Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-08-2010, 10:04 PM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
What are our options if our BMW E39 VANOS seals have started to deteriorate

GOAL: List all viable options to repair the classic E39 VANOS variable valve timing system o-ring deterioration.

In keeping with the useful "what are our options" threads ... I'd like to ask what our sum total of options are if we happen to have deteriorated VANOS seals (see a description of the problem here) on our beloved E39s.

As usual, I'll take a rough stab at the options, sorted by cost, high to low, and let others correct my assumptions ... so that - in the end - we'll have a decent list of the options to consider when our VANOS starts to fail.

What are our options if our VANOS seals have started to deteriorate:
  1. Replace with a new OEM VANOS unit containing OEM Teflon seals & OEM Buna-N (aka Nitrile, NBR) o-rings
  2. Replace with a rebuilt VANOS unit containing OEM Teflon seals & OEM Buna-N (aka Nitrile, NBR) o-rings
  3. Replace with a rebuilt VANOS unit containing custom Teflon seals & Viton (aka FKM, Fluorocarbon) o-rings
  4. Rebuild using a DIY kit using custom Teflon seals & Viton o-rings
  5. ? any other options ?
The prices for these options appear to be roughly as follows:
  1. New VANOS unit, BMW P/N 11-36-1-440-142 (Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings) =~ $560 to $700
  2. Rebuilt VANOS unit (Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings) =~$ ? does this option even exist ?
  3. Rebuilt VANOS unit (Teflon seals & Viton o-rings) =~ net $250 (for dual Vanos = $400 - $150 refundable core)
  4. DIY repair kit (custom Teflon seals & Viton o-rings) =~ $75
  5. ? any other options ?
The known suppliers for these options appear to be as follows:
  1. New VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings (BMW Dealership, ? who else supplies new OEM units ?)
  2. Rebuilt VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings (? does this option even exist ?) <== apparently not because nobody would want it
  3. Rebuilt VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Viton o-rings (Dr. Vanos, VAC, ? who else supplies rebuilt VANOS units ?)
  4. DIY repair kit with Teflon seals & Viton o-rings (Beisan, Mr. Vanos/Iridium, ? who else supplies a DIY repair kit ?)
  5. ? any other options ?
Please update this list if I missed an option; and please update the costs involved, and which suppliers, especially sponsors, to consider.




Note these VANOS DIYs:
- Beisan
- Trampdrift

Problem (from this link)
"Vanos" is BMW's name for its variable valve timing units. Vanos units take on various shapes and design according to car year and model (engine model). The vanos discussed here is BMW part # 11-36-1-748-036 (M50TU, US S50) and 11-36-1-748-819 (M52, S52). It's a single vanos, meaning only the intake valve timing is varied. This vanos unit is part of BMW 6-cylinder engines M50TU, M52, US S50, S52. These engines were incorporated into a wide range of car models during years 1993-1999. They are found in the 3-series E36 93-97, 5-series E34 93-95 / E39 96-98, 7-series E38 95-98, Z3 Roadster 2.8 E36 96-98, EU Z3 Coupe 2.8 E36 96-98, US M3 E36 94-99, US Z3 M E36 98-99.


This vanos has been experiencing a failure. It has been diagnosed that the failure is due to deterioration of the vanos piston seal O-ring. It has been determined that the O-ring is made from Buna (Buna-N, NBR, Nitrile). Buna is a very common O-ring material, but is limited in its temperature and chemical resistance characteristics. Unfortunately it is fairing quite badly in the vanos/engine environment. The O-ring has been found to harden, shrink, and have flat surfaces. This deterioration is causing the O-ring to lose its functional characteristics and thus cause the vanos to fail. BMW has been engaged regarding this matter, but has elected to not address the issue, "No further development will be done". New (rebuilt) vanos units are being sold with the same Buna O-ring. BMW does not provide the vanos piston seal/O-ring as a separate part.

Here is a link to the Roadfly BMW E39 forum where much of this information was first made public regarding the double vanos: http://bimmer.roadfly.com/bmw/forums/e39/7494631-2.html.
The double vanos shares the same seals design and O-ring failure as the single vanos.


