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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 01-13-2012, 02:15 AM
amandafaithmile amandafaithmile is offline
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Location: Trinity texas
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1998 540i
Question Starts but won't stay running!

I have a 1998 540i with several issues. But to cut to the chase my car over the past few days significantly lost power. I noticed for a while now that oil seemed to be leaking from the top of the motor. I had found the culprit was the oil cap. I replaced it and now the car just died on me. I tried to crank it and it spits and sputters as if it were out of gas. Wouldn't stay running long enough to get it out of the road and was forced to push it. I bought it at a fantastic price and put some work into it. I can say it performed like it should until now. No smoke out of the tail pipe or water in the oil so its safe to say the heads are fine. The car had been slightly wrecked by the previous owners and the radiator had been fixed it has over heated a few times on me but I immediately pulled and allowed it to cool. That turned out to be the radiator cap. The MAF sensor is not fitting snugly and kinda taped. Could it be allowing it to suck air? Could it be the oil leaked from the cap fouling out the plugs? Never noticed a miss before. Any help would be.appreciated greatly. I also should let you know that I am a 24yr old DIY FEMALE with some mechanic "not much" knowledge but eager to learn anything about this.THNX
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  #2  
Old 01-13-2012, 04:42 AM
timarnold timarnold is offline
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Location: Maryland
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 676
Mein Auto: 2003 bmw 525i
Just a guess

It could very well be the MAF sensor reading one value for air flow & due to air leaks, the engine receiving a different amount of air. If you unplug the maf sensor, it should allow the engine to receive a default value into the ECU & the engine will run.

The other possibility would be one of the Cam Position Sensors not working, possibly because of oil contamination in the connector plug. Not likely but easy to check.
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  #3  
Old 01-13-2012, 05:03 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Location: MA
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 4,179
Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
Have you pulled the top covers off the valve covers to see if there was any oil in the plug wells?
Is the CEL on?
Have you cleaned the idle air control valve?
Try Tim's suggestion, but check all of the air ducts between the MAF and engine for cracks first.
If it's sucking extra air it's not going to run properly.
When you disconnect the MAF the CEL will come on but should turn itself off after you reconnect it and start the engine 3 or 4 times.
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  #4  
Old 01-13-2012, 09:53 PM
amandafaithmile amandafaithmile is offline
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Location: Trinity texas
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1998 540i
I was told that my plugs may have fouled out so I worked on getting them out, flustered and had someone pull me to a shop. I live in Trinity, tx and no one around will touch it. Work is slow in these parts so I don't have funds to do it properly. As backwoods as it sounds I need to rig it IF its not the plugs. I paid 4000 for it and it has 147,000 miles on it. 4,000of them I put on there. Other than the radiator leak (minor) after JB weld the car runs like a champ. The interior is flawless with its leather and wood grain. I can say its stressful to deal with without a man around but I do try. I will make sure to mention the ideas y'all posted and I appreciate the help. Thank you so very much
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  #5  
Old 01-14-2012, 06:49 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Location: MA
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 4,179
Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
While your under the hood take the Idle Air Control valve out and clean it with anything that will desolve carbon.
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  #6  
Old 01-14-2012, 04:32 PM
amandafaithmile amandafaithmile is offline
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Location: Trinity texas
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: 1998 540i
It sure was a sight to see a petite young woman doing what a man should know how to do LOL. Will be Monday before it can be looked at. Keep the ideas Colin and I'll sure let y'all know the outcome!
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  #7  
Old 07-23-2015, 07:37 AM
Francisco_rsd Francisco_rsd is offline
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Location: florida
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 528i
Need help with my 528i
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