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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
I haven't found the plastic pin yet, but haven't really tried to dislodge it from inside the (curvy, complicated) intake either. I suppose it's always possible that it got ingested and digested by the mighty I6 motor. This is when it's a good thing it's plastic (though if it wasn't, I'd probably NOT be doing all this...).

I suppose the prudent thing to do is to replace both DISA valves... I really don't want to repeat this job any time soon! I think the photo Fred posted is the "right" (inside) DISA valve. I haven't even bothered to take that one out of the newly-extracted intake (leaving as much intact as I can so I don't have to remember more than the approximately 1,255 steps to put this beast back together).

BTW, the inside of the intake is pretty oily, so there's no doubt that the oil separator was overdue for replacement.

Now just have to drain the oil (underway) and coolant (soon) and get that oil filter housing off. Long day!
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Now all that remains is ordering a lot of parts, and putting it all back together. I decided to just go for it so I don't have to think about doing any of this ever again... The valve cover gasket, DISA valves, oil filter housing gasket, oil separator (with all the hoses).

The only remaining question: Do I throw in a new starter while I'm at it? 155,000 miles, and it appears to be original.
 

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The only remaining question: Do I throw in a new starter while I'm at it? 155,000 miles, and it appears to be original.
A cursory google on bmw starter life expectancy lead to this thread, which says you're due around 150k. But also that aftermarket starters have a higher rate of failure. For what it's worth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Where did you find the flap and pin? Was the flap stuck under an intake valve? What about the pin?
The flap was floating around in the back half of the intake (hence the misfires on 4, 5 and 6). I haven't found the pin, but haven't really shaken the intake hard to dislodge it if it's stuck in a gunky, oily corner. I'm not too concerned about the pin though - I suspect it's long gone out the exhaust. ;-)

A cursory google on bmw starter life expectancy lead to this thread, which says you're due around 150k. But also that aftermarket starters have a higher rate of failure. For what it's worth.
I do think it's probably overkill in my case, but I really (!!!!) don't want to pull that intake again any time soon, so will be ordering a new starter. I just need to decide WHICH starter. It certainly won't be a Chinese no-name unit. Maybe a rebuilt... I'll do some digging before I put in my big (!) parts order today.
 

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I'm at 110K miles on my 2006 530xi. Need to get the VCG done at some point. Been thinking of pulling the intake manifold and doing the DISA and oil separator at the same time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 · (Edited)
I'm at 110K miles on my 2006 530xi. Need to get the VCG done at some point. Been thinking of pulling the intake manifold and doing the DISA and oil separator at the same time.
My oil separator was done at like 160,000 km. The rubber seal on the spring inside lost its elasticity and that's all it took. If your engine cap has notable suction, it's time.
That was my thinking as well - "while I'm in the area"... The things I am doing:
1) Valve Cover Gasket (doesn't look like was leaking TOO bad, but definitely due)
2) Both DISA valves
3) Crankcase vent valve (PCV) and hoses
4) Starter (yeah, I couldn't think about digging in that deep again, or losing it on a road trip). A new Bosch starter was only a few bucks more than a rebuilt.
5) Oil filter housing gasket (including the one on the sandwiched oil cooler). This turned out to be the main source of my engine's leak - obvious once you tear it down to a near bare block. Doing an oil change since I have to drain it anyway (happily, it was due).
6) Power steering reservoir (the filter is obviously compromised, so will do a full flush upon install of the new reservoir).

I took the time to pull the injector rail out and test-fired each of them (using residual pressure in the rail), just to make sure they all looked good (they did)

And when I get all that done, I get to do the Guibo (aka flex disc) and center bearing on the driveshaft (requires pulling the exhaust and heat shield).

What fun! ;-)
 

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Having this very discussion over on the E90 forum albeit regarding converting a non DISA to DISA on 328s for more torque. There are a few aftermarket OEM options. Vaico is one of the possible lower cost options as opposed to going for OE.
 

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There are definitely repair kits for the DISA units on M54 engines. In all my searches, I have not seen any for the N52, though you would think that might be one by now.

Not suggesting that Vaico is the snazz, just a possible option. Hopefully it's better than the Uro one......
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
I went with Vaico DISAs. The cost of the BMW valves was just crazy. Vaico seems to be a legit brand.

On my E46, I had more time (just a light rattle from the DISA, no failure) and ordered the German Auto Solutions kit to rebuild the existing valve. I was very happy with it, and IIRC it was a lot less money, and probably much more reliable. Here's a link to the kit for the N54, but as dharmabmw said, they don't appear to have one for the N52 (sadly).
 

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Sitting in a parking lot, waiting for the flatbed. Sigh.

The car was running fine when my wife drove it about 20 mi and parked. On starting, there was a loud ticking noise that sounds like it's from the valve train. Not your slightly misadjusted lifter noise, but a really loud, ugly sound. Along with that, I'm getting misfire codes on cylinders four five and six. The car obviously struggles to start, and runs really lumpy when it does.

I can try to post a video of the sound later, but it's nothing like 99% of the videos talking about valve ticking. It sounds for all the world like a lifter has come loose, or fallen off. I don't know if that would cause misfires on multiple cylinders like that, or not.

Oh well, I was planning on doing that pesky leaky valve cover gasket anyway. Just not this week. :)

Anyone want to try to gently break to me what I'm in for? :)
Sitting in a parking lot, waiting for the flatbed. Sigh.

The car was running fine when my wife drove it about 20 mi and parked. On starting, there was a loud ticking noise that sounds like it's from the valve train. Not your slightly misadjusted lifter noise, but a really loud, ugly sound. Along with that, I'm getting misfire codes on cylinders four five and six. The car obviously struggles to start, and runs really lumpy when it does.

I can try to post a video of the sound later, but it's nothing like 99% of the videos talking about valve ticking. It sounds for all the world like a lifter has come loose, or fallen off. I don't know if that would cause misfires on multiple cylinders like that, or not.

Oh well, I was planning on doing that pesky leaky valve cover gasket anyway. Just not this week. :)

Anyone want to try to gently break to me what I'm in for? :)
I had an X5 that had exactly the same codes... and behavior / it was a timing chain. It ran, barely, until it didn't anymore. :( Run it as little as possible until you're sure ...good luck!
 

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Sitting in a parking lot, waiting for the flatbed. Sigh. The car was running fine when my wife drove it about 20 mi and parked. On starting, there was a loud ticking noise that sounds like it's from the valve train. Not your slightly misadjusted lifter noise, but a really loud, ugly sound. Along with that, I'm getting misfire codes on cylinders four five and six. The car obviously struggles to start, and runs really lumpy when it does. I can try to post a video of the sound later, but it's nothing like 99% of the videos talking about valve ticking. It sounds for all the world like a lifter has come loose, or fallen off. I don't know if that would cause misfires on multiple cylinders like that, or not. Oh well, I was planning on doing that pesky leaky valve cover gasket anyway. Just not this week. :) Anyone want to try to gently break to me what I'm in for? :)
Timing chain or belt.
 
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