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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 06-03-2009, 10:29 AM   #1
01blu325i
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Turn Signal blinking fast than slowing to normal

I have a 2001 325i . Recently I've noticed that when I turn the driver side turn signal on it will blink very fast for about 2 seconds then return to indicating normally. I took out all 3 bulbs on that side to check for a blown turn signal but all 3 seem to be fine. I dont think the bulbs are blown because after it flickers fast for a few seconds it returns to blinking normally. Can anyone share some insight on this problem?
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Old 06-03-2009, 10:34 AM   #2
bigpaulie69
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the socket for the front corner blulb might be coroded...i had the same problem when i first bought my car...i let it stay like that for a while and i got worse started happening more often and for longer periods of time. You can buy a bulb socket from the dealer for about $10-$15.
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Old 06-03-2009, 10:53 AM   #3
01blu325i
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Ah I c Thanks alot man! And what you sayin is right At first it was doing it every once in a while when I turned it on but now its doing it everytime and for longer and longer . Again thanks alot. SO only the front you think? Does it happen to the rear/side marker?
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Old 06-03-2009, 11:02 AM   #4
nite-stalker
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check ALL the bulb sockets and connectors
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Old 06-03-2009, 11:27 AM   #5
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Agreed - inspect the front socket for corrosion, and check the contacts on the bulb for evidence of melting. Check both front sockets while you're at it; if one is bad, the other is probably not far behind. Clean/R&R/Replace as necessary.

In facelift sedans (2002-2005), the taillight wiring harness has a common/known problem with insufficient grounding. It's less of a problem with the coupes and pre-facelift sedans, but still possible.
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Old 06-03-2009, 12:50 PM   #6
01blu325i
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Thanks all for your help. Much appreciated. Is there anywhere that anyone knows of where I could possibly get the part offline? Or just go to bmw?
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Old 06-03-2009, 01:00 PM   #7
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Change a bulb. If you will take bulb out and look on bulb socket you will find a worn socket from one side of the bulb socket.
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Old 06-03-2009, 01:38 PM   #8
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Old 10-24-2011, 09:16 AM   #9
jasonbimmer
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ok, I dont normally wake threads from the dead but I guess I should chip in my discovery.
on my prefacelift E46, over the time the pins in the tail light plug would become loose, especially the brown ground wire.
what I did was lifting the white clip on the plug, use a screw driver push the ground pin lock clip down removing it from the plug.
when its out, use a pair of needle nose pliers to push down the four metal clips down into the pin so they would reduce the gap between the contact surfaces.
also a little tune-up grease would also help better contact.
after doing this, my signal turned normal. a good way to tell if you have a bad connection is to turn on the parking light, open the tail light panel and wiggle the socket see if the lights suddenly go bright.
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Old 09-09-2012, 01:46 PM   #10
BLierso
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 01blu325i View Post
I have a 2001 325i . Recently I've noticed that when I turn the driver side turn signal on it will blink very fast for about 2 seconds then return to indicating normally. I took out all 3 bulbs on that side to check for a blown turn signal but all 3 seem to be fine. I dont think the bulbs are blown because after it flickers fast for a few seconds it returns to blinking normally. Can anyone share some insight on this problem?
2001 325i - Mine started out like that and the cause was the ground wire (brown) connection to the back lights, inside the socket plug the contacts were toasted. (burned up) I had to solder a jumper wire to the ground contact plate directly. Now everything works fine. Apparently the size of the ground contact terminal inside the plug is insufficient (too small) and if the 3 lights are on a lot the ground contacts heat up and start to burn up slowly. It happened to both sides of the back lights. I hope this helps.
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Old 09-09-2012, 07:05 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by BLierso View Post
2001 325i - Mine started out like that and the cause was the ground wire (brown) connection to the back lights, inside the socket plug the contacts were toasted. (burned up) I had to solder a jumper wire to the ground contact plate directly. Now everything works fine. Apparently the size of the ground contact terminal inside the plug is insufficient (too small) and if the 3 lights are on a lot the ground contacts heat up and start to burn up slowly. It happened to both sides of the back lights. I hope this helps.
This post was dead for almost a year, and for almost 2.5 years before that. You also posted the same answer that had already been posted.

Ahhh. Your first post.

Nice. Late, but nice. Live long and prosper my friend, and read the dates of the posts you reply to.
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Old 09-09-2012, 09:14 PM   #12
BLierso
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Sorry, it was intended for new & future users with this problem and a solution, not as an answer to the original poster.
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Old 09-09-2012, 09:25 PM   #13
BeMyWhip
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In the past this happened on my awesome 330Ci...
Yes it happened to my car.
Two things,
The rear taillights brown ground wire was at fault,
And the other culprit was the front.corner light bulb's prong was chip off.
So, fix the rear ground wire (check my page for diy),
Or replace front bulbs.
Hth
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Old 11-12-2012, 04:27 PM   #14
2KBMW
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my right tail light has this problem. The fault light shows but when I check the bulbs, all looks normal...even the blinking fast happens too...what's happening?
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Old 11-12-2012, 04:39 PM   #15
jdstrickland
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Originally Posted by 2KBMW View Post
my right tail light has this problem. The fault light shows but when I check the bulbs, all looks normal...even the blinking fast happens too...what's happening?
Did you read the posts?

On the side that blinks fast, remove the tail lamp housing and inspect the inside of the connector -- both on the housing side and on the vehicle wiring side -- and you should notice that one of the pins is badly burnt. If you pull the wrapping back on the wiring harness, you will see that the pin that is affected is the BRN wire. BRN is the ground for the entire housing, and it turns out the current on the wire can exceed the ability of the wire to carry current.
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Old 06-15-2013, 01:25 AM   #16
Joe O
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I have a 2001 330Ci just had the same issue where my left blinker would blink fast 2 or 3 times then go back to normal speed. Found that it was the driver's side rear blinker bulb that was the cause. I changed the bulb, cleaned it, etc - that didn't work. I unhooked the connector cable holding the bulb assembly and found corrosion on the terminals of the bulb assembly. I cleaned these off with an emery board (fingernail file), hooked it back up - this fixed the problem.
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