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Go Back   E46Fanatics > Tuning & Tech > Driveline, Engine & DME Tuning

Driveline, Engine & DME Tuning
Talk about driveline improvements, NA tuning and DME tuning your E46 BMW here. This includes diffs, intakes, exhausts, chips, software and OBD tuning.

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Old 12-28-2010, 04:14 PM   #1
F1004fun
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E46 M54 Oil cooler and S54 filter housing install

It's been a long time in the making but I got all the parts together for the oil cooler install and was at the shop till 2:00am getting this all done.

First is the S54 oil filter housing which bolts up the the M54 block with no problems and clears the intake manifold with ease. The first picture shows the housing and the P/S pump mounted.

The P/S pump can be as complicated as you make it. VAC Motorsports sells the spacers you need to make the pulley line up perfect. So the front two P/S pump mounting bolts wind up a little shorter but easy. For the rear bracket I have seen multiple bracket setups among the models so that is where it becomes "custom". I used another spacer that was ground at an angle and ran the long stock bolt all the way through the housing to the blind nut on the rear bracket.

I used the VAC Motorsports VANOS oil supply adapter banjo bolt that allows the stock VANOS hose and you don't have to drill and tap the S54 housing. These allows room for only one more fitting, you can use the tee fittings or what ever you want. I chose to mount only the oil pressure sensor and relocate the oil temp. sensor to the oil pan using the Turner Motorsports oil temp adapter #TEN 99 90 001

Now I will say that even this has it's cons in that the yellow waring light comes on the dash for low oil level. Well I able the work with the guys at AUTOLOGIC for an instrument cluster reflash that removes that option from the software, if your local shop has access to an AUTOLOGIC they might be able to do this for your car as well. So no yellow light and no oil level sender.

Next is the oil cooler. I used a Mocal 235mm 19 row with AN10 fittings. Using nut-certs I ran bolts down through the factory holes in the air intlet duct. Some careful trimming is required to the duct inlet to clear. Brackets will need to be rivited or TIG welded to the aluminum core support for the lower mounting, I don't have a TIG so I rivet....big rivets!

I chose the run the hoses around the radiator since I was removing the stock P/S cooler which you may have to do as well. I ground the plastic left side support bracket where the stock P/S cooler lines went and little bit of the front core support to allow room for the two cooler hoses.
I found the coolest little brackets for automotive plumbing by a company called "Made 4 you products" the can be used to separate and support the hoses and a comes with the bolt a little long to mount to a surface using a nut-cert or whatever. I installed one 6mm nut-cert in the frame to hold the lines where they go around the radiator. The plumbing I decided to go with is the 9100 Kevlar lined PTFE braided hose from Pegasus racing supply, and the main reason for this is due to a bend radius of 1-1/2", these allows the bend around the radiator without kinking.

The next big question is the power steering and I have to apologize that I don't have any pictures yet. But I did use a late E36 P/S cooler the mounts to the steering rack and relocated the P/S resevoir to the frame rail next to the heater valve, much like to E36 style. I am currently trying with and without check-valve banjo bolt and with and without return line restriction.
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Old 12-28-2010, 05:54 PM   #2
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Nice work!
do you think there'll be any noticeable effect removing the P/S cooler?
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Old 12-28-2010, 05:59 PM   #3
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Nice work!
do you think there'll be any noticeable effect removing the P/S cooler?
I still have a P/S cooler. I used the late E36 style P/S cooler that bolts to the steering rack. I even cut folded a small duct to direct air over the cooler, I'll have more pictures in a few days.
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Old 12-28-2010, 06:06 PM   #4
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I still have a P/S cooler. I used the late E36 style P/S cooler that bolts to the steering rack. I even cut folded a small duct to direct air over the cooler, I'll have more pictures in a few days.
Awesome. looking forward to the pics!
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:23 PM   #5
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Very nice work!

It's extremely refreshing to see someone blaze their own path and figure things out and then share it here.

Bravo!
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:46 PM   #6
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Not sure if it'll work with my intercooler but I like this mounting idea^
Is that where the Technik setup had it?
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:38 AM   #7
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I mounted the oil cooler up high to leave room for a front mounted heat exchanger or intercooler if I ever decide to "get boost". I don't know where Tecknic puts there oil cooler.
I have thought a lot about running the oil cooler lower with the lines on the top side to bleed out any air bubbles in the cooler. Every motor guy I talked to said in that theory works, but in reality that oil pump moves enough volume at high speeds to clear ANY air bubbles out.
Maybe Adam has some knowledge to drop on us regarding that subject.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:59 PM   #8
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Great job! You answered my main concerns. Now I just need my S54 housing to arrive. I do have a couple of questions...

