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Engine Valley Pan and Coolant Pipes Removal
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Engine Valley Pan and Coolant Pipes Removal

Nick Czerula

Time:

10 hours10 hrs

Tab:

$200

Talent:

*****

Tools:

10mm socket w/ratchet, pick, torque wrench

Applicable Models:

BMW X5 (2000-06)

Parts Required:

Engine coolant, rear coolant manifold, coolant pipes

Hot Tip:

Drain coolant from block before removing parts

Performance Gain:

Repair leaking coolant manifold, pipes and valley pan

Complementary Modification:

Change intake manifold gaskets and knock sensors at the same time

The BMW cooling system on their 8-cylinder engine uses cooling pipes underneath the intake manifold to return coolant from the back of the block. This involves a manifold and two cooling pipes leading from the rear coolant manifold to the water pump. Below these coolant pipes is a coolant passage in the valley of the block. A valley pan covers this cooling passage. The valley pan can develop a leak. Coolant will fill the area under the intake manifold around the area of the valley pan.

There are two drain holes at the back of the valley area allowing coolant to drain in between the engine and transmission. If you see a coolant leak at the back of the engine suspect a leak from either the rear coolant manifold or the valley pan. You can replace the valley pan by removing the water pump and not removing the rear coolant manifold. See our technical article on water pump removal to start the process that way.

To perform these repairs you will need to remove the intake manifold to gain access to the components and fasteners that need to be removed. See our tech article on intake manifold removal and follow the following steps once the intake manifold is removed.

Remember that your car may have been serviced before and had parts replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve, as they grow older. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

Disconnect the negative (-) battery cable. See our tech article on battery connection notes.

Remove the engine covers. See our tech article on removing the engine covers.

Here we are looking at the V of the block with the intake manifold removed.
Figure 1

Here we are looking at the V of the block with the intake manifold removed. To access the valley pan you will need to remove the cooling pipes. You can remove either the water pump or the rear-cooling manifold to remove the cooling pipes. In this tech article we will show you how with the water pump removed. When replacing, you will need a valley pan and the plastic cover (red arrow). The cover usually breaks when you attempt to remove it from the valley pan. There are two drain holes (yellow arrow points to right side hole) at the back of the valley area allowing coolant to drain in between the engine and transmission. If you see a coolant leak at the back of the engine suspect a leak from either the rear coolant manifold or the valley pan. The green arrows point to areas where coolant usually pools.

First, we have to remove the intake air duct that runs from the throttle housing (yellow arrow) to the mass airflow sensor (green arrow).
Figure 2

First, we have to remove the intake air duct that runs from the throttle housing (yellow arrow) to the mass airflow sensor (green arrow).

Working at the fresh air intake, remove the four plastic rivets (green arrows).
Figure 3

Working at the fresh air intake, remove the four plastic rivets (green arrows). Use a pair of pliers (inset) to remove the center rivet. Once all center rivets have been removed, pull the duct up to detach it from the vehicle.

Then lift the duct up on the left side while detaching it from the duct (green arrow) on the right side.
Figure 4

Then lift the duct up on the left side while detaching it from the duct (green arrow) on the right side.

Working at the mass airflow sensor, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).
Figure 5

Working at the mass airflow sensor, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).

Working at the throttle housing duct, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).
Figure 6

Working at the throttle housing duct, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).

Next, you will have to rotate the throttle housing duct up toward the left side of the vehicle in the direction of the green arrow.
Figure 7

Next, you will have to rotate the throttle housing duct up toward the left side of the vehicle in the direction of the green arrow. This will detach it from the mass airflow sensor. Once it is detached from the mass airflow sensor, pull the duct off the throttle housing. There are two small hoses you have to disconnect in the following step. Be careful not to damage them during this step.

Working at the bottom of the intake air duct, detach the plastic line by squeezing the release collar (green arrows) while pulling the line off the duct.
Figure 8

Working at the bottom of the intake air duct, detach the plastic line by squeezing the release collar (green arrows) while pulling the line off the duct. Then pull the vacuum hose (yellow arrow) straight off the duct to remove it.