The piston O-ring lies under and provides support to a piston Teflon seal ring. Replacing the O-ring requires removing the Teflon seal to access the O-ring. The Teflon seal can not be practically removed from the piston seal groove without damaging it. Thus replacing the O-ring necessarily requires replacing the Teflon seal.


The Buna O-ring can be replaced with an O-ring made from Viton. Viton (FKM, Fluorocarbon) has similar functional characteristics to Buna, but has much higher temperature and chemical resistance characteristics. It's also recommended for the automobile engine environment. The vanos Teflon (PTFE filled) seal is not a standard part and needs to be semi-custom manufactured.


The single vanos has one piston with one seal/O-ring.

Symptoms (from this link)

Cars experience:
Overall loss of torque and power, particularly in the lower RPM range, < 3k. Bogging then surging at 3k RPM. Uneven power distribution and RPM transition. Engine hesitations in the lower RPM range, < 3k. Louder idle and intermittent idle RPM hiccups. Difficult takeoffs. Loss of power and bogging when AC on. Increased fuel consumption.
Repairing the vanos seals provides:
Overall increase in torque and power, particularly in the lower RPM range, < 3k. Resolution of bogging then surging at 3k RPM. Smooth even distribution of power and RPM transition. Resolution of engine hesitations in the lower RPM range, < 3k. Quiet stable idle. Smooth easy takeoffs. Improved performance when AC on. Reduced fuel consumption, by ~10%.


In some cases the engine computer will generate the following fault code:
P1519 (BMW 212, 0xD4): Vanos mechanically stuck (jamming).


Diagnosis (from this link)

A vanos fault code, as described above, without previous tampering with the engine timing, is most likely a vanos seals failure indication.


Otherwise the vanos needs to be removed from the engine for inspection. Once the vanos cylinder cover is removed, an inspection of the piston seals fit in the cylinders will show a loose fit and thus a seals failure. Removal of the seals from the piston will show the inner O-ring has flat spots and a loss of elasticity.


In general, a diagnosis is not necessary. The vanos Buna O-ring is deteriorating in 20k miles (32k kilometers). Thus essentially all the cars with this vanos have a deteriorated seal O-ring and a failing vanos.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	2002_525i_VANOS.jpg
Views:	12895
Size:	108.3 KB
ID:	257659  

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 11:17 AM.
Reply With Quote
Ads by Google
  #2  
Old 12-08-2010, 10:46 PM
Vin M's Avatar
Vin M Vin M is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: NY
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 198
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW Dinan 530i/5
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
2. ~$250, Buy a rebuilt VANOS unit with new-style seals (who sells these & at what actual price?)
Someone told me about a company called Dr. Vanos that sells rebuilt VANOS units with new-style seals and internal bearings...single VANOS units start @ $350. and dual VANOS units are $400. including core charge.

Link: http://www.drvanos.com/

I have no personal experience with their product, so I can't vouch for their quality...if anyone has dealt with them, please weigh in with some feedback.
__________________
2003 530i (Sport Package) Build Date: 02/03
Titanium Gray over Black
Shadowline Trim
5-Speed Manual Transmission
Zeckhausen Modified CDV
Dinan Upgrades: High Flow Throttle Body, CAI, Stage 3 Software, and Free Flow Exhaust.

Horsepower: some is good, more is better, TOO MUCH is just right!
"If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough." ~ Mario Andretti
"What’s behind you doesn’t matter." ~ Enzo Ferrari
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-09-2010, 04:03 AM
Fudman's Avatar
Fudman Fudman is online now
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Sudbury, MA
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 6,060
Mein Auto: '02 530i Sport auto
You options are essentially correct. IMO only option 2 or 3 are worth considering.
Option 1 is correct, the dealer replacement with the same Vanos. This option is not worth considering as the problem will recur in 20K-50K
Option 2 does not exist AFAIK.
Option 3 is the Dr. Vanos option, which is a net $250 (for dual Vanos) = $400 - $150 refundable core charge.
Option 4 is the Beisan option, which is currently $60 for the dual Vanos, $30 for the single.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-09-2010, 04:17 AM
helpmyfive helpmyfive is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Ada Michigan
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 432
Mein Auto: 528i
You mean 3 or 4, right?
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-09-2010, 06:07 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by helpmyfive View Post
You mean 3 or 4, right?
I'm not sure what you're asking here.

