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General E46 Forum
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:29 PM   #21
Alex323Ci
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well oil on top is often a sign of the valve cover gasket. it could also be if the plug is so loose it allows "blow by" in the plug area. were the plugs nice and tight/snug? with all that you say is in there on the plugs and coil packs that can certainly cause a misfire.
clean them and move them around with the good cylinders, clear codes first and see what comes up. i suspect there is more to this though. and coolant there is a strange one.
but you have found out alot today, good job.
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:34 PM   #22
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I'm thinking the coolant around the plug points to a head gasket ........Will pull the VCG tmrw and have a look around, but there shouldn't be coolant ANYWHERE in this system correct ? BTW plugs are/were nice and tight...........I imagine the oil in cylinder 1 would be a leaking VCG seal, but not the coolant.......

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Old 10-10-2012, 05:41 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus75 View Post
Ok, checked out plug 1 and 5 first as those were the misfires..........I noticed a decent amount of oil at the bottom of the coil shaft, on the top of the plug, before removing it, enough to be worrisome..........Cylinder 5, on the other hand, has about an inch of coolant in the coil shaft.........This plug I have not removed yet to examine...........Other plugs were dry, normal appearance.............So, head gasket ? Valve cover gasket ?
Sounds like your HG is letting go if there is coolant in the head. Otherwise, the coil pack gaskets could be old and cracked ... the E46 is now an old vehicle, with the newest 2006 models being 6 years old.
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Old 10-10-2012, 05:51 PM   #24
Chadrobb4
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While the coolant is an issue to sort out, this thread has helped me on multiple occasions when having misfires.

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=897616
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:15 PM   #25
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Yeah Alex..........Seeing coolant there sort of threw me for a loop as well, although I have to admit I'm not that mechanically inclined, but I'm learning...........So, the only way I can see it is coolant thru bad head gasket, into cylinder, and then the pressure must have forced it thru the valve cover gasket into the coil tube..........As I understand it that should be the ONLY way it would accumulate there correct ?????? Or am I missing something entirely ? Talk about a kick in the nuts !!! Chad, thanks for that link........I have scanned that thread a few times the past few days and you are right it is very helpful ! Halo, coil pack gaskets ? Are you referring to the (2) sets of gaskets that fit over the spark plug housings on the valve cover ? Still not sure how, even if that was the source of the leak, that coolant would end up there ? Should be only oil right ?
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Old 10-11-2012, 10:52 AM   #26
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Has anyone ever used Bar's Leak or some similar head gasket sealant and had success ? Not planning on keeping the car but maybe another 6-8 months and then trading it in..........From what I'm told IF it worked it might hold for a year or two at best.....Strange we havent had ANY oveheating issues ( that I'm aware of, this IS my wife's car ).............Anyway, I'm assuming there is NO OTHER WAY to have coolant get into this space other than head gasket failure, or someone pouring it in the space topside..........So, before I start either adding sealant OR tearing into this thing and trying to replace the HG myself, any other ideas ????
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Old 10-11-2012, 12:55 PM   #27
Alex323Ci
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next step is a compression test and/or cooling system pressure test before jumping in both feet. this will give better idea if it is the head gasket. pre that is to take out the dipstick and Look and Smell it. also check your coolant for any traces of oil in there. also how does exhaust look now, ie color moisture.

coolant would have to be pushed up in that cavity past the plug, AFAIK. or the water jacket of the head cracked to allow it to seep in. that would present much more obvious effects imho. (third is spilled on somehow). but coolant would certainly misfire that coil pack and plug there(probably short it). when you cleaned and switched coil packs with the good firing ones is it any better? have you pulled new codes and found the cylinders showing bad still the same or moved? is coolant still getting ontop of the plug?
I'm not convinced its the head gasket just yet, lets still hope for bad coil packs.
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Old 10-16-2012, 10:01 AM   #28
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Yep Alex, had a bad coil pack Cylinder 1..........Replaced it with a O'reilly's BREMI but will more than likely change them all out as well as the plugs after I do a little more research here........From what I can gather what I was assuming was coolant in the spark plug reservoir was more than likely rain water that maybe mixed with some oil residue and discolored it, giving it an appearance of anything other than .......well, rain water...........At any rate, I'm going to keep a close eye on it to make sure I don't have a cracked head...........Compression test checked out..........Anyway, cleared the codes, CEL is off and stayed off..............Thanks to those of you who chimed in !!!!!
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Old 10-17-2012, 03:04 PM   #29
Alex323Ci
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hey i'm glad it worked out and happy to help.
now if this forum continues down it's path of "replace it all" instead of inspect, assess, diagnose and fix. guess you'd have a HUGE bill and a new engine
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