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Old 10-20-2016, 08:43 PM   #1
lingon300k
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REDUCE OIL CONSUMPTION - "02Pilot mod" DIY

• Everything I've written here is to provide information. Anything you do to your car is your own decision. Whatever you do is your own fault. Proceed at your own risk. •

•Updated 10.28.16•

I've been saying I'm going to do this for quite a bit, and now I've finally gotten around to it.

That a lot of 325 and 330 engines burn oil is not news. But if you're unaware, or not fully aware of the situation, here's a very good video from E46Fanatics user 50sKid that unpacks and summarizes the issue quite nicely. Watch it before going further, as it explains everything you need to know:



( I actually want to make a point here to recommend 50sKid's YouTube channel in general. I've watched a bunch of his videos and they're some of the best, most informative mechanical/car DIYs I've ever seen, and certainly the best I've seen for the E46. If you have any concerns or want to know how to do any work on your E46 or are just curious in general, take a look at his page: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCml...Z38Q5_sUnUXrZw )

If your engine is losing oil, and you don't have any leaks, and your gaskets and maintenance are all up to par, then this modification, commonly referred to as the "02Pilot" mod, named after the user who created it, might be the answer to your problems. An oil catch can (OCC) is another solution that works quite nicely and follows the same principle--increased crankcase vacuum. If you want to delete the CCV entirely, the OCC is actually a better option. The 02Pilot mod is a good option, in my opinion, because it's very simple and cheap. There are no drawbacks to the 02Pilot mod that I know of, but the OCC has a few--you have to drain it, it could freeze in the winter, etc.

Before I did this, my engine was consuming roughly 1 quart per 900 miles. After I did this, the oil light didn't come on for 2,500 miles.


• User 02Pilot, on Bimmerforums, came up with this. Here's the original post from 2012: http://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/sh...8#post23714558 •



When I did this, it was secondary to the cleaning of the IAC and throttle body. I have not yet replaced the CCV, which I now intend to do. I wanted to test this out before I replaced the CCV, because if it didn't work, I would have gone with the oil catch can.

I'll stop pontificating and get to the DIY now.

------------------------------

• READ THROUGH THIS ENTIRE DIY BEFORE YOU TOUCH ANYTHING ON YOUR CAR. THEN READ IT AGAIN. MAKE SURE YOU ARE AWARE OF THE SITUATION AND HAVE ALL NECESSARY PARTS. IF YOU ARE AT ALL UNSURE OF YOUR ABILITY TO DO THIS WORK, OR ANYTHING LIKE IT, TAKE YOUR CAR TO A MECHANIC. •

I HIGHLY recommend that you clean the IAC and throttle body when you do this. The beginning procedure is exactly the same. If your throttle body and IAC haven't been cleaned, and your upper and lower intake boots are original, I recommend that you order new upper and lower intake boots in addition to a new throttle body gasket. Because I ran out of throttle body cleaner while cleaning the throttle body, I used regular Seafoam in the IAC when I cleaned it, followed by a bit of PB blaster. Throttle body cleaner is probably preferable for both the IAC and the throttle body.

Things to figure out before starting this:

- What ports are in use on your intake manifold? This will decide what parts you'll buy.

- Are you going to clean the IAC and throttle body? It would be stupid not to clean them. Buy throttle body cleaner and do it. Either way, you'll need a new throttle body gasket.

- Are you going to replace the CCV system? There's a lot more to be done in that case, so just use this as a guide for running a vacuum line to from the intake to the new CCV unit.
Take a look at these links for more info about replacing the CCV:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=417819
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...+oil+separator
http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...123&highlight=

Even though I generally don't like video based DIYs, this is the single best explanation/DIY for replacing the CCV that I've been able to find:



- Does your DISA need to be repaired or does it need a new o-ring? If so, you'll need a DISA repair kit or a new o-ring. The repair kits all seem to include a new o-ring.

- Do you have enough experience to do with sort of thing? If so, keep reading. If not, use the information included here to help you when you talk to your mechanic.

If both smaller ports are in use on the back of your intake manifold-meaning you have a car with an exhaust flap-you have to use the larger 7mm port. If you do this, you will need to either use a 7mm ID hose with a reducer, or the special Mercedes part that I used. DO NOT USE A VACUUM T on the hose going to the exhaust flap. I did that the first time and it would often take the car up to a minute for the exhaust flap to close, sometimes leaving it rattling while the car idled right after start up. If you're cleaning the throttle body and IAC, make sure you have throttle body cleaner and a new throttle body gasket. If you're replacing the CCV, this DIY will not have enough info for you. It's still probably worth it for a clear explanation of what you do with the vacuum hose.

