1995 BMW 318

Electrical problem
1995 BMW 318 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Manual 225K miles

When I turn the ignition key to start the car, engine wont crank, won't turn over, no click, nothing. (Headlights/radio works fine). I will normally wait few minutes (15-20 minutes or so) and attempt to start the engine, the engine will start fine on first try & I'm able to drive the car anywhere with no problem. But when I start engine again, I get no crank, wont turn over, nothing. So I wait few minutes and try again and engine starts fine. Been doing this engine start routine for over a year but I'm afraid 1 of these days, engine wont start at all. Don't know where to begin to diagnose problem. Battery is fairly new, belts are new, clutch replaced and I perform regular routine maintenance. What do you think is causing starting problem?
July 15, 2010.

When the time comes that it will not start at all-Do below or do it now and identify if its fuel or spark problem

Then who knows could be the ignition switch all along

Get a helper disconnect a sparkplug wire or 2 and ground it to the engine atleast 3/16 away from ground-have helper crank engine over-do you have a snapping blue spark? If so-you have a fuel related problem, check the fuel pressure to rule out the fuel filter/fuel pump/pressure regulator and listen to the injector/s are they pulsing or hook up a noid light. No snapping blue spark continue to troubleshoot the ignition system-power input to the coil/coil packs, coil's resistances, cap and rotor, distributor pick-up coil, ignition control module, cam and crank sensors and computer Note: If it doesn't apply disregard it

Jul 15, 2010.
The E36 bodystyle is prone to having an internal failure in the steering lock.

#2 in this link

Dr. Hagerty
Jul 15, 2010.
Did the steering lock mechanism replacement fix this problem? My 95 318ti is doing the same thing except there is 'clicking' in the steering column and sometimes the steering wheel stays locked even after the car is started and rolling. It takes extreme force to release the steering wheel when this happens. Please advise.

Feb 21, 2011.
Open this in a new thread.

Dr. Hagerty
Feb 24, 2011.