Question about 1995 BMW 3 Series

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Is it cold weather??? Please help!

I just drove from Los Angeles, CA to Raleigh, NC. and I own a 1994 318i. It's been really cold out here and even snowed yesterday. This morning I tried to start and the car would't stay on unless I pressed on the gas pedal. The second I would let my foot go, the car would just shut down on me. I don't know if that means... Can it be the weather? or as ignorant as it may sound, do i need an oil change? Please help!!!

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Most probably you need to warm up the car with foot on gas pedal, go to nearest gas station, put higher grade fuel in and add octane booster or fuel injector cleaner. It sounds like engine is not getting enough fuel. There are a lot of reasons (fuel lines problems, faulty idle control module etc). But might be just water condensation in fuel lines or low fuel evaporation when car is cold. Try this if it wont help you will need to change spark plugs.
Good Luck

Posted on Feb 05, 2009

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Hi Natalie, You may be on the right track with the oil change, although I would bet there is something else causing the problem.  It really depends on what viscosity (thickness) of oil you are currently using, but an oil you would use in the summer here in California is much thicker than what you would use in the winter back east.  It may be worth the $35 or $40 to get the oil changed and see if there is an improvement.  If you take it to a "quicky-lube" type of service, they will check the air filter and a few other basic items which may be causing a problem, otherwise you will need to get it into a real repair shop, but I would try the oil first. 
Your car is fuel injected, so it is designed to compensate for temperature changes, so unless something isn't working properly it should be working fine in that environment.

Posted on Feb 05, 2009

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Hi Natalie

I expect the cold temperature has a lot to do with your problem.

Suspect you could have a problem on the cold start system, on the fuel injection, possibly engine temp sender ? not bringing in the cold start fully.

Another possibility is an air leak, on a hose on the injection system.

Best bet is to just sit in the car, and bring the engine up to normal temperature, with foot on throttle at 1000rpm, before driving off.

You can see what happens when you return to Los Angeles, and with luck, the problem might not reoccur ?

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Posted on Feb 05, 2009

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