E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > E46 BMW > General E46 Forum

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!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rating: Thread Rating: 1 votes, 5.00 average. Display Modes
Old 08-05-2013, 09:28 AM   #1
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
So I got my first flat tire...

Hey.

So I bought a used 2000 bmw 328i a few monthes ago and everything is great despite it having 155k miles on it.

Question 1:

The other day I was driving and I hit a pothole and got a flat tire on my front left driver tire. Lucky for me there was a full tire in the trunk, not just a donut. So I went ahead and changed the tire, everything is working well but there seems to be a little drag/vibration. Does this mean I need to get the tires aligned or do I just need to check the air pressure in the new tire?

Question 2:
When I hit the pothole my passenger side head airbag went off (from searching on here I see that its not a super uncommon issue, which sucks but whatever). I just stuffed it back in after deflating it because I can't afford to fix it being a poor college student. Can I just cut out the passenger airbag until I have money to get it fixed? Its one of these: http://www.bmwusedspares.co.uk/ekmps...65-68529-p.jpg

Thanks for any and all advice._a_
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 08-05-2013, 09:35 AM   #2
Mango
A full five stars, son
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,920
My Ride: M54B30
Wow. If you hit a pot hole hard enough to set off your airbag, you might want to check your strut tower to make sure it hasn't popped too. Take it to the BMW dealer and complain. You might be able to get them to replace it.

You can drive without an airbag though its not ideal. Not 100% sure if the remaining airbags will deploy in the event of a collision. Is your airbag light on?
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 09:45 AM   #3
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
Correct me if I am wrong but the strut tower is on the lower part of the vehicle so it would be effected if the side and main(front?) air bags deployed right? Only my head airbag deployed. Regardless I will check it out, thanks.

I bought the car used so I don't think the dealership will help me out at all. Right?

My airbag light is on.
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 09:48 AM   #4
Mango
A full five stars, son
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,920
My Ride: M54B30
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMagicalHindu View Post
Correct me if I am wrong but the strut tower is on the lower part of the vehicle so it would be effected if the side and main(front?) air bags deployed right? Only my head airbag deployed. Regardless I will check it out, thanks.

I bought the car used so I don't think the dealership will help me out at all. Right?

My airbag light is on.
It's a shot in the dark but BMW may honor a claim for the airbag since they aren't supposed to go off with a pothole strike. If anything happened to one of your passenger due to not having a side airbag BMW could be on the hook. This isn't really a dealer thing but a BMW USA thing. Tell them Hanz Jemango sent you and authorized a side airbag replacement.

The strut tower is where the top of the strut mounts to. Open your hood. It has three nuts at the top. Make sure the metal is not mushroomed (bent) or cracked.
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 09:55 AM   #5
jfoj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Fairfax, VA USA
Posts: 10,939
My Ride: '06 330CiC, '03 M5
Your car is 13 years old now, so not sure if BMW will do anything for you, but it is worth a call and try to push is. Post a picture of your wheel as it may give an idea of what amount of impact you took.

Likely the suspension/strut bottomed and put a strong shockwave through the car? The airbag sensors react on deceleration as I recall and i think?? there may be a sensor along the side sill plate between the seat and the door jam for the side curtain???

Search my signature, I pushed early on for folks to both contact BMW and NHTSA and file a complaint. NHTSA will not do anything for you, but they need to the complaints to reach a certain number before they will start an investigation.

https://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/Vehicl...nt/index.xhtml

Hitting potholes should not typically deploy airbags in my opinion.

Search my user name and airbags, you will see you are not the only honorary member of the BMW Airbag Club!

Might as well cut the airbag off as it is not reusable and there is no evidence that would be useful from the airbag, it is not the problem, it is a reaction to the problem.

You could likely recode the side curtains off with software and then likely clear the airbag light, but usually if you code an airbag off, they also need to be physically disconnected. There are some possible legal ramifications in doing something like this, so not advisable in the long run.

Not 100% sure if you need to send the airbag module out for resetting. If you do, costs about $50-$60, but hold off in case you can get BMW to cover the repair.

Contact BMW North America first, be careful as they have a lot of lovely 20 somethings working there that will initially tell you they do not cover airbags. These young kids have not technical training, no real automotive knowledge, no common sense and are just trained to politely say "no" to almost everything. They will tell you they have never heard of this problem, they have never paid for this type of repair and so forth. Partially because they are too young to get their head out of their backsides. So you may have to escalate within BMW on NA, I even start asking people how long they have worked for BMW of NA and how old they are as it becomes pretty clear when dealing with someone that is 23-24 years old and has only worked for BMW of NA less than a year, they have no clue.

