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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 02-06-2009, 06:50 AM   #1
mujjuman
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E46 Brake Light Switch.....

Ever since I bought my car, I've wondered why in the world did everyone behind me brake so late and almost rear end me, every time!

Well last night when all the traffic died down, I had to take the car out and I noticed that when I press the brakes, the lights wont come on! I have to press the brake pedal MUCH lower for the light to come on, but of course I dont brake that hard on EVERY stop.

Is there a way to adjust this?

--------

Also, non-related and much less important... when I press the DSC button, I get the triangle with the circular arrow around it... ok, normal. But when I press and hold it, nothing else happens, just the yellow triangle with the circle. Isnt the "BRAKE" supposed to come on in yellow? I did a cluster test (looks cool btw) to see if I even have a yellow "BRAKE" light and yes, the bulb works.
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Old 02-06-2009, 06:52 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mujjuman View Post
Ever since I bought my car, I've wondered why in the world did everyone behind me brake so late and almost rear end me, every time!

Well last night when all the traffic died down, I had to take the car out and I noticed that when I press the brakes, the lights wont come on! I have to press the brake pedal MUCH lower for the light to come on, but of course I dont brake that hard on EVERY stop.

Is there a way to adjust this?

--------

Also, non-related and much less important... when I press the DSC button, I get the triangle with the circular arrow around it... ok, normal. But when I press and hold it, nothing else happens, just the yellow triangle with the circle. Isnt the "BRAKE" supposed to come on in yellow? I did a cluster test (looks cool btw) to see if I even have a yellow "BRAKE" light and yes, the bulb works.
wow man that sounds dangerous!
Hope you get it resolved
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Old 02-06-2009, 06:55 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by BMWfanfromQuebec View Post
wow man that sounds dangerous!
Hope you get it resolved
No need to quote the op when you're the first to reply.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:10 AM   #4
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wow man that sounds dangerous!
Hope you get it resolved
I hope so too! That is a ticketable offense here... not to mention very unsafe and dangerous, if other drivers cannot readily see that I am slowing down or stopping.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:16 AM   #5
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I hope so too! That is a ticketable offense here... not to mention very unsafe and dangerous, if other drivers cannot readily see that I am slowing down or stopping.
Think of it like a racecar,
no brake lights, if they smash in the rear of your car, there race is finished

lol just jokin with ya
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Old 02-06-2009, 09:18 AM   #6
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haha. I'm hoping if I go to the dealer that it will be a cheap + easy fix. I'm sure it is.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:32 PM   #7
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OK, just an update...

Went to BMW dealer to buy a brake light switch for $37 incl. tax. They couldnt check my car out today, but I couldnt wait more than a freakin week to have brake lights... just on the way to the dealer and the independent shop there were really close encounters of getting rear ended! Eventually I just drove real slow with my flashers on to indicate "OK be careful, something unexpected might happen" when I had to make turns (apparently, signaling a turn isnt good enough). So I went to an independent shop that works on all German cars, and they had a bunch of Porsches and I noticed a CLASSIC Mercedes. "Wow" I thought.

At first they couldnt figure out how to fix it, but when I showed them the new part they figured it out. They had to adjust the brake light switch, and now my brake lights turn on as soon as I touch the pedal, like it should. They charged me $50 but with the new switch that I bought that is non-refundable the whole thing was close to $90... I'm pretty pissed about that, but I'm glad that I wont have to worry about that anymore.

Then I noticed my fuel pump making odd noises. God damn.
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:23 AM   #8
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OK, just an update...

Went to BMW dealer to buy a brake light switch for $37 incl. tax. They couldnt check my car out today, but I couldnt wait more than a freakin week to have brake lights... just on the way to the dealer and the independent shop there were really close encounters of getting rear ended! Eventually I just drove real slow with my flashers on to indicate "OK be careful, something unexpected might happen" when I had to make turns (apparently, signaling a turn isnt good enough). So I went to an independent shop that works on all German cars, and they had a bunch of Porsches and I noticed a CLASSIC Mercedes. "Wow" I thought.

