The power door locks in your BMW serve several purposes. The locks keep out intruders from stealing your car and any items inside it. They also keep passengers, such as young children, safely inside the car while it’s moving. It seems like a trivial and commonplace component of every vehicle, but when the lock mechanism begins to fail or malfunctions altogether, it can lead to frustration, loss of property, and even put you in a dangerous position.
The Components of a BMW’s Door Locks
Your BMW’s power door locks are a complex assembly of parts that work with the car’s electronic system. Modern vehicles use a key fob or code lock to enter the doors, such as pushing a button on the fob to unlock the driver’s side door only or all doors, depending on the owner’s choice of settings.
Once inside the vehicle, there are buttons to select to lock and unlock all the doors separately or simultaneously. This can prevent people from entering your vehicle or help keep children inside, should they pull on the door handle and accidentally open the door while the car is moving. If the mechanism fails to work properly, you and your passengers could be locked inside your car or locked out until you call for a tow to a garage for repairs.
Your BMW’s Key Fob
Most modern cars use a key fob lock and unlock their doors. Some even allow remote keyless entry without having to push the button. Simply being near the lock with the fob in your purse or pocket is enough to trigger the locking mechanism. While technology is exciting and helpful, it also means that electrical malfunctions can occur as well as sensor degradation. If your locks fail to respond to your command, you can try to replace the battery in the fob as a first option. These are usually easily found at a hardware store or sometimes even in the electrical aisle of a large grocery store. If this doesn’t seem to help the situation, replacement fobs can be purchased at dealerships and more affordably at BMW automotive centers.
The Door Lock Actuator
Your BMW’s door lock actuator is part of the electronic device that activates the locks when you choose. If your actuator is malfunctioning, you may hear a click or grinding noise but the door will not lock. The actuator must have functioning mechanical parts inside that are uninhibited and free to move. It also needs power to lock and unlock instead of the old-fashioned manual push/pull knob. If either the mechanical parts or the electrical circuit is malfunctioning, your door lock actuator will not work.
The electrical system in your BMW powers everything from your alternator, battery, dashboard, overhead lights, and your door locks. If your electrical wiring is frayed or has encountered water or liquid, such as a spill or driving through flooded roads, the fuses may blow to protect the system from further damage. If your fuse burns out or is tripped in the fuse box, you may be able to open the compartment and replace the fuse yourself. If you are not comfortable checking this or performing this repair, it is a quick procedure for your trusted BMW mechanic. They can also run a quick diagnostic check to make sure there aren’t other problems with the electrical system that will crop up if it goes undiagnosed.
Your BMW’s door locks can fail due to the wiring system. Your electrical wiring usually doesn’t degrade unless there is an outside problem like spilled liquid into the console, driving through flooded roads that allows water to get inside the wiring system, or following a collision, if there is a part that is rubbing against wiring and frays and/or severs the wiring completely. You may notice this problem as a gradual onset, such as the locks being responsive erratically. If you suspect something is amiss in your BMW, it’s in your best interest to take it to your trusted BMW automotive center for a quick inspection so you won’t be locked in or out of your car.
Turning Wrenches: Your BMW Specialist
If you are in need of service for your BMW, Turning Wrenches of Louisville, Kentucky is your go-to shop for expert help. Give us a call today if you need assistance with your door locks or if you want to schedule a service appointment. We look forward to earning your business.
Drivers of BMW automobiles expect a luxury car that functions above the rest and provides its comfort and style. The BMW brand has an enhanced HVAC system for optimal climate control. As summer is quickly approaching, this is not the time for the heating and cooling system to fail in your car. You must have a fully functioning HVAC system, and that includes using your air-conditioner when it is needed most.
HVAC stands for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. The HVAC blower in your BMW is responsible for pushing air through your vents to the cabin of your vehicle. This would include heat, air-conditioning, and warm air used to defrost your windows. This system is paramount to the comfort of the driver and the passengers in a BMW.
5 Signs Your HVAC Blower is Failing
Here are the top five signs that your HVAC blower in your BMW is failing. If your car exhibits any of these symptoms, you should contact your vehicle technician right away to set an appointment.
