I have a 2006 bmw 330i about 6 months ago the sound system went from making little noise to non. I read forums saying it was probably a bad amplifier. I replaced the amp and had it programmed by the bmw dealership which is about an 8 hour drive from my hometown. They thought that would fix the no noise problem but it did not. They said they would charge me another 2 hours worth of work at the rate of 120 and I said no thanks. Anyway long story short the radio still does not work. The stereo head unit displays all the right pictures and all the buttons work, but not the sound. Also the steering wheel buttons work as well. So far I have spent a great deal of money on this issue only to come up with no answers. Could it be the radio head unit is bad somehow even though everything seems to be working besides the sound? Is it a blown fuse although I have checked a lot of them? I do not know what to do. Should I just spend more money and buy a used head unit? Would I have to bring to the dealership to get it programmed for another 260 dollars? I am very frustrated and need any and all suggestions and help. Please and thank you.
BMW is one of the top three manufacturers in the world for customer-unfriendly business practices, along with General Motors and Volkswagen. They have designed in numerous things to cost you money after the sale. It is one of the reasons GM was hurting. There were too many current owners who said, "never again" when buying their next new car.
In the case of radios, there is no legitimate reason that radios and amplifiers have to programmed to work, but designing them that way means more money for the dealers. They also will not allow us to buy radio service manuals so you're stuck with the dealer and their grossly over-priced repair centers. In the case of BMW, they will not release paint codes to independent body shops, (they have to buy their paint from the dealers), and they won't even release service information to the general public. None of those practices have the customers' best interest in mind.
Now many manufacturers are building the Body Computers into the radios so you can't even replace them with an aftermarket radio. Talk about childish and greedy. I'll stick with my '88 minivan and will surely never buy a car designed purposely with those "got'chas".
As for your problem, the first repair did not solve the problem so the ethical thing to do is remove the new part and re-diagnose the problem correctly. The dealer is the last resort for getting things fixed, and they should not be guessing at the cause. Tell them you want the problem fixed correctly, and if they can't you'll be happy to share that with friends and coworkers. You can be sure you aren't the first customer to be treated this way. We hold mechanics up to higher standards than doctors, but in this case they didn't deliver.
You have to wonder too why they are eight hours away. Could it be there are no takers for their products so no one wants to sell them? I used to be dismayed when I heard local people tell me they had to drive 90 miles to the closest dealership for their car brand, and I had to wonder why they would buy a car they knew would require a road trip so often.