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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 03-31-2010, 06:29 PM   #1
mvrk10256
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Unhappy need Help!!!! - rough idle, misfire codes, random CEL details inside

here goes.

about 2 weeks ago i swap in ebay headers, didnt have new hardware so i had a pretty serious exhaust leak from the first 3 cylinders. decided i didnt like the headers so i swapped them back to stock. the ebay ones were on there for a week.

now i am getting misfire on cylinder 1, randomly almost immediatly after i swap the stock ones on. never got any o2 related codes at all.

So i try the basic stuff:

1. New plug - Doesnt do anything, cylinder 1 misfire
2. swap coil from cylinder 2 to cylinder 1 and try again - get cylinder 4,5,6 misfire

the car was driven for a tank of gas about 250 miles on ebay headers, ran pretty rich, (only got 17mpg)


so now i still have rough idle, cylinder 3,4,5 misfire randomly and periodically i will get p1189 which is a fuel code. also car will shake sometimes in idle


I need help. what else can i try? dont have a ton of money, but need to fix my car. everything was running fine till i swapped in ebay headers.

Also the fuel filter was replaced about 6 months and 5K miles ago for an OEM unit. car has 98K on it.
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Old 03-31-2010, 06:42 PM   #2
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try replacing the exhaust manifold gaskets, from block to headers.
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Old 03-31-2010, 06:54 PM   #3
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Try checking the air inlet boot. They love to crack and split & can cause some of the issues you have. Chas
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Old 03-31-2010, 06:57 PM   #4
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I chhecked the intake todya. It was ok. Did not do a smoke test but visually ok.


I reused the gaskets from install to install since they are 40$ each. Also I don't know if I can mentally handle a 3rd header swap. but how could it cause misfires. Or rough idle?
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Old 03-31-2010, 07:34 PM   #5
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sorry need a solution soon, have to get car inspected by sunday.
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Old 03-31-2010, 07:51 PM   #6
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vacuum leak?
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Old 03-31-2010, 08:15 PM   #7
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vacuum leak?

like i said i took a look at the intake tubing and could not find any tears or leaks.
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Old 03-31-2010, 09:19 PM   #8
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and your sure you dont have any ses or cel lights? this sounds like what i experienced when i was having o2 sensor problems.
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Old 03-31-2010, 09:20 PM   #9
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and your sure you dont have any ses or cel lights? this sounds like what i experienced when i was having o2 sensor problems.
i do have a cel light but when i read the codes i get misfire codes.
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Old 03-31-2010, 11:04 PM   #10
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update: reset DME got fallowing codes

p1189, p0173, p0170

Please help....
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Old 04-01-2010, 12:46 AM   #11
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update: tried the intake brake cleaner smoke method. didnt change a thing.
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Old 04-01-2010, 12:59 AM   #12
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Same exact thing happened to me last month when I did my headers. Haha, I was stumped.

The problem is that you have the O2 sensors backwards... you have the left side O2 in the right side header and vice versa. Just switch the O2 sensors from each side and you'll be all set.

The computer expects the cylinders to fire at a specific time and it gets this signal from the O2 sensors. I had the EXACT same problem after I did my headers. Glad that I could cure it for you.

Funny, I never thought swapping the sensors would fix the problem but I did it anyway and that was it... FIXED!
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:01 AM   #13
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PS: Next time... make sure you label your O2 sensors before you remove them!
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:03 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catchme46 View Post
Same exact thing happened to me last month when I did my headers. Haha, I was stumped.

The problem is that you have the O2 sensors backwards... you have the left side O2 in the right side header and vice versa. Just swap each side and you'll be all set.

The computer expects the cylinders to fire at a specific time and it gets this signal from the O2 sensors. I had the EXACT same problem after I did my headers. Glad that I could cure it for you.

Funny, I never thought swapping the sensors would fix the problem but I did it anyway and that was it... FIXED!
what do you mean left and right? the pre cat or post cat? come to think of it the wires seemed weird when i was puttting it together. so i put the cylidern 1-3 o2 sensor into the 4-6 plug and visa versa? you also have a pm
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:07 AM   #15
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what do you mean left and right? the pre cat or post cat? come to think of it the wires seemed weird when i was puttting it together. so i put the cylidern 1-3 o2 sensor into the 4-6 plug and visa versa? you also have a pm
You have 2 pre cat O2 sensors and 2 post cat O2 sensors...

You have the 2 pre cat O2 sensors in the wrong header.

Simply swap them from side to side.

The post cat O2 sensors do not matter.

... hold on I'll draw a diagram for you brb.
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:17 AM   #16
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Hehe... how's this?



Oh and by the way...

Here's my install thread which you may find as a help.

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...e+ebay+headers
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:17 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catchme46 View Post
You have 2 pre cat O2 sensors and 2 post cat O2 sensors...

You have the 2 pre cat O2 sensors in the wrong header.

Simply swap them from side to side.

The post cat O2 sensors do not matter.

... hold on I'll draw a diagram for you brb.
HOLY ****ING ****!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


thank you sooo much. just went into the parking lot and swapped the pre cat sensors. and allthe problems go away. all the codes cleared and the idle is fine.

the numbers on the wires dont match up but the pairs must match up now.


pm me your address and I willl send you a fruit basket or something.
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Old 04-01-2010, 01:24 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by mvrk10256 View Post
HOLY ****ING ****!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


thank you sooo much. just went into the parking lot and swapped the pre cat sensors. and allthe problems go away. all the codes cleared and the idle is fine.

the numbers on the wires dont match up but the pairs must match up now.


pm me your address and I willl send you a fruit basket or something.

Yeah man, hard to believe that solved the problem huh? I thought the same thing... "no way this is going to fix it" but it did!

Crazy to think that the O2 sensors are *THAT* quick and accurate with readings. They can actually detect each time the cylinder fires and compare it to what the ecu thinks it should be doing.

Glad to have helped you out! I told you it was 100% going to fix your problem. hehe
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Old 04-01-2010, 07:53 AM   #19
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Glad you got this fixed. Happened to me as well when I installed my Technik headers!!
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Old 04-05-2010, 01:00 AM   #20
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I have the same issue going on right now...I just dumped $2100 on this clown to fix it and now it's back in the shop for the same thing....I was getting real rough idle and an occasional stall....Misfires on 1 and 5....thermostat error and coolant level too low codes from Autozone.. I replaced the Coils (from stock -> to Bav Auto High Performance Coils) and the Spark plugs (replaced all). The car is @ 110K now and had most if not all the same gear from day 1 (thanks to previous owner)...now instead of running rough the minute you turn the car on...it get's rough after driving it for 15 or 20 minutes (seems like when the engine has heated up)...let us see what tomorrow brings.....hopefully a fully functioning 325XI 2004..

Sadly I have not touched the O2 sensors or headers....any idea's?

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