How to Reset the Service Light on a BMW E36

Written by david clair
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How to Reset the Service Light on a BMW E36
(Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

The BMW E36 uses an internal computer to monitor driving conditions and determine when routine service is required. When the system has detected that service is needed, a service light is illuminated on the instrument panel. After the required maintenance is performed, the service light needs to be reset so the computer can accurately track the interval until the next required service should take place.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Paper clip or metal wire

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  1. 1

    Open the bonnet.

  2. 2

    Unscrew the cap on the diagnostic data port, located directly in front of the engine toward the drivers side.

  3. 3

    Turn the ignition switch to the "II" position without starting the engine.

  4. 4

    Bend the paper clip into a "U" shape.

  5. 5

    Insert one end of the paper clip into the hole marked #7 in the data port. Insert the other end into the hole marked #19.

  6. 6

    Remove the paper clip after four seconds. The service light resets as the paper clip is removed.

  7. 7

    Replace the cap on the diagnostic data port. Close the bonnet. Turn off the ignition.

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