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Thread: Z8 Gremlins?

  1. #1
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    Question Z8 Gremlins?

    Yesterday my 2002 Z8 with 7,800 miles had a nervous breakdown.
    1-None of the dash indicators worked (ie. head lights, directionals) but the actual function worked.
    2- The navigator could not find it's way home.
    3- It took about 5 tries to start the car (no cranking sound, just silence).
    4- The key remote would not work.
    5- I couldn't turn the radio off.

    Today the car is fine; everything works.
    If it's an electrical problem that's intermitant, I'm really worried.

    Has anyone else experienced this?

    I Squared

  2. #2
    No, thats the first time I heard of this, but my first question would be when did you last replace the battery?

    My SL500 daily driver has a electrical fit every other day, I just turn it off, take out the key and restart it, and it works fine?! I'm pretty sure its a software issue which is why I keep driving it, because when it isn't happening the car works perfectly.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

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    Question Gremlins

    It's the original battery. Also the car was left in the rain for 3 days.

    I Squared

  4. #4
    The battery should go for sure, these cars are very sensitive to the state/age of the batteries, four years is the max you should really expect them to last. If you get a new one that will likely fix everything, the rain really won't hurt the car, it is designed for German weather!
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

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    Question Gremlins

    Thanks Macfly,
    The battery is being changed as we speak. The dealer is also putting the car through a diagnostic to see if any codes were triggered.

    I Squared

  6. #6
    Z8 Addict Scott Pettit's Avatar
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    Rain should not be an issue. Although your radio issue is interesting.

    Battery should probably be replaced.

    The BMW nav system data base is a joke. I suggest that you give it up and buy a Magellan 4300 series GPS.
    Scott Pettit
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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    In addition to the electronics that you mention, the S62 has a highly sensitive electrical system. A battery not at peak condition can cause the engine to go into cripple mode.

    Good move on replacing the battery. Even if it's not the problem, it's time.
    thegunguy

  8. #8
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    I still have the original battery in my car (october 2001) but state that the car is and has been always on the battery trickler

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    Hi Macfly,

    As of now the change in the battery seems to have corrected the problem. At first it was a little sluggish; it it seems that the car had to re-learn the codes.

    Thanks for the input.

    I Squared

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    My car was on a trickle chrger when ever it was not used. Eventually, it still goes. Based on my aggravation; change yours.

    I Squared

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    What is an S62 ?

    I Squared

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    BMW's designation for the engine in the Z8 (E52)

  13. #13
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I Squared View Post
    My car was on a trickle chrger when ever it was not used. Eventually, it still goes. Based on my aggravation; change yours.

    I Squared
    The BMW supplied Deltran charger is a very basic charger. It's better than nothing, but it's really designed to be a true battery maintainer.
    thegunguy

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    S62 vs E52

    E52 = Z8 automobile platform
    S62 = Motor/engine in the Z8 automobile (and M5)

  15. #15
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    B52 = Game Over''

    BTW, the 'E' model codes are abbreviated from 'entwicklungscode' (development code). However, they recently ran out of their two digit numbering plan (not sure whey the didn't move to three digit) and have since moved on to 'F' codes.

    BMW uses M, S, and N to denote engine models. I believe they're for Motor, Sport, and Not-sure.

    The S62B50 (it's full designation) was derived (dimensionally and not much else) from the bullet proof Alusil M62 engine that was a mainstay for BMW and several other companies in the late 90s through at least 2005 when Land Rover dropped it from the Range Rover in favor of a new 4.4L engine form its Ford stable-mate, Jaguar. Interestingly, the 2003 to 2005 Range Rovers are actually building a cult following in the used market due to the long-lasting reliability of the M62 drivetrain. The M62 was replaced by the N62 that is still used in several BMW models today, but it's days are numbered.

    Our S62 engines are really something to behold in terms of technology, performance, and reliability. BMW and M really worked some magic to bring the latest in technology (even over 10 years later) to a high-performing power-plant that will run for years. It's applications are quite impressive from the godly Ascari to the champion Dinan racers. Ultimately, changing emission standards killed S62 production, but it truely is a gem of an engine that is part of the reason why the Z8 will be one of the few modern cars that won't be forgotten in twenty years.
    thegunguy

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    What is the best trickle charger for our cars?

    Looking for the best trickle charger as my z stays in a heated garage for the winter months. Thanks guys.

  17. #17
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I like the Accumate Pro.
    thegunguy

  18. #18
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    My trickle charger is a BMW. Think I paid 65 or so. Tending the original battery which seems strong still.

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    Z8 Gremlins

    I am replying to my own thread.
    My electrical problem was found. It wasn't a bad battery, it was a loose wire behind the radio.

    HOWEVER; when I got in the car, the navigator, telephone, emergency call categories in the dash display screen were missing. Further, the disclaimer you have to accept to access the screen was missing.

    At least this created an error code so the deasler located the problem immediately. The "module" which operates the Navigator is bad, or burned out. They are sending for the part in Germany, which will take a few weeks. It costs $2,700 US; but the dealer is picking up the cost. (My guess is that somehow they fried the Navigator when they fixed the short.)

