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Stoneman1027
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my 01 530i back in June and i still cant pass the emissions test. I had the oil separator valve replaced and i had to get a new valve cover gasket. The check engine light is off and the paper that i keep getting at the emissions place is saying the evap emission and secondary air arnt passing. My mechanic did a forced test on those 2 things and they passed but the car didnt accept that it was a "forced test", it needs to complete the drive cycle. that was over 3000 miles ago. he gave me a paper with the drive cycle on it but i cant do it all on public roads. Does anybody know how else to fix it?
 

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So let me get this right, you have driven the car 3000 miles after your mechanic tested it, you don't have a CEL but it doesn't pass the evap and secondary tests, right?
Am I missing something?
The secondary air blower and it's valve should come on when you start the engine from cold. Does that happen?
The evap circuit gets tested almost everytime you finish driving the car if it meets certain requirements. If it doesn't pass the CEL should come on, same for the secondary air system.
I guess you could probably drive the car at night when the lack of a current inspection sticker wouldn't be seen, to see if you can get it to pass.
Maybe find a different mechanic or bring it to BMW.
 

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+1, something is not right. Is you car yielding any codes now? If not, then you should be good to go. If there are no codes, then you should pass inspection. Both of these issues would yield a code. So get your codes read and report back.
 

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Stoneman1027
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
its not showing any codes and the check engine light is not on. when i first got it and it failed i took it to bmw and had it looked at and they said the oil separator valve was bad and the valve cover gasket needed to be replaced. i got them both fixed and took it back to the emissions testing place and it still failed. i called my mechanic and he said it has to go through the drive cycle and to drive it a few days and it should be fine. that was in august. ive been to the emission place around 7 or 8 times since then and it shows the same thing every time. my mechanic plugged up a computer to it that checks the system and it showed on his computer that my car hadent run the test on the secondary air and the evap emissions. he gave me a paper with a drive cycle and told me to do that but i cant do it all on the roads because it things like start the car cold and drive 25 for 1 min. then stop for 30 secs then go to 55 for so long then stop for 10 secs. there is a whole list of things on it. i cant do that on public roads.
 

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First, you might want to call the TDEC mechanic at 1-866-329-9632 and ask them for advice. You might want to ask them for a waiver if you're having trouble getting your car registered because it failed emissions testing.

Second, what did the people at the testing station tell you is the reason that the car failed? Did they give you a printout?
 

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You don't need to follow the drive cycle as printed, just driving it for a few weeks will complete the testing.
Following the written instructions will make it pass quicker.
There is something wrong with your car that is not being addressed.
BMW or the mechanic should have know that the oil separator and the valve cover gasket has nothing to do with either the secondary air system or the evap emission.
Both of these circuits are not related.
Find someone who knows how these systems work.
 

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Stoneman1027
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
i called the state mechanic and asked him what should i do and he said he doesnt work on them he just gives me advice. but all he said was if my mechanic gave me my car back without it able to pass then he didnt do his job. the printout said secondary air injection and evaporative emission system. bmw told me that the bad oil separator and the bad valve cover gasket was why it was failing but i took it to my mechanic told me that both of them dont have to do with why it was failing but he looked and they both did need to be replaced so he did. could my main computer be messed up and maybe not running the test?
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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I got my 01 530i back in June and i still cant pass the emissions test ... it needs to complete the drive cycle. that was over 3000 miles ago.
How long is the failed-inspection grace period in Tennessee anyway?

he gave me a paper with a drive cycle and told me to do that but i cant do it all on the roads
You're in Chattanooga for heaven's sake!

Even people in the middle of Los Angeles find a way to run the FTP drive cycle (see below):
- You must do it twice.
- It says don't go over 3000 rpm, but I don't go over 2700 rpm when I do it.
- You have to start each run from cold. In other words, you can't just turn the car off then back on and do it again. The car MUST be cold. The test requires an engine temp. between 12°c and 60°c which is 53°f and 140°f.
- if you mess up on part of it, you don't have to go back to the beginning. For instance, sometimes trying to find a place you can go 20-30 MPH is tough. I got about 2:50 in a few times until I finally was able to go the whole 3:15. The same went for the 40-60 MPH section. I attempted a few times before I was able to get through the whole 15 minutes.
- Having an OBDII code reader that can read individual readiness flags is a BIG help.

