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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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Old 09-30-2012, 02:17 AM
superwashcycle superwashcycle is offline
DIY lifestyle.
Location: Irvine
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 56
Mein Auto: 2003 530i Sport Premium
How do you identify failing valve cover gasket or CCV?

Hi guys,

Forgive me if this information is already available, but I have searched all over for a picture of what a leaking valve cover gasket looks like from the perspective of someone popping open the hood. Where does the oil tend to gather as a result of such a leak?

My car is a 2003 530i with 60k miles and I'm just about set on buying the OEM parts to do the fix but I just want it to be the right solution to this problem. Last week, I noticed a burning smell inside the car with the blower on but the AC off. I've read many posts about this symptom and have concluded that it's burning oil but am not sure if it's the VCG.

Currently, droplets of oil are gathering where the black plastic of the top engine cover ends on the passenger side. There is a metal ridge right below it and that's where I can see the oil stains. The car also makes a cricket-like noise when in drive or reverse, and from what I've read, this either a belt or the CCV.

I'd greatly appreciate any knowledge on this - if I'm going to DIY, I'd like to do it right.
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