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 > X Series > X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)

X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-20-2016, 10:12 PM
tallmankaa tallmankaa is online now
Registered User
Location: Vancouver Washington
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 2007 BMW X3 (E83) w/NAV
2007 BMW X3 oil leak, looks like it's seaping from the actual outside of the head ga

Anyone know how long I can go with this very minor appearing leak? I just took out a 10,000 car loan for this vehicle my buyers remorse has set In heavily. I've read all over this blog about this common oil leak with other BMWs with this same 3.0 litre engine...I am dreading getting the estimate to fix perhaps broken head bolt. Any one else discover an oil leak in there x3?I'm at 120000 miles.I love this car!
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 01-20-2016, 11:04 PM
Skorp1on Skorp1on is offline
Registered User
Location: New York
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 20
Mein Auto: BMW X3 3.0si
oil leak in the head would be a rare case.
usually, it would be either coolant, exhaust gas, or combustion gas that will be leaking out at the head gasket.
If oil is leaking through the head gasket, your oil seal rings around the pistons are shot and it accumulated from an already blown head gasket.

your oil leak might be attributed to valve cover gasket or oil filter housing gasket (OFHG). there are Youtube videos that can help guide you through to do it yourself, if you are handy. If not, you would have to budget about $800-$1000 to be done by the dealer or about $500 from an Indy.

GL
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-21-2016, 06:28 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
valve cover

bet it's the valve cover ....the aluminum bolts snap and let oil leak down onto the cats/exhaust

a simple gasket swap and aluminum bolt swap if yours were not upgraded to steel(a big red face for BMW was the massive amount of 7mm aluminum bolt failures on the valve cover) a good 20 buck successful poboy fix is.....replace the aluminum bolts with roughly 7mm diameter by 30 mm long cad plated steel with a nut under the bolt head to get correct length .....some of the holes penetrate the casting and some do not (lowes and Depot have steel metric fasteners like this) .....each hole depth/penetration seems random so test the depth to be sure you do not bottom out the bolts...put a flat washer and a spring washer on the bolt .....grease up the bolts very well and snug them up.....they only need a few foot pounds....do the three that run in the center with just the full length 30mm steel bolt with one flat washer and one spring washer.....we have seen many N52 engines with repeated bust aluminum bolts.....usually the four on the lower front of the valve cover.....the customers who opt for the poboy steel fix have no further issues



also .....if you are careful in removing the old aluminum gasket you can permatex blue both sides and put it back on ......this will put you in the "Super" poboy league but sometimes that's all the budget a person can muster .......this permatex fix has works for decades.....best wishes

Last edited by swampX3; 01-21-2016 at 06:31 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-21-2016, 06:58 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
valve cover etc links



https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

Last edited by swampX3; 01-21-2016 at 06:59 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-21-2016, 09:16 AM
tallmankaa tallmankaa is online now
Registered User
Location: Vancouver Washington
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 2007 BMW X3 (E83) w/NAV
Thank yo GL and SwampX

Its very inspiring to hear this may just be something other than oil seeping from the head gasket. I haven't taken anything apart to actually see where the leak is coming from. All I can see is a very moist looking gasket edge that extends from between the head and the engine block on the right side of the motor under near the intake manifolds are.I can see well enough that it appears dry from beneath the valve cover gasket area. Its just seems to be leaking in a little corner of the engine. The front right corner. Im hoping someone will tell me that it may just be a deteriorating gasket and not indeed the head bolt in that area broken or stretched. When I get a chance and some good lighting in my garage, I will try my best to snap a picture later.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-21-2016, 09:52 AM
timarnold timarnold is offline
TA
Location: Maryland
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 850
Mein Auto: 2003 bmw 525i 2005 X3
Right front corner could also be the Vanos Oil Line or possible the Oil Filter Housing Gasket.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-21-2016, 06:48 PM
dukedkt442 dukedkt442 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Upstate, NY
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,417
Mein Auto: 08 E83; '86 442; 84 GMC
If you are leaking oil out from your head gasket, your engine will barely be running. If you just bought the car, it has a 3 month warranty if purchased from a licensed dealer.

