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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N57 / M57 Turbo Diesel Discussions - 335d > New guy to the 335d scene, my story so far



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      03-14-2021, 02:38 PM   #1
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New guy to the 335d scene, my story so far

New guy here. Just go a 2009 335d and this forum has been invaluable. Long time Toyota guy, know them (and the engineering) like the back of my hand, I like to wrench, I like to tinker. Needless to say this car has been a bit challenging...I named it Adolf. Back story...

Was doing a bathroom remodel for a family. This car was sitting in their side yard under a tree. Leaves everywhere, moss in all the nooks a crannies, spider-webs everywhere, etc. I asked him about it and he offered it to me for a song, I just couldn't pass it up, at that point it had already seduced me. He told me it had a litany of problems, which I can confirm. He had the carbon cleaning done 10's of thousands miles ago, and he suspected that was the problem again as it went into limp mode and lost all power. I was hopeful and and willing so I gave the dude a grand and had it towed to my house as the battery was dead.

First thing, got new battery. 170.00 from Autozone, Duralast Gold H8-DLG 900 CCA Group 49. Was able to read stored codes, not good, had like 15 of them. Took the intake manifold off, the CBU was really not that bad, at least not enough to have the walnut blast I thought. It was more like a a smear of carbon on the runners, not gunky or anything like that. I bore scoped the runners and valves and although there was some build up, it didn't look that bad at all, probably better than 95% of the pics I've seen on here with those issues. I did clean the intake manifold and swirl flaps when it was off, as well as the TB and EGR valve. Got new pressure actuators and silicone vacuum line as the original line was pretty nasty and cracking. Verified the waste gates and changeover valve with a vacuum pump...they all held constant vacuum. Put in 5 gallons of B5 diesel with boosters and additives to condition the old fuel and increase the cetane rating thinking the other owner just used convenient B20 not knowing any better. Put it back together, I was feeling good at this point.

The car fired right up, revved nice. Took it for a test drive and that's when it went to hell...limp mode activated. This thing could not get out it's own way. However I did get some good info. Bad thermostat was immediately evident with my scan tool (BAFX adapter with Torque app), engine temps never topped 145* from idling to driving on the hwy.

Got these verified codes after the drive: P21a8, U0106, P14a3, P064c.

Research on here told me that a bad thermostat causes a host of problems...glow plug module premature failure, DPF regen not performing, etc. Two of those are related to codes I have. I just installed a new thermostat with housing and a new glow plug module. The GPM was a huge pain in the ass as the connector had bonded to the module, took me like an hr to finagle it off, by far the biggest pain for me so far on this car. The thermostat was not as bad but still kinda lame with the lack of slack in the hose connectors. Upon pulling the thermostat housing I could see that the thermostat was stuck open. Anyway it's done. Hopefully this takes me to some cleared codes and into a regen cycle to clear some more codes.

BTW, gotta give a shout out to FCP Euro, got their oil change package and it was like 40 bucks cheaper than sourcing the items locally myself, I also got the thermostat from them. I think they're in Connecticut and I'm in Oregon and I got the thermostat in 2 days, still don't know how that happened. Speaking of oil, changed it by pulling it out of the dipstick tube with the 7.00 harbor freight pump, worked but took about an hr.

In the interim, got new cup holders as the original were toast, super detailed the the inside, sucked moldy almonds from the crannies in the seats, stuff like that. The car had been sitting for so long it had mold and mildew all over the interior. Dislocated my middle finger scrubbing the crap out of it...I really hope it pays off...

Looking forward to actually being able to experience the potential this car has...
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      03-15-2021, 10:24 PM   #2
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So an update, took the car out today. About 1000 feet in the drive the orange check engine light came on with the SES light the orange warning triangle by the gear indicator. Still low on power but managed to log 80 miles hoping for a regen, not sure if it happened. Fuel economy based on the dial gauge was between 30 and 50 mpg the entire time at about 70 mph average.

