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Thread: E46 330D Smoke Issue - Any Experts Here?

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    Default E46 330D Smoke Issue - Any Experts Here?

    Had a relative pop over today in his 2003 330D saloon, and in conversation I asked how it was running. He explained that he's got an issue where there's a severe lack of power under 2000 RPM, and quite a lot of smoke comes out of the exhaust at the same time. Once above 2k RPM everything is fine.

    To my untrained ear (only having ever owned petrol powered cars) it sounds like a coked EGR valve. Any thoughts on this?

    Unfortunately, it turns that out said relative is very green on car mechanicals, and getting meaningful info from him was hard going. When asked if it's single or twin turboed he reckoned it's the twin, but I'm sure it's not, and when I asked what the rated BHP is, as that'll give a clue as to the exact model, he reckoned it was 300 something (yea, ok). He went on to explain that he gave the car to BMW to diagnose the fault, they couldn't find any fault codes so they started guessing as to the cause and replaced what he called the mass air sensor (MAF I presume he means), but that made no difference, so BMW put the old one back on and didn't charge him for the work. They then reckoned it could be "something that costs £2000 to replace" (my relative's words), which I'm guessing could be the swirl valves...? BMW also reckoned the engine is quite coked up (having done 84k miles), but my relative thinks they're lying because "engines only coke up at 200k" (yea, ok).

    So, any ideas, despite the lack of firm info? Do these engines have EGR valves and do they cause lack of power and heavy smoking below 2k RPM? Thanks.

  2. #2
    Regular Member Dan_BlackSRi's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Vectra SRi

    Trim : XP NAV

    Engine : 1.9 CDTi 150

    Year : 2007

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    A 2003 330d is likely to be the 184bhp version (rather than the later 204bhp one - they are single turbo too), is it manual or auto, this would answer if it has swirls or not.

    The usual culprit for these engines (for lack of low down power) is MAF related, unplug it and see how it drives (it causes no issues driving with it unplugged).

    They do have EGR valves, they do coke up just like any other, but these can be bypassed easily, they are vacuum operated and just crimping up the pipe on the EGR itself (then refitting the vacuum hose) blanks these - on a 2003 should bring up no errors either

    Also, make sure he gets his crank case breather replaced asap (if not already), these blocking are the main cause of turbo failures in these engines - they are quite easy to replace and are only about £15 for a replacement filter, or £35 for an updated one. Ones from a MG ZT, Freelander etc will fit - the freelander parts are usually cheaper.

    Hope this helps.

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    Thanks for the info.

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