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  1. #1
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    HPFP recall? - interesting article

    http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/au...ompa/19560998/


    BMW's Engine Problems: A Safety Risk to Drivers -- and the Company?

    See full article from DailyFinance: http://srph.it/apFnNs

    Suddenly losing your car's engine power is no doubt a harrowing experience, especially if you're on the highway. But that's what some BMW owners are saying has happened to them. After what Toyota (TM) has gone through this year with massive safety recalls, if such a problem is as widespread as it seems, BMW may already be late in getting in front of the problem. The luxury carmaker says it has not heard of cases where the engine lost power on the highway.

    The first I heard of this potential problem was Monday, July 19, when I received an email from BMW owner Allison Mangot, who lives in the New York City area. She contacted me after reading a DailyFinance article I had written about Toyota. When I spoke with Mangot, she was clearly upset about the incident she experienced. In May 2010, she was driving her 2008 BMW 535xi wagon, and she says the engine simply stopped working.

    She was still upset when we spoke because the day before, July 18, her husband was driving his 2009 BMW 335xi convertible on the Cross Bronx Expressway on a congested Sunday afternoon when New Yorkers were returning from weekend trips, and his car's engine stopped while he was in the left lane driving 55 mph. Fortunately for all involved, he was able to keep the car rolling long enough to pull it off the road without any injury.

    It "Put My Family's Life in Danger"

    It turns out Mangot and her husband aren't the only ones to claim problems with these cars. I've checked the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA) Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) website, which lists complaints from the public about different vehicles. I counted 38 nearly identical complaints regarding BMW 335 and 535 models from 2007 to 2010, most of which mentioned problems with the "high-pressure fuel pump" (HPFP) used in these models' engines. Here are three typical ones, with excerpts from the actual consumer complaints (the ODI complaint number is in parentheses):

    Engine suddenly shut off. Lost power steering on freeway while going 65 MPH (10304620).
    High pressure fuel pump malfunctioned while merging on a freeway on-ramp, resulting in a near rear-end collision as the vehicle suddenly slowed due to the malfunction (10217997).
    Malfunctioned coming off of the freeway in Los Angeles resulting in complete loss of power. This has put me and my family's life in danger (10243352).
    A failed fuel pump could easily cause an engine to stop running or to run erratically at best. After all, if there's a problem with getting fuel into the engine's cylinders, the motor will be starved, leading it to suffer reduced power, erratic running or potentially stalling out completely. According to NHTSA's safercar.gov site, BMW has not initiated a recall nor is NHTSA investigating this problem now.

    Beware of "Drivability Symptoms"

    However, BMW is aware of fuel pump problems because it has issued so-called Technical Service Bulletins to its service departments for the BMW 335i. Here are links to two such bulletins -- one for vehicles made June through October 2006 and another for vehicles made in Jan. 2007. There may be more. The TSBs are carefully worded to suggest that the failed HPFPs cause "drivability symptoms."

    And in May 2010, BMW issued a TSB that extended the HPFP warranty from "4 years or 50,000 miles to 10 years or 120,000 miles, whichever come first." But this does not mean BMW owners are satisfied -- after all, as of July 23, more than 360 of them have signed an online petition entitled "BMW No More Fuel Pump Failures."

    Arthur C. Wheaton, director of the Western N.Y. Labor and Environmental Programs at Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations, says the existence of these TSBs indicates that BMW has communicated with NHTSA and "is in full compliance with the law."

    Overwhelmed by Toyota Recalls?

    However, Clarence Ditmar, director of the Center for Auto Safety, says with nearly 40 fuel pump problems on the BMW 335 and 535 series already reported to NHTSA, he would expect the agency to conduct an investigation. He thinks it may not have started one because it's so overwhelmed with Toyota's recalls.

    And it's not like NHTSA doesn't know about the problem. On April 28, 2008, it launched an investigation into the BMW 335i HPFPs -- the failure of which caused problems, including complete engine stall on the highway. The details of this investigation are available on NHTSA's safercar.gov site. To view them, key in the NHTSA Action Number PE08032 and then click the document search button.

    This site documents the 2008 investigation. For example, NHTSA obtained from BMW a list of 718 HPFP complaints from 335i owners (note: this is an extremely large download of a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet) between Oct. 18, 2006, and May 19, 2008. NHTSA closed the investigation on Aug. 15, 2008, because the engines stalled in only 4% of the complaints.

    NHTSA decided at that time that "further investigation of this matter would not be an efficient allocation of agency resources." However, it added: "The closing of this investigation does not constitute a finding by NHTSA that a safety-related defect does not exist."

    Is It a "Known Safety Defect"?

    Wheaton says he thinks the recent BMW complaints aren't yet significant enough to get NHTSA's attention because there have been no reports of death or injury. However, he also says that if BMW doesn't have a complete fix for the problem, then it would be a so-called Known Safety Defect -- requiring BMW to stop selling all vehicles affected. This outcome would be far more costly than a recall.