I'd bet it is your VCG and OFHG; they ALL fail. Luckily, they're also easy to replace. The common oil leak you've read about are those two items, not the head gasket. Oil weeps down, collects on any ledge, and runs along the ledge towards the back of the engine and/or down the side of the block. If you're at 120k miles, you're about 20-30k miles overdue for those 2 gaskets. Due the heat exchanger gasket too.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-21-2016, 08:49 PM
tallmankaa tallmankaa is online now
Registered User
Location: Vancouver Washington
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 2007 BMW X3 (E83) w/NAV
I took a closer look and yes you are right. I have leaks around multiple locations around the valve cover area. No warranty, I bought it as is. They are easy to replace though. I love this car though
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-22-2016, 05:15 AM
BMWaufKS BMWaufKS is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: N.E. KS
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 367
Mein Auto: 2008 X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by swampX3 View Post
.....we have seen many N52 engines with repeated bust aluminum bolts.....
Thanks for the info from me too! I'm betting I'll have to replace the valve cover gasket on my recently acquired 2008 too. Nothing obvious yet, but ...

When the aluminum bolts are broken, how hard are they to remove once the cover is off? Is the stud left exposed (then Vice-Grips), or must we drill and use an extractor, etc.?
__________________
-------------------------------
Restoring a highly-optioned
2008 BMW X3 M-Sport
Modifications:
All stock except dashcam
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-22-2016, 06:16 AM
R ODonnell R ODonnell is offline
Retired
Location: Usually on the road.
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 815
Mein Auto: 2009 E83 X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWaufKS View Post
Thanks for the info from me too! I'm betting I'll have to replace the valve cover gasket on my recently acquired 2008 too. Nothing obvious yet, but ...

When the aluminum bolts are broken, how hard are they to remove once the cover is off? Is the stud left exposed (then Vice-Grips), or must we drill and use an extractor, etc.?
If you have a black valve cover you have steel bolts. Only the earlier engines with magnesium covers have aluminum bolts.

You should replace the entire valve cover as the vent valve is integral. Getting ready to do mine next week. Mines weeping and dripping on the cat.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_6094-1.jpg
Views:	96
Size:	106.5 KB
ID:	547376  

Last edited by R ODonnell; 01-22-2016 at 06:52 AM. Reason: Add Info
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-22-2016, 07:28 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
bust Alu bolts

the first thing to do when removing any old style bmw valve cover is to heat the plastic CCV piping quick connects and as much pipe as possible with a hair drier or a pro style heat gun .....DO NOT MELT THEM !........the heat will make all the difference in squeezing the release points together and give you a fighting chance of getting the plastic pipe off without a crack....this process takes 2 mins and can save 4 hours of grief and pain !

most bust aluminum bolts can be backed out easily with a pick and patience.....they shear most often at the head casting face......many folks don't realize they've popped and the sheared off bolt heads and washers just sit there and spin letting the leak progress....you can simply lift out the bust tops with a your fingers

the usual offenders are lower left at engine front just by radiator....the bolts will often just spin out if the tapped hole they are in is open all the way thru.....use extractors with caution and drill dead center of the bust bolt with a small drill to get an accurate start ......if you have access to a small machinists center drill its much better.....BUT .....if you're one in a trillion and have one bust at the bulk head or back by the O2 sensors you may have hell ......so go slow with mirrors and lights...get a mini right angle drill and do your best to spin them out

a super poboy trick for these bust bolts is to use a mini C clamp with steel faces and just clamp the outside of the valve cover any place you cannot get a bad actor bolt out or as a temporary fix to stop a bad leak......you can also just drill a new hole and thru bolt that location

if you want to remain sane ....do not go back with aluminum bolts ! .....use the cad plated steels from the earlier post .......and ....remember ......these bolts only require a bit more than hand snug......permatex both sides of the gasket.......the quality of the imported gaskets has decreased.....best wishes
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-22-2016, 07:36 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
aluminum bust valve cover bolts removal tips

the tease them out with picks method

Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-22-2016, 07:42 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
good links on the broken bolts fix

https://www.google.com/search?client...UTF-8&oe=UTF-8


also get the other gaskets like the valvetronic motor one plus the speed sensor pickup mentioned in the bavauto blog link......BUT .....don't use the aluminum bolts they and others sell as one time use .....they should update their websites with steel alternatives......this snafu has caused much reworkhttp://blog.bavauto.com/6409/bmw-n52...i-2-5si-3-0si/

Last edited by swampX3; 01-22-2016 at 07:45 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-22-2016, 09:39 AM
tallmankaa tallmankaa is online now
Registered User
Location: Vancouver Washington
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 5
Mein Auto: 2007 BMW X3 (E83) w/NAV
My valve cover is shiny black. So I shouldnt have a problem with bolts...right?
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-22-2016, 10:38 AM
swampX3 swampX3 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New Orleans
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 3,201
Mein Auto: bmw++many
mini beam clamps for poboy bust bolt fix

double check ....BUT ....the plastic valve covers were supposed to have steel bolts

here is an example of the mini beam clamp style you can use to replace a bust bolt on a valve cover ....temporary to stem oil dripping onto hot exhausts and cats or forever if you can't get the bolt out

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Wide-Mouth-B...MAAOSwd0BV5Heu
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-22-2016, 06:41 PM
Willie G Willie G is offline
Registered User
Location: Parker, CO
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 22
Mein Auto: 2007 X3
Nearly all of the aluminum bolts have a blue paint dot on the head - easily spotted.