What Fudman is referring to (and I updated it just now with his correction of my 400 dollar Dr. Vanos price because I got that wrong) are the following options (so far) assuming double VANOS (which is the most common I think and which is what I have anyway).

  1. Replace with a new OEM VANOS unit containing OEM Teflon seals & OEM Buna-N (aka Nitrile, NBR) o-rings
  2. Replace with a rebuilt VANOS unit containing OEM Teflon seals & OEM Buna-N (aka Nitrile, NBR) o-rings
  3. Replace with a rebuilt VANOS unit containing OEM Teflon seals & Viton o-rings
  4. Rebuild using a DIY kit using OEM Teflon seals & Viton o-rings
  5. ? any other options ?
In my Internet searches, I found a bunch of suppliers for option 1, and I wasn't so sure about option 2.

What I'd really like to know is which of our sponsors provide any of the options above. They get first dibs, always. So far ???? none?

Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	vanos_diagram.jpg
Views:	11788
Size:	83.9 KB
ID:	257695  

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 08:46 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-09-2010, 06:42 AM
Josh P.'s Avatar
Josh P. Josh P. is offline
Bimmerholic
Location: Philly
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,678
Mein Auto: 2001 530 SP/PP/CWP/Slush
You're over-thinking this. Yes, these are all "options" if you want to waste money. The only known issue with the Vanos unit is the seals. Thus, buying a "new" unit from BMW is a pointless waste of money. There are only two paths for a long-term fix: replace the rings with Viton or swap out your unit for a unit from Dr Vanos (which is rebuilt, not new, that's why they want your core ) that also uses Viton rings. That's it.
__________________

2001 530 Steel Blue Metallic, purchased Dec 03
SP/PP/CWP/Slushbox (I know I know)

OEM M5 bumper, 40% Huper Optik ceramic tint, Dice Silverline Pro iPod adapter, 540SP radial spokes, Zimmerman Z-Coat rotors w/ Hawk HPS pads
"Mods": driveshaft, cooling system, Vanos, CCV, PSR, VCG, FSU, spark plugs, buncha belts-n-hoses, & other things I'd just as soon forget

BMW CCA member for 12 years
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-09-2010, 07:07 AM
Fudman's Avatar
Fudman Fudman is online now
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Sudbury, MA
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 6,060
Mein Auto: '02 530i Sport auto
Quote:
Originally Posted by helpmyfive View Post
You mean 3 or 4, right?
Oops, you're right. I have trouble counting past 2.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-09-2010, 08:27 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh P. View Post
replace the rings with Viton or swap out your unit for a unit from Dr Vanos (which is rebuilt, not new, that's why they want your core ) that also uses Viton rings.
When I google for my VANOS repair options, I'm surprised not to get any sponsors.

But, I do get a LOT more hits than just the two sellers discussed above.

For example, KO Performance sells these Vanos solonoid o-rings for just a buck and a quarter each.

Are these the same o-rings we're talking about?

They sell the VANOS solonoid itself for under 120 bucks.

And the entire VANOS unit.

I guess, from what you're saying, these are the OEM Buna-N (aka Nitrile, NBR) o-rings and OEM VANOS unit (with OEM Buna o-rings) and nobody wants that. Is that right?



Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	vanos_solonoid_o-ring.png
Views:	11912
Size:	59.2 KB
ID:	257685   Click image for larger version

Name:	vanos_solonoid.png
Views:	11690
Size:	35.0 KB
ID:	257690   Click image for larger version

Name:	vanos_unit.png
Views:	11796
Size:	146.0 KB
ID:	257691  

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 09:26 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-09-2010, 08:42 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
While I hear you that there are only two viable options, when I google, I find many more than that - maybe who are potentially viable. Are they not?

