it is a 530i we can make a bit of progress.
Apologies. Thought I'd said.

Yes, a bit of Googling last night seemed to point to that and changing does seem straightforward.

I'll check the other items you mention. It has a main dealer stamp every year up to 2019 and since then has done very few miles so hopefully all is good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Points towards Transmission Range Sensor. Gearbox went into some safe mode. Cleared the code and the gearbox went back to semi normal. Still not 100% but I'll keep an eye on it. Any opinions?

But I was supposed to be going to a bit of a meet at the Great British Car Journey and didn't want to get into trouble. Idea. Shifted over to manual mode like a true helmsman :LOL: Brilliant!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Battery is good.

Tbh I am coming down on the side of the range sensor. Since picking the car up the changes have occasionally been a little off but I put it down to getting used to the car. It would hold a gear a little too long, that sort of thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So, bit of an update.

New parking sensor fitted and now all working. Radio repaired and upgraded by Baris at Carphonics, ready to be fitted back in. Camshaft position sensor fitted and the code has gone. Transmission range sensor fitted, I'll get a few miles done and see if that's done the trick. New ABS sensor LHR to cure an intermittent light/code.

Also managed to get the car on a lift and everything looks good. I was slightly concerned by a bit of oil around the sump but it's nothing serious. Bit of a squeak from the LHF but arms and bushes all look good so the ARB bushes got a spray. We'll see.

All in all very pleased and hoping that I can now just concentrate on the cosmetic.

If anyone's interested I'll keep you posted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The engine was getting a little loud around the right hand side. Halfway between a knock and a blow. It wasn't there when I picked the car up but was getting progressively more loud. Cat blowing? Manifold gaskets? No. Loose (and old) spark plugs. 4, 5 and 6 I could remove with just the plug socket and no ratchet :oops: New NGKs in, torqued up and it purrs.
 
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