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Old 03-25-2020, 12:28 AM   #1
MarcusVM
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Oil-Pan Gasket Swap on 330 XI (need advice)

Hey!

Hope everyone is doing okay with COVID-19 outbreak.

Anyway,

I bought my 330xi about 1 month ago. I have been doing various repairs such as:
-CCV system
-Spark plugs
-Air ducts from intake box to manifold
-Rust work

The car was leaking from somewhere and I thought it was the oil pan gasket given that one of the bolts for the oil pan going into the block, is stripped. So I dove into getting to it this past weekend. It was quite the mission to do it with the AWD system but I got to the oil-pan! Let me know if any of you all are planning on doing this job and need help. I have found the best YouTube videos and guides for the xi.

So, I have a couple questions for everyone who has done this.

1. Do you think that the underside of my engine bay could be super dirty all the way to the top just from the oil pan gasket or do you also think that it is the oil filter housing gasket? (I tried to get some photos of it.)

2. What parts should I replace while I have everything off? Do I have to replace the sub-frame bolts? They are pretty expensive!

3. Does my oil pan look to dirty to you all? It has micro scratches on the inside, I do not even know how they got there. I tried scrubbing the inside of it, but its hard to get off.

4. Is the green liquid on my A/C compressor from my A/C compressor leaking? (Attached photos!)

Let me know what you all think! Thank you everyone!!

Link to old thread: https://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=1272197
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Last edited by MarcusVM; 03-25-2020 at 12:29 AM. Reason: Needed to add link to old thread
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Old 03-25-2020, 12:35 AM   #2
venceslau
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I, personally would not replace sub frame bolts.

Green fluid is most likely coolant, follow the path upwards.

Carefully inspect area under intake manifold behind oil filter housing. If you see oil in that area could be CCV as well but very likely going to be the filter housing gasket.

Good luck

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Old 03-25-2020, 01:30 PM   #3
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The front bolts on my car were a mess- and this subframe hadn't been off before. So I replaced the front ones. It's as if the factory ran them home without aligning the posts exactly right. But generically, no, they are reusable.

If the OFHG is more than a week old, replace it. (I'm kidding, but only slightly. It takes less than an hour, and after doing the oil pan, you're a pro)

Look carefully at the front main seal. It's not super hard to get to (you can lower the engine with the subframe off) and mine was leaking like crazy.
In fact, I'd just do it while you're there- it's $7. Corteco/ Elring, not Reinz is my prejudice.

The pan shows a lot of evidence of aluminum shrinkage on mine, too. It's just a byproduct of casting large hunks of aluminum into interesting shape.

Don't forget those o- rings between the diff and pan, and extension housing and pan.

t
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Old 03-25-2020, 02:09 PM   #4
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Hard to tell, but the green goo on the A/C compressor just might be tracer dye?

Want the inside and outside of the oil pan to be like new?
Buy a bottle of P21S Total Auto Wash. Get one of those $1.99 bristle brushes from H Depot (yeah I know...), clean all the oil off with degreaser.

Spray the inside of the pan with the P21S (Blows simple green into the weeds) liberally and swirl around with the brush. Rinse in HOT water, repeat.

It will even remove most of the brown patina!

Oil does NOT travel up. Likely your pan gasket was "crying" but if it's as dirty as you say, you likely have another leak.

https://www.amazon.com/P21S-13001B-A...s%2C149&sr=8-1

We go through 4 large jugs a year. We clean engine bays and all the aluminum parts during engine rebuilds. Makes S14 cam boxes look brand new.
Likely the small bottle will suit your needs. It's paint safe also.
It's also sold as a motorcycle cleaner (rebranded) as HondaBrite.
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Old 03-25-2020, 11:51 PM   #5
MarcusVM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by venceslau View Post
I, personally would not replace sub frame bolts.

Green fluid is most likely coolant, follow the path upwards.

Carefully inspect area under intake manifold behind oil filter housing. If you see oil in that area could be CCV as well but very likely going to be the filter housing gasket.

