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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 05-17-2014, 02:25 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Gas Cap Won't Come Off/P0174 Engine Code

Year: 2005
Model: 325i
Miles: 64,000

I haven't had any problems with this car until about a week ago. The 'Service Engine Soon' light came on after pulling out of McDonalds. (I'm not sure if this is relevant but I accidentally accelerated a little bit while in park right before pulling out.) After driving it for about 5-6 miles and it still being on, I thought maybe I got some bad gas, and filled up my tank. Another day of driving later, no luck. I finally went to Auto Zone and it spit out the code: "P0174 Fuel System Too Lean (Bank 2)". From the reading I've done, it can be a total of 5-6 things. It can't be a fuel filter (although they should be changed at around 60k miles) because it would spit out both the 174 and 171 code, which it didn't. It's only in bank 2. I was planning on taking it to the BMW dealership (which is 100 miles away) in hopes that they have an idea of what I need to get fixed, but I now don't have the gas to get up there because the gas cap won't come off. I've turned the car completely off and had both my dad and I try to take it off. It's like the gas tank is pressurized and it's sucking the gas cap on. So now, I can't get gas, and I have a P0174 code. I'm starting to lean more towards a faulty gas cap because before the check engine light came on, I had a "check gas cap" on my dash for about 5 minutes even though my gas cap was perfectly secured.

A few notes: The gas cap has been a little harder to take off than usual sometimes, but I didn't think anything of it. I just drove over 1000 miles from NC to KS about 17 days ago. I've also been putting in different gas. (93 in NC. 91 here.)

Anybody have any idea what the hell is going on because I'm getting pissed off.

Thanks,
Jordan.

Last edited by jordandhale; 05-17-2014 at 02:44 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-17-2014, 02:30 PM
SamxK SamxK is offline
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Ahh the notorious E46 lean code. The fuel cap can definitely be a cause. Try replacing that first. If the code doesn't go away after a a minute, then you should consider looking at some posts here about vacuum leaks. Vacuum leaks cause the lean code.
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Old 05-17-2014, 02:32 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SamxK View Post
Ahh the notorious E46 lean code. The fuel cap can definitely be a cause. Try replacing that first. If the code doesn't go away after a a minute, then you should consider looking at some posts here about vacuum leaks. Vacuum leaks cause the lean code.
Thanks for the input, but I can't even get the gas cap to come off now. It's like the gas tank is now extremely pressurized and it's sucking the gas cap on.

Last edited by jordandhale; 05-17-2014 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 05-17-2014, 02:55 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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Clogged fuel filter or Fuel Tank Breather valve.
The valve will give you a different code so perhaps is not the culprit.

I would start by changing the fuel filter.
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Old 05-17-2014, 06:46 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Originally Posted by frvega View Post
Clogged fuel filter or Fuel Tank Breather valve.
The valve will give you a different code so perhaps is not the culprit.

I would start by changing the fuel filter.
Wouldn't both banks be affected if it was a clogged fuel filter?
For example, it would give me both the P0171 and P0174 codes instead of just P0174?
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Old 05-17-2014, 07:26 PM
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TacoBuster TacoBuster is offline
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Sounds like a vac. Leak to me..


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Old 05-17-2014, 10:43 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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1st - Have you clear the code?

2nd - There is a "Filler cap pressure relief valve" very unlikely but possible to go bad.
Be careful since there might be lots of pressure pushing the cap. Always be extra careful when working with the fuel system.

3rd - One more thing, I know it sounds silly, but have you check if there is something stuck in between?
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:53 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frvega View Post
1st - Have you clear the code?

2nd - There is a "Filler cap pressure relief valve" very unlikely but possible to go bad.
Be careful since there might be lots of pressure pushing the cap. Always be extra careful when working with the fuel system.

3rd - One more thing, I know it sounds silly, but have you check if there is something stuck in between?
Update: It finally came off after my friend tried extremely hard to twist it off. Nothing was in between it. It seems like it was just stuck. Still have a Check Engine light though.

Last edited by jordandhale; 05-18-2014 at 11:56 PM.
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Old 05-18-2014, 11:31 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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Did you clear the code?
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Old 05-18-2014, 11:55 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Originally Posted by frvega View Post
Did you clear the code?
I'm not sure if Auto Zone cleared it when they scanned it or not. Is there a way I can turn the SES light off without a scanner and see if it comes back on?
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Old 05-19-2014, 05:02 AM
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If the underlying problem is fixed and you go through several drive cycles, I've heard the SES light will go out on its own, but it takes quite a while. Best to clear it and scan again after some driving.

