bwilson4web
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Bimmercode App experience?

Thu Aug 03, 2017 5:38 pm

Hi,

I picked up Bimmercode App (version 2.0.11), fully enabled $25, and an iCar OBD interface (SC03-Z, ICAR\WIFI). Once the car cools off, I plan to change the fuel level to the max, 2.4 gal. I'd read about it on the BMW i3 Facebook page but have not been able to find the instructions. Regardless, I figured to give it hack and was wondering if anyone has experience with using this app to increase the tank size?

Near as I can tell, there will be two mods:
  1. KOMBI_IO1_F56 -> Increase electronically limited fuel capacity
  2. KOMBI_IO1_F56 -> Fuel consumption gauge scale
Then there are some "Fuel range warning" which I don't quite understand:
  • KOMBI_I01_F56 -> Fuel range warning 1
  • KOMBI FPK_I12 -> Fuel range warning 1
  • KOMBI FPK_I12 -> Fuel range warning 2
Are these just 'nanny warnings' with no other effect?

Uncoded, BMW Connected shows 65 miles in the tank. I'll take another photo of the tank level before coding.

FYI, both KOMBI_I01_F56 and KOMBI FPK_I12 have "Range Extender activation battery level" but I'm using DVDInmotion for that function.

FOLLOW-UP
  • Power-on to PRO mode - works perfectly!
  • Set Time from GPS - not sure as I had just set the HH:MM when the car put in the mm/dd/yyyy
  • Show tire pressure and temperature - this worked perfectly!
  • Remove tank limit - set but not yet tested. I expected the indicated gas range to change but it still shows the original values. I've reported it to the developer. Tomorrow, I will do a range test and find out if it worked.
Nothing remarkable about the OBD interface and App operation. They simply work without complication. I didn't see the effects of the DVDInmotion settings, a puzzle but it continued to work without a problem. Eventually I'll back out the DVDInmotion and see if this package can handle everything.

My goal is the extra 0.4 gal of fuel in the tank so more experimentation is needed. My reading suggests the gas range requires another code value BUT I am more interested in having the gas than the indicated range. So far, no complaints beyond the indicated gas range.

Thanks,
Bob Wilson

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sat Aug 05, 2017 9:31 pm

The 2.4 gal code did not work. I ran the tank dry and could only pump 2.2 gallons. The trank level and remaining miles is not there, yet.

I've tried to contact the developer but not had any luck. I'll post an update after we get a chance to chat and figure out what is going on.

Not giving up,
Bob Wilson

alohart
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sun Aug 06, 2017 12:22 am

bwilson4web wrote:The 2.4 gal code did not work. I ran the tank dry and could only pump 2.2 gallons.

2017 i3 REx owners have reported that their fuel capacity parameter is set by the factory to a value that maps to 8.5 liters (2.25 gallons). So maybe that's the most possible.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:03 am

alohart wrote:
bwilson4web wrote:The 2.4 gal code did not work. I ran the tank dry and could only pump 2.2 gallons.

2017 i3 REx owners have reported that their fuel capacity parameter is set by the factory to a value that maps to 8.5 liters (2.25 gallons). So maybe that's the most possible.

Wow! That is a revelation.

I was going to revisit a gas station and try to put a bit more in on the hypothesis the any angle of pavement by the pump might have supported an 'air bubble' in the tank. Now I'm thinking about repeating the benchmark test and seeing if I get 2.2x gallons again from a station that I know has a flat parking spot by the pumps.

Could you point me to whoever reported the 2.25 gallons? I want to compare my software version to theirs.

Also, I may do an A-B-A test by reversing the code. If it reverts to 1.9 gallons and then back to 2.2x, it would be confirmed. Dang, I'd have to drive the BMW i3-REx a couple of hundred miles. <GRINS>

Thanks,
Bob Wilson

alohart
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Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:26 am

bwilson4web wrote:I was going to revisit a gas station and try to put a bit more in on the hypothesis the any angle of pavement by the pump might have supported an 'air bubble' in the tank. Now I'm thinking about repeating the benchmark test and seeing if I get 2.2x gallons again from a station that I know has a flat parking spot by the pumps.

In some cars, filling the tank until the fuel level is visible in the filler tube can cause fuel to flow into the charcoal vapor trap which would make it appear that the tank had a higher capacity than it actually does.

bwilson4web wrote:Could you point me to whoever reported the 2.25 gallons? I want to compare my software version to theirs.

I have had no success finding this reference. Ours is a BEV, so I have only passing interest in REx fuel tank capacities and did not pay as much attention as I might have had I owned a REx.

I believe that the TNK_VOLL_ANZEIGE values range up to 12 hexadecimal, or 18 decimal. These values are apparently multiples of 0.5 liters, so 12 hex would map to 18 * 0.5 = 9 liters (2.4 gallons). I believe someone asked why TNK_VOLL_ANZEIGE should not be set to 12 hex. A 2017 i3 REx owner replied the factory setting was 11 hex. Maybe BMW is being cautious by leaving another 0.5 liters in an "empty" tank so that the fuel pump would never pump air. Maybe a 2017 REx tank makes available only 8.5 liters (2.25 gallons) unless the driver overfills the tank.

