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5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

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Old 08-21-2010, 05:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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2001 530i Oil Leak

Hi,
I have had this car for about a year and a half. About a year ago i started noticing little oil drip underneath. I am very mechanically inclined but working on the beemer was intimidating. I am an old hotrod/4x4 guy. Anyway today the radiator blew on me. I refuse to pay for dealer/shop labor prices unless it is a have to situation. So I pulled the radiator out and it went rather good. Only broke one of the clips that hold the fan shroud on the bottom, by the way if anyone knows where to get these that would be great.

Anyway dealer wanted 580 for a radiator and the local auto parts stores can get them within a week or so, after reading some threads on this forum I am ordering a Behr one from Autohaus AZ

Anyway while i wait I figured since the fan and everything is out of the car might as well fix the leak too. It is on the driver's side. There was a ton of oil on the lower skid shroud ( dunno what you wanna call it, it is under the motor).

So looking for typical spots it would leak from the two most common were the valve cover and the oil filter housing. Looking at the motor it seems that the valve cover would most likely leak on passenger side when it dripped. I didnt see anything there so I started removing stuff so I could get a better look at the driver side. Alternator gone, air cleaner, PS reservoir etc. Reading where these typically leak were on the bottom around the bottom two bolts. I could not get low enough to look under there however on the block between the middle set of bolts and the bottom set on the housing to the motor mount there are what look like cooling fins as a visual reference. Above that are what looks like a waffle pattern kinda. Inside these "fins" and on the waffle pattern oil is pooled up .

Would this be the typical area that would pool up as a result of this housing leaking or is there something else I should check? Above the waffle pattern is completely dry as well as behind the motor mount towards the firewall.

Thanks for any input.
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Old 08-23-2010, 10:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Just taking a shot, but could it have been spilled during a fill?
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Old 08-24-2010, 09:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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No, I have been the only one to put oil in the car and I know I havent spilled it. It has been leaking for about a year and in the meantime I have had to add oil every now and then. i work from home so i dont drive it that much
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Old 09-03-2010, 09:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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More likely it's the oil filter housing gasket.

But here is the list of things I would do.

VGC
Oil filter housing gasket
CCV and its associated hoses
New spark plugs ( NGK)

You will notice the difference once above has been replaced.
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