If you get nowhere with BMW of NA, contact the Service Manager/Director of BMW of Rockville or Tischer. They are some of the better dealers in the area.

Let us know what you find out.
__________________
Solve your misfires, lean codes, rough idle - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=897616

Fuel pump failures - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=929501

Temp Info - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=964491

Hidden OBC Menu - Check Voltage, Temps, Fuel Level - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=239619

E46/E39 GM5 Door Lock Info - www.bmwgm5.com

Lower hose fan switch O-ring - BMW #13621743299

Last edited by jfoj; 08-05-2013 at 09:56 AM.
jfoj is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 10:13 AM   #6
Mango
A full five stars, son
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,920
My Ride: M54B30
^Yep unless the OP's car is mangled, he may have a good case that the sensors or programmed thresholds not working as designed.
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 10:18 AM   #7
Hamsocne
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia
Posts: 240
My Ride: 2002 330Ci
When I first joined a member mentioned hitting a pothole on a bridge near NY/NJ and the passenger airbag was an issue. Also, I never got a letter about the airbag recall and I am within the time frame. Anyone heard anything about that? No thread hijack intended.
__________________
Hamsocne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 10:40 AM   #8
jfoj
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Fairfax, VA USA
Posts: 10,939
My Ride: '06 330CiC, '03 M5
There were a few airbag related recalls for the E46 as I recall. Do not take my word on this as I am going from a very limited memory of what they were for.

Check the NHTSA website for more info.

The first E46 airbag recall was for 2002-2003????? models because the main airbag module was too sensitive????

Then there was a very recent E46 airbag recall for a small number of airbags due to a propellant problem?????

Dealers can search via VIN for sure. You may have a car that was not within the VIN range, the car may have had the recall repair performed or you have not been tracked down via vehicle registration info.

As for the pothole issue, most of these have been side curtains as I recall???? Many of these did not even flatten the tire or damage the rim as I recall?? Most had zero body damage. So this clearly should raise a flag.

My guess is the body/floor pan is extremely stiff and the shock from the pothole is sent directly to the side curtain sensor module and causes the sensor to trigger and deploy the side curtain. It was my understanding that most airbag systems require 2 sensors to be triggered before an airbag deploys, but I did not design the system so I cannot comment for sure on this. There have also been situations where some of the airbag sensors (not necessarily BMW) had questionable solder joints, however, the solder joint problems usually caused airbag faults.

If just seems that if you end up with little to no body damage that I would question airbag deployments. Yes some potholes can be a rather severe hit, but again, if the suspension or wheel does not take one for the team, just the tire, I would be asking a lot of questions.
__________________
Solve your misfires, lean codes, rough idle - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=897616

Fuel pump failures - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=929501

Temp Info - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=964491

Hidden OBC Menu - Check Voltage, Temps, Fuel Level - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=239619

E46/E39 GM5 Door Lock Info - www.bmwgm5.com

Lower hose fan switch O-ring - BMW #13621743299
jfoj is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 11:03 AM   #9
Mango
A full five stars, son
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,920
My Ride: M54B30
Quote:
Originally Posted by jfoj View Post
There were a few airbag related recalls for the E46 as I recall. Do not take my word on this as I am going from a very limited memory of what they were for.

Check the NHTSA website for more info.

The first E46 airbag recall was for 2002-2003????? models because the main airbag module was too sensitive????

Then there was a very recent E46 airbag recall for a small number of airbags due to a propellant problem?????

Dealers can search via VIN for sure. You may have a car that was not within the VIN range, the car may have had the recall repair performed or you have not been tracked down via vehicle registration info.

As for the pothole issue, most of these have been side curtains as I recall???? Many of these did not even flatten the tire or damage the rim as I recall?? Most had zero body damage. So this clearly should raise a flag.

My guess is the body/floor pan is extremely stiff and the shock from the pothole is sent directly to the side curtain sensor module and causes the sensor to trigger and deploy the side curtain. It was my understanding that most airbag systems require 2 sensors to be triggered before an airbag deploys, but I did not design the system so I cannot comment for sure on this. There have also been situations where some of the airbag sensors (not necessarily BMW) had questionable solder joints, however, the solder joint problems usually caused airbag faults.

