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Old 12-06-2012, 02:45 PM
Nip Nip is offline
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Question Engine Vortex breather Failed?

Help! My car has smoked since I bought it in April ( 100k FSH) especially under hard acceleration (cloud of smoke filling the road, when I first bought it I removed the Swirl flaps, serviced it and changed the Loo roll engine breather filter to the Vortex type (I only put in the vortex not housing as well) and cleaned the EGV also. This made no difference to the clouds of smoke. The intake manifold was wet with oil and still is, so I decided it must be the Turbo leaking oil passed its seals into the inlet manifold and bought a reconditioned turbo. The Turbo arrived yesterday and I have spent this morning at a friends garage removing the old Turbo. When I removed the duct (Part No.13717790553) from the air filter to the turbo intake I found oil dribbling out of the small tube that brings engine air (via the Vortex unit) down to be recycled back in to the engine intake via the turbo. I has dawned on me that maybe the oil that I'm burning and causing the smoke is coming from the Vortex system not working and not leaking from the turbo seals after all. Has anyone had a vortex not work? I need to decide whether or not fit the new turbo or refit the old one and get a refund. Then investigate why the oil separator not working. Any thoughts .....

Last edited by Nip; 12-06-2012 at 03:44 PM. Reason: Fast Bobs comments
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Old 12-06-2012, 03:25 PM
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Fast Bob Fast Bob is offline
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You know....I normally have a pretty good command of the English language....and, while I *do* recognize (most of) these words individually, when I see them presented collectively in the form you have posted, I don`t have a flipping clue what you`re trying to say here....

Do you drink heavily before posting ?
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Old 12-07-2012, 04:59 AM
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Brucifer325 Brucifer325 is offline
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He thought he was posting on the Fanatics site.....
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Old 12-07-2012, 07:20 AM
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1972ford 1972ford is offline
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Seems like you have a lot of aftermarket parts in there and it's tough for us to help you with the limited info you gave...
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Old 12-07-2012, 09:07 AM
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ahull ahull is offline
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We'd love to help you out buddy, but we have no idea what you mean by "swirl flaps" and this "Vortex" item.

The only thing that starts to ring a bell for me is your crankcase vent valve CCV (oil separator, sometimes called engine breather). When that gets clogged it can put a lot of oil into your intake and will blow through into the exhaust and cause smoking like you describe. Common problem for moderate to high mileage e46. Solution is to replace CCV and related hoses. And have the dipstick tube cleaned out at the bottom where it dumps oil back to the pan. The valve cover gasket is usually compromised as well due to higher pressure from clogged CCV.

EDIT: I see now you have a 320d. Not many of those in the US. Most of our experience is on the petrol engines.

Last edited by ahull; 12-07-2012 at 09:10 AM.
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Old 12-07-2012, 01:41 PM
Nip Nip is offline
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Thanks, It was the oil separator causing the smoke. The housing has a valve in it which is supposed to close off the breather under acceleration, mine was stuck open so the turbo was sucking air/oil from the engine. All sorted now.

While you still have cheap petrol stick with it, rather than dirty diesel.

PS the "swirl flaps" are butterfly valves in the inlet manifold on the diesels which open at higher throttle openings, the only problem is they can snap off and trash the cylinder head/pistons, so people take them out and blank the holes as I have.

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Old 12-09-2012, 09:48 PM
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catso catso is offline
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On this side of the pond we are clueless about E46 diesels since we don't have any.
Don't be gormless; get some gorm!
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