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Discussion Starter #1
Afternoon chaps, first post on the forum although I've been reading for a while now, hopefully I can contribute - but right now I'm after a little help :) Apologies for long post but thought probably best to give as much info as I can.

I have a 51 plate, 100k miles, 320 manual, and I'm having issues with cold start idle. Every morning when I start it up to go to work I get quite violent vibrations from under the bonnet (misfiring?); shakes the whole car - no engine warning lights recently though. The vibrations appear to start ~15 seconds after ignition if I don't touch the throttle, just as it drops from 1k revs down to 800ish. Once warmed up the car is lovely though :shifty:

I had the same problem over a year ago which gave fault code for a bad camshaft sensor, it was replaced and the problem went away. I'm pretty sure this started happening again during the really cold weather before Christmas. I recently purchased a motorbike, so the car went undriven for a few days - and it went really bad, neighbor mechanic took to to his garage and changed all the spark plugs, declared it fixed - but the next morning it's still vibrating - admittedly a lot less violently and it drives a lot smoother.

I gave the MAF a clean just because it's easy; no change. Then I noticed that I could hear a rushing air sound near the DISA, sounds like its coming from under the inlet manifold, closer to the front end of car. This where the oil separator (CCV) is? Would a duff one of these be causing my problems? Or is this air rushing sound normal at idle?

Thanks very much in advance for any advice :thumbsup

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Just to add - I've just tried the CCV test - plastic bag over oil filler when car is idling. There is quite a strong suction on the bag. If oil filler left uncovered it results in very poor idle - I gather this is a good thing? But does that only rule out the oil separator itself? What about damaged hoses? :confused

edit: There also seems to be loud 'gargling' coming from the dipstick tube when running.
 

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have you had any codes read this time around?
there should be slight suction with the oil filler cap off...certainly not a strong sucking.
this gargling from the dipstick tube stops when the car is warm?
any unmetered air getting in will give a dodgy idle, especially on the warm up strategy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi 328mark, thanks for reply. I was told by my neighbour who took it to his garage to see whats what, that this time around there were no codes. Could be because I tend not to let the vibrations get too bad by giving it a bit of throttle, this settles it down - if I don't give it throttle they get worse and worse :jaw-dropping

I must say after the plugs were all replaced it has got a lot better, but it's still there annoying me. I didn't ask if the plugs were in a state, it's been kept to service interval though.

The gargling from the dipstick is ever present, even after a long drive.

So it's likely to be an air leak somewhere? I've gone as far as removing the air box to have a look at the rubber intake boots, they look ok - but don't have the tools to go any further down (don't tend to do much work on the car myself) :embarrassed

Cheers
 

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I am interested in this thread as my 2003 320Ci Coupe with 53k also has a similar issue, and I have no idea what it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Last MOT was done in Jan, and I was having the problem back then. They didn't mention anything about it, emissions tests all passed:

Not sure what I should be looking for, here's all the data on the test results:

Fast idle:
Speed - 2791rpm
CO - 0.05%
HC - 52ppm
Lambda symbol (?) - 1.000

Natural idle:
Speed - 811rpm
CO - 0.01%

Thanks for the help!
 

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I think this is likely to be the hydraulic lifters at fault, especially as it only does it on a cold engine. If it misfires long enough it will eventually bring on the engine management light, you can then get these read and my bet is a 'misfire cylinder x', x being the number of the misfiring cylinder(s). Mine used to do this, but a couple of short oil changes has made it a lot better...

There is a monster 5 series thread on this somewhere, i'll see if i can find it..!

Dave.
 

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you would be looking for a high lambda if there was an air leak...yours is spot on, so no worries there.
with sticky tappets you generally get a ticking/clicking accomponying the dodgy idle???
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks Snash, it does seem very similar, will mention it to the garage. The engine does sound a little 'ticky' when idling, but I never really thought much of it. Any good way to test if they are definitely the culprit?

Sounds like a big job too? This likely to damage my wallet badly? Probably a bit much for me to DIY... :frown
 

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A garage can do a 'leak down test' which will check that the valves are sealing properly...this would point to the lifters or possibly a valve problem.

Yeah it's a proper specialist job to change the lifters - cam sprockets off, camshafts have to come out and because they're hollow they need to be removed with proper kit or they'll snap...! Sometimes an oil flush like Forte can help when you do an oil change.

A good BMW garage will be able to at least advise you on a lifter issue....

Not a cheap fix to have them replaced unfortunately but like i said, chat with the garage about the possibilities of flushing the oil....
 

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i seriously doubt tappets myself they would rattle there t+ts off and ive neve seen duffers on an M54 engine yet....

coilpacks, cam sensors or an Iffy MAF are favorites..

ide change the oil if anything if its not bin changed for a while..
 

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What was outcome of this ?
 
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