If just seems that if you end up with little to no body damage that I would question airbag deployments. Yes some potholes can be a rather severe hit, but again, if the suspension or wheel does not take one for the team, just the tire, I would be asking a lot of questions.
I doubt the stiffness of the chassis has anything to do with the deployment. The threshold for deployment was programmed just a tad on the sensitive side I think is a better call. Either way it's moot. Airbag popped and needs to be replaced. I think they're $50 on eBay and PASoft should be able to reset it, no? I've never explored the airbag options nor do I want to!
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 11:09 AM   #10
BimmersGarage
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Dallas, TX (USA)
Posts: 2,191
My Ride: E46 330i
Send a message via Skype™ to BimmersGarage
OP,
If you hit anything (pothole, road crack, curb,etc.) hard enough to have a SRS activate, then I'd say you have More than just a flat tire issue... (the rim may/will be bent.)

As suggested by other members, you may (will) have some suspension damage and will need to have tower cap, strut, FCAB checked out at the minimum. Then a re-alignment afterwards.

The dealer will be able to help you with the SRS and light. But, expect to pay $,$$$.

Good luck. Keep us posted.
BimmersGarage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 11:10 AM   #11
FenderGuy05
OEM ///Member
 
FenderGuy05's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Daly City
Posts: 944
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamsocne View Post
When I first joined a member mentioned hitting a pothole on a bridge near NY/NJ and the passenger airbag was an issue. Also, I never got a letter about the airbag recall and I am within the time frame. Anyone heard anything about that? No thread hijack intended.
I received a letter from BMW a few weeks ago. Let me know that they dont' have parts available yet but as soon as they were ready they'd send me another letter.

Maybe your car is lucky enough to not be effected
__________________
FenderGuy05 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2013, 11:13 AM   #12
FenderGuy05
OEM ///Member
 
FenderGuy05's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Daly City
Posts: 944
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Back to the OPs post, the tire may have some vibration due to age or some other issue. I have the same issue at this point.

I had my rims refinished, and one of the tires that was put on the car was from the spare compartment because the wheel was in better condition. Noticed some vibration/noise from the tire, put the old one on for a week or so and the noise went away. I put the other tire back on in a different location same vibration/noise. I'm going to have the tire swapped for the one in my spare compartment very soon.

Check the date stamp, I'm pretty sure my tire has a production date of 0102, first week of 2002.
__________________
FenderGuy05 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2013, 02:58 AM   #13
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
Quote:
Originally Posted by BimmersGarage View Post
OP,
If you hit anything (pothole, road crack, curb,etc.) hard enough to have a SRS activate, then I'd say you have More than just a flat tire issue... (the rim may/will be bent.)

As suggested by other members, you may (will) have some suspension damage and will need to have tower cap, strut, FCAB checked out at the minimum. Then a re-alignment afterwards.

The dealer will be able to help you with the SRS and light. But, expect to pay $,$$$.

Good luck. Keep us posted.
Sorry for the extremely late response everyone, but being new to all of this (this is my first car etc), I had to sit down and figure everything out slowly.

Here is what I ended up figured out:
1) No strut tower damage (Thank God)
2) My rear shocks still need to be replaced (seems do-able)
3) I had a front wheel bushing issue, most likely caused from this same pothole
4) My rims WERE bent, this what caused the flat (tire wasn't sealed anymore)
5) Airbag is still an issue

Here is what I ended up doing:
1) Filed a complaint to the NHTSA. Haven't heard anything back from them.
2) Took all my rims off and straightened them using a hammer (well the two on the left side that hit the pothole and were bent).
3) Replaced the front left wheel bushing. I probably should replace the front right one as well but money is tight right now.
4) Got new tires; I had the same ones on that were on the vehicle when I bought it. They were the stock tires as well (I had looked it up), so they may have been on there for 150k miles which is ridiculous and they were smooth enough to actually stand that theory but its irrelevant.

What I still need to do:
1) My next project is the rear shocks. I am going to get those replaced, I believe that is the reason why hitting the pothole caused so much more damage then it should have.
2) Replace the air bag/reset the light. I believe that if the airbag light is on I can't pass state inspection (anyone know for sure? in Virginia) so I have to get this done by May.


