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Old 08-29-2004, 07:06 AM   #1
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Default Big Problem: Car won't start

my car ('97 'ti sport) will not start. i'm hoping someone will have some good ideas for me.

when I put the key in the ignition, the lock cylinder will either

1) rotate a full 360 degrees and never engage, or:
2) travel about a 1/4" and stop, but not engage the starter.
3) I can pull the key out in any position and the the lock cylinder will rotate freely.

other oddities:

1) the odometer reads 8888E when the key is in the ignition. When it is pressed to the stop, the normal mileage will show up. The trip odometer reset itself.

2) clock is not getting juice. Radio doesn't get juice unless I can get the key against the stop.

This just started happening tonight. I just got back from a long trip, it ran fine. However, today, a couple of things happened prior to this.

1) While cleaning the car, I left the lights on ~15 mins and ran the battery down. I turned it off for 5 minutes and it had enough amps to crank over.

2) I replaced the fuse to the fog lights today (it had burned out at least a week ago)

3) turn signals stopped working just before this happened (fuses are OK)

I have no idea if any of this has to do with the current issue, just wanted to let you all know.

Has anything like this ever happened to any of you? any ideas? I don't know if its a bad lock cylinder, goofy electrical problem, or what. I really don't want to have to tow it to the dealer. I can't get it out of park, and getting it out of the garage is going to be a bitch. Is there anything i can do to get it to start so i can get it out of the garage? Does anyone have a balpark cost if it is a lock cylinder?

help is appreciated. thanks.
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Old 08-29-2004, 12:14 PM   #2
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Batteries in these cars only last a few years. YMMV.
How old is the battery?
BMW CCA #146825
1995 BMW 318ti Club Sport ē 1996 BMW 328ti ē 2003 MINI Cooper S
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Old 08-29-2004, 02:48 PM   #3
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Problem created, and fixed, by my bone-headed self. When I was looking at the turn signal problem, I accidentally pulled fuse 31, and it was still loose this morning when I looked at it. Fuse 31 controls the anti-theft system. When I put the fuse back in, the car started right up. I don't know if that was the whole problem, but it seems good for now. I will post again if I have any more problems.

I am happy to at least serve as a bad example.
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Old 11-05-2004, 07:53 PM   #4
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hello i have a very similar recurring problem i get weird
8888e in the odometer, the clock will reset and the low fuel light will stay on. Also, this will always trigger the airbag light.

my radio WILL always work though. This problem doesn't happen all the time, and will ALWAYS fix itself given 5-30 minutes.

Please help!!
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Old 11-05-2004, 09:09 PM   #5
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I can almost guarantee is one of your modules.
Why don't you disconnect the battery for 1/2 hour, take the glove box out and clean and plug and unplug your GM V, and other modules.
When the cluster acts up, the source is the General module. JUST AN IDEA... Why not try...
1995 318Ti S52 OBD1 conversion
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Old 11-17-2004, 01:19 PM   #6
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hello update to my problem.....although it hasn't happened for quite a while (which is a good thing)

i forgot to mention that sometimes when this happens a repeated clicking noise can be heard coming from the instrument cpanel, and the low fuel light and odometer will stay partially lit (even with key removed). What would cause a clicking noise to come from the instrument panel?

maurolin, i really have no idea what to do about that, but this is something that my bmw dealer should have checked?
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Old 11-17-2004, 01:48 PM   #7
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Regarding the starting problem.......
One of a frequent issue with the Ti-s is a locking ignition. It can lock when start-up and burn the starter. The previous owner of my '97 Ti had that problem and replaced the key ignition cylinder and solved the problem.
As with Instrument cluster problems, get it checked with the dealer. I usually have this policy of not tampering with electrical systems in my car, since I am not an electrical engineer or do not pretend to know what electrical diagrams mean. Unless we all do i think computer and electrical systems better be left with experts.

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