Based on my research on this site it appears the DEF level sensor codes causes a limp mode condition which would make sense based on my findings. Besides buying the alternate VW part for 300, is there any way the original sensor can be fixed? I read a few posts on here that questioned that, but they all seemed to point in the direction of just buying the new part.

Has anybody figured out what actually goes out in these (broken wire, gunk build-up, burnt out resistor/capacitor/diode)? By what means is it sensing the DEF level? Just trying to get to the root of the problem before I commit to to a game plan. I know I'll have to drop it either way but if I can repair it for cheaper than 300.00 that would be sweet. Any input would be much appreciated if anybody has gone through this process before, if not I'll probably document it and post it up on here for reference...
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      03-16-2021, 02:12 AM   #3
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DEF level sensor doesnt cause a limp mode. You need a bmw specific code scanner.
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      03-16-2021, 10:46 AM   #4
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Okay, thank you for clearing that up for me. Sounds like I need to get the BimmerGeeks cable and dig into this a little more with my laptop and the standard tools, I still have not even registered by new battery yet...
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      03-19-2021, 08:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MidWillamette335d View Post
So an update, took the car out today. About 1000 feet in the drive the orange check engine light came on with the SES light the orange warning triangle by the gear indicator. Still low on power but managed to log 80 miles hoping for a regen, not sure if it happened. Fuel economy based on the dial gauge was between 30 and 50 mpg the entire time at about 70 mph average.

Based on my research on this site it appears the DEF level sensor codes causes a limp mode condition which would make sense based on my findings. Besides buying the alternate VW part for 300, is there any way the original sensor can be fixed? I read a few posts on here that questioned that, but they all seemed to point in the direction of just buying the new part.

Has anybody figured out what actually goes out in these (broken wire, gunk build-up, burnt out resistor/capacitor/diode)? By what means is it sensing the DEF level? Just trying to get to the root of the problem before I commit to to a game plan. I know I'll have to drop it either way but if I can repair it for cheaper than 300.00 that would be sweet. Any input would be much appreciated if anybody has gone through this process before, if not I'll probably document it and post it up on here for reference...
As was previously stated, limp is not caused by a failed urea level sensor. Btw, both active and passive tanks have level sensors. Passive is just a full/empty sensor and active tank has a three level sensor -full/warning/empty. You can try draining old urea. You actually should. Rinse with distilled water and refill with fresh urea. Often there is crystallized urea, especially when car was sitting. In the early days BMW actually had a procedure for rinsing and refilling urea tanks as part of regular service. They abandoned it after a while. Search for a BMW University document called Advanced Diesel with Blue Performance. It will be a valuable read and explains the functionality of this and other systems.
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      03-19-2021, 09:15 PM   #6
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Just a few things about your codes. You should really get a proper BMW scanner. But loosely, your U0106 is a 49A5 which is a LIN-bus for a glow plug module and it sounds like you already fixed it. P14A3 is a 4D03 which is an exhaust pressure sensor. This could be just a loose banjo bolt for the EMP sensor or a plugged up feed line to the sensor or a cracked feed line. But if you donít smell raw exhaust, itís probably plugged up. Easy to remove the line and inspect for blockage. Remove on hot manifold. Watch for the two gaskets on banjo bolts. Line is not expensive from bmw. This may prevent DPF regeneration. Then P14A3 is a 49FF also related to the glow plug controller. And P21A8 does not come up. All seem like easy fixes. With dead thermostat Iím surprised you donít have a urea efficiency code. Invest in a data logging tool. Check here, TestO is best https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL...Mk6LOnVbuaM5LV
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      03-20-2021, 11:45 AM   #7
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Yozh, thank you for that information and direction, I know you know you're stuff based on the myriad of information you've contributed on here...and you're YouTube videos have been invaluable when I first started to dig into this project. I'll be looking into everything you mentioned. I plan on getting a BG cable as my next investment for this so I can dig deeper but I will also check out the TestO.

