Take a look at the websites below before you post a "new" question, they have lots of great information on the E39 BMW ranging from common problems/fixes to some nice modifications and may already hold the answer to your question.
Finally, read your owner's manual to make sure that the information that you are seeking is not sitting there waiting for you find it. If someone responds to your question with “RTFM”, that is a gentle suggestion that you should “Read The Fricking Manual”, and that an answer that is better than any Forum member could provide is contained within.
told that Roadfly management would prefer if Off Topic (OT) questions
related to BMW's were posted in the "Lounge"
There is a "Test Forum" available (right column) for you to experiment with pictures and to see how your signature looks:
1. Bentley Publishers has finally released a repair manual.
TIS (Technical Information System) and ETK (Electronic parts catalog,
EPC) that is used at BMW dealers for parts and technical information is
available at the Central
Lettershop (specialty tools too),
or if you search eBay Motors
for "BMW TIS ETK" or our very own Roadfly
you can find a used or older version for a much more reasonable
3. The BMW TIS is
also available online at http://www.bmwtis.com,
but is quite expensive.
Diagnostic Tools: If your looking for repair manuals, then you are looking to turn some wrenches on your E39. Roadfly can help you diagnose a problem down to a handful of items, but one of these scan tools can tell you exactly which component has failed. Here are some of the Forum favorites:
Common BMW acronyms: http://www.mbmw.com/bmw_technical_acronyms.htm
ASC, ASC+T, and DSC?: http://www.mz3.net/articles/115.html
And most of all, have fun here and don't take any comments the wrong way. There is a great group of people here, but we do indeed enjoy taking little jabs at each other.
BMW Similes – A light hearted look at common E39 problems:
The E39 is a benchmark for all Sports Sedans, the V-8 provides ample power for great acceleration, sticks to corners like a sports car, can deliver the family to grandma's in comfort, and still manage to be one of the best looking cars in the parking lot. The E39 is also equipped with some of the most advanced safety systems of any road going automobile with features like standard airbags, side airbags, head airbags, Anti-lock Brakes, and Dynamic Stability Control. BMWCAR Magazine can even be quoted as saying the following about the E39 5-Series, "I'm going to stick my neck out here and say that this is the finest car that BMW has ever built" (Oct 2002, page 18). Take the list below for what its worth, some are just observations, some are problems that show up enough on the Forum to warrant their listing.
E39 BMWs commonly do lots of
1. Its door seals will “Creak like a wooden sailing ship”, unless you replace the door seals (temp fix).
2. Its Air Conditioning will have the “aroma of a used gym sock”, unless you occasionally disinfect the A/C system.
3. Its front brakes will “Squeak like a scared mouse”, unless you properly lube the brake pad attachment points.
4. Has an electrical system “as stable as MS Windows”, and most electrical glitches can be “fixed” by rebooting the system by removing the appropriate fuses, or disconnecting the battery.
5. The steering wheel will Shimmy like Anna Nicole Smith trying to get into a pair of Guess Jeans (most commonly affects 528/530 Sport models) unless you get just the right torque on the lug bolts and PSI in the tires, Maybe.
6. As pixels burn out the MID computer text will resemble the language for the blind known as braille.
7. Electric auxiliary “pusher” fan will make your car sound like a jet ready for take-off, but only if it works.
8. Rear Window Regulator will “let you down” only when it is most inconvenient for you.
9. Radiator Neck will break off with no warning (at driver side top hose).
10. Catalytic Converters will sound like they full of marbles when they are ready to fail, and are good for about 60k Miles.
11. The Camshaft Position Sensor (CPS) is so reliable that you should carry a spare in your trunk, I do...
12. The Final Stage Resistor will have no problem varying the airflow in your car, but the problem is that it does it even when its not supposed to, until to totally quits that is, then you will have no airflow.
13. Don't even think about using the "canholders" to hold any unsealed container lest you prepare to clean your pants, the car interior, and replace any electronics that were damaged.
14. You say that you like the “Dukes of Hazard”? Well I hope so because you'll be forced to enter and exit your car through open windows like Bo and Luke Duke when the interior door handles break off in your hand. This is the true reason that BMWs can roll the windows up and down from the key.
15. With the manual transmission, no matter how quickly you lift your foot off the clutch pedal, the clutch always engages the flywheel at a constant rate. What's up with that? I'm not even going to try this one, Dave Z has it nailed. http://www.zeckhausen.com/CDV.htm
Note: In no way should I be considered a representative of Roadfly and this information does not necessarily reflect the opinions of Roadfly.
Back to the E39 Forum at Roadfly: http://bimmer.roadfly.org/bmw/forums/e39/