My car Die everytime I go to Car wash. Pls Help! - 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 04-03-2009, 12:13 PM
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My car Die everytime I go to Car wash. Pls Help!

I have a 95 325is and everytime i go to car wash, my car die in the middle of car wash and when i try to start the car, it won't stay on. it keep dying on me. and it takes hours for the car to start and run normal. do you guys know whats wrong with it? what do i need to do to make my car not die and don't start everytime i go to car wash? please help me. I really don't have a place to wash my own car. DIY links will help too.

thank you guys in advance,

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#2 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 12:21 PM
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Without wanting to sound condescending, wash your car with a bucket full of soap and water.

I won't take my car anywhere near a car wash because they all seem to scratch the paint.
Simple elbow grease does the trick.

Assuming your car runs fine all the rest of the time, then there must be water getting into the electrics when it's in the car wash.

Once again, wash it by hand and save some money.

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#3 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 06:00 PM
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Does it ever shut off in the rain?
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#4 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 07:39 PM
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No, it doesn't shut off in the rain. only when when i go to car wash

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#5 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajm325is View Post
No, it doesn't shut off in the rain. only when when i go to car wash
Ok now we are getting somewhere,the reason why your car is shuting off is because at a car wash water gets forced into the engine bay from under the car to,if your choosing to have the full wash then probably something electrical is getting wet so check under the car and see if anything looks electrical and cover it,if thats not the case try and accually cause the problem on a day you dont have to go out and wet the cars hood with your hose and run the engine see what gets wet or even do it with the hood open by lightly spraying the motor dont drench it though and then youll know the problem and you can either cover it or fix it.I think its your ignition coil or distributor cap thats getting wet so check that to.
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#6 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 08:49 PM
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ok i'll do that. I have a M50 engine, I think I don't have a distributor, and my ignition coils are fully covered by the engine plastic cover

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#7 (permalink) Old 04-04-2009, 12:57 AM
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best bet is to hand wash it and see what happens if you wet the engine bay alittle bit and if nothing happens I would,nt worry to much,Ive never liked those car washes I always go to the spray booth or just do it myself,theres to many electronics on the 325is models,I know because I own a 1990 325is .
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#8 (permalink) Old 04-04-2009, 01:35 AM
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Yeah I'll just hand wash it. thanks for you time..

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#9 (permalink) Old 04-04-2009, 01:40 AM
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This same problem has happened to a lot of e36's. Check the cover for the ECU. It's on the firewall of the car behind the positive terminal in the engine bay. The cover is held on by 2 clips I believe. Water can get into that piece, and you would have to wait a while for the connection to dry out.



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#10 (permalink) Old 04-04-2009, 03:28 PM
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Here is how you fix this. Walk up to your cars passenger side of the windshield. Look at the corner of the windshield. There is a plastic cowling that runs the length of your windshield underneath where your wind shield wipers are mounted. Look at the corner of that piece. If it is broken or brittle replace it. You can do it in your drive way it only takes 5 mins. You should go ahead and buy both pieces of the cowling, I think they are less than $50 for the pair from the stealership. There are some plastic screws holding them in. You'll need to remove your windshield wipers as well.
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#11 (permalink) Old 04-04-2009, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thekid View Post
Here is how you fix this. Walk up to your cars passenger side of the windshield. Look at the corner of the windshield. There is a plastic cowling that runs the length of your windshield underneath where your wind shield wipers are mounted. Look at the corner of that piece. If it is broken or brittle replace it. You can do it in your drive way it only takes 5 mins. You should go ahead and buy both pieces of the cowling, I think they are less than $50 for the pair from the stealership. There are some plastic screws holding them in. You'll need to remove your windshield wipers as well.
Very good advice^....................

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#12 (permalink) Old 04-05-2009, 05:27 PM
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You need to turn the engine off when in the wash,the cooling fan will draw water into the engine compartment and spray it everywhere.
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#13 (permalink) Old 04-06-2009, 09:10 AM
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Listen, I have the same problem from time to time. What happens is that water gets under that plastic cover that you think protects the coils, the water goes down to the spak plugs hole and stays there. last time that happened to me I had to blow some high pressure air into the holes and dry it with a blow dryer. The tip of the coils also need to be blow dried cause they get wet also. The best thing is to replace the rubber that's under the plastic cover cause after a while the heat makes it become hard and it can't do the job it's suppose to do.
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#14 (permalink) Old 04-06-2009, 03:37 PM
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no...Behind your Passenger side firewall/glovebox area the water sprays in at an angle from the auto wash so water floods the DME holding area and disables the DME temporarily-or until it dries out.

you need to open it up (see picture below, where I have it marked with the yellow arrows) and take out the DME, un-hook it, and wrap it in a zip lock baggy, before washing your car again at the auto wash. If you just washed your car and it dies when you open up the DME compartment it will be flooded with soapy water. When it happened to me and my mechanic came over and opened it up, a gallon of soapy water literally gushed out of there. I was like WTF!




or you can handwash it.

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#15 (permalink) Old 04-06-2009, 10:20 PM
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The plastic bag if sealed will not allow the DME to work right? How do you connect it? So you push the car into and out of the car wash? Or you don't seal the bag and allow the connections where the water still gets in the bag therefore making the bag useless? I don't think you thought this one through del.

The water gets in by the brittle/broken cowling at the passenger side corner... which is directly over the DME. If brittle the pressure from the car wash finishes off the cowling and it lets... soapy water into the DME. Not some funky angle at the car wash. This has fixed many members issues with the car washes.

You can safely wash your BMW in a car wash... if the cowling is whole.
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