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      08-10-2012, 06:13 PM   #1
biz77
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Jerking under moderate acceleration - N54 - Not injectors!

I own a 2008 335i purchased used in March with just under 34,000 miles on the clock. The HPFP was replaced by the previous owner to the most current pump. In mid-June with approximately 38,000 miles, the car began exhibiting signs of fueling or ignition issues. Under anything other than very light acceleration the car would jerk as if not getting enough fuel or seriously misfiring. This was quickly followed by a check engine light and noticeable loss in power, but no half-engine light, indicating to me it was something other than the HPFP.
I called and drove to the dealer around 4:00 in the afternoon. They were able to diagnose the issue as at least one faulty injector quickly. They actually replaced five injectors and had me back down the road at 6:45 the same day. The car ran great. Gas mileage was up slightly. I thought all was well.
Two weeks ago the car began exhibiting the same symptoms to a much less severe degree. It began simply as a slight and brief jerkiness when applying moderate throttle at highway speeds and only on occasion. As time went on, the issue was magnified and instead of every once in a while, the problem appeared almost every time moderate throttle was applied. The issue did not present itself under full throttle applications. The issue was also almost non-existent in the cooler morning temperatures even once the car was up to temp, while it was almost always prone in the warm afternoon coming home from work.
The straw that broke the camel's back so to speak, occured Tuesday when the jerkiness appeared so severe that it finally triggered a check engine light. The car maintained the loss of power and jerkiness, no matter the amount of throttle application which was originally experienced back in June. Upon cycling the ignition, the fault disappeared and the car resumed more normal behavior, only exhibiting the symptom under moderate throttle with the check engine light remaining off.
I took the car into the dealer yesterday morning. They found multiple misfire codes and proceded to replace all six fuel injectors to no positive outcome. Today they still have no answer on what the issue is, but BMW engineering is having them do an exhaust back pressure test through the O2 sensor bungs on the hunch that it could be a partially clogged catalytic convertor, which makes no sense to me based on the spontaneity of the events and the fact that full throttle power delivery seems to be unaffected.

Any ideas?

BTW, the car is bone stock and never modded (to my knowledge). It receives Chevron or Conoco 92 octane fuel and all maintenance is up to date.
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      08-14-2012, 12:06 PM   #2
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Tuesday A.M. - still at dealership with no diagnosis. Still driving loaner 328i.
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      08-16-2012, 01:25 PM   #3
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Getting used to the (lack of) power delivery of the 328. Still no resolution. Exhaust gas backpressure test revealed no issues. DUH!

They were moving on to checking coils. Plugs looked worn, but not to the point of causing issues.

Missfires in cylinders 4 and 6. I'm guessing bad coils or carbon build up.

For now, I'm putting 100 miles per day on thier car.
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      08-16-2012, 01:46 PM   #4
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I drive a 2007 328xi with 88k miles. I've been noticing an increase of this exact behavior with my car recently (moderate highway acceleration and slower uphill climbs).

Thought at first it was my AWD but can cross that one out. I assume my HPFP has been replaced considering my miles.

Curious to find out what happens with yours.
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      08-16-2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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The 328 does not use a HPFP like the 335 does. The 335 utilizes direct injection into the cylinder. The 328 is port injected.
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      08-16-2012, 02:54 PM   #6
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Oh cool. haha! Haven't done much research. Only had my car a few months. But this issue coming up has me quite worried.
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      08-17-2012, 03:33 PM   #7
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Just spoke with the dealership and supposedly they are replacing the cylinder head due to the injectors not seating properly. It also sounds like there is a question as to whether or not this will be covered by warranty.
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      08-19-2012, 06:55 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biz77 View Post
Just spoke with the dealership and supposedly they are replacing the cylinder head due to the injectors not seating properly. It also sounds like there is a question as to whether or not this will be covered by warranty.
That doesnt sound right; there would be a major recall for all vehicles affected. I have a feeling it is the HPFP.
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Last edited by Chriztofor; 08-19-2012 at 04:00 PM.
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      08-19-2012, 03:28 PM   #9
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I have the same problem with my 320d e90 2007. Feather the throttle and it jerks full throttle an it goes away. I've read that it could be the boost pressure sensor but I don't want to buy one in case it isn't that. I'm really stuck as to what this could be.
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      08-20-2012, 12:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriztofor View Post
That doesnt sound right; there would be a major recall for all vehicles affected. I have a feeling it is the HPFP.
I have a feeling the injectors they replaced back in June were not installed properly, leaving out the decoupling element, therefore causing wear around the injector seats. There is at least one other instance I've come across on this board: http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=696247
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      08-21-2012, 01:42 PM   #11
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BMW has come through and covered a new replacement cylinder head under warranty. I'm currently 28 days outside the 4/50 original warranty.

