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      01-07-2011, 02:41 PM   #1

Drives: 2006 325i
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Calgary

iTrader: (0)

Electrical issues after car wash!?

Hello everyone,

I have a few very strange problems with my car that I'm hoping you can help me troubleshoot.

Last night, I went through a touch-less car wash (water spray only) and then parked outside after the wash. When I went to start my car, I put the key fob in and pressed the Start button and nothing happened. I waited for a little bit and tried again and it started. When I got home, I shut the car off and tried to start it again, but it wouldn't.

I did a Check System in the iDrive and the check turned up no issues. I hooked up the laptop and saw that there were all kinds of ECU error codes (attached). I cleared the codes and tried to start the car again with no luck.

I hooked up a charger to make sure it wasn't a battery issue. The car still wouldn't start.

I tried my wife's fob to make sure it wasn't a key battery dead. The car still wouldn't start.

I tried unlocking and locking with the fob. It was then that I noticed other oddities:
  • The "light blink" confirmation only worked when unlocking, but not when locking as it usually does for me.
  • When I put the fob in and turned my lights to "Full On", only the parking lights would come on
  • The steering wheel wouldn't unlock when I put my fob in

For me, the logical explanation is that water got into some electrical system and messed with the car's operation. What supports this is that after some time had passed, things just started consistently working properly. Every time I tried to start the car, everything would work fine.

The other issue that I noticed after the car was now starting properly was that the right Xenon light is now a "pinkish" hue instead of the white/blue hue (like the left light currently shows).

Is this a dead Xenon bulb that coincidentally blew at the same time? Or, is there possibly water in the bulb electronics messing with the operation?

I'm going insane at this point. If it's a general electrical problem that others have experienced, I'd like to get the car into service. If it's just a water infiltration issue, I'd like to know where the most likely spot would be (headlight seals?).

Any assistance is very much appreciated. Thank you!

My details:
- 2006 325i - iDrive, Nav, Bluetooth
- MTEC halo light replacements
Attached Images
File Type: pdf Error codes 2011-01-06.PDF (4.6 KB, 213 views)
Appreciate 0


electrical, lights, starting

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