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Old 22nd April 2011, 02:16 PM   #41
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the ticking seems to be behind the front drivers side wheel someplace.

Yeah the car hums like a beast in higher gears

how do you clean the injectors? is there a diy on here?


What shall i use? Mr sheen or sumin?
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Old 22nd April 2011, 06:57 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Hitman View Post
the ticking seems to be behind the front drivers side wheel someplace.

Yeah the car hums like a beast in higher gears

how do you clean the injectors? is there a diy on here?


What shall i use? Mr sheen or sumin?
Just get some redex petrol cleaner from halford etc and try the bottle with 2 tank fulls and see if it gets any better.
Won't do any harm cleaning the fuel system if it isn't the problem.
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Old 29th November 2011, 04:28 PM   #43
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Default Help please 2002 m3 misfire

Hi to all on here. I am the proud but skint owner of a 2002 m3. After my previous car being a mk5 golf gti turbo @ 270bhp, i can safely say that these M3's produce more smiles per gallon but defo less miles!! I am experiencing serious problems with mine. After starting it up at work, i instantly felt a misfire under foot. Car did not drive as usual and had a "rattle". I drove home steadily hoping that noise would go and performance would improve... It didn't. After looking on the net, I discovered loads of problems with vanos bolts and the like. I managed to get a bmw technician to do an investigative foreigner. He found that my exhaust gear hub attached to the vanos had sheared both locators off!! I had him replace both this and the vanos, checked all bolts and changed oil. Now when the car runs it is lumpy and noisey on tickover,but still drives at full (to my limited M3 knowledge) power. He has told me of misfire fault codes and carried out a compression test to reveal cylinders 1 and 2 are half that of the rest. From reading this thread, am i right to assume headgasket?? I am sceptical to have head investigated as i can't bear another bill with limited or no results. Please advise if poss and anyone in the midlands (Wolverhampton) area who could carry out work at a reasonable cost. Many thanks guys. 2002 m3 112k miles. Sorry,just thought i'd explain that i am using my mates log in, as he has had good results from this site. Again thanks.

Last edited by h8rna; 29th November 2011 at 04:29 PM. Reason: missing text
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Old 30th November 2011, 11:05 AM   #44
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Certainly the compression test seems to reveal there's a problem with either or both cylinders 1 and 2. Sounds like what ever you do, you'll need to take the head off which means a new gasket anyway. Could be that the gasket has failed between cylinders 1 and 2 or you could have a worn valve seat or guide or a sticking valve in either cylinder. It could of course be a worn or sticking piston ring but that would have to be on both cylinders so perhaps less likely

Do you have the actual compression test results? i.e. the actual values for each cylinder?

You could have someone do a leak down test which should reveal more answers and tell you which is more likely - a headgasket or a valve issue. Again, though, either way I think you need to take the head off and investigate.

I'm sure M Thriller has done several of these (or knows a man who can, I can't remember) and he's based in Birmingham I think, give him a shout or keep your fingers crossed he reads this!

You can be skint when you buy an M3 I'm afraid.... at least not when you buy it, once you've spent a couple of grand on it, then you can be skint, but not right away! :-)
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Old 16th April 2012, 07:51 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by m thriller View Post
I thought i'd start this thread for some of the newbies and oldies who may be unaware of headgasket issues on the s54 engine as it can be a expensive problem to fix.

Don't panic as it isn't very common at the moment because most cars are still under 100k miles, but i bet u it will become more aparrent as the cars get older with higher miles.

So if your looking at buying a e46 m3 with higher (even low miles) this is one thing u should check for and i will explain below how to diagnose the problem.

A couple years ago when i bought my 1st e46 m3 it had this annoying rattle, which was more noticable in the higher gears between 3-5k.
I took it everywhere including Sytner main dealers in brum (Stupid tech said it was engine bearings and engine was knackered because it had 130k on it!) with no success apart from being told it was vanos/chain tensioner/ ICV/ bad bearings etc etc.
Their were tuners who wanted X amounts of money to investigate the problem but already knew what it was from the symptons.
After 2 months of faffing about luckily a guy hit me and i got rid of the car.