Lastly, if you're in Los Angeles, it can be difficult to find a place to do this. Here's my suggestion (along with a map):

For the 20-30 MPH section, I used Vista Del Mar (the beach road west of LAX) going north from Imperial to Culver (indicated in red). There isn't much traffic and people don't really care if you're only going 25. Stay to the right and you're golden. If you continue onto Culver (indicated in blue) you can hop on the 90 fwy east to do the 40-60 MPH section (indicated in green). Take the 90 to the 405 south. By the time I got to Western I was done with the 15 minutes of 40-60 MPH. Mind you, this was about 7:00am on a Saturday morning, but I did the same thing on a Thursday afternoon and was done with the 15 minute stretch by the Long Beach Airport. Hopefully this will help some of you Angelenos who are trying to set the codes!

if my mechanic gave me my car back without it able to pass then he didnt do his job.
Yep. Sort of.

I don't go to mechanics, so I don't know if they bother driving long enough to set all the registers for those states that fail you for incomplete drive cycles (of which California is one).

the printout said secondary air injection and evaporative emission system.
Time to bone up on both:
SAS:
- How to maintain (1) (2) (3) & replace (1) & troubleshoot the BMW E39 SAS SAP valve secondary air pump system (1) (2) (3) (4) & an SAP valve group buy (1)

EVAP:
- When will "CHECK FILLER CAP" EVAP fault codes go away on their own (1)

In the thread above, it took a few days of normal driving for me; but eventually the drive cycle (see QSilver7 chart below) was triggered:
- How to better understand the key EPA federal test procedure (FTP) concept of the BMW SES "drive cycle" (1)


could my main computer be messed up and maybe not running the test?
Why not just run the same test I did in this thread?
- Experimental results removing the fuel filler cap (aka gas cap) on the BMW E39 with resulting OBDII DTC fault and drive cycle reset (1) (2)

That is, pull off your gas cap.


Then, just drive a few days.

You should eventually see a P0455 (large leak). If you see that, then you know your computer is working and that the drive cycle got to that point.


Or, even simpler.

Buy that $22 tester above from Amazon, and simply see if/when your data registers switch from "NOT READY" to "READY".
 

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Jim is correct that the mechanics should have known that the problems they fixed had nothing to do with the problems that cause your car to fail the emissions test. You need a mechanic who knows that, but maybe the mechanic was fixing the VCG and CCV because they needed to be fixed.

Does the test report say that the SAP and EVAP systems were not ready? Can you type exactly what the report says or maybe scan a copy of the report?

Could you register the car? When you talked to the TDEC mechanic, did you discuss a waiver so you can register the car? I'm pretty sure that you spent more on repairs than the amount required to get a waiver.
 

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How long is the failed-inspection grace period in Tennessee anyway?
30 days. BTW only Memphis, the Chattnooga area, and the Nashville area have I/M programs, at least for now. No statewide testing in Tennessee,

You're in Chattanooga for heaven's sake!

Even people in the middle of Los Angeles find a way to run the FTP drive cycle...
Try driving North on US27. Drive 50 mph. By the time you get close to Dayton, you would probably have don ethe 15 minutes at 50 mph. So coast down to a stop and sit there a couple of minutes. You may have to do this twice because the EVAP system is only evaluated every other time the conditions are correct.

