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E90 General discussion and technical help for 2005-current 3 series cars.

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Old 06-01-2007, 06:42 PM   #1
gdamato

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Unhappy 325i getting harder and harder to start

My 2005 325i is showing some interesting behavior. About a month ago I noted some hesitation (cranking maybe five secs) on all COLD starts (first start of the day).

It went away for a while, but now it's back with a vengeance and getting worse by the day. The number of seconds of cranking it takes to start is proportional to the number of hours the car has been cold - overnight, it takes 8 to 15 secs or so. When I start her during the day, no hesitation at all.

I have to travel, and the last time I left the car cold for five days, it took a good 25 secs to start! Next time I'm guessing it won't start. I'm in Venice CA and unfortunately the only neareby dealer is the notorious Santa Monica BMW (service dept rated F with the BBB) so I don't want to take it there. The local indie shops can't do warranty work. I made an appointment with Beverly Hills BMW but they have no Sat hours so it's not until 6/29. I doubt the car will be starting that week!

I've done some research - fuel pump issue?? I'm hoping it's something I can take care of myself. I'm an ex-submarine mechanic, don't know much about auto engines.

Thanks in advance!

Glenn
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Old 06-01-2007, 08:02 PM   #2
Dudesky

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I would agree, it sounds like a fuel issue. Could be the fuel pump, but I'd lean more towards the fuel filter since the car is only a couple years old. What kind of gas are you using? Did you switch brands or octane ratings? Possibly dirty injectors as well. Maybe try some fuel system cleaner in the meantime.
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Old 06-01-2007, 10:27 PM   #3
gdamato

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Thanks, Dudesky. I use only the super premium gas, 91 octane (over $4 in LA). A clogged fuel filter makes sense. After the fuel lines have had a chance to drain back to the tank and dry out, the pump has a hard time drawing fuel. When the car runs and the lines are filled with gas, it starts easily. Nice theory. I hope the filter is user-friendly!
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Old 06-01-2007, 11:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gdamato
. A clogged fuel filter makes sense. After the fuel lines have had a chance to drain back to the tank and dry out, the pump has a hard time drawing fuel. When the car runs and the lines are filled with gas, it starts easily. Nice theory. I hope the filter is user-friendly!
Partially correct. The only problem w/that theory is your fuel lines DON'T drain back, they're still presurized after turning car off. I still agree that it's a fuel issue but I'm leaning towards injectors sticking open and fuel bleeding into the cylinders. How many miles on the car? last maintenance? Run some STP gas treatment through it and save yourself some $$$ and switch to the middle grade fuel.
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Old 06-02-2007, 12:20 AM   #5
gdamato

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Thanks c1apton. There's only 21,000 miles, had it checked by a dealer last December before I drove from VA to CA. I'll try the treatment and the mid-grade fuel and see if it helps. Thanks again!
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Old 06-02-2007, 04:39 AM   #6
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Fuel pressure regulator...?
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Old 06-03-2007, 11:32 PM   #7
gdamato

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On Saturday morning I tried c1apton's suggestion of adding a bottle of injector-cleaner treatment to the fuel. Being cold for about 15 hours, it took about 20 - 25 seconds of cranking to start the car.

I ran some errands, driving about 50 miles total (1/8 tank). Saturday night, the car was cold for about 15 hours again - but when I tried to start her Sunday morning . . . behold, she started after maybe five seconds of cranking! There SEEMS to be a major difference.

I gotta go to Seattle this week, leaving the car parked at my apartment for five days. The big test will be next Saturday morning - will she start? If the cranking time continues to decrease, then it was the injectors and c1apton's idea worked. But since the cranking time has been proportional to the time since last start, I'm keeping my fingers crossed for Saturday morning.
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Old 06-04-2007, 04:52 PM   #8
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What are you doing in Seattle, work? Just asking beause I live there.
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Old 07-02-2007, 09:54 PM   #9
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Well ,it could be the fuel filter that made it difficult for starting,it could have been clogged.So far, I have no complaints. It’s running very well. The parts are tough. I make it a point to check every single part so as to avoid any problem in the road. Hopefully, I haven’t had any trouble with it during rush. I got to replace its *spam plug removed* last week and I’m fortunately enough that it’s only the part that I needed to purchase for it this month.

Last edited by witeshark; 07-02-2007 at 10:32 PM..
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Old 07-03-2007, 09:59 AM   #10
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I have a weird problem with my E30 touring as well:
It doesn't like starting from time to time...
it does NOT depend on the weather or the temperature, nor on the engine temperature or anything, my bro said he already switched the ignition distributor, spark plugs are all new, so I really don't know
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:18 AM   #11
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hi
i have same problem
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Old 10-09-2012, 11:37 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by aymanakd View Post
hi
i have same problem
Look into replacing your starter if the above mentioned has not resolved the problem.
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