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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 09-30-2012, 02:15 PM   #1
BigDRick323
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Leak. HELP NEEDED...

See pics, but oil level is perfect, power steering level - not sure. Ran it through wash - not good enough to get oil off the bottom.
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Old 09-30-2012, 03:06 PM   #2
a32axo
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Mine looks the same way almost with a tint of yellowish too it, can figure out where it's coming from, my oil seems fine also. But has to be leaking from some where.
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Old 09-30-2012, 03:44 PM   #3
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more pics.
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Old 09-30-2012, 04:38 PM   #4
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I had similar leaks to you Rick. I replaced my OFHG yesterday... When I took the housing off there was quite a bit of oil in the valleys of the block. I'm hoping this was it.
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Old 09-30-2012, 05:09 PM   #5
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I'll check it out, can you point me to a thread on how to replace it?
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Old 09-30-2012, 05:52 PM   #6
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Check out this thread for replacing the oil filter housing gasket.

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=659100

Did this recently on my X3 and have the gasket to repeat on my 330. Simple enough except for removing the alternator. I could not figure out how to get it out until I found a YouTube video showing how to use a crowbar to ease it out. Took 10 seconds to remove with that information. I'll try and find that link.

Pretty common leak, and everyone seems to have problems with the alternator. The nut on the alternator compresses a bit when the bolt is tightened which holds it firmly in place. You also need to force the bolt out a bit before replacing the alternator otherwise installation is also frustrating.

Other than that it's a simple fix. Be sure to get a couple of crush washers for the oil hose that goes from the back of the housing to the vanos. I recommend removing the hose from the back of the housing rather than the vanos because the only way to get a torque wrench on the vanos bolt is to remove the thermostat.
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Old 09-30-2012, 06:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by littlegti View Post
I could not figure out how to get it out until I found a YouTube video showing how to use a crowbar to ease it out. Took 10 seconds to remove with that information. I'll try and find that link.
Here is the YouTube link.

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Old 09-30-2012, 06:16 PM   #8
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Hey, Man!

First, you said you're not sure about PS fluid...check the level and condition while you're at it. Should be able to see a small screw at bottom of reservoir...should be up to the second fine line when cold.

Look under PS reservoir...could be gasket, or both hoses. If larger hose, trim off a bit and reclamp using screw clamp...same for bottom of that hose on pump.

Follow the PS system around too...but you won't find a source with all that mess...so try engine degreaser and get it cleaned up better.

Common leaks are ofhg...ccv...vcg. Sometimes vanos oil line...replace if doing ofhg. Sometimes an incorrect placement of the oil filter cap o-ring.

Monitor levels of fluids accurately...in a.m. on level ground...or at least the 'same' ground, so you can notice if you are losing anything.

Usually leaks aren't horrible things, you know...besides the embarrassment, of course, and you need to keep the level proper until you fix them.

Also, it usually is either oil or PS fluid, but with that mess, when you clean things up, be sure to look for cooling leaks too.

I don't know what you have or have not done, but those are the 'main' sites we seem to leak from that I know of.
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Old 10-01-2012, 09:19 AM   #9
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I think its the ofhg, after looking at everything. Need to find time for it.

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Old 10-01-2012, 10:37 AM   #10
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Another vote for oil filter housing gasket. I had similar leaks and after replacing that gasket I've been clean ever since. I believe that to be the greatest source of all the oil on the driver's side of the block leaking to the underside. I also replaced my CCV and all related hose around the same time and noticed some seeping on the hose draining from the CCV to the dipstick and oil residue on my driver's side motor mount. So it could be a combo, but start with OFHG, clean everything with degreaser, and monitor for further leaks.
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Old 10-01-2012, 11:36 AM   #11
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Since everyone is saying its the ofhg I know it's a cheap $4 fix but the time to do it is 4 hours. since your in that area what else can be replaced for the future? Any other cheap fixes? Just tired of removing and putting stuff back together.
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:21 AM   #12
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Since everyone is saying its the ofhg I know it's a cheap $4 fix but the time to do it is 4 hours. since your in that area what else can be replaced for the future? Any other cheap fixes? Just tired of removing and putting stuff back together.
not cheap but CCV & oil separator is much easier with this out of the way

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...ht=13541435627
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:43 PM   #13
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It's not really 4 hours. You only have to go under the car to loosen the power steering bracket, all else is up top. The Alternator takes some persuading to get loose.
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Old 10-12-2012, 08:46 PM   #14
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Note for future reference, to clean off that oil you will need at least two cans of brake parts cleaner. Make sure to have some goggles (I'm serious)

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