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E34 (1989 - 1995)

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  #1  
Old 02-10-2011, 03:13 AM
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Sending Unit,



Can a sending unit be cleaned/repaired.
My fuel gauge is reading just over 3/4 tank for the last 4 days (When the car is on that is) Doubt if it is the gauge Or must the sending unit just be replaced...

Thanks

EDIT

Hmm, Wander if a wire came loose ?? That thing has been pulled out twice recently. Tell ya what... How bout I check it first

In my defense, Northern New Jersey weather has been non-conducive to fixin on a car for many weeks. LOL
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Last edited by CarDriver; 02-10-2011 at 03:41 AM.
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  #2  
Old 02-10-2011, 03:43 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Yes, undoubtedly something got screwed up in the midst of you removing it recently. Stuff like this happens all the time...irritating, makes me think that my mechs are incompetent or the car is fragile.

Please see this article and save it somewhere for current and future use, its really great :

http://www.fileoffset.com/bmw/e34_sender_unit.php
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  #3  
Old 02-10-2011, 04:01 AM
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That write up was fantastic. Thanks!

Yeah, I am not a great believer in coincidence. That's why I was pretty sure it was the unit. LOL... Thanks again, That is very valuable information you shared

Fragile... yes indeed. And old, both me and the car. Hey, we live and learn :o)) As for the incontinence... No need for Depends here
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Last edited by CarDriver; 02-10-2011 at 05:54 AM.
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  #4  
Old 02-10-2011, 06:26 AM
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BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarDriver View Post
As for the incontinence... No need for Depends here
Yet
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Most problems are usually something simple !

Quote:
Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 200K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

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  #5  
Old 02-10-2011, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertobaggio20 View Post
Yes, undoubtedly something got screwed up in the midst of you removing it recently. Stuff like this happens all the time...irritating, makes me think that my mechs are incompetent or the car is fragile.

Please see this article and save it somewhere for current and future use, its really great :

http://www.fileoffset.com/bmw/e34_sender_unit.php
ohmy that link is awesome.

Thank you roberto
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  #6  
Old 02-10-2011, 08:54 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 95 E34 View Post
ohmy that link is awesome.

Thank you roberto
Yes, that dude really hit it out of the park there. I've posted this link before, glad I posted it again.
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  #7  
Old 02-11-2011, 07:01 PM
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Tomorrow morning I am going to Surgically remove the Sending unit with the care it deserves and dissect it. I will update this post with what I find and pictures. Wish me success :o))
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  #8  
Old 02-11-2011, 07:06 PM
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Yet
Can't argue with that one. Maybe I will be fortunate enough to kick it in my sleep the day before that ever happens.
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  #9  
Old 02-18-2011, 03:45 AM
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Weather had been too cold last week so I did not take out the sending unit. I did however go into the cargo area and thump on the cover plate a couple of times. the float dropped back down and it is working just fine now. Not the preferred method of repair so kids, don't try this at home. LOL...

I have done a fill-up since and it is working so far. I am not going to pull it out unless it gets stuck again witch would possibly mean a kink in one of the the guide wires
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  #10  
Old 02-18-2011, 05:20 AM
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BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
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Yeah, in this case (since you've pulled it a couple of times already), live by the old adage "If it aint broke, don't fix it".

Steve
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Most problems are usually something simple !

Quote:
Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 200K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

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  #11  
Old 02-18-2011, 08:49 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMR_LVR View Post
Yeah, in this case (since you've pulled it a couple of times already), live by the old adage "If it aint broke, don't fix it".

Steve
This is certainly the best policy when it comes to cars with our vintage.

Caveat : this does not apply to known failure items such as the crank sensor, the fuel pump, the three main relays (fuel pump, dme and o2 sensor), the fusible link(s), the fuel filter (wash out 1-2 times per year), and diesel FI cleaning of your fuel system (once every 3 months, and each time the fuel filter is washed out or changed) to keep your fuel injectors in good shape.

