One of the most common symptoms customers bring their European automobiles for is misfires. They can be particularly jarring to our customers as a misfire will throw the engine off balance and will cause the BMW to shake. Misfires will also cause a flashing service engine soon light. Usually the case for this issue can be spark plugs and wires, but there can be a series conditions that can cause this issue. When experiencing a flashing check engine light and you feel the car shaking it is important to bring your car to a trusted service center such as Bimmer Motors to repair the problem quickly as misfires can cause damage to the emissions system that will prevent your German Automobile from passing its yearly state inspection and at worse can cause engine damage if not addressed soon enough.
Combustion in each cylinder is a violent process that normally causes a lot of vibration that would be uncharacteristic of a European luxury vehicle. That is why engineers design their engines to have opposing cylinders being on opposite strokes to cancel out the vibrations of the cylinder going through the combustion cycle. Now if one cylinder isn’t getting proper air, fuel, or spark it will not go through combustion and throw the rest of the engine off balance. This is why you’ll experience shaking and reduced power in case of a misfire.
When people think of misfires the most common culprit tends to be spark plugs, ignition wires, and coils. Another common cause that most people don’t consider is vacuum leaks. They can cause misfires as excess air leaks into the engine and makes its way to the combustion chambers that the computers did not measure. As the air is un-metered it throws off the amount of fuel required for combustion, causing misfires. When testing shows that the ignition and fueling systems are in good shape then we at Bimmer Motors have to test for vacuum leaks. Searching for vacuum leaks is like looking for a needle in a hay stack. The modern way to detect vacuum leaks in an engine requires a machine to smoke the inside of the engine at low pressure. This method will show where the vacuum leak is as smoke will visibly pour out of the seal that failed in the engine.
When you feel excessive vibration from your German automobile or see a flashing check engine light on your dashboard, it is recommended to have the issue diagnosed and repaired as soon as possible. As letting your BMW run with a misfire can lead to major component damage and biggest repair cost the more you drive it in that condition. If that situation arises we at Bimmer Motors are here to help.