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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 06-28-2012, 06:01 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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? Timing chains.... Interference engine???

Hello I have a 2002 325i for approx a year, every so often I would have sporadic miss firing but if I cut the car off and restart at times it would no longer miss fire and other times after I start driving it the miss firing would stop. For approx 6 mos I would hear a sound like a pulley was bad.....about two months ago the fan belt broke. Because I'm a single woman and have been taken advantage of many times, I ordered the fan tools and changed the belt and the fan belt pulley, but I continued to here the sound, as if barrens had gone bad in a pulley. And the sporadic miss firing continued, well one morning after I had driven to a department store and got in the car, when I started the car the entire car shock and a puff Of white smoke came out of the tail pipe. I stopped the car checked the oil an check the radiator fluid cause it kind of smelled like antifreeze....I waited a while....the car started smoked a lil.....but would not drive faster than approx 45 mph. I drove it 16 miles until I got it home, the only gauge that was abnormal was the rpm which was really high but it would not accelerate.....I did not attempt to drive it for approx 2 days, the tried to start it but it will not start. No loud noises, just want start. Had a garage to come look at it the error codes where miss fire codes, but he said it sounded like my timing chain and that I have two chains with an interference motor and the cost to repair would be way over 2000 grand without really looking at the car. Just standing over it and placing the computer on it. Help!!!!! Is the motor a interference motor cause everything I've found says no and could it be the timing CHAINS? I have approx 128,000 miles on the car....
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  #2  
Old 06-28-2012, 06:13 PM
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It is very possible you have a bad oil separator and that has fouled your plugs. If they are fouled that bad (I have seen this very thing before) it will run like crapola.

You can see the progression of this in the below linked thread. I have learned a LOT since then and no longer find the CVV to be all that bad of a repair. Funny to look back at what I didn't know 4 years ago. WOW, I was an idiot.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...hlight=aumurph

To the OP, I travel to LA all the time for work, I could bring tools and do the repair for you if you like, do it all the time.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:26 PM
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OP, trust Smolck, he is *rarely* (if ever) mistaken about these things. BMWs do not have timing chain problems (they typically go 250+K miles with no problems), but the CVVs are notorious for failing (they ALL do, eventually) and causing problems like you`re experiencing. These cars have GREAT engines that run pretty much forever, it`s just all the crap accessories bolted onto them that fail.
Good luck !
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
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OP, trust Smolck, he is *rarely* (if ever) mistaken about these things.
Thanks Bob-O. Of course now that you said this, I'll be wrong.

OP, one question. The "fan pulley" as you call it is bolted to the water pump. When it failed did you overheat the car?
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:32 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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Cvv???

Thanks for your reply..but what is CVV?? And could it be the timing chains and I had the spark plugs changed during this time and would it only cause sporadic miss firing? If they are wet then it should consistently run poorly right? Now it will not start.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smencer View Post
Thanks for your reply..but what is CVV?? And could it be the timing chains and I had the spark plugs changed during this time and would it only cause sporadic miss firing? If they are wet then it should consistently run poorly right? Now it will not start.
CVV = Crank Case Vent Valve (aka Oil Separator) it is BMW's glorified version of a PCV valve. It COULD be anything. But timing chain failures are rare and I have never heard of one failing (and I fix a LOT of these cars) If the CVV failed after the spark plug change or even before it, it would foul new plugs in short order.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:37 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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Yes it over heated but I immediately pulled over on side of the hwy.....maybe drove it five feet literally......but after I put the belt on and changed the tensioner pulley I drove it without problems for approx a month then one morning what I explained aboved
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smencer View Post
Yes it over heated but I immediately pulled over on side of the hwy.....maybe drove it five feet literally......but after I put the belt on and changed the tensioner pulley I drove it without problems for approx a month then one morning what I explained aboved
Then I'm sticking with CVV issue. If it was in the red for more than 2-3 minutes I could see an issue with a blown headgasket, but typically those don't cause misfires. Do you have the ability to pull a couple of your spark plugs and check them for oil?
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:40 PM
Soupnutz Soupnutz is offline
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Don't know for sure, but I would think that just due to the fact they used a chain instead of a belt that it's an interference motor. Technically, being a straight 6 theres only one chain, but depends on how you look at it. Being DOHC, theres one chain from the crank to one cam and another chain between the two cams. Chains rarely ever fail, but it is possible a tensioner could have failed causing PTV issues, you would have heard that though. I've never torn down one of these engines but I've torn down a few ford modular engines. Smolck could be right, sounds like a possible blown head gasket also, you ever verify if there was any oil in the coolant or vice versa?
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smencer View Post
Thanks for your reply..but what is CVV?? And could it be the timing chains and I had the spark plugs changed during this time and would it only cause sporadic miss firing? If they are wet then it should consistently run poorly right? Now it will not start.
One thing at a time....

