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3-Series (E21, E30) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1975-1983 and 1984-1991 line. Specific models: BMW 315, BMW 316, BMW 318, BMW 318i, BMW 320/4, BMW 320i, BMW 320/6, BMW 323i, BMW 320i. E30 Family models include: BMW 325e, BMW 325i, BMW 325is, BMW 325ix.

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Old 04-14-2006, 12:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Newbie (help ) '87 325is warm idle/stall problem

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Running bettter (Mass airflow meter)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I'm new here.
reposting this thread to this E30 tech forum I think.:

I thought I posted to the right forum but I dont know where this ended up.
I'll have to read the instructions. My first post.


Anyway worked on it till midnight.
Running better.
Mass airflow meter definitly a problem.
Had the problem with idle going up and down.
banged on it, juggle it and the car sputters.
Tore it apart sprayed it out with electronic cleaner and now idles much better.
I also straitened the crooked sensor filaments, scary.
disconnected battery 10 min, cleared errror.
reving high but steady. (at 1500rpm)
occasional check engine light at low rpms once warmed up, but goes away at high revs.

I cant figure out how to read the ODB codes???
I have a ODBC II reader for my ford, is there an adaptor for ODB I?
I think its a Motronics 1.1 ??
I read a post saying turn the key to run, dont start, wait and the light should flash out the code.???
The red check engine light stayed on the yellow "Check" just blinked 32 times.
What the hell does that mean? ha ha

The onboard computer seems dead, I saw it on once the other day.
Radio doesnt work.
Reminents of and old alarm, I ripped some of it out, but need to trace the brain and wiring. I'm sure its could cause some problems.
I know Ive got other elecrical issues to work out, but Im just focusing on the motor/sensors/ECU right now.

The car hauls butt when this idle problem is gone.

Thanks to all for any tips.
I'll keep reading other threads, FAQ's

Cheers,
Richard
Delphin Metalic Man (ha ha)
I love this car
-----------------------------------

Hello to all,

Awesome site, just signed up.
First attempt at a post/thread.
Sorry if I screw up.
Just bought an '87 325is and Love it.
"Delphin Metalic" (aka Dolphin Gray) sweeeet
Im embaressed to state the miles.
Lets just say over 200k, but with many new/rebuilt parts.
A few issues still, lots of work to do.
Cant wait to continue working on it tonight.

One warm idle issue that keeps me from driving it anywhere yet.
I'll try what Ive read so far tonight, but if anyone has any more suggestions I'd love to get some more help.

Symptoms:
Runs great for 30 min.
then occasionally a light flashes on dash while downshifting.
(heel and toe of course, ha ha)
I think its the check engine light.
Then stop it at a light and the revs start oscilating or it stalls.
Check engine light comes on full time.
Almost got rearended when I tried to take off after this happend.
Engine still restarts.
MPG needle thing below the tack (that I usually would ignore) oscillates from one extreme to the other along with the rpms. (0-40 mpg I think)
Nice show of dancing needles but I can barely drive it off the road at this point.
Wait several minutes mess around with fuses etc, eventually it starts idles fine and runs fine, but check engine light stays on.

I think it goes out eventually.

I just got the Haynes manual last night.
Autozone rules.

Read all the faqs and threads hear.
I'll try the following tonight:
clean ICV insides. (carb cleaner then WD-40)
clean ICV relays (Electronic contact cleaner)
check for shorts/ dirty contacts (I'll hace to trace theese with the manual etc)
check dip stick seal for vacume leak (This is so freaky)
SI board batteries? (might wait on this adventure until I have to)

It has dinan chip I believe?
It has a new O2 sensor I think.
New Mass air flow meter is on the way.


I'll let you all know how it works out.

Cheers,
Richard
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Old 04-14-2006, 06:06 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Check your engine speed sensor, it's the gray connector below the starter, for a bad contact. This can cause a ton of hoaky stuff, sputtering, black smoke, stalling and a pause when you spike the gas while driving.

To check your engine codes on the 1.1 system, turn your key to the "on" position wait 3 seconds then count the flashes. Each code is shown by short flashes followed by a pause then then next code (if any). Keep reading untill they repeat.
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Old 04-14-2006, 06:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Smile

Excellent I'll try it out as soon as I get home from work, in about 1 hour
Clean it trace it look for problems shorts oxidation, loose contact etc.