Unusual noises occur when the fan or defroster is on: One of the first things you may notice is that your car suddenly makes weird noises when the blower is on. The higher you have your blower, the louder the whirring sound
Little or no airflow: If you are lucky enough to catch this issue early, you may notice it is just not working as well as it used to. The airflow seems off. You may need to turn it up to a higher setting to get the appropriate amount of heat or air-conditioning, and sometimes it is still not enough. You may also notice it is taking your defrosters longer to do their job than before.
Will not run at all speeds: After the airflow is affected and gets worse, you may notice that it will no longer work at certain speeds. Once you turn it up to a higher speed, it just completely turns itself off.
Smoke coming from vents emits a foul smell: If you turn your blowers on and a terrible smell comes from your vents or even smoke pours out, you need service immediately. Pullover at a safe location and call your mechanic to arrange service and repair.
Does not turn on at all: Finally, you may notice it just stopped working. Regardless of what speed you are trying to use, there is no airflow at all. As a result, you can not heat or cool your cabin, and you can not even defrost your windows. You now have complete HVAC blower failure.
Causes of HVAC Blower Failure
There are three primary causes of failure in your HVAC blower:
Blower motor relay malfunction: The blower motor is inside of the HVAC system, and it controls the functions of the blower. If this piece breaks or malfunctions, you will have issues with temperature control in your BMW.
Wear and tear: Depending on the age of your vehicle, wear and tear can be one of the reasons this system is failing. Most car parts need replacement at some point, and your HVAC blower is no different. Many HVAC blowers last the lifetime of a vehicle, but they can break due to specific reasons, like repeated exposure to the elements, extreme hot or cold temperatures, or the parts wearing down over time.
Manufacturer Error: Even though BMW has high standards for their vehicles and the manufacturing process, accidents happen. Sometimes the issue with your HVAC system occurred with a subcontracted part before it even made it to your BMW dealership. There was no way to avoid this problem; you simply purchased the car with a manufacturer error. Typically, this happens due to a faulty part making it through their inspection
Contact Turning Wrenches in Louisville, KY for Assistance
BMWs are designed for unmatched reliability, extreme comfort, and a body design that exudes sophistication. BMW owners will want to maintain their beautiful model and make certain all its features are accessible on demand. If your window regulator fails, you will notice some major problems with security and safety.
There are several reasons your window regulator can malfunction or completely fail in BMW models. The regulator is made up of several components that can break, so it’s prudent for a BMW owner to learn about the different parts within your door that regulate the windows.
This way, you can recognize early warning signs of malfunction in order to prevent major issues from occurring when you least expect it. Read below for typical signs of a failing window regulator.
Typically, it’s a broken window regulator or a complete regulator failure that is responsible for issues in most BMW models, so it’s important to know the system components. These are just a few common causes of window regulator failure, and recognizing these early warning signs is a great way to prevent major, long-term problems from damaging your BMW.
Regulator Motor which Overheats
If you use the window repeatedly in succession, you can cause the window regulator to overheat. The motor will simply become too hot and render it useless. Once it cools, it will most likely work as designed again. For the period of time where it does not function, this could pose a security risk to you and your vehicle if the window is down and the motor will not raise the window. Conversely, if the window is up and you need to use it to exit the vehicle in a collision, this could be a danger to you and your passengers. This is why it is always advisable to ensure your windows are working properly at your command.
Temperature Issues: Frozen Components
Frozen components become a problem for BMW owners when the temperature outside drops below freezing or 30 degrees Fahrenheit. This problem usually occurs in older BMWs, where the regulator freezes to the window and it will not roll it up or down. It’s basically frozen in position until the temperature outside warms.
Most BMW owners know how their car sounds when it’s idle, when it’s accelerating, when it’s cruising, when the A/C cycles, and when the windows are rolling up and down. So if you notice unusual noises when you are using the window regulator, you should consider taking your BMW to a trusted specialist to ensure it’s functioning properly. Grinding noises while in motion is a sure indication of window regulator problems. If you hear this, try to bring your BMW to our garage as soon as you can conveniently schedule an appointment.
