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      03-26-2013, 11:15 AM   #1
bigdave196
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Misfire due to low fuel?

My car has been in the stealers twice in as many weeks for rough idle and hesitation under acceleration and occasional misfiring. Being a 320i this lead me to believe it was the coil issue again as it's the same symptoms as the last time it happened (even though it's already had all the coils replaced under the recall).

The first time they had it they said they couldn't find anything wrong with it, there weren't any error codes and to take it back and see if the problem still occurs.

Sunday I was driving back from my girlfriend's, just come off the motorway and it starts rattling like a bag of hammers and goes into limp mode, so I arranged to get it seen to today.

They've just called and told me that there was an error code for misfire on cylinder 4 and a code for low fuel, therefore the misfire was caused by the low fuel. This sounds like a bullshit excuse to me. Granted, the low fuel light had just come on just before the misfire, but it's been running poor regardless of the amount of fuel in it for the past few weeks.

Has anyone ever heard of a misfire being caused by low fuel?
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      03-26-2013, 11:32 AM   #2
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Sounds like bollocks. When low fuel comes on you probably still have 10 litres. This is however a BMW dealer you are talking to, so it is actually a feature that all their cars go into limp home mode when the low fuel indicator comes on.

When were your spark plugs last changed?
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      03-26-2013, 05:58 PM   #3
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They are about to tell you it's crap in the tank thats been sucked up because you let the fuel get too low. This is b.ll..ks because the pickup pipe does not reach the bottom of the tank and sediment (if any)should not be drawn up. Its something else...coils or plugs probably.
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      10-06-2017, 09:33 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdave196 View Post
My car has been in the stealers twice in as many weeks for rough idle and hesitation under acceleration and occasional misfiring. Being a 320i this lead me to believe it was the coil issue again as it's the same symptoms as the last time it happened (even though it's already had all the coils replaced under the recall).

The first time they had it they said they couldn't find anything wrong with it, there weren't any error codes and to take it back and see if the problem still occurs.

Sunday I was driving back from my girlfriend's, just come off the motorway and it starts rattling like a bag of hammers and goes into limp mode, so I arranged to get it seen to today.

They've just called and told me that there was an error code for misfire on cylinder 4 and a code for low fuel, therefore the misfire was caused by the low fuel. This sounds like a bullshit excuse to me. Granted, the low fuel light had just come on just before the misfire, but it's been running poor regardless of the amount of fuel in it for the past few weeks.

Has anyone ever heard of a misfire being caused by low fuel?
same problem here, how did you fix it?
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      10-07-2017, 02:56 AM   #5
rasa bmw
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as said..bmw mechanics are just that..mechanics..no better than any other,,the onlything is that they are familiar with the jobs,,and miost easy jobs get tasked out to cadets ha ha like washing yoiur car with sand paper ha ha
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      10-07-2017, 05:44 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by rasa bmw View Post
as said..bmw mechanics are just that..mechanics..no better than any other,,the onlything is that they are familiar with the jobs,,and miost easy jobs get tasked out to cadets ha ha like washing yoiur car with sand paper ha ha
Spot on. I've been to better kwik fits than some BMW dealers and that's saying something because kwik fit are invariably shite
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      10-10-2017, 05:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djgandy View Post
Sounds like bollocks. When low fuel comes on you probably still have 10 litres. This is however a BMW dealer you are talking to, so it is actually a feature that all their cars go into limp home mode when the low fuel indicator comes on.

When were your spark plugs last changed?
+1 absolute nonsense. I've regularly ran my car when they say "0" mile or km left in the tank and never had or heard such an issue. Maybe they meant low fuel as in ne of the injectors is not supplying enough fuel to that cylinder?
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      10-11-2017, 04:54 AM   #8
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I know with my longstanding misfire issues, I will get a cyl misfire code, and sometimes also the 'Misfire due to low tank fillings' , probably when the 'low fuel' indicator has been on.

But my low fuel indicator comes on at 70 miles range (well annoying!), at what range does it throw a low fuel misfire code? it's nonsense because I usually fill up before it gets to 30 miles range, so I've never been running on fumes.
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      10-11-2017, 01:00 PM   #9
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My e90 did the same. Ran poorly then multiple misfires at the side of an unlit country road. Blanket replacement of all injectors & coils and it was fixed. Also fuel pressure sensor - high & low i believe was replaced when i kept randomly getting EML light pop up at varying speeds. Lastly it was the water pump, i had to show the BMW technician the error code on my carly app for him to believe there was an issue LOL

I doubt low fuel in the tank caused this. From what i read all the above are common faults on BMW 4cylinder cars from this era. Some garages have complete idiots working behind the scene while others are amazingly good. You just need to find the right one. The best BMW garage i been to was BMW Lincolnshire - might be 100+ miles away but they were the best in fault finding & overall service.

Good luck!
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      10-11-2017, 03:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The0pportunist View Post
My e90 did the same. Ran poorly then multiple misfires at the side of an unlit country road. Blanket replacement of all injectors & coils and it was fixed. Also fuel pressure sensor - high & low i believe was replaced when i kept randomly getting EML light pop up at varying speeds. Lastly it was the water pump, i had to show the BMW technician the error code on my carly app for him to believe there was an issue LOL

I doubt low fuel in the tank caused this. From what i read all the above are common faults on BMW 4cylinder cars from this era. Some garages have complete idiots working behind the scene while others are amazingly good. You just need to find the right one. The best BMW garage i been to was BMW Lincolnshire - might be 100+ miles away but they were the best in fault finding & overall service.