I hadnt found this connector yet. It must be underneath the starter were I couldnt see it.
I'll review my Haynes manual too. With multimeter ready..

I tried the code check like someone else said last night.

The yellow "Check" light flashed but not the red "Check Engine" light it was on steady. The yellow one looked like it was just flashing at a constant rate?

Which light is supposed to flash the code?

Thanks again so so much for the help.

I cant wait to sort this problem out so I can do some driving with out the fear of motor dying at a critical moment.

Cheers,
Richard
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Old 04-14-2006, 11:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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That yellow light is a warning to bring your attention to "check" your warning panel above your rear view mirror, remedy these problems and it'll only show when you start the car untill you push the brake. By pushing the check button there you are telling the warning system that you acknowledge the problem and the flashing yellow light will go out. The red "check engine" light is the one that'll flash the engine codes after a few seconds with the key in the ON but not running position.
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Old 04-15-2006, 10:56 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Making progress :)

Thanks again.

Now I get it.
I think the yellow light is indicating brake lining warning which is the old crusty sensors, I can ignore for now.
I dont think I got the red flashing code because I checked it after the car had cooled down and the engine error was no longer present.
Next time it happens I'll try and retrieve the code.

I found the single pulse sensor up front which I think is both refference and speed sensor you mentioned, that I couldnt find by the starter? (Thanks Haynes)
Looks Ok wire boot,insulator is exposing colored wires but actual wire insulation looks OK. sprayed it with electronics cleaner, zip tied the wire harness that ran by the fan pully to the connector below diagnostics port, looked like it could rub. Cleaned out thos connectors as well.

I got replacement nuts for the air box that were missing. I think this was contributing to the problem, as I noticed it had rubber dampers on it, probably to prevent vibration of the sensors.
I also zip tied the connector plug to the box because I think ther is supposed to be a metal clip or plastic tabs that are missing so it could come loose.

I also found a vacume hose junction that looked loose and I tightent it up. It ran into the bottom of the intake manifold. I found this while looking for the speed sensor.

Anyway. last night about 11:00 I did another test drive for about an hour iand it seemed to run fine the whole time. It did flash the check engine light for a sec, then it went out but alll the time it ran fine. Also the idle started at 2000 and eventually dropped to 1500 then 1000 after each restart. I think I'm on the right track. I think its the mass airflow meter.


I also pulled the ECU opened the box and checked the chip part number.
Interesting. It looks like it was deffinitly never opened.
I think I have a new ECU and the stock chip.
I'll call Dinan to figure this out.
Motronics Bosh part number on ECU box
0-261-200-173
not
0-261-200-153 (as called out on Dinan instructions?)
Chip in ECU
1-267-355-705
Chip in hand (Dinan black anti static storage box)
1-267-355-367

Weird, I bet the owner replaced the ECU with a new one with differeent chip and sent the old on in as a core deposit with the friggin $200 dinan chip still in it. ha ha
Bummer for me.
I just wonder if the two chips I have are different is the one in the car now the wrong ECU?
Oh well I"ll need to hunt down the info some where. Do you know where to go for this info? Maybe call Motronics ha ha
Cheers for now,
Richard
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Old 04-15-2006, 06:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The yellow check lamp won't tell you about the brakes, there is another red lamp for that.

If you are in doubt replace your AFM, but I would advise changing out idle air motor, these cause unstable idle more than not.

The front one is your main crank sensor. The large data connector, round about 3-4 inches across the connector for the speed sensor is just below it, there are two so clean both and reconnect. Also check and see if your plug wires are good, there is a inductor pickup that is atached to the wire check to see if that connectors contacts are good.

Last edited by Starmavin; 04-15-2006 at 07:05 PM.
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Old 04-16-2006, 08:21 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Frustrating progress

Thsnks again.

Still working on it.

I think I understand the lights.

It was running pretty good so I tried to smog it and failed.
Need this to get new registration.
Guy said idle wouldnt stabilize so computer failed it.
Oh well back to the drawing board.

Previous owner recieved second rebuilt AFM yesterday.
Picked it up, installed it, looked great, but barely ran.
Every time I hit the gas it almost died.
Bummer sprayed more cleaner and WD-40 into old one and reinstalled.
Still runs great except for idle.