Turning Wrenches to Fix Your BMW’s Failing Window Regulator
Here at Turning Wrenches, we believe that as the owner of a vehicle as reliable and powerful as a BMW, ensuring its performance should be your number one priority. With this in mind, keeping all your parts up to date and keeping your vehicle properly maintained should be at the top of your to-do list. There are a number of issues that may arise which can turn into more serious down the line if not attended to, so tackling them the minute they appear is your best bet.
Turning Wrenches is your ideal auto solution with our specialization in European repair. We have proudly been serving clients around Louisville, KY since 2013, and our reputation as BMW specialists has only been increasing. We offer all services needed from simple oil changes to major engine repairs as well as the BMW-recommended routine maintenance guidelines.
We guarantee that we have the latest tools and most up-to-date knowledge to identify what is wrong with your BMW and then fix it quickly. We hope to satisfy your auto needs in a timely manner while also providing the highest quality of service. Give us a call today to see why we are the best in the business or come to our location to see why we are so trusted in the community. We look forward to earning your trust and business.
A mysterious sound coming from your car is every driver’s worst nightmare. The anxiety may even keep you off the road, as you don’t want to see any serious damage to your BMW.
This article is going to walk you through some of the common causes of that dreaded clicking sound, what to do when you hear it and the best place in Louisville to get the problem solved quickly and easily, the first time.
Possible Origins of the Sound
There are several different reasons your car may be clicking, so we’ve put together a list of the most common four causes of this noise in your BMW:
Valves Need Adjustment: The valves in your engine have to move at very high speed and at very precise intervals in order for the combustion process to happen efficiently. These valves allow for the intake of fuel and air into the cylinders, and the distances between the valve opening and the cam have to be just right. As these parts wear down, they may start to make a sound as they shift.
Low Oil Level: The oil in your vehicle is needed to cool and lubricate the many different moving parts in the engine. If the oil level is low, the valvetrain may create a clicking sound as it is not being lubricated enough. Low oil levels may be due to a leak in your engine, and if your car is overheating, it is likely that this is the cause.
Rod Knock: Does the clicking seem to speed up when you ramp up the RPMs in your Mercedes? If so, the sound may be caused by the connecting rod knocking around. Rod knock is usually caused by a bad or worn down bearing to the connecting rod, which allows the rod to move around more than it should.
Exhaust Manifold Leak: If the exhaust gases leak out of the exhaust manifold or a gasket, it will result in a ticking or knocking sound in your BMW. This problem is somewhat normal, but it should be fixed to ensure that harmful exhaust gases are properly expelled through the exhaust system.
There are several other potential causes of a knocking sound, and some of them are harmless. However, be sure to still check it out, as it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
What To Do If You Hear a Clicking Sound
As a driver, anything unfamiliar during your drive should be inspected. A knocking sound in your BMW could be a sign of a serious engine problem, such as a rod knock, which will require immediate and intensive repair work.
The first thing you should do is check your oil level, as this is the simplest fix and a very common one as well. If your BMW’s oil level is low, top it off and then inspect your engine for an oil leak.
If you determine that the clicking sound comes from issues with your car’s valvetrain, the problem may also be solved by getting your car to the appropriate oil level if the poor timing and distance is caused by a buildup of debris in the oil. If that doesn’t make the noise go away, you may need to adjust the rocker arms or install new shims.
We recommend that you visit a reputable BMW service center as soon as possible to prevent future damage to your vehicle. For those who are unable or unsure of how to go about any repairs, a good mechanic will be able to repair the issue if possible.
The Best BMW Service Center in Louisville
Your BMW needs to be treated with care during each and every repair, and that’s why Turning Wrenches in Louisville, Kentucky is the leading European auto expert in the area. Our experienced team of knowledgeable mechanics have the latest tools, knowledge, training, and determination to get the job done right and quickly.
As the owner of a vehicle as reliable and powerful as a BMW, ensuring this performance should be your number one priority. With this in mind, keeping all your parts up to date and keeping your vehicle properly maintained should be at the top of your to-do list. There are a number of issues that may arise which can turn into more serious issues down the line if not attended to, so tackling them the minute they appear is your best bet.
