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General E46 Forum
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:15 AM   #1
mwurman
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Shaker Heights
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My Ride: 2001 BMW 330Cic ZSP
Recent 330cic idle issue

Today I started my e46 330 and had a coolant light on. Noticed the ET was almost empty. So topped it off. I think i have a leak somewhere. Everything has been replaced in the cooling system in the last 25k. But then left and drove to the end of my street and it began acting up with an idle issue. It'll misfire here and there then shudder momentarily. No CEL. I dont think these two are even possibly related...just coincidental? Once i'm moving it seems to run ok. Also noticed as of late that the acceleration feels pretty sluggish. My gas mileage hasn't changed. So did tons of searching and found tons of information on the bazillion things that can cause this...one of which was the possibility of a soft fuel pump failure. It happened with about a 1/4 tank of fuel...but i havent filled the tank yet to see if it goes away with more fuel. Just parked it in the garage and took my other car. So I ordered one just for preventative maintenance since they aren't to expensive. I need to check the lower intake boot for cracks yet, already replaced the upper one. I also plan to check the vacuum system. Vanos hasnt been done yet either (i'm at 105k and its not making noise, so didnt want to touch it). Fuel filter is new in the last 20k.

I'll keep you posted, but anything else I should look at that I over looked?
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:57 AM   #2
Dave1027
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You should have a shop do a cooling system pressure test and maybe a cylinder compression test. You need to find the source of the leak. It might be a blown head gasket.

Last edited by Dave1027; 07-21-2013 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 07-21-2013, 05:39 PM   #3
mwurman
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hmmmm wouldnt i have an assortment of issues if the head gasket were blown? not just misfires? So I was just thinking...i think i goofed on the cooling system flush. I kinda topped it off and really didnt leave room for air...maybe she blew due to that?
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Old 07-21-2013, 08:59 PM   #4
lszlszx
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The are probably not related. As far as the coolant, there must be a leak.
Jack up the car, take off the belly pan and look for white residue, that shows where the coolant is leaking.
If the car is sluggish, but CEL isn't on, it's most likely a fuel supply issue, weak pump, or clogged filter.
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Old 07-22-2013, 02:52 PM   #5
mwurman
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UPDATE: So i reviewed the flushing DIY and one thing i think i overlooked was turning the heat on high when doing the fill. Im pretty sure it was all the way cold when i filled. Just got in from looking at it. No leaks at all anywhere in the system. Turned on the heat, filled the ET, rechecked the purge and drove it around the neighborhood for a bit. lots of start stop. The engine never misfired or acted up either. Ran very smooth, and couldnt even feel it idle. I'm waiting for the car to cool a bit before i pop the cap to see how the level is and to recheck for leaks!

Also did some classic checks on the head gasket. Not seeing any milky white in the oil with on the fill cap or dip stick..not seeing any white smoke either.
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Old 07-24-2013, 08:36 AM   #6
mwurman
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Turns out the cooling issue was in fact a leak. It was the radiator. So pulled it all out and will be picking up a new one this afternoon, along with a new auto trans cooler thermostat and lower coolant tube (PM). Also replaced the fuel pump..tested it before I tore the cooling apart and I already notice an improvement in throttle response and acceleration!



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