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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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Old 08-14-2012, 08:43 AM
Psquare75 Psquare75 is offline
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Location: Assonet, MA
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Mein Auto: 93 325i
Unhappy 93 325i No Start when Cold.

Hi. Name is Paul. Longtime lurker, first time poster.

Here's one for you gurus.

Car: 93 325i, manual. 206k miles. No engine mods.

Ran excellent.. until last Thursday.
Started out as a longer than normal cranking time, but engine would fire on second or third attempt. When warm, car starts up immediately, as normal.

Sitting overnight, car has a long crank time (Think of a diesel in the winter with bad glow plugs). Again, once started, runs perfect, and when turned off and on (say running into a convenience store) it starts immediately, as normal. Over the weekend, toyed with it a bit. Hard to track down cold start issues, as once it starts, it will always start for a few hours.

However, it has gotten to the point where it'd take five or six attempts when cold.. To the point I am fearful of cooking the starter.

This morning, it finally wouldn't start at all even with several long cranks. I popped open the throttle elbow and sprayed some starting fluid. Car fired immediately and stayed running. I turned it off immediately, restarted, and it was fine.

Obviously I don't want to be driving around with a can of starting fluid. I already had a lawnmower like that.

Parts changed:

(I have an 80% complete parts car on the side that ran when parked in April).

Fuel pump fuse/relay/pump.. all check out - no difference.
ECT sensor for DME (new from other car) - no difference.
ICV > throttle body elbow hose (old one cracked, new on other car) - no difference.
throttle body elbow hose (old one cracked, new on other car) - no difference.
Plugs - boots (less than 1500mi on the other car) - no difference.
MAF (new on the other car) - no difference.

So rather than throw parts at this over and over, I'd like some opinions.
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