To that end, there are certain parts you should focus on fixing right away so that they don’t devolve into more serious problems. Doing so can help you maintain your car’s longevity and ensure that no additional problems develop.
One such issue that should be fixed right away is an alternator bracket seal being broken. To understand why this is an issue that needs to be fixed, we first need to look at what exactly the alternator seal bracket does.
What does the alternator seal bracket do?
The alternator seal bracket is a crucial component of your vehicle that keeps your alternator protected from leaks. As an overview, the alternator is the piece of machinery that allows the electricity to run throughout your car and power many components. With this in mind, you may be thinking that this is the battery’s function but it is the alternator.
Due to this function, the alternator is an extremely important part of your vehicle, and it would be damaged if oil were to leak into it. This is the exact function the alternator bracket seal serves. By stopping oil from leaking into the alternator, it prevents damage and allows the alternator to function as it normally would.
However, this seal doesn’t just stop oil from leaking into the alternator, but rather the engine as a whole. Oil is meant to be a lubricant for the engine and is not meant to be leaking outside of where it is supposed to be. Therefore, the oil running through your car should only be lubricating the engine and clearing it of debris, not dripping onto the floor.
With the above information in mind, take your vehicle into the shop immediately after noticing that something has gone wrong with the alternator seal bracket in your vehicle. Not doing so can leave your car vulnerable to extra damage and may prevent some parts from working as they should.
Signs of a Broken Alternator Seal Bracket
Spotting the signs that indicated when this important seal is broken is one of the most important things for any vehicle owner to do. Fortunately, there are a number of signs you can keep an eye out for that will tell you exactly when this occurs. Should you notice these signs, waste no time in heading to a repair shop.
You See Oil: Naturally, the best way to identify an oil leak is to see it with your own eyes. Check under the hood of your car if you suspect your vehicle is leaking oil and see if your suspicions are confirmed by a pool of dark liquid sitting on the ground.
Your Engine Loses Oil: The oil levels in your vehicle are very specific and are the reason you need to get your oil changed every so often. If you notice that your engine is losing oil far faster than normal, consider the possibility that your engine has a leak in the alternator seal bracket or somewhere else under the hood.
Oil-Pressure Light Activates: Similar to the check engine light, some BMWs have an oil-pressure light that can alert drivers when something goes wrong with the oil under the hood. It’s best not to ignore this light when it turns on and to take your car in right away so that you don’t lose more oil.
Turning Wrenches For Your BMW Needs
At Turning Wrenches, your satisfaction is our guarantee. We have experienced technicians who are used to working on BMWs and can have you back out on the road in no time at all. We’ve seen a broken alternator bracket seal before and can promise to be the solution you’re looking for. We work with clients around Louisville, KY, and would love to have the opportunity to help solve any problem you present to us.
Please give us a call or come on down and visit us to see why we are the best in the business. We sincerely look forward to earning your trust and patronage.
Of the many problems that can occur under the hood of a car, problems with the engine itself should be feared the most, especially on vehicles as reliable as BMW. The engine is the heart and soul of your vehicle. Any problem with the engine can potentially lead to engine failure or problems with other systems in your BMW.
Regardless of the cause, a sputtering engine is indicative of a serious problem within your vehicle’s engine. Any sputtering, even small sputters, should be looked at as a serious matter and should be a reason to take your car to be fixed without hesitation. Don’t allow the problem to spread to other areas of the car.
Causes of a Sputtering Engine
When it comes to the causes of a sputtering engine, the possibilities are potentially limitless but all serious. Fortunately, these can be identified fairly easily by any mechanic shop.
There are three major components that go into producing the optimal fuel reaction within the combustion bay: the filter, pump, and injectors. The filter ensures property flow of fuel and cleans the fuel, the pump moves fuel within the system, and the injectors spray specific amounts of fuel to the cylinder when needed. If any of these parts go bad, they may compromise the other parts and lead to improper fuel ratios. This could be a potential cause of engine sputtering.