What ports are in use on the back of your intake manifold?

The vacuum ports are here on the intake manifold:



To figure out which ports are in use, remove the cabin filter and tray, then feel behind the intake manifold to find out. The DIY link to remove the cabin filter and tray is below in step 1, and the photos you'll need to understand what you're feeling back there are below in step 5. Also, if you have performed the "golf tee mod" on your car--by removing the vacuum hose at the exhaust flap and plugging it with a golf tee or something similar--you can use one of the smaller ports on the intake manifold, allowing you to only use 3.5mm vacuum hose: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...9&postcount=16

------------------------------

Parts:


(required) • Mercedes vacuum adapter • I went with this part because it perfectly angles in the direction you want the vacuum hose to go in, and is just cleaner overall, in my opinion. -- https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/mer...ter-1170780681 (You could, of course, us a 7mm ID hose with a reducer. I prefer the part I've linked to, so that's why it's here.)

(required) • Throttle body gasket • -- https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...et-13547504728 (You need a new gasket when you remove the throttle body which you will be doing here.)

(required) • Vacuum hose • I recommend getting two meters of this so that you have a bit extra to replace other hose while you're in there, such as the line to the exhaust vacuum canister. This is the best vacuum hose you can buy, in my opinion. It's covered in braided cloth, is thick, and made in Germany by CRP. Very heavy duty. FCP's description is WRONG-the hose is 3.5mm ID. I need to email them about this. -- https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bra...m-od-x-20mm-id

(required) • Vacuum connector • I'm linking to Amazon here, but you can buy this little Dorman/HELP! brand assortment from AutoZone, Advanced, NAPA, etc, for ~$4 -- https://www.amazon.com/Dorman-Help-4.../dp/B000COB8I2 (You want the 1/8" connector from this kit. For this part, if you can get it elsewhere, you need something between 1/8" and 3/16", or 3mm to 3.5mm.)

------------------------------

(optional) • Upper intake boot • https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...ot-13541705209

(optional) • Lower intake boot • https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...ot-13541435627

(optional) • Throttle body cleaner • https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/crc...ner-12oz-05078

(optional) • DISA repair kit. • https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...chsmart-f66003

(optional) • OEM CCV kit • https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...m54-uro-m54pcv

(optional) • DISA o-ring • https://www.germanautosolutions.com/...sa_o_rings.php • And it looks like you can also use an o-ring for a Ford, which can be purchased at many local auto parts store-- http://www.zhpmafia.com/forums/showt...514#post249514 The Fel-Pro o-ring is too big and DOES NOT WORK for the M54 DISA.


------------------------------

The procedure:


• Step 1 •

Edited 10.28.16: It is possible to access the port on the CCV unit without removing the throttle body. As you can see in the second note below, it was mentioned to me by a few people. I checked myself yesterday, and noticed that, if you detach and move the electrical distribution box, you can access the CCV without removing the throttle body. You have to detach that box anyway, to remove the throttle body. This is probably why I thought it necessary to remove the throttle body as well. I wasn't working in that area, so I can't tell, exactly, if the lower intake boot needs to be removed to detach the electrical box. Either way, I still recommend that you remove and clean the throttle body and IAC. The DIY I linked to still explains all steps involved here in step 1. The hardest part is removing and then replacing that lower intake boot--the throttle body is easy. If you're doing any of this, and as far as you know it hasn't been done, or hasn't been done recently, just remove and clean the throttle body and IAC.
Before you go forward and begin, you should know that reinstalling the hose clamps on the lower intake boot is, by far, the most difficult part of this. I didn't even use the same hose clamps when I reinstalled the lower intake boot, opting to go with a keyed hose clamp. They look like this -- https://d2pbmlo3fglvvr.cloudfront.ne..._J6-0fo5oy.JPG Removing the hose clamps on the lower intake boot is quite difficult, but putting them back is even harder. Especially if you're installing a new boot that hasn't conformed to the clamp. If you're now aware of the difficulty associated with this, you can perform all of step 1, which includes the removal of the lower intake boot. (Again, I am not responsible for you damaging your car, or you taking your car apart and not being able to put it back together. Proceed at your own risk.)
*Note: It might be possible to access the CCV from under the car. I cannot confirm this. It's definitely not possible on the xi. If you've checked and believe you're able to access the CCV from underneath your car, you might be able to get away with only removing the belly pans and the cabin filter/tray:

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...8&postcount=24

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...3&postcount=30

http://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/sh...5#post28385355
Remove the cabin filter and tray, the airbox and MAF, the upper intake boot, the DISA, the plastic panel on by the driver's side strut tower, the lower intake boot, the IAC, and the throttle body.

