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      07-17-2011, 09:40 PM   #1
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Dude, where's my car?

Had a pretty terrifying moment today. While out on a drive , I pulled over to pick up something from a friend's house. The road in front of his house is somewhat steep, and I didn't want to shut the engine off for a 30 second errand, so I put the car in neutral and pulled the handbrake up.

I got out of the car, and started walking towards his door, when all hell broke loose. I heard a tire noise, and when I looked behind, my car was rolling back down the hill. I sprinted as hard as I could, and by some miracle managed to get to the driver's side, open the door, and jab my foot on the brake. Let me tell you guys, there's nothing quite like flying down a hill at 20 miles an hour with your weight hanging on the door frame.

When I got the car stopped, I took a peek, and confirmed that the handbrake was in fact in the 'up and locked' position, and the handbrake light was on. I guess my question is, is it likely that my parking brake is now damaged? Or was it faulty before the incident? Does the parking brake just suck on the E9x M3?

Cheers

EDIT: I have DCT.

Last edited by Echo M3; 02-23-2013 at 07:55 PM.
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      07-17-2011, 09:44 PM   #2
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      07-17-2011, 09:45 PM   #3
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it shouldn't roll with the ebrake on....

you should ask your dealer to check it
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      07-17-2011, 09:46 PM   #4
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One other question (Sorry to slightly hijack), if you car was in fact rolling down a hill at speed would it automatically lock you out once it reaches the speed even if it was out of gear?
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      07-17-2011, 09:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by persian54 View Post
it shouldn't roll with the ebrake on....

Thanks for pointing out the completely obvious......
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      07-17-2011, 09:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaypod View Post
Thanks for pointing out the completely obvious......
Yes it's something completely obvious, but did his car behave like it's obviously suppose to?
No.
Thus, he needs to take it in and have them check it out

It was most likely damaged before this incident as if it was operating as designed, the car would indeed not have rolled, forcing him to chase after it.
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      07-17-2011, 09:52 PM   #7
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was the handbrake pulled all the way up?

if you just pulled it up slightly (half way) and the hill was really steep then
im not suprised it started to roll away. Very unlikely that the ebrake is damaged.
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      07-17-2011, 09:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by persian54 View Post
Yes it's something completely obvious, but did his car behave like it's obviously suppose to?
No.
Thus, he needs to take it in and have them check it out

It was most likely damaged before this incident as if it was operating as designed, the car would indeed not have rolled, forcing him to chase after it.
Again, thanks for pointing out the obvious.

Also, it may not be damaged at all, may not have been completely engaged or need an adjustment.....
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      07-17-2011, 10:02 PM   #9
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don't trust the e-brake. never have. glad no significant damage to your car. let's try not to blame this on BMW, okay?
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      07-17-2011, 10:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
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don't trust the e-brake. never have. glad no significant damage to your car. let's try not to blame this on BMW, okay?
I disagree. Rule of thumb is if you're on a steep hill you always leave your car in gear. However, a hand brake should never fail. That being it said, they do, and when they do, it should be regarded as being faulty or maybe a bit loose.
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      07-17-2011, 10:13 PM   #11
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      07-17-2011, 10:16 PM   #12
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your parking brake prob needs to be tightened.
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      07-17-2011, 10:19 PM   #13
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glad you have a sense of humor about all this first you shit your pants then laugh. glad it was a happy ending.
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      07-17-2011, 10:38 PM   #14
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I've always noticed how whenever I engage the e-brake on a steep hill the car rolls unless I pull it up with all my might. It's been like that since day 1
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      07-17-2011, 10:46 PM   #15
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Two things can be learned from this incline parking incident:

1. Check that your e-brake seems to be working before walking away from your vehicle.

2. Turn your wheel against the curb (seems like we all know this yet none of us probably ever do it, myself included).

I also wonder if the e-brake was loose/damaged. I would for sure have your dealer check it out just to be on the safe side. You never know (this may be the first ever report I've heard of such a thing). I have seen reports of older vehicles having rusted e-brakes that fail. I would also imagine if you pulled it too hard you could potentially brake something, so perhaps you or a prior driver could have done something like that to damage it. Or perhaps you didn't pull it tight enough. You could do some testing in a nearby parking lot if you want to double check your own usage of it. Please post back and let us know if you figure this one out, either way! Thanks for the blatant reminder that these things are very fragile and the dumbest of moves can end with a $60K weekend tragedy...
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      07-17-2011, 10:58 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JS11 View Post
I've always noticed how whenever I engage the e-brake on a steep hill the car rolls unless I pull it up with all my might. It's been like that since day 1
same here.
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      07-17-2011, 11:00 PM   #17
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My ebrake has never completely locked up my wheel unless I pulled the handle up as tight as possible to the last ratchet. Anything less and the car can still role. It came like this from the factory.
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      07-17-2011, 11:04 PM   #18
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The e-brake on this car is flawed by design. My car did the same thing. I wasn't as lucky as the OP. Had insurance total my car (see other posts regarding my situation).

BMW can suck it - they designed a fucked up e-brake that over 15+ M3 drivers report roll-back from a flat and even surface pulled up 80-90%.
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      07-17-2011, 11:05 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ///MMB View Post
your parking brake prob needs to be tightened.
It's self adjusting...
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      07-17-2011, 11:09 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Totti View Post
One other question (Sorry to slightly hijack), if you car was in fact rolling down a hill at speed would it automatically lock you out once it reaches the speed even if it was out of gear?
Great question. I don't think it locked me out, but I really don't recall.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gkap View Post
was the handbrake pulled all the way up?

if you just pulled it up slightly (half way) and the hill was really steep then
im not suprised it started to roll away. Very unlikely that the ebrake is damaged.
I think it was one notch from the top, I believe. Again, I'm not really sure - I only know I pulled on it fairly hard before leaving the car. It definitely was not 'half engaged' or anything like that.

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Originally Posted by chriszeh View Post
glad you have a sense of humor about all this first you shit your pants then laugh. glad it was a happy ending.
. My thought exactly. You have to laugh these types of things off. That's life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IPvFletch View Post
Two things can be learned from this incline parking incident:

1. Check that your e-brake seems to be working before walking away from your vehicle.

2. Turn your wheel against the curb (seems like we all know this yet none of us probably ever do it, myself included).

.
Thanks for the advice. I intend on checking it out myself. If it still rolls with the brake fully engaged, I'll have it checked out by the dealer.

If I had turned the wheels, my car would now be in a 30 ft. ditch. But in most circumstances, you are correct. I plan on doing this whenever I park, from now on.
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      07-17-2011, 11:21 PM   #21
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glad everything was OK, did you pull the hand brake up hard enough?
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      07-17-2011, 11:40 PM   #22
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Definitely wasn't up high enough. Glad everything worked out OK but why leave the car running? you should have just shut it off and parked it normally. You have to be careful because a lot of bad things could happen over nothing. I don't know if I would have tried to jump in the car. I had a case where a 19 yo kid died trying to get into a car rolling away like that.
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