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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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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  #1  
Old 05-30-2007, 07:50 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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1998 528i CDV removed!!!!

I know I know and I know that this CDV topic has been discussed a thousand times here.
Yet when looking for specific info (nut sizes etc.) it has been difficult to find.

Car: 1998 528i 5-speed with 95K miles
I am the 4th owner, very little records.
Clutch shifts nice and crisp when I bought it but from reading the posts on CDV I decided to remove it anyway (I was itchy with my hands today!). Only after I removed the CDV then I realized that the previous owner had replaced it with a drilled out unit!!!
However I ended with a nice write-up with details for those who have limited skills and want a detailed write-up


1. Car on wood ramps as show
- Put in 1st gear; hand brake on very tight, block wheels with bricks on both front and rear (safety first!!!).

2. Remove the Driver's side Air Filter Cabin Housing to expose the brake reservoir.
Loosen the cap a bit, make sure brake fluid is at Max level.

3. Now this step is critical. Yes it is a MUST! I learned it the hard way!!!
Get a C-clamp and clamp the hydraulic rubber hose so brake fluid will not drip down. Do this from engine compartment (easier this way than from below).

4. Now loosen the 11-mm hydraulic line nut completely but do NOT try to remove the line yet.
Next loosen CDV 14-mm nut, now remove the CDV.
Then I found out that the P.O. changed it to a drilled-out unit! So overall, no change in clutch response to me

5. Re-shape the hydraulic as in the picture.

6. No need for a modified unit, the 11-mm hydraulic line nut screws right into the slave cylinder. NOTE: wear rubber glove and tighten this by hand to PREVENT CROSS-THREADING!!! Then tighten the 11-mm nut, do NOT overtighten it as you can strip it.
What I do: after hand-tighten, I tighten about 30 degrees, let say from 1 o'clock to 2 o'clock position.

7. Remove the C-clamp then get a second person to help you bleed the hydraulic line.
Bleed until air comes out or fluid goes from Max to just above Min.

8. Top up the reservoir with brake fluid.

9. Put everything back, do NOT forget:
The rubber seal that goes around the air filter Housing (this rubber seal is removed when removing the air filter housing)

10. Remove wheel blocks and Go for a test drive…..then have a beer…..
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Last edited by cn90; 05-30-2007 at 07:52 PM.
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  #2  
Old 05-30-2007, 09:34 PM
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16valex 16valex is online now
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It is nice of you to do this for the forum
Cheers
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  #3  
Old 05-30-2007, 10:21 PM
applecran applecran is offline
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Thanks for this.

Question about your ramps, I was going to make my own with 3 levels of 2 by 10, is this necessary, or is the 2 levels you have good enough, just need it to get under there to do transmission fluid, brake fluid, rear sway for now, and generally need to get under there.

Thanks
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  #4  
Old 05-31-2007, 07:01 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Some ideas....

Quote:
Originally Posted by applecran View Post
Thanks for this.

Question about your ramps, I was going to make my own with 3 levels of 2 by 10, is this necessary, or is the 2 levels you have good enough, just need it to get under there to do transmission fluid, brake fluid, rear sway for now, and generally need to get under there.

Thanks
- Wood ramp: actually mine is 2.5 levels but 3 levels ( 3 x 1.5 " = 4.5 ") is nicer. You can even do 4 levels.
I made a mistake, I made it a bit too narrow (using 2 x 8 lumber) and too short (tire barely fits on it) but too lazy to make another set of ramps.....

But here is may advice, make it wide and longer.
So:
a. use 2 x 12: so width is 11.5" (12" rough lumber means 11.5 " in the real world) = 29 cm wider than most tires.
b. or 2 x 10: width is 24 cm, also OK.
c. pre-drill the holes and tie them together with wood screws.
d. make a total of 4 ramps (I only have 2).

Get the lumber from hardware stores or better yet from construction site dumpster, ask for permission use them, best is during rough framing stage when the carpenters build the floor joists.

*** Now my "modified" CDV is out of the car, the down stroke is softer, i.e., the fluid flows more freely, not restricted by the small orifice (even with a drilled out CDV).

So summary:
- down stroke softer
- up stroke (clutch engaging) is the same when compared with this modified CDV.

My recommendation is if you have a CDV or even a modified CDV, get rid of it.

Now my E39 clutch pedal feels the same as my E23 (1983 735i 5sp).


CNN-090
98 528i 5sp

Last edited by cn90; 05-31-2007 at 07:34 AM.
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  #5  
Old 05-31-2007, 10:30 AM
ctan ctan is offline
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Will any compatible brake fluid from autozone works for our car?
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  #6  
Old 05-31-2007, 11:41 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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I use Valvoline DOT4 synthetic brake fluid.
http://www.valvoline.com/pages/produ...asp?product=51

Last edited by cn90; 05-31-2007 at 01:25 PM.
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  #7  
Old 05-31-2007, 01:23 PM
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Use synthetic as much as you can, for the brake fluid, oils, etc.
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  #8  
Old 10-13-2007, 03:31 PM
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tomibriggs tomibriggs is offline
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Finally!

