definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
24,000 miles

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problem #2

Mar 232009

(reported on)

330 6-cyl

  • miles
Safety related defect with BMW E46 models; petition for formal investigation pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30162 and 49 cfr part 552 the consumer stated the E46 models as well as his 2002 330I had problems with taillights, brake lights and/or turn signal lights.

- Bedford, TX, USA

problem #1

Jul 262007

330 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 48,000 miles
Failure of the turn signals, brake lights and rear parking lamps of the 1999-2005 BMW 3 series ("E46"). also noted are forward turn signal lighting failures. The problem may involve two unrelated component failures: Chronically overheating/partially melted 7-pin wiring connectors (at the rear lamp cluster) and corroded bulb sockets (at the front turn signals). (the first problem may be more common in warm weather states.) by way of background, I have owned three E46 model BMW's, all purchased new. All have had repeated, yet intermittent turn signal and exterior lighting problems. Most recently I noted another intermittent failure of all the lights in the left rear lamp cluster of my 2002 BMW 330I with ~48,000 miles. After another careful inspection, to include removing each bulb and checking its filament, resistance and connection cleanliness, I found something I had not previously noted--the 7-pin wiring connector was melted at terminal #2, the terminal that appears to be the common ground for all the lamps in the cluster. The car's wiring harness connector (female) and the male pin (#2) both show excessive resistance/heat damage. I have removed it from my car and taken some photographs for submission via an email account to Mr. Ajit alkondon at dot. The part as installed in my car has the following identification: 63.21-6 907 935 date code: 19.9.01 (for September 19th, 2001) time code: 15:54 as an aside, a local BMW dealership has previously replaced the rear bulb carrier on the right side of the car. While it has helped, I am still left with chronic, yet highly intermittent, lamp failures, (as indicated by the car's warning system) for _both_ rear lamp assemblies. At the front of the car, all three E46's I owned have had forward turn signal sockets replaced for corrosion, usually within the first few years or months of ownership.

- Bedford, TX, USA