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General E46 Forum
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Old 06-26-2012, 11:54 PM   #1
FenderGuy05
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Exclamation In the middle of changing fuel pump and...

So as some know I had my fuel pump die on me the other day, after a fillup, of course. I had read it's best to change it on an empty tank, but unfortunately my fuel pump didn't warn me. So, i get to the point of pulling the pump out...breaks free and gas goes everywhere...had to shove it back into the tank to stop it. Has anyone had to do something because they were on a full tank? Am i stuck syphoning, or just letting some spill, and if so how much is going to spill?

I'm kind of in a panic and not going to do anything tonight, hopeing it evaporates soon, i was doing work in my apartment garage...ugh.
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:01 AM   #2
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you didnt relase the pressure didnt you?
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:46 AM   #3
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You don't have to release the pressure. You just let the pump in there, and then remove the hose first, and while removing have a rag wrapped around the hose as it comes off. That's it. Not magic or anything. It just comes out a bit and that's it. You don't have to go to the fuel rail and piss around or whatever.

Just be careful fender guy and take your time...if it does spill, have a stack of rags on standby. Also, it's better to have a full tank so your fuel pump gets immersed and doesnt pump air into the engine.
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:49 AM   #4
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I think if you are really on a full tank you will need to siphon about 2+ gallons? Might as well get a 5 gallon can and take more out than you need.

Also when you go to reassemble, put the gasket on the tank, not the sending unit!
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:20 AM   #5
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+1 on the J-meister.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:29 AM   #6
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Well, i posted this to see what I could get from everyone last night. I ended up searching and found a thread about this, from what I did read syphoning the tank on the e46 is nearly impossible...you just have to let it ride. I did release pressure, the fuel was when I lifted the sending unit from the tank, not the line to the unit. Just started pouring out...most has evaporated by this morning, and my apartment garage wasn't too bad.

Bottom line is I'm going to call AAA, to tow my car to an abandoned parking lot down the street, where I see a lot of people from my apartments doing car work, and just do it, let the fuel spill down the back of the tank, at least it will be outside and will evaporate quickly.

But what a night I had...haha.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:31 AM   #7
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you have that much huh to where it's at the level of the top of the fuel pump? wow.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:33 AM   #8
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I literally filled up that morning, probably drove 5-10 miles, and the pump died...just a testament to do it on your terms rather then the cars.

Here's the thread I found on google last night: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=907307
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:33 AM   #9
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you didnt relase the pressure didnt you?
exactly what I was thinking.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:51 AM   #10
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Still waiting for my pump to arrive. I can hear the current pump making some weird chewbacca noises under the rear seat and it's scaring the crap out of me. This thing can't get here fast enough!
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:21 PM   #11
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I just updated my recent post with info about siphoning, I have not tried it, but there may be some baffle or something that keeps a hose from going in the tank the full distance?

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...501&highlight=
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Hidden OBC Menu - Check Voltage, Temps, Fuel Level - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=239619

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Old 06-27-2012, 12:33 PM   #12
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I just updated my recent post with info about siphoning, I have not tried it, but there may be some baffle or something that keeps a hose from going in the tank the full distance?

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...501&highlight=
Good stuff, definitely a testiment to doing it before it fails. I'm not looking forward to tonight, just such a waste of gas. But if I don't do it I'll end up paying hundreds in labor!
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Old 06-27-2012, 01:24 PM   #13
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Can't you lift up one edge of the fuel pump (the high edge) and siphon what you can from there? or is it leaking evenly all the way around. I'm thinking stick a tiny hose in there some how. how bout the other side? is it higher? (drivers side)
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:14 PM   #14
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It's leaking all the way around, as soon as you break the seal, anywhere...it pours out of the entire opening. I just think I have to deal with it and pull it, right into a bucket, and let the gas spill, from what I read, only about 1/2 a gallon. Then just get the new Oring and pump in ASAP, start her up and do what I can about the fuel on the underside, maybe take it to a car wash stall and do what I can under the car with the hose.

At least I know it's the fuel pump that caused my car to not start, when I disconnected the line to the fuel pump, there was no pressure in the line, I never removed fuse and cranked because I was so sure it was the pump. Turned out right.

P.S. I am so glad I found these forums a week or so before I bought the car! I'd be at a total loss right now.
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:17 PM   #15
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I'm sure it's already obvious but just to be safe, i'll recommend that you have all the windows and doors open while doing this job.



http://www.dvatp.com/bmw/diy/fuel_pump/
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:27 PM   #16
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Of course, I'll be in the open, all doors open, pull it out and dispose and probably walk away for a few mintues to let the fumes disapate. Maybe pour come cat litter on spilt gas when all is said and done, although I figure it will evaporate by the time I actually finish up the job. I'll also be doing the filter before the pump, since the hard part of replacing the pump is done, I'd like to make sure, since I'm out in the open to do the filter while the system isn't pressurized.

Never again will I let the fuel pump fail! Next e46 I buy this will probably be at the top of the list if it wasn't done shortly before purchase!
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:32 PM   #17
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Get an old cardboard box and flatten it out and put newspaper and maybe some cheap clay cat litter on it. This way if you are on asphalt you will not have a problem soaking the asphalt.

This way you can easily dispose of the cardboard/newspaper/litter when you are finished. Much easier to clean up by folding the cardboard rather than trying to sweep up a mess!

Good luck.
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Solve your misfires, lean codes, rough idle - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=897616

Fuel pump failures - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=929501

Temp Info - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=964491

Hidden OBC Menu - Check Voltage, Temps, Fuel Level - http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=239619

E46/E39 GM5 Door Lock Info - www.bmwgm5.com

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Old 06-28-2012, 03:27 PM   #18
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So wrapped this up yesterday. AAA wouldn't cover a tow, so instead of paying 105 dollars to tow me out of my garage, I purchased an emergency tow cable from home depot, and my girlfriends Jetta pulled me down the street.

Once in the lot, the job was simple, as I said the back seat was up, and the ring around the top of the pump was loose, just popped the other pump out carefully, and got the new one in, spillage was minimal comparted to the night previous, may have helped I was on a very slight incline, with my passenger side higher. What little fuel did spill was in the middle of a lot with no brush, etc around it to absorb.

Let fuel on top of tank evaporate, and primed the tank a few times, started right up! Took for some spirited driving, and everything is like new. Now just have to drive for a while with my windows down to get rid of the gas fumes in my car, when I spilled a ton the other day, i left my car closed with windows shut because I was worried about turning the car on with all the fuel that had spilled.

Gonna do the filter in the next couple weeks at my parents house.

Thanks for all the help Mango and jfoj!
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Old 07-02-2012, 01:21 PM   #19
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I think if you are really on a full tank you will need to siphon about 2+ gallons? Might as well get a 5 gallon can and take more out than you need.

Also when you go to reassemble, put the gasket on the tank, not the sending unit!
My pump went out about 6 weeks ago. Had a hell of a time locking it down. Last week filled up for the third time since replacing the pump and started to smell fuel. Got home and fuel was running down the driveway (slope). Got it into the garage on level ground and pulled it open to find that it had popped off. Tried getting it locked back down but it wouldn't stay. The minute I back down onto the street "Pop". Gas all over. I really topped it off.

This all happened on the 24th of June, 2012. Had to go to LA the following day. Got back last night and up this morning early to see if I could find an answer to this cluster Frick and found this one line.

Thank you Sir for that one simple line.

And I feel like a
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Old 07-02-2012, 01:38 PM   #20
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If he hadn't told me I probably would have been in the same position!
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