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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #1
we recently purchased a 2014 825i s4 at an auction at what seemed like a pretty good deal. Was sold as is, but it's a pretty strong running UTV. One problem I've discovered since we got it home is that the power steering unit is non-functional. I assumed this unit simply didn't have power steering, but now that I know it's there I'd like for it to function as it should.

I've read a bunch of posts that mention a circuit breaker near the battery, but I can't seem to find one. I've also heard references to a c-97 relay, but I can't seem to locate that either.

I did do some wire tracing and measurements with my multimeter. Coming out of the wiring loom from the power steering unit is a 4 wire connector with 14v on the yellow wire, 4ish v on the red wire (which I gather is the voltage from the speed sensor), and no voltage on the others. There is also a much larger single wire connector that has .4v on it; I'm assuming by the gauge of the wiring that this is the main power supply to the EPAS unit, but I can't seem to find a wiring diagram anywhere that will show me where to trace that larger wire to.

The lack of voltage on the larger wire seems to be my problem, and I was assuming that this might be due to a bad relay, but I can't find the relay to replace it, nor can I find any good writeups on troubleshooting the relay or the wiring. In my searching, I also haven't been able to locate a wiring diagram to show me if there are additional connectors I should be investigating.
 

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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #2
update confirming my suspicions. I ran a jumper wire from the battery to the connector on the large gauge red wire going in to the power steering box. As soon as I did, there was an audible click, then power steering was fully functional. This tells me there is a fault somewhere in that wire, possibly in the c-97 relay. Now I just need to know where in the world I'm looking for this relay.
 

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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #4
Do you have the service manual? If not that might be a wise purchase.
not yet. JD has bumped their head with their $165 download, and most of the sites I've seen that are more reasonable also seem pretty sketchy. I've seen a few ebay listings that offer downloadable manuals, but I'm not sure how much I trust that either. I'd prefer a downloaded copy to a print manual as I'm most likely to be using it from my PC, and can print off pages if I need them.
 

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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #5
well I found the wire and fuseable link. The last 10" or so of the red wire was replaced with a grey wire labeled "fuseable link 2.0mm", with the actual link being about 10" down the wire and covered in abrasion shielding. No relay boxes, fuses, circuit breakers or anything like that.
I haven't cut the link open, but did observe that there is 9.5v at the connecter for the EPAS if it's disconnected but .4v when it's connected (and attempting to pull load through the line). Seems a pretty good indication that the fuseable link is toast.
Now for the fun part...rather than putting another fuseable link in line, I'd like to put in a waterproof fuse holder, but I don't know what size fuse to put in place. I've seen a few references to the EPAS being governed by a 15 amp fuse (but I can't seem to locate one), so that might be a good starting point.
 

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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #6
Last update for the night. Replaced the fuseable link with an inline fuse holder and a 15 amp fuse. No joy.

Removed the seats and plastic driveline tunnel covers and did a quick visual inspection. Not a swinging connection or relay in sight. Looks like tomorrow is the day for pulling apart the entire wiring loom and looking for a break in the 12ga supply wire.

I'm super thankful that JD decided to use 8 separate 12ga red wires for power supplies in the same loom. That's going to make this super easy for tracing wires. (Secretly wishing someone would invent a sarcasm font)
 

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Could run a new power wire and not use the stock wiring.

Used temporarily it would verify your PS issues is the result of poor electrical power delivery.
 

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2014 825i S4
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Discussion Starter #8
Could run a new power wire and not use the stock wiring.

Used temporarily it would verify your PS issues is the result of poor electrical power delivery.
That was the second troubleshooting thing I did, which confirmed that the EPAS is functional.
 

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Awesome. I didn’t want you to go through all of this work to find out the unit is defective.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Awesome. I didn’t want you to go through all of this work to find out the unit is defective.
me neither. I started with the simple stuff (bad contact at a connection point, blown fuse, bad relay (which this unit doesn't have a relay)), then tested the unit (tested good with a jumper wire straight from the battery), then replaced the fuseable link with an actual fuse.

Now I'm left with tracing the entire wire looking for a bad spot. If that fails, the final step is just run an entirely new wire; joy!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Today's update: cleaned all the accumulated crud from under the seats, center tunnel, etc. Removed all the old electrical tape, then started removing the whole wiring loom to trace the hot wire. Followed it all the way to under the passenger side front seat. Found the "short stop" circuit breaker. Removed it from the circuit and power steering is back in business; breaker had over 100 ohms of resistance, so something is certainly wrong in there. I'm going to put a new one in, but at the first sign of problems I'm splicing the wires together and throwing the breaker in the trash. I don't really see the need for a breaker and a fuse on the same circuit.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
For anyone curious, the breaker is a "short stop" self resetting breaker with a bracket, 12v 50 amp. Found it on Amazon for $8 with prime shipping.

On the s4, it's located on the inner side of the front passenger side seat, bolted up about as high as you get on the sheet metal. 13mm bolt and nut on the backside by the seatbelt.
 

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I wonder if the the circuit breaker was quicker responding than the fuses and perhaps needed when the wheels are locked and trying to steer.

Glad you found the issue and thanks for reporting back your detailed findings.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I wonder if the the circuit breaker was quicker responding than the fuses and perhaps needed when the wheels are locked and trying to steer.

Glad you found the issue and thanks for reporting back your detailed findings.
I think the circuit breaker simply malfunctioned. It claims to auto reset, but that clearly didn't happen, as it turned into a 100 ohm resistor on the circuit. I've got a 15 amp inline fuse in place of the fuseable link, and it didn't trip going wheel lock to lock while parked (which is supposed to be maximum current to the road; steering assist is decreased with wheel speed according to JDs part description).

If the 15 amp fuse doesn't blow under max draw, I'm baffled at how a 50 amp circuit breaker would fail. But time will tell I guess.
 

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Perhaps there is a voltage spike when the wheel hits something and the steering is held in place. (Just a guess)

It could be the circuit breaker is not sealed and failed due to corrosion.
 
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