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Resources for the Repair and Maintenance of your BMW 540i

BMW 540i Models:

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BMW 540i Problems

Engine -- Verified

Engine oil leaks commonly develop from both valve cover gaskets, intake manifold, and PCV plate after about 60,000 miles.

Engine -- Verified

Leaks are known to develop in the cooling system. It is common to see more than one part recommended for repair/replacement due to overlapping labor and the use of many plastic parts in the system.

Heating & Air Conditioning -- Verified

The blower final stage fan resistor is known to fail. Symptoms are the heater fan speed varies regardless of the setting, the fan will not turn off when the car is switched off, or the fan will not switch on at all.

Suspension & Steering -- Verified

A fluid leak may develop from one or more power steering hose. When a leak is being repaired, it is not uncommon for multiple hoses to be replaced.

Suspension & Steering -- Verified

The front thrust rod bushings—also referred to as tension strut bushings—are known to fail occasionally. The oil-filled rubber mounts weaken and crack over time, causing a mushy road feel and shuddering in the steering wheel when going over bumps. These worn bushings should be replaced.

BMW 540i Recalls (Recent)

Drive Train, October 30, 1997

Summary: THE CRUISE CONTROL AND THROTTLE CABLES ARE ATTACHED TO THE SAME THROTTLE VALVE ACTUATING LEVER AT THE THROTTLE HOUSING. IT IS POSSIBLE THAT THE PLASTIC BUSHING ON EITHER CABLE COULD BREAK DUE TO ENVIRONMENTAL INFLUENCES COUPLED WITH VIBRATION. IF THE BUSHING BREAKS, THE OUTER CABLE HOUSING CAN SEPARATE FROM THE BUSHING. IN THIS CASE, DURING APPLICATION OF THE THROTTLE PEDAL WITHOUT CRUISE CONTROL BEING ENGAGED, THE OUTER TUBE COULD CATCH ON THE EDGE OF THE BROKEN BUSHING.

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Electrical & Lights, May 15, 2000

RepairPal Expert Overview:

The brake light switch may fail and stick in the "brake lamps on" or "brake lamps off" position. Inaccurate illumination of brake lights could lead to an accident. Dealers will inspect and replace the brake lamp switch with a new improved part.

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Engine, March 31, 1999

Summary: VEHICLE DESCRIPTION: PASSENGER VEHICLES. A MALFUNCTION OR FAILURE OF A COOLANT SYSTEM COMPONENT, SUCH AS A THERMOSTAT, WATER PUMP, OR FAN BELT, CAN RESULT IN SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASED COOLANT TEMPERATURE AND SYSTEM PRESSURE. IF THE INDICATIONS OF A CRITICAL OVERHEATING CONDITION IS NOT NOTICED BY THE DRIVER, IT IS POSSIBLE THAT DAMAGE TO, OR FAILURE OF, A COOLANT SYSTEM COMPONENT COULD OCCUR.

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Engine, September 28, 2001

Summary: VEHICLE DESCRIPTION: PASSENGER VEHICLES. THE ENGINE AUXILIARY/COOLING FAN OPERATION, INCLUDING VARIABLE SPEED, IS ELECTRONICALLY CONTROLLED. FAILURE OF THE FAN MOTOR CAN CAUSE THE ELECTRICAL CIRCUITRY OF THE FAN CONTROL UNIT TO OVERLOAD AND FAIL, CAUSING THE FAN TO STOP OPERATING.

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Engine

Summary: ON CERTAIN PASSENGER VEHICLES, THE ENGINE AUXILIARY/COOLING FAN OPERATION, INCLUDING VARIABLE SPEED, IS ELECTRONICALLY CONTROLLED. FAILURE OF THE FAN MOTOR CAN CAUSE THE ELECTRICAL CIRCUITRY OF THE FAN CONTROL UNIT TO OVERLOAD AND FAIL, CAUSING THE FAN TO STOP OPERATING.

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BMW 540i Questions and Answers

Dean540I, 1994 BMW 540i, Fallbrook, CA

power mirrors & telescoping steering& trip computer not working checked all fuses fuses good . any sugestions?

samlou02, 1994 BMW 540i, Worcester, MA

I am a big fan of the 740i and 540i of BMW,preferably 1994-2000 years. I am interested in a 1994 540i with 140,000 what should I look out for?

Visitor, 1994 BMW 540i, Hillsboro, OR

The back up lights dont work, and the turn signal doesnt work

Visitor, 1994 BMW 540i, Worcester, MA

I have a 1994 BMW 540i. its been sitting for a year or so. I has noticeable shaking and vibration when car at idle. I replaced the engine mounts.It reduced it some. Check engine light on and off cu...

Visitor, 1994 BMW 540i, Worcester, MA

car was running pretty crappy had a local dealer look at it found oils in engine coils and on plugs. Said I need to replace all eight coils and plugs. My question is, oil in coils means leaky gaske...

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BMW 540i Reviews

14 years later and still going strong. I wish BMW would make the interior better instead of using cheap plastic and low grade leather. Other than that is a verry good cAR.

My 540I runs like a charm,I had problems with the Body control computer( this controls all the lights) i had to replace some of the solid state relays in it ( in the passenger side kick panel),the shaking caused by the old control arms was gone as soon as i replaced then.i only have one problem left the check break fluid warning on the dash ( working on it ).I will tell u about that as soon as i am done

Good day,
I have a question on the alarmsystem of a 1998 540i,ijust cant get the alarm switched off i eventuly disconected the battery,checked the key battery,gone through the system by doing a visual check, no success at all please let me know if this is a comon occurance with alarm system i only have the car for about 6 months.
Please help
I live in South Africa hence no zip code.
Clive

WELL WHAT CAN I SAY. ITS THE BEST. IT IS VERY VERY FAST AND COMFORTABLE. IT IS THE ULTIMATE. IT IS GOOD AS A FAMILY CAR AND IT ALWAYS GETS THE JOB DONE.

Purchased it in July 2011, 74000 miles on it. the alternator, power steering pump, both serpentine belts and supply hose to the power steering pump were all bad. I opted to put on new rotors and brake pads. Changed to high speed tires (had 112 MPH on it) now has 168 MPH. Had both rear window corner screens dangling took them apart and fixed them. Lots of little things needed attention, trunk tool box hold up screw was broken, head light adjustment on both lights were broken (replaced with projectors). Last things to fix are the wheel well liners are shattered, brittle plastic or something. There is a little bit of shake when slowing from 70 in the front end acts like a warped rotor, but is intermittent. Now that it is all done driving it as compared to my Mercedes SLK is so much better, it out accelerates and out handles that car hands down. It is quiet, sure footed and comfortable. The sport seats make this a great long distance driver. Anyone with a modest budget and some mechanical knowledge would appreciate the simplicity of the car but know the upkeep of it is a little more involved than your typical chevy or ford. Bottom line, this is a drivers car, it is very fast, and handles extremely well, predictable handling makes even a novice feel like a accomplished driver. When I was a kid working on my first 55 chevy this is what I wanted it to work like. Awesome car......

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