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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 09-01-2010, 11:47 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Starter spins, engine won't start

Hi.
I have a 1996 BMW 318i, that recently had it's engine redone, after a blown gasket.
Today, I drove for a few meters, then a clanking sound appeared and the car died. Now the engine wont start, even though the starter motor is turning. It doesnt really feel like the starter is turning the engine. When the car is in gear, and the ignition is turned, the car does try and move forward.

Any idea where I might start looking for the issue?
Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 09-02-2010, 06:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome to the Werkz.

If you try starting it in gear and the car tries to move forward would show that the starter motor is engaging normally and rotating the flywheel. I guess check if the crank is being turned by putting it in neutral and see if the water fan belts are being moved when the starter is being engaged. If it is, are there any warning / error codes being displayed? Does it try to fire at all? Can you smell unburnt petrol from the exhaust that will indicate that the fuel injectors are operating?
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Old 09-02-2010, 09:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Both fan-belts are spinning as I try and start the car. Also, I can smell petrol in the exhaust. It got new spark-plugs about 4000km ago. This issue is beyond me, I took it in to a professional today, I will post what was wrong.
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Old 09-03-2010, 10:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If you've got no spark, but good leads and plugs it could the high voltage side of the equation. Hopefully its not something too expensive.
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Old 09-03-2010, 10:33 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Unhappy

Turns out it was the crankshaft that snapped. I guess im in the market for a new car, since this one just had to many issues lately. Great forum btw. You guys have a lot of nice info.

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Old 09-03-2010, 10:47 AM   #6 (permalink)
OMFG another one!?
 
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Wow, sorry to see... best of luck on the new search.
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Old 09-06-2010, 01:17 AM   #7 (permalink)
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dang that sucks man sorry but that is a very unusual problem sound to me like a crank sensor
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Old 09-06-2010, 06:10 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by avio View Post
Turns out it was the crankshaft that snapped. I guess im in the market for a new car, since this one just had to many issues lately. Great forum btw. You guys have a lot of nice info.
No way that the crank is snapped!! If it was snapped (broken) you shouldn't see the belts turning smoothly when you crank the engine. Pull the spark plugs and carefully insert & remove a piece of wire and measure the depth of each cylinder (remove wire first) , then crank it over and see if the depth changes uniformly on each cylinder. If it does I'd get a second opinion on the diagnosis. The crank position sensor is a more likely explaination, and from I hear, not an expensive repair.
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Old 09-06-2010, 12:03 PM   #9 (permalink)
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No way that the crank is snapped!! If it was snapped (broken) you shouldn't see the belts turning smoothly when you crank the engine. Pull the spark plugs and carefully insert & remove a piece of wire and measure the depth of each cylinder (remove wire first) , then crank it over and see if the depth changes uniformly on each cylinder. If it does I'd get a second opinion on the diagnosis. The crank position sensor is a more likely explaination, and from I hear, not an expensive repair.
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Old 09-14-2010, 08:02 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The engine wouldn't even crank half way. It would just get stuck.
As mentioned previously, I blew a gasket a while ago on the car, and with this it was just getting too expensive to keep up.
Anyway, i've sold the car about a week ago.
Thanks for the replies guys.
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