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      07-25-2019, 12:03 AM   #1
RichardSwe
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GPS position error

I've searched but not found a good description of the problem or a fix.

My 435i navigation has an intermittent problem showing the car position on the navigation map. About 50% of the time it shows the car just off the road I am on. For instance, today on an interstate it kept showing the car on access roads and telling me "turn right in 500 feet", etc.

I'm thinking this may be a connection problem or an antenna problem. I've seen easy replacements for the GPS antenna. Perhaps that's an easy trial fix.

I found the Navigation special menu, with
** GPS status (several data fields. All look good, such as correct GPS location long/lat and 'GPS 3D lock")
** GPS tracking (empty, i.e. no content shown)
** GPS System / receiver SW (empty) and Receiver SW date: (empty)
Looks like no help and nothing to adjust anyway.

Any guidance? Good links for troubleshooting?
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      07-25-2019, 08:33 PM   #2
RichardSwe
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bump
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      07-26-2019, 01:24 AM   #3
percychow
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Hey RichardSwe!

Had THE same issue with my 2015 435i 2 months ago. Took it to the dealer, they replaced the ENTIRE audio receiver in the dash. And guess what, the issue still persisted. Given that experience, I didn't trust them anymore.

If you want to diagnose the issue yourself, get a cheap GPS antenna off ebay. Mine was $15 shipped from Germany for the OEM BMW unit.

I undid the receiver from the dashboard (search on Youtube on how to do that).
Unplug the GPS connector (it's blue) and plug in your ebay one. If it corrects itself, you know you have either a bad antenna or bad cable from the receiver to the antenna.

FYI in my case, the dealer tested the shark fin (off the connector in the trunk) and just *assumed* the head unit was bad. Turns out... there's ONE MORE GPS connection. The cable from the head unit runs to the trunk and then connects to the GPS on the roof. That was what was wrong with my 435i.

OK so my fix?

I wasn't about to pull the entire wiring from dash to trunk and just plain don't trust the dealer to do that either (I've had loose parts and wrong diagnosis too many times now).

I unplugged the stock connecter and used the EBAY one. I then routed the ebay antenna under the dash to just behind the speedo - there's a perfect space to double-stick tape the antenna back there. Total process for removing the headunit, installing the ebay GPS and putting it all back-together, just over an hour.

Been running this hack set-up for 2 months now. Pretty stoked about the fix. The dash comes apart so easily, it's hard to justify wiring it back into the stock system.
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      07-28-2019, 10:17 AM   #4
JimBeam
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I would definitely try a new antenna before anything else. Sensible money would be on that.
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      08-14-2019, 12:10 PM   #5
RichardSwe
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I bought a GPS antenna off eBay. Will install today. Sure sounds like the easy fix. I don't want to try to track down wiring and connections.

Thanks -- I'll report back.
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      08-16-2019, 11:10 AM   #6
RichardSwe
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OK -- one question --

Before I start, I'm trying to determine where I will plug in the GPS antenna. I thought I had seen a DIY or a YouTube video about this that was specific to the F30 but now I can't find anything. I've found some generic videos which show the antenna being plugged into a head unit.

So -- does the generic GPS antenna plug into the head unit? Into the display? Or (hope not) into a unit in the rear. I figure some processing of the signal is needed, so I'm guessing it's either the head unit or a rear connection.

Sure would appreciate some help. Thanks.
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      08-16-2019, 08:46 PM   #7
RichardSwe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by percychow View Post
Hey RichardSwe!

Had THE same issue with my 2015 435i 2 months ago. ...

If you want to diagnose the issue yourself, get a cheap GPS antenna off ebay. Mine was $15 shipped from Germany for the OEM BMW unit.

I undid the receiver from the dashboard (search on Youtube on how to do that).

Unplug the GPS connector (it's blue) and plug in your ebay one. If it corrects itself, you know you have either a bad antenna or bad cable from the receiver to the antenna....

I unplugged the stock connecter and used the EBAY one. I then routed the ebay antenna under the dash to just behind the speedo - there's a perfect space to double-stick tape the antenna back there. Total process for removing the headunit, installing the ebay GPS and putting it all back-together, just over an hour.

Been running this hack set-up for 2 months now. Pretty stoked about the fix. The dash comes apart so easily, it's hard to justify wiring it back into the stock system.
I was looking at this thread again, searching for "where to plug in the GPS" (per my follow up post) and I saw that percychow had already laid it out for me. Thanks --

Tomorrow! As soon as the weather cools off a bit so I can work in the garage.

Thanks!
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      08-17-2019, 08:17 PM   #8
RichardSwe
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Well... no luck...no joy...nada...zilch.

I installed the new antenna and tested it by driving a bit with the GPS. The car continues to jump "off track", like the map shows it jumping from a freeway to a nearby road, then soon thereafter it jumps back. While it does this it keeps changing its verbal commands, like "when possible, make a legal U-turn". Completely useless.

In my 2014 335i I used the GPS all the time. Now I've got nothing. I'll be using my phone's maps I guess.