For example, to continue with my simple google result, these guys (vac motorsports) offer a Viton o-ring repair option for the single-VANOS E39 528 thru 08/98 with or without "race cams" (or so they say) for just about $250.

Here's an excerpt of what they say:
"we don't settle for the equivalent brands that quickly deteriorate, but high quality Viton o-rings and long life seals throughout the assembly."

Is this option viable?

Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	vac_vanos.png
Views:	12102
Size:	291.7 KB
ID:	257694  

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 10:07 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-09-2010, 08:53 AM
doru's Avatar
doru doru is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Calgary
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 4,428
Mein Auto: 2003 530iA
The only viable option is to replace ASAP the OEM seals with Rajae's Beisan seals.
The Buna deteriorates rather quickly because the material is not meant to last in oil-based environment for too long.
Viton on the other hand is designed to "work" in oil-based fluids at high temperature and pressure (this is material used in the oil & gas industry).
If you wait too long with the OEM Buna seals, the problem worsens due to the scoring in time of the cylinder walls where the pistons "work" - the pistons will touch touch with the metallic part instead of the rubber. In this situation you will have to buy a new Vanos unit, and eventually replace the OEM seals nontheless.
In order to "alleviate" the Vanos issue, BMW has "upgraded" the software of the ECU with a patch that somhow masks the issue. The thing is, in this case, once the issue surfaces, usually it's too late to only change the seals - the damage is extensive and the whole Vanos unit has to be replaced, due to worn cylinders.
I believe all cars after 2001 have the software patch applied, and this is why owners of M54 engines don't experience the drastic Vanos issue as exacerbated as the owners of earlier models.
However, I can attest that prior to changing my seals, the car started to develop some sort of mild diesel-ish startup, which I did not really notice, until after I changed the seals. This is because the degradation is in time. The big change was right after the seals were replaced - all of a sudden the car started up very smooth. That's when you notice the first time that the OEM seals were shot. The deterioration for later cars is very discreet and therefore "tricky", because the owner believes that his Vanos is OK.
__________________
Looking for a DIY? Parts? Check this out, it might be your ticket
TMS underdrive pullies - Stewart WP - PSS9 - Beisan Vanos seals - Zimmerman cross-drilled & Akebono Euro - Deka 649 MF - 55w HID headlights - 35w HID foglights - Hualigan double din - ACS (rep) alu pedals - Euro central storage console - Breyton Magic Racing staggered wheels - M5 bumper - M5 steering wheel - Tint
Stable: e39, e53, e46 & Tribby
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 12-09-2010, 08:53 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by doru View Post
The only viable option is to replace ASAP the OEM seals with Rajae's Beisan seals.
Hi doru,

I hear you. I really do. But when I do research, I see other answers. Lots of other answers.

For example, here's somebody called "Mr. Vanos", who sells "Upgraded Viton Seal Kits".

Since they're selling the Viton seals, why wouldn't they be another option for us?

Here's what they say?
"By fitting one of our seal kits you are eliminating the chance of the seals failing again.
The main problem with the O.E seals is the material they are made from. Nitrile rubber is not as hardwearing as Viton and cannot withstand high temperature for long periods of time.
Viton is well known for its excellent (400F/200C) heat resistance. Viton offers excellent resistance to aggressive fuels, chemicals and oils.
Another major issue is the bolts that BMW supply are not strong enough to contain the pressure that vanos unit can generate. We supply you with 12.9 high tensile bolts instead of the 8.8 that BMW use
.
"


Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	mr_vanos.png
Views:	12302
Size:	225.8 KB
ID:	257696  

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 08:57 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-09-2010, 09:09 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
And, here's another outfit, Iridium Engineering Services, over in the UK, who sells the VANOS kit with Viton o-rings.

Are they (soon to be) an option?
Note: They say the E39 is "coming soon"

Here's what they say they offer (emphasis mine):

"Often maligned & misunderstood, the notorious BMW vanos system can now be repaired using our custom-manufactured kits & our technical expertise.