Finally deleted that sucker. The idea of putting a C-clamp on the hydraulic line is brilliant. I only saw maybe 2 drops of brake fluid drip at the most. Thanks cn90.

During the test drive, I saw the ASC icon light up briefly as I released the clutch hard into 2nd gear which to me means no more clutch delay.
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  #9  
Old 10-13-2007, 05:43 PM
n3rd n3rd is offline
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Nightkrawler suggested that you can totally remove the CDV and just readjust the line sans cdv... is that possible?
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  #10  
Old 10-13-2007, 06:12 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Quote:
=tomibriggs;2718123]Finally deleted that sucker. The idea of putting a C-clamp on the hydraulic line is brilliant. I only saw maybe 2 drops of brake fluid drip at the most. Thanks cn90.
Yeah,

I learned it the hard way! Was too lazy to put the C-clamp on, could not bend the metal line fast enough to re-insert. I quickly got out and clamped the rubber hose line. I was panicking finding the rubber hose line at the firewall while brake juice was dripping on the ground!!!!
Lost about half of the reservoir volume!!!!!
Well, life is a learning experience.
That is why I did the write-up so others do not fell into the same booby trap.
Glad it worked out for you.

Quote:
Nightkrawler suggested that you can totally remove the CDV and just readjust the line sans cdv... is that possible?
If you read my original post above, this is exactly what it is: removing the CDV, re-shape the line and done. NO Need for a modified CDV.

Last edited by cn90; 10-13-2007 at 06:15 PM.
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  #11  
Old 10-13-2007, 08:05 PM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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When deleting the CDV, just be careful to NOT cross-thread the line when securing it. It can be a little challenging to rebend the line slightly to make up for the ~2" length of the CDV and get the nut to thread nicely.
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  #12  
Old 10-14-2007, 08:06 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ågent99 View Post
When deleting the CDV, just be careful to NOT cross-thread the line when securing it. It can be a little challenging to rebend the line slightly to make up for the ~2" length of the CDV and get the nut to thread nicely.
1++++

This is why Line #6, I wrote:
6. No need for a modified unit, the 11-mm hydraulic line nut screws right into the slave cylinder. NOTE: wear rubber glove and tighten this by hand to PREVENT CROSS-THREADING!!! Then tighten the 11-mm nut, do NOT overtighten it as you can strip it.
What I do: after hand-tighten, I tighten about 30 degrees, let say from 1 o'clock to 2 o'clock position.


By wearing rubber glove, it gives you the NECESSARY grip to turn the nut BY HAND First so you do NOT cross-thread the nut.
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Old 10-14-2007, 12:30 PM
RacerX0911 RacerX0911 is offline
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i want to do this soo badly but i dont know how to bleed the clutch and that is holding me back all this time... can someone give me intructions as if your teaching a little kid on how to bleed the clutch?
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Old 10-14-2007, 03:07 PM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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I never bleed the clutch when I change CDVs. If you clamp the line as suggested by cn90, I don't think it is necessary to bleed it. In fact, even if you don't clamp the line, which I do not, I don't need to bleed the clutch.

When you are finished up with the job, simply pump the clutch a lot before, during, and after you start the car and go for a test drive. Just make sure you have the proper amount of brake/clutch fluid in the reservoir and you should be fine.

It is NOT as critical to bleed the clutch as it is the bleed the brakes.
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  #15  
Old 10-14-2007, 03:20 PM
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Ågent99 Ågent99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
1++++

This is why Line #6, I wrote:
6. No need for a modified unit, the 11-mm hydraulic line nut screws right into the slave cylinder. NOTE: wear rubber glove and tighten this by hand to PREVENT CROSS-THREADING!!! Then tighten the 11-mm nut, do NOT overtighten it as you can strip it.
What I do: after hand-tighten, I tighten about 30 degrees, let say from 1 o'clock to 2 o'clock position.

By wearing rubber glove, it gives you the NECESSARY grip to turn the nut BY HAND First so you do NOT cross-thread the nut.
With all due respect, cn, rubber gloves and grip isn't all that is needed to get the nut to thread correctly. One must also rebend the line slightly to get things to line up and that isn't always so easy.

I've done perhaps 40-50 CDVs on all kinds of BMWs and my personal opinion is that REPLACING the CDV is often easier than rebending the line. Realize that not everyone is as an experienced mechanic or handyman like yourself and your one experience (my guess) of deleting the CDV and rebending the line and easily rethreading isn't necessarily indicative of what most people might face.

I just feel it is necessary to state this to make sure folks have all the facts and I feel my experience should be heard here.
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Old 10-14-2007, 10:36 PM
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tomibriggs tomibriggs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RacerX0911 View Post
i want to do this soo badly but i dont know how to bleed the clutch and that is holding me back all this time... can someone give me intructions as if your teaching a little kid on how to bleed the clutch?
I had the same exact apprehension. I even taught my 5 year old son how to pump the clutch so he can help me with bleeding process. It turns out that putting a C-clamp on the rubber hose eliminates the need to bleed the line. As I have mentioned, you will only see a drop or 2 of fluid if you follow cn90 write-up properly.
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Old 10-15-2007, 09:14 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Picture #6 shows you exactly how to re-shape the line. Gently bend the line as shown.

