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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all!

I recently moved to the U.K. from America - fairly active in the E34 section of bimmerforums.com and figured I'd register here with the new daily driving/ongoing project (as all these cars tend to be).

Once settled I bought a 2002 318i with the N42 - 74K on the clock, decent maintenance records and only a handful of owners.




269156



After a couple days of driving, the fun started.......

The car started to stall out in low RPM's while low on fuel driving home from work - also cut out on the highway. Thought it was fuel related, but the issues persisted.

Parts purchased to install immediately:
  • 0W 40 Mobil 1 oil
  • Mann air filter
  • Mann oil filter
First was the air filter and check the MAF. Once installed I started the car and the idles bounced around When I start the car cold it idles around 1,200 RPM's with a 500-600 with sputtering / slight rattle and occasionally stalled or nearly stalled. Figured I rushed the job so I took everything out including the intake boot to check for a Vac leak, and put it all back together. Worked okay, but still sputters a little at low RPM's. I removed the oil filler cap (which I plan to replace due to residue surrounding), and there was some blow back - so not sure it's the CCV, but could be other hose leaks.

While the weather was nice and I did't have parts I also did the following:

  • 'Cleaned' and swapped the Vanos Solenoids
  • Removed and 'cleaned' both intake and exhaust cam sensors


I also noticed some smoke and oil smell coming from behind the motor - felt around and it seemed to be fresh under the vacuum pump. I ordered a set of genuine gaskets and removed the pump to clean in the meantime:

269157


269158


That's where I stand currently, and I plan on doing the following in the near future as well:

  • Rocker Cover gasket(s)
  • Intake Manifold gasket(s)
  • Throttle body gasket
  • CCV and all relevant hoses
  • Cam Sensors & o-rings
  • Vanos Solenoid o-rings
  • Oil/Coolant temp sensor & oil pressure switch
Any other suggestions are welcome and appreciated.

~ JT
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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26 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Not much happening other than waiting for parts, etc.

Got bored and started to pull trim pieces from the headlights to clean. Next is to remove the lenses to install AE's. While they're out I will be restoring them since they're decently foggy - see 3rd photo:


269205


269206


269207


~ JT
 

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Hello all!

I recently moved to the U.K. from America - fairly active in the E34 section of bimmerforums.com and figured I'd register here with the new daily driving/ongoing project (as all these cars tend to be).

Once settled I bought a 2002 318i with the N42 - 74K on the clock, decent maintenance records and only a handful of owners.




View attachment 269156


After a couple days of driving, the fun started.......

The car started to stall out in low RPM's while low on fuel driving home from work - also cut out on the highway. Thought it was fuel related, but the issues persisted.

Parts purchased to install immediately:
  • 0W 40 Mobil 1 oil
  • Mann air filter
  • Mann oil filter
First was the air filter and check the MAF. Once installed I started the car and the idles bounced around When I start the car cold it idles around 1,200 RPM's with a 500-600 with sputtering / slight rattle and occasionally stalled or nearly stalled. Figured I rushed the job so I took everything out including the intake boot to check for a Vac leak, and put it all back together. Worked okay, but still sputters a little at low RPM's. I removed the oil filler cap (which I plan to replace due to residue surrounding), and there was some blow back - so not sure it's the CCV, but could be other hose leaks.

While the weather was nice and I did't have parts I also did the following:

  • 'Cleaned' and swapped the Vanos Solenoids
  • Removed and 'cleaned' both intake and exhaust cam sensors

I also noticed some smoke and oil smell coming from behind the motor - felt around and it seemed to be fresh under the vacuum pump. I ordered a set of genuine gaskets and removed the pump to clean in the meantime:

View attachment 269157

View attachment 269158

That's where I stand currently, and I plan on doing the following in the near future as well:

  • Rocker Cover gasket(s)
  • Intake Manifold gasket(s)
  • Throttle body gasket
  • CCV and all relevant hoses
  • Cam Sensors & o-rings
  • Vanos Solenoid o-rings
  • Oil/Coolant temp sensor & oil pressure switch
Any other suggestions are welcome and appreciated.

~ JT


Hi,
With the coronavirus going on where are you planning to get your rocker cover gasket from? Looking to do mine and wanted some advice
Thanks
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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26 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Hi,
With the coronavirus going on where are you planning to get your rocker cover gasket from? Looking to do mine and wanted some advice
Thanks
Hiya!

I recently ordered from C3 BMW


Give them an email at:
[email protected]

Simon has been very responsive and is sending me Cam Sensors (direct from Hella) and oil filter housing gaskets within the next 2 days.
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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26 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Not sure how good hella really is, I got a compressor for my e90 and bearings failing after 2 years
Agreed. They aren’t known for their sensors but given the company’s reputation - I’d trust their OE quality.

I always order genuine BMW sensors but find it hard to order from a dealer with the whole Virus edpidemic going on. Just looking for a decent temporary solution.

I’ve also ordered some Viton I-rings from X8R for the Vanos Solenoids:


Curious if anyone has used them or had any experience.

~ JT
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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26 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Small update - some parts came in, but still waiting for more.

