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Thread: Hesitant Starting... Help.

  1. #1

    Hesitant Starting... Help.

    1998 E36 with 165,000 miles on the clock. Runs like a top. I just started having this problem maybe a week ago. When I start the car it takes longer than usual to start up. I can hear the starter turning the engine over just fine, but it just doesnt take right away.

    Here are my two guesses:
    1) Spark plugs need to be replaced? (Maybe I am just not getting the spark I need)
    2) Fuel Related. I though initially that I just had a bad batch of gas, but it has continued into my next tank so, maybe the pump/lines/pressregulator is going?

    What are your thoughts, I'll pull the plugs tonight after soccer. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Replaced the battery recently?

  3. #3
    Senior Member 1996 328ti's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Greenville, SC
    Mine is starting to act that way too. I notice the colder the morning, the longer it takes to start. I already bought a spare battery. Have been too lazy to replace it though.
    BMW CCA #146825 |

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Clifton, VA
    Other possibilities:

    Fuel pump

    Not sure if E36s are the same but with E30's it could be the three relays on the the fuse board. I just replace the 2 orange and one white at every other service 2 or so.

    Dave Apker

  5. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    South Riding
    Something else to consider; Gas now has Ethanol in it. Ethanol does not burn as easily under cold start conditions. I noticed that my 2003 330i was having a harder time starting from cold ever since the swith to 10% ethanol in the area. I have done a little research and am certainly no expert, just something to think about. The timing seems right.


  6. #6
    +1 on the Ethanol possibility

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Ethanol? Stupid hippies, they always ruin the fun.

  8. #8
    10% ethanol shoulds make that much difference.

    If it seems to be turning over slower, think battery.

    If it turns over normaly, but doesn't seem to start, its spark or fuel. I would start with fuel filter and plugs. Cheap, easy to do.

    Then on to things like fuel pump, coils, etc.

    One other thing to try, turn key ON, but don't start for 15 - 20 seconds. hen start. If it starts fine, it is the check valve that holds fuel under pressure in the injection system.
    Terry Carraway
    02 Topaz E46 M3 SMG
    00 Dakar M Roadster
    95 Alpine E36 M3 LTW
    SCCA Spec Racer Ford Red/White

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Oakton, VA
    Things to check - battery, plugs, coils, oxygen sensor.
    Rafael Garces
    NCC Street Survival Coordinator
    NCC Past President (2003-2005)
    '16 BMW 340i - Estoril Blue, M-Sport, Track Handling Package
    '13 Porsche Boxster S, Amaranth Red

  10. #10
    Junior Member datak9's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Fairfax, VA
    Same here. More cranking time in the mornings. +1 on the Ethanol gas.

  11. #11
    I would have to say maybe a headgasket. I believe every 100k miles you should change them. It seems that you put a lot of miles on it. Sounds like when its turning over its building up pressure to start it, thats way in the mornings it takes longer, and in the cold. Check for smoke, any kind of leaks like radiator fluid. Also if a good amount of water or anti-freeze is coming from the exhaust.

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