Or, if you're a Doubting Thomas like me, use a magnet (aluminum isn't magnetic).

BTDT.
__________________
"Your 2007 X3 is at home on all paved and unpaved roads. You can operate your vehicle on uphill and downhill gradients with a maximum slope of 50%. The permitted side tilt is 32%. While driving watch carefully for obstacles such as rocks or holes. Try to avoid these obstacles whenever possible."
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 01-22-2016, 08:17 PM
R ODonnell R ODonnell is offline
Retired
Location: Usually on the road.
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 815
Mein Auto: 2009 E83 X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by tallmankaa View Post
My valve cover is shiny black. So I shouldnt have a problem with bolts...right?
Yes. And the new valve covers come with the bolts and gaskets.

Here is the best video on the subject I've ever seen. He leaves nothing out.

Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 01-23-2016, 04:04 AM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Melbourne Australia
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 173
Mein Auto: Touareg TDI
Been a while but I had oil leaks as well around the head gasket but the cause was the EGR vale was blocked or dirty, resulting in the motor being pressurised and forcing the oil in to strange places. I had notice a real clatter after start that disappeared when warm and once EGR fixed this went away as well.
__________________
VW Touareg V6 TDI 4Motion with a smooth as AISIN 8 speed auto gearbox that WORKS!
X3 3.0d 2006 (MY07) sold
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 01-27-2016, 02:13 PM
cloudboy cloudboy is offline
Registered User
Location: Massachusetts
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 51
Mein Auto: X3 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by dukedkt442 View Post
If you are leaking oil out from your head gasket, your engine will barely be running. If you just bought the car, it has a 3 month warranty if purchased from a licensed dealer.

I'd bet it is your VCG and OFHG; they ALL fail. Luckily, they're also easy to replace. The common oil leak you've read about are those two items, not the head gasket. Oil weeps down, collects on any ledge, and runs along the ledge towards the back of the engine and/or down the side of the block. If you're at 120k miles, you're about 20-30k miles overdue for those 2 gaskets. Due the heat exchanger gasket too.
So I brought my car in for a few other problems to a new indie I found. He is telling me now (over the phone) that the filter gasket and cooler gaskets are leaking, and that there is a leak in the oil pan as well. I still need to go down there and get the actual written up estimate. He is giving me a price of about $1200 to fix all of that. What kind of prices do indies normally charge to replace these filters? Unlike Tallmankaa I am well over the X3, and not sure I want to throw any money into it. But I still owe on it, so need to decide if it is worth the investment for trade-in value.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 01-27-2016, 05:18 PM
dukedkt442 dukedkt442 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Upstate, NY
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,417
Mein Auto: 08 E83; '86 442; 84 GMC
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudboy View Post
So I brought my car in for a few other problems to a new indie I found. He is telling me now (over the phone) that the filter gasket and cooler gaskets are leaking, and that there is a leak in the oil pan as well. I still need to go down there and get the actual written up estimate. He is giving me a price of about $1200 to fix all of that. What kind of prices do indies normally charge to replace these filters? Unlike Tallmankaa I am well over the X3, and not sure I want to throw any money into it. But I still owe on it, so need to decide if it is worth the investment for trade-in value.
If the OFHG and HE gaskets are leaking, that is easy; took me less than an hour. I doubt the oil pan is leaking, but if it is, $1200 is probably a real good price for all of that considering the front axle runs through the pan.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 01-28-2016, 05:52 AM
timarnold timarnold is offline
TA
Location: Maryland
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 850
Mein Auto: 2003 bmw 525i 2005 X3
Get a quote for doing just the OFHG & HE gaskets. The oil pan gasket may be leaking, but you likely will find that it is a pretty minor leak that you may elect to live with. There is really little to nothing in the way of time savings for combining the jobs.
Reply With Quote
Reply

See More Related BMW Stories


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > X Series > X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
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 04:51 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2015 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms