Loss acceleration

Asked by Nov 08, 2016 at 09:31 PM about the 1992 BMW 3 Series 325i

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I drive a 1992 BMW. Yes this car is 24 years old,
but it seemed like it had a strong engine and a
good tranny. I have updated all of the regular
maintenance like tires, spark plugs shocks struts
Wheels and fixed issues like power steering. It
seemed to have a gas leak at the very top of the
engine, only leaking when I filled it and topped off
but stopping the leak after about 6 ounces of gas
leak. So this led me to only filling the engine three
quarters to avoid having to repair the leak right
now. I let the gas get down to 30 miles left
according to electronic function on the car. I was
in stop-and-go traffic and then the check engine
light came on. Immediately the car lost
acceleration but started softly bucking forward. I
was flooring it but could not hear or feel any
acceleration, it still would move very slowly, less
than 5 miles per hour, bucking the entire time.
Since this occurrence, i have kept the tank as full
as possible but the same thing has happened
about 3 more times. It is rather unpredictable, and
although i cannot hear or feel any acceleration- it
smells like burning rubber/something when i floor
the pedal. Mechanics have told me that they can
only help me at the moment the problem is
happening and while the check engine light is on,
so I am frustrated and scared to be out on the road
but do not have a means of buying a new car.

Other possible related information:

1: The check engine light and the occurrence is
directly related. The problem only happens the
moment the check engine light comes on and as
soon as the check engine light goes off the
problem stops.

2. The engine sometimes while in park revs up to
1000 rpms. But in a rhythmic bouncing.

3. This problem never occured until that first time i
got too low on gas.

4. If i ever get it going, possibly from a downhill
start, acceleration starts working.

My possible hypotheses (based completely on
google education):

1. Super clogged fuel injectors in this old ass car
2. Fuel pump issues, possible cause of the leak too
3. Tranny problem in 1st?

Please give your opinion on what the problem
would be, and what i can do to patch up the issue
and confidently get to and from work daily.

2 Answers

34,245

Have the engine codes read to know what the problem is.

The problem is transient and whenever i can get to a mechanic, i am told that they can only assess the problem while the light is on. Therefore, my question is: based on the symptoms i describe in the original post, is there and problem that a guru would diagnose my car with.

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