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Old 01-09-2013, 10:58 PM
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QSilver7 QSilver7 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Northeast Indiana
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 9,172
Mein Auto: 1997 740iL / 2006 X5 4.4
The fuel tank capacity is that all e39s have the same 18.5 gallon (70 liters) tank capacity. And as written in the owners manual (and BMW info) the reserve capacity is INCLUDED in the 18.5 gallons (there's no seperate reserve tank) and the reserve capacity is dependent on which engine you have. When the tank is down to the reserve capacity...the low fuel warning light comes on...and that data is sent by the fuel level sensors in the tank.

The reason why you can actually pump more than 18.5 gallons into the tank is because of the additional capacity gained by the filler tube. A simple example is your typical 1 gallon milk jug...we all know that it can hold more than 1 gallon of fluid if you were to refill it up to the cap...yet we all are perfectly fine with calling it a 1 gallon milk jug.

Again, all e39s have the same 18.5 gallon fuel tank and the reserve capacity is determined by which engine you have (V8 or I6)...and that reserve capacity level is indicated by the illumination of the LOW FUEL warning light from the data sent from the fuel level sensors inside the tank:

(as you can see in the diagram & part nbr index...there is NO reserve fuel tank...only the single 18.5 gallon tank)

Q {BMW CCA Member #191509}
2006 E53 X5 4.4i (Sterling Gray) 12/05 mfg date <<~>> 97 740iL (Arctic Silver) 3/97 mfg date
99 540iT (Orient Blue) <<~>> 95 525IT (Alpine White)
91 735iL (Schwarz Black) <<~>> 85 325e (Bronzit)

Last edited by QSilver7; 01-10-2013 at 08:48 AM.
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