See this original thread about my last M and symptons it suffered:
http://forums.m3cutters.co.uk/showthread.php?t=756

I have personally seen 4 cars which have had this problem and because off this recent thread below, i was reminded and thought i'd start this thread.

http://forums.m3cutters.co.uk/showthread.php?t=8811

As mentioned before, the rattling is the car pinking (det) and as i used to mess around with jap cars i knew this sound but was a newbie to the s54 and kept getting told that they make all kinds of sounds.
I even took my last M to a trackday at Donnington thinking it might be carbon but was baffled as i drove home and the pinking/rattling dissapered so thought this was true and all my probs had been sorted, but the following day the noise came back.
Luckily as above got rid of that car.

Anyway moving on a year or so i bought my current e46 M with over 100K miles.
Everything was fine but after about 3k miles i swear could hear a very faint ratttle, similar to my last M but alot quieter.
I only picked this up because i knew the sound from my last M and am very sensitive to iregular noises from the car.
U will hear this nosie mainly from 3rd gear upwards with only about 1/4 of throttle pressed accelerating between 3-5k as the engine noise gets so loud u wont hear anything past the rasp.
Funnily enough, if u boot it at FULL throttle it doesnt make this sound and what most people do when they test drive and think all is good.

If u dont know what det/pinking is, basically it sounds like marbles being shaken in a jar or spoons rattling on top of your engine....not good!
If u are getting pinking and no fault codes come, do a compression test.
This will show u if any of the cyclinders are loosing compression as per the recent thread above.
If u get 2 adjacent cyclinders with low pressure then u will most likely have a split their.
If this problem i not rectified, it can screw the head up and that means $$$$!
I have personally only seen this problem on cars over 100K miles including both mine and a mates vert.
The gasket is very thin between the cyclinders only a few mm thick and with miles gets brittle and cracks causing loss of power and compression.

The attachment is a pic of my mates headgasket, which he didnt even relise was cracked but i noticed when i drove his car.
His was extremely bad and was cracked between almost every cyclinder becasue he had been driving it like that for the last 4k miles!
His head was slightly warped so needed to be skimmed.
I had mine replaced early, so head was ok and below is a list of parts i had needed for the fix.

Parts needed to repair if head is ok from what i can remember:

headgasket
headbolts
vanos gasket
oil+filter
coolant
inlet and exhaust manifold gaskets
throttle bodie clips
.............................i had other few bits like chain tensioner/guide rails and oil pressure valve replaced because of mileage.

