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BMW Z3 Side Marker Lights

What to Do When Your BMW Z3 Side Marker Lights Malfunction

Designed to provide additional security at night and on days with poor visibility, your BMW Z3 side marker lights allows you to navigate roads safely. These lights act as warning lights to other motorists, making lane switching easier. Like any other automotive lights, the side markers experience breakdowns. Sometimes, it's difficult to pinpoint where the problem lies. Here are some of the things that you need to watch out for and what you need to do work out the problem:

Burnt-out bulbs and busted fuses

Just like the other lights in your vehicle, the side marker lights may not function if there's a burnt-out bulb inside the assembly. Replacing the bulbs is rather straightforward and takes only a few minutes to do. Once the fender and side marker light cover are out of the way, you can unscrew the bulb of its socket and install the new one. If that doesn't take care of the problem, look inside the fuse box and check for damaged fuses. The fuse box holds all the other lights fuses, so make sure that you are pulling out the right one.

Loose wirings

Loose wirings hamper the electricity flow from the battery to the side marker lights. Lightly tugging at the wires will give you an idea which ones need to be attached securely to the assembly. Turn on the marker lights to see if the process worked.

Lights not blinking

Your car's side marker lights are made to blink regularly. If the side markers don't blink at all (or if a bulb on one side blinks and the other one doesn't), that means there's a problem with either the switch or signal relay. Assuming that there are no burnt-out bulbs or defective fuses, you can replace the relay, which is located near the fuse panel. If the lights continue to blink, the problem could be due to a faulty switch. On some occasions, the side marker lights continue blinking even after the turn signal is not used. In this case, turning off the blinker flasher might help. If it doesn't, check on the fuse and replace it if necessary.

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  • Proper Care for BMW Z3 Side Marker Lights 27 February 2013

    The BMW Z3 side marker lights work in conjunction with the other automotive lights in ensuring a safe drive on the road. Although they are built tough, they are not resistant to wear and tear. Replacing the components within the side marker light assembly is no fun, so it's best to follow preventative measures to keep your turn signals in excellent condition.


    Clean the side marker light sockets.

    Bulb sockets are usually covered with anti-corrosion coating. Sometimes, the coating is scratched off during bulb installation, and the socket becomes exposed to oxidation. To prevent corrosion from eating up the socket, you need to clean the bulb housing regularly. Spraying the socket with an electrical contact cleaner or vinegar usually does the trick. However, if there's a significant amount of corrosion on the sockets, you need to soak the socket in a vinegar and water solution and wipe off the rust. Electrical contact grease helps in preventing corrosion from building up again. Additionally, you need to check for loose or bent contacts on the sockets. Replace the contacts if you see any damage to them.


    Replace old bulbs even if they're not yet burnt out.

    Side marker light bulbs rarely go off at the same time, so most car owners replace only that one defective bulb and retain the rest. To prevent the bulbs from burning out at the most inconvenient times (like when you're driving on the freeway at night), replace them all at the same time. Bulbs with nickel-plated bases work great as replacements, since they are less likely to corrode right away. Make sure to get the right bulb wattage for your side markers-bulbs with incompatible wattage do not draw a lot of current, so they usually go off rather easily.


    Add a ground wire to the inner fender.

    Bad grounding is very common to front side marker lights. This happens when the fender on which the lights are mounted is tarnished. Bad grounding dims the marker lights, which can be dangerous especially when you're driving at night. Adding a ground wire going to the inner fender eliminates the chances of bad grounding.