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Thread: Can I Ask a Car Question?

  1. #1
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    Can I Ask a Car Question?

    A bit odd to ask a car question here. But you guys have general motor knowledge and I trust the answers I get here more than at other sites so here it is.

    My car is a 2007 BMW 328i. It just went over 100,000 miles. I work at home and ride my motorcycles as much as possible so I only put about 5,000 miles a year on the car. At 100,000 miles, it is due for a spark plug change. Given that it was running fine and I do not put a lot of miles on the car, the BMW dealer said I would be fine to wait until the next oil change to change the spark plugs. It never hits the mileage for oil changes so I change the oil annually.

    This morning it was running a bit rough, had a service engine soon light on and exhaust was more visible than usual. I have two theories:

    1. I should go ahead and change the spark plugs. However, it seems unlikely to me that it would go from running fine to not overnight due to spark plugs. It seems like that would be a gradual issue that would slowly impact performance over time.

    2. So theory two is that the car has been sitting outside for a few days and we have had a lot of rain recently. I brought it into the garage last night. I am wondering if it is possible it got moisture into the system someplace and that is causing the problem. I am thinking that the visible exhaust is steam from running water out of the system. I am wondering if I ran it for a half hour or so, it would be back to running fine. And I am wondering if I risk any damage by running it for a half hour or so with it running a bit rough.

    I know it is difficult..... okay impossible to say anything definitive without examining the car. Feel free to speculate, all comments will be taken with appropriate disclaimers for limitation of internet speculation.

  2. #2
    Flirting With The Redline 8000 Posts! Trials's Avatar
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    Some dark, damp evening, pop the hood and take a look see if there are any sparks coming off your ignition wires.
    ... you might not want to reach in and touch those ones when it's running

  3. #3
    RiderCoach 8000 Posts! WoodstockJeff's Avatar
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    Does it use iridium plugs, by chance? The iridium plugs in my C14 need to be replaced, and the symptom is running rough when cold.
    Jeff

    "The future is so much easier to predict when you have a handle on how you arrived at now.... Works with traffic just as well as the rest of life. "

    "Modern Liberalism: The embodiment of an irrational fear of letting other people run their own lives."

    '13 XT250
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  4. #4
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    I do not know if it uses iridium plugs.

    Decided to take it to the dealer and let them figure it out.

  5. #5
    Flirting With The Redline 4000 Posts! taylorcraft07's Avatar
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    Take it to autozone and get the codes read. My Z3 did that same trick when the rubber boot from the mass airflow to the throttle body decided to start leaking.

    Dave

  6. #6
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    Turned out to be a coil.

  7. #7
    Moderator/RiderCoach We've stopped counting... Missy B's Avatar
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    Completely off track but my brother gave my daughter a 1993 BMW 318i and that thing is so much fun to drive. She has had it about a year and gets frustrated with manual (kids these days!), so my son drives it more than any of us. She did come home from work last week one night and wanted to go practice. She is getting there.
    CURRENT BIKES: 2014 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2016 Honda CBR500R
    PREVIOUS BIKES: 2002 Ninja 500, 2002 Kawi ZR-7S, 2002 Kawi Concours, 2003 Yamaha XT225, 2006 Yamaha FZ6, 2005 Suzuki Wee Strom, 2004 Honda CRF250R, Yamaha TTR250
    Test riding bikes since 2004.
    If loud pipes save lives, imagine what learning to RIDE that thing will do!

  8. #8
    Flirting With The Redline 2000 Posts! Sorg67's Avatar
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    Mine is a manual also. Really fun to drive. I made both my kids learn and take their drivers license test with a manual transmission .

  9. #9
    RiderCoach 8000 Posts! WoodstockJeff's Avatar
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    My dad taught the four youngest the kids to drive before we were 12... Off-road in a '41 Ford GP with a 3-speed crash box.

    Transmissions with syncros are far less irritating. But I wish my brother hadn't sold the GP...
    Jeff

    "The future is so much easier to predict when you have a handle on how you arrived at now.... Works with traffic just as well as the rest of life. "

    "Modern Liberalism: The embodiment of an irrational fear of letting other people run their own lives."

    '13 XT250
    '10 ZG-1400 (operational again)

  10. #10
    RiderCoach 4000 Posts! AZridered's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sorg67 View Post
    Turned out to be a coil.
    Coil issues can be really difficult to diagnose because symptoms can come and go with variations in temperature and humidity. Right up to the point where the coil finally fails. Then, it's easy.

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