1991 525 Check Engine Lights Update

Still trying to do as much research and advance troubleshooting as possible. Went to a BMW dealer this morning. Master Tech replied, "Seems like car is only running on 4 cylinders". He just did a visual check, no
scans. He also said my problem with my car could be any "number of things", which bothers me to hear that. I don't mind spending the $140 they want to do an official diagnosis, but only if they can "pinpoint" the exact problem.
Also stopped by Auto Zone as one of you suggested, but they only have testers for 1996 and above??
Again, appreciate very much all of you who have tried to help. Wife's bugging me to get rid of the car, yet I love my Bimmer.
Any new thoughts regarding the car problems? And, oh yeah, still for the life of me can't find those codes.
Larry
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Larry,
I tried Jeff's method for reading the codes in my '91 318is and it worked fine. I think we have the same computer so it's hard to understand why yours won't give it up. When you cycle the gas pedal, you do have to cycle it full travel -- that is from fully released to fully floored and back again. $140 seems mighty high just to read the codes. My car sputtered a little this summer and I pulled into an independant BMW shop to have the code read and it was $30. Try looking around for a more reasonable shop.

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Your computer is actually a bit different, the codes come out the same way, but have different meanings.

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If it is only running on four, I'd say a faulty coil is the likely cause.
--
*All those who believe in psychokinesis, raise my hand *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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wrote:

Me too.
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Thanks Jack and Dave, You both are very helpful. I will keep trying to read my codes.
One thing I forgot to mention which "puzzled me" was that the BMW dealer said their "codes would read differently than the codes from an independent shop". Didn't pursue the comment, but does not make sense, does it?
Larry
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Think they probably meant that 'standardised' codes for emission related things weren't standardised at the time your car was made. And that code readers merely give the code, which might well be just a number. So you need to know what that number refers to.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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To the extent that the BMW place has different software in their reader than the independent has, then yes the codes can be different. But the stuff you are working on is pretty basic, and the codes should be good.
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This is true, they only have testers for OBD II, which hit the streets in '96.
Can't you get the Check light to flash if you turn the key On (but not Start), and fully depress and release the throttle in 5 seconds?
Look in your Yellow Pages for an independent BMW service center. They will have the diagnostic tool. My guy pulls codes for me in about 3 minutes, and two of them are walking out to the car. I have a buddy with the code reader you need, but it is having some sort of failure at the moment, it won't read my car or his, so we are pretty sure it's the machine not the cars.

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