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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 11-20-2008, 10:26 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 33,142
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.

Remove the micro-filter, it is just sitting there.

Undo the 4 gold torx bolt and 4 plastic wire harness clips. The torx bots use a T30 torx bit.

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.

With micro-filter and housing removed.

Removing Cosmetic Engine Covers:

Pry out the bolt/nut covers using a flat head screwdriver.

Remove the oil cap and undo the two 10mm bolts and two 10mm nuts and remove the cosmetic engine covers.

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.

Remove the 12 10mm bolts holding down the ignition coils. Then just pull each coil out and set them aside.

Undo the small brown grounding wire and move the ignition wiring harness over to the side and out of the way.

Engine with coils removed and ignition wiring out of the way.

Removing Wiring Attached to Valve Cover:

Remove the wires and tubes from the metal clips.

Remove the two 8mm bolts and grounding straps.

Removing Crankcase Vent Tube:

Squeeze the top and bottom of the crankcase vent tube and pull off the valve cover.

Removing the Valve Cover:

Remove all 15 nuts along with washer and seal.

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

No sludge, so I'm happy.

This is where my leak was.

Happy looking camshaft lobes. Not bad after 74,000 miles.

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.

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