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-   -   E46 brake lights always on (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=843170)

slowSwede 05-11-2011 02:11 AM

E46 brake lights always on
The car in question has been standing for 2 months, and I recently took out the back lights since I had some dead old insects in there. It's a -01 330.

Anyhow, I get the 3 brake lights on if I press the brake or, when ignition is on. I also get the warning in the dashboard that something is not right with both lamps in the back.

What I've done so far:
Checked ALL the fuses in the the glove compartment (thank you Bmw for using the big fuses on the E46 since the E92 uses the mini :censor: fuses that are made for people no longer than 40 cms...)
Cleaned the areas of contact between bulb and the rear light assembly
Pulled out the gas pedal switch and shorted pins 1,2 and 3,4 (as per one inctruction I found) lights were on constantly nonetheless.
I had a look at the contact that goes into the rear light assembly, and it wasn't melted.

What should I try now???

GuitarmanTT 05-11-2011 02:29 AM

brake switch, I think its a common issue.

slowSwede 05-11-2011 02:38 AM

Yeah, I wrote gas pedal switch when I meant brake pedal switch...

So the lights would stay on even when I bridge connection that goes into the brake pedal switch? I shorted out 1,2 and 3,4 thinking that might get the break lights to stop shining, and then be sure it was this switch...but it could be the BP switch anyhow?

GuitarmanTT 05-11-2011 03:08 AM

Hmmm, Looks like they stay on if the switch is unplugged or the switch is bad. Maybe a safety measure? I'm not 100% I've never dealt with this issue personally.

GuitarmanTT 05-11-2011 03:22 AM

What car is it. There might be a recall for this in the early years.

There is a recall contact your dealer to see if your covered.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 00V048000

slowSwede 05-11-2011 05:07 AM

Thanks for your replies GuitarmanTT!

It's a 2001 330i. I'm in Sweden and Bmw don't seem to mind much about recalls and what not, once your out of warranty. Seeing it's a 2001, warranty is long gone, and on this one I'm on my own.
Actually I've lost faith in Bmw. Recently spent roughly 2000 U$ to fix a problem with my 335. They just swap out parts, let the client pay and doesn't seem to mind at all... Anyhow my problem was due to an electrical glitch in the DME, which I found after a lot of :ben:

I'll probably just head in to Bmw to pick up a new brake pedal switch, even though I don't think that's the problem. But since I'm running out of options, that's the way to go....

If anyone has any further ideas, please share.

GuitarmanTT 05-11-2011 09:57 AM

That sucks bmw wont do the recall over there. The only info i could find explaining it is this recall was for a 2000 5 series but it has the same campaign number.
But it explains the problem and solution with the issue they are having. Other then a pinched wire or stuck relay (if it has a relay) its all i can think of.


Good luck.

the_carp 05-11-2011 10:34 AM

Brake switch

I had exactly the same problem with my 323ci ! i purchase a new brake switch and clutch switch ( As the clutch switch is linked to the brake switch)

Let me know if you need part numbers etcc... :thumbsup:

Really easy DIY


slowSwede 05-11-2011 10:36 AM

Thanks again!

Just got back in from installing the new brake pedal switch...didn't do it for me. Anyhow, these are the fault codes I just fetched:

Current Fault Codes
Anti-theft alarm system: siren radio interior protection, tilt alarm sensor or wire STDWA short circuit to ground or open circuit

Wiper: is blocking or reset contact

Central locking system: short circuit to ground or open circuit at relay for unlocking Rear window

Power window: fuse

Central locking system: crash input always active

Anti-lock brake and dynamic stability control

Current Fault Codes
Wheel speed sensor front right start up detection

Wheel speed sensor rear left start up detection

Wheel speed sensor front left start up detection

Digital motor electronics MS43

Current Fault Codes
MFL Toggle Bit

There is no alarm on this car either, so I'm wondering where that code is coming from.

The steering wheel buttons are not working either....this is probably a pinched wire somewhere....or?

GuitarmanTT 05-11-2011 10:51 AM


I'm stumped! Its like a rat pissed on your fuse panel. hahaha

slowSwede 05-11-2011 11:09 AM

Nothing wrong with the fuses though :thumbsup:

All Bmw's I have throw a couple of codes, the older they get the more they throw...

slowSwede 05-31-2011 10:49 AM

It was a fuse! Number 9 was gone. Replaced it and all is fine once again!

Solidjake 05-31-2011 10:57 AM

Glad you fixed it.

sohum 03-21-2014 12:19 PM

Thank you for this post. I had the exact same problem fixed in the exact same way. What's weird is my car never had a fuse number nine stock, but I stuck one in and problem fixed. I was about to buy a new LCM. You saved my hundreds of dollars. Thanks!!!!

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