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E36 M3 (1992-1999) {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999


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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 03:40:44 AM   #1
djjvr
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Default OBC light bulb replacement question

So I hate to ask this, because it may be taken as a dumb question. Anyway I need to replace a bulb on the left side of my OBC since it was dim. So I was curious if it was the bulb since when I pulled it the bulb looked fine. So I switched the end one for the middle one and now neither bulb illuminates. So i am curious if it's because the OBC was not disconnected, or perhaps there is a short going on. The thing that has me confused is that the two bulbs look fine so I don't see why they wouldn't illuminate. If anyone has any insight to what I could be doing wrong I'd appreciate it.
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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 03:44:16 AM   #2
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Default Re: OBC light bulb replacement question

If you have a multi meter you can check the continuity of the bulb. If they do, clean the contacts and go from there.
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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 03:48:09 AM   #3
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Default Re: OBC light bulb replacement question

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Originally Posted by 97_4dr_5spd_m3 View Post
If you have a multi meter you can check the continuity of the bulb. If they do, clean the contacts and go from there.
I'll borrow one from my friend and check them. The contacts look clean to me which is what puzzled me, but who knows.
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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 04:35:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: OBC light bulb replacement question

I'm that guy that snatches up good-looking OBCs at the wrecking yards and tests them in my own car to make sure they're good for resale.

One thing I have noticed is that a single bad bulb can cause weird effects with the rest of the OBC illumination. Switching them around doesn't solve the problem and as you mentioned, can even make the rest fail to function. Replacing the single bad bulb with a known good one usually doesn't solve the problem either. I suspect the illumination circuit in the OBC is sensitive to the close condition of each bulb, but I'm not an engineer.

I have never dug deeper into the issue because I've found if one bulb is bad, simply replacing all 4 has always solved the lighting issue and 4 bulbs costs about $6.

Good luck!

Last edited by Jrrrrrrr; Tue, May-01-2012 at 04:39:00 AM.
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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 01:53:38 PM   #5
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Default Re: OBC light bulb replacement question

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Originally Posted by Jrrrrrrr View Post
I'm that guy that snatches up good-looking OBCs at the wrecking yards and tests them in my own car to make sure they're good for resale.
If you ever happen to run into an 11 button in good condition, I'd be interested in it.

Thanks,

Dave
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Old Tue, May-01-2012, 04:04:44 PM   #6
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Default Re: OBC light bulb replacement question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jrrrrrrr View Post
I'm that guy that snatches up good-looking OBCs at the wrecking yards and tests them in my own car to make sure they're good for resale.

One thing I have noticed is that a single bad bulb can cause weird effects with the rest of the OBC illumination. Switching them around doesn't solve the problem and as you mentioned, can even make the rest fail to function. Replacing the single bad bulb with a known good one usually doesn't solve the problem either. I suspect the illumination circuit in the OBC is sensitive to the close condition of each bulb, but I'm not an engineer.

I have never dug deeper into the issue because I've found if one bulb is bad, simply replacing all 4 has always solved the lighting issue and 4 bulbs costs about $6.

Good luck!
Well I'll give that a try. The weird thing was is that sometimes that last bulb would work, then it would go out again. So I'm curious if it is in fact the bulb. Though like I said once I placed the other one there that bulb wouldn't work in it's original position either.
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Discussing OBC light bulb replacement question in the E36 M3 (1992-1999) Forum - {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999 at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)