*Note: Some people are reporting that they were able to access the CCV without removing the throttle body. While this might be possible--I don't know, it was too tight when I did it--I still think you should remove and clean the throttle body while you're in the area, unless it was cleaned recently. It's quite easy to remove the throttle body, but very difficult to remove the lower intake boot. It might be worth it, if you have a new lower intake boot and a clean throttle body, to access the CCV without removing them--if you're able to:

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...0&postcount=28

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...2&postcount=23


Follow this very good DIY to perform step 1: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=615503

As you start to get the intake and DISA removed, you'll notice the CCV here:



Keep going until you have the throttle body off.
• Step 2 •
Remove the cap from this capped port on the CCV:



You should be able to pull it off with your fingers, but you can CAREFULLY use pliers if you need to. If you break the plastic nipple on the CCV, you'll need to buy a new CCV.
• Step 3 •
Take your vacuum hose, attach it temporarily to the CCV, and route it to the port on the intake manifold you intend to use so that you have enough hose without much slack, but not so that it will by pulling on either the intake manifold or the CCV connection. You want it loose, but not hanging out of place. I ran it under the throttle body. Unfortunately, the pictures of the hose routing were blurry when I uploaded them. I'll take more pictures when I go back in to replace the CCV. The exhaust is on the other side of the engine, so you can't do to much to mess this up. Just make sure it won't get pinched when you reassemble, and it isn't too long. Once you have the hose routed the way you want, knowing you have enough length, cut off the excess with sharp diagonal cutters.
• Step 4 •
Pull the hose off the CCV so you have space to work and you know you're not tugging the hose off of it, and attach the male-male connector between the hose and the Mercedes part I recommended. Your vacuum hose is now ready to be attached to the CCV and the intake manifold. (You might want to use a small drill bit-NO DRILL, USE YOUR FINGERS-to clean out any burrs or irregularities in the inside of this male-male vacuum connection.)
• Step 5 •
This part is difficult/annoying because you won't be able to see anything. Everything will be done by feel.

In this photo link-not my photo-you can clearly see the nipples on the intake manifold. #2 is the larger 7mm port, and #1 is the smaller port that might be capped and available to use:

http://imgur.com/GpQiol1

If the smaller one is in use, you will need to go with the larger port. In this photo-this one is mine-you can see the Mercedes part (1 in the photo) attached to the larger port. Part 2 is the male-male vacuum connector:



Remove the nipple from the port you plan to use. This might be difficult. If you can't get it off with your fingers, use needle nose pliers to CAREFULLY pull off the vacuum cap without breaking the plastic nipple. Don't be an idiot. Do this carefully. You don't want to replace your intake manifold.
• Step 6 •
Attach the hose to the CCV, route it the way you mocked it up in step 3, and attach the Mercedes part to the 7mm port on the intake manifold. You've now completed the "02Pilot mod!"
• Step 7 •
Reassemble everything in the reverse of how you took it apart. Be careful not to kink or damage the new vacuum hose running from the CCV to the intake manifold.
(Please feel free to comment or send to me a PM about any errors, typos or incorrect statements in this DIY. Thanks for reading!)

Last edited by lingon300k; 11-22-2016 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:12 AM   #2
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Very nice write up.
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:24 AM   #3
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Awesome thread man
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Old 10-21-2016, 09:34 AM   #4
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Always great to see a detailed DIY, especially in more novel areas. Nicely done, lingon.
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Old 10-21-2016, 10:58 AM   #5
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Great write up. Now just to clarify when you say you drove 2500 miles thus far on this mod without the oil light, what was your driving habits like? Sometimes people will drive how they want the mod to react (like slower, lower rpms, lower speeds than normal) and thus affect the results.

I wonder what the pressure readings would read in terms of vacuum under different loads compared to stock? Like when does this mod make the biggest difference (under partial throttle, full throttle) idling, driving on the highway at a constant speed, or accelerating?

I wonder what would happen to those who say their cars burn no oil if they did this mod?

What if those who burn oil, did this mod, and got improved results went back to stock and did a piston ring job instead--would they get the same or better results? In other words, is this a band-aid for worn piston rings? (If it is and it provides good results across the board, why not? Sounds good to me) Trying to understand the oil mystery on some BMWs.

Some cars burn oil, some burn none.

Edit:
This does look cool--good idea from this guy: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=1066308


Last edited by Mango; 10-21-2016 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 10-21-2016, 01:24 PM   #6
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Awesome thread man
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knight View Post
Always great to see a detailed DIY, especially in more novel areas. Nicely done, lingon.
Thanks, guys!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mango View Post
Great write up. Now just to clarify when you say you drove 2500 miles thus far on this mod without the oil light, what was your driving habits like? Sometimes people will drive how they want the mod to react (like slower, lower rpms, lower speeds than normal) and thus affect the results.

