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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 04-05-2006, 01:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
NZA
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Problems, Problems, Problems

let me start buy sayin hello to every1 on here.

now i recently bought a 1995 bmw 325i w/ 140k miles. It has no modifications done to it, but it is a pain in the arse. I haven't got the slightest clue about cars so im lookin fa ya help ere...i got a lot of problems/questions about this car...

1) Car Shaking: While at a standstill such as a traffic light the car shakes alot, seems to be coming solely from underneatch the drivers side but im not sure. Now i took it to the bmw specialist and he told me it was the vacum hoses, he changed them, did a tune up and all that good stuff and the car was now working fine. BUT 5 days later it started shaking again! wtf could be the problem ?

2) Overheating: AFter i got it back from the specialist a few days the car started to overheat, and b/c im an idiot who dunno nuffin about cars i kept driving onli for it to stop on the interstate..lol...newayz after i let it cool down n added some water i manged to get back home. First of all does coolant last longer than plain old water? I must have added like 3 gallons of water. From my calculations i can drive roughly 4/5 hours before it overheats on water. I havent had a chance to buy coolant. Secondly when i bought the car the onli problem with it was the radiator. The mechanic installed a new one, but im not sure if he installed new hoses and stuff. I dont see a leak as far as i can tell.

3) White Smoke: On Monday monring i started up the car and it was all smooth, i got about 1mile down the road and i noticed a lot of white smoke coming from the exhaust. 2 seconds later it stopped and no more white smoke for the rest of the day. This morning same thing happened onli this time not as much smoke came out. To tell u the truth u cud barely see it from the side mirrors. 2 seconds later it stopped! Now what cud be the problem with this? It onli seems to happen in the morning when the car is cold, and its onli happened twice to me.

4) Washer Fluid Low: Where the fuck is the washer fluid located? it says i have low washer fluid on the little thing in the dash board underneatch the headunt. And shud i fill up just regualr water or add a special mix of something?

5) Catching Speed: When i take off 6/10 times the car seems to take 2 seconds to go from 0-10mph. I see the rpms go up but the car seems like its 1.5seconds slower...lol..Wassup with that? The car runs fine after it hits 15mphs, its really smooth and gets to 110mph pretty quickly and smooth..

6) Car Lowering: I wanna lower the car a little to give it a more of a sporty look w/o adding body kits and all that ish. Do i need ne speical equipemtn to do this? or can i just go to my mechanic and have it lowered? What wud be an ideal amount to lower it w/o scratch the bumper on bumps and stuff?

FUCK!! I KNEW I SHUD HAVE STUCK WITH THE BLOODY CAMRY..

NE HELP WUD BE MUCH APPRECIATED
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Old 04-05-2006, 03:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Ne1... Help A Fellow Beema Owner Out...
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Old 04-05-2006, 03:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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1) ill let someone else help you with this.

2) Sure you dotn see any leaks? Sound sliek you might have a leak somewhere. Check all hoses. Upper and lower radiator hoses aswell.

3) It's not consistent? Sounds like a cold start problem. Maybe some oil in your exhaust system? Kind of weird. Usually white smoke is a sign of a blown headgasket. Yikes. But since you onyl have this problem in the cold I wouldnt expct it to be your HG. Have you chekced your oil lately? Is it good? Any coolant/oil mixing occuring? The scary part about this is that you seem to have burning oil and disappearign coolant problems at the sametime. Check your oil!

4) Washer fluid is in yoru engine bay. Just fill it with water. It's the white tank located on the front of the engine bay passenger side. Should say 2.5L on it. Open, fill with water. See washerfluid lwo disappear next time you start up the car.

5) Is your car automatic? or 5 speed?

6) To lower a car you need lowering springs to replace your stock springs. You culd jsut buy springs nad replace them but the resutl would be dangerous. You should replace your stock strut/shocks with aftermarket strut/shocks which would be stiffer. This would give you an ideal upgrade in a lower stance aswell increase handling capability. A good and common setup is to go with H&R Sport springs with Bilstein Sport shocks or Koni Single adjustabe shocks. You could spend more money on a coilover kit but I think your goal is a lwoered car and not increased handling. Look for a drop int he 1-1.25" range. H&R sports give this drop. Eibach Pro-kits give this drop aswell but many people have complained that the pro-kit did nto give as good of a drop in ride height. H&R Race and Eibach Sportlines will give a more agressive drop and would increase camber, increase tire wear, and would defintely require new shocks.
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Old 04-05-2006, 03:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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First off hello and welcome