    Nevertheless, as long as there has been no "serious risk to life or limb," Wheaton doesn't think BMW will feel any sense of urgency. If NHTSA does end up investigating the problem and requires BMW to recall the affected vehicles, he thinks the carmaker might decide to "send a message that 'We value our customers, so we'll voluntarily go beyond what NHTSA required to make sure all affected vehicles are up to snuff.'" But that remains to be seen.

    NHTSA's site describes how it decides on vehicle recalls. Here's an excerpt: "Generally, a safety defect is defined as a problem that exists in a motor vehicle or item of motor vehicle equipment that:

    Poses a risk to motor vehicle safety, and
    May exist in a group of vehicles of the same design or manufacture, or items of equipment of the same type and manufacture."
    If a car suddenly loses power on the highway -- or on any busy road -- and the cars behind it aren't paying attention, they could easily hit that decelerating vehicle. This sounds like a safety risk. And the complaints with the BMW 335 and 535 suggest that the problem exists in a group of vehicles.

    NHTSA declined to comment beyond what's on its website. BMW's David Buchko said that fuel pump malfunctions might cause long 'crank times' to start the engine or cause the engine to go into 'limp mode' -- in which the car slows down but does not stop so the driver can safely pull over to the side of the road. However, Buchko said that he had not heard of any cases where the engine stalled because of the fuel pump so he could not comment on that.

    It's a blessing that nobody has been seriously hurt so far from this problem. But even if only 4% of the cars with faulty fuel pumps actually stall because of the malfunction, it seems it's just a matter of time before someone in that small group becomes truly unlucky.

    See full article from DailyFinance: http://srph.it/apFnNs
    current: '12 E92 M3

    past: '09 335i E92
    best 1/4 ET: 12.47 on street tires
    best 1/4 trap speed: 115mph

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    If BMW is convinced they would lose more money from a lawsuit that would stem from injury/death due to an accident caused by a failing HPFP than it would cost to do a recall, they will do a recall.

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    they should find a $#@!ing fix, its pathetic, worse in a timeline POV then the oil spill! but obviously less disastrous lol. im lucky i had forums to help me when i saw signs of my first pump dieing (long cranks in the morning). i changed to the new generation at the time (3rd gen) and its been fine ever since. how many iterations have come out? how many times before they get it right? see my analogy to the spill now? lol

    oh i forgot a point, its not only tuned cars who experience the problem, so there's something fishy, either in the gas or in the seals.
    Click here to enlarge
    2007 335i Coupe
    Mods: Check the Garage

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    I like how BMW wants to wait for people to die to fix the pump.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    Man do i love old bmw's more when reading things like this.
    Click here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

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    I just love older cars in general. 10x more reliable than newer cars will ever be. New $#@! is made to be leased for 3 years, turned in, and move on. Thats what society has become, the throw away society, so $#@! wont last.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    I just love older cars in general. 10x more reliable than newer cars will ever be. New $#@! is made to be leased for 3 years, turned in, and move on. Thats what society has become, the throw away society, so $#@! wont last.
    To an extent this is very true.

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    It's sad, dollars and cents rules at the end of the day, not the safety of individuals that have supported BMW by buying their vehicles and in effect, making sure that BMW has money to put food on their worker's tables.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by encinitas Click here to enlarge
    It's sad, dollars and cents rules at the end of the day, not the safety of individuals that have supported BMW by buying their vehicles and in effect, making sure that BMW has money to put food on their worker's tables.
    Human life doesn't have the same value it once did, especially considering this past century has been the bloodiest in human history.

    We also are not dealing with the same BMW we once were.

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    [QUOTE=Sticky;42848]Human life doesn't have the same value it once did, especially considering this past century has been the bloodiest in human history.

    VERY IMPORTANT
    Guys there is a an online petition to get our voices heard about the HPFP problems with our cars..PLEASE spread this around..get as many people to sign as possible.. I just did
    http://www.petitiononline.com/fixpump/petition.html
    Also this problem is finally starting to get some media attention so we need to make a stink to the rest of the world and not just here on the forums. Its a link in the article in the OP

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    signed, even though i've never had a fuel pump issue in my whole 46k miles. i'm sure i will at some point though

  12. #12
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    I signed too, 1 pump dead, but new software and pump and I've been good for 8,000 miles so far.

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    How this freaking fuel pump issue be so damn complicated. Fix it BMW...