Do you have a link to the p/s pump spacers?

I thought the p/s cooler was just a loop of metal piping. I don't see how it would interfere with the mounting of the oil cooler in that location.

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Old 12-29-2010, 10:02 PM   #9
F1004fun
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Great job! You answered my main concerns. Now I just need my S54 housing to arrive. I do have a couple of questions...

Do you have a link to the p/s pump spacers?

I thought the p/s cooler was just a loop of metal piping. I don't see how it would interfere with the mounting of the oil cooler in that location.
I don't have a link to the spacers but VAC sells them, I bought them at the same time as the AN10 adapters and banjo bolt.

The stock P/S cooler might not interfere with the oil cooler mounting itself but I wanted to route my oil cooler lines where the P/S cooler lines were. And most importantly when I re-located my P/S resevoir to the frame rail it became lower then the P/S cooler. I don't believe that would be a good idea, so I used the E36 P/S cooler mounted to the steering rack, to keep the resevoir the highest point.
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Old 12-29-2010, 11:13 PM   #10
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Thanks again. Last question, did you use a US spec S54 housing or a Euro Spec one? Or are they the same thing?
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Old 01-04-2011, 07:27 PM   #11
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Thanks again. Last question, did you use a US spec S54 housing or a Euro Spec one? Or are they the same thing?
Also wondering.

Finally someone got this to work! Another project for next Spring It looks great!

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Old 01-05-2011, 01:21 AM   #12
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Thanks again. Last question, did you use a US spec S54 housing or a Euro Spec one? Or are they the same thing?
I used the S54 housing, I have heard of people using the Euro E36 housing. I don't think there is much of a difference.
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Old 01-08-2011, 08:18 AM   #13
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Where did you move the PS reservior? I don't see it in the pics?
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:23 PM   #14
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very cool!

how much more oil are you running with the addition of the cooler?
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Old 01-08-2011, 10:44 PM   #15
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Very cool...didn't know about the S54 housing fitting the M54. Are you using the M3 oil filters now or are you can you use the M54 filters?

I have always hated the design of the M54 filters...all paper (Mann, OEM, or even Hengst) or all paper and plastic in the case of the Mahle filters, while the M3 ones have aluminum or some type of alloy metal on the tops and bottoms of the filters.
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Old 01-17-2011, 01:49 AM   #16
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To answer some questions:
I am running about 7-3/4 qts. of engine oil, and yes I am using the M3 oil filter OX187.
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Old 01-17-2011, 10:27 AM   #17
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Thanks for the info, nice clean install. Does anyone know if it is necessary to run a hydraulic belt tensioner with the S54 housing? I have an AA SC kit which requires you to run the spring type.
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Old 01-21-2011, 02:20 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by F1004fun View Post
I mounted the oil cooler up high to leave room for a front mounted heat exchanger or intercooler if I ever decide to "get boost". I don't know where Tecknic puts there oil cooler.
I have thought a lot about running the oil cooler lower with the lines on the top side to bleed out any air bubbles in the cooler. Every motor guy I talked to said in that theory works, but in reality that oil pump moves enough volume at high speeds to clear ANY air bubbles out.
Maybe Adam has some knowledge to drop on us regarding that subject.
Technik kit runs in the same place with lines running from the top to reduce pressure loss in longer lines. The original Technik OC kit was designed to accommodate the ASA SC, which draws the engine oil to lubricate. So natrually we need to minimize that pressure loss. Back then, Zolti and I tested lines by the 1/3 ft increments and might have gone through a dozen different EOCs.

This location is ok given its convenient mounting pts. One advice I would give is tilt the top of EOC forward a little for two reasons: 1. incoming air will be forced through the EOC fins thus 'moving' more heat against a slanted surface, 2. create a slightly larger exit volume between the ECO and the radiator.

Ideally though the EOC should be mounted where there is a better entry and exit flow. Mine has since been relocated to the wheel well area. But with the Technik ASA SC, that means the air filter has to be relocated else where.

And yes, the oil system is pressurized so that should pushed out any air trapped in there. At least for me, bottom mount is the absolute last resort.
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:08 AM   #19
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This location is ok given its convenient mounting pts. One advice I would give is tilt the top of EOC forward a little for two reasons: 1. incoming air will be forced through the EOC fins thus 'moving' more heat against a slanted surface, 2. create a slightly larger exit volume between the ECO and the radiator.

Ideally though the EOC should be mounted where there is a better entry and exit flow. Mine has since been relocated to the wheel well area. But with the Technik ASA SC, that means the air filter has to be relocated else where.
Thanks for even more great info in this thread!
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:24 PM   #20
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is it possible to use this? http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Bmw-E...item2eb362d4f6
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