As a reminder to everyone, if your dealer replaces your injectors, make sure that the decoupling elements (13 53 7 564 751) are listed on the invoice as well.
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      08-22-2012, 10:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biz77 View Post
BMW has come through and covered a new replacement cylinder head under warranty. I'm currently 28 days outside the 4/50 original warranty.

As a reminder to everyone, if your dealer replaces your injectors, make sure that the decoupling elements (13 53 7 564 751) are listed on the invoice as well.
Good news, but if they coudn't install injectors correctly, I would be scared for them to replace the head!!! Fingers crossed!
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      08-23-2012, 12:55 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriztofor View Post
Good news, but if they coudn't install injectors correctly, I would be scared for them to replace the head!!! Fingers crossed!
I'm hoping they are "under the scope" on this one. They've had the car for two weeks working on it constantly at warranty repair rates. I'm guessing they are tired of seeing the car, want to get it done properly and don't want to see it back any time soon
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      08-31-2012, 06:14 PM   #14
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10-days after the warranty repair was authorized and work began on my car I still don't have my car back. 23 days total and counting.
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      08-31-2012, 06:48 PM   #15
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10-days after the warranty repair was authorized and work began on my car I still don't have my car back. 23 days total and counting.
Geez!!
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      09-10-2012, 03:18 PM   #16
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any update?
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      09-10-2012, 07:12 PM   #17
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I have the car back.

There are concerns.

Waiting for the dealer to provide additional info before commenting further.
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      09-14-2012, 04:20 PM   #18
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sound likes the same issue i have...but i havent taken it in for service as i am out of warranty.

please update with findings when you get your car back...
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      09-25-2012, 02:45 PM   #19
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What ever happened here? Updates?

My car is having the same issues. Fix one thing, another fault, fix another, all fuel related. I've only been 7 days with a loaner but it's getting frustrating calling back everyday and them telling me it's going to be another day.

So far: injectors, spark plugs, low pressure fuel sensor, walnut blasting intake, now possibly HPFP. This 328i loaner is blah.
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      10-01-2012, 04:18 PM   #20
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update? I am dealing with the same issues. Cyl 1-3 injectors replaced, HPFP replaced, plugs replaced.

Getting misfire codes in 1-6...
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      10-03-2012, 07:00 PM   #21
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Sorry guys. I have nothing new to report until I hear back from BMW corporate.

I can tell you they ended up replacing all six injectors, low pressure fuel pump sending unit, high pressure pump and of course the cylinder head. The car runs like a champ.
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      11-07-2012, 04:26 PM   #22
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To wrap up this story, upon completion of the cylinder head repair I noticed that decoupling elements were not included on the line-item invoice I received from the cylinder head debacle. The dealer's (Camp BMW) stance is that the decoupling elements were reused and did not need to be replaced. The chain of events as follows:

-Picked car up on 9/4/12 from Camp BMW around 4:00 p.m. Pulled out of dealer lot, jumped on the freeway and headed back to my office. About 8 miles into the drive I get the orange warning triangle and bong indicating that the oil level is at the minimum mark. I call my SA and alert them of the problem. He says they can bring oil to me at my office in the morning. I have a sixty plus mile commute between now and then so I refused, ran by the local O'Reilly and picked up a quart of Mobil 1 0-40 to top off the oil.
When I got home that evening I looked over the invoice and notice no decoupling elements listed in the parts breakdown.

-9/5/11. I'm on my way to the airport to head out of town and make a call to Camp BMW in regards to the missing decoupling elements. My SA is off this day and I speak to the other SA. Conversation as follows:

Me: "Hello SA, this is Chad, I just picked up my white 2008 335 that has been in your shop getting a new cylinder head for the past month. Are you familiar with the car and situation?"

SA: "No, I know nothing of it."