It cost me approx 700 to get it sorted including labour by my Indy who i know very well.
Was getting qouted 900-1300 for the same job without the extra few bits i had done from some tuners and Sytner wanted to replace the fecking engine!
I had my head de-coked/cleaned and then fitted and before my indy took the head off even he didnt think it could be the headgasket.
So as u can probably work out, this is another potential problem which u should look out with higher mile cars.
Fingers dead from typing lol!
Do you need to replace the rocker head gasket as well?
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Old 16th April 2012, 09:43 PM   #46
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Do you need to replace the rocker head gasket as well?
Depends when u last changed it.
90% of the cars we have done we never needed to change them but if its been a while since the inspec 2 then it might need one.
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Old 29th May 2012, 10:41 PM   #47
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114k miles and mine sounds like an electric motor! Only just run in by the sound of it.
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Old 29th May 2012, 10:45 PM   #48
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114k miles and mine sounds like an electric motor! Only just run in by the sound of it.
Buty knowin my luck, by next week it will be sounding like someone shakin a box of spanners.
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Old 29th November 2012, 08:27 AM   #49
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Yes common problem, Pinking, pinging, whatever noise you wanna call it. Dont be fooled by 'its an M3 tbey never blow gaskets' and have knocking sensors replaced, put injector cleaner in. Funniest remedy i was told by a bmw speacalist, was to reset the vanos. Pleeeease. If you experience pinging noise around 2-4 rpm whender load. Get ya headgasket replaced! Simple. I have been there!
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Old 29th November 2012, 10:13 PM   #50
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Yes common problem, Pinking, pinging, whatever noise you wanna call it. Dont be fooled by 'its an M3 tbey never blow gaskets' and have knocking sensors replaced, put injector cleaner in. Funniest remedy i was told by a bmw speacalist, was to reset the vanos. Pleeeease. If you experience pinging noise around 2-4 rpm whender load. Get ya headgasket replaced! Simple. I have been there!
LOL!......that reminds me of when my headgasket went a good few yers back...........think must have been 1 of the 1st in uk to have it happen and most so called indys came out with same scenario....vanos. knock sensors etc etc.
Like the man said, if u get rattle between 2-4k rpm then 99% its headgasket and compression test will tell u straighaway.
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Old 29th November 2012, 10:16 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by h8rna View Post
Hi to all on here. I am the proud but skint owner of a 2002 m3. After my previous car being a mk5 golf gti turbo @ 270bhp, i can safely say that these M3's produce more smiles per gallon but defo less miles!! I am experiencing serious problems with mine. After starting it up at work, i instantly felt a misfire under foot. Car did not drive as usual and had a "rattle". I drove home steadily hoping that noise would go and performance would improve... It didn't. After looking on the net, I discovered loads of problems with vanos bolts and the like. I managed to get a bmw technician to do an investigative foreigner. He found that my exhaust gear hub attached to the vanos had sheared both locators off!! I had him replace both this and the vanos, checked all bolts and changed oil. Now when the car runs it is lumpy and noisey on tickover,but still drives at full (to my limited M3 knowledge) power. He has told me of misfire fault codes and carried out a compression test to reveal cylinders 1 and 2 are half that of the rest. From reading this thread, am i right to assume headgasket?? I am sceptical to have head investigated as i can't bear another bill with limited or no results. Please advise if poss and anyone in the midlands (Wolverhampton) area who could carry out work at a reasonable cost. Many thanks guys. 2002 m3 112k miles. Sorry,just thought i'd explain that i am using my mates log in, as he has had good results from this site. Again thanks.
sorry mate, completely missed your post.
Yes almost certanily sounds like headgasket but get a compression check done and pm results and i can confirm for you.

I get the whole job including all genuine bmw parts, tws oil, labour coolant etc etc done for around 900 cash.

We have done around 20 e46 m3 headgaskets now and currently have another members car here at the moment which should be finished for weekend.
I am in birmingham, so not far from you.
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Old 5th January 2013, 12:59 PM   #52
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Mine is at 102k and sounds as fresh as the day it left German shores, very informative post, thank you
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Old 30th January 2013, 08:10 PM   #53
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thanks for info
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Old 25th March 2013, 11:52 AM   #54
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How likely would this be on a well looked after lower mileage example?
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Old 3rd April 2013, 09:35 AM   #55
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Mine went and my car had less than 35k on the clock. Always had oil changed minimum of once per year, so can go on any car
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Old 3rd April 2013, 09:53 AM   #56
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Mine went and my car had less than 35k on the clock. Always had oil changed minimum of once per year, so can go on any car
That's bad luck. Id be fighting BMW for some compensation. But then again no one knows how it was driven before you got it
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Old 15th April 2013, 07:53 PM   #57
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This maybe a silly question but is it not possible to change the head gaskit as a serviceable item ??? i.e every 40k ?? or is it not that simple ??


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Old 15th April 2013, 08:09 PM   #58
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I would say, its not that sime unless you absolutly know what ya doing or have enough to do so!
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Old 15th April 2013, 08:32 PM   #59
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This maybe a silly question but is it not possible to change the head gaskit as a serviceable item ??? i.e every 40k ?? or is it not that simple ??


Mark
No mate. One head gasket change in a cars life is more than adequate. Its a labour intensive operation and the gasket alone is damn expensive and the bolts are not reused which are expensive aswell id imagine l knowing bmw.
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Old 16th April 2013, 08:36 PM   #60
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No mate. One head gasket change in a cars life is more than adequate. Its a labour intensive operation and the gasket alone is damn expensive and the bolts are not reused which are expensive aswell id imagine l knowing bmw.
So maybe at say at 100k would be worth it and arp bolts and new bearings and shells a mini rebuild !!


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