I have a 97 528i. The starter is new and I have replaced the ignition switch.

rtbnsnrtbnsn Member Posts: 4
edited December 2014 in BMW
The problem is that the starter will not engage. It doesn't do it all the time and sometimes after coming back to it 5 minutes later it will start. I have check the fuses and my mechanic said it was something to do with the security system. I try unlocking doors/locking doors and nothing will work until the car wants to engage. Any ideas???


  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,482
    Do you have a spare key you can try?

  • rtbnsnrtbnsn Member Posts: 4
    No, only one key came with the car.
  • rtbnsnrtbnsn Member Posts: 4
    Thanks for the overwhelming response of HELP!!!!!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,482
    edited December 2014
    Well sorry but there's not a lot of information here. Perhaps you can clarify a few things.

    when you say it doesn't start, do the dash lights/symbols show up, or is the dash blank?

    Have you tried moving the gearshift to neutral and trying to start?

    Not sure why you mechanic "thinks" it's the security system? Has he not scanned the car for trouble codes yet?

    Does you dash show a security light?
  • rtbnsnrtbnsn Member Posts: 4
    All of the normal dash lights light up. Definitely getting power. No security lights. I tried starting in neutral, not the neutral control switch. Really at my wits end! Sometimes it starts, other times it doesn't.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,482
    edited December 2014
    If you can do this on your own--can you get a test light on the lead going from the ignition switch to the starter solenoid? Starter is on left (driver's) side of engine as you probably know by now.

    It's the little spad fitting on the bottom left of the photo (not the drawing).

    As you, or someone, turns the key, the test light should go on--that actives the starter solenoid.

    So if the test light goes on when the key is turned to the "crank" position, then the trouble should be in the solenoid or starter motor. As far as I know, the only thing that interrupts this circuit would be the immobilizer or the neutral safety switch---but I don't have the wiring diagram for the whole car so there might be some other little devil in there.

    If the light only goes on now and then when you turn the key to crank (intermittent) then we'd suspect the ignition switch or some glitch in the wiring between the switch and the solenoid.

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