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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 06-17-2012, 10:30 PM   #21
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I was reading this thread and I thought I somehow wandered into a Food Channel forum or somewhere. Lol.
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:27 AM   #22
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http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/preventative

lol
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:27 AM   #23
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Replaced my voltage regulator last month or so after the dreaded red battery light came up.. Used this guide: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=583423
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:34 AM   #24
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Replaced my voltage regulator last month or so after the dreaded red battery light came up.. Used this guide: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=583423

you're supposed to do it before!! not after!!
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Old 06-18-2012, 12:40 AM   #25
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you're supposed to do it before!! not after!!
I know, I know.. But in all honesty I didn't know much about the cause until then. All good, though. No ill effects to my battery or anything else since I immediately got to it as soon as the light came up (funny thing - the battery was replaced a week before the voltage regulator incident.. ).

Another reason to be grateful for this forum, and be proud to be a part of the community.
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Old 06-18-2012, 01:31 AM   #26
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nice
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Old 06-18-2012, 09:43 AM   #27
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That's an American dictionary.

http://oxforddictionaries.com/defini...s&q=preventive

rotflmao
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Old 06-18-2012, 09:49 AM   #28
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That's an American dictionary.

http://oxforddictionaries.com/defini...s&q=preventive

rotflmao
http://oxforddictionaries.com/defini...q=preventative

Both are acceptable
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Old 06-18-2012, 09:55 AM   #29
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Sure. Why replace your entire cooling system just once, when replacing it twice works just as well?
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Old 06-18-2012, 10:23 AM   #30
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Sure. Why replace your entire cooling system just once, when replacing it twice works just as well?
now we're getting somewhere
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Old 11-09-2012, 11:51 AM   #31
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Just thought I'd bump this since we seem to be getting a rash of voltage regulator failures!

Reminder: REPLACE your voltage regulator on a PM basis! Don't be reactive, be proactive!
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Old 11-09-2012, 12:13 PM   #32
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Mango, I found out that some E46 models built in 2003 have a 120-amp alternator more commonly associated with the Z4, making it rather difficult to find the relevant VR.

If your alternator has the oval electrical connector/plug like mine did above on the rear of the alternator, then you need the VR with Bosch part number F00MA45219.

That number is not easy to come by -- make a note of it if you have the relevant alternator.

I found this out after trying to order a new voltage regulator using the VIN from my ZHP which resulted in this part (note the rectangular socket on the voltage regulator)



This is what I would assume the majority of owners have on their alternators....not me. After doing some more research, it became apparent that perhaps my Bosh alternator was for another type of car so I did some searching and found a link on this forum which seemed to answer my question concerning my dilemma...

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=583423&page=6

When I looked at my alternator this is what my voltage regulator/plug looked like.

The plug from my car (D-shaped not rectangular)


The BOSH label on the alternator


The original Voltage Regulator on the alternator



Ordered the part using the p/n highlighted in red (above) and got this part



Here's my new part



Just wanted to put this out there for anyone who happens to have this type of 120A alternator installed in their 3-series I also replaced mine as preventive maintenance... Good thread!
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Old 11-09-2012, 12:48 PM   #33
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thanks for the info. it does seem strange how bmw used different alternator plugs for a very small amount of E46s. this means the wiring harness was different along w/ the part. i cant find your voltage regulator anywhere. where did you buy it? Seems its spec'd for the Z4?

Seems these are the part #s:

12317559183 Square plug voltage regulator
12317515319 Round/oval plug voltage regulator
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Old 11-09-2012, 12:56 PM   #34
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So my alt is at 240K miles, I'm pretty sure, but I'm wondering how to tell if I'm bosch or valeo...know there's a thread with pics and believe it's just different pulley spacing (sort of thing). Is that right?

I'm putting out 13.6-7 V and have been for the last two years. So, I'm curious...maybe stupid question, but what V was your alt putting out before and after the VR swap?
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Old 11-09-2012, 01:09 PM   #35
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So my alt is at 240K miles, I'm pretty sure, but I'm wondering how to tell if I'm bosch or valeo...know there's a thread with pics and believe it's just different pulley spacing (sort of thing). Is that right?

I'm putting out 13.6-7 V and have been for the last two years. So, I'm curious...maybe stupid question, but what V was your alt putting out before and after the VR swap?
While driving, mine was a solid 14.2v
Idle, depending on what accessories I ran, 13.2-13.9v

I'm curious if this changes after installing the new VR I ordered..
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Old 11-09-2012, 01:11 PM   #36
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So my alt is at 240K miles, I'm pretty sure, but I'm wondering how to tell if I'm bosch or valeo...know there's a thread with pics and believe it's just different pulley spacing (sort of thing). Is that right?

I'm putting out 13.6-7 V and have been for the last two years. So, I'm curious...maybe stupid question, but what V was your alt putting out before and after the VR swap?
Use your eyes to look. Your alternator should have come out 3 or 4 times already during your ownership of the car for nearby repairs/PM.

Anyway i'm pretty sure my battery is 12.1 off and 14.2 while running. i'll check again today
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Old 11-09-2012, 03:36 PM   #37
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Anyway i'm pretty sure my battery is 12.1 off and 14.2 while running. i'll check again today
Hi Mango. If your battery is really only @ 12.1 while the car is turned off, you may want to have it checked.

Per the attached battery voltage table I have, a fully charged 12V battery should be @ 12.7 volts (after resting for 2 hrs @ 25 degrees Celsius which equals 77 Fahrenheit). A 12.2 level = 60% charge, a 12.05 level = 50% charge, so a 12.1 level would be only around a 53.3% charge if I did the math correctly.
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Old 11-09-2012, 03:53 PM   #38
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Hi Mango. If your battery is really only @ 12.1 while the car is turned off, you may want to have it checked.

Per the attached battery voltage table I have, a fully charged 12V battery should be @ 12.7 volts (after resting for 2 hrs @ 25 degrees Celsius which equals 77 Fahrenheit). A 12.2 level = 60% charge, a 12.05 level = 50% charge, so a 12.1 level would be only around a 53.3% charge if I did the math correctly.
i probably read it wrong then. cause everything on my car is brand new. i'll check it in a few minutes
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Old 11-09-2012, 04:05 PM   #39
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There is some voltage drop to account for when checking via the OBC readout. Those numbers would be more valid with a DMM directly on the battery terminals.

As far as the OP, c'mon Mango, it looks like there's at least 30K more miles on that VR!
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Old 11-09-2012, 05:19 PM   #40
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There is some voltage drop to account for when checking via the OBC readout. Those numbers would be more valid with a DMM directly on the battery terminals.

As far as the OP, c'mon Mango, it looks like there's at least 30K more miles on that VR!
My battery tested at 121 just now. (12.1v) after sitting 1.5 hrs since my last drive. I drove and at idle it reads 14.0 and 14.1v. At speed 14.3-14.4. I have absolutely no starting or other electrical problems. I wonder if 12.1 via the OBC is healthy? I will have Autozone (49DL) replace it after work if its not running correctly! Or maybe i'll take a dmm directly to it as you say.

As far as the VR goes, yep... I still have it in my drawer as a spare along with all my other "good" parts
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