Engine Rebuild/New Engine - BMW M140i - Essex

Engine Rebuild/New Engine - BMW M140i - Essex

Author
Discussion

Omobono

Original Poster:

26 posts

38 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
Where are things now ? Does the vehicle start ? run ? fly ? nothing ? Is it in one piece ?

And signs of water/rust in the "headcam" ??? You have not mentioned the engine using any water or overheating ? ( and I'll accept "headcam" as a misunderstanding somewhere )

Thanks, here is in detail:

1) One fine morning engine starts to work irregularly, vibrations on gear stick. Engine runs otherwise well. Light goes up in the cickpit, "you can keep driving, drivetrain issue, have car seen".
2) issue disappears in the following days, gradually, until no light and no vibrations anymore.
3) Issue reappears and it is worse.
4) I go to BMW. BMW says what is not (timing, say), and wants to charge me £1200 for a new cat, just in case cat is clogged. Then they would go on following their "procedure", until they find what is wrong, and changing everything with new parts in the process, at £186 pound an hour. Insane.
5) I drive home with the car. I rev the engine as at this point I think that the cat is clogged, which BMW had given as the probable cause (sulphur smell). The engine is oveheated when I am home, but this is not surprising as I had revved the engine (not like a madman, but more than the usual). It's also not really bad, it was only 14 miles from the BMW workshop to home.
6) I drive to the station for work the following morning, everything appears fine. No or very little vibrations, engine good. Light does not show. I think the cat is declogging. I had ordered a cat declogging product and decided I would wait for that to work his magic before deciding what steps are necessary (perhaps a new cat, but not from BMW).
7) On the afternoon, engine stutters massively and then stops and refuses to start again, one mile from home. Engine tries to start but does not manage to do it, it's as if only 3 cylinders would try and the others wouldn't collaborate.
8) Car is towed home and a mobile mechanic called. The mechanic disconnects the cat from the engine, reasoning that if the issue is the clogged cat the engine will run smoothly and we will then care for a new cat. Alas, it does not happen. Even with cat disconnected, it's the same story. Engine tries to start, but it's stuck.
9) Mobile mechanic removes the plastic cover of the engine and looks inside from the oil lid. What he finds (and shows me) is a sort of "oil cream" which, we think, is due to emulsion of water and oil. Also, traces of rust on what, in Italy, we call "albero a camme" (I think it's camshaft, I have looked now...). So what he says is: this is not the cat, this is water in the engine, possibly from the head gasket, which made it more and more difficult for the engine to run due to the emulsified oil.

I think the diagnose is quite correct. I think the cylinder tried to work in increasingly more difficult conditions (possibly sometime better, sometime worse due to engine and outer temperature) until it did not go anymore. As to the damage, I reflect that I revved the engine to the point of getting some heating (not too much), but certainly it did not do the engine any favours. I have no idea if the "testata" (cylinder head"?) is compromised, I'd say likely not, but I think the cylinders will have to be redone (we call it "rettifica") and the head likely too.

At this point, fearing a huge bill anyway, I started toying with the idea of getting a reconditioned engine and be done with it, then I want to keep this car for a long time. Hence, the calls and options that I described in my original post.

So at the moment the issues I have are:

1) how likely it is that the damage done is such that the engine has to, more or less, be thrown away? If this is the case, I think the new engine may make sense. If this is unlikely to be the case, I'd go for a rebuild at the reputable shop in Dartford.

2) How likely is it that I go for a rebuild and the reputable shop tells me "sorry pal, you drove with emulsified oil in the engine, now it's all screwed and we need a new one". At that point, I would likely have been better off with the reconditioned engine from scratch.








Edited by Omobono on Friday 11th June 10:17

HustleRussell

20,083 posts

129 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
HustleRussell said:
Did the engine overheat?
Omobono said:
No overheating.
Omobono said:
The engine is oveheated when I am home, but this is not surprising as I had revved the engine (not like a madman, but more than the usual). It's also not really bad, it was only 14 miles from the BMW workshop to home.
?

It seems like you had a leak in the head gasket or head which was incorrectly diagnosed as something else by the BMW garage, then you continued to use the car until it would not restart.

