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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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  #1  
Old 02-16-2013, 09:15 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Mein Auto: 2002 BMW 540iA
Valve cover gasket leaks, coolant and CCV

I changed oil last weekend, when I was under the car, saw oil pan has some oil on it, cleaned with towel. Before the oil change, it has 5 pending codes, all related to multiple cylinder misfire, I cleaned codes after oil change. Today I notice there a little oil stain on the driveway, I opened hood, took one spark plug coil out, saw some oil in the spark plug well, also, saw a little oil on the valve cover bolts, also notice there is oil on intake manifold side so I know it is time to replace the gasket and misfire codes are probably related to the oil leaks in spark plug wells.

It is 2002 540iA. I also notice coolant level is down a little, I topped off couple of weeks ago and now the float stick in expansion tank is about 1" below the cap. I checked radiator, expansion tank and hoses, do not see any sign of leak, no white residue detected. I didn't go under the car to check though, I think valley pan gasket may leak.

One other thing is, when car is idle at stop sign or traffic light, I can smell something like oil so from what I have read it points to CCV, but I do not have any typical symptoms of a failed CCV, like while smoke, rough idle, etc. But, if CCV fails, it create high pressure in the engine and that could cause oil leaks through valve cover gasket. I wiped the CCV with paper towel but no oil there.

So, should I replace valve cover gaskets, CCV, valley pen gasket, throttle body gasket all together? Anything else should I consider to replace?

Another question, where do you usually get your part from for jobs like this? Dealer or online sources? If online, OEM or after market parts? I know many got their parts from realoem, pecilcan and autohuas, etc., any recommendations?

Oh, one more thing, the car has intermittent battery drain issue, it was not driven for few days last week and the battery was died, but after a full charge, it seems fine now, this has happened couple of times, so FSU is another part may need to be replaced, I still hasn't got time to conduct a drain test.

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2013, 09:39 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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This is a good starter set, from the bestlinks:
Supplier prices lookup comparison engine (1) & BMW salvage (junkyard) parts lookup engine (1) & BMWfans search by part number (1) & Realoem nominal prices by part number (1) & EACTuning actual prices by part number (1) & BMW of South Atlanta actual prices by part number (1) & Maxmillian BMW dealer prices by part number (1) & the most often recommended parts suppliers (1) & what BMW E39 parts & supplies are best to buy OEM (1) & joining BMWCCA to lower parts costs (1) (2) & what parts to always get OEM (1) which BMW dealers match prices (1) & in situ pictures of common parts of the M54 engine (1) & what other tandem parts to buy while you're there (1)
Finding a reputable BMW indy in your area (1) (2) & the consumers' checkbook method of finding a good mechanic (1) & repairpal labor/job/shop rates by zip code (1) & other things to consider replacing while you're already there (1)
Making sense of the most often recommended BMW diagnostic tools & cable interfaces (1) & BMW factory & dealer programming, coding, and diagnostic software such as INPA, EDIABAS, NCS Expert, DIS, EasyDIS, Progman (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9) & related BMW diagnostic-tool forums (1) (2) (3) (4) (5)
Where can one obtain the BMW KSD for flat rate unit (FRU) labor pricing (1) & the BMW TIS for technical service bulletins (1) (2) & an on-line WDS (1) & a text-searchable PDF Bentley E39 repair manual, volume I (1) (2) & the best price on paper Bentleys (1) & the Bentley Publishers Online Technical Library (1) & if you can no longer find the TIS, here's why (1)
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Your job, in return, is to read the suggested threads, where the best people will always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #3  
Old 02-18-2013, 10:45 AM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Thanks bluebee.

I am ordering parts now, intake manifold gasket, part# 1161143328 is $10.25 at Pelican, it is per set of 4 or just 1, autohausaz is also $10.96, not sure is 1 or a set of 4? Realoem listed as $27.37 as a set of 4. Really confused.
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  #4  
Old 02-18-2013, 11:12 AM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Also, for Crankcase vent valve (CCV)***65292;Uro, Hamman, REINZ or OEM?
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  #5  
Old 02-18-2013, 01:41 PM
DomS DomS is offline
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Smile

Rocker gasket cover... very common problem. There is a great instructional video on YouTube:
Regarding the gasket cover, the dealer should have some in stock. If not, I'm sure it can easily be ordered.

