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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Its my daughters car. Got it used about a year ago and its a 99 BMW 323 automatic.

It runs fine 1/2 the time but the other half something goes wrong. It hesitates like its out of gas but then eventually (after 3-5 seconds) it goes fine. Then at a stop it happens again on acceleration. The odd thing is it will only do this once in awhile but if you turn it off and then drive it again later it can be fine.

Some background, my daughter ran it completely out of gas once but she said the problem happened at least once before this incident. She calls it a "shaking" and one time she said the car would only go 35 mph no matter what. (but I wonder if she had it in 3rd instead of drive).

I'm going to change the plugs, air filter, fuel filter and put in some fuel injection cleaner.
Any idea where the fuel filter is located ???

anything else I should check?
I want to eliminate the easy things before taking in to a shop.

thanks in advance for any help.


PS. The car has about 85k miles and I'm not sure whats been done on it before. The service engine light is on but not a "check engine light".
I assume this service eng light is just for oil change intervals or something like that triggered by mileage.
All fluilds are fine and she runs 87 octane fuel.
 

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Keeping it surreal
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A faulty cam-position sensor could give symptoms like you describe.... so could a clogged fuel filter or dirty injectors. Go to an AutoZone and ask them to put their diagnostic code reader on it (they usually do this for free) and see what turns up....this is not *100 %* reliable, but it`s a good starting point. BMW`s really require better fuel than the piss she`s been using....tell her to move up to a mid-grade gas (89 or better octane).

Regards,
Bob
 

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The fuel filter is located under the car, just below the front door. It's a Silver color cylindrical unit with 3 rubber hoses attached to it. I think it might be good to change your fuel filter and get you injectors cleaned first. If the problem persists then look into other things like the CAM sensors.

BMW recommends that you use fuel between 91 - 98 Octane.
 

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Ubergeek
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Fuel filter location (and replacement DIY) can be found in the wiki.

As vampo said, you should be running premium.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Took it to autozone and got these error codes
P0300,P0301,P0302, P0303, P1624 , P0441
I know the 300 series are cylinder misifiring issues. Could be as simple as sparkplugs.

P1624, notsure what that is. Maybe coolant thermostat.

P0441, evaporative emission control system - incorrect purge flow

The person at autozone said the gascap wasn't sealed good enough at some point. Not sure if this code would remain in memory if this was a problem 4-5 tanks ago.

I'm thinking P0441 is from the gas cap issue.

So if I replace the plugs, air filter, O2 sensor it may solve all of this.

Agree?
 

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Whenever you have multiple codes, clear them then see what code pops up first.
 

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If you are replacing all this, you migt as well put the fuel filter as well, and maybe get your injectors cleaned.

But as Crowz said, best is to clear the error codes and run the vehicle till you get the problem again. Then check the codes. Misfiring can be may things. Do you know which Cylinder(s) are misfiring. Then dealer can check (through the diagnostics) for you if its a sensor issue (most times).
 

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Ubergeek
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well there the problem. you HAVE TO USE 91.
That's likely not the cause of the codes. You don't have to use 91.

(It's just self-defeating not to, because you'll likely lose fuel economy, offsetting the cost savings.. not to mention your car retarding timing and going slower)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So I took the car to a BMW mechanic (not dealer because there's not one nearby) and he gave me an estimate. It needs plugs, 2 O2 sensors, fuel filter, air filter, brake sensor wire, thermostat replaced and I believe an oil change.
$1100.00 for everything.

Does this sound high?
I realize I can do this myself and save $400-$500 from labor but its something I really don't want to mess with. Have too many other things on my plate.
 
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