BMW electrical problems 3-series

BMW electrical problems 3-series

The BMW 3-Series is one of the best BMW models to acquire. This is because it is very reliable, fuel-efficient, comfortable, durable, and fun to drive. However, this series has its issues that interested buyers should know about. One of these problems is electrical issues. But what electrical problems does the BMW 3-Series face?

Common BMW 3-Series electrical problems are battery issues, ignition problems, a blown fuse, faulty wiring, faulty alternator, a steering wheel lock, A/C blower stopped blowing air, windshield wipers moving, and car taking longer to start. The good news is that most of these issues are easy to fix.

What are the common electrical problems with BMW 3-Series?

Battery issues

The main cause of most electrical problems in the BMW 3-Series is a bad battery or dying battery. Some of the signs of a dead battery are a steering wheel lock, problems starting the car, and a warning light. Most BMW drivers contribute to the dead or dying battery by leaving electrical components on while the car is parked.

The best solution is to replace the bad or dying battery with a new one. It is vital to replace the battery every four years if you want to fully utilize it.

  BMW 216D Active Tourer problems

Ignition problems

The ignition switch is what provides your car with the kick it needs to start. Thus, if the switch isn’t working properly, starting your car will be a huge problem. Besides, it’s advised not to start your car at all as you may end up causing more damage.

What’s more, steering issues can come up if the key refuses to turn the ignition. However, you should never force the key, as it can snap off. Most ignition issues are caused by the BMW’s onboard computer, more so if the steering lock symbol lights up on your car’s dashboard.

Whatever the ignition problem, it should be dealt with swiftly to avoid aggravating the problem.

A blown fuse

A fuse is one of the most important electrical components in your car. This is because they are designed to blow to protect your car from the worst electrical issues. Therefore, if you’re having electrical problems, the first place to check is if you have a blown fuse. 

A faulty alternator

The alternator is very important as it recycles energy to charge your battery while the car is moving. Hence, if the alternator belt is broken or not working correctly, you may start having issues, such as ailing power windows, a radio that isn’t working, and dim or malfunctioning lights.

Faulty wiring

Faulty wiring is also a major cause of electrical problems experienced in the BMW 3-Series. So, before you conclude most of your electrical issues like lights or widow regulators, you should ensure that the cables are not broken or loose.

Car taking longer to start

This is a common problem in used or old BMW 3-Series models. If your car fails to start or takes longer to start, the culprit may be a dead or dying battery or a bad ignition switch. Test the battery or take your car to the mechanic to find out what’s the cause. Nonetheless, replacing the battery should fix the issue.

  Common BMW V8 engine problems

Windshield wipers moving

This is another common electrical issue in BMW 3-Series. If the cables that connect the windshield wipers are faulty, it can cause the wipers to move continuously or not to move at all. If the cables are detached, then the windshield regulator won’t work and it will stop working. Ensure to fix the disconnected wires to fix this problem.

The A/C blower motor stopped blowing air

Your car’s air conditioner is very vital as it regulates the temperature in the car. So, if the A/C stops blowing air, this is a great concern and it should be addressed immediately. Some of the electrical issues that cause the A/C bower to malfunction are a blown fuse, faulty relay, malfunctioned resistor, or a control module malfunction.

A steering wheel lock

It is common for the BMW steering wheel to lock if the battery is worn out or if the car has a defective IBS sensor. So, the first to do to fix this problem is to check if your battery is dying or already dead. Replacing the battery should fix this problem.


What are the common problems with the BMW 3-Series?

Apart from having electrical problems, the BMW S-Series also registers different problems. Some of them include transmission issues, engine problems, coolant leaks, rear wipers stopped working, overheating engine, loss of power steering, engine stalling, and much more.

Even though the BMW 3-series has multiple problems, it is very reliable. Regardless, good maintenance will minimize most of these issues and prolong the lifespan of the car.

  Common problems with BMW iDrive

What causes electrical problems in a BMW?

There are several things that can cause electrical problems in your car and they include a dead battery, damaged or bad wiring, and a blown electrical fuse. Hence, if your car is having electrical problems, these are the main three things to look out for.

Can electrical problems cause the airbag to be deployed on the BMW 3-series?

Yes, some electrical issues, such as a faulty isolation switch can make the airbag to be deployed. This is a common issue in some BMW 3-series models. If this happens, you will have to confirm if the isolation switch is bad and have it replaced by a trustworthy mechanic.

What are the indications that your BMW has electrical problems?

Some of the signs that indicate your BMW 3-Series has electrical issues are interior or dashboard lights don’t illuminate properly, the car won’t start or have trouble starting, and your car runs smoothly but the headlights dim while you’re running at low speeds or idling at a sop.


Most BMW 3-series electrical problems are caused by battery problems and wiring problems. So, if you’re having constant electrical problems, you should test and inspect your battery. Also, it is important to check the fuse as it is meant to protect electrical components onboard.

Nonetheless, fixing electrical problems on the BMW 3-Series is much easier than other BMW 3-Series problems.

What to know about BMW problems and issues.
Car weaknesses, problems, issues, errors, disadvantages and realiability.

Edwin Odipo

Why do you love writing about cars? Cars make our lives easy. You can visit your distant friend, relative or even rush to the grocery store a few miles from your home with a lot of ease. Imagine how life was before the invention of cars?? To me, cars are a blessing that made life more convenient.

Recent Posts