16vCorey PowerDork
Jan. 8, 2014 2:43 p.m.

My brother-in-law lives in DC with a '93 325i. Today the battery was dead so he tried to jump it, and it still wouldn't start. It would crank, but not start. He had it towed to a shop down the street, and they told him "The electrical system is not holding a charge, the water pump is going, and the fuel delivery system has an issue." That sounds to me like bad battery, leaky water pump, and maybe frozen moisture in the fuel. It seems like a new battery and some Heat would take care of most of his problems, especially since he hasn't noticed any loss of coolant. They want $1100 to fix it. He said they were able to get it started and running, but it still needed a lot of work. I think he needs a second opinion.

He's definitely willing to pay for repairs, but is a bit tight on money right now. He also said the tires are iffy and there's a noise that he'd like to identify in the engine (I'm guessing VANOS noise) too, so he's not sure if it's worth fixing. If there's any local BMW gurus that could help him out, I'll owe you big.

irish44j PowerDork
Jan. 8, 2014 7:41 p.m.

I'm not really available in the next couple weeks due to other commitments, but if he doesn't find anyone, have him call my buddy Viet at (703) 409-0640 (Dangerous Motorwerkes). He's in Northern Va and is very experienced with BMWs (e30s in particular, but other models as well) and does great work for a good price, and is generally a good guy that won't try to rip him off. Tell him to tell Viet that Josh (irish44j) suggested him.

16vCorey PowerDork
Jan. 9, 2014 8:16 a.m.

Thanks! I'll pass that info along to him!

Jan. 9, 2014 9:17 a.m.

If they got it started... tell him to go drive it elsewhere.

Add dry gas, stop at autozone and pick up a battery on the way home. He possibly needs a new vreg module for his alternator. They are separate so you can swap them out - $42

http://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-voltage-regulator-e36-hella-12321739435

Then, if his cooling system isn't up to snuff have him order this... http://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-cooling-system-kit-e36-e36coolingkit

And buy a local guy beers to point and explain for the 2hrs it takes to install everything. I'm too far away - but that entire cooling system can be done in an hour. with just a fan nut wrench, screw driver, wire cutters, a 10mm & 13mm wrench. The 2nd hour was for the battery, v-reg and time spent bullE36 M3ting and finishing the 12 pack.

$600 covers the whole ball of wax including the battery.

D_Eclipse9916
D_Eclipse9916 New Reader
Jan. 9, 2014 10:22 a.m.
irish44j wrote: call my buddy Viet at (703) 409-0640 (Dangerous Motorwerkes). He's in Northern Va and is very experienced with BMWs (e30s in particular, but other models as well) and does great work for a good price, and is generally a good guy that won't try to rip him off. Tell him to tell Viet that Josh (irish44j) suggested him.

I second that, Viet is a nice guy. I would offer but I am currently stuffed with projects.

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