E46Fanatics - View Single Post - 325xi wont start
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Old 10-21-2012, 12:59 AM   #8
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: florida
Posts: 158
My Ride: bmw 325 ci
Originally Posted by tomoyer View Post
First and easiest check, try all your keys and see if any of them work/don't work. If that is the case, you have a bad key. Next check, test the battery with a DMM, should have 12.5 or more volts if fully charged. You can remove the battery and have it load tested to make sure that it has the cold cranking amperage and indeed doesn't have a shorted cell(s). These are the 2 easiest and quickest things to rule out. Also, make sure that your battery cables at the battery are clean and tight, also the positive at the jumper point under the hood and that all wires are clean and tight at the starter and starter solenoid. BUT from what you said, I would say that you have a starter solenoid starting to really go bad, not completely shot, but just about there. The solenoid triggers the starter motor to engage and turn the motor to start it. No clicking from the solenoid and the lights staying on when trying to crank is usually a sign of a solenoid that is not "switching", if the lights go dim or out when cranking, its a sign that the starter motor or solenoid is shorted out.
I have the identical problem all the electrical devices and lights work fine but when you turn the key not even a click.
I replaced the battery since I was sure this was the culprit sice the cranking sounded a little slower before this happened. But no luck same silence. I tried the other key and no dice. I would love to chech the solenoid or starter but can't see or even find in the motor since its all covered in plastic and no part can be seen. I have been told the access is from below and you need to have it on a lift. I wanted to tap the starter to see if i could at least start to take to a mechanic.

I feel the problem is either the starter, solenoid or start switch and maybe the ignition anti theft if it has one. I have a 2004 325ci.
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