Q
1) Car Shaking: While at a standstill such as a traffic light the car shakes alot, seems to be coming solely from underneatch the drivers side but im not sure. Now i took it to the bmw specialist and he told me it was the vacum hoses, he changed them, did a tune up and all that good stuff and the car was now working fine. BUT 5 days later it started shaking again! wtf could be the problem ?
A:
could be your engine mounts are shot if its shaking like that at idle. vacum system wouldnt really cause something like this. it would cause irratic idle but not actually shaking the car.
Q:
2) Overheating: AFter i got it back from the specialist a few days the car started to overheat, and b/c im an idiot who dunno nuffin about cars i kept driving onli for it to stop on the interstate..lol...newayz after i let it cool down n added some water i manged to get back home. First of all does coolant last longer than plain old water? I must have added like 3 gallons of water. From my calculations i can drive roughly 4/5 hours before it overheats on water. I havent had a chance to buy coolant. Secondly when i bought the car the onli problem with it was the radiator. The mechanic installed a new one, but im not sure if he installed new hoses and stuff. I dont see a leak as far as i can tell.
A:
could be any number of things with the coolant system, i would probably say the system could have air in it,, im actually doubting the honesty of the specialist,
Q:
3) White Smoke: On Monday monring i started up the car and it was all smooth, i got about 1mile down the road and i noticed a lot of white smoke coming from the exhaust. 2 seconds later it stopped and no more white smoke for the rest of the day. This morning same thing happened onli this time not as much smoke came out. To tell u the truth u cud barely see it from the side mirrors. 2 seconds later it stopped! Now what cud be the problem with this? It onli seems to happen in the morning when the car is cold, and its onli happened twice to me.
A:
hmm white smoke? or is it just cold? does it go away at all? im wondering if you may have blown your headgasket.. which would explain problem number 2 a bit its a pretty expensive fix.
Q:
4) Washer Fluid Low: Where the fuck is the washer fluid located? it says i have low washer fluid on the little thing in the dash board underneatch the headunt. And shud i fill up just regualr water or add a special mix of something?
A:
its located in the front passenger side of the engine bay, its a white tank.
Q:
5) Catching Speed: When i take off 6/10 times the car seems to take 2 seconds to go from 0-10mph. I see the rpms go up but the car seems like its 1.5seconds slower...lol..Wassup with that? The car runs fine after it hits 15mphs, its really smooth and gets to 110mph pretty quickly and smooth..
A:
this problem could be also numerous things.. i think you need a new mechanic first before you check this.. ill put a final answer at the bottom
Q:
6) Car Lowering: I wanna lower the car a little to give it a more of a sporty look w/o adding body kits and all that ish. Do i need ne speical equipemtn to do this? or can i just go to my mechanic and have it lowered? What wud be an ideal amount to lower it w/o scratch the bumper on bumps and stuff?
A:
at this point i would not bother with this upgrading stuff




what i think needs to happen here is for you to go back to your mechanic and get an idea of what is wrong, than if you think he/shes giving you a disshonestly hard time i would go and find someone else to give you a second opinion, from what ive read above you have a few big problems and if the headgasket is gone you have a big BIG problem on your hands... good luck
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Old 04-05-2006, 04:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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@furious...after a couple of seconds the white smoke went away. i have a feeling its just the cold weather from the past couple of days as it onli seems to be happening in the morning for a few seconds. it runs fine the rest of the day. I think i ment irratic idle, it feels like drivers seat is bumping up and down, if that makes ne sense. how much do these head gaskets normally cost? and is there a way i can check myself to see if its broken? As for the mechanic, i dunno my dad takes his merc there all the time and they seem to do a good job. im gonna try this new bmw specialsit straight outta germany next week, get his opinion on these situations.

@m power...the car is an automatic. What shud i be looking for when i chek my oil?
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Old 04-05-2006, 04:14 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Yep the smoke sounds like condensation. Mine does it most of the time in the morning. Second vote for checking the motor mounts. if your seat is shaking. As for the transmission hesitation, it sounds like the fluid is low. Might crawl under and check for leaks. It doesn't have a dipstick, makes it harder to check.
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Old 04-05-2006, 04:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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aite people thnxs for the help, more feedback is appreciated...
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Old 04-05-2006, 04:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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ah i wasnt aware its a auto.. ok so were clear that the smoke is just condensation, i figured it was but it sounded kinda odd with the relation to problem 2.. the auto tranny could be accounting for the hesitation in speed.
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Old 04-05-2006, 04:58 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I would have said motor mounts to but was all "WTF?" when he said vacuum hoses. hehe.

At so many miles I wonder if your tranny fluid has ever been changed. Check that out.

The headgasket is about $250-$300 but the labor on it will push you into the 1k range.
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Old 04-05-2006, 05:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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^fuck me....im a straving college student..lol..god i hope thas not the case...

i think imma take my car to the quick lube tomorrow and get the tranny/engine/and whatever other fluids there are chnaged...
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Old 04-05-2006, 05:39 PM   #11 (permalink)
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We're all starving college students, I feel your pain.
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Old 04-05-2006, 11:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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when a car overheats, what is the thing that can get stuffed up? head gasket or the head? since u seem to be having cooling problems, big ones, as most ppl do when the first buy an e36, it could be that its somehow caused other things to go wrong!
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Old 04-06-2006, 07:42 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ///M Power
We're all starving college students, I feel your pain.

I'm not a college student, nor starving. I still don't have a lot of money, though.
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Old 04-06-2006, 10:48 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NZA
1) Car Shaking: While at a standstill such as a traffic light the car shakes alot, seems to be coming solely from underneatch the drivers side but im not sure. Now i took it to the bmw specialist and he told me it was the vacum hoses, he changed them, did a tune up and all that good stuff and the car was now working fine. BUT 5 days later it started shaking again! wtf could be the problem ?
This was happening to me, when I took a look under the bonnet it seemed that part of the black air in-take pipe (like a banjo) had come away. It was also ripped in one place. Simply changed this ant the car stopped shaking.
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Old 04-06-2006, 12:13 PM   #15 (permalink)
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^roughly where is that located under the hood?
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