The spark plugs on your vehicle are incredibly important and can become worn out over time. The spark plugs “spark” the air and fuel mixture within the engine. This drives the miniature explosion that sends the piston flying back down. If your spark plugs have become worn out, this reaction may not occur when it should or even at all. This would also lead your engine to sputter.
The catalytic converter is responsible for turning carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide in the vehicle. As more pollutants stay within the engine, they can negatively affect performance and the air within the combustion chamber. This reduced performance may take the form of a sputtering engine by not providing the engine with the proper clean air to fuel ratio that it needs.
Effects of a Sputtering Engine
A sputtering engine may not seem like a worrisome issue, but the effects of this problem are far-reaching and have harsher implications for the rest of the vehicle. Below are just a few of the negative effects that can arise from a sputtering engine.
Dirtier Fuel Injectors
As mentioned, the entire fuel system could be the cause of the engine sputtering within your BMW. When the fuel filter becomes dirty over time and is left unchecked by a continuously sputtering engine, the fuel injectors themselves may become dirtier. This leads to contaminated fuel entering the combustion chamber, resulting in more problems.
Dirty Mass Airflow Sensor
Another effect of a sputtering engine is a dirty mass airflow sensor. This component is what measures the amount of fuel and air in the vehicle. A sputtering engine can result in a dirtier sensor that fails to do its job properly, worsening the problem.
Exhaust System Leaks
As referenced, the catalytic converter may be the cause of a sputtering engine by letting harmful pollutants into the engine bay. It should be obvious to you when exhaust system leaks occur, as the sulfer smell may be extreme and smell rotten.
Turning Wrenches Can Help
Turning Wrenches is the auto solution for you with our specialization in European repair. We have proudly been serving clients around Louisville, KY since 2013, and our reputation as BMW specialists has only been increasing.
Our services run the gamut from simple oil repairs to major engine repairs. We guarantee that we have the latest tools and most up-to-date knowledge to identify why your BMW engine is sputtering and then fix it quickly.
We hope to satisfy your auto needs in a timely manner while also providing the highest quality of service. Give us a call today to see why we are the best in the business or come to our location to see why we are so trusted in the community. We look forward to earning your trust and business.
When you drive a BMW, you expect excellence above and beyond that of the average vehicle on the road. The brand is built on smooth performance, sleek style, and above all, mechanical perfection. When a BMW owner drives off the lot for the first time, they can expect nothing but excellence from their new vehicle.
That just makes it all the more jarring and frustrating when one of your engine’s parts calls it quits, be it a problem as big as a blown catalytic converter or as small as an oil leak. While it’s normal for your BMW to have some small fluid drips in and around the engine (such as condensation from the A/C system), what’s not normal is when you notice puddles of fluid beneath your BMW every morning. That begs the question: where is the oil coming from?
The Importance of Oil in Your Engine
Oil in your engine is responsible for cooling and lubricating all of the heated moving parts. Your oil makes sure that your engine does not overheat or wear out too quickly through normal use. Without it, you run the risk of severe and extensive engine damage that may result in your engine overheating.
Furthermore, without oil, the more heat-sensitive parts of your engine may break or crack after repeated exposure to hotter-than-normal temperatures.
Here are the most common locations of oil leaks in your BMW:
Oil pan gasket leaks
Perhaps the most common leak of all comes from the oil pan gasket. The oil pan in your BMW is where your oil sits when the vehicle is not in use, and therefore can accumulate sludge and mineral deposits over time from old or hot oil, which can wear at your oil pan gasket over time.
Valve cover gasket leaks
This is one of the most common locations to experience a leak in BMW. The valve cover gasket protects the rocker arms and valves at the top of the engine. Typically, valve cover gasket leaks are more common after 60,000 miles, although a defective gasket can leak much sooner.
Rear main seal leaks
The rear main seal tends to fail when the crankshaft of your BMW encounters too much wear. When that happens, the main seal may be unable to hold tight or it may be otherwise damaged and may begin to leak.
Timing cover gasket leaks
The timing cover gasket is the seal that protects the connection between the engine block and the timing cover. If the timing cover gasket is the issue, you may also notice that coolant is leaking as well.
