Question about 1996 BMW 318
I can only find 1995 BMW ignition lock cylinder. Can i replace the 1996 BMW 318i ignition lock cylinder with universal brand 1995 BMW 318i ignition lock cylinder
No you can not
Posted on Mar 12, 2009
There are two problems that would cause you to ask this question... either a spinning ignition assy or a locked ignition. Both become complicated due to the EWS (security system) if you try to replace the ignition. Either can be fixed with a drill and possibly a screw if you search on-line.
If it spins, a locator pin has broken or wore away. There are tutorials on youtube showing where to drill a small hole (after removing column plastic) and inserting a screw. If it is locked, the return spring has snapped and has wedged the tumbler. Once again a hole can be drilled and the remains of the spring removed.
Of course, do these at your own risk; they are not sanctioned by BMW or me! As for other options, replace the column (approx. $50-100 + labor) and get a new EWS module and have it programmed to key and ECU (about $75-150) at independent Euro shop. You can also replace ECU, EWS, and key/column from another car (either by yourself or at a shop), but be mindful to try and match ECU number from your car with donor to try and keep everything running correctly.
A final option would be to replace column only (if you have a non-EWS ecu - has maroon label). If not you can purchase a maroon label ecu (~$150) and delete the EWS; then you can just swap column.
This isn't for the novice. 95+ BMWs and most modern cars have security systems coded to keys which prevents the simple replacement of ignition tumblers.
Posted on Feb 13, 2015
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