Last edited by robertobaggio20; 02-18-2011 at 09:06 AM.
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  #12  
Old 02-18-2011, 08:43 PM
ricks5series ricks5series is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertobaggio20 View Post
Yes, undoubtedly something got screwed up in the midst of you removing it recently. Stuff like this happens all the time...irritating, makes me think that my mechs are incompetent or the car is fragile.

Please see this article and save it somewhere for current and future use, its really great :

http://www.fileoffset.com/bmw/e34_sender_unit.php
I wish I had seen this when I had a no start situation. Didn't have the patience at the time (last year) and was towed to a BMW specialist. They replaced the fuel pump and filter for a cool $650. Got burned on this one.
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  #13  
Old 02-19-2011, 09:04 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Originally Posted by ricks5series View Post
I wish I had seen this when I had a no start situation. Didn't have the patience at the time (last year) and was towed to a BMW specialist. They replaced the fuel pump and filter for a cool $650. Got burned on this one.
Bro, at least you got a new pump and filter. But yea you burned yourself bad on this. What was the mistake you made here? Couldn't you have discussed the price of the repair with them, considering that the price of an oem fuel pump is around $150 retail? What did you fail to do at that point, that caused you to ok their quote? What were the circumstances involved?

Its a post mortem of sorts. We can all learn from the each other's experiences. At some point, we may need to use the services of mechanics...we need to be informed consumers so that we don't get ripped off.
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  #14  
Old 03-16-2011, 12:57 PM
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Update...

Sending unit is still working just fine. For any one that has not done so, save That link that Roberto posted up top. I saved it as a PDF file so I will always have it. If my sending unit acts up again I will need to dismantle it. But I have a feeling its good to go. :o))
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  #15  
Old 03-16-2011, 01:05 PM
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The dealer will take big bucks out of your pocket every time. Thank God for DIY.
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Last edited by CarDriver; 03-16-2011 at 11:37 PM.
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  #16  
Old 03-16-2011, 01:20 PM
JMI JMI is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertobaggio20 View Post
... considering that the price of an oem fuel pump is around $150 retail?

Its a post mortem of sorts. We can all learn from the each other's experiences. At some point, we may need to use the services of mechanics...we need to be informed consumers so that we don't get ripped off.
I may be replacing the sending unit in my car in the future. If I can find a fuel pump for $150 I may replace that also just as preventative maintenance. Where does one find those $150 (or there abouts) fuel pumps?

Thanks

Jim
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  #17  
Old 12-07-2012, 04:18 AM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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tried to fix my sending unit as mentioned in that link .... the thing with my sending unit was that if i put like 30 liters of fuel .. it would show me that its still almost empty ... when i fill up the whole tank .. it would show full .... so i thought i might as well try to clean those filaments .... did what the guy wrote in the link ... reached to the point where i should "Pull the very top off slowly and carefull. Once off you will see the real guts of the sender unit " ... the very top didnt seem pullable ... i tried and i tried .. but is seems sealed !! ... tried force with it .. still didnt work ... if i had tried any harder .. the plastic would have cracked ....
so i gave up ..... and to add to the problems .. not the float is now just stuck inside the plastic tube ... its stuck in the bottom ... so i made things worse ... aw well ... i should now search for a used sending unit to replace mine ...
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  #18  
Old 12-07-2012, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by David Arabiat View Post
tried to fix my sending unit as mentioned in that link .... the thing with my sending unit was that if i put like 30 liters of fuel .. it would show me that its still almost empty ... when i fill up the whole tank .. it would show full .... so i thought i might as well try to clean those filaments .... did what the guy wrote in the link ... reached to the point where i should "Pull the very top off slowly and carefull. Once off you will see the real guts of the sender unit " ... the very top didnt seem pullable ... i tried and i tried .. but is seems sealed !! ... tried force with it .. still didnt work ... if i had tried any harder .. the plastic would have cracked ....
so i gave up ..... and to add to the problems .. not the float is now just stuck inside the plastic tube ... its stuck in the bottom ... so i made things worse ... aw well ... i should now search for a used sending unit to replace mine ...
I had found some on ebay that were decently priced.
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  #19  
Old 12-07-2012, 08:07 AM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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Originally Posted by CarDriver View Post
I had found some on ebay that were decently priced.
can get one for 20 bucks ... but they dont guarantee they are in a working condition... gonna have to do alot of removing and installing .... gonna search for one in a couple of days ....
i dont know ... this float with filaments seems like a really unreliable design ...