Because of the bad diagnosis and continued use of the car, it does seem likely that a full engine replacement may be the right move.

Have you been adding coolant?

I presume the car is not under any kind of warranty?

Edited by HustleRussell on Friday 11th June 14:02

stevieturbo

15,628 posts

216 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
Omobono said:
Where are things now ? Does the vehicle start ? run ? fly ? nothing ? Is it in one piece ?

And signs of water/rust in the "headcam" ??? You have not mentioned the engine using any water or overheating ? ( and I'll accept "headcam" as a misunderstanding somewhere )

Thanks, here is in detail:

1) One fine morning engine starts to work irregularly, vibrations on gear stick. Engine runs otherwise well. Light goes up in the cickpit, "you can keep driving, drivetrain issue, have car seen".
2) issue disappears in the following days, gradually, until no light and no vibrations anymore.
3) Issue reappears and it is worse.
4) I go to BMW. BMW says what is not (timing, say), and wants to charge me £1200 for a new cat, just in case cat is clogged. Then they would go on following their "procedure", until they find what is wrong, and changing everything with new parts in the process, at £186 pound an hour. Insane.
5) I drive home with the car. I rev the engine as at this point I think that the cat is clogged, which BMW had given as the probable cause (sulphur smell). The engine is oveheated when I am home, but this is not surprising as I had revved the engine (not like a madman, but more than the usual). It's also not really bad, it was only 14 miles from the BMW workshop to home.
6) I drive to the station for work the following morning, everything appears fine. No or very little vibrations, engine good. Light does not show. I think the cat is declogging. I had ordered a cat declogging product and decided I would wait for that to work his magic before deciding what steps are necessary (perhaps a new cat, but not from BMW).
7) On the afternoon, engine stutters massively and then stops and refuses to start again, one mile from home. Engine tries to start but does not manage to do it, it's as if only 3 cylinders would try and the others wouldn't collaborate.
8) Car is towed home and a mobile mechanic called. The mechanic disconnects the cat from the engine, reasoning that if the issue is the clogged cat the engine will run smoothly and we will then care for a new cat. Alas, it does not happen. Even with cat disconnected, it's the same story. Engine tries to start, but it's stuck.
9) Mobile mechanic removes the plastic cover of the engine and looks inside from the oil lid. What he finds (and shows me) is a sort of "oil cream" which, we think, is due to emulsion of water and oil. Also, traces of rust on what, in Italy, we call "albero a camme" (I think it's camshaft, I have looked now...). So what he says is: this is not the cat, this is water in the engine, possibly from the head gasket, which made it more and more difficult for the engine to run due to the emulsified oil.

I think the diagnose is quite correct. I think the cylinder tried to work in increasingly more difficult conditions (possibly sometime better, sometime worse due to engine and outer temperature) until it did not go anymore. As to the damage, I reflect that I revved the engine to the point of getting some heating (not too much), but certainly it did not do the engine any favours. I have no idea if the "testata" (cylinder head"?) is compromised, I'd say likely not, but I think the cylinders will have to be redone (we call it "rettifica") and the head likely too.

At this point, fearing a huge bill anyway, I started toying with the idea of getting a reconditioned engine and be done with it, then I want to keep this car for a long time. Hence, the calls and options that I described in my original post.

So at the moment the issues I have are:

1) how likely it is that the damage done is such that the engine has to, more or less, be thrown away? If this is the case, I think the new engine may make sense. If this is unlikely to be the case, I'd go for a rebuild at the reputable shop in Dartford.

2) How likely is it that I go for a rebuild and the reputable shop tells me "sorry pal, you drove with emulsified oil in the engine, now it's all screwed and we need a new one". At that point, I would likely have been better off with the reconditioned engine from scratch.


Edited by Omobono on Friday 11th June 10:17
I think both diagnosis borderline on insanity, and either can be checked relatively easy for any competent technician.

Find a competent workshop to diagnose the problem before wasting money talking about changing engines.

And nothing from any of the places so far sound in any way competent.