Checked both MAF's for variable resistance at plug on unit and at pins 7 and 12 at the motronics ECU connector. Resistance was lower at the ECU than at the unit. weird, but I'm not sure if its the same two leads at both ends.

It already has new ICV but maybe I should test it further.
Is the idle air motor inside the ICV unit or is this something else?

Cleaned both connectors below the data connector.
Checked inductor looked ok maybe I should look further.cant see any wires all seem to be in rubber.

Some of the plug wires seem to come off too easy, but look like there in good shape. Mayb need to replace these?
Matbe clean them up.

On other issues:
replaced lost bolt on airdam, used zip ties on broken mounting bracket. Now air dam is secure.

soldered cut horn wires, then horn works, but button on steering wheel sticks, so pulled fuse 7. Now I know why they probably cut it. ha ha
Will fix later or get new steering wheel.

discovers one of 4 clips missing on airbox, put a strap around it for now.

Hey thers what looks like a big capacitor near the aitbox, do you know what that is?
It was bouncing around loose so I tied it down, but not sure what it is.

Oh well happy easter to all.
Maybe the Easter Bunny will bring me a new Eiback suspention kit with bilsteins. ha ha

I feel like this is a right of passage to all new/old BMW owners.

Cheers,
Richard
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Old 04-16-2006, 11:55 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Replace your temp sensor. Everything you are saying is now pointing to it.
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Old 04-16-2006, 06:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Ah ha, found another problem like you said, temperature, looks interesting.

Checked resistance on temp sensor i think its ok
increasing as the car cools dowm.
112
145
167 ohms
Is this too low?
this is the brown plug in front of the blue plug right?
with one brown wire inside boot?


however the temp sending unit? right next to it
is missing the litttle metal retaining clip!!!
The blue connector with two wires orange with red stripe and orange I think, kinda dark in there and faded color.
This may be the problem.
Have to figure out where to get some of those clips.
maybe i can zip tie it for now.
Mybe it was coming loose when hot?
It reads open circut hot like its supposed to.
I'll re read all again once it cools off.

Maybe I'll go pick a temp sensor up while it cools off.
Not sure if any stores are open.

Cheers,
Richard
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Old 04-16-2006, 07:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I don't know the settings of your meter but I do know that ohms in the 300 range for the temp sensor are near ice cold temps. The temp sensor you need to check is the only one with two terminals.
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Old 04-19-2006, 03:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Took car to a good shop

I pick the car up from the shop this afternnoon.

Couldnt take it anymore.

turns out The TPS under the throttle body was out.

Not sure about the MAF yet.

I already did the Temp sensor.

As well as a few other shorts/vacume leaks etc.

There puting on new upper rear shock mounts, toasted.
Lug bolts. (lost wheel lock key ha ha)
New TPS, hard to get too without removing throttle body. (Let them do it...)
Used 14x6.5 BBS basket style rims (with used Dunlop 205-60-14) $550
Good deal I think, rims had polished lips and recent paint.
The ones I had were MIM not hub centric, and no adaptoer, hence vibration at 45-55 mph and 80+.
I'll go for 125 tonight.... scaaarryyy...
New brake hoses, (friggin expensive). should a got braided lines but oh well.
Theyll also glue one more loose vacume fitting into the throttle body so they dont leak. Nice trick.

Should be good to go for now.
$1000 total so far yikes.
I'll let you all know how it goes.

Thanks again for all the help.
I'm sure I'll be posting more soon.
This is only phase one.
I have one more credit card thats not maxed out yet ha ha

Cheers,
Richard
87 325is Delphin Metalic rules...
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Old 04-20-2006, 01:25 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Thumbs up LA Jolla Independent BMW service in San Diego rules!!!

Houston we have lift-off!!

Ahhhhhhhhh........

No vibrations.
Smooth idle

Test run last night up to 115mph no problems. B)

Carl Nelson and Chris at LA Jolla Independent BMW service in San Diego rule!!!

They rule!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !

I think I should buy these guys some pizzas for lunch.

My 325is went from an old rattle trap to fine example of german performance engeneering in 6 hours.

Thanks again to Starmavin for all the help as well.

Almost not sure what to do next.
Maybe just enjoy driving it for a while.



Cheers,
Richard
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