BMW E28 Fuse Box

This article discusses the fuse box for the E28.

A client with a 1998 BMW E28 M5 contacted me, looking for a fuse box. His car`s fuse box had melted in one or more areas, and he figured it’d be prudent to replace it.

I was sure that I didn’t have a unit in stock specific to the M5, so my tech looked into this in more detail. The best available information she found showed that the part number is 6113 1369596 and that all E28 variants use this same part number.

Interestingly enough, the 1981-1982 BMW E23 7-series also uses this same part number — but only those model years.

Allegedly, the accessory fan and A/C fuses are the ones that have problems with melting, and a box with no melting is rare.


BMW E28 and E34 5-Series M20 Engine Drive Belt Preventative Maintenance Interval

This article discusses the ideal interval between drive belt replacements for the E28 and E34 with the M20 engine. I’m focused here on the belt that drives the alternator and water pump, not the timing belt. We might as well include the belts for the air conditioning compressor and power steering pump, respectively.

Obviously, it’s a good idea to replace the drive belts regularly. As to what “regularly” means: when I started to write this article, I didn’t know a good answer to that question. I still don’t, though I read someone official-sounding suggesting that a good interval is anywhere from 40K to 70K. That seems reasonable to me. BMW probably has an official number too, but that no doubt is highly conservative, and it also presumes original BMW equipment, which most people probably don’t use on a 30-year old car.

I’ve had a drive belt fail on my 1987 BMW, and it was disconcerting to see the alternator warning light come on and then to see the temperature gauge slowly climbing while my conscience was whispering: “you DO know this engine has an aluminum head, and you know what happens to these when they overheat, yes?”

This sort situation is best avoided. I replace the timing belt on my M20-engined cars every 60K miles. Replacing the drive belts then too . . . that’s my new, improved plan.