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BMW E39 Muffler Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

BMW E39 Muffler Replacement

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

4 hours4 hrs

Tab:

$150

Talent:

*****

Tools:

13mm socket with ratchet, pry bar, possible hacksaw with metal cutting blades

Applicable Models:

BMW 525i Sedan/Wagon (2001-03)
BMW 528i Sedan/Wagon (1997-00)
BMW 530i Sedan (2001-03)
BMW 540i Sedan/Wagon (1997-03)

Parts Required:

Muffler, mounts and hangers

Hot Tip:

Wear eye protection while sawing original exhaust

Performance Gain:

Replaces noisy, damaged or upgrades muffler

Complementary Modification:

Muffler hangers and mounts

The BMW E39 exhaust is a sturdy structure. Large solid pipes can last a long time but a combination of condensation, both in the exhaust gas and from the outside, along with road salts can cause premature failure. A leaking exhaust is noisy and also can cause a failure of a state emissions inspection program. In this tech article we will go over all the steps to remove the resonator and muffler in a "Cat-Back" system.

To get adequate access to your exhaust you need to jack up and support your vehicle. See our tech article on jacking up and supporting your vehicle. Put it up as high as you safely can to give you more room under the car.

This photo illustrates under the middle of the car from the right side of an 8 cylinder E39.
Figure 1

This photo illustrates under the middle of the car from the right side of an 8 cylinder E39. Use a jack stand to support the front of the Â"Cat-BackÂ" system. Note, the silver sleeves (green arrows) you see in this picture may not be mounted on your car. You may just have the straight metal pipes of the original exhaust, but for the moment just support the front of the exhaust. Even if you have the 6 cylinder still support the heavy exhaust.

This photo illustrates the back of the car looking at the muffler.
Figure 2

This photo illustrates the back of the car looking at the muffler. Support the back muffler with a jack and a block of wood. This is for preparation when you remove the muffler mounts.

Working under the middle of the car again you may have these muffler sleeves if exhaust work has been done already or you may have a straight pipe.
Figure 3

Working under the middle of the car again you may have these muffler sleeves if exhaust work has been done already or you may have a straight pipe. If you have the muffler sleeves loosen the rear two clamping bolts (green arrows). You should not have to loosen the two front clamping bolts (yellow arrows) to remove the muffler.

If you have original straight pipe measure from a reference point like this weld at the beginning of where the two pipes come together (yellow arrow) to the front end of your new exhaust muffler.
Figure 4

If you have original straight pipe measure from a reference point like this weld at the beginning of where the two pipes come together (yellow arrow) to the front end of your new exhaust muffler. Then measure from the same reference point (yellow arrow) on your existing exhaust and mark the measurement on the front of the original pipe (green arrow). Cut across both pipes with a hacksaw. Wear eye protection because as you cut metal bits will be flying off.

This photo illustrates underneath the middle of a 6 cylinder model.
Figure 5

This photo illustrates underneath the middle of a 6 cylinder model. This car has the original exhaust so there are no existing breaks in the pipe. Somewhere in between the red arrows the exhaust has to be cut to match the length of the new exhaust that you are installing. Measure where your replacement cat-back system begins and match that measurement on the existing exhaust. Cut the existing exhaust at that point with a pipe cutter or hacksaw and use an exhaust sleeve to join them together.

This photo illustrates the back of the car looking up at the front end of the muffler.
Figure 6

This photo illustrates the back of the car looking up at the front end of the muffler. Remove the 13mm bolt (green arrow) and allow the jack to support the weight.

This photo illustrates the right side wheel well looking at the right side of the Â
Figure 7

This photo illustrates the right side wheel well looking at the right side of the Â"VÂ" shaped resonator. Remove the rubber exhaust hanger (green arrow) from the bottom pin so the rubber hanger stays connected to the car.

Lower the jack and allow the muffler to drop down in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 8

Lower the jack and allow the muffler to drop down in the direction of the blue arrow. Remove the front jack stand and slide the muffler out of the back of the car. This is a heavy, sturdy, unit so you may want to have a helper help you pick it up and move it.

If you had to saw your original exhaust you will need to install these muffler sleeves and tighten down on all four 17mm nuts to clamp down on the exhaust.
Figure 9

If you had to saw your original exhaust you will need to install these muffler sleeves and tighten down on all four 17mm nuts to clamp down on the exhaust. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Install exhaust sleeve between you old catalytic converter and your new exhaust system. Fit the hanger on the Â"VÂ" shaped resonator and jack up the rear muffler to install the fastener for the muffler mount. Start the car and check for exhaust leaks.

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Page last updated: Fri 12/9/2016 02:05:53 AM