Featuring upgraded seal materials & modern viton o-rings throughout, our ... seal kits provide outstanding performance & reliability.
Our seal & bolt kits are sold worldwide & have received many glowing feedback reports!

Got a rough or lumpy idle & a bit of that famous "vanos-grumble"? This is fairly common ... & can usually be rectified with our popular cam-timing reset service along with our uprated solenoid seal kit, & at around 50% the cost of a 'reconditioned' unit is great value! Check out our retiming service for more information."

Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	iridium.png
Views:	11841
Size:	179.5 KB
ID:	257699  
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-09-2010, 09:53 AM
Fudman's Avatar
Fudman Fudman is online now
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Sudbury, MA
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 6,060
Mein Auto: '02 530i Sport auto
I betcha that VAC, Mr. Vanos and Iridium get their Viton seals from Raj, just like Dr. Vanos. Just a guess but it would not surprise me. Notice that none of them bother to explain anything to you. You are supposed to take the leap of faith that they are doing the right thing by selling you their new and improved Vanos or seals. And none of them show you how to actually replace your Vanos or seals, either. They're all Johnny come latelys. For me, it's Beisan FTW. There is no substitute.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-09-2010, 10:22 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
I betcha that VAC, Mr. Vanos and Iridium get their Viton seals from Raj, just like Dr. Vanos.
Hi Fudman,

I fully understand. I've read all the threads. Nobody but nobody is unhappy with Raj. And, Raj clearly gets the "patent" rights, for his efforts at finding a solution for us.

However, that debate, in and of itself, is not the point of this particular thread. There is actually a thread titled "who is Raj anyway", where we can discuss his wonderful efforts!

The main point of this thread is simply to list the viable options available to newbies.
Note: It's becoming clear the only viable options involved Viton-rubber o-rings, of which there appear to be multiple suppliers.

Once we list the viable options, we certainly can (and you guys already did) make recommendations, and I can't imagine a stronger recommendation that those from you, doru, cn90, and poolman.

As for the SOURCE of the Viton o-rings at the three places identified above, it may very well be the case they buy them from Raj (I hope he chimes in); but I'm just trying to make sense out of the data points. I'm trying for us to add value, where there is already a consensus of opinion. Sometimes the value we add changes that consensus; most of the time it just organizes what is already well known (e.g., it took fifty posts for us to come up with a well-honed ABS control module diagnostic procedure; but our teamwork paid off - and many newbies have benefited from our efforts).

However, sometimes a little bit of information is a good thing.

Take the example of the brittle PBT headlight adjuster options thread. Together, we found over a dozen viable sources for solutions, with two different aluminum suppliers (sourcing differently shaped equivalent parts at vastly different prices); and I found two different plastics manufacturers (most sourcing odometergears' Delrin thermoplastic adjusters but some making their own Nylon adjusters, again, at vastly divergent prices); and I found multiple ways of making my own headlight adjusters for just a couple of bucks (see the thread for details).

It's a GOOD THING if we can list available options that add to the generally held consensus (as long as the additional options are truly viable).

I'm still very surprised no sponsors have devised a solution though.

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 10:36 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 12-09-2010, 10:57 AM
agent15's Avatar
agent15 agent15 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Tennessee
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 598
Mein Auto: 87 325is, 02 530i Sport
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
For example, here's somebody called "Mr. Vanos", who sells "Upgraded Viton Seal Kits".
I have a hard time putting faith into any independent business that can't properly spell "independent."
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
For me, the e39 is the ... best balance of luxury ... performance ... good looks and class. Sort of the Catherine Deneuve of cars, if you get my drift.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 12-09-2010, 11:09 AM
Josh P.'s Avatar
Josh P. Josh P. is offline
Bimmerholic
Location: Philly
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,678
Mein Auto: 2001 530 SP/PP/CWP/Slush
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
I betcha that VAC, Mr. Vanos and Iridium get their Viton seals from Raj, just like Dr. Vanos. Just a guess but it would not surprise me. Notice that none of them bother to explain anything to you. You are supposed to take the leap of faith that they are doing the right thing by selling you their new and improved Vanos or seals. And none of them show you how to actually replace your Vanos or seals, either. They're all Johnny come latelys. For me, it's Beisan FTW. There is no substitute.
Raj supplies VAC, he confirmed this. Don't know about the others.
__________________