    So the drama continues. When I moved the passenger seat forward to access the Navigator disc, I noticed that the car floor was wet. Can this water be getting to the Navigator and shorting it out?

    About 2 years ago, under warranty, the cloth top was replaced (broken cable was tearing the top). Was this installed wrong and causing the leak?

    Until recently the car was never in the rain. That's when all the gremlins started.

    Is this car sending me a message? The car has 7,800 miles on it. In the last 2 months, as I began to use it consistantly, I have replaced the battery, fixed the AC, the Heater, and coped with the electrical short. As I said the top was replaced. now there is a leak and a bad navigator module. This car lives at the dealer. Is this beyond caring for a special car?

    I Squared

  20. #20
    If the car is sending you a message it is most likely "I don't like the rain!".

    The source of the water in the footwell is of great concern, as will lead to countless problems down the line. Replacing the soft top strings should not lead to that. There are two drainage channels that help dispel the water under the rear part of top that could be blocked, or rubber seals that have failed around the top, doors or even windscreen. Where ever it is coming from stopping it is vital, and once the leak is found and sealed you should be back to normal.

    If you are planning to use the car through the winter I'd pop the hardtop on, and if you decide to sell it I'd say try to get through to the spring, soft tops never sell well in winter.
    Andrew Macpherson

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    Gremlins

    Thanks MacFly!

    When and If the dealer fixes the Navigator, and that's the last of its problems; the car will be shipped to Palm Beach. I don't want to bring it there and then have to find a new dealer to fix problems.

    Where are the drains? I don't want to poke around near the soft top.
    The seals look OK to me. I think the water is running getting in somewher behind the right passenger side and running behind the panel where the navigator is. Only the floor is wet.

    I Squared

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    MacFly:
    The entire top was replaced, not just the strings.

    Also, once I fall back in love with this car, do you recommend installing the kit that reinforces the shock towers to avoid the twisting problem. I sometimes drive the car hard; but not abusively?

    I Squared

    I Squared.

  23. #23
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Is the wet floor in the passenger footwell? I saw you had heater/AC work, but there is a not very common but known issue that causes a leak in the passenger foot well. Was this the issue that you had fixed? If so, perhaps it wasn't completed.

    The "kit" is a must, regardless of driving style.
    thegunguy

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    Gremlins

    The leak is on the floor behind the passenger seat.
    As I mentioned, the cloth top was replaced. There is a gasket that runs along the base of the top where it meets the body. Visually it looks OK; but cloth is flexible so how tight can that seal be.

    Any clues to the cause of the leak?

    I Squared

  25. #25
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Since the top was replaced, I lean towards a bad seal too. Something wasn't done "just right" when the top was reinstalled. Was this the dealer's first top replacement?

    It does seem odd that only the floor is wet. The pod where the nav unit is held is easy to remove. Perhaps you can take it out and get a better view on the direction of the source of the leak.
    thegunguy

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    Gremlins

    BMW NA covered me for the top. The dealer sent the car out to be done.
    When the weather clears in PA I may take the pod out.
    Where are the drains?

    I may go back to the dealer and complain.

    Thanks,
    I Squared

  27. #27
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Okay, now I'm definitely betting on bad top installation.
    thegunguy

  28. #28
    Z8 Addict Scott Pettit's Avatar
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    Here are some tests:

    First, dry out the carpet by placing a space heater in your car with the window cracked and let it run till dry. I did this after my Blazer flooded and it worked great.

    With the rag top up and you in the car, have someone run a hose over the top and start looking for leaks. The top needs to get saturated as the leak may be through the fabric. By the way, you are treating your top every other washing with water repellant-right?

    If no leaks, repeat the procedure but hose the area around the trunk lid and up in the rear wheel wells. If no leaks do the same around the doors.

    Do you get where I am headed with this?

    If you notice moisture along any of your seals, I suggest that you first use Gummiphledge (not sure on the spelling). It applies like liquid shoe polish and works miracles on the rubber seals.

    Finally, get under the car and make sure that any panel seams, such as the floor pan, have not separated. Do the same inside the trunk by pulling up the liner and looking for moisture and cracks.
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  29. #29
    The drain is something I have never actually seen, but I always see the water drain away from between the top and the body very quickly when washing the car, so there must be one in there somewhere, and the most logical place is the lowest point. I'd suggest half opening the top, and pouring a jug of water into the seal, and watch where it comes out.

    This is where I think it is, but you can't actually see it from the inside, I tried sticking the camera inside the top liner and pointing it forward towards the drivers door to where it should be.
     
    Andrew Macpherson

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  30. #30
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Are you certain there's a drain or does it just dump into the door seam? I've noticed a lot of water channel to the door in washes.

    Perhaps take up the rear cover behind the roll hoops. It pops out fairly easily - that's where the rear shocks live.
    thegunguy

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    Thanks for the advice and diagrams. I am going to pursue this before I go back to the dealer.

    I Squared

  32. #32
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    How did it go?

    What caused the leakage?

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    Sorry for trhe delay.
    It is the seal on the right passenger side. I am in Florida until May.
    I left the car in PA stored. I will deal with it in the spring.

    ISquared

  34. #34
    Team Z8 RRZ8's Avatar
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    Have a nice stay in Florida, keep us informed!