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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 08-04-2004, 09:29 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I have had "check engine" light on and off couple times before. This time, it has been on for 100 miles. I recently brought my car, 1996 328i, to a shop to replace radiator tank and they did check on the code. The fault is due to Cat failure. The guy at the shop said it will eventually go bad. But my question is, HOW LONG DO I HAVE? DOES ANYONE HAVE THE SAME PROBLEM NOW OR BEFORE?

Manufacturer's warranty is 8 yrs or 80,000. used

I just want to get some info and ideas for what's coming ahead of me. How much it will cost me if I need to change. I know Catalytic converter is expensive. Can it be done by me w/o any special tools?
Thanks. B)
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Old 08-04-2004, 11:07 AM   #2 (permalink)
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You'd need a welder to do it right. But you could use a hack saw to cut it out and use clamps to hold it in without much drama.

If you don't smell rotten eggs when you really get on the gas then the cat isn't bad and it could just be an O2 sesor.
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Old 08-04-2004, 01:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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you dont need cataylst converter. Lot of people gutt their cats to get better flow.
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Old 08-04-2004, 01:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Will sound hella loud, and you will not pass emissions
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The engine check lighet disappeared. This is my argument on what happened.
Quite often I have to travel for business with my bimmer. When I am on the way, I put gas at BP Station because it is convenient on the way and easy to spot. By the way, I am in midwest. Everytime after I put BP 93 gas, I get the check engine light, and then I put Shell, which I normally put in town, the check engine disappear after about 200 miles or less. Wierd!!!!! Anyway, it's only my speculation, but I won't put BP anymore. I assume my Cat is okay. No smell. No sound.
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:35 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by ghettozn@Aug 4 2004, 02:17 PM
Will sound hella loud, and you will not pass emissions
I've cut out my cats and instead of them I inserted twin resonators. No changes in sound at all.
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Old 08-17-2004, 02:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by ghettozn@Aug 4 2004, 03:17 PM
Will sound hella loud, and you will not pass emissions
50% wrong.
You will not pass emisions = correct. The muffler is what "muffles" the exhaust noise, the catalic converter dosn't play a part in this. Why do people make that mistake ALL OF THE TIME?

Since you think the cause is the gasoline you put in it... Don't use that gasoline anymore. You may also want to replace the fuel filter now since you have put some bad gas in it a few times. (it's a 23$ part at bavauto.com, easy fix, you can do it yourself if you have jacks) Not really nessicary though.

Are you sure your post-cat O2 sensor is ok? That's the only way the car knows there's something is wrong with the cat, the 2nd O2 sensor.


BTW, When the check engine light comes on... Do what it says and go to a mechanic. If you dont, you can cause further damage depending on what the failure is.
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Old 08-18-2004, 04:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for your info. bitcore
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Old 08-18-2004, 04:53 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hmmm.....Yea tak it to a mech and let em harge you 90$ for what someone can tell you here...look..next time its on....go to Auto Zone...get em to pull the code then come back here...mine goes on and off sometimes but hasnt effected my ride...I beleive its an O2 or bad washer in my exhaust...
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Old 08-30-2004, 08:11 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by bitcore+Aug 17 2004, 03:07 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (bitcore @ Aug 17 2004, 03:07 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-ghettozn@Aug 4 2004, 03:17 PM
Will sound hella loud, and you will not pass emissions
50% wrong.
You will not pass emisions = correct. The muffler is what "muffles" the exhaust noise, the catalic converter dosn't play a part in this. Why do people make that mistake ALL OF THE TIME?
[/b][/quote]
What I hear is that there is a 2500 rpm drone that makes highway trips unbearable with the cats removed. The sound comes through the floorboard, not out the rear pipes.
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:08 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by bitcore+Aug 17 2004, 03:07 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (bitcore @ Aug 17 2004, 03:07 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin-ghettozn@Aug 4 2004, 03:17 PM
Will sound hella loud, and you will not pass emissions
50% wrong.
You will not pass emisions = correct. The muffler is what "muffles" the exhaust noise, the catalic converter dosn't play a part in this. Why do people make that mistake ALL OF THE TIME?

Since you think the cause is the gasoline you put in it... Don't use that gasoline anymore. You may also want to replace the fuel filter now since you have put some bad gas in it a few times. (it's a 23$ part at bavauto.com, easy fix, you can do it yourself if you have jacks) Not really nessicary though.

Are you sure your post-cat O2 sensor is ok? That's the only way the car knows there's something is wrong with the cat, the 2nd O2 sensor.


BTW, When the check engine light comes on... Do what it says and go to a mechanic. If you dont, you can cause further damage depending on what the failure is. [/b][/quote]
Dude,
I have read some of your posting the last couple of days and you are a veritable fountain of misinformation!!!!!

The worst part is you are so arrogant that you deign to "score" people's posts with a grade of 0-100 percent.

So here is a fact for you: the catalytic converter, because of the tremendous heat generated within it die to the chemical reaction that occurs is constructed of extremely heavy walled metal. It is also completelyfilled with a honeycomb like structure, done so as to maximixe the surface area for the exhaust gases to react with the rare metals that are plated onto this honeycomb structure. All of this adds up to a considerable amount of sound pressure attenuation. (otherwise known as damping or muffling). It is not a muffler but it does significantly impact the amount and TONE (resonant frequency) of the exhaust.

As to the next point.... clearly you are speaking from a position of never having done anything if your advice is to go run to a mechanic. Buy a code reader for a 100 bucks or so. Then do you own anlaysis. I dont think everyone can or even should endeavcor to repair their own vehicles, but whether people do or dont, knowing what is going on with their vehicles can often minimize the "raping and pilaging" by the dealer or "mechanic"

so do me and everyone else a favor... stop giving out all the free "advice" that is misleading people and causing them to spend money unnecesarily.

If you want to hear yourself speak go stand in front of the mirror. People like you are the reason that yahoo has a block function on their boards.
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Old 08-31-2004, 12:45 PM   #12 (permalink)
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autozone will read your code for free? i didnt even know they did that
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Old 08-31-2004, 02:06 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by okczy21@Aug 31 2004, 01:25 PM
autozone will read your code for free? i didnt even know they did that
they can pull most but not all of the codes. Te common problem codes O2 sensor and the like they can pull without a problem. But some of the rarer... more rare? codes they can not pull. This is also true of the expensive snap-on readers as well, and the 100 dollar code reader reffered to by nycbmw325is. It's not a bad thing to have because it will read most of the codes that you will get. However, if it doens't pull a code, then keep in mind that there are codes that those readers can not pull. The only code reader that I know of that gets all of the codes is the insanley expensive BMW reader, which is a couple of G's (US)...
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