I wonder what the pressure readings would read in terms of vacuum under different loads compared to stock? Like when does this mod make the biggest difference (under partial throttle, full throttle) idling, driving on the highway at a constant speed, or accelerating?
Honestly, one of the biggest reasons I went with this over the OCC is the simplicity and cost because I was so skeptical of either of these methods working. When the oil level actually stayed up, and the light stayed off, it seemed like magic. I was going all over the place around the time I did this, so if anything, I drove the car harder. I didn't really believe it was going to work, so I didn't modify my driving habits at all. Mostly, it was a shot at helping the consumption problem while I was already in there to clean the throttle body and IAC valve.

02Pilot answered some of the questions you asked in the link toward the top of my write up. Specifically, he gave some vacuum readings, and talked about when he thinks it's working best.
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Old 10-21-2016, 01:37 PM   #7
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Btw, I will try this mod. My car burns a quart every 3k or so (I forget) so I hope it will help with that consumption .
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Old 10-21-2016, 01:38 PM   #8
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I'm liking this aluminum valve cover idea. Is it workable with a catch can? A metal reinforced VCG coupled with a Viton OFHG from BavAuto would be great countermeasures to the accelerated wear from the extra vacuum generated by a catch can.
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Old 10-21-2016, 02:17 PM   #9
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I wonder what the pressure readings would read in terms of vacuum under different loads compared to stock? Like when does this mod make the biggest difference (under partial throttle, full throttle) idling, driving on the highway at a constant speed, or accelerating?
I only tested crankcase vacuum at idle. I got 7 inches of mercury with the O2Pilot mod. Before I had about 1/2 an inch. That's quite an increase but not near the 20 inches some get with the Catch can mod.
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Old 10-21-2016, 02:36 PM   #10
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It looks like the baffling in the M56 cover leaves nothing for a catch can to catch. Any oil that is pulled into the large baffle drops back into the engine and never reaches the second smaller baffle where the vacuum is applied. The M56 cover mod seem costly but probably the most effective mod available in my humble opinion. My oil consumption problem started all at once and stopped after I replaced the entire CCV system. I suspected it had to be something with the CCV and as it is I was right. From the beginning my 01/02 build 330i never used any oil until a vcg change. After the vcg change it was using 1 liter per 800 miles. Changed the CCV and it's back to it's old self. After 2500 miles it hasn't used a drop. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones?

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Old 10-21-2016, 02:44 PM   #11
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I only tested crankcase vacuum at idle. I got 7 inches of mercury with the O2Pilot mod. Before I had about 1/2 an inch. That's quite an increase but not near the 20 inches some get with the Catch can mod.
Anyone know what the negative pressure should be with a new engine with all factory parts working properly?
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Old 10-21-2016, 03:07 PM   #12
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Anyone know what the negative pressure should be with a new engine with all factory parts working properly?
I believe it is supposed to be about 1/2 inch.
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Old 10-21-2016, 03:33 PM   #13
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Wouldn't the increased crank case pressure wear the cylinder walls more rapidly as the rings are being pushed more so to the cylinder walls than before?
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Old 10-21-2016, 03:35 PM   #14
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Wouldn't the increased crank case pressure wear the cylinder walls more rapidly as the rings are being pushed more so to the cylinder walls than before?
This makes sense in theory, but I'm not sure if the amount of vacuum we're talking about would have any effect in that sense. Especially on a modern engine with low tension rings.

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Old 10-21-2016, 04:22 PM   #15
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Is the smaller vacuum port on the back the back of the intake(#1 in the picture you linked to in step 5) used for the exhaust flap? If so could you just use it for this o2 pilot mod if the golf tee mod has been done? So in that case you end up with an unused hose running from where the exhaust flap is to the intake?
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Old 10-21-2016, 04:26 PM   #16
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Thanks for the question! I'm adding a link to this post to the main post at the top of the thread. (I've edited the main post too many times today. I'll add the link tomorrow.)

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Is the smaller vacuum port on the back the back of the intake(#1 in the picture you linked to in step 5) used for the exhaust flap? If so could you just use it for this o2 pilot mod if the golf tee mod has been done? So in that case you end up with an unused hose running from where the exhaust flap is to the intake?
Yes. If you've removed and blocked the hose at the rear of the car, allowing the flap to always stay open, that hose is no longer in use and can be used for the CCV.