when the car was 10 years younger , i remember saying to myself - wow , this sending unit is something special .. even when the car is parked uphill all week , it still shows the right amount of fuel ... now ( well before i opened it up and ruined it completely ) when i park it uphill , the fuel drops from 1/4 to absolutely empty

anyhow ... that E34 still puts a smile on my face .... most of the times
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  #20  
Old 12-07-2012, 08:18 AM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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from the pictures i've seen , the E34 and the E32 have the same sending unit .... can anyone confirm ?
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  #21  
Old 12-07-2012, 09:24 AM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Arabiat View Post
tried to fix my sending unit as mentioned in that link .... the thing with my sending unit was that if i put like 30 liters of fuel .. it would show me that its still almost empty ... when i fill up the whole tank .. it would show full .... so i thought i might as well try to clean those filaments .... did what the guy wrote in the link ... reached to the point where i should "Pull the very top off slowly and carefull. Once off you will see the real guts of the sender unit " ... the very top didnt seem pullable ... i tried and i tried .. but is seems sealed !! ... tried force with it .. still didnt work ... if i had tried any harder .. the plastic would have cracked ....
so i gave up ..... and to add to the problems .. not the float is now just stuck inside the plastic tube ... its stuck in the bottom ... so i made things worse ... aw well ... i should now search for a used sending unit to replace mine ...


Those instructions are perfect. I have used them, struggled with my sending unit and still feel that they were the best the author could possibly do.

Please try it again. If you need to, try cracking the top along the seal line....use a thin flat head screwdriver as a wedge. In any case, follow the instructions very strictly. You cannot fail. And you are about to buy a second unit so why not try again.
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  #22  
Old 12-07-2012, 12:13 PM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertobaggio20 View Post
Those instructions are perfect. I have used them, struggled with my sending unit and still feel that they were the best the author could possibly do.

Please try it again. If you need to, try cracking the top along the seal line....use a thin flat head screwdriver as a wedge. In any case, follow the instructions very strictly. You cannot fail. And you are about to buy a second unit so why not try again.
well ... i tried and i tried... i tried a flat screwdriver as a wedge... and i tried so hard that a piece of plastic just broke off the plastic cylinder... it hole in it now...

i dont know why the top was so stuck .. it was so finely sealed .. that i thought the whole thing was one piece of plastic .. had to come back to the computer , to check the site again to make sure this is how he did it ....
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  #23  
Old 12-17-2012, 10:48 AM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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after alot of effort , managed to open my sending unit .... the the two filaments are fine .. however , the 3rd wire ( the thicker one ) is a bit loose... could it be the reason why im getting a not so accurate reading of fuel ? i mean i look at it .. and its 40 liters .. then i look again .. its down to 20 ... and so on ...
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  #24  
Old 12-17-2012, 01:16 PM
robertobaggio20 robertobaggio20 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Arabiat View Post
after alot of effort , managed to open my sending unit .... the the two filaments are fine .. however , the 3rd wire ( the thicker one ) is a bit loose... could it be the reason why im getting a not so accurate reading of fuel ? i mean i look at it .. and its 40 liters .. then i look again .. its down to 20 ... and so on ...
If your filament wires are fine as you say, you won't be getting wrong readings.

Please post a picture of the wires and clearly indicate which one you mean.

Alternatively, refer to this :

http://www.fileoffset.com/bmw/e34_sender_unit.php

...and indicate which wire you are referring to.


rgds,
Roberto
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  #25  
Old 12-17-2012, 10:27 PM
David Arabiat David Arabiat is offline
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the guide wire isn't tight at all ....
the two filament wires look tight ..this is the picture from that site ....
if i have the time and strength , i will disassemble mine and take a picture ...

i have disassembled it like 5 times aready ... getting tired of it :-P
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