PDA

View Full Version : Can I flood my spark plugs by washing car??


purplehead
12-17-2004, 04:59 PM
I washed my car yesterday, and today I try to start her up, it cranks but no fire. I towed the car to BMW dealership and have them take a look at it, they told me it's flooded because when I was about to wash my car, I moved it a couple feet to get it out of the garage and I should have let it keep running for just a few minutes, which I didn't. If they can't get it started by tomorrow, they'll change the spark plugs and it's gonna cost me $200 CDN.

My question is...... does that sound right to you?? I mean.... I've had four cars (honda) and never had any problem like this..... @@

Lanc3r
12-17-2004, 05:03 PM
I washed my car yesterday, and today I try to start her up, it cranks but no fire. I towed the car to BMW dealership and have them take a look at it, they told me it's flooded because when I was about to wash my car, I moved it a couple feet to get it out of the garage and I should have let it keep running for just a few minutes, which I didn't. If they can't get it started by tomorrow, they'll change the spark plugs and it's gonna cost me $200 CDN.

My question is...... does that sound right to you?? I mean.... I've had four cars (honda) and never had any problem like this..... @@


Sounds like Hooey to me! I imagine you have other probs. Your plugs would have to be really fouled for them to be the cause (not likely from starting her and moving her)

Did you take your ride to the Stealer!

purplehead
12-17-2004, 05:14 PM
yeah i couldn't start the car, so i called bmw roadside assistance and they towed my car to a local dealer for free. That's nice, but the service person is..... :dunno:

I guess the spark plugs must be changed, it's just it costs more than what i expected

purplehead
12-17-2004, 05:17 PM
stuff like this really makes me want to change to a 3 series..... my friend's 330 has been problem free, and everything costs cheaper for a 3 series..... like I changed windshield wipers for 30 each, he changed both wipers for total of 30.... sigh, and aftermarket parts are so few for us 5ers.....

I might trade the car in for a 330 if anymore shyt like this happens.......! :mad:

Lanc3r
12-17-2004, 05:19 PM
yeah i couldn't start the car, so i called bmw roadside assistance and they towed my car to a local dealer for free. That's nice, but the service person is..... :dunno:

I guess the spark plugs must be changed, it's just it costs more than what i expected


The best piece of advice I can give is find a reputable Independent BMW shop. I know the dealer is convienient, but pricing is way overboard on just about everything. You'll probably save upwards 50% in costs, and are likely to get more in depth service.

Good Luck!

purplehead
12-17-2004, 05:32 PM
The best piece of advice I can give is find a reputable Independent BMW shop. I know the dealer is convienient, but pricing is way overboard on just about everything. You'll probably save upwards 50% in costs, and are likely to get more in depth service.

Good Luck!

Thanks, it's hard to find a reputable BMW shop in my area. I've tried a couple shops that specialize in BMWs, but was not satisfied with their workmanship....

batmanm3
12-17-2004, 08:07 PM
who did you try in van.?
there are several reputable, honest shops in lower mainland that charge more reasonable rates than the dealer.

check www.bmwccbc.org and ask the bmw club members where they take their cars...several shops are also sponsors for the club as well.

Come out to some of the events sometime...can learn a lot. We have about 400 members

Disclosure: I have 02 M3, 01 540iAT, and am a director on the club and was born in Taiwan :D

hmr
12-17-2004, 08:08 PM
Did you wash the engine?

purplehead
12-18-2004, 02:18 AM
who did you try in van.?
there are several reputable, honest shops in lower mainland that charge more reasonable rates than the dealer.

check www.bmwccbc.org and ask the bmw club members where they take their cars...several shops are also sponsors for the club as well.

Come out to some of the events sometime...can learn a lot. We have about 400 members

Disclosure: I have 02 M3, 01 540iAT, and am a director on the club and was born in Taiwan :D

I did not know about a local bmw club :p

I'll check out the website, and show up for events from now on :thumbup:

edit: I did not see your disclosure before i posted, nice cars you have! It's nice to see another fellow Taiwanese here :bigpimp:

purplehead
12-18-2004, 02:18 AM
Did you wash the engine?

no i did not

vern
12-18-2004, 06:45 AM
I washed my car yesterday, and today I try to start her up, it cranks but no fire. I towed the car to BMW dealership and have them take a look at it, they told me it's flooded because when I was about to wash my car, I moved it a couple feet to get it out of the garage and I should have let it keep running for just a few minutes, which I didn't. If they can't get it started by tomorrow, they'll change the spark plugs and it's gonna cost me $200 CDN.

My question is...... does that sound right to you?? I mean.... I've had four cars (honda) and never had any problem like this..... @@I do what you do as far as just starting up the car backing it out of the garage and then shuting it off.After I'm finushed washing and drying off the car when I start it up to take it for a short ride to get the rust off the rotors it sometime runs rough but after riding it a few blocks its as smooth as silk Did you try starting it up by just turning the key and not pressing the gas pedal??
vern

shabbaman
12-18-2004, 09:49 AM
I washed my car yesterday, and today I try to start her up, it cranks but no fire. I towed the car to BMW dealership and have them take a look at it, they told me it's flooded because when I was about to wash my car, I moved it a couple feet to get it out of the garage and I should have let it keep running for just a few minutes, which I didn't. If they can't get it started by tomorrow, they'll change the spark plugs and it's gonna cost me $200 CDN.