Thank you very much for all of your help. Sorry again for not keeping you guys up to date!
__________________
I am not a smart man.
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2013, 04:08 AM   #14
paraklas
OEM ///Member
 
paraklas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Cyprus
Posts: 5,942
My Ride: ESS TS2 320ci
1. can't comment on this
2. I'd take them to a shop that repairs rims, mine appeared nice and shiny but they had a slight not visible bent that cause all sorts of vibrations/steering shake
3. yeah, better done in pairs
4. good call

1. at this mileage, they're probably shot and so as the front struts. rears are a 40-minute job, fronts are a bit more involving
2. seen a lot of used airbags online, easy to replace and then clear the airbag light to have a functional srs
__________________
http://www.argyrides.eu/makeyourownsig.jpg
paraklas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 03:57 PM   #15
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
So I just got a call from BMW USA 6 months later... Recall 99V-063 technically doesn't pertain to my vehicle. Basically based on my VIN my vehicle was a few months off from being effected by this. Now I don't know what that means in terms of me getting helped or not because clearly the same exact thing that caused that recall happened to my vehicle so maybe they will extend the window of vehicles effected? Probably not though, it's an old vehicle and I doubt it's even worth recalling at this point.

They said they will call back in 3-5 business days..

Quote:
The side airbag system is sensitive to certain non-crash impacts such as contacting large
potholes or curbs at substantial speed. This could cause the side airbag and Head Protection
System (HPS) of the vehicle to deploy without an actual side crash or impact severe enough to
cause significant visual damage to the vehicle
Link to recall: http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/atta...ood-720499.pdf
__________________
I am not a smart man.

Last edited by TheMagicalHindu; 03-31-2014 at 03:57 PM.
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 08:57 PM   #16
dknightd
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: upstate NY
Posts: 1,044
My Ride: 2002 330 cic
Might be too late, but did you call your insurance company?
dknightd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 09:18 PM   #17
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
Nah. It's a $50 airbag that has a DIY on this site. Not worth getting insurance involved.
__________________
I am not a smart man.
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-31-2014, 09:44 PM   #18
epfenninger
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Groton, Ma
Posts: 102
My Ride: 2001 325xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by paraklas View Post
1. can't comment on this
2. I'd take them to a shop that repairs rims, mine appeared nice and shiny but they had a slight not visible bent that cause all sorts of vibrations/steering shake
3. yeah, better done in pairs
4. good call

1. at this mileage, they're probably shot and so as the front struts. rears are a 40-minute job, fronts are a bit more involving
2. seen a lot of used airbags online, easy to replace and then clear the airbag light to have a functional srs

You're not supposed to bend alloy wheels (assuming they are alloys) because they become weak and are not as malleable as the steel wheels. And no tire is made to last 150k, the best that I know on the market is I believe the Hankook Road Handler which can last 90k but that means that your alignment is perfect all the time for that 90k, which is pretty much impossible unless you got an alignment like everyday. Good luck and have fun in your new Bimmer though, and trust me, being a college student an owning an older Bimmer can get hard


Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
epfenninger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2014, 10:43 AM   #19
TheMagicalHindu
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: College Park MD
Posts: 112
My Ride: '99 323ci +'00 328i
Update they want me to take it to my local stealership and get a diagnostic which will cost $200... and then maybe (probably) they will fix it... I think I'm just going to get a replacement airbag and use this DIY http://www.e46fanatics.com/forum/sho...d.php?t=824294
__________________
I am not a smart man.

Last edited by TheMagicalHindu; 04-07-2014 at 10:43 AM.
TheMagicalHindu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2014, 11:09 AM   #20
jdstrickland
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Murrieta, CA
Posts: 7,099
My Ride: '94 325iC & '00 323i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mango View Post
^Yep unless the OP's car is mangled, he may have a good case that the sensors or programmed thresholds not working as designed.
I _think_ the issue is that the firmware is not up to date. One of the things they address when they re-flash the car is the SRS. I'm not entirely certain, but I think there are emissions related thresholds that are also opened up to prevent a false positive of a fault -- that's a double negative if there ever was one.

When I bought my daughter's '00 323, it had some issues that I had to straighten out, one of them was the Check Engine light that was rooted in a short inside of the MAF. I had the car put on a GT1 diagnostic scanner to find out that the MAF was fried, and the technician also said that the firmware was out of date. The new firmware is reported to correct firing of the SRS when a pot hole is hit, and it's supposed to change the parameters of the emissions control settings so that sensors that are operating nominally are not within the min or max settings of the firmware.

Basically, they wrote the original firmware to look for a normal input in the range of 4 to 15, for example, but the sensor that provides the input gives a normal reading in a range of 7 to 20, so an input of 16 is okay for the sensor but out of range for the firmware.

The independent BMW service center where I took my car re-flashed it for about $80. This included the diagnostic that said the MAF was shorted out. The diagnostic and the firmware update took less than about 10 minutes.
jdstrickland is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:16 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use