3-Series (E46, E90)Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.
Buy an OBD2 scanner ( about $150... what a mechanic might charge you to check a vehicle ) and see what's up with the check engine light. Checking the MIL with a scanner is stupid simple and they don't " misfire". TR
DO NOT BUY it until the seller has it diagnosed!!!
Recently bought a 2003 330i ZHP with 34,000 miles and under BMW warranty with "Service Engine Soon" light on. Since it was under factory warranty and the price seemed right ($5,000 below market), I took a gamble. Two days after purchase, the dealer took it in for a more than a month long service period. Over $12,000 worth of BMW dealer parts cost and labor was billed to BMW. (The warranty work was done with PUMA supervision, BMW's warranty work procedure and authorization arm.) It was released as "running to BMW specs." I was amazed and appreciated what the BMW dealer did and what the BMW warranty covered.
However, the problem was not resolved. After a break-in period for the new cams and lifters, I decided to push the engine and when it accerated to 5000 RPM, the dreaded "Service Engine Soon" light came on and the engine went into a "limp home mode." It cleared up after 5 minutes of driving and then repeated, when I again accelerated up to 5000 RPM.
Went back into the shop again. It has been over two weeks, the head has been taken off to inspect the valves as there is some claim that the valves were bent. To date, there is carboning of the exhaust valves in number 5 and 6. The vacuum test showed that the valves were not leaking. That was over 5 days ago. There was no evidence that valves hit the pistons.
I think there is a mixture problem which the replacement of the cams, lifters, and other related parts did not address. Perhaps it may be in the fancy variable intake valve lift in the place of throttle plate that may be malfunctioning in number 5 and 6 cylinders. Or, plugged cats.
The moral of the story to me is: Don't Buy It Even If It Is Under Warranty!!!
Have the seller have it diagnosed at the dealer or a reputable BMW garage and fixed, before you think about buying it. Especially in your case as there is not factory warranty available.
MIL=Malfunction indicator light... and this light won't come on (misfire) unless there's a problem. Even if the case is that the light comes on w/o any other problem, that's a big problem. Would you just ignore it?
105,000 miles is high mileage, in a BMW or any similar sophisticated vehicle. If you're not prepared/able to do, at least, some of the repairs that will be required by this car ( cooling system leaks, cam position sensors, windshield washer leaks, headlight bulb replacement, oil changes....) be ready to pay what the service folks in your area will charge. "Paradise ain't cheap" TR
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