My question is...... does that sound right to you?? I mean.... I've had four cars (honda) and never had any problem like this..... @@

I'm not sure but it sounds to me that the reason gven by your mechanic for the spark plugs being flooded has nothing to do with the car being washed but instead is the result of the car not warming up properly.

Either way, I wouldn't be comfortable with the spark plug theory.

Theory 1 - car wash) The only way I can see a car wash affecting spark performance (if the car was washed with a closed hood) is if a considerable quantinty of water made its' way into the air intake. Very unlikely (unless you spray from the bottom) and very far fetched.

Theory 2 - turning off a cold motor) Your 5 series has one of the most advanced fuel management systems in the world and if it's working properly is not capable of flooding one - let alone 6 spark plugs. Even if 1 or 2 of your plugs were fouled the car would start. It may idle like **** but it will run.

purplehead
12-18-2004, 10:46 AM
I do what you do as far as just starting up the car backing it out of the garage and then shuting it off.After I'm finushed washing and drying off the car when I start it up to take it for a short ride to get the rust off the rotors it sometime runs rough but after riding it a few blocks its as smooth as silk Did you try starting it up by just turning the key and not pressing the gas pedal??
vern

No after I'm done washing I just start it up and move it back to the garage and shut off.

purplehead
12-18-2004, 10:48 AM
I'm not sure but it sounds to me that the reason gven by your mechanic for the spark plugs being flooded has nothing to do with the car being washed but instead is the result of the car not warming up properly.

Either way, I wouldn't be comfortable with the spark plug theory.

Theory 1 - car wash) The only way I can see a car wash affecting spark performance (if the car was washed with a closed hood) is if a considerable quantinty of water made its' way into the air intake. Very unlikely (unless you spray from the bottom) and very far fetched.

Theory 2 - turning off a cold motor) Your 5 series has one of the most advanced fuel management systems in the world and if it's working properly is not capable of flooding one - let alone 6 spark plugs. Even if 1 or 2 of your plugs were fouled the car would start. It may idle like **** but it will run.

Ya...... what you said makes sense. But I still don't know what might've caused this problem..... the dealer will give me an update today, so I guess I can just wait and see...

mottati
12-18-2004, 11:47 AM
I've heard this complaint many, many times, thought not recently. I remember many articles and letters to roundel's tech section. It was actually quite common on the M50 equiped e36/e34's, so I wouldn't completely discredit the dealership. Could be a combiation of weather, temp, and milage on the plugs that made it happen on this particular day. If they hadn't been changed, it certainly wont hurt, the cost seems quite high. I changed the plugs on my M5 recently, and paid around $12/plug, iirc, which was a pretty good price. I believe retail is about 18per, for my car. A fix for the earlier cars (m50 engines) were using a particular off the shelf NGK plug. I don't know, nor did i keep any of the info about this plug, but i used them on my 92 525iT and never had the problem again, car ran better too.
Mike

brianmaslen
12-18-2004, 01:11 PM
Quite a common fault with E39's, both myself with a 530 and friend's 520 have both needed to call the recovery people out after moving the car a short distance..they just don't like it I was told!!!
So remember to always warm the car up before getting the wash leather out! Your dealer does seem to be trying one on I think!

batmanm3
12-19-2004, 12:23 PM
oh I forgot to mention in my earlier post...membership in the bmwccbc will also entitle you to 10% discount at a variety of automotive shops in town for parts and this includes most (?all...can't remember) of the BMW dealers in the lower mainland.

Shameless plug for sure :angel:

Look forward to seeing you in the New Year as a member!

alpinewhite325i
12-19-2004, 03:25 PM
I washed my car yesterday, and today I try to start her up, it cranks but no fire. I towed the car to BMW dealership and have them take a look at it, they told me it's flooded because when I was about to wash my car, I moved it a couple feet to get it out of the garage and I should have let it keep running for just a few minutes, which I didn't. If they can't get it started by tomorrow, they'll change the spark plugs and it's gonna cost me $200 CDN.

My question is...... does that sound right to you?? I mean.... I've had four cars (honda) and never had any problem like this..... @@
That's funny because my BMW doesn't do this.

BUT, my '94 Honda Civic did. It would start, but it would be VERY sluggish for about 5 minutes until the car warmed up.

Sometimes I miss my trouble free Honda.

PhilH
12-20-2004, 10:09 AM
Yeah, you flooded the engine from turning it on and shutting it off so quickly.

It's not a fault of the E39, my E34 did it and our Passat did it (before I realized that it was me that was causing the problem).

Let it run for a minute in the driveway before shutting it off...or do what I do anymore, take off the parking brake and push the car from garage to driveway without even starting it.

alpinewhite325i
12-20-2004, 05:10 PM
Yeah, you flooded the engine from turning it on and shutting it off so quickly.

It's not a fault of the E39, my E34 did it and our Passat did it (before I realized that it was me that was causing the problem).

Let it run for a minute in the driveway before shutting it off...or do what I do anymore, take off the parking brake and push the car from garage to driveway without even starting it.
I push my car in and out of the garage occasionaly.

My neighbors think I've lost my mind!