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Steve, BMW Expert
Category: BMW
Satisfied Customers: 25238
Experience:  BMW Expert
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BMW 5 series ongoing problems

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Hi I have a BMW 5 series, it's 1.5 years old, I have had continuous problems with it, it has been in and out the work shop for investigations, on one occasion for 5 weeks, the stop start would not start the car, they were unable to locate the problem, but changed the clutch? They overfilled the car with oil, 2 months later I got a warning from the computer advising oil level too high. Then I got a warning from the computer saying drive train, continue journey at moderate speed, full performance not available, the car cut out at the traffic lights, I was unable to start it. I got breakdown to come out, he plugged in a diagnostic, it pointed to the fuel pump, when he opened the boot and pulled up the lining to get to the battery and control unit it was almost completely submerged in water! We took pictures and I video recorded it. He said he had never seen anything like it, my question is, just how much damaged has this done, and could this have been the problem along, since I bought the vehical. Any advise would be good, many thank you,



what model year is this vehicle?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Steve

It's a 520 manual diesel, 2011

Best regards


water on the electronics can cause all sorts or bizarre issues, so it is possible that this was your problem all along


I am surprised that your garage could not diagnose this.


As far as advise, if it was a main dealer doing the work, I would involve BMW customer service and complain and complain and complain to whoever will listen and run the issue up the chain as far as possible. The more you complain, the more likely you are to get something from them.


You can also complain to the management chain at the dealer.


If it was a non dealer or non certified by BMW garage, then all you can do is complain to the management there.


your best bet is if it was a main dealer, to complain to BMW. They don't like it when a customer gets the runaround and poor service like this from a dealer.


Sorry if you were hoping for a different answer, please don't shoot the messenger - I can only give the honest answer, which I have. Please remember that a low rating PUNISHES me for my honest and prompt response, and I receive nothing for my time and answer until a positive rating is clicked.

Please let me know if you have further questions. Please do not forget to click a positive rating as this is the only way I receive credit for my answer, thank you. Best wishes with your vehicle.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Steve,
The car is from a BMW dealer franchise, but we will go to m
BMW direct. What I was looking for was some technical answers of the water damage, I can sent you a video of the boot with the electronics and battery submerged if this helps, so I have some technical info to bat back at them





this is the question you asked:


"my question is, just how much damaged has this done, and could this have been the problem along, since I bought the vehical. Any advise would be good, many thank you,"


this does not request technical answers. I did my best to answer what was posted


what technical answers do you want?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
What components can it affect? What it could lead to, I am not a mechanic that's why I am seeking advice, as I know when the garage calls me they will try and confuse the situation with technical jargon, and that I should not worry it's all been fixed and parts replaced, I only have 18,000 miles on the clock and look after this car

please post images and the part numbers if possible from the wet items.


Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Do you have an email address I can send an attachment to? Or can you tell me how to attach the image on this page
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Steve, how do I post the images on this site? There is no attachment facility that I can see? Do you have an email address I can send them to?

please list out the part numbers of the wet items here.


you can send pictures to support at and reference this question, they will forward them to me

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Steve, I have contacted customer support, all being well you should have the images shortly
Please also list the part number as I requested.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Steve, the car is in the BMW workshop, you will see from the images what has been submerged, the rescue man did not give me a list of part numbers, he just said the whole control unit was fully submerged

I will review the photos when they are relayed to me. In the meantime, it would be very helpful if you can call the garage and ask them to confirm which "control unit" they are referring to and what its part number is.


overall, if anything gets wet, it needs to be replaced. And, these cars are very sensitive to voltage fluctuations, so, if the battery electronics were wet, this could very easily cause voltage issues and signal interruptions, which can set off all kinds of random warnings.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Steve, can you confirm you have received the images? I also forgot to mention when they serviced the car, they overfilled the engine oil, however the car did not throw up a warning until 14 weeks later! They took the car back in , gave us a courtesy car, returned the car, fully valeted, full tank of fuel, and said it would not cause damage. I have asked for a full print out of all work carried out on the car, lucky I have also kept a log, as they have omitted the engine oil situation, and say it has not been logged that this happened. I have called the garage now twice to establish what parts are being replaced, on both occasions the manager was busy and said he would call back, so far no call. Best regards. Tracy
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Other.It had to send images to Steve, however delay in sending them and my bmw expert is offline now, and I need help just now before going into dealership

the images have not been relayed to me.


if you wish, you can try to post the images to a photo sharing site and then post the link to the images here.



Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Steve, I spoke to, I have emailed them to them, they assured me they would pass them on. What is a photo sharing site?

a photo sharing site is a site where you post images or files to share with friends or to back them up




I have received your files


this does not change my answer


any wet modules will need to be replaced


if they were wet, they could have easily set off phony warnings since this will cause internal shorts and cause them to sense signals and faults that are not present, and can interrupt power distribution - this in itself can cause other systems to set off phony warnings.

please let me know if you require further information, otherwise please select a positive rating, thank you

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