Of course, if you don't want to re-shape the line, the alternatives are:
a- Get a drilled out unit from Zeckhausen:
http://www.zeckhausen.com/CDV.htm

b- Drill the CDV yourself. If you look carefully in the CDV's hole, you can move the round plate up and down (held by a spring). If you get the right drill bit size, you can drill the hole in the round plate to make it bigger; so less restriction of flow.

RE: Bleeding. I am from old school and I believe in bleeding.
Remember during bleeding you have no wheel lock from the manual transmission. So:

- hand brake on very tight.
- Chock the wheels with bricks etc. (safety first)
- Get your 8-10 year old son to press the clutch pedal.

Steps:
1- Yell to your son "press", then during this phase open the bleed screw. You will see fluid (and air bubbles) coming out.
2- When fluid stops flowing, slightly tighten the bleed screw.
3- Tell your son to "Release".
4- Wait 10 seconds for fluid to refill the master cylinder.

Repeat Steps 1 through 4 until all bubbles come out. Or better yet if you have never replace your clutch system hydraulic fluid, it is time to do that:
- Using a kitchen baster, remove as much brake fluid as possible (caution: brake fluid is very corrosive to paint, so keep it away from paint, wipe off any spill immediately)
- Fill the reservoir to "Max" with new brake fluid (I use Valvoline Synthetic DOT4)
- Bleed brake as above (steps 1-4) until level goes from Max to Min.
- Fill it again to Max.
- Test drive the car.

It is actually very easy.

HTH

Last edited by cn90; 10-15-2007 at 09:16 AM.
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  #18  
Old 10-15-2007, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
a- Get a drilled out unit from Zeckhausen:
http://www.zeckhausen.com/CDV.htm

b- Drill the CDV yourself. If you look carefully in the CDV's hole, you can move the round plate up and down (held by a spring). If you get the right drill bit size, you can drill the hole in the round plate to make it bigger; so less restriction of flow.
The CDVs Dave Z. and I provide are NOT drilled out. Using a vice and a small 1/8" punch, you literally tap out all the innards of the CDV. Drilling could cause damage to the seated taper and cause sealing problems. I do not recommend these parts be drilled out.
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  #19  
Old 10-15-2007, 01:46 PM
aise aise is offline
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drilling is a bad idea, i killed one brand new CDV
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Old 10-15-2007, 01:58 PM
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tomibriggs tomibriggs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
Steps:
1- Yell to your son "press", then during this phase open the bleed screw. You will see fluid (and air bubbles) coming out.
2- When fluid stops flowing, slightly tighten the bleed screw.
3- Tell your son to "Release".
4- Wait 10 seconds for fluid to refill the master cylinder.

Repeat Steps 1 through 4 until all bubbles come out. Or better yet if you have never replace your clutch system hydraulic fluid, it is time to do that:
- Using a kitchen baster, remove as much brake fluid as possible (caution: brake fluid is very corrosive to paint, so keep it away from paint, wipe off any spill immediately)
- Fill the reservoir to "Max" with new brake fluid (I use Valvoline Synthetic DOT4)
- Bleed brake as above (steps 1-4) until level goes from Max to Min.
- Fill it again to Max.
- Test drive the car.

It is actually very easy.

HTH
If this was on your original write-up, I wouldn't have waited this long. My 5 year son was more than willing to help with the process.
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  #21  
Old 05-01-2009, 10:57 AM
mesallem mesallem is offline
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is this the same for a 2001 525i? Like same size wrenches and everything?
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  #22  
Old 05-01-2009, 12:06 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Quote:
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is this the same for a 2001 525i? Like same size wrenches and everything?
Yes.
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  #23  
Old 04-24-2010, 06:46 AM
peter miller peter miller is offline
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no cluotch pressure

I changed the slave cylinder on my 2000 540i and i still have the original problem there is no pressure on my clutch pedal it just flips forward and backwards the slave cylinder that i replaced was clearly bad so i'm kind of stumped at what is wrong could you please help me figure this out.
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  #24  
Old 04-24-2010, 08:13 AM
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YOu want to reverse bleed in order to get rid of the air pocket at the slave. By reverse bleed, you're introducing fluid from the valve end of the slave cylinder and then you push the fluid all the way up to the clutch master and then to the reservoir.

If you've never done this before, what you need is a large syringe and a hose (or a mightyvac pump set to pump fluid vs. vacuum). You can get a large syringe at Tractor supply for about $3, and a 5/16" ID hose. Fill the syringe w/ Dot 4 fluid, then connect the hose to syringe and bleed screw of the clutch slave. Open the screw and inject fluid upstream. Don't forget to address the increased fluid volume coming into the reservoir.
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Last edited by DHoang; 04-24-2010 at 08:17 AM.
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  #25  
Old 04-24-2010, 09:15 AM
Mark@EAC Mark@EAC is offline
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I just completely remove them and carefully reshape the metal line to thread into the slave. If you are going to go to the trouble of tapping it out, etc why not just totally delete it? Last delete I did like that took all of 10 minutes on the hardware side and maybe another 5 to bleed it out.
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