Do I really need this tool? - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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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#1 (permalink) Old 12-25-2010, 08:10 PM
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Do I really need this tool?

1989 E34 525i M20

Think the head gasket has blown as it has overheated and blown water out of the radiator.

Car is currently 100km from home but I am researching & studying the Bentley manual.

Apparently there is PCV valve with a spring between the head & the block and a tool (111290) is needed, or is it?

What could I use as an alternative?
Is it a total HF without the tool?

Any other traps for BMW noobs doing this?
I am a new DIY mech but I think this job looks to be within my capabilities.
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#2 (permalink) Old 12-29-2010, 02:25 AM
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How serious is the requirement to tension the head bolts 90deg after initial tensioning?
Do I really need the BMW tool or is there an alternate method to accurately gauge this?
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#3 (permalink) Old 01-10-2011, 07:51 AM
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Blowing water out of #5 cylinder, after filling radiator, letting sit for a few days and turning over with plugs removed. It's now in the shed and the head is coming off! Hope it's only a head gasket but it may be a previous repair that has failed.

I guess I will find out about any special tools on the way through the Bentley book.
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#4 (permalink) Old 01-17-2011, 08:12 AM
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Size is important

The only "special"tool I need for this job is a female Torx socket. Size is important! You would think this info would be easy to find!

Is E12 the correct size for the M20 b25 motor?
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#5 (permalink) Old 01-18-2011, 03:13 AM
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Sorry to hear about this. Hopefully its not a cracked head. How/why did it overheat in the first place?


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#6 (permalink) Old 01-18-2011, 09:27 AM
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My first guess would be a failed fan clutch and driving around town on a really hot day
The car has had a tap fitted into the heater line, I suppose to turn off the heater but may have other implications.
The water level switch was bypassed and that may have added to the problem.
I drove it from Adelaide previously and it used no water and went well, but then it was raining

I'm contemplating a Davies-Craig fan and electric water pump

The Torx socket is actually an E14 and when it arrives I will rip the head off and have a look. I'm hoping it is only a failed gasket. There is no water in the oil or oil in the water, just bubbles in the radiator.

After Tim bought the car others went on sale for much less than he paid for his.
I'm tempted to get one for myself as a project. I quite like the car and it is not too hard to work on
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#7 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 05:28 AM
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I've replaced my radiator and fan with one of these
Zionsville Autosport: BMW E39 - E38 Super Duty Cooling Kit
Not a cheap option when you throw freight from the US on top, but a good product.
You should be able to get Torx bits from most hardware stores worth their salt. I replace the torx bits with regular hex equivalents.

Oh yeah, I had a hell of a time getting my thermo clutch off, I broke a tool and plenty of knuckle skin as well as the water pump drive pulley and bent two bolt head in the effort. In the end brute force ruled, but it didn't want to budge with a bit of coersion with a cold chisel and hammer. Given the pulley (plastic) was broken, we removed it totally and put a large stilsen (pipe wrench) onto the pulley shaft and a large 32mm shifter onto the thermo clutch shaft, and two large guys managed to crack it loose with all the strength they could muster between them, but what a pain in the a$$.

Good luck with it all, hopefully your right about the head gasket.


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#8 (permalink) Old 01-19-2011, 07:33 AM
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The saga continues

Also find that there is no temp switch to turn on the aux fan so thats another nail in the overheating problem. Need to find out if the aux fan actually works.

I'm investigating a Davies-Craig thermatic fan with an electric water pump. This involves knocking the vanes out of the standard pump and removing the thermostat. Probably do away with the water pump drive belt too.
The electronics in the system control water flow through the block and the fan speed too.The pump is externally mounted in the bottom radiator hose line.

I see some very cheap e34's on the internet, mostly with head problems. The M20 is a very simple motor and so far hasn't given me any nasty surprises during dismantling.
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#9 (permalink) Old 01-20-2011, 03:27 AM
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So the previosu owner disconnected the Auxilary fan switch. It should be too hard to test the Auxilary fan if you can find a connector in the circuit somewhere near the fan to apply 12 volts to the fan.
Good luck with it all.


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#10 (permalink) Old 01-26-2011, 03:35 PM
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Why not do more than one thing?
Make sure your radiator is cleaned out and there's good water flow.
Some cars have a larger pulley than others- you can overdrive your water pump with a little smaller pulley for better effect.
The fan clutch should work OK for five or ten years. Take it off, and add a flexalite (or similar) fan.
Change out that stock electric fan with a 2k cfm aftermarket, and get an adjustable external thermostat switch for it.
Add a tranny oil cooler, and an engine oil cooler, and take some of the load off your cooling system.
Make sure you have a air dam separating the front and rear of the radiators- some cars have been known to "loop" the hot air at stop lights and slow traffic.

Then again, I vaguely remember something about a head leak at that location that means that the last guy screwed something up, and you may indeed have a crack.
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#11 (permalink) Old 01-27-2011, 08:58 AM
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Ohh Yes! Definitely do have a crack on No 5 from under the valve seat to the water jacket. Buggerit! Taken to a place for welding heads. Will not cost as much as a new one. (I hope) Waiting to hear if that is the only problem. May have to find another head yet.

Looking for gasket set etc, see stuff on ebay which includes timing belt and tensioner as part of the deal. Looks OK any experiences with ebay stuff??
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#12 (permalink) Old 01-28-2011, 04:30 AM
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Good luck with the head repairs. Have you got a good place doing the work?


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#13 (permalink) Old 01-28-2011, 07:03 PM
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I hope so!
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#14 (permalink) Old 02-08-2011, 05:57 AM
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How did you go with your head repairs?


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#15 (permalink) Old 02-08-2011, 08:34 AM
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Still waiting for bits to come from Pelican Parts. Need valve stem seals to complete the head work (I nearly said head job). Expecting them in the next week or so I hope.
Damn it's good that the $AUD is so high at the moment.
(good for me, not farmers etc)
I'm hopeful we will finish up with a decent reliable car!
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