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Driveline, Engine & DME Tuning
Talk about driveline improvements, NA tuning and DME tuning your E46 BMW here. This includes diffs, intakes, exhausts, chips, software and OBD tuning.

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Old 03-01-2010, 01:53 PM   #1
aj330ci
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Dropping a cylinder when the car reaches 1/4 tank of gas

Ok, this is a really strange thing that has been happening to my car for the past few months, and just happened last night, so I'm kind of worried.

I drive a 2004 BMW M3.

When my car reaches right around 1/4 tank of gas left, it feels like the car drops a cylinder. Same feeling as like a coil pack going out. The car loses basically all acceleration, and if you try to get it moving, it just spits, sputters, and dies on you.

After I go to the gas station, fill the car up with gas, and let it run for a little while, it works just fine again. I did some reading on the Internet, and I know how the car is behaving is like a coil pack going out, but I doubt that's it since it only happens when the car reaches 1/4 tank of gas left.

I also know the gas gauge isn't wrong because when I stopped and filled it up, I put 12 gallons in on a 16 gallon tank, with the 4 gallons being the 1/4 tank that was left.

Does anybody have any ideas what could be going wrong with the car? The solution right now is to just keep it above 1/2 tank of gas at all times, but that's just until I can get it to the shop.

Thanks for any and all help!
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:13 PM   #2
Justin@SharkInjectorDirect
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It sounds like it could be a failing fuel pump.

As the fuel level gets lower, it has to work harder to pump the fuel to the engine bay.

Think of it this way. Lets say you were on a 5 story building and there was a bucket of water on the ground level. Imagine trying to suck the water up to your level thru a straw. Now imagine the bucket of water was 6" below your mouth. Much less effort is needed.
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:16 PM   #3
ChasCan
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Maybe something simpler? Fuel filter?
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:22 PM   #4
aj330ci
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin@SharkInjectorDirect View Post
It sounds like it could be a failing fuel pump.

As the fuel level gets lower, it has to work harder to pump the fuel to the engine bay.

Think of it this way. Lets say you were on a 5 story building and there was a bucket of water on the ground level. Imagine trying to suck the water up to your level thru a straw. Now imagine the bucket of water was 6" below your mouth. Much less effort is needed.
I was kind of thinking fuel pump as well. Guess all I can do is drive the 2 hours to the dealership, and let them take a look at it. Oh the joys of BMW maintenance, lol!
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:24 PM   #5
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This might help you.

Good luck

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...highlight=fuel
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:31 PM   #6
aj330ci
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Wow AMAZING write-up! Thanks!
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Old 03-01-2010, 06:42 PM   #7
Justin@SharkInjectorDirect
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Originally Posted by ChasCan View Post
Maybe something simpler? Fuel filter?
A fuel filter would most likely exibit issues all the time. It would not really be dependant on the fuel level.

But, it never hurts to change the fuel filter.
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