For the SAP, let the car sit overnight. Start it and let it idle for at least 2 minutes 13 seconds.
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Stoneman1027
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
i live in a neighborhood with a few stop signs ant when i get to the main road there is 3 red lights until i get to a road where i can do the 20-30 mph part. if i have to stop a few times my my engine might be warm by then. once i do the 20-30 part do i do the 40-60 as soon as that 3:15 is upon the first section? the road i will do the first test on leads to the interstate and i can probably stay between maybe 55 to close to 60 for 15 mins. i have one of the scanner things i got from auto zone for my other car but it was a obd2 so it will fit my bmw also. im going to try to upload a picture of the failed emissions paper. if it doesnt work ill type it word for word
 

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Stoneman, you do not need to follow the drive cycle, if you have driven your car for a few weeks it will complete it if nothing is wrong.
Good to see you have a scan tool, here's what I would do.
1) Check to see if you have any other stored codes in the DME? Maybe something else is wrong with the car preventing it from completing the tests.
2) Can you hear the secondary air pump running when you start the car in the morning? If not either the fuse, relay, of pump motor is bad.

Once you answer the above we'll go on to checking the solenoid that supplies vacuum to the secondary air valve and then the evap emission circuit.
 

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BMW CCA 69606
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No codes and no CEL.........does CEL come on in key position 2 BEFORE you start the car?
If CEL does indeed work, it sounds like an internal DME problem.
Disconnect the battery overnight, reconnect in the morning to reboot the DME.
Was car ever jump started?

Paul S
BMW CCA 69606
 

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Stoneman1027
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yeah it comes on when i turn the key part way but once I start the car it goes off. If I disconnect the battery do I have to do anything special? I have a friend who tried that with his car and it wouldnt start back up and the dealer said it is a theft protection device that makes it do that. I got it in June and I haven't had to get it jumped. I dont know about the previous owner if he a to have it jumped or not.

Sent from my C771 using Bimmer
 

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I've disconnected the battery on my car a few times and on friends E39's when doing repairs to them. All of the started up after re-connecting the battery.
Onen the trunk and wait 16 min for the trunk light to go out, then disconnect the negative lead.
You will need to reset your clock, the trip miles and MPG displays will reset back to 0.
 

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Stoneman, you do not need to follow the drive cycle, if you have driven your car for a few weeks it will complete it if nothing is wrong.
Good to see you have a scan tool, here's what I would do.
1) Check to see if you have any other stored codes in the DME? Maybe something else is wrong with the car preventing it from completing the tests.
2) Can you hear the secondary air pump running when you start the car in the morning? If not either the fuse, relay, of pump motor is bad.

Once you answer the above we'll go on to checking the solenoid that supplies vacuum to the secondary air valve and then the evap emission circuit.
Also check the integrity of your vacuum hose that leads to the SAP check valve. This short hose often cracks due to high heat exposure (it sits above the exhaust manifold). If this cracks, the valve will not actuate when the vacuum pump initiates, and will not allow the air pushed by the SAP to reach the exhaust system. However, any failure of the SAP system to properly function generates a code. If you are not getting a code, something strange is happening.

The simplest easiest thing to do is to open the hood and listen for the air pump activation on a cold start (it must be a COLD start).
1. If you hear the pump (located in front of the front passenger tire) activate, then the problem is with the check valve not activating. Check to see if there is a vacuum leak or if the vacuum pump is working.
2. If you don't hear the pump, then the pump may be dead. It could be a fuse or relay but it is more often caused by a failed check valve which allows exhaust to backflow into the pump, where moisture condenses and kills the pump. In this case, replacement of both pump and check valve are SOP.
 

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Yeah it comes on when i turn the key part way but once I start the car it goes off. If I disconnect the battery do I have to do anything special? I have a friend who tried that with his car and it wouldnt start back up and the dealer said it is a theft protection device that makes it do that. I got it in June and I haven't had to get it jumped. I dont know about the previous owner if he a to have it jumped or not.

Sent from my C771 using Bimmer
If your pump activates but then does not run for the normal 1-2 minutes on a cold start, then there is your problem. This suggests a problem with the electrical circuit for the SAP. Sorry but electrical issues are not my forte.
 

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Fudman, he said the CEL comes on when the key is turned but then goes off after the car is started.
He hasn't told us if the pump runs yet.
This is a pretty easy circuit to troubleshoot.
 
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