I don't know what mileage your vehicle has done but a cooling system replacement may be in need. Those E39 cooling systems are prone to breaking at around 100k miles from what I've read. Cooling system overhaul DIY easily found above.
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  #6  
Old 02-18-2013, 02:16 PM
JKRIT JKRIT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theWalkinator View Post
Also, for Crankcase vent valve (CCV)***65292;Uro, Hamman, REINZ or OEM?
Definitely not URO. Not anything URO. I believe people have been having trouble with Reinz VC gaskets, so that brand is becoming questionable. This job is such a PITA that you don't want to have to do it again soon, so I'd go with OEM.
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  #7  
Old 03-02-2013, 04:36 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Is this normal or correct? Take look at CCV, there is no hose to connect the right yellow outlet, I touch it with my finger, feel like it is being capped:

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  #8  
Old 03-02-2013, 06:33 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
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So your asking what you should do and your considering biting off a valley pan gasket job?

just so your clear...
when you do a VP gasket..

you do the valve cover gaskets... the , throttle body gasket water pump intake main gaskets... the orings on the cross over pipe.. breather plate manifold

dont bite this job off if your not 100% you can wrench on a car... you'll end up breaking more hose's and plastic fittings then anything else... and when you put it back together (if youdo) It probably wont run right

you should also have the water pump replaced... and while you there its a good idea to replace the belts since your taken them off as well.. and maybe some of the hose's on the front...
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  #9  
Old 03-02-2013, 06:34 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
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https://wiki.bentleypublishers.com/d...8V8+engines%29

This is going to give you the minimum on what needs to be done... But theres more.. when you get in there.. your gonna find alot of stuff is brittle and old.. and you should just do it now or youll be in there again later
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  #10  
Old 03-02-2013, 07:38 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Thanks, for now, I am going to do CCV and valve cover gasket first, will tackle valley pan issue when it is getting warmer.
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  #11  
Old 03-02-2013, 10:05 PM
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bin01123 bin01123 is offline
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Good info here. I just completed a cooling system overhaul and a value cover gasket job.

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  #12  
Old 03-03-2013, 03:29 AM
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diggyd357 diggyd357 is online now
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Wow !!! I have the EXACT same problems (almost). I did my vcg yesterday and found clumps of dried , burnt oil throughout the intake side. I had done a ccv.change a few months ago. I was having cold start issues and the.ccv. fixed the problem. Only I used a non oem ccv and now even though the cold start problem is history I am having horrible exhaust like fumes while driving and the intermittent white puffs of smoke (especially when idling for extended periods.
I don't mean to hijack, but it sounds like the people answering this thread could probably answer this question pretty quickly... Does this sound like a case of a non oem ccv showing why its always smarter to use oem ? Or am I dealing with another issue, mnifold gasket, ect... ? Thanks !
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  #13  
Old 03-03-2013, 03:56 AM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
Under the lift arms
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Depends... Sometimes oem is better other times it makes no difference... you have use your judgment when you see the new part going on
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  #14  
Old 03-03-2013, 08:39 AM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Spend 1 hour this morning try to take CCV out, only manager to get 1 screw out! It is two tight and torx screws won't help, it is so sallow and I am afraid to strip the head!

I have valve cover gasket replacement job done. A lot of oil in spark plug wells, also changed spark plugs, cleaned throttle body and MAF. Now back to CCV, I got correct tool for the job, a ratchet with T30 bit but just those screws just won't budge!
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  #15  
Old 03-03-2013, 10:26 AM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Still won't be able to unscrew the screws, spray a lot WD-40, does not do anything. Heading to store to get liquid wrench, it that does not work, then I will have to take intake manifold out and do the valley pan gasket replacement altogether, but is will be next time.
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  #16  
Old 03-03-2013, 04:02 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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I gave it up. Changed door actuator, forgot plug air bag back, air back light is on so I have to open the door panel and plug it up tomorrow. Multi-miss fire code is gone, but got two new codes, P1159 and P1161, Fuel Trim Additive Bank 1 High and Fuel Trim Additve Bank 2 High, what do they mean?
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  #17  
Old 03-03-2013, 04:03 PM
gomolka30 gomolka30 is offline
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Get yourself some anti-seize compound for all threads during reassembly. It will prevent situations like this. Does you car have other rust issues?
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  #18  
Old 03-03-2013, 05:12 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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No, no rust, the one screw I took out looks like new, they are just too tight to take out with that tiny ratchet and the sallow cap head didn't help, I tried with WD-40, and PB blaster, didn't help.

