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M54 6-Cylinder Engine Valve Cover Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

M54 6-Cylinder Engine Valve Cover Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$200

Talent:

****

Tools:

Set of sockets, wrenches, screwdrivers

Applicable Models:

BMW 525i Sedan (2004-05)
BMW 530i Sedan (2004-05)

Parts Required:

Valve cover gasket, valve cover fastener sealing grommets, RTV (silicone sealant)

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine.

Performance Gain:

Repair oil leaks

Complementary Modification:

Change engine oil and filter. Change spark plugs

The valve cover gasket is one of the most common places to have an oil leak on your BMW E60. If you have an oil leak down the exhaust side or front of your engine, start at the top and replace the valve cover gasket. When the valve cover gasket leaks, it can create quite a mess and seem much worse than it is.

On M54 6-cylinder models: Engine oil can also leak into the spark plug holes in the cylinder head, contaminating the ignition coil boot. You will have to repair the oil leak and replace ignition coil boot (or ignition coil). Inspect valve cover once gasket has been removed. They can crack from heat or impacts. I sometimes find cracks around the grommet sealing holes. If you find a crack, you will have to replace valve cover.

Remove engine covers and microfilter housing. See our tech article on engine cover removing.

Working at the left strut tower, remove the two Phillips head screws, then remove the plastic expanding anchor by pulling them straight up (green arrows).
Figure 1

Working at the left strut tower, remove the two Phillips head screws, then remove the plastic expanding anchor by pulling them straight up (green arrows). Unclip the plastic cover (yellow arrow) from the strut tower.

Remove strut tower plastic cover from the vehicle.
Figure 2

Remove strut tower plastic cover from the vehicle. Remove the right side plastic cover.

Working at the left strut tower, remove the T45 Torx fastener (red arrow).
Figure 3

Working at the left strut tower, remove the T45 Torx fastener (red arrow). Then move to the right strut tower and remove the same fastener.

Working at the center of the wiper cowl above the valve cover, remove the two T45 Torx fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 4

Working at the center of the wiper cowl above the valve cover, remove the two T45 Torx fasteners (red arrows).

Unclips the battery cable from the strut tower brace by opening the mount (red arrow), then remove the strut tower brace from the vehicle.
Figure 5

Unclips the battery cable from the strut tower brace by opening the mount (red arrow), then remove the strut tower brace from the vehicle.

Open all six ignition coil electrical connectors by rotating connector (red arrow) up 90°.
Figure 6

Open all six ignition coil electrical connectors by rotating connector (red arrow) up 90°. Then remove the electrical connectors from the ignition coils. Remove the ignition coils from cylinder head by pulling straight up. If coil resists, twist when pulling up to break free from spark plug. The ignition coil rubber boot can become stuck to the spark plug over time. Do this for all six ignition coils.

Working at the center of the valve cover, remove the 8mm and ground strap buts (red arrows) from valve cover fastener.
Figure 7

Working at the center of the valve cover, remove the 8mm and ground strap buts (red arrows) from valve cover fastener. Then remove the grounds from the studs (inset).

Next, remove the ignition coil wiring harness housing from the valve cover.
Figure 8

Next, remove the ignition coil wiring harness housing from the valve cover. Release the two clips (red arrows) while lifting up. Once detached, lay aside.

Next, pull the oxygen sensor electrical connectors out of holder and disconnect by pressing release tab and pulling apart (red arrows).
Figure 9

Next, pull the oxygen sensor electrical connectors out of holder and disconnect by pressing release tab and pulling apart (red arrows). Remove oxygen sensor wires from mounts near intake manifold.

Continue to remove the oxygen sensor wiring harness from the valve cover by detaching it at the rear (red arrow).
Figure 10

Continue to remove the oxygen sensor wiring harness from the valve cover by detaching it at the rear (red arrow).

Pull the oxygen sensor wires and mounting clips (red arrows) off the valve cover and lay aside.
Figure 11

Pull the oxygen sensor wires and mounting clips (red arrows) off the valve cover and lay aside.

Working at left front corner of cylinder head cover, disconnect crankcase vent hose by squeezing release tabs (red arrows) and pulling away from cylinder head cover.
Figure 12

Working at left front corner of cylinder head cover, disconnect crankcase vent hose by squeezing release tabs (red arrows) and pulling away from cylinder head cover.

Remove the fifteen 10mm valve cover fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 13

Remove the fifteen 10mm valve cover fasteners (green arrows).

Lift the valve cover off cylinder head.
Figure 14

Lift the valve cover off cylinder head. It should not be stuck to cylinder head, if it is stuck, check that you didn't miss a fastener.

Once the valve cover has been removed, pull valve cover gasket out of valve cover.
Figure 15

Once the valve cover has been removed, pull valve cover gasket out of valve cover. Then thoroughly clean valve cover sealing groove. Remove sealing grommets from valve cover fasteners and replace with new. Install new valve cover gasket into sealing groove in valve cover.

Then apply a small amount of RTV to seams at VANOS actuator (green arrows) and cylinder head.
Figure 16

Then apply a small amount of RTV to seams at VANOS actuator (green arrows) and cylinder head. Place valve cover on cylinder head and install all fasteners finger tight. Then tighten fasteners in a cross-cross pattern. Reinstall ignition coils and install and route wiring harness as previously installed. Start and idle engine, inspect valve cover and surrounding areas for oil leaks. Once complete, reinstall engine covers.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Dryfit Comments: Hi, Pictures are still incorrect and some parts are missing, on the pic. like where to apply RTV sealant.
January 19, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: We are working on updating the article. It is in the queue.

RTV goes on the points of the camshaft half circles and on the joining area of the cylinder head and timing cover area. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Denis Comments: Hi Nick, it seems the pictures are not correct. Any time frame this will be corrected.
Thanks
January 11, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should have been fixed by now. I will check in again. Might have slipped through the cracks. I apologize. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
AM Comments: Has this been corrected? It seems like there are a lot of photos missing....
August 18, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Not yet. it is in the queue for being updated. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
brewmasterflash Comments: Have these images been corrected? Hoping to follow this and the 6 Cylinder Crankcase Breather Valve Replacement guide soon. Thanks!
June 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Does not look like it. I will touch base again with our web team. Thanks - Nick at Pelican Parts  
daglazbmw Comments: Do you have an option to see the process on a 2007 550i, it's an 8 cylinder and I don't know if the process changes with it being larger. any info would help thanks.
May 23, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: We don't currently have that tech article. If we get a chance to perform the procedure, we will be sure to document it.

I would grab a repair manual. It will have the procedure, special tools and torque specs.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Joel Comments: Any way that I could get the links to the last few pictures for this write-up? Thanks!
May 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The images look incorrect to me. I will have someone correct the links. Thanks for catching this. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
JP Comments: Also, you seem to skip removal of the plastic engine cover. I see you have another article on that, so it would be good instead of just skipping it, either insert that article or provide a link for continuity of the process.
April 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: We don't skip it, it is mentioned in the text before the images:

The ignition coil cover, the intake manifold cover and the oil filler cap all need to be removed in order to gain access to the valve cover. Remove the engine covers and microfilter housing. See our tech article on engine cover removing. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
JP Comments: Yeah, everything looks good up to Fig 5, then it's a matching game after that. If you get those sorted, this would be really useful.
April 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I passed the info on, they are working on it.

Thanks again. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Scarpoolla Comments: These pictures do not seem to match up with what is going on in the description.
March 17, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for catching that. Looks like the eggs got scrambled and descriptions are mismatched or missing. I will have the page fixed. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Mon 12/5/2016 02:41:56 AM