Installation notes:
The new antenna plug is blue. It replaces the blue plug in the head unit, which is in the lower left quadrant as you look at the front of the head unit. Installation is pretty easy. Taking out the dash trim and the head unit is pretty easy.

I had a rather hard time finding a place to put the antenna. In my car it's quite congested behind the dash (Harmon Kardon speakers and other normal things). I found a brace to the right of the head unit that looked like a fair spot, with a clear line of sight to the sky. It was still a very tight fit to get my hand in to install the antenna.

When the system didn't work in my test, I remounted the antenna temporarily on the dash. the GPS still did not work properly. It is useless.

I have now uninstalled the "new" antenna and gone back to the stock antenna. (No change in the problem.)

So at this point I'm stymied. Maybe it's the head unit. I'm grasping at straws here, looking for possible explanations*.

I'll research alternatives. The prior owner and I talk quite a bit. He suggested possibly installing gear to be able to use Apple CarPlay which he likes a lot. He thinks this would require a new screen and some plug in to the head unit. May be expensive to try.

I'd welcome ideas.

*Maybe it's some unexpected interference from a Bimmertech backup camera that was installed some time ago. That plugs into the head unit with a custom harness. I don't think that's it, but perhaps? The backup camera works well.
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      08-18-2019, 02:24 PM   #9
RichardSwe
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With some limited searching I am thinking the problem is in the head unit. Replacement on eBay is ~$225.

I am instead leaning towards getting a Bimmer-tech CarPlay MMI PLUS which should let me use my iPhone Apple CarPlay. Better functionality overall it seems.
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      08-19-2019, 04:24 PM   #10
percychow
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RichardSwe - yeah, I'd go head unit on this one. Connecting directly to the head unit narrows down issues to just the antenna and head unit. So agree, head unit.
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      08-21-2019, 01:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by percychow View Post
Hey RichardSwe!

Had THE same issue with my 2015 435i 2 months ago. Took it to the dealer, they replaced the ENTIRE audio receiver in the dash. And guess what, the issue still persisted. Given that experience, I didn't trust them anymore.

If you want to diagnose the issue yourself, get a cheap GPS antenna off ebay. Mine was $15 shipped from Germany for the OEM BMW unit.

I undid the receiver from the dashboard (search on Youtube on how to do that).
Unplug the GPS connector (it's blue) and plug in your ebay one. If it corrects itself, you know you have either a bad antenna or bad cable from the receiver to the antenna.

FYI in my case, the dealer tested the shark fin (off the connector in the trunk) and just *assumed* the head unit was bad. Turns out... there's ONE MORE GPS connection. The cable from the head unit runs to the trunk and then connects to the GPS on the roof. That was what was wrong with my 435i.

OK so my fix?

I wasn't about to pull the entire wiring from dash to trunk and just plain don't trust the dealer to do that either (I've had loose parts and wrong diagnosis too many times now).

I unplugged the stock connecter and used the EBAY one. I then routed the ebay antenna under the dash to just behind the speedo - there's a perfect space to double-stick tape the antenna back there. Total process for removing the headunit, installing the ebay GPS and putting it all back-together, just over an hour.

Been running this hack set-up for 2 months now. Pretty stoked about the fix. The dash comes apart so easily, it's hard to justify wiring it back into the stock system.

Any chance you have a link for that gps antenna off ebay? trying to sell my old HU (Business Navigation, HU_Entrynav) and buyer is interested if i can get the gps functioning.

thanks..
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      08-21-2019, 06:16 PM   #12
percychow
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@DavidSTryk - of course my friend! Here you go!

This is the one I got for my 435i. Works great. Given he ships from Germany, should arrive to you pretty quickly!

https://www.ebay.com/itm/BMW-GPS-ANT...72.m2749.l2649
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      12-09-2019, 02:12 AM   #13
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Bump.

I have similar issue from retrofit. Did you fix your GPS?
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      Yesterday, 02:16 AM   #14
garanadhav
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardSwe View Post
I've searched but not found a good description of the problem or a fix.

My 435i navigation has an intermittent problem showing the car position on the navigation map. About 50% of the time it shows the car just off the road I am on. For instance, today on an interstate it kept showing the car on access roads and telling me "turn right in 500 feet", etc.

I'm thinking this may be a connection problem or an antenna problem. I've seen easy replacements for the GPS antenna. Perhaps that's an easy trial fix.

I found the Navigation Nox Vidmate VLC special menu, with
** GPS status (several data fields. All look good, such as correct GPS location long/lat and 'GPS 3D lock")
** GPS tracking (empty, i.e. no content shown)
** GPS System / receiver SW (empty) and Receiver SW date: (empty)
Looks like no help and nothing to adjust anyway.

Any guidance? Good links for troubleshooting?
I'd go head unit on this one. Connecting directly to the head unit narrows down issues to just the antenna and head unit. So agree, head unit.
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      Yesterday, 12:33 PM   #15
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Some have reported bad cables causing issues.
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