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Discussion Starter #1
Ladies & Gents
After 4 plus yrs of reshelling my M5 with BMW finest parts, I have had what can only be described as the worst 6 months of running the car day to day.
Im not going to go into specifics on costs but my other better half says that if BMW parts came with air miles she could go from the UK to Hawaii twice a yr. She was not joking...Women dont Joke about things like this do they.

During my drive to the Nth London M5 meet in Hertford yesterday, The first EDC damper I replaced 4yrs ago has let go. That means I am about to replace my 5th damper in 4yrs & the second damper inside 6 months.
I am a fan of EDC but I also see a point where economy of scale has to apply to these cars at some point.
£50k plus new but now worth 5-6k Sterling for a 93 3.8 up to 12k for an 95 LE.

Now I know after seeing Andy E drive at the Ring, that I am not doing anything untoward to my M5 that other owners of this type of vehicle are not doing themselves. Indeed, most of my journeys are spent at an average of 80-100 kph commuting but like Andy & Many others, when the opportunity to have some fun shows itself, I drive pretty hard.

I would describe my M5 as meticulously serviced.

So thats 5 Dampers in 60 k miles..!
How many of you are encountering this kind of failure rate ?

Apologies but when these dampers go, its like flicking a switch in me that brings out the worst.

Is this another damper for Garcia to have a go at ?

Regards
Farrell
 

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AndyE said:
Mine had four new dampers in 2001 at 95,000 miles and they're still working (touch wood).

The car's now done 147,800 miles.
Hmmmm........
Mine must be one of a kind, Original EDC dampers at 190000kms (~120k miles), car driven(hard) all year round in temperatures varying from +30 degrees to -30 degrees celsius. Dampers are dry, never topped up the system(apart when the rear pressure regulator leaked) , I have changed the fluid and flushed the system of old crap, though.....

Sakke
 

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Farrell,

How are these dampers failing? The reason I ask is that some months ago I replaced the front suspension arms and track rod ends. Immediately after the car was a pig to steer which I attributed to poor wheel alignment. This has been corrected but the car still darts around on bumpy surfaces and suffers from what seams like skuttle shake when a mid corner bump is encountred.

After a bit of head scratching I've now concluded that the front left shock is not working as it should. It just can not control the verticle movements of the wheel at all. However it does appear to be much better with 'S' selected.

It's not leaking which makes me wonder if I've got a broken wire or faulty connection. I was going to search for some info to enable some serious weekend fault finding.

Are yours leaking or have they mechanically failed?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
ECM4 said:
Farrell,

How are these dampers failing? The reason I ask is that some months ago I replaced the front suspension arms and track rod ends. Immediately after the car was a pig to steer which I attributed to poor wheel alignment. This has been corrected but the car still darts around on bumpy surfaces and suffers from what seams like skuttle shake when a mid corner bump is encountred.

After a bit of head scratching I've now concluded that the front left shock is not working as it should. It just can not control the verticle movements of the wheel at all. However it does appear to be much better with 'S' selected.

It's not leaking which makes me wonder if I've got a broken wire or faulty connection. I was going to search for some info to enable some serious weekend fault finding.

Are yours leaking or have they mechanically failed?
Hello ECM4
The symptom you decribe is indeed that of a damper that is either about to leak or you my have a dodgy frt spring. The very fact that locking the solenoid shut in on S mode improves matters says that you are slowing the vertical rebound movement of the damper preventing the damper & spring from ocillating due to those components not being able damp out the movement which would be more noticeable when going over bumps in bends etc. You encounter increased feedback through the steering as a result & poor wheel control from whichever side is failing.

My dampers all eventually leaked with the tell tale dripping down the strut or a good soaking of the wheelhouse liner when one let go with some force.
First stop would be fault code check of the EDC to see if the wiring issue you hope it may be...! followed by the most likely which is a shot spring or EDC damper thinking about leaking.

I hope this makes some sense as im wrting it at 5.40 am before work.

