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Bmw fuel pump sealed in tank

Need help to by pass this system, German created, I wonder why, thinking of adding an external pump to see if it works. This is a 2004BMW325i M56 SULEV Engine? To replace new they’re asking for $7,000. Part only does not include labor.

For a fuel pump…that’s nuts!!!
Have you called around to independent shops.


Does this Beemer have direct injection? The pump is special and operating fuel pressure is above 300 psi.

Autozone shows a complete pump module for under 300 dollars.

I do not know if the fuel tank has to be dropped on this model but some Euro cars (SAAB for example) have a removeable panel to access the pump. Those are 10 minutes and done.

Pumps used to be located externally so yes a workaround could be done. The pump is in tank to help silence it s a bit.

This is what states. I would check the fuel pressure at the rail. There is a fuel pressure regulator that could be failing.


In the event of a fault in the fuel pump, the fuel tank must be replaced.

It is not possible to replace the fuel pump!

Thre are a few years of bmw that have a fuel system flaw that most of the fuel system gets replaced to fix. Its a know issue and it sounds like you have one of theese cars. I have info on it at home and will post it later.


you could probably get some hotshot mechanic to fix something special up for a lot less than 7k.
you get what you pay for tho. anybody good enough to trust with the job is gonna be expensive, a couple of grand, I d expect

It seems like the price is not so much related to the cost of parts but to what they think they can get out of you. It seems like labor should be a couple hours to drop the tank, drain it, install the new tank, and fill it.

This is a good question for a BMW forum, folks there will have the specifics of a work-around, if it exists.

I belief the fuel pump/tank are replaced as one on that year. I also heard the price is that high.

Do you live in California or somewhere the car has to be smogged? Sounds like a retrofit might be possible with the cheaper non California Emmisions parts.

From various sources on the internet

FWIW, the M56 was the CA ULEV version of the engine. Replacing the fuel tank is not inconsequential! If it turns out you have this, it might cheaper to retrofit the car with the M54 parts.
I think you have an M56 Sulev engine because of the model year. But forget about the type of engine. To be sure go straight to the tank and see for yourself how crazy BMW engineers can be. Lift off your rear seat, see if both left and right tanks have cable connectors. If yes then it is an M54 with replaceable pump and sensors at both left and right sides. If only the right (passenger side for a left hand drive vehicle) has a cable then it is M56 (a Sulev car) and you have to replace the whole tank just to replace the pump. In some models, replacement tanks have been upgraded and are now repairable.
99 percent its an m54. the m56 is only in sulev states like vermont and california with crazy emission laws. unfortunatley on the car itself there is no place to see. but the m56 fuel tank is made out of aluminum. might be able to look and see. ive never actually seen one.

OP specifically said he had the M56 SULEV

Why should we doubt him?

Many of the guys asking questions don’t know exactly know what engine model they have. This guy seems pretty sure of what he’s got

Even if the replacement tanks are repairable, it sure sounds like this guy still has the original sealed tank.

As far as retrofitting parts goes, it may be legal, depending on what state he lives in. But there is still the matter of the sealed tank. Once he replaces it with a newer tank with a serviceable pump, then the next time it fails, he can just replace the pump. But it sure sounds like he’s going to be spending a lot of money . . . at least this time

That’s my take on the matter

That was some interesting information, by the way

I wasn’t doubting the OP, I was just including the info from the responses I found elsewhere stating that some believe you can retrofit the M56 parts with M54 parts.

Sounds like a mess to me.

It certainly sounds like a bloody mess

I wonder if the specs for the M54 parts are close enough, so that you could use them without any fit or performance issues

I just checked it was the N54 systems that had a recall. BMW uses a direct inject system injection. Fuel pressures on systems can be 2000psi or more. If you work on the system yourself be very careful you don’t want to have an accident with fuel at that pressure. Look around for a independent BMW shop in your area that services the newer cars. This is not a system that you want to modify. As said before the BMW forums may be a help.


That’s what I was afraid of. I only heard about direct injection. I never worked on it, but it sounds dangerous.

Did a little more research on this issue, looks like BMW extended the warranty to 150,000 miles and 15 years for some cars in some states. See the blog It looks like it is a fight to get it covered but it can be done. Reading up on this system looks like the tank is all stainless steel.


According to alldata, the fuel pressure is 3.5 bar which equals 50 psi.

I may have been looking at the wrong spec, still sucks that you have to replace a entire fuel tank. Hopefully OP will be able to BMW to warranty the repair.

A clever mechanic should be able to devise a way to install a replacement pump inside the tank…Cut a port-hole, make a plate which contains a pump and install it in port-hole…This assumes it does not have direct injection…