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Thread: HELP! In need of info fast!
10-04-2006 11:27 PM #1
HELP! In need of info fast!
I purchased a 1984 318i about nine months ago as a commuter car. Never owned a BMW and have fallen in love with this car. It is pristine and had 86,000 miles on when I bought it.
Last month I decided to "go through" the car and make sure everything was in top working condition. A mechanic was referred to me by a trusted friend who knows the 3 series in and out, and $3,000 later I thought I was free.
Here's the problem. About three weeks after the service the car died for no apparent reason. After driving for twenty minutes or so, when the engine was completely warm, the engine stopped. No studder, no starving of gas, just moving along and bammmm, red lights everywhere on the dasboard. The car started up immediately after each episode and I went on my way.
The stalling has occurred more frequently. I was going full guns toward an entrance ramp on the highway and bammm. Red lights and no engine. It fired right back up and I went on my way.
I took it back to the mechanic and he can't figure out what's going on. He's checked the air intake and said that isn't it, but is moving on to other "probable" causes. At $120 hourly (I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and NOTHING is cheap here) I don't want him poking around in there for days until my bill reaches another $3,000. Can anyone help? Since he's stymied, I thought maybe someone on the forum might have a clue as to what's going on so I can guide him in the right direction.
I had the engine service done which involved new plugs, fuel and air filter, distributor cap, ignition rotor and valve cover gasket. There were also a lot of hoses that needed to be replaced as they were original. P/S hose, idle control hose, etc. I also had the service indicator board replaced as the "Service" light was on constantly. New battery and other work done that has nothing to do with the engine. Like brakes and tightening up the gear shift.
SAVE ME! I want my 318 back and my savings account intact! Any clues that you can provide will be appreciated!
10-06-2006 01:13 AM #2
Let me see if this helps
If you're saying teh car is not studdering before it dies on you, then it's not a fuel or ignition-related problem...or most likely not. Those two areas will induce some sort of hesitation. It's probably electrical. Does the engine "bog" before it dies completely?
Try this at an empty parking lot: Get the car going and shut the car off while it's running. See if it produce the same symptom. If it does, then it's electrical.
Could be a bad relay or wiring somewhere. Worst case senario, it could be a bad ECU.
That's all I can think of. I'm not familiar with electrical problems, but from what you're describing, it doesn't sound like a fuel or ignition related problem because the engine doesn't studder.
Try the E30 forum and see if anyone else has any suggestions. I have an E30 but it's an 89, so the electrical stuff is quite different.
10-06-2006 03:19 PM #3
- El Sobrante, CA, United StatesMember No: 95952
- Join Date
- Dec 2003
- Rep Power
I have similar symptoms with my e28
I'll be going nice and smooth pushing 80 on 80 (lol) and all of a sudden the engine will DIE. No hesitation or anything, the tach just drops straight to zero. In my case this has happened to others on the e28 board and I've narrowed it down to either a) the ECU soldering has gone bad, if you have a steady hand and someone put up a walkthrough on key points you should be able to do it yourself or b) the AFM sensor is bad as it has a thin copper(?) piece that senses the air and this tends to bend out of shape over the years.
Either way you should check the e30 forums and ask around, I'm sure there are awesome people there with buttloads of knowledge and I'm sure it has happened to one of them before :]
When there's a problem with my car I go to the forums first, research everything, buy the parts, THEN go to a shop to get it fixed. I'm sure Steve Haygood can help you out with parts although he's an e24/e28 man, I just ordered a complete front end suspension from him and it came out to 450 shipped =D (that's 8 parts I might add, retail or what you would pay at a shop would've been easily over 1000).
So, in the end I believe it's electrical too, just like Ian2.
Us Ian's are good guys, huh?
88 528e Auto 148k and Still Climbing
Finished Projects: Pioneer DEH-P860MP, 2 Sets MB Quart Premium Components w/ X-Overs, Directed 500W 4-Channel Amp pushing all speakers.
10-06-2006 05:24 PM #4
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