Life is much simpler with a BEV :D
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sun Aug 06, 2017 10:09 am

Not to worry about over filling. I'm a 'two click' guy who does not pull the nozzle partially out to see gas. I fully appreciate the risk to carbon canister so the second click is enough.
alohart wrote:. . .
I believe that the TNK_VOLL_ANZEIGE values range up to 12 hexadecimal, or 18 decimal. These values are apparently multiples of 0.5 liters, so 12 hex would map to 18 * 0.5 = 9 liters (2.4 gallons). I believe someone asked why TNK_VOLL_ANZEIGE should not be set to 12 hex. A 2017 i3 REx owner replied the factory setting was 11 hex. Maybe BMW is being cautious by leaving another 0.5 liters in an "empty" tank so that the fuel pump would never pump air. Maybe a 2017 REx tank makes available only 8.5 liters (2.25 gallons) unless the driver overfills the tank.
. . .

Fortunately the software has an 'expert' mode, undocumented, I haven't entered yet. It may allow me to see and test the actual values. According to other coding reports, once changed the indicated gas range changes too. So without changing the amount of gas, I might be able to see the effect of different values on the indicated gas range.

Leaving an extra 1/2 liter in the tank also means not having to worry about 'priming' the fuel pump or bubbles of air/gas fumes in the line. A 'gas bubble' at the injectors might trigger a check engine light.

I wanted to share some of the photos taken during the test drive but it appears my iPhone 5s does not focus well in low light conditions. However, here is one clear photo taken when I could enable the REx:
Image
78 + 62 + 21 = 161 mi estimated total range (it took ~10 miles to reach the highway on ramp.)
temp mid-70s.

So when I arrived at the CCS charger, this is what I had:
Image
Image
114 + 20 + 37 = 171 mi estimated total range

Bob Wilson

EVBob
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Mon Aug 07, 2017 9:36 am

My personal best for a refueling is 2.34 gallons. This takes a bit of time and getting the right flow rate or pumping technique...

I coded our REx with the traditional odbii cable and software on the laptop setup.

There is supposedly still 1 liter in the tank even after coding and empting the tank to prolong the life of the pump. the actual limitation of 2.4 gallons is via the pump, not the sensor in the tank.

I have a feeling though that if I were to fill the tank regularly, and stop pumping after the first click - the next fill up would be 2.34 gallons at the first click on the pump...

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:25 am

I used the advanced option and it looks like the correct tank values were set. So it may be a question of refueling technique or just enjoy the extra capacity. This evening, the car indicated it had 170 mile range, combined gas and electric.

Bob Wilson

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Mon Aug 14, 2017 6:08 pm

A strange day, I planned to test the fuel capacity today with a 124 mile trip:
  • Huntsville to Fayetteville - pickup PowerBall tickets
  • Fayetteville to Jack Daniels distillery Lynchburg - take the tasting tour
  • Lynchburg to Winchester - scout some fishing camps and guides
  • Winchester to Huntsville - home again
Light sprinkle rain, the car indicated 183 mile range, no problem. At about 21 miles, the range extender came on and familiar drone was heard again. Then about 5 miles from Fayetteville, I had to stop short for traffic, the Rex stopped, and a drive train error came on. RATS!

I continued to Fayetteville to visit a familiar place and pickup the Lotto tickets hoping turning the car off might clear the code ... no luck. So I headed home and the 40kW CCS charger downtown.

With the car plugged in and starting at 43% SOC, I connected the WiFi OBD interface and cranked up BimmerCode. I could not find the setting that controls the 75%, REx enable option. More importantly, while the car was on charger, I didn't feel comfortable touching the controllers. But 30 minutes later, it was at 93.4% and I moved to another area to do some experiments.

The first thing was to back out the tank capacity increase which seemed to go OK. I had to use the "Backup" function as the "Active" check would not toggle. Then I used DVDInmotion to back out the 75% enable. I tried to use DashCmd that came with the WiFi OBD interface to read the error code, no luck. However, "CLEAR CODES" turned off the drivetrain error.

I found BimmerLink by the same author and something else called Coder who claim to report diagnostic codes and vehicle metrics. Unfortunately neither lists the BMW i3 or REx in their covered vehicles. Coder in particular is aimed at diesel owners. What I don't know is if this is a permanent fault or intermittent. For good measure, I checked the fuel tank cap and it seemed fine.

So what to do next:
  1. Find BimmerCode option (i.e., Headunit HU_NBT) to enable 75% REx so I can retire DVDInmotion. BimmerCode is much easier to use as you don't have to trick the car into reloading the software with the USB in the slot.
  2. Confirm the tank expansion is backed out using BimmerCode 'Expert' mode.
  3. Replicate the test to see if the drivetrain error comes back. Use BimmerLink to monitor some of the vehicle metrics.
Thoughts?

Bob Wilson

bwilson4web
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Re: Bimmercode App experience?

Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:22 am

Tonights testing was productive:
  • Was able to replicate the problem but I need to have the 75% range extender enable. Otherwise, at 6% SOC, there would not be enough to get back home (or the BMW Service Center.)
  • Was able to clear the error: (1) "CLEAR CODE", and (2) keep car off long enough to have controllers reset.
  • Set the code again and am testing if just car off, resetting the controller clears the indication.
  • BimmerLink appears to report some codes but everything is in German.
Well I've backed out the obvious coding, the tank size and can now flip between having the 75% menu option or not. After I reset the code and controllers to USA OEM values, I'll just 'happen' to be in the area when the SOC reaches 6% and pull into the BMW service center with the error.

When I set the error code this morning, I was at a slow speed descending a grade. There was a delay, ~10 seconds, before the car reported the drivetrain error. This suggests it is starting the REx is the problem ... probably a controller.

Now I know to expect the car to be out of service for a day or longer. Not a problem as my backup is a Prius Prime.

Bob Wilson

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