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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2001 BMW 325i. A few days ago, I noticed that the display board in the speedometer cluster where the odometer reading is remained lit after the vehicle was turned off and locked. An inspection later that night revealed that it was still lit several hours later. In addition, the headlight switch was also illuminated as well as the indicator on the automatic transmission (orange light at the "P"). The next morning I went to look into the issue only to find that the key fob no longer unlocked the vehicle, nor did it lock or operate the trunk. The central locking system operates from the button in the center console and from manually using the key in the door. I do not know if these issues are related, but the close proximity in time to one another suggests that they might be.

Thus far, I have checked the fuses for the central locking system (49, 52, and 60) and the instrument cluster fuses (10, 34, and 43), all of which are good. I have attempted to dim the display using the wheel on the headlight switch; however, this only seems to affect the instrument panel lights when the headlights are turned on. When the car is turned off, the display goes back to full intensity. I am unsure exactly where to start in terms of diagnosing this issue, therefore, any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

To ensure that I have accurately described the lights and displays in question, attached is a picture of the issue. Thanks in advance for any help in resolving this matter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Update: One Down, One to Go!

Concerned about the BMW sitting undriven for several days and the light being on 24/7, I removed fuse 43 as it seemed to disable the illumination in question for the time being to preserve the drain on the battery. I had the battery tested and confirmed that it is top operating condition (it was replaced just a year ago). I recently purchased a can of foaming evaporator cleaner to freshen up the A/C and while planning my attack on the evaporator, I can across some loose wires in the glove box that appear to have become detached from the light inside the glove box. Knowing that I must remove the glove box in order to access the evaporator through the final stage resistor housing, I did so and took the opportunity to repair the loose wires and clean the evaporator. Upon reassembling the car, I popped the fuses back in to see if by some random chance the problems had been resolved. To my surprise, one of the two issue did resolve itself after the repair; that is, the illumination issue with the odometer and headlight control switch is now resolved. Perhaps the wiring being out cause this issue, or perhaps the BMW gods have smiled upon me on this day—don’t really care so long as the problem is resolved. That’s one down, one more to go.

I also tested the key remote with an RF detector to confirm that the key is in fact sending a signal and that the battery is not dead. I have spent the better part of an hour trying to reprogram the key according to online sources with no success. I removed the rear C pillar cover to expose the antenna to inspect for any obvious solutions—nothing jumped out at me as being wrong, so still needing some assistance on this matter. To summarize, the key fob does not function to lock or unlock the vehicle, even from a short distance. The central locking system functions without issue through the use of the key manually in the door and through the button in the center console. The key appears to be sending an RF signal at 315 MHz and to have at least a sufficient charge of battery to register on the RF tester.

I am slightly outside of my area of expertise on this issue; if anyone has more extensive knowledge of the central locking system, the key remote function, or any other knowledge or advice that may help me to further diagnose and resolve this issue, your help is greatly appreciated.
 

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Go to www.bmwgm5.com and research the issue. May be a GM5 issue or maybe a door lock actuator problem????

You could also email Scott if he does not drop in and comment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Update: Second Problem Solved!

Go to www.bmwgm5.com and research the issue. May be a GM5 issue or maybe a door lock actuator problem????

You could also email Scott if he does not drop in and comment.
First and foremost, I apologize for the delay in posting; I recently graduated from law school and I have been studying for the bar ever since. This leaves me very little time to work on the BMW. I took a look at the link you provided shortly after you posted your reply and at that time I attempted multiple times to reprogram the key with no success. Today I finally made some time to pull the C pillar cover off and test the GM5 with my multimeter. The results indicated that the GM5 was receiving a signal from the key. I reread the instructions for reprogramming the key on the link you provided and gave it another chance. This time it worked on the first try! When I first attempted to reprogram the key, I did so by pressing the buttons very quickly; this time, following the comments on the link, I did so at a slower pace making sure not to exceed 10 seconds.

Thank you very much for your assistance in resolving this matter, I really appreciate your help. I can't believe I have been driving around and locking/unlocking my doors manually with the key for the past month when the solution was so simple. Thanks again!
 
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