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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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Old 02-12-2012, 12:42 PM
reo11 reo11 is offline
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Location: Arkansas
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 57
Mein Auto: 1999 E39
Thumbs up $3 Secondary Air System repair

After chasing gremlins related to fault codes P1421 & P1423 for a while now to no avail: (Confirmed air pump was working, replacing the "sponge" filter on top of the air pump, and replacing the check valve off the exhaust manifold), I used the wet finger vacuum check tool and determined that there was not enough vacuum in front of the check valve when the engine was cold - immediately after starting.

I finally traced the vacuum line back from the check valve (pic 1) and noticed a pinhole in the plastic tubing (pic 2). This hole was located right above and between the two O2 sensors. All of the rubber vacuum tubing on this section was dry-rotted, so I replaced the whole length of it. The only difficult parts were getting the old rubber off the nipple under the back of the intake, and finding that sucker again in order to put the new tubing on.

Ok, so overall I spent more than $3 bucks, but the valve and filter were due to be replaced anyway.
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:46 PM
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goosefoot33 goosefoot33 is offline
Location: Hudson, MA
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 1,855
Mein Auto: 01 330Ci/02 525iT
Nice work! Want to solve my P1421 code? I'll give you $5!

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Old 02-12-2012, 02:02 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Location: Sundance Mesa, NM
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Mein Auto: 540/6, '16 Highlander XLE
On the 540's they dry rot where the tubing plugs into the side of the sec air valve.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:11 PM
JoePH JoePH is offline
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Location: Cleveland
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 30
Mein Auto: 97 528i
I think they can dryrot everywhere lol. Heat and age. Good job, why pay someone $$$ to run a tiny rubber airline across the engine bay. Was your check valve on the exhaust ok or was it actually bad? Thought about replacing mine or pulling it to test.
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Old 02-12-2012, 11:49 PM
bobdmac bobdmac is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 540i/6, '90 k75s
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Old 02-13-2012, 10:25 AM
Blight67 Blight67 is offline
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Location: Cupertino, CA
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 91
Mein Auto: 2002 530i Sport Pkg
Had you previously replaced the hose? At least on my e39, that area of hose where you have a leak is actually a plastic pipe, which I believe is more resistant to leaks. This is more evident on the realoem diagrams (part #3):

The dryrot issue is worst at the the check valve, presumably due to the high heat. I would think that having the hose close to the exhaust manifold would also accelerate the hose aging.
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