Good luck!
Too right! I have 2 useless stealerships near me so I've given my car to a garage that about 150 km away.

Didn't these cars have a HPFP issue or was that just on the 6 pots?
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      10-17-2017, 06:28 AM   #11
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Two days ago the low fuel warning came on a mile or so later I accelerated hard up a big hill & bong! reduced power 1/2 engine light comes on, coincidence? Turned car off & back on at earliest opportunity put some fuel in it & as hard as I tried it wouldn't go back into limp mode.
Am at my indy today having VCG replaced so I mentioned going into limp & low fuel warning, he tells me it's not unusual, they're going to pull the codes on it after they've done VCG & mot

Limp mode was caused by low fuel pressure, they've cleared the fault code & have told me not to run it low on fuel & keep it above a third of a tank. I'll take there advice & see what happens.
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Last edited by Chappers 71; 10-17-2017 at 05:31 PM.
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      10-17-2017, 03:37 PM   #12
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[quote=Chappers 71;22314096]Two days ago the low fuel warning came on a mile or so later I accelerated hard up a big hill & boing reduced power 1/2 engine light comes on, coincidence? T

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      10-17-2017, 04:31 PM   #13
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[quote=ChawenHalo;22316026]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chappers 71 View Post
Two days ago the low fuel warning came on a mile or so later I accelerated hard up a big hill & boing reduced power 1/2 engine light comes on, coincidence? T
I've known my Indy for 20 years, if he says this sometimes happens under hard load when the car is low on fuel I will take him at his word until the same fault occurs when I've got plenty of fuel in it.
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      10-18-2017, 05:53 AM   #14
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[quote=Chappers 71;22316278]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChawenHalo View Post

I've known my Indy for 20 years, if he says this sometimes happens under hard load when the car is low on fuel I will take him at his word until the same fault occurs when I've got plenty of fuel in it.
Sorry, for some reason the website did not register my (abusive? ) post.

He's not wrong but stuff does not "just sometimes happen" like that. IMHO, its just impossible.
1. I've ran BMW's at 0 fuel gauge plenty of times (E39 535i, E39 540ai, E90 330d, Z3 Coupe 2.8, S54) drive me wife mad
2. Cars simply are not manufactured that way. Imagine all the cars running low on fuel going on limp mode on the motorway?!
3. From memory E90 330i and 335i can suffer from fuel pump issues and HPFP issues.
4. He's giving you the symptom not the underlying issue. If DME is getting the message that not enough fuel will be supplied, it will protect the engine and indeed go into "limp home" mode.
5. No garage, no matter how experienced, trustworthy, friendly and how long we've used them can be 100% right 100% of the time. That's normal.
6. Codes don't necessarily register on DDE if fault is temporary even sometimes if reoccurring.

My money would be on a fuel pump and sender failure. Remember that in mechanic failures are not often immediate but rather progressive, its just sometimes we cannot detect the warning signs.

Its no big deal, pumps can fail for all sort of reasons.

Regarding the first OP, that sounds like the kind of nonsense garages will give you if they don't want to warrant their previous work.

Last edited by ChawenHalo; 10-18-2017 at 06:00 AM.
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      10-18-2017, 10:18 AM   #15
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[quote=ChawenHalo;22318224][quote=Chappers 71;22316278]

Sorry, for some reason the website did not register my (abusive? ) post.

He's not wrong but stuff does not "just sometimes happen" like that. IMHO, its just impossible.
1. I've ran BMW's at 0 fuel gauge plenty of times (E39 535i, E39 540ai, E90 330d, Z3 Coupe 2.8, S54) drive me wife mad
2. Cars simply are not manufactured that way. Imagine all the cars running low on fuel going on limp mode on the motorway?!
3. From memory E90 330i and 335i can suffer from fuel pump issues and HPFP issues.
4. He's giving you the symptom not the underlying issue. If DME is getting the message that not enough fuel will be supplied, it will protect the engine and indeed go into "limp home" mode.
5. No garage, no matter how experienced, trustworthy, friendly and how long we've used them can be 100% right 100% of the time. That's normal.
6. Codes don't necessarily register on DDE if fault is temporary even sometimes if reoccurring.

My money would be on a fuel pump and sender failure. Remember that in mechanic failures are not often immediate but rather progressive, its just sometimes we cannot detect the warning signs.

Its no big deal, pumps can fail for all sort of reasons.

Regarding the first OP, that sounds like the kind of nonsense garages will give you if they don't want to warrant their previous work.[/QUOTE


Yes it's possible there's an underlying problem, one or both fuel pressure sensors is what I'd suspect.


This same issue has occurred 4 or 5 times over the last year or so & it only happens when the car is low on fuel. One time it happened twice when running under load, range was an indicated 20 miles. I put half a tank of fuel in it & on the same road under the same conditions it wouldn't go back into limp mode.
As I posted earlier I will keep the fuel above a third of tank & if it occurs again with plenty of fuel in it I will then get something done about it.
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Last edited by Chappers 71; 10-18-2017 at 10:23 AM.
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