I tried this before I did the "02Pilot mod" to see if I would like the sound, and I hated it. It only added an obnoxious drone.

But if you've done the "golf tee mod," you definitely can use that port as it's no longer in use.

--------------------

• To be clear, for anyone reading this, we're talking about #1 in this photo: http://imgur.com/GpQiol1

• This is the "golf tee mod":


Last edited by lingon300k; 12-04-2016 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 10-21-2016, 04:27 PM   #17
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First off, lingon, excellent write-up. I wasn't expecting something so detailed when you said you were making a DIY. Additionally, thanks for your help and links the other day.

A few things worth mentioning in my experience with this so far (waiting for parts to ship):

1. It's not entirely necessary that you remove the throttle body when you go to do this job. While you're down there, of course, as you mentioned, it's wise to go ahead and clean it if it hasn't been cleaned. In my case, I was able to fit my hand by the CCV vacuum port and remove it, and put on the new hose. Kind of a tight fit, but I don't have small hands and it worked out fine. This time around, I ordered a TB gasket (Victor-Reinz from FCP) since I didn't replace that last time I cleaned my ICV and TB.

2. The CRP hose on FCP is great - especially if you're already ordering other parts, go ahead and add it to your order. However, if you're impatient like me, or in a cinch, you can go to your local auto parts store and pick up a 5/32" hose that fits equally as well. I do believe the metric for 5/32" is roughly ~3.9mm. Not too big of a difference in size, but again, I would opt for the 3.5 if it was viable for me.

3. Just thought it would be worth mentioning as well that an excellent alternative for throttle body cleaner is any fuel system cleaner. Particularly, I've used Lucas Fuel System Cleaner on the TB before and it cleaned it really well. Apparently lubricates the bushings on the valve of the TB as well. That being said, carburetor cleaner works well on the ICV too. Not that throttle body cleaner is anymore expensive than those two cleaners, but if you already have those then you can save yourself a few bucks.

I'll post back with any other notes I take from my install, and updates on my oil consumption. Currently, without the mod, I'm burning about a quart of oil every ~500 miles. Mobil 1 0W-40, if anyone's curious.

P.S - From the information I've gathered reading a majority of 02Pilot's original thread, the added crankcase vacuum is almost negligible. Especially in the context of cylinder wear.
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[BMW Motors] Advertising has somehow convinced people that they're different. That they're made by magical Dachshunds who only eat special bratwursts made by virgins in an undisclosed magical spot inside of the black forest that can only be accessed via a special hydrogen powered BMW helicopter.

Last edited by hodgkinsc330ci; 10-21-2016 at 04:28 PM.
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Old 10-21-2016, 04:43 PM   #18
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Thanks for the question! I'm adding a link to this post to the main post at the top of the thread. (I've edited the main post too many times today. I'll add the link tomorrow.)



Yes. If you've removed and blocked the hose at the rear of the car, allowing the flap to always stay open, that hose is no longer in use and can be used for the CCV.

I tried this before I did the "02Pilot mod" to see if I would like the sound, and I hated it. It only added an obnoxious drone.

But if you've done the "golf tee mod," you definitely can use that port as it's no longer in use.

--------------------

• To be clear, for anyone reading this, we're talking about #1 in this photo: http://imgur.com/GpQiol1

•This is the "golf tee mod":
Huh, I was under the impression that disconnecting that hose (since it leads to a vacuum canister, and then to the exhaust flap?) would create a small vacuum leak. I have the golf tee mod done on my car already, so I guess I didn't have to use the big port after all.
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Originally Posted by lingon300k View Post
[BMW Motors] Advertising has somehow convinced people that they're different. That they're made by magical Dachshunds who only eat special bratwursts made by virgins in an undisclosed magical spot inside of the black forest that can only be accessed via a special hydrogen powered BMW helicopter.
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Old 10-21-2016, 07:39 PM   #19
CO_Steve
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Colorado
Posts: 89
My Ride: 2003 330xi
Guys,
Is there a version of the CCV that doesn't have the unused port? I have an 03 330xi and I replaced the CCV a couple of years ago. I have the cold weather version and everything is encased in a rubber foam insulator.
I cannot locate any unused ports on mine.

Thanks
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Old 10-21-2016, 08:09 PM   #20
Hovs13
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Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Toronto
Posts: 131
My Ride: E46 325ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by CO_Steve View Post
Guys,
Is there a version of the CCV that doesn't have the unused port? I have an 03 330xi and I replaced the CCV a couple of years ago. I have the cold weather version and everything is encased in a rubber foam insulator.
I cannot locate any unused ports on mine.

Thanks

The port is hidden under the insulation.
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