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When the Engine Computer detects a problem, it sets a diagnostic fault code and turns the Check Engine light on to tell you. The place to start is by reading that code.
Cycle the ignition switch three times within five seconds from "off" to "run" without cranking the engine, leave it in "run", then watch the code numbers show up in the odometer display.
There's over a thousand potential fault codes but only those that could adversely affect emissions must turn the Check Engine light on. When the light is off the next time you start the engine, that means it's an intermittent problem and it has the second lowest level of severity. You still do not want to ignore it though because sometimes minor problems can become serious.
DID the top just stop? Have you lowered it before? If you have lowered it before then I am sure you are doing it correctly (parking brake set) Go to a place that is familiar with repair convertible tops. Like the dealer or a bmw specialist. they should charge a couple hours or less to tell you what is wrong. You can try a couple of things yourself but even for an experienced mechanic it is difficult. If they have a bmw code reader and not a generic one, it may tell you what sensor or motor is at fault. Sometimes the switch itself goes bad. Try pushing farther down on the switch or apply pressure at an angle on the switch. That will only work if there is a bad contact on the switch, and if it works you have a bad switch, but I doubt it. Go into your manual or online and it will give you information on how to lower your top manually. When you lower your top manually you disengage the motor (which is in the trunk). Then you could try to engage the motor and see if it will lift up and close. Sometimes this will re-time the top and that is all that is needed. Otherwise get it to the dealer. If your mechanic wants 1000 he does not want to fix it or does not know how. The motor may cost a 1000, but usually it would make noises or poop before going out and most repairs are sensor related. Hope that helps
security systems simply get between the key and the engine. The wire that is your engine run circuit is cut and and rerouted through the alarm module. Find this alarm module, find the two wires that have the same color code that are spliced into the two wires off the nodule. At this point, Do'nt cut them, jump them to each other and see if it will start. Alarm systems work on the time,pressure theory. In truth , the alarn wiring is stpid and simple. The secret is to put pressure on the thief by limiting the time he has to locate the wiring and bypass it by making alot of noise and flashing lights. Take your time and you can find and figure out which wires were cut and soliced into the module. If you have any questions, let me know.@ firstname.lastname@example.org.
Had the same problem with my motor it was the camshaft sensor and it's easy to fit yourself. Mine would start first time when cold then after driving even short distances wouldn't start. Hope this helps.