Me: "In looking through my invoice I notice that there is no sign that the tech replaced the decoupling elements on the injectors. From the research I've done online, the decoupling elements need to be replaced each time the injectors are pulled from the cylinder head."

SA: "I'm not sure, let me check with my tech."

I spend about five minutes on hold.

SA: "My tech says he's never heard of such a part and you shouldn't believe everything you read on the internet."

Me: "BMW identifies the part in this exact manner and I have official BMW documents that address it as such and identify the part number."

SA: "I can't really help you. You need to call back and talk to the SA that took care of you on your visit. I have to go with what our technician is telling me and he's our top guy."

Me: "Perhaps he's the one that let my car leave your shop with a minimum amount of oil in it. No worries, is my SA in tomorrow?"

SA: "He will be in tomorrow."

Me: "Thanks."

SA: "Tha..." END CALL

Due to my work schedule out of town, I could not contact my original SA the remainder of the week so I called first thing the morning of 9/10.

Me: "Hi, this is Chad, I have a concern regarding the repairs and my invoice."

SA: "What's up?"

Me: "It looks like the decoupling elements were not replaced on the injectors, contradictory to the procedure I see BMW calling for in technical bulletin SI B13 14 10."

SA: "Alright, let me take a look at the document, do some research and get back to you with what I find."

Me: "Great. Thanks!"

SA: "Thanks Chad."

I followed this up with an email as well, including an attachment of SI B13 14 10:

"Hello NAME WITHHELD,

Per our conversation, I have attached the BMW document relating to the procedure for replacing faulty high pressure fuel injectors on the N54 motor. Please note my specific areas of concern on page 2, line 10:


10. Defective or “unreadable” injectors are going to be marked “Replace” (red field). Use P/N 13 53 7 585 261 for the replacement.
Injectors identified as “OK” (green field) should NOT be replaced, but they should be reinstalled into corresponding cylinders after replacement of the PTFE Sealing ring (P/N 13 53 7 584 315) and decoupling element (P/N13 53 7 564 751), following REP 13 53 310.

As well as the top of page 3:



PARTS INFORMATION Part Number Description Quantity
13 53 7 585 261 Piezo injector As required, up to 6
13 53 7 564 751 Injectors’ decoupling element As required, up to 6
13 53 7 584 315 Injectors’ PTFE seal As required, up to 6


Neither part # 13 53 7 584 315 or 13 53 7 564 751 are shown on the latest invoice following cylinder head replacement nor the invoice from June when the initial batch of injectors were replaced.

I may entirely wrong on the matter, but as stated, I’d rather be safe than sorry. It seems a little more than coincidental that the cylinder head showed damage on an injector seat that was touched just two months prior. If the old components were reused, I would be disappointed with that level of repair since the document attached states to use new parts, but it would be better than leaving out the decoupling elements entirely. I’m simply looking for some solid evidence that the proper parts are in place and we should not have the same problem down the road.

I apologize for being a stickler on this. I realize you are very busy and appreciate your consistent courteous way. I hope to hear from you soon on the matter.

Regards,
Chad"

I received a phone call approximately two hours later.

SA: "Hi Chad, I have some info about these decoupling elements for you."

Me: "What did you find out?"

SA: "It looks like the decoupling elements were replaced when the injectors were replaced originally under the recall at 23,000 miles by Seattle BMW."

Me: "Okay, so why wouldn't you replace them when you replaced the injectors the three different times you have done so?"

SA: "According to the instructions we went by and even following the procedures exactly on the PUMA case on this last go around, there was no need to replace the decoupling elements."

Me: "Well that's very odd. Are you sure that the procedure doesn't call for it?"

SA: "Our manager has looked into it and assures me the replacement and repair procedures were followed exactly on this repair. The repair we performed on your car is an extremely rare case and the technicians that worked on it did it by the book."

Me: "That just seems to contradict what I'm reading."

SA: "Well, let me look into a bit more and see if I can find out anything else for you."

Me: "Okay, thanks."

SA: "Talk to you soon. Thanks."

I let approximately three weeks go by without a response, so I send an email to my SA on 10/3/12, asking if they stand by their decision:

"NAME WITHHELD,

Please let me know if Camp BMW stands behind their decision that the decoupling elements do not need to be replaced when the piezo injectors are removed and replaced. I still do not feel comfortable that the decoupling elements were reused based on the attached document that clearly states to replace these elements when the injectors are removed. I would like to have confirmation back from you on this.

