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BMW 3-Series Maintenance and Repair



  • I have 2000 323Ci. I am having same problem. Dealer told me that, I need new transmission
    What did you do with your problem?
  • i have 04 325i automatic. replaced tranny last winter at 1000 miles due to deadzone of 20 sec when placed in drive. I have now 4500 miles.
    I have noticed that when i stop at the light and car is in 'D', The car starts in 2nd gear instead of 1st.
    The way I checked was to put it in manual when the car was stopped, and showed 'M 2'. I do not get that pep when starting at the green light. So I discovered that it always start in 2nd gear.
    Is that a problem? or how the car is programmed?
    I get really lousy gas mileage driving in city as well, about 14. I think that is connected with my auto tranny shifting at 2nd gear?
    I talked to dealer service writer. he has no idea if car should start in 1st or 2nd when in automatic mode!!.
    Not happy with this car. Any suggestions PLEASE.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    In automatic mode the tranny should start in 2. This is the most conservative mode of driving. You won't start to get optimal gas mileage until about 10,000 miles. If you want more zip, use sport mode, the tranny will start in 1st.

    I average about 24 in my day to day commute, which is about 10 miles local street driving and 10 miles highway. On the highway going a steady speed with a light foot* between 65-80 I average between 32-34.

    *light foot - avoid full throttle for every pass.
  • thanks for your response.
    why would they design to start in 2nd? I thought it would be conservative to start in 1st. because in 2nd you dont go that far with same amount of gas?
    i envy your mpg. best i have got in city is 15 and cruising hwy driving 26.
    is your 04 automatic 325i?
    would you recommend to change oil before their recommnded 15000 miles? does not make sense to me.
    since they pay for oil change, they may be cutting corners by changing at 15000 miles intervals. your thoughts please.
    anyway I appricate your input. thanks
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    I have a 2002 330i. I believe in following the manufacturers recommended maintainence schedule. Thus I had a 15K service, 30K service. No in-between oil changes.

    But I'd like to say you should do what you feel comfortable with. More oil changes won't hurt the car, only your wallet.
  • geneegenee Posts: 170
    My 2002 325i was stalling and idling rough on first starts in the morning. I complained to my service rep and he told me to burn regular. I asked for how many tanks ... He said, "Burn regular." There had been several complaints about this problem and the factory (regional) reps were called to the site and THEIR recommendation was to switch to regular. Since the switch no stalls and that wonderfully smooth idle has returned. I see no loss in power and very little change in mpg.
  • jajjaj Posts: 55
    On my new '04 325xi I've noticed that on any road with the slightest crown to it, the car will not hold a straight line if I let go of the wheel and will veer in the direction of the slant. Is this to be expected or might it be indicative of an alignment problem?
  • cartalkcartalk Posts: 133
    I have just noticed about 30+ thick, mustard yellow droplets on the garage floor coming from a 2 week old 330i. I intend on notifying the dealer and making a service appoinment, but have no idea what this stuff might be. Any ideas?
  • cartalk,

    That MAY be cosmoline. That is the yellowish gunk they spray on the engine and undercarriage to protect the car during transport from overseas. It protects the car from sea salt, etc. If so it may be heating up and dripping. They are suppose to remove it all during prep at the service center at the port of entry but they never get all of it.
  • paulepaule Posts: 382
    Drifting to the side that the crown drops off on is not an indication of an alignment problem. Try this: take your car to a flat parking lot and drive the same "path" 4-5 times. Chances are you will drift right one time and drift left the next or not drift at all. If you consistently see a drift to one side in a parking lot for 4-5 trips over the same path then I would have it checked. Otherwise, it's probably fine.
  • My 2003 325i died today in the midst of morning traffic. It completely shut down and then the "service engine soon" light appeared. I tried several times to restart the car with no avail. After waiting 30 min, the car did start again and ran with no problem. However, I am vary of driving the vehicle now. I have already contacted the dealership and I am taking the car in today. Only has around 14k miles to date. Anyone know what this problem could be?
  • I've got my money on camshaft position sensor.. Ours went out at 8K.. Which happened to be the third day we had the car, and the first day my wife drove it to work.. (seemed funny to me at the time... she has no sense of humor).

