Yes it does. It was required by federal US law.
Try stopping at an AutoZone, Pepboyz, Advance Auto - most of these will
read the codes for you for free in the hope you'll buy some parts from
them. IIRC - on the Z3 the OBD-II port is on the right side of the
console under a plastic cover.
OK, I have an OBD2 code reader. But I've read all this about a round
plug in the engine compartment. The plug you jump across to reset
service intervals. So it has a both. It did not occur to me to look in
the passenger side.
OK, ran the code checker, and all I get is an 'E' which presumably means
Error. That typically means the CPU is fried, but I don't believe that's
the case here. Car runs fine. It just turned over 100K miles, so I bet
an O2 sensor is throwing the code.
I'll try to find a better code reader and see if I get a different
result. Anybody here local to DFW that has one?
Fort Worth TX
Rex B wrote:
Why would it NOT use the standard OBD II port? The location and layout of
the test port is an integral part of the OBD II spec.
The port is located along the left-bottom edge (USA destination vehicles) of
the dash board, generally in the area above your left knee while driving. It
can be exposed to view, or behind a cover that is CLEARLY marked as the
location of the OBD II Test Port (I'm pretty sure that BMW does not hide the
port behind a cover). When you find it, it will remind you of the LPT port
on the back of an old printer, except the OBD II port contains only 16 pins
whereas the printer port has 40, but the pin configuration is similar.
You can purchase an OBD II Scan Tool for something in the nieghborhood of
$75 (USD) that will tell you all that you should ever need to know, and
reset the codes after you extract them. You can spend less and get less
information -- skims the high points of the same information, gives less
detail -- or you can spend about double and get far more information than
most of us can fix at home. Alternatively, AutoZone parts stores will let
you use their scan tool free of charge. In Calif, they have to let you use
it, but in other states I've heard that they will actually crawl around
under the dash looking for the data port, and do all of the work for you.
(In CA., the auto mechanics make money by extracting codes, and they claimed
that AutoZone was taking food off the table. The court ruled that there is
no reason car owners can not extract the codes themselves using AutoZones
equipment, but AZ employees shall not pull codes on vehicles inside of CA.)
Not all OBD-II readers are capable of connecting to the BMW OBD-II on
several models. It's a known problem with the E39/M5 and the E46/M3. One
that does connect to both of these is the PC based AutoEnginuity
reader... the owner (Jay Horak) owns an E46/M3.
OP (that would be me) has a code reader. Someone else posted the port
location (thanks) but it only shows "E" meaning error.
I knew that
(A) some BMWs (and other manufacturers) had non-standard diagnostics,
despite federal laws specifying standardization.
(B) This car did not have a port in the traditional location
(c) There is an access port in the engine compartment for some
functions, access by a round male plug.
And by the way, my 1996 Ford pickup does not have OBD2, so there are
Thanks for the input.
The Roundel that came yesterday had a letter from a reader
regarding code reading. He specifically noted that the Peake
reader generally doesn't work and that he uses an AutoEnguity.
Don't know what you're using... Also note that the previous
Roundel had an article on code reading/decoding that might
The reader I'm using is the $40 unit sold by Harbor Freight.
This is the first time it's failed.
I have access to Equus scanners here, just need to find a demo unit.
If that doesn't work, I'll swing by Zone or somewhere and see if theirs
I'll see someone tomorrow that has promised me his Roundel back
issues, thanks for the reminder.
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