When removing the duct, be sure not to misplace the rubber duct seal (green arrow).
Figure 9

When removing the duct, be sure not to misplace the rubber duct seal (green arrow). The seal will either stay inside the duct or remain attached to the throttle housing.

Working at the throttle housing, disconnect the electrical connector by squeezing the plastic release tabs (on top and bottom of connector) and pulling it off in the direction of the green arrow.
Figure 10

Working at the throttle housing, disconnect the electrical connector by squeezing the plastic release tabs (on top and bottom of connector) and pulling it off in the direction of the green arrow. Remove the four 10mm throttle-housing fasteners (green arrows). Use a 1/4-inch ratchet with a two-inch extension to clear the surrounding components.

Remove the intake manifold.
Figure 11

Remove the intake manifold. See our tech article on intake manifold removing. Be careful not to break the crankcase breather nipple (red arrows) located at the left rear of the intake manifold. Once the intake is removed, cover the intake ports (green arrows) with tape (yellow arrows).

Remove the water pump.
Figure 12

Remove the water pump. See our tech article on water pump replacing. When removing the water pump, pull it straight out of the coolant pipes (blue arrows) at the top rear of the pump.

Next, you have to remove both of the coolant pipes (green arrows).
Figure 13

Next, you have to remove both of the coolant pipes (green arrows).

Wiggle the pipes slightly back and forth as you pull them toward the front of the vehicle (red arrows).
Figure 14

Wiggle the pipes slightly back and forth as you pull them toward the front of the vehicle (red arrows).

Next, remove the knock sensors.
Figure 15

Next, remove the knock sensors. Remove the four 13mm knock sensor fasteners (red arrows). Then remove the sensors from the engine. See our tech article on knock sensor replacing for more info and reinstallation tips. Now would be a good time to replace the knock sensors. Knock sensors generate a signal voltage if specific vibration frequencies are felt caused by engine knock. The DME control unit reads these signals and adjusts engine timing if necessary. It is very important that these knock sensor are tightened down to the proper torque so they pick up the correct vibration frequencies.

Cover the intake ports with tape (green arrow).
Figure 16

Cover the intake ports with tape (green arrow). Remove the twenty 10mm fasteners (red arrows) that hold the valley pan to the block of the engine.

Lift up the valley pan from the opening in the block and remove it.
Figure 17

Lift up the valley pan from the opening in the block and remove it.

Prepare for installation by cleaning the sealing surface (red arrow) and removing any debris.
Figure 18

Prepare for installation by cleaning the sealing surface (red arrow) and removing any debris.

Snap the new valley pan and plastic cover together.
Figure 19

Snap the new valley pan and plastic cover together. Be sure the bolt holes line up correctly before snapping it together.

Installation is the reverse of the removal steps.
Figure 20

Installation is the reverse of the removal steps. Fit the new valley pan and tighten the mounting bolts. The torque specs are: Valley pan to engine 10 Nm (89 in -lb).

Use a pick to lever out the O-rings (red arrows) for the cooling pipes.
Figure 21

Use a pick to lever out the O-rings (red arrows) for the cooling pipes. You should replace these O-rings while you have the pipes out. Install the knock sensors and torque down the mounting bolts (Knock sensor 20 Nm (14.7 ft-lb)). Fit the cooling pipes and install the water pump. At this point, I like to assemble all the cooling system items and pressure test the cooling system. Defective valley pan gaskets have burned me. Once you are sure the cooling system is sealed, reassemble the engine in the reverse steps of removal. Be sure all hoses, lines and wiring harnesses are routed as they were previously.


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Comments and Suggestions:
Bruce Comments: Is the 2007 X5 4.8i the same? I didn't see the plastic cover in my part manual. I have the Valley Pan but I guess I need to buy the Knox sensors and intake manifold gaskets and water pump gasket. What else am I missing? could you give me the part numbers I would need?
March 11, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not the best with parts numbers. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out which part or repair kit you need.


Your engine has coolant pipes, it is a different style. This tech article does not apply to the N62 engine. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 

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