At first they couldnt figure out how to fix it, but when I showed them the new part they figured it out. They had to adjust the brake light switch, and now my brake lights turn on as soon as I touch the pedal, like it should. They charged me $50 but with the new switch that I bought that is non-refundable the whole thing was close to $90... I'm pretty pissed about that, but I'm glad that I wont have to worry about that anymore.

Then I noticed my fuel pump making odd noises. God damn.
Can you please tell me where the brake light switch is. Mine fails every once in a while and I need to replace it. I just dont know if it is in the pedal assembly or somewhere above it. Thanks! Do you have the part number for the new brake switch?
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:37 AM   #9
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Sorry I dont have the part number for it.... I just went to the dealer and he gave me a switch for $37... it didnt even come with packaging lol.

The brake light switch is somewhere under the dash it seems.... you have to unscrew something (atleast in my car, and my car is pretty messed up from the first owner). I'll try taking pics of it, by tonight.
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:51 AM   #10
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Pnumber 11 or 12 depending....
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Old 02-11-2009, 10:51 AM   #11
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Pnumber 11 or 12 depending....

Thanks I will just have to look under there to see exactly because I found that same pic on realoem but couldnt really tell how the switch is attached and exactly where it is. Maybe I will just remove the switch and take it to the dealership so they can pull the part number right from there.
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:29 PM   #12
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ok so i got some pics and how to get there:

under the dash:


unscrew these screws:


pull down from underneath the steering column:


looks like this when you pull:


the brake light switch is the switch above the brake pedal:


here is a bigger pic (might be too big... sorry i have really high resolution):


I hope I helped. Also, my car may look different because the guy who owned the car before me did a bad job maintaining and did some things wrong while working on it.
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Old 02-11-2009, 07:04 PM   #13
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Not sure if it is the same brake light switch as on an e36. I have one for my now departed e36. I crashed the car before I could install it. So, if anyone needs one, PM me.
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:48 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by mujjuman View Post
ok so i got some pics and how to get there:

under the dash:


unscrew these screws:


pull down from underneath the steering column:


looks like this when you pull:


the brake light switch is the switch above the brake pedal:


here is a bigger pic (might be too big... sorry i have really high resolution):


I hope I helped. Also, my car may look different because the guy who owned the car before me did a bad job maintaining and did some things wrong while working on it.

AWESOME, thank you so much!!! Now I just have to get to the dealership to order the part. Again thanks for the pictures and your time, its greatly appreciated!
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Old 02-12-2009, 05:11 PM   #15
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No problem man, I like to help out as much as I can.
I have an extra brand new brake light switch that I never used lying around..
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Old 02-13-2009, 02:02 PM   #16
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No problem man, I like to help out as much as I can.
I have an extra brand new brake light switch that I never used lying around..
DAMN, wish I would have known, I just bought the switch after work yesterday!
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Old 02-13-2009, 04:14 PM   #17
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OK, just an update...
So I went to an independent shop that works on all German cars, and they had a bunch of Porsches and I noticed a CLASSIC Mercedes. "Wow" I thought.
I used to go to a "all german" (actually german and italian) repair shop, but that turned out to be a mistake. Now I'm taking my car to a BMW specialist.
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Old 02-13-2009, 05:28 PM   #18
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Thanks for the tip. Unfortunately, I couldnt find any BMW Specialists.... other than the dealer.
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Old 03-24-2009, 08:53 AM   #19
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mujjuman, I just wanted to follow up with you and let you know that replacing the brake light switch worked and I havent had the stutters or delays any longer. It was an easy fix and appreciate all your time and help, thanks for being an assett to these forums!
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Old 03-25-2009, 12:19 AM   #20
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lol, I'm very flattered! Thanks for the follow up and I'm very happy that I was a help.
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