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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 08-28-2004, 11:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Anyone know why my car does not start as quickly as b4? Instead I have to hold the key turned for longer than usual for it to go...?
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Old 08-29-2004, 12:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
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battery or alternator!
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Old 08-29-2004, 12:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I have the same issue of slow starting, and my alternator is in need of replacing. See if you can get it tested at any auto parts store. Good luck!
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Old 08-29-2004, 12:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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More common causes:
Insufficent voltage to starter motor (IE: dieing or uncharged battery)
Dieing or bad starter motor
spark plugs
dirty injectors

Possible causes:
changed oil withen last 3000 miles?
bad spark coil pack(s)
really really dirty air filter
really really dirty fuel filter
excessive load on one of the pullys, causing the starter motor to work really hard (a failing component)
Fuel pump?


A bad alternator WONT cause difficulty starting the engine unless the mechanical part of the alternaor (pully, or spindle) is creating a LOT of friction, causing the engine not to turn over fast enough. But if that's the case, it can be any other pully driven component of the engine and you'd probably hear a terrible grinding or squeeking noise.

All the alternator does is charge the battery and provide a constant electrical supply when the engine is running. The battery is in the car for engine startup, accessory power when the engine is off (like the radio), and for excessive electrical demands only, otherwise, there'd be a nice 30 lb reduction of weight

On some older ecnomy cars, the alternator doubled as the starter motor for the car's engine, this is not the case for all of the modern BMW's that I'm aware of. (definately not with the E36 line, I'm assuming the same for above models)
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Old 08-29-2004, 09:03 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I did change my oil just a few days ago...

Why would oil change cause this?
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Old 08-29-2004, 09:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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This was one of my recent problem and the dealer mechs found out that the Air Mass Meter was in need of replacement $500 at BMW Dealership. Becareful because sometimes your car may not start at all for a few hours.
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Old 08-29-2004, 09:24 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I have a similar problem(?) with my bimmer. It takes a little longer to start after long park, but once the engine is warm or throughout the day, I don't have any problem at all. I don't worry too much about this because this kind of thing is something you/we have to deal with an aging car. If this bothers you alot, you should do many things suggested by others, but I wouldn't do that.

When alternator is bad, you will know right away because you batter doesn't get charged even after long drive. When your starter is bad, you have a hard time starting the car whether it's warm or cold. So, in your case and mine, the problem is not so serious yet. It may be, but not now I assume.

I hope this would help. Good luck.
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Old 08-29-2004, 08:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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viscus oil making it hard for the engine to turn-over... Usually only a PROBLEM when the oil's been used for like.... oh... 10,000 miles.

it's a POSSIBLE cause, just checking, hey you never know.
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Old 08-30-2004, 11:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
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help me understand... is it that when you turn the key, the motor spins at the same speed as always but the motor doesn'tr start as quickly, or is it that when you turn the key, the motor turns over more slowly and thus the motor doesn't start as quickly? Until you specify, everyone is guessing without knowing what the real issue is. Depending on your answer, yes it could be low current to the started from a weak battery, poorly functional charging sytem. or imagine this... corroded terminals on your battery, oir ytour stater motor (hot or ground leads.)

Start with simple stuff guys.. beofre you decide the battery is no good. determine that the wires connected to it are clean and tight. go forward from there.
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