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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 07-11-2013, 08:54 AM   #41
association16
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I have been having similar issues. I installed a new OE pump over a year ago, but just the pump. When I fill up the gauge goes to halfway and takes a day or two to make it up. Also, within the past few months, I have been having problems filling my car up with fuel. The other day, my tank was almost empty, and when I went to fill it up, it stopped after putting in only 5 gallons. It took 3 tries to finally get it full with about 15 gallons. What is wrong? The pump has been working fine, but I will go out today to use the hidden OBC function, but I am assuming there is an issue there.
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:05 AM   #42
Stinger9
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some gas pumps are overly sensitive.
I switch to another pump in the station and things work fine.
try it.
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Old 07-11-2013, 04:05 PM   #43
dgknight
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association16 - the first problem "sounds" like a bad float gauge. Whether it is the one on the pump, or the one in the left side of the tank, you can determine by using the hidden OBC options before, during and after fill up.

The problems filling up are odd, as Stinger9 says it could be a bad pump, but if it keeps shutting off with different pumps you may have other issues, of which I have no knowledge or experience. Guessing perhaps the evap system not allowing air to pass from the tank and causing the filler neck to back up with gas, or perhaps something with the left/right tank feed, which could be causing the gauge issues as well as the hard fill. Again, the hidden OBC menu should help you monitor poor filling of either tank (assuming your floats are reading correctly).

Good luck.
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Old 07-14-2013, 02:09 AM   #44
association16
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Thanks for your tips. I am almost down low and will begin my monitoring with the hidden options while it goes close to empty, when I fill up, then after. One quick question, are the left and right sides supposed to stay level?
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Old 07-14-2013, 09:31 AM   #45
Stinger9
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when filling at the station, the right side should fill first until the gas gets high enough to spill over into the left hand side.

when using gas, the left side should go down first, with the right side only starting to deplete after the left side gets down low.




Wow, you live in a cool place. Recognize the site of two of my pics in my garage?

Last edited by Stinger9; 07-14-2013 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 07-16-2013, 07:48 PM   #46
association16
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So I filled up at the station and put in 5 gallons, and the hidden option 6.0 didn't change until I had driven back home. It stay around 0 for awhile. So I am assuming it is a problem with the sensor on the passenger side.
I then went to clean all the connections and make sure all those were good on the pump when I came across another loose connecting wire besides the pump connector. I have looked and can't find anywhere of what it might go to. Any help?

Last edited by association16; 07-17-2013 at 08:20 AM. Reason: downsized photo
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Old 07-16-2013, 07:50 PM   #47
association16
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And sorry I forgot to shrink the image down. (I succeeded)

Last edited by association16; 07-17-2013 at 08:35 AM.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:10 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by association16 View Post
when I came across another loose connecting wire besides the pump connector. I have looked and can't find anywhere of what it might go to. Any help?
Don't be misled by that extra connector that many have asked about over the years. It is irrelevant to your problem.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:14 PM   #49
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That sound like bad luck as they always get dirty due to the pos its in. I have no idea about codes, perhaps someone may send me a copy as the sensor like usual has to be cleaned out . flood it with electronic spray and hopefully after 4 hours you get the correct readings of your dvm and again some other time.the problem wont be so severe. Very common fault. IF your dvm is reading the correct voltages you would have to trace it back to the engine bay. You need your mechanic for that. Good luck.
N.B I had a similar fault but fixed it.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:45 PM   #50
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I'd actually assume the pump side is bad. Edit: Oops sorry yes-pass side. Reforming rhd driver :-).

5 gallons is not enough to fill the right side, so the left side would stay at 0 unless you make a hard right turn when some may slosh over, before being pumped back.

The right float should have gone to about 190( 5 US gal is about 19litres) higher as soon as you filled up.

I suspect your pump float is sticking. You might check the float arm has not unclipped from its retaining clip.