Omobono

Original Poster:

26 posts

38 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
Thanks to all again.

Spoke to Crago's again this afternoon. They said the "creamy" quality of the oil could be due to the (pandemic-related) extremely low use of the car in the last year (incidentally, same was given as the cause for the clogging of the cat, if the cat had been really clogged). If I am very lucky (I might not be) it could be some sensor or other, which could also explain why the car had vibrations, then it hadn't, then it had again.

After a mature reflection, and considering that I think I can trust Crago's, I have decided that I will not go for the radical solution before positively knowing that something really bad is going on. If something really bad is going on, I hope that Crago's will be able to find a solution that does not cost more than the alternative of going for a reconditioned engine straight away.

In the end, I am not an expert but it seems difficult to me to think that I have cracked the head and if yes, I seem to understand (nobody has confirmed or denied here) that this does not mean that the entire engine must go down the drain. If the head is not cracked, I am confident letting Crago's repair whatever has to be repaired will be better for my wallet than a o miles reconditioned engine, my engine has less than 40,000 miles and I actually hopes it gives me many more.
.
So it's going to be Crago's and fingers crossed, big time.

Omobono

Original Poster:

26 posts

38 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
Forgot to add: at all times, the warning (when it appeared) said "you can keep driving". I think it means that the internal diagnostic never detected a catastrophic event.

stevieturbo

15,628 posts

216 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
Omobono said:
Thanks to all again.

Spoke to Crago's again this afternoon. They said the "creamy" quality of the oil could be due to the (pandemic-related) extremely low use of the car in the last year (incidentally, same was given as the cause for the clogging of the cat, if the cat had been really clogged). If I am very lucky (I might not be) it could be some sensor or other, which could also explain why the car had vibrations, then it hadn't, then it had again.

After a mature reflection, and considering that I think I can trust Crago's, I have decided that I will not go for the radical solution before positively knowing that something really bad is going on. If something really bad is going on, I hope that Crago's will be able to find a solution that does not cost more than the alternative of going for a reconditioned engine straight away.

In the end, I am not an expert but it seems difficult to me to think that I have cracked the head and if yes, I seem to understand (nobody has confirmed or denied here) that this does not mean that the entire engine must go down the drain. If the head is not cracked, I am confident letting Crago's repair whatever has to be repaired will be better for my wallet than a o miles reconditioned engine, my engine has less than 40,000 miles and I actually hopes it gives me many more.
.
So it's going to be Crago's and fingers crossed, big time.
It is starting to sound a little more sensible now.

And it isn't as simple as an ecu detecting a catastrophic event....it doesn't work like that. The ecu could explode...and it will not report that it has exploded....because it does not know lol it is not looking for that sort of thing.

The "shaking/vibrating", could be as simple as a coil failing and the engine off a cylinder.

Blocked cat whilst possible, is a doddle to actually test for any competent tech.

Mayo of some sort in the oil cap etc....usually meaningless unless it is huge amounts, and either way would not stop it from running without some other huge symptoms elsewhere ( and you have not reported coolant loss, nor said the ecu has reported the same which it most likely would be capable of )

ssray

804 posts

194 months

Friday 11th June
quotequote all
The mayo in the cap could just be the engine not getting hot enough, still having condensation that has not boiled off
I think you are better with the company that wants to find a problem and fix it, not potentially give you more problems
When its fixed you need to do a longer journey weekly

Krikkit

22,158 posts

150 months

Saturday 12th June
quotequote all
Fix the engine you have, don't screw yourself over by taking on an engine that ended up being a refurb in the first place.

Sounds to me like it needs a proper diagnosis not just guesswork. Get it recovered to a specialist and let them really get at it. Could be a cracked head or head gasket, or something comparatively simple.

scott10005

77 posts

163 months

Sunday 13th June
quotequote all
These engines can also suffer from the valvetronic motor failing and then the valvetronic shaft can corrode and become pitted due to the condensation from short journeys and not being able to move.

Has anyone done a diagnostic check?

kiethton

12,596 posts

149 months

Monday 14th June
quotequote all
This isn't yours is it? Doesn't look too clever if so...