Question : I
DRIVE a 1996 BMW 318i auto and the engine tends to die randomly
when the car is stationary.
The engine would judder and sputter.
Upon turning the ignition, the engine would then come alive
but only to die immediately again.
The problem started after I changed the car battery.
A day earlier, I changed a valve in the engine after hearing
a whistling noise ( like a kettle whistling ) when I drove the
The noise went away after the valve change.
The car also had an overheating problem after air bubbles
were trapped in the cooling system, which apparently caused the
radiator fan to stop operating.
This type of engine stalling condition is usually caused by
an air leak in the intake system and you will need to check all
the hoses from the air-mass sensor to the intake manifold
When there is an air leak, the air-fuel mixture gets too lean
and the EFI system cannot compensate sufficiently and therefore
the engine stalls.
The original problem may have been the PCV valve but I
suspect that in the process of replacing it, some other clamp or
hose got dislodged, causing an air leak.