    If not that, then coils... Both simple fixes.. and usually no further problems.


    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • Any suggestions as to how to re-secure the interior door moldings on a 2000 328Ci that have begun to come loose? There's got to be a less costly alternative than completely replacing them which was what a BMW dealer suggested - at a cost of over $650!
  • erickplerickpl Posts: 2,735
    but there may be plastics clips/pins you can replace. I had a similar problem with my Grand Cherokee and got generic clips from a hardware store. They are very secure now.

  • My wifes BMW 530i w/ sport pkg has extreme wear on the inside edge of both rear tires and on front. With 24K miles I've never seen tires go bad this quick. I believe there is a flaw in the suspension or alignment system (?) Anyone else with similar problems? We are replacing all four tires currently, any suggestions on what type. PS she is not an aggressive driver.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I'll start with your last comment first; maybe she should be more aggressive. ;-)

    Two things are conspiring against your car: 1) the performance tires included in the Sport Package are of a softer stickier rubber than standard All-Season rubber (found on non SP equipped cars) and 2) BMW sets up their suspensions (especially the Sport Suspension) in such a way as to enhance handling, at the expense of tire wear.

    I too have a 530i with the SP, and I will be happy to get 24K miles on my tires. Some folks get as much as 30-35K miles, others get as little as 8K but I believe the norm is between 20K and 25K miles. My previous BMW did not have the SP and when I turned it in at the end of the lease it had well over 40K miles on the original rubber with plenty to spare.

    A final thought, ever since I can remember, BMW has been including the following text in their sales literature regarding cars equipped with the Sport Packages, "Due to low-profile tire, please note: wheels, tires and suspension parts are more susceptible to road hazard and consequential damages."

    FWIW, I have always sort of translated "consequential damages" to mean "accelerated wear", and not just of the tires either.

    Best Regards,
  • Re: Tire recommendation..

    I see you live in Lexington.. Do you put winter tires on her car, or does she go year round on the stock tires?


    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • In summer 02 the driver's side molding on my 00 323CI came loose, it was fixed under warranty, in 03 the passenger side came loose, again fixed under warranty. The car went off warranty in Sept 03 and a couple weeks later the driver's side came down again. Here's what I did:
    At AutoZone bought a tube of 3M Plastic Emblem and Trim Adhesive. I then bought three 4" clamps, got a ruler, towels, newspaper, bucket and some soapy water. I cleaned the inside of the molding, getting as much old glue out as I could, then I covered the door (to avoid scratches in case a clamp were to come loose and fall). I liberally applied the glue into the molding (not too much you don't want it squishing out when you press the molding back into place, but plenty enough to set and hold). I wrapped the ruler into newspaper and pressed it against the molding to hold it into place, then I put newspaper over the chrome trim area outside the top of the window (so the clamps wouldn't scratch the car)and clamped the ruler firmly, you will have to be careful here so the clamps don't hurt your car. I left it clamped for about an hour then removed them and the molding was back in firm. I've had no trouble since. The 3M is great stuff! If you do it as I did you shouldn't have much trouble though your car looks Yugoish with the newspaper, clamps and towels hanging off it but hopefully you won't be visiting a dealer concerning this particular shortcoming. I've read several posts from different forums concerning this problem. I hope this helps.
  • I hope anyone can help me. I have had this problem for over 7 months now. When is raining and I start my windshield wipers they run wel for about 1-3 minutes then then suddendly stop, most time ins the middle of the windshiel further obstructing view while driving.
    I have been in pretty dangerous drives with terrible rain and could not see the highway or road I was driving in. The only way to make them start is getting off the road and turning engine off. But once they start again, then they stop. My mechanic tried replacing the windshield motor but the problem continues. I have never heard of something like this. My mechanic kept the car for over 2 days running the windshield while pouring water over it and he said they never stopped. Anyone out there can help? Mabel
  • It sounds like a loose ground wire. I had the same experience and found that the ground wire on the wiper switch was loose and it created an intermittent total loss of all wiper action. I had to remove the steering wheel to get to it and tightening the terminal screw correct the problem.
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