Regards
Farrell
 

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farrell said:
Hello ECM4
The symptom you decribe is indeed that of a damper that is either about to leak or you my have a dodgy frt spring. The very fact that locking the solenoid shut in on S mode improves matters says that you are slowing the vertical rebound movement of the damper preventing the damper & spring from ocillating due to those components not being able damp out the movement which would be more noticeable when going over bumps in bends etc. You encounter increased feedback through the steering as a result & poor wheel control from whichever side is failing.

My dampers all eventually leaked with the tell tale dripping down the strut or a good soaking of the wheelhouse liner when one let go with some force.
First stop would be fault code check of the EDC to see if the wiring issue you hope it may be...! followed by the most likely which is a shot spring or EDC damper thinking about leaking.

I hope this makes some sense as im wrting it at 5.40 am before work.

Regards
Farrell
Farrell,

Just goes to show that 2 things don't pay.
1. crime
2. having the cleanest tail pipes i've ever seen!

Don't like the sound of your shock issues though mate. Especially as they aren't exactly cheap to replace!!

My car has just done 107K (66,000 miles) and is still on the original sus.
I'm hoping that this will last for a good while yet!!

It is having an Inspection 2 done today / tomorrow, so I'm on full alert for a phone call saying "we've found something wrong............"?

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #7
hertfordshire1 said:
Farrell,

Just goes to show that 2 things don't pay.
1. crime
2. having the cleanest tail pipes i've ever seen!

Don't like the sound of your shock issues though mate. Especially as they aren't exactly cheap to replace!!

My car has just done 107K (66,000 miles) and is still on the original sus.
I'm hoping that this will last for a good while yet!!

It is having an Inspection 2 done today / tomorrow, so I'm on full alert for a phone call saying "we've found something wrong............"?

Steve
Wotcha Steve
Hows things going.
yes, the polished tail pipes are very shiny but thats just the cosmetic side effect !. Polishing the surface will reduce surface friction so drag is reduced..LOL :hihi:

I dont want to jinx you but if you have not had dampers yet, it is an unavoidable future expense. Im on my 5th damper in 70k miles.
A few yrs ago I looked at a couple of M5s at ML. The common theme was that both cars had knackered EDC dampers on at least 2 corners of the car.
Mileage was 66k & 83k respecitvely so it would appear that you may be in the zone of failure between 60 & 95k.
2 dampers had been replaced in the history on my car before I got it !

EDC is great & its flexibility is a 3.8s only real improvement over a 3.6 IMHO.
It is also the most annoying aspect of the car when it plays up
I could live with the firmness of a conventional Hartge suspension kit but I have only ever had individual dampers fail. EDC does not require replacement of units in axle pairs unlike the conventional wisdom of sealed gas / oil dampers.
However, had I been put in position where a pair had failed, I think I would have seriously considered my position.

Thats my 2 pence for what its worth.

Farrell
 

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farrell said:
Wotcha Steve
Hows things going.
yes, the polished tail pipes are very shiny but thats just the cosmetic side effect !. Polishing the surface will reduce surface friction so drag is reduced..LOL :hihi:

I dont want to jinx you but if you have not had dampers yet, it is an unavoidable future expense. Im on my 5th damper in 70k miles.
A few yrs ago I looked at a couple of M5s at ML. The common theme was that both cars had knackered EDC dampers on at least 2 corners of the car.
Mileage was 66k & 83k respecitvely so it would appear that you may be in the zone of failure between 60 & 95k.
2 dampers had been replaced in the history on my car before I got it !

EDC is great & its flexibility is a 3.8s only real improvement over a 3.6 IMHO.
It is also the most annoying aspect of the car when it plays up
I could live with the firmness of a conventional Hartge suspension kit but I have only ever had individual dampers fail. EDC does not require replacement of units in axle pairs unlike the conventional wisdom of sealed gas / oil dampers.
However, had I been put in position where a pair had failed, I think I would have seriously considered my position.

Thats my 2 pence for what its worth.

Farrell
If my dampers pack up with in the next month, it WILL be down to you jinxing me and therefore, I'll be expecting you to foot the bill!

On a seperate note - does your car have servotronc?
if so, how do you find it?

Steve
 

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My car had the whole lot replaced by the previous owner but that was unfortunately 60,000 miles ago!!

