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Thread: One or two cylinders not working in the morning

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    593

    Default One or two cylinders not working in the morning

    As in the title, early in the morning, after just starting the engine, one or two cylinders are not working. I say not working because the idle is rough. After the engine warms up a little (towards the end of the blue zone on the gauge), it smoothes out. The temperatures during the night is about -20C, in the morning about -15, -16C.

    What might be the culprit? I changed the sparks about two weeks ago to Beru Ultra. Beru website says these are exactly for my BMW.
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    RTP North Carolina
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    182

    Default My guess

    The Hydraulic Lifters. Until the oil fully pumps them up the engine the valves will not be opened all the way and will run rough. One other sign is the valve chatter when first cranked. Mine did it until I switched to a thinner oil. It also reduced valve chatter when the engine is first cranked. Since you stated the outside temp at being negative. I'd bet this is your case. What oil are you running?
    Last edited by smcgowan; 01-04-2006 at 08:20 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    4,148

    Default Yeah, i feel like 1 or 2 cylinder isn't working when i get up

    sometimes in the morning.. a couple of pepsi's usually takes care of that though.. In your case it could be the hydraulic valve adjusters not pumping up because the oil is too thick when cold. Switching to a 0w40 synthetic mobil one should help that if thats the case. If that is the case the valves will be tapping louder until it warms up also.. Otherwise on some cars it seems like the injectors are plugged up or stuck until the engine runs for a few minutes too. Running a couple of cans of good injector cleaner through should help if thats the case. It can also be vacum leaks at the intake manifold or somewhere in line from the mass air flow sensor to the engine. To test that you'd need to spray some throttle body cleaner around all the areas that it could leak such as manifold gaskets throttle body gaskets, vacum hoses etc with the engine running and cold when its missing, if it suddenly picks up the cylinder after you spray an area then you know where its at.

    Quote Originally Posted by t_marat
    As in the title, early in the morning, after just starting the engine, one or two cylinders are not working. I say not working because the idle is rough. After the engine warms up a little (towards the end of the blue zone on the gauge), it smoothes out. The temperatures during the night is about -20C, in the morning about -15, -16C.

    What might be the culprit? I changed the sparks about two weeks ago to Beru Ultra. Beru website says these are exactly for my BMW.
    Last edited by Bill R.; 01-04-2006 at 09:09 AM.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    593

    Default

    What type of throtle body cleaners do you use?
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    593

    Default

    The oil I am using is semisynthetic, 15W-30, Esso.

    I was told by the mechanic 0W-40 is too liquid for my car. That it will "consume" a lot of that oil.
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  6. #6
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    Mar 2005
    Location
    Bethlehem, PA
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    Default

    15W is pretty heavy for the temperatures you're seeing, not to mention that it's part dino oil. It wouldn't be too much of a stretch to imagine that lifters are the problem, though that diagnosis would be a lot more solid if you'd have posted what model car and engine you have. Unless your engine has a lot of wear on it, and/or you have reason to believe that oil consumption could become a problem, you might want to give M-1 0W-40 a shot. That's what I use in the Porsche and I can tell you that there's no hydraulic tappet problem at those low temperatures.

    Those "Beru" plugs. You sure that BMW lists those? Where is the gap set? When I had the 535 (M30) it didn't idle well at all unless the gap was .035 or so. That was with Bosch single platinum plugs.

  7. #7
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    Aug 2005
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    593

    Default

    My engine and car details are given in my signature.
    here is a link to beru website page listing Beru Ultra for my car, 520i 24V.
    It has two contacts on opposite sides. Manual lists spark plugs for my car to be non-adjustable, but Beru site lists them to be 0.9mm.
    Is it safe to try to adjust gaps on plugs with two side electrodes?
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    593

    Default

    Installation Information: Recommendation - When changing the spark plugs on vehicles with connector ignition coils, please replace the connector and use spark plug connector grease (ZKF 01 - Order No. 0 890 300 029) to fit the connector.
    Tightening Torque [Nm] 25
    Port Type SAE
    Thread Length [mm] 19
    Thread Size M 14x1,25
    Spanner Size 16 mm
    Spark Plug 2 - Earthed Electrode
    Electrode Gap [mm] 0,9

    What does "Spark Plug 2 - Earthed Electrode" mean? While putting in the new spark plugs I saw a connector for earthing (I guess). That should be connected to the second spark plug? It was connected to the first plug (if counting from left), and I left it there.
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    593

    Default

    A link describing Beru Ultra:
    http://www.beru.com/english/produkte...rzen/ultra.php

    The thing is it shows it to be with just one electrode. The ones I bought have two side electrodes. Is it possible that the image is simply a generic one?

    Ultra X plug picture shows 4 side electrodes.

    I am starting to think mine are fakes.
    1994 520i with M50 engine, manual transmission and air conditioner.
    VIN: GG45422

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    3,395

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SRR2
    Those "Beru" plugs. You sure that BMW lists those? Where is the gap set? When I had the 535 (M30) it didn't idle well at all unless the gap was .035 or so. That was with Bosch single platinum plugs.
    Steve, we beat this one into the ground last week. No fact or logic did any good

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