Oil filter housing gasket leaks
If you notice that oil is leaking only on the left side of the engine or if it looks like it’s coming from the oil pan but not the oil pan gasket, the leak may actually be coming from the oil filter housing gasket.
Common Causes of Oil Leaks in Your BMW
The cause of your oil leak is dependent upon where the leak is coming from. However, some causes are more common than others:
Old age and high mileage are one of the most common causes of oil leaks in any vehicle, as the wear and tear over time causes some parts to fail.
Inconsistent oil changes and improper oil type can cause oil deposits to build up in your oil pan or other parts of your engine.
Rough driving habits can overexert your engine, which leads to the components of your engine potentially being damaged.
A loose filler cap usually occurs when the cap is improperly replaced after an oil change. This can cause oil to leak from your pan.
Turning Wrenches will Address Your Oil Leak in Louisville, KY
If you suspect you have an oil leak in your BMW, bring your baby to Turning Wrenches of Louisville, KY today. Our knowledgeable, friendly technicians have been working under the hood for decades with only the best diagnostic and repair tools available. Moreover, our dedication to fixing and restoring German-made cars to their best selves is unmatched in the Louisville area. We offer a 36-month/36,000-mile warranty on all parts and repairs, so you know that you’re protected until the time comes for your BMW’s next servicing. Call us today.
The reason why BMW is so well-regarded for the incredible driving and handling of their cars is largely thanks to their unique VANOS system. This high-tech part achieves what was thought impossible. It gives you the best of both worlds: smooth driving and increased power. The only true drawback to this part is when it fails, you notice it. A failed VANOS unit will contribute to a drastic decline in performance. Therefore, it is important you look after your BMW’s VANOS system and keep an eye out for the early signs of failure.
VVT units exist in many modern cars, but the VANOS system is unique to BMW cars and is the manufacturer’s rendition of this common part. BMW was one of the pioneers of VVT, and their first VANOS system was released in 1992. This changed the high-performance driving game for ever. Engine performance was dramatically increased through the reflexive manipulation of the intake and exhaust valves. Added bonuses were smooth idling and increased torque, which led to an all-round improvement in power, performance, and handling.
Additionally, the VANOS system can also regulate the flow of engine oil that the cam gears receive. It does this using solenoids, and this ensures that timing adjustments are made with the maximum level of precision. There are currently three types of VANOS systems: Single VANOS (1992 to 2002), Double VANOS (1999 to 2010), and Double VANOS with Valvetronic (2004 to 2015). So the age of your BMW will directly impact which type of VANOS system your vehicle uses.
Signs of VANOS System Failure
As previously mentioned, an overall decline in your BMW’s performance will likely indicate an underperforming VANOS unit. However, this decline may be subtle and happen over time, making it hard to notice. So, keep an eye out for the following signs:
1. Loss of Torque/Power
As the VANOS system boosts the power and torque created by your engine, if it is under performing, the power and torque output that your engine can achieve will be reduced.
2. Engine Hesitation When at Low RPM
Low RPM commonly occurs when idling, such as when in traffic or waiting at an intersection. When the VANOS system is lacklustre, the engine’s timing won’t be precisely regulated, resulting in both power loss and engine hesitation at low RPM.
3. Rough Idle
One of the great things about the VANOS system is how smoothly it makes your VANOS drive. Therefore, it’s common sense to expect that when the VANOS system becomes sub par, your car will drive much less smoothly. Also, rough idling is likely to occur.
4. Reduced Gas Mileage
The VANOS system is responsible for getting the very best in efficiency out of every part it interacts with. When it isn’t working properly, your engine won’t function at peak levels, which can result in increased fuel consumption.
5. Cold Start Problems
Many cars can struggle with cold starts, but add in a faulty VANOS system, and it’s likely you’ll find it much harder to wake up your BMW.
6. Stalling in Cold Weather
On a similar note, when winter hits and your VANOS system isn’t working, you can expect an increase rate of stalling and an unhappy, uncooperative engine system.
7. Generation of Fault Codes
Your BMW’s onboard computer (ECU) is likely to pick up on the overall reduction in engine performance and may generate error codes pertaining to the VANOS unit. If the problem becomes severe, the ECU will likely trigger the Engine Management Light (EML or check engine light).
