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Old 06-26-2010, 11:38 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 9
My Ride: 2001 330Ci
2001 330 Ci - Won't start - Xeons on with key

Hey everyone.

Been lurking for quite some time and ran into a problem I have not seen before, so I started this thread.

I have an '01 330Ci. The car has 110,000 miles, is all stock except for a pioneer head unit, and has run pretty well for me since I bought it a few years ago.

Today I went and tried to start the car, and got a clicking sound from the starter, pretty typical of a low battery.

I checked to make sure there was nothing turned on out of the ordinary, got the car rolling down the alley I live on, and popped the clutch to get it going to see what it would do.

After stopping once the car started fine, and after my 2nd stop I got the same symptoms. Again made sure to park on a hill, so I bump started it and drove home.

I let the car sit for an hour and went out to run to autozone to have the battery tested. This time when trying to start the car it was dark, and I noticed something odd. The xenon's came on with the key, even though the headlight switch was off. To the best of my knowledge there is no auto headlight function in the car, and they have always been off when starting the car.

Another thing I noticed is that after 15-20 seconds, the headlights turn off and the car starts without issue, although the interior lights do look a tad bit on the dark side.

Could the head lights coming on be an issue related to a low battery?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks Guys
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Old 06-27-2010, 07:55 AM   #2
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Location: NJ
Posts: 23,701
My Ride: '99 328i 300K miles
Almost all electrical issues your car will have 'could' be battery related.

Check the voltage. S/b 12V when off and about 14v when on.

If the bat hasn't been replaced in some years, start there...start there in any case and move on from there. If not 14v when on, then look to alt/vr

Of course, check fuses next (or before).

As far as the headlights, I'm not sure...though it almost sounds like they're set up as drls. But also, anytime someone adds aftermarket stuff too (not sure if your xenons are aftermarket or not), it's often an issue with improper wiring...getting power from the wrong place, etc.


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Old 06-27-2010, 10:13 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Pittsburgh
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My Ride: 2001 330Ci
Thanks Doug.

I'm going for a new battery tomorrow since as far as I can tell it's original, and the indicator glass is black.

The xenon's are the factory BMW units, and I have never had any problems with them.

I did have a blown fuse for my OBC and dash indicators which I replaced the other day before this started, I'll check that out too.
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Old 06-27-2010, 10:55 PM   #4
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well its happened to me, but it turned out that my connections were loose.
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Old 06-29-2010, 01:51 PM   #5
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Replaced that battery and all is well.

Thanks for the replies
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