Did the car overheat ?

Does it have a history of overheating ?

Like I said in my previous post, timing chains do not go bad on these engines.

"CVV"= Crankcase Ventilation Valve....an overly complex device that replaced the old-fashioned (and simple) PCV valve. When they fail, instead of returning excess oil back into the oil pan, it gets misdirected into the intake system, where it ends up on the plugs. It also causes sporadic smoking, and poor performance.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:44 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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No oil in the coolant......I could check the spark plugs tomorrow, but remember I'm a woman it my take me a lil longer to do it but I can....if oil is on the spark plugs does that means that's it's the CVV?
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smencer View Post
if oil is on the spark plugs does that means that's it's the CVV?
9 times out of 10 it is indeed. I mean, it is pretty simple. Your car needs fuel and spark to fire. If it isn't getting one of them or either of them, it won't start. Plugs coated in oil won't fire = no spark.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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  #13  
Old 06-28-2012, 06:48 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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Nope the temp gauge only went to hot when the fan
Belt broke.....it has a history of miss firing randomly and inconsistently....the smoke ONLY happened the last day it ran...only once and not again....just the initial start when the entire car was shaking....
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:49 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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Gotcha!!! Thanks !!! I'll check them tomorrow and post what I found.....how often do you come to Louisiana ?
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smencer View Post
Nope the temp gauge only went to hot when the fan
Belt broke.....it has a history of miss firing randomly and inconsistently....the smoke ONLY happened the last day it ran...only once and not again....just the initial start when the entire car was shaking....
Yea, all symptoms I have heard and seen before with failed CVV's. I could be wrong, but I would bet a lot of money on the CVV before I'd bet on a bad timing chain.

Quote:
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how often do you come to Louisiana ?
At least once a month. Typically New Orleans and Baton Rouge.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....

Last edited by smolck; 06-28-2012 at 06:51 PM.
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  #16  
Old 06-28-2012, 06:50 PM
bigugly fab bigugly fab is offline
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technically they ARE an interference motor- but normally have no symptoms like that except.....


when they are timed incorrectly (im not joking how often this happens, and how many shops/customers bring me mistimed engines)
they are "money shifted" (mechanically over revved from a missed shift (like going from 4th to 5th, but you stick it in 3rd and over rev the engine)
something literally fails.... broken cam/gears/chain/vanos/sprocket/etc.....


these guys are on the right track, sounds like whoever came over and looked at it, doesnt have a clue on what he's actually looking at

lets get someone who knows these engines to take a peek at it.....


BTW, as the check engine light been on? the CCV's normally at least give you lean B1/B2 faults before they die completely and make the car run terrible-- or worse-- blow the intake manifold apart
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:54 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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Yea the check engine light would come on whenever it mis-fired but b/c it didn't miss fire all the time the check engine light would go off the next day on its own and did that the entire time.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:58 PM
Smencer Smencer is offline
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smolck I'll get back with you tomorrow.... Thanks Sooo much guys.....I have been jacked so much with my previous vehicles the repairs on these cars are too costlyand Unfortunatly some ppl use that known knowledge as a gain. And rape you...
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  #19  
Old 06-28-2012, 08:32 PM
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catso catso is offline
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Quote:
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Yea the check engine light would come on whenever it mis-fired but b/c it didn't miss fire all the time the check engine light would go off the next day on its own and did that the entire time.
You still probably have a fault code or two stored in the OBD-II system. Why don't you have them read and post them. That can help with the diagnostic process.
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