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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
See attached PDF and photos.

Note - could be in my head, but I found the upgrade to the K&N Air Filter to produce a noticeable improvement to power/acceleration.

2003 BMW 530i (E39) Engine Air Filter DIY

Difficulty : Easy
Time Required : 5 minutes

2003 BMW 530i (E39) Engine Air Filter DIY

Difficulty : Easy
Time Required : 5 minutes

Parts :

K&N 33-2070 Replacement Air Filter (available at Amazon, Spring 2011 for $35.93 – eligible for free shipping)

OEM : MANN C25114 $15.00 (Part # 13721730946)

1)Facing the windshield, the engine air filter is located at the front right of the engine bay

To access the air filter, stand by the front driver wheel, press in the side release tabs and pull the air filter tray directly up and towards you. This may require some effort.

2) Remove the old filter by lifting up and out. Note that air flows into the chamber underneath the filter and flows up through the filter and out the top side. Unlike the cabin filters, there is really only one way this filter can fit into the tray - with the rubber gasket on top.

3) Vacuum chamber and wipe down with wet rag if necessary. Replace air filter tray by sliding the unit back in until the side tabs lock into place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
There has been some debate as to whether replacing the OEM paper style filter with an oiled filter such as the K&N is a prudent move as some believe it may damage the MAF sensor and introduce larger size contaminants into your engine/oil.

For those of you looking for a 'performance' high flow, oil free, paper filter option, the aFe is highly regarded and available for the e39 :

afe Pro Dry S air filter 31-10015 (avail at amazon for $53 as of 3/2011)

http://afepower.com/shop/details_new.php?partno=31-10015&
 

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Engine Air filter on V8 engines (E39) is on the other side of the engine compartment but just as easy to replace, did it in the car park where I bought it and left the old one for recycling!
 

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There has been some debate as to whether replacing the OEM paper style filter with an oiled filter such as the K&N is a prudent move as some believe it may damage the MAF sensor and introduce larger size contaminants into your engine/oil.

For those of you looking for a 'performance' high flow, oil free, paper filter option, the aFe is highly regarded and available for the e39 :

afe Pro Dry S air filter 31-10015 (avail at amazon for $53 as of 3/2011)

http://afepower.com/shop/details_new.php?partno=31-10015&
They are now $65
 

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After changing my filter, I couldn't get the tabs to snap in place. Removed the filter - still couldn't get the tabs to snap in place. Anyone else have this problem? What next? I'm running without the tabs snapped. TIA.
 

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After changing my filter, I couldn't get the tabs to snap in place. Removed the filter - still couldn't get the tabs to snap in place. Anyone else have this problem? What next? I'm running without the tabs snapped. TIA.
First make sure housing is firmly down all round, then using a short metal bar or shaft of a screwdriver, holding ends in fingers of both hands apply pressure in centre of the long section of loop curve on clip as if you were trying to straighten it out, this will elongate the clip and it should snap on.
 

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Sorry that I wasn't clear: No "clip" on my air filter cover - the cover you have to remove to replace the air filter. My air filter cover (2002 530i) has two integral small plastic tabs - one on each end -to hold it in place. I can't get these to snap in.
 
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