X8R Vanos Solenoid seals came in which look great and the quality seems OE:

269265


Hella Cam Sensors came. I was excited to try them out as OE replacements given the brand reputation, but now I am not so sure. They look great and came with the seals, but the 'Made in China' pissed me off:

269266

269267


Also did a rough clean of the Vac pump. I was very surprised when I opened the unit. The reason being was the previous owner had the gasket replaced recently and paid an arm and a leg for labor. Looks like the mechanic failed to put sealant in the groove OR on top of the gasket. No wonder it continued to leak oil onto the exhaust :rolleyes::

269268


269269


269270


Next week I plan to complete the following:
  • Complete the cleaning and rebuilding of the Vac Pump
  • Clean/de-grease the front of the motor
  • Install both Cam sensors
  • Clean Vanos Solenoids (again!) and install new gaskets
  • Clean around the oil filter housing and replace both gaskets
  • Change oil and oil filter
Fun times in quarantine. Be safe everyone!

~ JT
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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Discussion Starter #8
So having two children during this quarantine means none of the above was completed. I did manage to start cleaning this:

269418


once degreased I plan to do the sensors and o-rings mentioned previously. Also may replace all of the plastic wire tubing on the front as some is missing.

I also finished cleaning and reassembled the vacuum pump. You can see the difference with the gasket width as well. Should make a big difference along with the sealant:

old gasket on the right:
269419


New gasket sits higher than flush-perfect fit:

269420


rebuild photos:

269421

269422

269423

269424


and all back together to dry:

269425


Next is the re-install and more degreasing!

~ JT
 

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OP. You seem to be throwing parts at this car and hoping for the best without actually doing anything to diagnose problems. You might want to pause for a moment and use a scan tool and check for DTCs and, most importantly, fuel trim values. The fuel trim values are the best indicator of how you car is performing from a fuel consumption viewpoint. Looking at their values you can tell easily whether you have a vacuum leak or an overfuel problem. A smoke test is a useful alternative but fuel trims are the way to go. If you can add a fuel pressure gauge to your tool kit that's also a great benefit. let's you check that you are getting the right pressure at the injectors. Dirty fuel filter or failing pump will affect pressure and cause stalling. VANOS seals can make the car a little sluggish when accelerating but they generally don't cause stalling. You are looking at cam sensors and the like which, if faulty, will throw a DTC.
 

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U.K.- 2002 318i / U.S. 1995 540i/6-speed
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Discussion Starter #10
One would say “throwing parts” at a car but it’s more a preventative maintenance along with replacing common failure items associated to some issues i’m having with the car.

1.) oil smell and smoke from the back of the engine- felt oil leaking from the he vacuum pump so I pulled it to do a £15 quick fix?

2.) stalling and cutting out/rough idle. Multiple hours of research and inspecting all vacuum lines for wear and tear. Saw none so NOT throwing money into new vac lines or a CCV. No shops open to do a smoke test which I’m aware would be a good ideal. Bought two can sensors for under £100 as a possible solution but known wear item regardless.

3.) noticeable leaking around the oil filler cap and from of the motor all gunked up near cam sensors and Vanos solenoids. I bought some degreaser, new seals to do a preventative maintenance and a new filler cap, all for under £20.

4.) oil filter housing gaskets I plan to do given the wrong oil and lack of changing in appropriate intervals and while I’m removing the filter, why not replace both gaskets for less than £20?

I think “throwing money” at the car would be buying rand new CCV system and hoses, new OE can sensors for £100 each, a new Vacuum pump for over £200, a fuel pressure gauge when the idle and start up are fine until warm, and having a garage overcharge for installation, but thank you for your concerns.

This thread is a project for a daily driver meant to document my ownership of the car and maintenance I do to assist others.
 

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One would say “throwing parts” at a car but it’s more a preventative maintenance along with replacing common failure items associated to some issues i’m having with the car.

1.) oil smell and smoke from the back of the engine- felt oil leaking from the he vacuum pump so I pulled it to do a £15 quick fix?

2.) stalling and cutting out/rough idle. Multiple hours of research and inspecting all vacuum lines for wear and tear. Saw none so NOT throwing money into new vac lines or a CCV. No shops open to do a smoke test which I’m aware would be a good ideal. Bought two can sensors for under £100 as a possible solution but known wear item regardless.

3.) noticeable leaking around the oil filler cap and from of the motor all gunked up near cam sensors and Vanos solenoids. I bought some degreaser, new seals to do a preventative maintenance and a new filler cap, all for under £20.

4.) oil filter housing gaskets I plan to do given the wrong oil and lack of changing in appropriate intervals and while I’m removing the filter, why not replace both gaskets for less than £20?

I think “throwing money” at the car would be buying rand new CCV system and hoses, new OE can sensors for £100 each, a new Vacuum pump for over £200, a fuel pressure gauge when the idle and start up are fine until warm, and having a garage overcharge for installation, but thank you for your concerns.

This thread is a project for a daily driver meant to document my ownership of the car and maintenance I do to assist others.
The reason I responded was your initial comment "The car started to stall out in low RPM's while low on fuel driving home from work - also cut out on the highway. Thought it was fuel related, but the issues persisted".

