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E60 / E61 (2004 - 2010)
BMW 5-Series E60 Sedan was first seen in the Unites States in the fall of 2003 with a 2004 Model Year designation. The E61 wagon followed shortly there after. The E60/E61 5 series is now available as a 528i, 528xi, 535i, 535xi, 550i and a 535xi sports wagon! -- View the E60 Wiki

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Old 01-27-2020, 06:09 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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A/C Compressor - clutch or not?

E61, 2006 530xi. I suddenly have a dry bearing noise that I've tracked down to the compressor. RealOEM shows 2 possible compressors, one with a clutch and one without. I'd like to know which one I need before I take the old one off.

I thought all E60/61 used the variable compressor with no clutch, now I am confused. I've never heard the usual clack or a clutch in action and when I was tracking down a weak cooling issue the pressures stayed pretty constant so I was sure it was the variable compressor. Any thoughts?
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Old 01-27-2020, 06:32 PM
BabyUnicornTaco BabyUnicornTaco is online now
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Realoem.com should tell you what compressor you have if it is original.


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Old 01-27-2020, 06:36 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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That's my issue. It lists two. I don't see any notes of before/after or the like. I'll go study it some more tho.
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Old 01-27-2020, 07:08 PM
twh twh is online now
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I have a 2006 530xi. This is the compressor installed..."SEU17C". My compressor is making more noise the past few years, but still holding out so far.
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Old 01-27-2020, 07:11 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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This began suddenly, right after I replaced the water pump. It has no wobble or looseness but sounds awful (to me, at least.)
Thanks.
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Old 01-27-2020, 07:58 PM
twh twh is online now
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Only thing I can think of is you fouled the serpentine belt with coolant and that's making noise on the pulley. Every time I work on the cooling system and a lot of coolant is released, I hose down the front of the engine liberally with the garden hose and also replace the belt. Can't be too careful on the N52 engine.
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Old 01-28-2020, 03:51 AM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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Something interfering with belt grip makes more sense than a bad compressor. Post a photo of compressor. Clutch and clutchless compressors are noticeably different. On a compressor with clutch there is a small (~0.005") gap between the clutch plate and the pulley. You should be able to turn the plate in front of the pulley and the pulley will remain stationary. Can't do this on clutchless unit.
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Old 01-28-2020, 05:31 AM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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I wish it was that simple. I removed the belt and spun each rotating component. The only one that makes noise is the compressor.
I will go house it down, maybe even use some cleaner on it, just in case, tho.
Thanks!
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Old 01-28-2020, 05:48 AM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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If you can spin compressor pulley with belt off, then compressor has a clutch. Regardless of whether AC is clutchless or not, the pulley bearing is replaceable without having to replace the compressor. Parts are on ebay. You can get the bearing from a local supply house also.
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Old 01-28-2020, 08:28 AM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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That is what I was hoping to hear! Thanks pshovest!
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Old 01-28-2020, 08:47 AM
dharmabmw dharmabmw is offline
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Don't delay the repair. The bearing will fail catastrophicaly. The belt can wrap around the harmonic balancer with even worse results.
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Old 01-28-2020, 08:50 AM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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That is what worries me. Thanks.
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Old 01-28-2020, 11:11 AM
wcr3d wcr3d is online now
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When using realoem input the last 7 digits of your VIN to get results specific to that car.
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Old 01-28-2020, 12:18 PM
SunglassesGuy SunglassesGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plus1111 View Post
E61, 2006 530xi. I suddenly have a dry bearing noise that I've tracked down to the compressor. RealOEM shows 2 possible compressors, one with a clutch and one without. I'd like to know which one I need before I take the old one off.

I thought all E60/61 used the variable compressor with no clutch, now I am confused. I've never heard the usual clack or a clutch in action and when I was tracking down a weak cooling issue the pressures stayed pretty constant so I was sure it was the variable compressor. Any thoughts?
I have read variable, didn't realize this either. You can hear the clutch engaging - on older cars anyway. Have an assistant turn your a/c on/off an listen for it to engage.

Another thing you might try is to look up each part number and get photos, maybe you can tell from the photos.
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Old 01-28-2020, 12:25 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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My next step is to raise the car and have a closer look. There has to be some identification on it somewhere.
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I can't really remember the last time I took a car to a repair service.
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  #16  
Old 01-28-2020, 12:27 PM
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By the way, there is another thread here discussing the correct belt to use to bypass the compressor. It looks like that worked so I have an option if I can't fix it quickly.

Good thing fixing cars is a hobby of mine tho.
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  #17  
Old 01-28-2020, 02:17 PM
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The 7SEU denso compressor used on the N52 is clutchless. Below is a YouTube video of replacing the pulley and bearing on the bench, though on the car is done quite often.. There are replacement kits available on eBay. They usually have the bearing, the pulley, and the rubber inserts. Url at bottom of post. Cost is around $50. Good luck.




https://www.ebay.com/itm/A-C-Compres....c100889.m5204
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Old 01-28-2020, 03:18 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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Thanks banglenot. This is exactly what I needed.
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We have a 2006 530xi Touring and a 2008 535xi sedan.
I can't really remember the last time I took a car to a repair service.
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Old 01-28-2020, 03:54 PM
BabyUnicornTaco BabyUnicornTaco is online now
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A/C Compressor - clutch or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by plus1111 View Post
Thanks banglenot. This is exactly what I needed.


Iím in the same boat on a different BMW model. I have a similar thread. My pulley snapped away from the bearing. Iíll be using some of these videos to help me as well. My pulley appears to only need a new pulley with bearing installed from eBay or some other place. Iíll be checking your thread as well. Iím leaving my compressor installed while I do it. My ac belt fell off and cycled through the harmonic balancer somehow and can out intact. I was lucky to not suffer other issues.


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Last edited by BabyUnicornTaco; 01-28-2020 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 01-28-2020, 05:59 PM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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The N52 in my X5 has a clutch.
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  #21  
Old 01-28-2020, 06:26 PM
plus1111 plus1111 is offline
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I am fortunate to have another car to use. I will get under it soon for a close look and a model tag.
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Hobby mechanic doing my own work for 50 years or so.
We have a 2006 530xi Touring and a 2008 535xi sedan.
I can't really remember the last time I took a car to a repair service.
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  #22  
Old 01-28-2020, 06:49 PM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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Post a picture of the front of the pulley. Use "Go Advanced" and "Manage Attachments". Compressors with clutch have an extra wire going to the coil behind the pulley
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