BMW M3 Forum
BMW M3 Forum BMW M3 Gallery BMW M3 Reviews BMW M3 Social Groups BMW M3 Chat M3Forum Sponsors >>

Mobile M3forum
Go Back   BMW M3 (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X) > BMW M3 Discussions > E46 M3 (2001-2006)
Tire Rack Buy Winter Tires Now!
Not a member? Register Now!
Register Gallery All Albums Garage Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Calendar FAQ

E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old Sun, Dec-10-2017, 10:47:41 PM   #1
Registered User
alexjames23's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 141
In the garage:
Reputation: 0 alexjames23 is on a distinguished road
Location: Central FL

United States

Default Car starts, then dies? Throwing TPS Codes? Clean your MAF.

Just want to help the E46M public with what seems like a common problem.

I'll try not to bore you all with the story, but my friend was prepping for a track day at PBIR. The car drove down to the track without a problem. Then on the paced laps, the car sputtered a little, then went into limp mode. Upon slowing down and coming to a stop, it died. When he tried to restart it, it would start then die completely (battery still on). Initially, no codes were popping up, then eventually we got a few...

Problem: Car starts, then immediately dies. Car throws codes for Throttle Position Sensor (P0121, P0123, P0221).

What would the next step be using common sense and logical thinking? Replace the TPS(s). Luckily my friend wasn't in any rush to get the car back up and running, so he avoided paying the stealerships $150 (Yes, Braman in West Palm charges this for a TPS).

After lots of scratching heads, and hours of replacing multiple TPSs, I resorted back to my bad start troubleshooting a few years back, which called for cleaning the Mass Air Flow Sensor (MAF). We removed the MAF, and it started and idled like it should. I would presume unplugging the MAF forces the ECU into open loop, so it just reads from tables instead of requiring feedback from sensors like O2 sensors and the MAF. Anyways..

Will this solve your problem? Simply unplug MAF > Start car. If it idles like normal, then read below. If not, I've heard other people with similar symptoms holding down the gas pedal during start, or unplugging battery for an hour to solve it - Try those.

Solution: Clean MAF with MAF cleaner thoroughly. If that doesn't work, replace MAF Sensor.

Hope this saves people with a similar problem lots of money and time in the future!

2002 M3 Cabrio SG / Cinnamon / 6MT / VMR V703s / MR Strut Bar / Headers / MR Muffler / Autopower Race Bar / B-Spec / Turner Pulleys / GC Street School / Bav SS Brake Lines / CDV delete / GC Endlinks

Last edited by alexjames23; Sun, Dec-10-2017 at 10:51:37 PM.
Jump to top alexjames23 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Register now and remove these ads


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT. The time now is 04:25:33 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd. and is in no way sponsored, endorsed or affiliated by or with BMW NA / BMW AG or any of it's subsidiaries or vendors.
BMW and M3 (E90 M3 | E92 M3 | E93 M3 | E46 M3 | E36 M3 | E30 M3) are registered trademarks of BMW AG.
M3Forum Terms of Service
Copyright 1999-2017
Discussing Just learned something new about our racks in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)