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Seek to understand,^Value
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The best way to look at this is ...
Hi Cam,
Looking at this diagram (to figure out how the CCV works), did I draw the directions of the pressure (orange) and vacuum (yellow) in the M54 engine correctly?

Notice you do not show the direction of the thin line called "vacuum hose", so I 'guessed' at which direction the flow is going.

Likewise, the Realoem diagram for my M54 engine seems to have the "return pipe" reversed, so, that adds a bit of confusion.

Can someone correct this diagram so that we have the correct directions for the M54 CCV?


 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Your flow directions are correct except for the vacuum hose. The RealOEM parts diagram is INCORRECT. There is NO vacuum hose.
Now that's interesting.

I realize YOU have the same M54 that I do, and that you already replaced your CCV, so you should know:
- DIY: CCV Replacement on an M54 & Replacement of the CCV on M54, both by Fudman

However, from reading all the DIYs, I do know 'some' CCV's have a black orange-striped vacuum hose:
- DIY: change of the CCV / Pressure regulating valve / oil separator, 99 528i, by aioros

So, the question is, if realoem is wrong, how do we know, ahead of time, WHICH ccv's have the vacuum hose and which don't?

 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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the M54 3.0 does not have this vacuum hose. I believe rdl's experience mirrors mine.
I have a M54B25 but I'll wager it's similar (since it's an M54).

Certainly Aioros' 99 528i has the (orange-striped) vacuum line connected to the CCV.

In 'that' case, which direction is the vacuum?

  • Is the vacuum in that line a 'result' of the huge (in comparison) lines connected directly to the intake manifold?
    • In which case, the arrows should point INTO the CCV
  • Or is the vacuum in that line a 'signal' to the CCV from some other vacuum source
    • In which case, the arrows should point AWAY from the CCV
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Based on Fudman's comments, I searched for RDL's comments and found where he also confirmed his 530i also does not have the orange-striped vacuum line that Aioros has on his 99 528i.
- CCV replacement tips

BTW, my M54 does not have pt# 6 "vacuum hose" although RealOEM indicates it is supposed to be present
Here is the realoem diagram for a 11/2001 production month 530i showing the vacuum hose that isn't there.

Of course, that realoem diagram also shows a #8 which isn't described; and it shows the #7 return pipe reversed ... so, it's not infallible!

 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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if I put a rubber inflatable device over the dipstick tube, am I going to get it to expand or contract?
Details here:
- How to test the crankcase ventilation (aka CCV, CVV, PCV, CPV, & OSV) pressure regulating valve system (1)


And why are there incorrect, if they are, diagrams here?
Ummm... because the diagrams are (slightly) incorrect. But, unless you want us to draw new ones, we're stuck with the incorrect ones.



And it seems different years had different hoses, correct?
They're mostly the same. AFAIK, the key difference is that the CCV itself looks different depending on the model year, and, the orange-and-black vacuum hose is not on the newer models.


What is the simple test(s)?
For my M54, I simply placed a plastic bag over the oil filler hole:
- Pictorial DIY for an M54 spark plug replacement on a 2002 BMW 525i E39 with 95K miles

 

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I'm here searching for a definitive way to test whether the steel CCV vent tube (integral with the oil dipstick guide tube) is clogged.

Mine was totally clogged recently.

I cleaned it out - but - how would I know when it becomes clogged again?
All the diagnostics I found were for testing the CCV itself, not for testing the steel vent tube.


BTW: I live in a warm clime ... where it (almost) never freezes ... and hardly ever rains ... so ... that tells me (almost) EVERYONE needs to check to see if their dipstick guide tube is clogged (unless they have a retrofit).

Q: Without removing it, what test, if any, will tell us the dipstick guide tube is clogged?
 

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So the fuel pressure regulator in M52, connected to CCV is operated with crankcase vacuum?
I typed /m52 ccv F3 in the bestlinks and it came up with this thread which covers that issue in exquisite detail:
- Sorely needed clarification on how the M54 CCV vacuum port works on the M52 CCV valve connection to the fuel pressure regulator connection (1)



I think the purpose of taking a reference pressure this way is to provide clean, filtered source of atmospheric pressure to the fuel pressure regulator
So that all benefit, I appended this nice & interestingly logical information to that thread discussing, in detail, how the system seems to work.
- WHERE does the CCV vacuum source port go for the E39 CCV valves that are not plugged?

EDIT:
I tried to test the CCV system by checking manifold vacuum, as shown here - but I think I failed to conclude much of anything:
- How to test the crankcase ventilation pressure regulating valve system (1)
 

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I think you mean crankcase rather than manifold vacuum?
Hmmm... good point. Which vacuum 'did' I test (crankcase? or manifold?) when I ran the inconclusive vacuum test?

Looking back here, I see I wrote:

So, it appears you are correct in that the dipstick guide tube should be crankcase vacuum. Right?


Why did you fail to conclude much of anything.
Well, here are my data points:

  1. Original CCV (2002 model year)
  2. Warm dry weather (Silicon Valley)
  3. 8 inches of "crankcase" vacuum
  4. Vent pipe blow test showed no resistance
  5. No misfires
  6. Dipstick 'was' clogged solid - but it has been cleaned out
  7. No smoke whatsoever on exhaust (California smog tests are nearly perfect)
Given that conflicting information, I'm not sure WHAT the state of the CCV is in.



 

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Two years ago, my car failed vacuum at 9 inches but had no symptoms at all
Interesting. Where did you check the vacuum from? I placed my clear hose over the dipstick.

I have been meaning to doublecheck mine again just to make sure I didn't do it incorrectly so if there are other places to doublecheck the vacuum, that would be useful as a check of my procedure.

A couple of months later ... the engine then refused to idle, generated a raft of DTCs and lit up the CEL.
I had that exact problem just a few months ago:
- Does the ORDER of pcodes listed in an OBDII scanner actually matter?

A smoke test implicated the lower vent hose to the CCV, which, like yours, was holed (in fact, it was nearly broken in half!).


Even after failure, I had no smoke.
Even with that holed CCV hose, I also experienced no smoke. But there were tons of lean-misfire codes!

I conclude your CCV is failing but not so badly as to generate driveability symptoms.
I don't disagree. Plus, the CCV is definitely original, so it's a decade old at this point in time.

I'd continue to drive it but check vacuum regularly and have new CCV parts on hand.
I understand that logic. That's what I did with my cooling system. The CCV, even for you guys, is a pain. So just imagine how time consuming it will be for me!

I've never been able to understand the physics behind the blow for bubbles test.
Me neither. I don't personally think it tests anything. I said so in the aforementioned CCV test thread but I'll append your deduction also so as to add weight to the premise.
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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I think we have two good threads for testing the CCV:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > Cute little trick to diagnose blocked CCV system...
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > How to test the BMW E39 pressure-controlled crankcase ventilation system (CCV)?

So, I'm not sure which should be the canonical thread to cross-reference this information posted today (in order for others to find it more easily in the future, long after we're gone).

Just checked crankcase pressure from both the dip stick and the oil fill. Both readings about -6"wc with a warm engine.


...my CCV was bad. I just replaced and had a big rip in the diaphragm. Tested the new one with a manometer and has reading moving around from 3 to 6" WC.... I highly recommend the use of a manometer to test.
 
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