Thanks,
Chad"

At the same time, I sent this email to BMW North America:

"Hello,

I’m writing to address a concern regarding recent service of my 2008 335i.

The car in question was brought into Camp BMW (Spokane, WA) in late May with approximately 38,000 miles due to a check engine light, reduced power and very rough running. The determination was made that five of the high pressure piezo injectors needed to be replaced. I was overwhelmed with the speed of which the repair was performed. From the time I experienced the issue to the time I was back on the road was less than four hours. The car ran great and gas mileage was even up a bit.
This new-found glory was short lived however, as the car began to develop similar issue in late July. At first the issue was very minor only exposing itself as a slight hesitation with moderate throttle inputs. The problem grew in intensity and frequency over the next few weeks until I was once again greeted with a check engine light, reduced power and the same rough running engine.
I dropped the car off with Camp BMW on August 9th, 2012. They immediately went through the same procedure as the prior visit and replaced all six fuel injectors, however the problem persisted. Diagnostics were performed for nearly two weeks to finally arrive at the conclusion that the cylinder head needed to be replaced due to one or more injectors not seating correctly in the head. Once the okay to repair was given by BMW USA I waited another two weeks before I had my car back.
While my car was in for these repairs I researched the issue and came across BMW technical service document SI B13 14 10, which is the procedure used to determine faulty high pressure injectors and the method of replacing them and their related parts. Per the document, each injector that is removed and replaced needs to be accompanied by a PTFE seal (part number 13 53 7 584 315) and a decoupling element (part number 13 53 7 564 751). Upon receiving my car back from Camp BMW and reviewing the invoice I notice that neither one these two parts were listed, despite the injectors being removed and replaced no less than two times over the course of the visit.
I called the next morning to express my concern, however NAME WITHHELD (my Service Adviser for this repair) was not in that day, so I spoke with NAME WITHHELD. I informed him of the information that I had come across and my concern that the cylinder head failure may have been caused by either a complete lack of the decoupling elements being installed when the car was brought in and the injectors replaced in late May or because the old decoupling elements were reused. He put me on hold to “speak with his top technician.” He returned stating the “tech has never even heard of that part and you can’t believe everything you read on the internet.” Trying to reason with NAME WITHHELD that this was a BMW service document got me nowhere and he eventually tired of me and asked that I work with NAME WITHHELD on the issue.
The next day I contacted NAME WITHHELD via phone and expressed my concerns. I followed our phone conversation up with the email attached. NAME WITHHELD committed to investigate further and get back to me. Before the end of the day he called to say that his research indicated that BMW Seattle replaced the decoupling elements and PTFE sealing rings when the fuel injectors were replaced originally at approximately 23,000 miles and he therefore felt that reusing these parts was well within the specified repair guidelines. I was hoping to get a written response back from NAME WITHHELD so that in the future, if the issue should arise again, I have something to fall back on now that the car is outside of warranty. I have put yet another request into NAME WITHHELD asking him to make Camp BMW’s stance clear on the issue.
What I’m asking from BMW USA is reassurance that the repairs to my car were done correctly. Should Camp BMW have reused the decoupling elements over the course of all the times they removed and replaced fuel injectors? I do not want to go through the process of having another cylinder head replaced.

Regards,
Chad XXXXXXXXXXX
XXX-XXX-XXXX

I received an automated response from BMW NA within a day. I received nothing from Camp BMW.

Within 72 hours, I received a phone call from Mitch at BMW NA. He left a VM on my phone and we played phone tag for the next couple of days. Once we finally connected he basically verified what he was reading in my email and set to work on getting me resolution.

After five days I received a phone call back from Mitch at BMW NA. He assured me that Camp BMW had performed the repairs per the book and I have nothing to worry about. I never heard back from Camp BMW.

Today, the car has approximately 46,000 miles on it and runs great. I'm hoping it continues to do so. If I have to revisit this situation down the road, Camp BMW stated that a 24-month warranty came with the repair. I hope I don't have to find out if that is a valid claim. For now, I have no desire to return to Camp BMW for any maintenance or repair. There are a few good independent shops around specializing in BMW and I'm competent when it comes to maintenance items. Just give me a Bentley manual and the correct tools.
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