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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 11-16-2012, 09:56 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Toronto
Posts: 2
My Ride: 320i
Car getting old...

Our 2001 320i is getting old and lots of problems are popping up lol. I fixed several issues thanks to the DIYs here. (Tail light harness, turn signal grounding, etc.)

But this one doesn't seem covered, or maybe I'm not searching right... This happens randomly when there is less than 1/4 tank of gas. The car would suddenly lose all power (split second) and then come back alive.

For now, we fill up before it reaches 1/4 tank and the problem doesn't show up anymore, so my noob guess is the fuel pump is going. But I want more expert opinion on this.

On another note, about the tail light harness: The "trunk open light" is back on, and this time the reverse lights don't come on when in reverse either Should I get a new harness or, should I just electrical tape the wires some more? lol

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-16-2012, 10:46 PM   #2
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Location: Savannah, GA
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My Ride: R1100GS E46 E53
Check you contact to ground on the tail lights, ensure that they are clean and free of any corrosion. And if the car dies below 1/4 tank then you can bet its tank related. Could be the scavenge pump used to move fuel from on side of the tank to the other. If it was your primary fuel pump, logic would dictate that the problem would occur at any fuel level.
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Old 11-17-2012, 04:16 AM   #3
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Location: Willamette Valley, Oregon
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My Ride: '00 328i ZSP w/ 217k
The less fuel you have, the harder your fuel pump has to work to move the fuel. Mine went out in July and left me stranded 50 miles from home. The car was losing power at certain rpms and then finally died after a few weeks. If your miles are high and you are on the original fuel pump, I'd replace it as a precaution anyway so you don't get stranded like I did.

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Old 11-17-2012, 08:54 AM   #4
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Replace fuel filter! If it's the original from the factory... shame on you.
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:13 AM   #5
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Definitely a fuel pump indicator. Pump gets weak and doesn't have enough power to transfer the fuel, from the driver's side tank over to the passenger side tank where the pickup is located, via the sucking jet pump. So while you still have fuel in the small tank, it isn't able to get to the larger side.
Replace your pump as it is going bad fast.
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