We have so many problems with EDC that its surprising there isn't more information available. What we need is some quality info so we can carry out some quality fault finding. We don't want to be replacing shocks uneccessarily! The sort of thing I had in mind.......

- A good technical description of how its supposed to work.
- A description of the components, how they are connected and where they are located (a block diagram?)
- A wiring diagram with harness and plug details to enable the wires to be buzzed thru with a circuit tester.
- Can the system detect faults?
- What are the fault codes and how do we read them?
- How to recongnise known faults.

Some of this is available here but its disjointed and sometimes contradictory :crying:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
hertfordshire1 said:
If my dampers pack up with in the next month, it WILL be down to you jinxing me and therefore, I'll be expecting you to foot the bill!

On a seperate note - does your car have servotronc?
if so, how do you find it?

Steve
Steve
I trust your dampers will hopefully serve you a couple of yrs longer...(Cant afford a bill for yours & mine !)
AndyE reported full replacement @ 100k. I think this my be toward the upper limit though though DrSakke reports 120k. If he had the car from new & can confirm no change of dampers, then this would appear to be the extreme end of the failure curve not represented by most owners.

It would be interesting for all the 3.8 owners to submit their EDC failures to the board indicating at what mileage the changes occured to better understand the average lifespan.

As for my car, yes it has Servotronic. Its not an issue. When an issue occurs with the system, it appears to default to its lightest assistance setting. Not much to comment on apart from that.

Cheers
Farrell
 

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Hi ECM4

I think most of the info is located at this thread with pictures and various attachments and how the dampers work as described by Garcia : http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=47942

and also more pictures here : http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=51338

and the .pdf for how the EDC111 works is attached to this thread: http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=48713

May need compiling by someone but there is loads of info to be found?




ECM4 said:
My car had the whole lot replaced by the previous owner but that was unfortunately 60,000 miles ago!!

We have so many problems with EDC that its surprising there isn't more information available. What we need is some quality info so we can carry out some quality fault finding. We don't want to be replacing shocks uneccessarily! The sort of thing I had in mind.......

- A good technical description of how its supposed to work.
- A description of the components, how they are connected and where they are located (a block diagram?)
- A wiring diagram with harness and plug details to enable the wires to be buzzed thru with a circuit tester.
- Can the system detect faults?
- What are the fault codes and how do we read them?
- How to recongnise known faults.

Some of this is available here but its disjointed and sometimes contradictory :crying:
 

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Farrell / other's in need of dampers, I have been given the following prices from my local BMW parts department.
EDC - £392 + VAT, NonEDC / 3.6 - £280 + VAT.
The parts guy said he could go to about 22.5% discount which works out at around 300 / 200 a piece. Please dont bother trying to get me to order them unless you are in Scotland, but the information may be of use when buying from your local dealership.
I still don't understand why fitting 3.6 dampers instead of EDC does not seem to be considered a reasonble cost saving exercise for 3.8 owners in need of new dampers.
cheers,
Phil.
 

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Phlem5 said:
I still don't understand why fitting 3.6 dampers instead of EDC does not seem to be considered a reasonble cost saving exercise for 3.8 owners in need of new dampers.
cheers,
Phil.


I think because you would be basically taking a feature off the 3.8 car that does offer a best of both worlds on road and track. Also remember this will have cost quite serious money for BMW to develop considering the small number of cars fitted with the system. Hence why they probably reasoned thay they should renew the licence with Boge.

ON a personal note, I think the system is fantastic. Besides, having a switch in front of me and a load of redunant pipe work and electrical cabling in the car would really bother me.

Best

M5 Powered
 

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M5p, appreciate the response, I can understand why EDC is worth keeping. My point is in respect of an alternative to EDC, if as has been suggested, current values
of e34's (i.e. 5-7k) don't support spending circa 2k on replacing EDC dampers. My suggestion is as an alternative to Hartge / Bilstein etc, as well as EDC.
cheers,
Phil.
 

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yewcorner said:
Hi ECM4

I think most of the info is located at this thread with pictures and various attachments and how the dampers work as described by Garcia : http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=47942

and also more pictures here : http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=51338

and the .pdf for how the EDC111 works is attached to this thread: http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=48713

May need compiling by someone but there is loads of info to be found?
Thanks for that....I'll print this stuff out and have a good look at it....
 