I believe the new GPM resolved it's related code. I don't smell exhaust so the that line may be plugged up, looks like one of the easier things to get to. I also now have the 4530 code, guessing it's a boost leak (hopefully not a compromised turbo) somewhere as I replaced/tested/verified everything vacuum related. I see a big caking of dirty dry oil across the d/s of the intercooler fins leading me to believe it's cracked, I'll be dropping that to inspect it and the hoses.

Just an update before I dig into this with the new guidance. It seems the limp mode is loosely based on temperature / heatsoak. In the morning when I drive it the engine icon comes on about the same distance every time. Now, however, when I park it for say 30 min and drive it again, limp doesn't happen unless I start pushing it. I can drive it somewhat spiritedly for miles and miles until the light comes on, and then sometimes it'll go right back off again, it's just weird but at least I know I'm making some progress...
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      03-30-2021, 09:28 PM   #8
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Another update for anybody traveling down a similar road or interested in my journey. Pulled the exhaust manifold pressure line, totally plugged up. Ended up using a combination of propane to heat up the gunk, followed by compressed air to blow a hole through it, solvent and lots of craft pipe cleaners. It's fully open now. Took it out again, engine icon came on again at the basically the same distance. It's odd though, it's like right as the icon appears, the engine revs up, almost like it wants to take off running...then limp mode happens and power is lost. I would like to verify the pressure sensor is good to rule that but cannot find any literature regarding testing with a multi-meter and the resistance values.

Also, dropped the DEF tanks to inspect. Looks like somebody was in there before me, hopefully replacing the active tank sensor. Everything looked really good, no DEF buildup or leaks anywhere. The active tank had a good amount of fluid in it, the passive tank hardly had any. I topped them both off and also did the 10k resistor trick to the upper level sensor to make it think it's full just in case it really was a bad sensor (I'll just be sure to keep it full). Looks like the sensor is plastic welded into the tank so I can't replace that part individually. Now my SES light is gone, engine icon still there.

Ended up downloading the Btools to dig a little deeper. Registered battery, reset adaptations, scheduled a regen. I have something like 39.5g ash and 6.5 g soot. I ran actual vs predicted values on a test drive... yeah, not making any boost, like 10-12 consistently when it's thinking it needs 20+ in light load scenarios. I did the heat soak thing and took it out again, engine light was off, still not making boost. At that point I said what the hell and put into sport mode and my foot into it for a downshift and at about 3k that thing took off like a freakin' demon, it put me back in the seat! During this time I did notice the boost jump up to about 17 but the check engine light came on during that test. Still getting the 4530 code (only one I have now). Although I tested the rear vacuum control valve I'll be replacing that to rule it out in case it's just "acting up". All vac lines are new but I will verify the routing. Still need to drop the inter-cooler and pressure test it, I'll be checking that the small turbo spins freely while I'm under there at I believe that is the one with the impellers exposed with the boot off. Is there anything else I might be missing? Thanks in advance...Dylan
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      03-31-2021, 09:34 PM   #9
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Low end issues could be the MAF sensor or MAP sensor
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      04-01-2021, 11:19 PM   #10
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4530 is so many options. You fixed your plugged emp line. Did you reset adaptations for emp? Commonly 4530 is boost leaks and issues with turbo control like vac lines, leaks in the vac syste, misrouted lines, broken nipples etc. could be bad turbo. You need to take it off to inspect though.
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      04-02-2021, 09:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MidWillamette335d View Post
I'll be checking that the small turbo spins freely while I'm under there at I believe that is the one with the impellers exposed with the boot off. Is there anything else I might be missing? Thanks in advance...Dylan
When you pull off the inlet pipe coming from airbox, you see the impeller of the larger turbo, not the smaller HP one. I keep following along to hear how you will finally solve the 4530 code. Good luck and you're making progress.
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      04-02-2021, 11:50 AM   #12
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      04-03-2021, 05:57 PM   #13
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Found boost leak

First off thank you to everyone who has helped guide me through this process. I feel that the destination is that much sweeter when there is a meaningful journey involved. I'm getting closer.

