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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 02-14-2010, 07:30 AM   #1
ferngreen 325xi
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vanos seals.

Vehicle, 2001 325 XI wagon,131,00 miles, auto transmission. I am going to change out the valve cover gasket because it's weeping onto the exhaust and wondered if I should do the Vanos seals while I have it apart. I do not have any symptoms described by others of the site but while I have apart should I just bite the bullet and do them.


Also, can someone please include a DIY if possible. Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-14-2010, 07:57 AM   #2
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Yes do them. DIY is in beisan's website
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:02 AM   #3
ferngreen 325xi
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Thanks Paraklas, I just placed the order for the Vanos kit and printed the install instructions.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:23 AM   #4
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TIP: you're probably going to read the instructions too fast and overlook one simple thing. It's not highlighted on the instructions, so I'm gonna tell you now that the piston mounting bolts(under the orange rubber caps) are reverse threaded. I was careless not to read the instructions thoroughly when I was replacing mine and broke the bolts. They weren't hard to break either.
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Old 02-14-2010, 10:02 AM   #5
ferngreen 325xi
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Thanks for the heads up.

Last edited by ferngreen 325xi; 02-14-2010 at 10:15 AM.
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Old 02-14-2010, 10:02 AM   #6
ferngreen 325xi
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Thanks for the heads up.

Last edited by ferngreen 325xi; 02-14-2010 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 02-14-2010, 10:11 AM   #7
ferngreen 325xi
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Thanks for the heads up.
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Old 02-19-2010, 10:57 AM   #8
ferngreen 325xi
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Just completed the Vanos seal and vale cover gasket job and did not break anything. It took me about 3.5 hours and it was a very straight forward and easy job. The old seals, which I am assuming were original were hard, flat and when disassembled, the Vanos piston fell right out. Learning from others misfortunes, once off the engine I took the Vanos unit apart on my work bench, so if anything dropped it would fall inches not feet. There again even with 130,500 miles, I did not seam to have any problems as described by other BMW owners.
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Old 02-20-2010, 08:11 AM   #9
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did you notice any increase in performance, or a change at all? I am in the same boat, going to do the valve cover gasket but have no symptoms of vanos failure.
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Old 02-20-2010, 08:26 AM   #10
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He won't really notice for a couple hundred miles until they "break in".

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Originally Posted by beef1020 View Post
did you notice any increase in performance, or a change at all? I am in the same boat, going to do the valve cover gasket but have no symptoms of vanos failure.
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Old 02-20-2010, 10:52 AM   #11
ferngreen 325xi
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Car starts and idles fine. After driving for a while, the car does feel stronger in the low end. If you are doing the valve cover gasket, you might as well do the vanos seals. I am also trying the German Castrol 0w30 after using Amsoil for roughly twenty plus years. I will update progress as the miles build up.
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