I got the impression that was a priority. My response was to address your options in resolving that problem. A first step at least. There is not a lot you have done so far in that direction. Hence my advice. Anyway, you can take it or leave it. That's how this works.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I appreciate the advice. The cutting out at low RPM’s usually tends to be a vac leak, cam sensors or an issue with the CCV. I thought it was fuel related but after further investigation it does not seem to be. I do plan on doing a fuel filter, cleaning the injectors, etc later down the road as this is a car I plan to maintain and keep for some time.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Slightly back on track today. I completed the Vanos Solenoid O-ring replacement, installed the cam sensors, finished cleaning the front top half of the motor, installed the rebuilt vacuum pump and lastly put on the new oil filler cap. Photos below:

Very glad I did the Vanos O-rings, the old ones were brittle and cracked/broke (car only has 74k on it) when removing:

269480

269481


Old vs. New X8R rings
269482


Installed and ready for assembly:

269483

269484


**installation tip- turn and push fairly hard to get the solenoids back in, takes some elbow grease.

Next was the Hella Camshaft Sensors. Curious how this will turn out/last as they outsourced and were made in China. They’re also surprisingly not the same shape as the OE BMW sensors:

269485

🤷🏼‍♂️

Front of the motor decently cleaned and back together:
269489


Cleaned and rebuilt vacuum pump ready to go in.
269486


I took a photo of the positioning when I removed it originally so it fit right back in. Bolts weren’t as bad as I thought:
269487


Installed the replacement cap since the OE was was leaking and is no good in my opinion.

Next on the list:

  • Replace the oil filter housing gaskets
  • Change oil and oil filter.
Once that is done the car should be mostly sorted for now. I plan to tackle the ABS and parking brake warning lights next. I read cleaning the sensors for each wheel may take care of the ABS. Already checked the parking brake sensor and it seems fine so will dig into that later.

~JT
 

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Looking at your pics i think you have the early cam chain tensioner fitted this would be worth changing for the latest type they are about £30 from the main agent,early type has weak spring and allows the cam chain to jump teeth.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the tip! I’ll look into getting one ASAP!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Completed the Oil filter housing gasket(s) replacement, installed a new filter and changed the oil to some fully synthetic. Photos below:

269511


Old filter was in rough shape:

269512


Housing removed and cleaned the area:

269513


cleaned the Inside as well:

269514


New gaskets installed:

269515


all back together and ready for a start for the first time in weeks, just need to charge the battery:
269517


Mostly preventative maintenance and hoping this stops the low RPM sputter once the car is warm. Fingers crossed it’s not the eccentric shaft. I’ve ordered a new timing chain sensor and will be installing that once it arrives. Standby for results and start up!

~ JT
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Results:
After a quick jump start, the car’s idle stayed consistent after 5 minutes of running. No visible leaks, though there was a decent amount of smoke coming from the back of the engine bay which stopped. A slight top up on oil and out for a test drive. The car drove fine and idled great at every stopping point.

I did a follow up check after the car had been sitting for a few hours. No visible leaks and I suspect the initial smoke was from previous oil that dropped from the vacuum pump prior to the rebuild.

Now for a wash/wax and interior deep clean. I’ll then start to tackle the warning lights:

- ABS stays on constantly -suspecting dirty wheel sensors so plan to clean all 4.

- Parking brake light stays on, still doing some digging into that issue.

Any suggestions welcome!

~JT
 

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Hi sounds like you have had a good result,although the N42/46 engines are well known for not being bmw,s finest hour,in my experience they are not that bad but do not suffer neglect well.
As for abs issues read the fault codes,there are other common faults in the abs system besides the sensors.Which warning lights are on ?just the abs.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
What started out as a productive day easily became frustrating.

As suggested, I purchased a new Timing Chain Tensioner and got around to replacing it today.

When I started to remove the old one I found it was barely tightened at all. One small turn and then I could unscrew its by hand 🤷🏼‍♂️

New vs. Old - huge difference
269579


Replacement successfully installed:
269580


Once tightened I started the car (which hasn’t run in a few days) and it stayed at 1,000 RPMS then dropped down to the usual 650. Then the fun started.......

I took the car out for a test drive and it.was.SLOW. I know the 318’s aren’t anything special but regardless of how far I put my foot down, the car just slowly accelerated. The idle seemed okay once warm and shifts were fine but it just seemed to drag majorly.

Got home and made sure there were no visible leaks, the cam sensor I unplugged to do the job was properly plugged in, and everything seemed to check out. I decided to check the oil and this happened:

269581


Today has been a few steps in the wrong direction. Now to remove the dipstick and get the broken piece out.

Any suggestions on sluggishness would be appreciated.

~ JT
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hi sounds like you have had a good result,although the N42/46 engines are well known for not being bmw,s finest hour,in my experience they are not that bad but do not suffer neglect well.
As for abs issues read the fault codes,there are other common faults in the abs system besides the sensors.Which warning lights are on ?just the abs.
Here’s a photo of the dash once started:

269582


I also replaced the timing chain tensioner today as you suggested and the car seems to be more sluggish than before. Any insight?

Thanks!

~JT
 
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