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Discussion Starter #1
I purchased a 2006 BMW 550i. It had a massive coolant leak but I got a great deal on it. I found that a plastic T coolant joint disintegrated under the intake manifold. That explains the massive leaking at the back of the engine and the front. The fluid would just puddle on top of the valley cover and spill over everywhere it could.

I do not know if there are other leaks but I will do a pressure test when the work is done. My question is I know this N62 engine has a lot of problems with the transfer pipe leaking. I see no evidence of it leaking in the front (weep hole has no fluid on it) and the back is probably fine too. I already ordered the collapsible pipe but I am having second thoughts. There is some risk in creating a leak while trying to prevent a future leak.

Should I just leave the original pipe intact in the valley or try to be proactive here? I don't know what to do.
 

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I would be tempted to not change the coolant transfer pipe if you replace the T fitting and hose and there are no more leaks after pressure testing the cooling system. But most of the labor for changing the coolant transfer pipe is getting the intake off. My luck would be I don't change the transfer pipe and two weeks later it does start leaking and I would have to remove the intake again. You already have the pipe so there are a few additional parts to get when changing it.

I had a leaking valley pan last year and I went ahead and changed the transfer pipe even though it was not leaking. I didn't want to do the labor a second time plus pay twice for parts that are not reusable. I have a second car so I was able to take my time and make sure I did a thorough job reassembling everything. I pressure tested the cooling system after replacing the transfer pipe and valley pan and had no leaks. So I continued putting the intake and everything else back on. It would be easy to open the valley pan if you did have a leak with the replacement pipe.
 

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I purchased a 2006 BMW 550i. It had a massive coolant leak but I got a great deal on it. I found that a plastic T coolant joint disintegrated under the intake manifold. That explains the massive leaking at the back of the engine and the front. The fluid would just puddle on top of the valley cover and spill over everywhere it could.

I do not know if there are other leaks but I will do a pressure test when the work is done. My question is I know this N62 engine has a lot of problems with the transfer pipe leaking. I see no evidence of it leaking in the front (weep hole has no fluid on it) and the back is probably fine too. I already ordered the collapsible pipe but I am having second thoughts. There is some risk in creating a leak while trying to prevent a future leak.

Should I just leave the original pipe intact in the valley or try to be proactive here? I don't know what to do.
Welcome to the forum .

It's not a matter of if it will leak , it's a matter of when . How many miles on the car ? If you want peace of mind , just replace it proactively . It will save you the head ache later if she blows ..
 

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what part number did you change?

Ive been dealing with a VERy very little leak for a while now.. at first i think it was the cross over pipe.. but now im almost certain it is not

Shy of being like you and ripping apart something that is not broken.. I wounder if mine was already replaced.. The car had a lot or work done to it b4 i took ownership of it.. BUT the previous owner didnt know if that pipe had been done
*he just payed what they wanted

Its not that bad of a job.. Ive done it on other peoples cars.. but not my own yet.. Its just a few hours of labor and working on top of the motor


In hiensite, ive had the best luck with bmws that only ask for a half a cup of fluid every few months... Its like a auto bleed procedure or something.. with the slight leak the cooling system never really gets to full pressure.. and hoses and pipes seem to last a lot lot longer...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The problem is I already opened the valley pan before having second thoughts on the whole change out. Since I noticed that the valley pan seal is completely flat I figured the chances now of a leak putting it back on is great. So I ended up ordering a new valley pan only because of the seal and didn't want to take a chance on DIY liquid seals. Seemed like most places recommended this. The logical thing seems to move forward with my original intent and replace it since I spent a lot of time researching how to get the intake off and all the connections.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
It's the Coolant Recovery Tank Hose part #17 12 7 542 540. My Rover has a small leak too - so small it's not worth worrying about. I do just like you - add a bit of coolant every so often and yes I too believe it saves wear and tear on your hoses. I could add a sealer but I have read it could also seal things you don't want sealed lol.

The problem with the new part is it has the exact same plastic T joint that failed before and so I ask myself why would I want to install the same bad design again? Today I am going to take the hoses to a place like NAPA and see if they have a metal T joint. Not only do I think I can find a cheap and much more reliable T joint I only need a couple feet of cheap coolant hose and knock this out for $10 or less.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have heard other people say it's only a matter of time so I was actually looking for statistics on what percentage of cars had this issue. If 30% of cars have had this leak then seems to me I have a 70% chance I could be OK.

The car has 120k miles on it - relatively low for a 2006.
 

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I still have my feet in the water with the e60...

