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Discussion Starter #1
Hello All,

I'm not that car tech savvy, and probably a case of a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. I'm looking for some help with my 325i 2007 which has had an engine fault now for probably months that is steadily getting worse.

We noticed a while ago sometimes there'd be a smell getting into the cab that I'd describe as similar to when you blow out a candle. Eventually we started getting a CEL, the small yellow symbol. Every now and then we get the big CEL light that displays over the trip meter.

At first it seemed like a cold start, even when not too cold out. Not every day, but start up to rough idle and then the small CEL might come on. Switch off count to 10 and back on - engine running perfect. It has gotten to the point that every start is the same with rough idle, and sometimes it turns over a lot before starting which is recently new. But always rough idle and if we sit long enough in traffic it gets worse and small CEL comes on, and gets smelly in the cab. If the large CEL comes on, it also kicks the cooling fan on and engine runs like a dog. Once the lights are off and driving around town or on the motorway the engine purrs.

Also notice a lot more acute petrol smells and a stink in the cab more often that does not smell like a blown out candle any more. The car has always been a bit smokey out of the exhaust, but does have a broken NOX sensor. That does not seem to have gotten any worse.

About a year ago I had the coil pack on #4 changed and also a new O2 sensor. About three years ago I had injector#1 blow and that was a much different affair to this, though my thoughts are now injector on #4. But the smell?

I called out the AA one morning and they ran some checks. The strange thing is the diagnostics were reporting misfires on #5 and #6 and this is a straight 4 engine. So I bought a BMW specific basic fault scanner and same thing. Reports on 6 cylinders.

When I do clear down the fault code, at times with the CEL stays on, the engine immediately purrs for a while, but soon gets problematic at idle. Generally the power is there, but sometimes like yesterday, there is a real loss of power until stop the engine and restart. As soon as engine is up to speed (1k+ rev) it purrs.

Diagnostics:
- True running value on #4 is way more erratic than 1,2 + 3. Also displays for #5 + 6!
- 2C2E DMEL Oxygen sensor 2 before cat: coasting mode check - consistent on CEL and sometimes when no CEL
- 2E85 BSD message; electric coolant pump: Missing - reasonably consistent
- 2A2C DME: Mixture control 2 - consistent on CEL
- 29E1 DME: Mixture control 2 - noticed once
- 29D0 DME: Combustion misfires, cylinder 4 - consistent on CEL, but occasionally not
- 29F1 DME: Fuel pressure, plausibility - occasionally

Might be a complete coincidence, but when the #1 injector failed it was after using the gearbox paddles on the steering wheel and having a little fun, but nothing excessive. The recent increase in CEL faults happened immediately after I recently used the paddles again. No red lining. Not over 80mph. CEL came on a few minutes after and the consistent rough idle occurred.

I tried Winns fuel line cleaner and it seemed to improve for a day, but now back to square one.

PS: how much should I expect to pay an Indi for an injector replacement?

Any help appreciated.
 

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Similar issue to yours, all my injectors are index 8 to 9 with only 80k mileage on the car, I am going to replace all 6 injectors, I have already done the Sparks and Coils and the rough idle is better as a result but it hasn't fixed the issue. Took the oil cap off and the oil smells of fuel, these injectors are knackered. I've stopped driving the car until I fix it and code them.
 

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Hesitate to disagree, but I think your engine is six cylinder. All 325i models of your year were fitted withe the N52 or N53 six cylinder. Models fitted with the N46 or N43 four cylinder engine were designated 318i or 320i.
 

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Genuine injectors come direct from BMW and cost about £240 each. Or you could take your chances and get one on eBay for a lot less but obviously it won’t come with any guarantee. Also you will find any reputable garage reluctant to fit parts you bought from eBay, at least that was my experience.

Sounds like you have the 6 cylinder N53 engine. Injector problems are notorious and sadly it seems the only way to really cure it is to replace all 6 with the latest index 11. Very expensive.

I had 6 injectors and NOX sensor done by local Indi specialist. The labour charge wasn’t bad as it’s a fairly simple job for them and they will be well used o doing them. My garage said they do injectors at least once a week! The job was expensive due to genuine parts but at least it was sorted quickly and I’ve had no problems in the last 10k miles unlike many who do it themselves only to find that 6 months later the issues return.

How much do you love your car?

If it’s 2007 and high miles I guess you may have to consider whether this is something worth fixing as it may not take long to exceed the value of the car in repairs.

Of course, it might not be injectors at all. I’d get it to a decent garage for a proper diagnosis. Buying a basic code reader is all well and good but unless you know what to do with the codes it’s not necessarily going to help.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi. Thanks for the responses. This is definitely a 4 cylinder 325i 2007cabriolet. I did change the plugs last year too. 3l petrol engine.

Think my Indi acted more like a stealer when he changed injector #1 at a cost of £550. Time to find a new Indi I think.

My gut tells me injector but it would be good to get some more views on this. Anyone got thoughts on the smells in the cab?

Cheers
 

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BMW have never made a 3 litre four-cylinder engine. Either it's a 4 cylinder or it's 3 litre. It can't be both.
 

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Labour cost for changing 1 injector is probably not much different to doing all of them (6 by the way).

Your smell must be coming through from the engine bay. If it smells of fuel then yes, probably leaky injectors. Having said that I didn’t get any smells when mine went.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
@Phil325i I stand corrected! AA tech told me it was an inline4 and sure my Indi said the same. But quick check under the bonnet and obviously an i6! So good in that the ECU is not giving dodgy readings. Bad in that I may need 5 new injectors. Though I might try just #4 since that is the consistent report.
@Chris H72 when injector#1 catastrophically failed the car stank but then there was a lot of smoke out the back too. I was wondering if I have a manifold leak or something
 

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Hi. Thanks for the responses. This is definitely a 4 cylinder 325i 2007cabriolet. I did change the plugs last year too. 3l petrol engine.

Think my Indi acted more like a stealer when he changed injector #1 at a cost of £550. Time to find a new Indi I think.

My gut tells me injector but it would be good to get some more views on this. Anyone got thoughts on the smells in the cab?

Cheers
£550 is little excessive I think.
When my 1st injector failed i approached local Indy, this was about 3 years ago.
The quote I recall was
£50 diagnostic.
£220 Injector from dealer.
£100 fitting and coding.

£370 to replace single injector.. WTF. I recall the garage feed some crap about how complex the cars and needs this and that.

Unfortunately when you drive into a garage with a reasonable priced BMW and give the impression you know nothing about mechanic its early pay day for garage.

I never replaced a injector before but no way paying the garage £370 for a single injector so followed some very well written guides on forum and replaced it myself... also bough the part lot cheaper than £220.

For smell to reach inside the cabin means the O-ring on the injector has also failed. in that case the car would drive really poor.
 

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Good result.

I was told by local Indi that the NOX sensor had died as a result of the injector/misfire issue so it was only replaced after the injectors were changed.
 

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My local Indi charged £185 labour which included diagnostics, replacing and coding 6 injectors and changing NOX sensor. The injectors came direct from BMW so we’re full price, about £240 each I think. At least they did come with a 2 year guarantee. Once that’s up it may well be time to change the car.
 

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I waited until ebay had an offer on, bought 3 on one account and was given £50 off a £500 spend, used another account to buy the other 3. £1004 for brand new OEM injectors, was happy with that.
 
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