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I think the main reason in keeping EDC is not only the fact that you have a choice between 2 settings for suspension but also the fact that it is OE to the car and came on the from the factory.

I looked into replacing my EDC when I had a fault and thought the worse! Lucky for me it turned out to just need a reset and recoding, after the fault coming up on the Rolling Road. I did ask for the work sheet etc that they used and printed out and was given the copy of it.

When should you replace springs aswell then??

Should have have a sticky for people to post when they have replaced EDC parts and the mileage of the car?
 

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Holy crap....this systems more complex than I imagined!!

There's some basic facts that you need to know if you're running a car with EDC:

1) The dampers have three settings:
- Firm (no solenoids active)
- Soft (soft solenoid active)
- Medium (Medium solenoid active)
2) With P selected the system selects either of the above depending on sensor data.
3) With S selected soft is locked out and a more aggresive 'map' used to select medium or firm.
4) The system can only vary settings by axle (not side to side).

So basically solenoids need to be activated to soften the ride. If the suspensions hard then its likely some part of the system is not working. If its soft then the shocks are manfunctioning internally.

My front suspensions soft therefore by simple deduction the shocks are knackered!! :crying:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
ECM4 said:
Holy crap....this systems more complex than I imagined!!

There's some basic facts that you need to know if you're running a car with EDC:

1) The dampers have three settings:
- Firm (no solenoids active)
- Soft (soft solenoid active)
- Medium (Medium solenoid active)
2) With P selected the system selects either of the above depending on sensor data.
3) With S selected soft is locked out and a more aggresive 'map' used to select medium or firm.
4) The system can only vary settings by axle (not side to side).

So basically solenoids need to be activated to soften the ride. If the suspensions hard then its likely some part of the system is not working. If its soft then the shocks are manfunctioning internally.

My front suspensions soft therefore by simple deduction the shocks are knackered!! :crying:
ECM4
EDC 111 has a few complexities but when you look & understand what interacts with what, it all makes sense. Its current model installation is an order of magnitude more complex.
Welcome to the Joys of 3.8 ownership..

Best of luck.
Farrell
 

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It could need resetting?

This can be done by disconnecting the (-) negative terminal of the battery and then reconnecting about an hour later. This restores the default setting for both the cars and EDC cpu.

I did it a number of times when I had a rear ABS sensor failure which affected the EDC and a 'don't go faster than 110mph' sign came up on the check control. (or words to that effect!)




ECM4 said:
Holy crap....this systems more complex than I imagined!!

There's some basic facts that you need to know if you're running a car with EDC:

1) The dampers have three settings:
- Firm (no solenoids active)
- Soft (soft solenoid active)
- Medium (Medium solenoid active)
2) With P selected the system selects either of the above depending on sensor data.
3) With S selected soft is locked out and a more aggresive 'map' used to select medium or firm.
4) The system can only vary settings by axle (not side to side).

So basically solenoids need to be activated to soften the ride. If the suspensions hard then its likely some part of the system is not working. If its soft then the shocks are manfunctioning internally.

My front suspensions soft therefore by simple deduction the shocks are knackered!! :crying:
 

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Phlem5 said:
Farrell / other's in need of dampers, I have been given the following prices from my local BMW parts department.
EDC - £392 + VAT, NonEDC / 3.6 - £280 + VAT.
The parts guy said he could go to about 22.5% discount which works out at around 300 / 200 a piece. Please dont bother trying to get me to order them unless you are in Scotland, but the information may be of use when buying from your local dealership.
I still don't understand why fitting 3.6 dampers instead of EDC does not seem to be considered a reasonble cost saving exercise for 3.8 owners in need of new dampers.
cheers,
Phil.
I've enquired through my local specialist. He's been quoted (by BMW Aberdeen) £493 less his 10% dicount (very generious!) plus VAT which comes out at £521. BMW have 6 in the UK all ex Bracknall.

Phlem5, Who is this 'parts guy'. I need to buy him gifts and alchol........
 
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