Illustration for article titled One small step for DIY Man...

...one huge step for DIY Mankind!

That's right - that's an E46 2002 BMW 330ci - WITH NO CODES OR WARNINGS! Only took about 3 months to get here DIY by DIY and all Autozone or used parts. (Budget is tight) This is my daily driver, so gotta take care of her.

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Illustration for article titled One small step for DIY Man...

Its a proper Jalop Bimmer with Stick and original OEM Nav (that can play my tapes! Glad I kept the best 30 or so with me for a couple of decades)

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So, what did it took to get rid of all codes? They all happened one by one.

Problem: Oil pressure light would come up a few seconds after start, go away later.

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Solution: Oil sensor needs replacement, but its on the bottom of oil pan, has to be empty to do the switch, so I waited until car was due for an oil change (1 month) and got the part at Autozone.

Problem: 'Brake' light (not brake pad light) would come up, car starts to ride weird

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Solution: One tire had a very uneven spot of wear, seems like a tire-blister popped up, than then wore down, so I replaced tire with used but newish tire (tough budget) - 1 week to detect, 1 day to fix.

Problem: Brake pad light came up. (Right after the new tire)

Solution: New front brake pads and rotors. Got the parts at Autozone and did it with a buddy in an afternoon. (2 weeks)

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Problem: 'Check Engine Soon' light came up, it used to get them occasionally and would go away for weeks, but now it didn't. It stayed around like a deadbeat brother in the holidays.

Solution: The usual 'Running too lean' codes -, Tried detecting for leaks (none) then I used up all gas in tank, used a couple of cleaner agents, good gas tank full. Reset the lights with ODB cable, light hasn't come back.

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About $400 in a year of operations, so not bad at all. The 330 engine is flat out the most reliable of the 3-series. Coolant system is the weak spot of E46s, but it has behaved well so far.

Let's see how long we can stay clear.

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