There are cheap scanners out there. A great tool to have - the wiki has some info on it in the engine section:

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Old 05-19-2014, 01:24 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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Not that I know

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Old 05-19-2014, 08:25 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Update: I took it to a mechanic and he cleared the code and the SAS light went off. He drove it around for a little bit and said that it's taking more fuel than it should and not accelerating as fast as it should. I also heard a whistling sound when he accelerated in park. Every time too. He said it was probably a fuel pump. A different mechanic said it was probably a fuel injector problem.
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Old 05-19-2014, 10:24 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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Just drive it for a week and see if the code returns.
My car do the whistling too, I have spend so much money trying to figured out, but no luck. So don't go crazy trying to fix everything at once or you'll never figure out what is wrong in the first place.
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Old 05-20-2014, 02:36 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frvega View Post
Just drive it for a week and see if the code returns.
My car do the whistling too, I have spend so much money trying to figured out, but no luck. So don't go crazy trying to fix everything at once or you'll never figure out what is wrong in the first place.
I filled up my tank yesterday evening and also put some seafoam in there. The SAS light came back on last night. Back to square one. Definitely not bad gas though.

Last edited by jordandhale; 05-20-2014 at 02:38 PM.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:07 AM
frvega frvega is offline
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You'll need to check your Adjusting Unit (DISA) I know that part have a flap that will control the air flow on your manifold, if not working properly when flapping to the 02 bank on the manifold it might be throwing the code. The other one could be a bad bank 2 O2 sensor.
I would also check on the sparkplugs and see in what condition they are.
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Last edited by frvega; 05-21-2014 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 05-22-2014, 03:36 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Took it to a mechanic and he said it was an air intake leak. Thanks, guys.
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Old 05-22-2014, 04:17 PM
frvega frvega is offline
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Air intake leak where?
Let us know so we can also learn from this.
Air intake leak that only affects bank 2, nice.
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Last edited by frvega; 05-22-2014 at 04:19 PM.
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Old 05-22-2014, 04:19 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frvega View Post
Air intake leak where?
He said it was underneath the engine.
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Old 05-25-2014, 08:07 PM
markab markab is offline
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i'm having the same issues did a smoke test and nothing came up, except that they found a hose that wasn't clamped on correct, so they corrected that and clear the codes that was a month ago, while driving yesterday the light came on then went off, and after 15 minutes it came back on and wont go out, it is annoying because I need an emission test and it wont pass with that service engine light on...
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Old 05-25-2014, 08:09 PM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Originally Posted by markab View Post
i'm having the same issues did a smoke test and nothing came up, except that they found a hose that wasn't clamped on correct, so they corrected that and clear the codes that was a month ago, while driving yesterday the light came on then went off, and after 15 minutes it came back on and wont go out, it is annoying because I need an emission test and it wont pass with that service engine light on...
You can always temporarily get someone with a scanner to remove the code so you can pass your emission test.
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Old 05-25-2014, 08:25 PM
SpielMitMir SpielMitMir is offline
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Any new updates on this issue?
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Old 05-26-2014, 04:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markab View Post
i'm having the same issues did a smoke test and nothing came up, except that they found a hose that wasn't clamped on correct, so they corrected that and clear the codes that was a month ago, while driving yesterday the light came on then went off, and after 15 minutes it came back on and wont go out, it is annoying because I need an emission test and it wont pass with that service engine light on...
Quote:
Originally Posted by jordandhale View Post
You can always temporarily get someone with a scanner to remove the code so you can pass your emission test.
Note that if you clear codes you clear the readiness status for the 8 or so monitors as well which can take several days of driving for all of them to set again. Can't pass emissions in NC without at least 7 of 8 set. You can pass with the error code present as long as it hasn't tripped the light - at least you can in NC.
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Old 05-26-2014, 11:25 AM
jordandhale jordandhale is offline
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Originally Posted by SpielMitMir View Post
Any new updates on this issue?
For the stuck on gas cap, it turned out someone that recently filled up my tank just put it back on way too tight. I had it taken off by a very strong friend with a lot of muscle. Hahah.

The Check Engine light was caused by a p0174 (Fuel System Too Lean Bank 2) code. I took it to a mechanic, and it turned out that the air intake hose underneath the engine had a huge tear in it. He was actually able to stick his hand inside the middle of the hose. I'm getting a new hose installed on Tuesday, and that should solve my problem.
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Old 05-26-2014, 11:53 AM
SpielMitMir SpielMitMir is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jordandhale View Post
For the stuck on gas cap, it turned out someone that recently filled up my tank just put it back on way too tight. I had it taken off by a very strong friend with a lot of muscle. Hahah.

The Check Engine light was caused by a p0174 (Fuel System Too Lean Bank 2) code. I took it to a mechanic, and it turned out that the air intake hose underneath the engine had a huge tear in it. He was actually able to stick his hand inside the middle of the hose. I'm getting a new hose installed on Tuesday, and that should solve my problem.
Good to hear! Glad you were able to get that cap off and locate the cause of Too Lean Code. Thanks for the update!
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