To address some suggestions. I have not verified the MAF or MAP sensors. I cannot find literature anywhere on how to test them with a multi-meter. I'm thinking the MAP I can put some pressure to it and see if there is a change in resistance. The MAF might be showing some weirdness itself through the app I got on the “actual/predicted” values page. When in limp mode (and this may just be a symptom of limp mode itself) the actual MAF values vs expected are wildly off. When not in limp mode they're pretty even.

I haven't reset the EMP adaptations, unfortunately the app doesn't have that feature, I'm hoping it will re-learn itself over time. But if resetting it is a must, I will have to get it done one way or another. I haven't had time to inspect the vacuum lines or verify routing.

I ended up under the car today, pulling the inter-cooler. I could not get the orange boot off the large turbo, (thank you for the clarification) but it felt really loose even with the clamp fully seated. I've seen on here that some have upgraded this part for a better fit so that may be on the table of things to do. But the real find was indeed a cracked inter-cooler. I cleaned up the inter-cooler with engine degreaser and got some 3” expansion plugs at the hardware store. Sealed one side and put air to the other. There is a crack in the plastic end cap. I could feel air blowing on my hand when pressure was applied, and that pressure was me just blowing into it, not sure how much boost my lungs create but I'm sure much less than a turbo, lol. I plan on getting some super strong epoxy to patch it up while I source a new aftermarket unit.

So I guess, all in all, good news. Another gremlin found. Also, I took some screenshots of my drive today. The first one is the first drive of the day, engine icon on, just like usual. The second and third are after it was parked for 15 min then driving back home, no engine icon. You can see what I was wondering about the MAF values being biased in limp mode, maybe that's a clue to a bad MAF? Also, in limp mode my turbo actuation stays at 95%. Not in limp (no engine icon) it varies based on my foot. The last pic is the crack in the inter-cooler, soon to be repaired...
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Last edited by MidWillamette335d; 04-03-2021 at 09:35 PM..
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      04-03-2021, 09:27 PM   #14
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Crack repaired for the time being. Used the best stuff, I believe, the local hardware store carried. Had that odor that left you confident it'll bond well...
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      04-07-2021, 12:57 AM   #15
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You can probably find someone to donate an intercooler to you. Iíve thrown mine in metal recycling. Lots of people have upgraded theirs and stock ones are gathering dust. Unless of course you want an excuse to upgrade your Intercooler. Concerning a MAF. Itís really a wear item. If itís got some age to it. Replace it. They are around $100 Bosch part. Get one from a place like FCP that has lifetime warranty.
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      04-08-2021, 01:44 PM   #16
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I have a few used OEM IC's.....cover shipping and ill send you 1.
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      04-08-2021, 07:06 PM   #17
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Well, another update. It seems the crack repair took, appears to be holding. Suffice to say though, really no change in condition. I will probably just bite the bullet and get a new or non-compromised inter-cooler. I have 127k miles on it so it sounds like a MAF is in order as well, ordering today. Those MAF numbers are way off so I kinda suspect that might be an issue. It seems to top out at about 450 on “actual” numbers. I wish it was like a Toyota (3rd Gen 4Runner) in terms of just checking resistance across the terminals, but it looks more like these are 5 volt reference based and I'm not familiar with that, nor do I have the literature for testing.

I was also looking at some previous posts about the EMP sensor getting messed up when you have the plugged line, so I might be getting another one of those too, one thing at a time though. Speaking of EMP...I contacted the maker the Btools app I'm using about offering an EMP adaptations reset and within a day he got back to me asking for the last 7 of my VIN so hopefully that'll amount to something.

