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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.


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Old Wed, May-19-2010, 08:13:27 AM   #1
BlkBimM3R
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Default Car stalls immediately on cold start, run's fine after re-start

I searched the forums for stalling and most of the threads seem to be about stalling when slowing down or always stalling, but no mention that it is fine afterwards.

I did my Inspection II about 2 weeks ago, car has 55k and I'm not sure if pulling the fuse for the fuel pump, and pressing the bleed valve on the fuel pressure regulator looking thing to expel fuel in the lines when I replaced my fuel filter had anything to do w/ this (M3forum was down and that's what people on other sites said to do) or if something else is wrong. I have no Check engine, Service Engine Soon, or Malfunction Indicator Lamp lights illuminated, car runs fine after it is started the 2nd time cold, no odd idle at stoplights, always starts the first time after the first cold start and stall.

After sitting overnight, w/ a cold engine when I go to start my car in the morning it starts, then shuts off and stalls immediately. I turn the key back to off, w/ the clutch depressed, start the car again and it always starts fine the 2nd time and I have no issues stalling for the rest of the day on my way to work, restarting to meet clients or get lunch, or the drive home. After the initial cold start and stall, the car always runs fine, starts on the first try and stays running. Let the car sit overnight, next morning, same thing.

W/ the inspection II the spark plugs are new, the air filter is new, fuel filter is new, along w/ the cabin filter, oil & oil filter, trans and diff fluid, etc, but the latter shouldn't have anything to do w/ stalling. I'm thinknig it is some air, fuel or spark issue. I'm running 91 octane gas which in Southern Ca IS our "premium" grade fuel. I did dump in a bottle of fuel system cleaner when I did my Inspection II w/ a full tank of fuel, am 1/2 tank into it. But w/ so many parts changed, I'm not sure what it could be. I'm going to run this tank to near empty, then fuel up w/ all new gas and see if it could be the Chevron w/ Techron fuel system cleaner. The car has never had a problem w/ the Chevron, 76, Shell, or Costco fuel I've fed it in the past.

It is on the same tank of gas before I did my Inspection II (short work commute) and didn't have this issue w/ this fuel before the Inspection II. Afterwards w/ the same tank and the fuel system cleaner and all the other parts changed for Inspection II it's had this problem every cold start/morning.

I'm going to try cleaning the MAF sensor when I pick up the CRC MAF sensor cleaner tomorrow although it was fine before just to rule out a dirty MAF sensor, run the tank down and fuel up w/ all new fuel, and see if that helps. Any other suggestions?

If I disconnect the battery for a couple minutes or overnight, then start the car up and let it idle does this reset the cars computer so it maybe relearns/resets itself and won't stall out? Car is completely stock. So this might or might not do anything.

The car didn't do this before I did the Inspection II, no codes, runs fine afterwards.. what could it be?

Last edited by BlkBimM3R; Wed, May-19-2010 at 08:55:15 AM.
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Old Wed, May-19-2010, 11:53:19 PM   #2
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I tried doing the MAF today before work and the Star/Torx drivers I had were not the "Tamper Proof"/Security type Torx T20 needed to remove the MAF from the intake housing. My existing Torx drivers were flat in the center.. you need the Tamper Proof/Security type w/ the dimple/indentation on the center to remove the MAF screws otherwise the tip won't slip into the screw.

On my lunch break I drove to Autozone and the employee didn't know what I was talking so I had to look through all their available tools. Just my luck their great neck 4 piece Tamper proof torx bit set was sold out (saw the tag on shelf but no product, they didn't have any in the back or anything. So I had to look through all their tool offerings and they had a Titan brand Tamper proof Torx bits set that slips into a screwdriver I had in the car.

cleaned the MAF, car feels more responsive but I'll have to wait until tomorrows cold start to see if I still have the initial start then stall symptom.

Quizno's is near a BMW shop so I decided to pick up lunch and ask the shop, they work by appointment only so couldn't take my car today but said maybe the fuel pump is bad...

For those of you that had faulty fuel pumps where these the symptoms? Dies on cold start, fires right up on the 2nd attempt... drives fine, and subsequent hot starts are fine... no SES or MIL (CE) codes...

I have about 1/4 tank more of the current fuel w/ the fuel system cleaner into it... after I drain the tank to where the car indicates I can travel 20 or less miles, I'll fuel it up w/ a full tank of Chevron or 76 91 octane and see if it was the fuel system cleaner in the current tank.
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Old Fri, May-21-2010, 11:17:12 PM   #3
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sounds like your fuel pump might be bad, not keeping enough pressure when left sitting for a long period of time. A good pump will hold enough pressure to start up the car after sitting for awhile. Check your fuel pressure to rule that one out
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Old Fri, May-21-2010, 11:19:56 PM   #4
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another way to possibly check your pump is try turning the switch on a off a few times to cycle the pump and let it build up pressure in the supply line. If your car starts up and doesn't die right after then your pump might have some issues
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Old Fri, May-21-2010, 11:24:13 PM   #5
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Might just be the gas... keep us updated after your next fill!
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Old Fri, May-21-2010, 11:30:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mredwin25 View Post
sounds like your fuel pump might be bad, not keeping enough pressure when left sitting for a long period of time. A good pump will hold enough pressure to start up the car after sitting for awhile. Check your fuel pressure to rule that one out
A mechanic told me the same thing yesterday. I'm having the exact same issues as the OP. Problems with first startups of the day, morning or night.

I will turn the key back and forth tomorrow and try to start the car and see if I can rule out the fuel pump as you suggested.
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Old Fri, May-21-2010, 11:56:36 PM   #7
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Maybe ignition coils.
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Old Sat, May-22-2010, 06:13:34 AM   #8
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My car was doing the same thing, before it would just stumble then after a few seconds idle fine then it got worse and would die right after and on the second start it was prefect. My fuel pump was also noticeably getting a louder whine over the course of a few months. I replaced the fuel pump and filter as I knew this was the issue and voila, all fixed.
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Old Sat, May-22-2010, 05:35:25 PM   #9
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might be the "summer gas"..
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Old Sat, May-22-2010, 08:03:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
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might be the "summer gas"..
^^ What he said.

For the second straight year mine has been doing the same thing. It happened last year this time too. After a couple of weeks of running this gas my car adapted to the stuff and ran fine all summer, fall, winter and early spring. Just started doing the same first cold start stumble last week.
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Discussing Car stalls immediately on cold start, run's fine after re-start 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 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)