2001 530 Steel Blue Metallic, purchased Dec 03
SP/PP/CWP/Slushbox (I know I know)

OEM M5 bumper, 40% Huper Optik ceramic tint, Dice Silverline Pro iPod adapter, 540SP radial spokes, Zimmerman Z-Coat rotors w/ Hawk HPS pads
"Mods": driveshaft, cooling system, Vanos, CCV, PSR, VCG, FSU, spark plugs, buncha belts-n-hoses, & other things I'd just as soon forget

BMW CCA member for 12 years
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 12-09-2010, 11:09 AM
Fudman's Avatar
Fudman Fudman is online now
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Sudbury, MA
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 6,060
Mein Auto: '02 530i Sport auto
Yep, I think you have all the possible options pretty well covered here.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 12-09-2010, 11:12 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman
betcha that VAC, Mr. Vanos and Iridium get their Viton seals from Raj
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh P. View Post
Raj supplies VAC, he confirmed this. Don't know about the others.
Hmmmm... you both forced me into harder searches than mere basic googles.

A deeper inspection of the 3-series VANOS DIYs reveals two interesting new developments.

First off, "Mr Vanos" and "Iridium Engineering" have a "relationship" (and, my guess is they are one and the same).

Witness this web page titled "mrvanos.co.uk" which has the "Iridium Engineering" logo.

Secondly, and more to the point of where are these Viton seals coming from, they say they have a unique supplier.

Specifically:
Our [Viton] seals are specifically manufactured for us by our manufacturer with whom we developed this kit - they do not supply to anyone else!

As always, proof included below.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	BMW_VANOS_Page_1.jpg
Views:	265
Size:	153.7 KB
ID:	257715   Click image for larger version

Name:	BMW_VANOS_Page_2.jpg
Views:	338
Size:	68.5 KB
ID:	257716  
Attached Files
File Type: pdf BMW_VANOS.pdf (222.3 KB, 286 views)

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 11:14 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 12-09-2010, 11:19 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
Yep, I think you have all the possible options pretty well covered here.
Hi Fudman,

Personally, I doubt that. Just like I doubt I've eaten all the different kinds of chocolate, I'm sure there are double, triple, or even more options - wholly unbeknown to us.

But, certainly these are the MAIN options available to us.

I've updated the first post with all that we've learned (so as to increase efficiency for someone coming in later).

Here's the summary, so far, of the options in that first post:
  1. New VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings (BMW Dealership, ? who else supplies new OEM units ?)
  2. Rebuilt VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Buna-N o-rings (? does this option even exist ?) <== apparently not because nobody would want it
  3. Rebuilt VANOS unit with Teflon seals & Viton o-rings (Dr. Vanos, VAC, ? who else supplies rebuilt VANOS units ?)
  4. DIY repair kit with Teflon seals & Viton o-rings (Beisan, Mr. Vanos/Iridium, ? who else supplies a DIY repair kit ?)
  5. ? any other options ?

Last edited by bluebee; 12-09-2010 at 11:21 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 01-07-2011, 05:51 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
No matter which option you choose, for the record, this thread discusses how to test the VANOS before and after the seals are replaced.