Today I re-verified vacuum. All actuators are still working and holding vacuum. I can hear the gates closing when I release vacuum. Swapped EGR and boost solenoids for giggles. Tested accumulator, it's holding. Inspected lines, all good and routed correctly. Plugged the main crossover line for the pressure converter and pulled vacuum on the crossover line for the EGR solenoid to test the driver's side of the system. I was loosing a small amount of vacuum somewhere. I pulled and plugged the line going under the car to rule that out. Still loosing vacuum so it must be from either the brake booster or the vacuum pump, or a cracked line...or it just bleeds off slowly like that due to some engineered regulator in the system? I don't know, I'm probably over thinking it. I'll report back if something changes, probably just gonna put it to rest until the MAF shows up.

maryjane, I saw this before I posted, I'd definitely be interested, I'll message you....Thank you!
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Last edited by MidWillamette335d; 04-08-2021 at 07:06 PM.. Reason: Grammar
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      04-09-2021, 12:15 AM   #18
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Whatís a crosssover line?
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      04-09-2021, 08:54 AM   #19
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I was just referring to the two vac lines that cross over the front of the engine from the ds to ps, one to converter and one t'd to the egr and then the accumulator.
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      04-09-2021, 07:52 PM   #20
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Tested your motor mounts and an el valve for them?
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      04-10-2021, 05:45 PM   #21
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I did not test the EL valve for the engine mounts. After I found that slight vacuum leak on the DS, after isolating the PS, I pulled the vac supply at the T fitting under the car and tested again. Yielded the same results. I pulled the vac supply line from the trunk connector under the manifold and plugged that line to totally rule that system out and got the same results...slight bleed-off. I jiggled the union for the brake booster and observed no noticeable deviation in the vacuum loss. I have a new MAF on the way...

Today got my new MAF and air filter, two days after ordering. Apparently FCP Euro has a fulfillment center in Portland...sweet! Anyway, installed those, reset MAF adaptations. Same ol' situation. I tested vacuum on entire system while engine running and it holds strong at 25. I need to test the EGR actuator though.

I did some data logging when the check engine light was off so I could see what it was doing when it came on. I attached the moment I believe things go wonky. First observation is that when my turbo actuator is fluctuating based on the load requirements, the EGR actuator stays at 0. When my turbo actuator stays at 95% (limp mode style) my EGR actuator is fluctuating like it's working properly, you can kinda see the correlation in the spreadsheet (I deleted a few thousand lines before this moment, but it was the same correlation up to this point). It's like when one is working the other isn't.

First thing to happen is the MAF numbers skewing (they were within a few numbers to this point). Then my fuel pressure skews a bit, then the EGR actuator begins to function, then the turbo actuator is locked at 95% the rest of the time but now the EGR actuator appears to be functioning normally. My MAF numbers stay skewed the rest of the time also.
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      04-13-2021, 03:34 PM   #22
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I went through a couple months of trying to rebuild my new to me 2011 335d with 50k miles on the odometer. I tested so many things to narrow down my problems. I had underboost issues, MAF issues, no boost issues, vacuum issues. I changed a failed glow plug controller, both pressure converters (which were prob not broken), replaced exhaust side vacuum lines to silicone, fixed a vacuum nipple breakage in the vacuum reservoir but kept getting limp mode on high load scenarios and no power from the big turbo, sometimes none from small turbo, and sometimes no boost from either.

Monitor your EGT (exhaust gas temp) and see if the temperature seems to hover 700F to 900F when just cruising and never goes to regen at 1100F to 1200F. Normal running holds around 300-400F when my car was working.

Also check your DPF pressure. A healthy DPF is 0.1psi - 0.2psi at idle, mine was 4.5 psi when clogged. Exhaust manifold pressure should also be barely 1.0 psi at idle which mine was 0.1 psi when DPF was clear and regenerating.

If your exhaust smells more acidic like vinegar rather than the ammonia smell then all of these are signs that your DPF is clogged beyond regeneration.

I did the full deletes with a Malone tune when I experienced all those symptoms and everything returned to normal with no CEL for anything but needing a new MAF because it seems to be common when you get injector codes after a DPF delete.
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