Valve cover gasket leaks are common after 60,000 miles. Symptoms will include oil drips under the vehicle and burning oil smell from the engine compartment.
Resources for the Repair and Maintenance of your 2003 BMW 325i
2003 BMW 325i
2003 BMW 325i Problems
Failure of the front control arm bracket bushings—often referred to as thrust rod bushings—is moderately common. One symptom is a clunk or jolt felt in the steering when braking.
An engine coolant leak may develop from the expansion tank resulting in engine overheating. When a cooling system component fails the entire cooling system should be inspected. It is not uncommon to find additional component have failed or are leaking.
Overheating can cause severe engine damage. If the engine begins to overheat it is recommended to stop at the first available location and have your vehicle towed to a repair shop.
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.
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.
2003 BMW 325i Recalls (Recent)
RepairPal Expert Overview:
Airbags use a chemical reaction contained in an inflator module to create the pressure necessary to inflate the bags when deployment is required. These vehicles are being recalled because the front passenger airbag inflator may produce excessive internal pressure when deployed. As a result, the inflator module could rupture, causing metal fragments to strike vehicle occupants. Dealers will inspect and replace any defective passenger front airbag inflator modules found.
RepairPal Expert Overview:
The anti-pinching feature for the power windows may not function properly. A person may be pinched by a window being closed. Dealers will inspect the electronic control unit for the window lifting anti-pinching device, and replace it if necessary. The recall began May 27, 2003.
Summary: ON CERTAIN PASSENGER AND SPORT WAGON VEHICLES WITH AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSIONS, WITH THE ENGINE RUNNING, AND THE VEHICLE AT REST, AN INCREASE OF ENGINE IDLE SPEED (UP TO 1,300 RPM) MAY OCCUR.Learn more »
RepairPal Expert Overview:
High resistance in the electrical contacts may cause one or more of the rear lights to stop working. Intermittent light operation reduces the ability to warn other motorists of the driver's intentions, increasing the risk of a crash. Dealers will repair the affected vehicles as necessary to correct this concern.
2003 BMW 325i Questions and Answers
how much would the repair and labor be for a power steering pump?
No power to trunk release button under dash (driver's kick panel). All fuses in glovebox tested "good". Possible relay problem or different fuse location?
engine service light is on, what could the most basic problem be?
Over the last 8 months I've noticed that this vechicle has problems at idle, the engine once has shut down because it was idle'ing too low and wouldn't start for a about an hour or s...
2003 BMW 325i Reviews
I bought my 2003 325i in April 2008 with 40K. Today with 165K, I have had to replace: 3 water pumps, 2 radiators, 2 cooling expansion tanks, one window regulator, 2 front bushings, 1 cooling fan, 1 gas pump, 1 alternator, 2 brake pads, and 1 battery . The cost of maintenance including oil changes, and repairs is close to $0.08/mile. Otherwise the car is a joy to drive, and it's very economical 25 MPG average on regular gas (Do not use premium). My last repair was caused because the cooling fan exploded and damaged the radiator, expansion tank, water pump, etc, and cut the hood ($600.00 for patching and painting). When I got the car I discovered it was a Demo (never, never get one), and a CPO, which wasn't very useful. I took the car to the dealer 6 straight times to fix a coolant leak, they couldn't. After my CPO warranty expired I had to replace my first water pump ($850).
I absolutely LOVE this car! Sure, it has every problem common to this year model, but I was expecting it. Repairs [can] be expensive - even outrageous - if you are not comfortable with DIY. An example: power steering pump went out (known issue) and the dealer wanted $1070 to fix. I bought an improved pump that addressed the problem for $350 and installed it in about 2 hours. This fix was even easier than a GM. Yes, known problems with relatively inexpensive and quick fixes IF you are remotely competent with tools. I love everything about the car - performance, style and even making repairs. It truly is the "Ultimate driving machine."
I have a light vibration that starts around 25 MPH the dramatically increases as I accelerate. The car pulls out into a smoot run around 33 MPH then no more problems. Feel nothing as I decrease the speen so I know that its in the drive line but I took a look underneath the car and my God the driveshaft is located under the exhaust under a fire wall so before I tear into it I'd like to have a little conformation that the U-joint connecting the transmission from the driveshaft is the culprit. HELPPP
Purchased when three years old with 35K, now at 91K.
Fan belt pulleys
hydraulic pulley tensioner
Three rubber type engine hoses
Heater temp. senser
Reprogrammed door lock relay Sys.
Cooling expansion tank
expansion tank thermostat
Oil filter housing gasket
Two window regulators
Problems with inside/outside trim
Sorry, no more room.
Bought a new 2003 325i. The car was fun to drive but the quality of fit and finish was terrible. The car came with the "premium package" which included leather seats and some "wood" trim on the doors. The trim fell off frequently and had to be repaired. The floor mates lasted about a year. This car was recently re-called to fix a grounding problem in the electrical system that caused the tail lights to burn out frequently. They finally found the problem after 8 years. Also, this and other years of the 325i are involved in a class action suit that claims the body separates from the frame under normal use.
Finally, the dealers are the worst. The car comes with a 48K mile warranty and service included, but then the dealer tells you it doesn't need any. Oil changes at 15K miles and no tire rotation.. that's a joke.
I sold this car in Jan 2012 with 52K miles on it and got $9,000. It had a few bumps and bruises; but not many. Carmax turned it around for almost $15K in a week or so. God help the poor bastard who owns it now.
I bought a 2010 Acura TL with 17K miles and 3.5 year bumper to bumper warranty. We'll see how it goes.