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-   -   Valve Cover Gasket Change! (http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=626540)

mkodama 11-20-2008 09:26 PM

Valve Cover Gasket Change!
 
Finally got around to changing my old leaky valve cover gasket. Really easy to do, just time consuming. Didn't quite finish today since I ran out of time. And yes, I know the engine bay is dirty, it's gonna get cleaned up once the car is painted and out of this shop.


Removing the cabin micro-filter:

Twist the three knobs 90 degrees counter clockwise and they will pop up. Lift the cover up and out.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5444.jpg

Remove the micro-filter, it is just sitting there.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5445.jpg

Undo the 4 gold torx bolt and 4 plastic wire harness clips. The torx bots use a T30 torx bit.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5446.jpg

With the wire harness clips undone the lower part of the wire holder comes off. Pull the wires down out of the holder. Lift the micro-filter tray up and towards the front of the car.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5447.jpg

With micro-filter and housing removed.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5448.jpg

Removing Cosmetic Engine Covers:

Pry out the bolt/nut covers using a flat head screwdriver.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5449.jpg

Remove the oil cap and undo the two 10mm bolts and two 10mm nuts and remove the cosmetic engine covers.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5451.jpg

Removing Ignition Coils and Harness:

Slide the metal clip of the ignition coils using your fingers, and then pull the electrical connector out of each coil.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5453.jpg

Remove the 12 10mm bolts holding down the ignition coils. Then just pull each coil out and set them aside.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5452.jpg

Undo the small brown grounding wire and move the ignition wiring harness over to the side and out of the way.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5454.jpg

Engine with coils removed and ignition wiring out of the way.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5455.jpg

Removing Wiring Attached to Valve Cover:

Remove the wires and tubes from the metal clips.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5457.jpg

Remove the two 8mm bolts and grounding straps.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5458.jpg
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5459.jpg

Removing Crankcase Vent Tube:

Squeeze the top and bottom of the crankcase vent tube and pull off the valve cover.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5461.jpg
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5462.jpg

Removing the Valve Cover:

Remove all 15 nuts along with washer and seal.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5460.jpg

This is what happens if you repeatedly start up your car, drive it 50 feet, and then turn it off before the car warms up. Condensation mixes with the oil and you get this kinda oily foamy mixture. I suggest you clean your valve cover, remove the old gaskets, and then put in the new
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5463.jpg
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5464.jpg

No sludge, so I'm happy. :D
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5465.jpg

This is where my leak was.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5466.jpg

Happy looking camshaft lobes. Not bad after 74,000 miles.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x...a/DSC_5467.jpg

Assembly is reverse of disassembly. Also make sure you don't clamp any wires underneath the valve cover during reassembly like what I did. And don't over-tighten the valve cover bolts.

00bmw323 11-20-2008 09:30 PM

Nice job! i gotta do this soon..I just started to smell Oil burning

DesertMotorWorks 11-20-2008 09:37 PM

Very nice write-up! :thumbup:

kuksul08 11-20-2008 09:42 PM

Nice job, shoulda gone in the DIY forum :P

mkodama 11-20-2008 09:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DesertMotorWorks (Post 8933923)
Very nice write-up! :thumbup:

Thanks for the valve cover gasket Ruben! Couldn't have done it without you. :P

MATT200MPH 11-20-2008 11:42 PM

very well done. and a a good thing to add too the list of DIY lots of pictures! good work!

JK1150 11-20-2008 11:48 PM

i got mine changed at 65k per BMW's recommendation. Only $100 under extended warranty so whatever, but I thought these things were supposed to last a lot longer...

DesertMotorWorks 11-21-2008 12:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mkodama (Post 8933981)
Thanks for the valve cover gasket Ruben! Couldn't have done it without you. :P

Welcome! :thumbsup:

mkodama 11-21-2008 01:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JK1150 (Post 8934716)
i got mine changed at 65k per BMW's recommendation. Only $100 under extended warranty so whatever, but I thought these things were supposed to last a lot longer...

I got my valve cover gasket for less than half of that including shipping from Desert Motor Works, but of course it takes time to replace it.

Most rubbers deteriorate with exposure air, heat, and oils. I didn't even need to replace mine since I had no smell of oil nor did I ever have to top off on oil between changes. I probably could have gone to 100,000 miles. But as I said, it's really easy to change these out. The most exotic tool I needed was a T30 torx bit and the most time consuming part was cleaning the valve cover.

Joey325Ci 11-21-2008 04:30 AM

:clap:

Nice Job and great pics !!!

I will be doing this sometime durring the week, I just got my parts delivered :excited:

chrisca70 11-21-2008 06:45 AM

Wow your cover was a lot dirtier than my 137K, excellent job on the pics!!

pMak26 11-21-2008 09:14 AM

you did not use any RTV anywhere?

Did mine yesterday with the vanos seals but used RTV (red) on the vanos half moons and edge where vanos unit and head mate up.

GDA 11-21-2008 09:24 AM

Perfect timing. I am going to be using this next week when I got some time off to pull the cover and change plugs and O2 sensors.

Props for a well written DIY.

Mods - this should be added to the DIY sticky in the DIY section.

nitro3421 11-30-2008 08:47 PM

awesome write up, thanks!!!!

mkodama 11-30-2008 11:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pMak26 (Post 8936163)
you did not use any RTV anywhere?

Did mine yesterday with the vanos seals but used RTV (red) on the vanos half moons and edge where vanos unit and head mate up.

Nope, I didn't use any RTV. You are supposed to use it around the sharp edges of sealing surface near the end of the camshafts. I opted not to out of personal preference. No problems so far, but I haven't driven my car much.

mkodama 11-30-2008 11:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by chrisca70 (Post 8935776)
Wow your cover was a lot dirtier than my 137K, excellent job on the pics!!

:pfft: My car has been sitting in a friend's auto restoration shop for like a year now.

Patman015 11-30-2008 11:16 PM

:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup: :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

Nice nice, hope you have a nice torque wrench

mkodama 11-30-2008 11:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Patman015 (Post 8988907)
:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup: :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

Nice nice, hope you have a nice torque wrench

I actually didn't use a torque wrench at all for the entire process. I used a small ratchet and that's all. But I was very very careful not to over tighten the valve cover. There is a moderate amount of resistance as you tighten the valve cover onto the gasket, but after a little bit of that it gets a lot harder to turn and that's where I stopped. Maybe 10 ft/lbs for torque? Maybe less? :dunno:

Patman015 11-30-2008 11:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mkodama (Post 8989030)
I actually didn't use a torque wrench at all for the entire process. I used a small ratchet and that's all. But I was very very careful not to over tighten the valve cover. There is a moderate amount of resistance as you tighten the valve cover onto the gasket, but after a little bit of that it gets a lot harder to turn and that's where I stopped. Maybe 10 ft/lbs for torque? Maybe less? :dunno:

i was gonna say yea...probably inch lbs lol

Breyton-BMW 12-01-2008 03:11 AM

Good diy.:thumbsup:


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