Help me, my E36 316i huge power loss..! - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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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#1 (permalink) Old 08-07-2009, 10:06 PM
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Help me, my E36 316i huge power loss..!

1995 M reg E36 316i compact with around 138K on it due service around about now 6k after last one.
I was out last week and after i pulled up for half hour and as soon as we jumped back in the car was just completely different to drive.
It was rather restraint and slow, no pull/torque in it at all.
and my exhaust tone as become rather quiet and dull yet on idle sounds blowy even though its still at normal idle or around a 1000 rpm.
I have noticed a flat spot to also apear on occasion or when you try to make it hurry up a little
a few things ive noticed is a rather thin coat of oil around the oil sump and a rattle from the rear end when driving.
if somebody could possibly point me in the right direction to checking whats wrong with it, it would me most appreciable as its started to do my nut in now and i miss it.
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#2 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 06:34 AM
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Ok now the condition has deteriorated...
I started the car so my dad could have a listen, fired up first go.
He said rev it so i did and it got to about 4k rpm and then started to stutter and blip.
then when i stopped revving it, it just stuttered and died.
Then after 5 minutes my dad starts it and it just wont start and idle you have to have your foot on the gas to start it.
any ideas? please i am in desperate need of help.
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#3 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 12:15 PM
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Start with checking your cat. converter and your fuel filter.

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#4 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 01:41 PM
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You may also have a bad fuel pump as well. The rattle like Canadian Wrath mentioned could potentially be a bad catalytic converter.

Could you possibly go into greater detail what the rattling sounds like?
Is it far back near the rear axle?
Do you hear it when you accelerate/shift gears?
Do you hear it more when you go over bumps in the road?
Is it a thud or is it a clank?
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#5 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 01:57 PM
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Just replaced fuel filter as that was my initial thought that the engine wasn't getting enough fuel.
but no improvement.
the symptoms of the car is that at 3k rpm it loses all pulling power and revs struggle to go up and accelerate.
It feels like its fighting against something or being held back.
could there be some sort of blockage or anything.
and the rattle sounds like a spray can rattle, only heard when hitting bumps or you slam a door or boot lid rather hard.
not all to sure if this is related.
and the oil leak looks like its from my crank case wich i tightened and cleaned up earlier.
I managed to get my engine to idle now by adjusting my accelerator cable.
it idles at around 900/1000 rpm.
but still no power from 3000rpm onwards.
any other ideas?
much appreciated so far thanks

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#6 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 02:04 PM
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It's possible that you might be suffering from a vacuum leak. I would check all of the hoses and see if they're leaking or if there are any noticeable holes.

With the rattling, I would check the sway bar end links first. They tend to wear out and you will hear a clicking/clanking when you go over bumps. Those are an easy/common repair part on BMW's and I would look there first.
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#7 (permalink) Old 08-08-2009, 10:36 PM
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Im going to remove all the intake manifold soon and check around clean my ICV while i am there.
does anybody have any drawings of important hoses/places to look for any leaks?
Be a great help but im still not convinced its something like that it has trouble revving, like its being held back or no fuel/air is getting to my cylinders.
more ideas and solutions would be much appreciated.
thanks ever so much people

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#8 (permalink) Old 08-09-2009, 07:21 AM
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does anybody know how i can test my cat?
it actualy seems to be welded to my down pipe wich i can see being a bastard but i found this forum post that seems the same problem as mine...

http://www.bimmerwerkz.com/forum/3-s...ine-60103.html

cheers

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#9 (permalink) Old 08-09-2009, 09:06 AM
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just take it to a reputable exhaust shop and they can tell you if your cat is plugged or not also for your intake and vacuum lines spray some wd-40 around them while the engine is running. if your revs go up you have a leak

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#10 (permalink) Old 08-09-2009, 04:03 PM
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Ok today i got quite alot done.
i removed all my intake manifold cleaned my icv and had to replace one of the hoses from my icv to my intake Pipe.
I didnt go to the dealers, instead i replaced it with section of 3/4 inch radiator hose.
Looks stronger and much better then the original with the splits and only cost me 3.30 for a meter.
i cleaned everything there that need it and also checked for leaks and luckily none.
but as i was taking my intake apart (so stubborn).
i had to palm it vigarously and as i did i could hear the rattle/clunking sound.
Had my dad do it while i was under the car and Guess what, its my cat.
is it normal for a cat to collapse and cause this much deteration in performance?
its still drivable but there is no torque, and My sportex cat back system at 2500 revs loses its bellow and sounds as a standard exhaust.
So change the cat and see if its the culprit?
thinking about cutting the cat out and putting some piping in place and de-catting it as a cheap test to see if its realy the culprit.
any advice on wether or not to do this?

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#11 (permalink) Old 08-09-2009, 09:05 PM
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Do you have an O2 sensor in the cat or beyond the cat? If you do it could potentially cause a loss in performance because the O2 sensor is going to read high levels and accordingly the DME will adjust engine timing and fuel load.
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#12 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 02:04 AM
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Good point but decat pipes are widely available for the 318ti and other car's.
I assumed if it is my cat that has internaly collapsed and is caused a blockage that there would be a build up of emissions internally and the Lambda sensor would be reading a high level and adjusting it accordingly causing my loss of power...
how about if i unplug my lambda? would this run the car normal?
Im stuck because the cat is 101 for a new one and i dont realy have the money to just hand out so if the cat isnt the problem then i would be screwed.
Thanks guys

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#13 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 09:02 AM
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If you have emissions inspection in the UK and you remove the cat, you will not pass.
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#14 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 04:08 PM
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Yeah i know but ive got a few friend run garages local to me where i always take my cars for the MoT and they'l pass it for me no problem.
Fibre glass in the muffler usualy works a treat at MoT time.
But i will be replacing the cat as soon as i can afford too, MoT due in march should have it all done by then...
Soooo the big question is, to get my car running back to normal again, could i decat it?
or would it just upset another balance and make my car worse?
lets face it i cant go above 40mph at the moment so i cant drive it to work wich means im bussing it for a long time until i can afford to put another cat on or i could decat it for now wich will cost me 15.
Just looking for advice...

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#15 (permalink) Old 08-11-2009, 09:56 PM
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You can just cut your cat off and replace it with a piece of pipe. Just get a new cat before your emissions test

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