8. Engine Goes Limp After Accelerating
Your engine works hardest when it accelerates. As the VANOS system helps make this easier by making sure timing is perfect, when the VANOS system is not operational, the engine will not be able to correctly regulate its timing. This typically results in a sharp decline in power post-acceleration and a limp engine.
You Can Rely on Us
Here at Turning Wrenches of Louisville, KY, we’re eager to help the BMW drivers with their VANOS problems. We want you to experience the very best that your BMW can offer, and we’ll make sure any problem we find is addressed and repaired to the highest standards. We look forward to speaking with you about your BMW and getting you back on the road safely and efficiently. Call us today to schedule an appointment or consultation.
All vehicles are incredibly complex machines, especially those which have been intelligently engineered and thoughtfully designed, such as BMW. Because of this, your car has a variety of systems in place to protect you and your car from the effects of severe part failure. One such system is the check engine warning light. Below, you can find out how the light works as well as the types of part failure which can cause it to illuminate.
What is the check engine light?
The Engine Management Light (EML) or check engine light is a warning indicator which is found on your BMW’s dashboard. It will illuminate when more severe issues are detected in your vehicle’s systems or parts which work with the engine and the connecting exhaust systems.
The engine management light connects directly to your BMW’s main computer, which is known as the ECU or Engine Control Unit. If the ECU detects an issue in one of the aforementioned systems, it will trigger the check engine light and send out an error code. This can be used to correctly diagnose and repair the problem.
How a driver should immediately respond to the EML depends on the severity of the issue. If the car still feels like its running fine, then lower your speed and drive it directly to a professional repair shop. However, if the EML lights up red or your car no longer feels safe, then pull over and call for a recovery vehicle to tow you to a repair shop.
Common Reasons Why the Check Engine Light may Illuminate
There are many reasons why this essential warning light may illuminate. Below, we have listed some of the most common reasons, how risky they are for your car, and how you should respond.
Vacuum Hose Leaks
Damage Level: Low Response: Lower your speed and locate the nearest auto shop.
Vacuum hoses are needed to channel both fresh air as well as emissions around the engine to allow it to run correctly. They’re made of rubber and can be exposed to high temperatures inside the engine which can lead to them cracking or deteriorating over time. When this happens, the precise balance of gases can be thrown off-kilter, leading to the engine’s sensors reporting issues to the ECU.
Loose Filler Cap
Damage Level: Low Response: Check the cap and replace as needed.
This issue is most commonly caused by drivers being distracted at the pumps and not correctly tightening their fuel cap. A loose cap allows extra air into the tank which distripts the pressure. This will cause one of the many sensors to detect an issue and inform the ECU. This is the most simple and most common cause for check engine light illumination and should always be ruled out first.
Fuel Pump Blockage
Damage Level: Medium Response: Lower your speed and locate the nearest auto shop.
The fuel pump is what provides pressurized fuel to the fuel injectors. If the pump isn’t working correctly, then the fuel will not be able to be properly delivered to the engine, causing rough running. The engine light will be illuminated by the ECU and your BMW will likely be at an increased risk of misfires.
Soot on the Particulate Filter
Damage Level: High What to do: Lower your speed and locate the nearest auto shop, or call for a tow.
The particulate filter is most commonly found in diesel models, but it is being introduced into gasoline cars too. The particulate filter is responsible for capturing the soot which is produced by the combustion process. If this filter becomes clogged, then this soot will settle inside the engine and start to contaminate the delicate parts inside. This issue needs to be resolved quickly as if the filter becomes damaged beyond repair, you are likely to be footing an expensive bill.
Turning Wrenches of Louisville, KY are experts in repairing, servicing, and maintaining European vehicles. We are open Monday through Friday to serve you. Our dedicated team will be able to diagnose and respond to your BMW’s issue quickly, efficiently, and affordably. Our friendly team is dedicated to making sure you drive away happy and safely. We are so confident in what we do that we offer a 3-year/36,000 mile warranty as a guarantee on our work. Call us today or stop by to speak to our technicians.