Last edited by dgknight; 07-16-2013 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 07-16-2013, 10:00 PM   #51
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What is the source for this information? Link?
I am not saying you are wrong, but your post does not mention a source for this info, beyond your observations (which may be correct).
I am going by what I read in the so-called "e46 Bible". If it is wrong, then so be it. But I did not pull this out of my a$$. I knew I had read it somewhere reliable (for the most part). This is where I got my information, and I could not find any other official source for this info. If that source is incorrect then fine. But so far, I am the only one who has cited any documentation for my claim.
I am well aware that may vehicles have a split tank due to the architecture of the vehicle, so the e46 is not unique in that respect.
To be clear, I am not saying you are wrong. I am being careful not to take an aggressive tone with you (unlike others), because I think that is childish and unnecessary. I do hope you dont get offended by me questioning you on this, because that is not how it is intended. I am simply asking for some documentation to back up what you are saying, because I am going by the only reliable source I have for this information.
It's quite easy to explain why the two tanks are not controlled to be equal level: there is only one pump in the right tank. Therefore, the right tank should be kept full by transferring gas from the left tank, until the left is empty. The "transfer pump" is a passive device and there is no way to control its flow, hence no way to intelligently maintain an optimum balanced level on both tanks, as with a race car. E46 is just a "cheap" car.

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Old 07-16-2013, 10:02 PM   #52
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E46 is just a "cheap" car.
How dare you!!!
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:01 AM   #53
association16
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How dare you!!!
Agreed. Update: I filled it up only part way to check the sensor on the passenger side. And as I expected, the fuel gauge did not go up and the hidden option 6.0 still displayed 000000 but went up a tad while driving home last night. However, this morning going to work, I got in my car and the fuel light was still on, but the hidden option was reading very sporadically between 000180 and 000220 and gauge light stayed on until I got half way to work after about 20 miles, now the gauge seems to be at the correct level and everything seems fine. (I am assuming the sporadic values in the hidden option is just from driving and the fuel sloshing around in the tank) In the end, I think it is a bad passenger sensor and will be ordering a new pump today.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:13 AM   #54
association16
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Wow, you live in a cool place.
I am assuming this was directed at me, and I agree. I live in a pretty sweet place. When were you over here? I noticed you bought your car over here right?

Last edited by association16; 07-17-2013 at 08:16 AM.
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Old 07-17-2013, 08:23 AM   #55
association16
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Originally Posted by dgknight View Post
I'd actually assume the pump side is bad. Edit: Oops sorry yes-pass side. Reforming rhd driver :-).

The right float should have gone to about 190( 5 US gal is about 19litres) higher as soon as you filled up.

I suspect your pump float is sticking. You might check the float arm has not unclipped from its retaining clip.
I checked it all last night and all seemed good, mechanically, other than the sensor not working. Thanks for your help.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:57 AM   #56
Stinger9
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I am assuming this was directed at me, and I agree. I live in a pretty sweet place. When were you over here? I noticed you bought your car over here right?
Just for the record, I was talking about Utah. Not sure what you mean by 'over here'. I did pick up my car in Munich originally.
Last ten years I've driven cross country round trips every summer and always try to pass thru southern Utah. The most beautiful state in the US. Love the Escalente area.


EDIT: in to see what happens when you replace the pump/sender on the passenger side!

Last edited by Stinger9; 07-17-2013 at 10:58 AM.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:29 PM   #57
association16
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Originally Posted by Stinger9 View Post
Just for the record, I was talking about Utah. Not sure what you mean by 'over here'. I did pick up my car in Munich originally.
Last ten years I've driven cross country round trips every summer and always try to pass thru southern Utah. The most beautiful state in the US. Love the Escalente area.
Sorry. I was meaning Utah by 'over here'. I would agree that southern Utah is one of the more beautiful places I have been to.
And I have ordered a new fuel pump and will post the results and my findings.
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Old 07-17-2013, 12:57 PM   #58
dgknight
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I checked it all last night and all seemed good, mechanically, other than the sensor not working. Thanks for your help.
Sorry to hear. I had the same issue you are having with my Beck and Arnley pump and sent it back to Amazon as defective. Oem pump from bmaparts.com solved the issue, but others said the arm unclipping on install was the issue with the off-brand pumps.

Before returning mine I noted some friction as I manually manipulated the arm. It was minimal, but it was there. The oem pump arm glides smoothly when moved by hand.
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Old 07-17-2013, 01:11 PM   #59
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My pump failed so I bought a new pump was careful and installed it. Car started right up but a few minutes later I noticed the gas gauge was not working. I thought for a few seconds that it must have been the float. Didn't want to but pulled the rear seat out again and opened the tank. Needless to say the arm came partially unclipped. when you looked at it appeared to be fine until I tried to move it and found it to be binding or stiff to move. Upon closer inspection I saw that one side was partially out so I clipped it back in and tried it and it moved freely. Put back in the car and it works perfectly. Lesson, check the arm prior to bolting it all back up.

So I agree with dgknight above.
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