If its anything like the e39 @ 240,000 miles... thee entire cooling system will have to be replaced
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Anyone have experience with the URO replacement pipe? I received it in the mail today and I'm not impressed with the quality. Very thin metal and the instructions came out of a printer stapled together - not very professional. Looks like there is only a 1 year warranty so I'm trying to find reviews on it. One review said after 2 months it was leaking more than it was before - maybe he didn't do it right I don't know but that's scary. And if an isolated incident how long will this last on average? Will I be replacing this with a better one in 2 years only because I was trying to replace the original that doesn't seem to be leaking? Decision decisions...
 

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I used the URO pipe and changed it earlier this year. Probably February or March. I searched on it and there had been several people using it and I don't recall anyone complaining later about leaks. One thing that is probably important is to thoroughly clean out the front seal and rear o-ring grooves. My rear o-ring groove was clean but there was a lot of old seal in the front groove. I spent a lot of time, maybe 30-45 minutes cleaning out the groove until I could not see any old material. I have not had any leaks in 5-6 months.
 

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Anyone have experience with the URO replacement pipe? I received it in the mail today and I'm not impressed with the quality. Very thin metal and the instructions came out of a printer stapled together - not very professional. Looks like there is only a 1 year warranty so I'm trying to find reviews on it. One review said after 2 months it was leaking more than it was before - maybe he didn't do it right I don't know but that's scary. And if an isolated incident how long will this last on average? Will I be replacing this with a better one in 2 years only because I was trying to replace the original that doesn't seem to be leaking? Decision decisions...
My coolant pipe went at 95,000 miles and got no warning , no little leaks or any loss of coolant .. Lucky for me I was at my buddies shop when she blew . Right after I parked , stepped out of the car and she was pissing coolant out the weep hole .

So I pulled her in the shop and installed a Euro pipe . Its not as complicated as people make it out to be .

Feel confident with the Uro pipe .. Im at 125,000 miles now and Ive had no issues .
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Really? No slow leak? Wow. That's scary. I just called URO and they said there is a lifetime warranty. Just call them and they send you a replacement. That's nice they stand by their products - but that doesn't do me any good when it takes me 20 hours to install lol. So the Euro pipe is the more expensive correct? Glad to hear no leaks. I also saw some people order the cheaper stainless but then ordered the seals from URO because they liked those better than what came with their stainless kit.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Good to hear. I did remove that smaller pipe from the pump to the pan - comparing that to a new one it was still in great condition thus has me wondering if that's in great condition the seals on the transfer pipe could be in great condition too. If many people are getting 200k or more on the original then I'm tempted to just seal her back up with a new pan and gasket and wait. By then I may have to replace the water pump and manifold gaskets again anyway if it holds out over 200k+.
 

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If you are replacing the valley pan, why not complete the job and replace the coolant pipe. You are probably only adding and extra hour of work to remove and replace the pipe at that point. It's not the pipe that fails it's the seals. I just did mine and the old seals are definitely dried and compressed compared to the new seals.
 

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Good to hear. I did remove that smaller pipe from the pump to the pan - comparing that to a new one it was still in great condition thus has me wondering if that's in great condition the seals on the transfer pipe could be in great condition too. If many people are getting 200k or more on the original then I'm tempted to just seal her back up with a new pan and gasket and wait. By then I may have to replace the water pump and manifold gaskets again anyway if it holds out over 200k+.
Don't be lazy , you have already done the bulk of the work , having the manifold off and the pan out . It doesn't make any logical , practical or economical sense ,, not install the pipe at the stage your in . Install the pipe and be done with it , and avoid the chance of it failing and it breaking you down and stranded .. Then have to do the same work again twice ...

Preventive maintenance is cheaper than corrective maintenance ..
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I ordered the pipe but I decided NOT to replace the transfer coolant pipe at this time. I figured there were just about the same risks involved - leaving the old one in vs. putting a new one in without any reliable data on how long the new pipes would last.

Having said that I fixed my other main problem - coolant Y hose blowout under the manifold. I ran a pressure test and I still notice a small leak coming OUT of the bell housing - not around it. I still have everything off minus the coolant system and I can see there is no leak from the valley pan gasket.

Could it be something other than the gasket leak from the pan inside the bell housing? I am trying to find out where the weep hole is at the back of the engine - is it inside the bell housing? If the rear gasket of that transfer coolant pipe is leaking my understanding is that it will leak out of a rear weep hole. Where is this weep hole located? At this point I don't know if it's that seal on the rear of the transfer pipe or is it the pan gasket in the bell housing.

Also anyone use gasket sealer with great success on a small leak without causing other problems?
 
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