One more thing, after I replaced valve cover, fired up the engine, took car for a test drive, no rough idle or anything, but still smell burning oil, after back to the driveway, found some smoke came out under the hood, shut off the engine, opened the hood, cannot tell where the smoke coming from, fire up the car again, hood remain open for like 5 minutes, no more smoke, closed hood, gas up few times, again saw smoke coming off under the hood, open the hood, still cannot tell where the smoke came from. I guess I might drip some oil on exhaust header while taking out valve cover?
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  #19  
Old 03-04-2013, 01:39 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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I took the car to work today, was little scary, smoke comes out under hood, managed to get home, opened the hood, the smoke is coming from driver side back towards the firewall, obviously, oil is leak somewhere, it is difficult to see, and engine is hot, try to insert my hand in the back of the left bank of the engine (driver side), I think the leaks is from the lower half moon part of valve cover gasket. When I put it back in, it was difficult to get it in cleanly so I wiggled the cover back and forth few time to get it in so maybe I messed up there and the half moon did not set properly. So this sounds a redo, question is, do I have to get a another new gasket? It is just in there for 1 day and 50miles of driving so it should be fine right if I reset it properly?

Since I cannot take CCV screws out, I have to pull intake manifold out, so it is good opportunity to take care of valley pan gasket as well. Do I have to order new valley pan cover or I can just reuse the cover and put RTV Ultra-Black? I need to order parts so I want to make sure I get all the parts I need to do CCV replacement, valley pan gasket replacement.

Thanks in advance for advices.
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  #20  
Old 03-04-2013, 02:42 PM
bsell bsell is offline
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Yup...

I cursed the engineers that decided the fuel rails had to be soo close to the driver's side valve cover when I changed mine. To get the half moons into their rightful places I had to use a long screwdriver to push the half moons back into the right position after they hit the cams due to the stupid fuel lines.

Get a mirror on a stick and take a good look at the moons in question. Or maybe the rest of the VCG might not be in the right place, either way the mirror on a stick plus a good drop light to help see what's going on.
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  #21  
Old 03-09-2013, 09:23 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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Finally, redo VCG driver side, this time, I took out air box and air duct elbow out, that helped to see better, but in terms getting the cover and gasket back and seat properly, it is no help. Even with the help of wife, we tried 6 times. There just isn't enough clearance there, with the fuel lines in the way, the gasket keep being knocked out of the groove of the valve cover, messing up the RTV all over the place!

With the air boxes removed, I was able to take out only one more screw from CCV, but still 5 more I cannot, so I just pry out the diaphragm out and swapped the new one in.

Be careful when you take out screws from valve cover, don't drop washer in the spark plug well like I did, I tried every methods that I can think of, vacuum, magnet, double side tape, finally, using two bare garage door wires to fish it out, took me 2 hours to retrieve the washer, what a waste of time!


I thought I can reuse the gasket because it literally is new, but after I remove it, found out it has a crack on the corner of the half moon area and half moon itself is no good so I have to order a new gasket from a local auto part store for $27:



There just is not enough clearance, that stud there pushed half moon out of groove every time I tried to get cover back in there:


The old CCV diaphragm, in pretty rough condition:


The CCV cover is still on, cleaned it a little but it looks fine so I just put new diaphragm in:


Well, after I reassemble everything back, I did not start the car, let it sit overnight to get RTV set before to test the job tomorrow, hopefully, this time I get it right and CCV fixed, for now at least.
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  #22  
Old 03-09-2013, 09:25 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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This car now is officially running on my blood and I have picture to prove it:

Last edited by theWalkinator; 03-09-2013 at 10:17 PM.
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  #23  
Old 03-09-2013, 11:58 PM
aspensilver540 aspensilver540 is offline
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Glad you got it taken care of! Cool pix...I think I usually have scuffs on my knuckles, not sure how you bled that much yikes! Almost looks like wax from a Maker's Mark bottle.

Might want to consider OEM gaskets instead of Vic-Reinz based on forum consensus in the future (you can search and decide).
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  #24  
Old 03-10-2013, 01:59 PM
theWalkinator theWalkinator is online now
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My right hand slipped and the pinky hit that band in the picture when I was trying to loose some bolt and the latex glove did not provide any protection, cut right through on the knuckle, blood all over the place.

Still detect smoke coming from under the driver side hood, inserted my hand trying to find if it still leaks, no oil in the half moon area, so this maybe the residue oil from last time still on the exhaust and have not been completely burn out. I will drive the car on to the ramp and go under to double check.
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