- What is a reliable & easy-to-perform DIY objective before/after test of VANOS seals?
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 01-07-2011, 06:02 AM
poolman poolman is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: martinsville va
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 3,693
Mein Auto: 525i station wagon
Ya got 5 options-
1 Besian seals 60 bucks
2 Dr Vanos 300 bucks
3 Bmw and then have the same problems
4 Live with the problem and not fret about it
5 Sell the car
It's that simple people--either fix the problem--or I guess you can start threads
to hack around why you should and why you shouldn't--
I've always been a fix the problem--or the fly the damn plane type of guy
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 04-08-2011, 04:28 PM
alfonso12 alfonso12 is offline
El Macho
Location: Okanagan, Canada
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 203
Mein Auto: 1999 540i 6 speed sport
This is all fine and dandy but what about us guys with the V-8's? I believe my Vanos is shot as well. I have posted a video in the main E39 page "help diagnose this noise"...It's not a pronounced as the rattle I have heard on the 6 cylinder videos but have been told it's Vanos noise by a few of the boys on here. I have also read that the 540i Vanos are far less likely to suffer from this problem though? I contacted Bisien today and he said that he was in the R&D part of a repair kit for the V-8? But that it requires $650 worth of special tools! Any solutions, ideas?
__________________
E39 99 540i 6 speed Oxford Green
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 04-08-2011, 07:05 PM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 19,231
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 automatic
Quote:
Originally Posted by alfonso12 View Post
it requires $650 worth of special tools! Any solutions, ideas?
From a quick /vanos tools(F3) in the bestlinks ...
- How to make your own VANOS tools (1) & socket tools (1)

BTW, you should read my diatribe titled "the tools are (almost) always free"...
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 12-21-2011, 09:42 AM
tice03 tice03 is offline
Registered User
Location: Utah
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 98
Mein Auto: 2003 325i, M54
Does anyone else think it strange that these little o-rings are 60 bucks, and we are willing to pay it? The OEM versions (though inferior) are just a dollar or two on Pelican autoparts. Do we think that the Viton that these o-rings are made of really merits a 55 dollar hike in the price? Does that new material really increase the cost of manufacturing THAT much? Most aftermarket upgrades cost about two or three times what the original product costs. Not 20-30x the cost! Am I far off base?

I'm guessing that Beisan justifies this price because of all the research they put into it, but we know what the new material is, right?? Has anyone else attempted to make and sale these o-rings for a cheaper price? The only reasonable explanation in my view is that Beisan has a patent on using Viton for these O-rings. Does anyone know if that is the case?? Or why doesn't someone else go and make these little viton o-rings and undercut Beisan a little bit and still enjoy half the profit margin Beisan is raking in (which would probably still be around 2,000%!!

Obviously, I'm just pulling numbers out of the air, but to put my point in perspective and address the question – why so expensive??? I feel like a sucker that I actually AM going to pay this since no other manufacture has stepped up to "get our backs" and compete. Why? Is there a patent? Is this whole VANOS o-ring problem a lie that the other part manufactures are not willing to buy into? If everything IS legit, I admit that $60 is NOTHING to pay for all the benefits that supposedly come from replacing these o-rings, and I would like to not have to replace again so soon. But as I've always been a student of great business ideas and cost and profit margin analyses, I can't help but feel like we are being taken for a ride (…..ok, so that was a actually a little bit punny.. wasn't originally intending that, but I'll own it) Beisan (and probably Raj) is making WAY more money than they need to on these, unless they really have protected it with a patent (which I respect) OR that magical Viton compound significantly increases the difficulty of manufacturing the o-rings, or the Viton is 30 x more expensive to procure.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 12-21-2011, 09:56 AM
bobdmac bobdmac is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Back in Oaktown, Yay Area
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,248
Mein Auto: 2001 540i/6, '90 BMW k75s
Quote:
Originally Posted by tice03 View Post
Does anyone else think it strange that these little o-rings are 60 bucks, and we are willing to pay it?...I can't help but feel like we are being taken for a ride...
Sounds like a First World problem to me. In any event, I'm glad that someone had enough initiative to research this problem and then persevered to come up with a solution. I have no problem with a modest reward for such an effort. If you don't want to pay for such things, feel free to come up with your own alternative, or drive a different car. That's what is known as the free market.

Edit: Fixed misplaced phrase.
__________________
BMW--giving new meaning to the phrase "disposable income."

Last edited by bobdmac; 12-21-2011 at 10:06 AM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:53 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms