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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 01-13-2013, 07:32 AM
dmalen dmalen is offline
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2000 323i Oil leak

Hi everyone I have a 2000 323i. It has a small oil leak on the front right side of the engine. I have replaced the valve cover gasket and it still has leak. I double/triple checked to make sure I didn't screw something up when replacing gasket but it looks fine. I also replaced the crankcase ventilation hoses and separator because it was all dried out and causing rough idle and engine codes. It doesn't seem to be leaking from any of the hoses either. Any ideas what else is there that might be causing the leak?
Thanks
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  #2  
Old 01-13-2013, 08:14 AM
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halltristan halltristan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmalen View Post
Hi everyone I have a 2000 323i. It has a small oil leak on the front right side of the engine. I have replaced the valve cover gasket and it still has leak. I double/triple checked to make sure I didn't screw something up when replacing gasket but it looks fine. I also replaced the crankcase ventilation hoses and separator because it was all dried out and causing rough idle and engine codes. It doesn't seem to be leaking from any of the hoses either. Any ideas what else is there that might be causing the leak?
Thanks
Oil Filter Housing Gasket.

No need to wonder anymore. That's your problem. $5 fix if you do it yourself.
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  #3  
Old 01-13-2013, 06:03 PM
Y2K_Bimmer Y2K_Bimmer is offline
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Been there. +1 on OFHG. $6 and a couple hours.
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  #4  
Old 01-13-2013, 06:15 PM
barneyhyphen barneyhyphen is offline
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He said front RIGHT side. the oil filter housing is on the left.

My suggestion would be the lack of a dab of gasket sealant at the two joints formed between the timing chain cover and the front of the head, immediately under the VCG.

BH

Last edited by barneyhyphen; 01-13-2013 at 06:16 PM.
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  #5  
Old 01-13-2013, 08:45 PM
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halltristan halltristan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barneyhyphen View Post
He said front RIGHT side. the oil filter housing is on the left.

My suggestion would be the lack of a dab of gasket sealant at the two joints formed between the timing chain cover and the front of the head, immediately under the VCG.

BH
If you're looking at the car with it in front of you, the oil filter housing gasket would be on the right. If he meant the left side, I just assume he would have said the "passenger side".
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  #6  
Old 01-13-2013, 11:37 PM
GoForthFast GoForthFast is online now
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There's only one convention for this so we all know what each other is referring to.
The right side is the passenger side and the left side is the driver's side.
Call is something different and you're wrong.
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  #7  
Old 01-13-2013, 11:44 PM
lgr122 lgr122 is offline
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Originally Posted by GoForthFast View Post
There's only one convention for this so we all know what each other is referring to.
The right side is the passenger side and the left side is the driver's side.
Call is something different and you're wrong.
+1

It simplify when you talk about car's left side and right side. That way left side is always same side no matter how you look at it.
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  #8  
Old 01-14-2013, 04:11 AM
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halltristan halltristan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoForthFast View Post
There's only one convention for this so we all know what each other is referring to.
The right side is the passenger side and the left side is the driver's side.
Call is something different and you're wrong.
No, you didn't read the original post apparently. He stated that he replaced the vcg and that the leak is coming from the front right. only the vcg would leak on the front of the passenger side and since it's brand new and he mentions a leak that is otherwise perfect location of the ofhg, I am correct in assuming that is the side he is talking about driver side. Without clarification from the original poster my logic is correct.
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  #9  
Old 01-14-2013, 09:08 PM
Y2K_Bimmer Y2K_Bimmer is offline
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that's how i read it. On my bike it would be the left...
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  #10  
Old 01-15-2013, 12:40 PM
barneyhyphen barneyhyphen is offline
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Original post was read in full, I believe.

If the leak is on the LEFT, when sitting in the car, looking forward, it's most likely the oil filter housing gasket. COULD also be opposite, corresponding joint between head and timing chain cover, on the oil filter housing side.

If then leak is on the RIGHT, when sitting in the car, looking forward, it's most likely the joint mentioned in my earlier post.

Good luck.

BH
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  #11  
Old 01-15-2013, 06:37 PM
dmalen dmalen is offline
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Sorry guys for not getting back and replying but I came down with the flu and have been out of it. So here is how I was always taught. You tell what side of the car it is when you are sitting in the driver seat, therefore the leak is on the right side of the engine which is the passenger side. Sorry for the confusion.
Barneyhypen how much of a job is it to fix the joint you are talking about?
Thanks
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  #12  
Old 01-16-2013, 10:58 AM
barneyhyphen barneyhyphen is offline
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Pretty easy BUT, you'll need to take the VCG back off!

Clean everything thoroughly, surfaces AND boths sides of the gasket. If there's any sealant on the gasket left from when you did the job first time, pick it off.

Now, before you re-fit, put a "dab" of your chosen RTV type sealant (I happen to use the red stuff) in the four inside corners of the VCG moonshaped areas at the rear part of the VCG AND also a small 1/2" bead across each of the two head/timing chain cover "joints" (put that directly on the metal surface, rather than on the VCG.

Then button it all up. Job Done. Hope this helps cure the problem.

BH
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