    Stage 2 or 2.5 E9X M3 S65 V8 supercharger kit for sale
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  14. #14
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    i like some of the complaints....'lost power steering, almost caused an accident'

    To me this is a little bogus...I lost power steering when I blew the serp belt off the front of the engine, it wasnt all that bad to turn the wheel. Maybe for 90 year old Aunt Ethel whos driving her 5 series, but Ive driven many an unassisted rack and never really had an issue with it....including the days of owning a Honda where it was 'cool' to take the power steering out of the car but leave the rack (12 years ago)

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    How this freaking fuel pump issue be so damn complicated. Fix it BMW...
    in europe I almost never hear of this problem. Im convinced its all the additives that they put in the fuel here and the damn ethanol thats eating everything alive. During the winter of 06 and 07 when I was at the dealer I used to go through a rash of replacing intank pump assemblies in X3s due to the large amounts of ethanol eating away the metallic strip on the fuel level sender. Your X3 would say you have 60 miles remaining and just sputter and die, the tank being bone dry.

    Ive come to believe that most regular BMW owners are cheap as everyone else is and put the cheapest 87 gas in they can find, even though the car specifies higher. We had a no name gas station next to my dealer and people would fill up there all the time, go down the road and the car would shut off. The EPA or whoever it was came down to inspect the tanks and found absurdly high levels of ethanol in the tank (+15%)..they were buying the cheapest gas on the market that day that was from some no name supplier that isnt blended properly...we had to put a notice up saying to not buy from the place next door due to poor quality gas.

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    it cant be because some go thousands of miles, while others cant go a thousand miles.. there is more to it than that.. BUT since i am still on some old software, i do now, press the button, wait 2-3 seconds before pressing again to start, just to ensure its primed..

    BTW,

    I bought my car used with 48k miles, original pump was replaced @ 44k dealer said, i have had no issues to date with cars 2nd/my first pump.. I DD like a grandma 98% of the time, but when i do drive, I beat it up pretty good, as you can probably tell

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Matt@Camber-Toe Click here to enlarge
    in europe I almost never hear of this problem. Im convinced its all the additives that they put in the fuel here and the damn ethanol thats eating everything alive. During the winter of 06 and 07 when I was at the dealer I used to go through a rash of replacing intank pump assemblies in X3s due to the large amounts of ethanol eating away the metallic strip on the fuel level sender. Your X3 would say you have 60 miles remaining and just sputter and die, the tank being bone dry.

    Ive come to believe that most regular BMW owners are cheap as everyone else is and put the cheapest 87 gas in they can find, even though the car specifies higher. We had a no name gas station next to my dealer and people would fill up there all the time, go down the road and the car would shut off. The EPA or whoever it was came down to inspect the tanks and found absurdly high levels of ethanol in the tank (+15%)..they were buying the cheapest gas on the market that day that was from some no name supplier that isnt blended properly...we had to put a notice up saying to not buy from the place next door due to poor quality gas.
    I can tell you I used 93 shell gas since i bought the car and ran a bottle of techron through the system every 5000 miles and still had one fail at 13000miles.

    The low pressure pump is the one that sits in the tank and feeds the high pressure pump which sits right under the air box and pressurizes fuel approx 3000 psi.. its the ridcuolusly hi pressure tolerances and BMW having not engineered the pump correctly to handle this pressure..hence all the part # revisions..at least thats the most plauisble theory out there now and.. the question of ethanol would not be an issue especially with the majority of these these being low mileage HPFP failures. This is a BMW engineering snafu..n they r ofcourse not gonna come out say that..but the evidence is overwhelming and I suspect only the lowest # of people who own a BMW would put 87 octane gas..n ESPECIALLY with the twin turbo and high compression rate of the N54 engine..u would most certainly develop pinging and knocking..cause the car to possibly go into limp mode.,.these are not like any of the other engines ever produced by BMW so there is definite learning curve right here..the last time BMW had a turbo production car was over 20 years ago. But damn when they are running right they are a joy to drive

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by LostMarine Click here to enlarge
    it cant be because some go thousands of miles, while others cant go a thousand miles.. there is more to it than that.. BUT since i am still on some old software, i do now, press the button, wait 2-3 seconds before pressing again to start, just to ensure its primed..

    BTW,

    I bought my car used with 48k miles, original pump was replaced @ 44k dealer said, i have had no issues to date with cars 2nd/my first pump.. I DD like a grandma 98% of the time, but when i do drive, I beat it up pretty good, as you can probably tell

    I would definitly get the latest software...I was on almost the first software cause my car is an 9/06 production..v23.2...I got on v38 after I had some misfires and it definitly primes the HPFP beacuase the car starts up more robustly and doesnt run rough during the first 10-20 seconds rough like it use to..the only thing i would caution is when u get the new software will feel like the car has more lag or is shifting weird..trick is to get ON IT like u stole the car..the computer/software adapts to that driving characteristic and ur car will def feel stronger.

    I got my car out of the dealer w the new software it was an absolute dog... ridcuolus lag until like 2500 rpm..I was pissed b/c my car was a beast before I took it in..so I threw a bottle of Techron and 10 gallons 100 octane Sunoco ..n let her rip for about a 100 miles..highway/street driving...The car DEFINITLY adapts..i got my cars charteristics back and little to no turbo lag

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