Good luck

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cool, im going to replace the oil filter housing gasket, thanks for the help!
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Old 03-25-2020, 11:53 PM   #6
MarcusVM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobyB View Post
The front bolts on my car were a mess- and this subframe hadn't been off before. So I replaced the front ones. It's as if the factory ran them home without aligning the posts exactly right. But generically, no, they are reusable.

If the OFHG is more than a week old, replace it. (I'm kidding, but only slightly. It takes less than an hour, and after doing the oil pan, you're a pro)

Look carefully at the front main seal. It's not super hard to get to (you can lower the engine with the subframe off) and mine was leaking like crazy.
In fact, I'd just do it while you're there- it's $7. Corteco/ Elring, not Reinz is my prejudice.

The pan shows a lot of evidence of aluminum shrinkage on mine, too. It's just a byproduct of casting large hunks of aluminum into interesting shape.

Don't forget those o- rings between the diff and pan, and extension housing and pan.

t
Hi,

So I decided to replace as many gaskets as I can. I will be doing oil filter housing and the one you said too. Is that the rear main seal or something else. Can you link me to a DIY? Also what was everything you decided to replace? Thank you so much for the help! I do really appreciate it!

-Marcus
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Old 03-25-2020, 11:54 PM   #7
MarcusVM
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Model: 330xi
Transmission: 5 Speed Manual
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrMCar View Post
Hard to tell, but the green goo on the A/C compressor just might be tracer dye?

Want the inside and outside of the oil pan to be like new?
Buy a bottle of P21S Total Auto Wash. Get one of those $1.99 bristle brushes from H Depot (yeah I know...), clean all the oil off with degreaser.

Spray the inside of the pan with the P21S (Blows simple green into the weeds) liberally and swirl around with the brush. Rinse in HOT water, repeat.

It will even remove most of the brown patina!

Oil does NOT travel up. Likely your pan gasket was "crying" but if it's as dirty as you say, you likely have another leak.

https://www.amazon.com/P21S-13001B-A...s%2C149&sr=8-1

We go through 4 large jugs a year. We clean engine bays and all the aluminum parts during engine rebuilds. Makes S14 cam boxes look brand new.
Likely the small bottle will suit your needs. It's paint safe also.
It's also sold as a motorcycle cleaner (rebranded) as HondaBrite.
Awesome, Ill check it out, thank you!
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Old 03-26-2020, 12:09 AM   #8
venceslau
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One important tip, since you're replacing oil filter housing gasket.

Avoid using filters made in China as they have a tendency to restrict oil flow which causes increased pressures leading to leaks.

Use MANN oil filters ONLY if you want to avoid this problem in the future.

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Old 03-26-2020, 08:41 AM   #9
MrMCar
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I second the above and will suggest one step further, since you have the pan off.

When assembling have the filter/cap ready to go. After pouring 6 L of oil into the crankcase, slowly pour 1/2L into the filter housing, wait.
Then pour the last 1/2L in and SLOWLY insert the filter/cap. The dry filter will soak up most of the oil. When safe to do so (not letting can get dry) screw filter down.

Battery fully charged and spark plugs removed, pull out the fuel pump fuse!
Crank the engine for at least 30 seconds so that oil can be picked up by the pump and get distributed throughout the dry (ish) engine.

Reinstall plugs/coils and install the fuel pump fuse.
The idea is not to have the engine run for 10 seconds @ idle with little/no oil.
Idle = ~650 RPM. Starter speed = ~150-200 RPM.
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Old 03-26-2020, 10:55 AM   #10
TobyB
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FRONT main seal.

The hard part is getting that big nut off, and a seal puller really helps getting the seal itself out.

Hit the Google- I think 50's kid describes it in, maybe, his front cover gasket video? Timing chain?

I had the engine out and the trans off for a clutch, so it was really just a long bar to get the bolt out of the front of the crank.

And I do what Don describes- I fill the housing as best I can (without making too much of a mess) to keep the car from running 'dry'
any longer than it has to.

t
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