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Old 10-17-2020, 12:43 AM
ValkyrE53 ValkyrE53 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 8
ValkyrE53 is on a distinguished road
Im having similar issues, very rough idle on cold startup.
I first noticed the issue after flying cross country to pickup a X5 I bought, being stopped at long red light for the first time, and as I accelerated blue / white smoke out the exhaust. The smoke would only be noticeable when starting from a stop, as the oil would leak then burn on acceleration.
Reading up on this issue I found bad seals would cause that rough idle, especially on cold startup.

From good feedback here on the forum, for my issue it sounded much like worn valve stem seals, which for a DIY mechanic Id have the engine opened up for a month, and Im not prepared for such a job . . . not having that kind of free time, plus specialty tools (kits run $800+) which Id need to find much cheaper on a small budget.

I did check & replace the (easy to access) PCVs Crankcase Vent Valves . . . passenger side rubber had hairline cracks, but very little carbon buildup. Replaced that side with Bosch (oe) found on eBay @ $25.
The drivers side still looked ok, but I had found a Febi on eBay @ $16, and the curiosity of me always wants to see how an aftermarket holds up -vs- an OE brand.

Since I just bought this X5, I decided to take it to the BMW Stealership for State Inspection . . . plus see what kind of other troubles I purchased.

They advised the blue smoke is likely the Valve Stem Seals, but I could still pass Emissions, which it did. They thankfully advised I could still drive it no problem, but just maintain the oil level. Then the quotes crushed me, $7k to lower the engine from below, clean out the carbon and replace the gaskets and valve stems! $5k to open the engine from above and just replace those valve stem seals.

I explained I was concerned about dumping that much into such an old vehicle which I knew little about its history, care by previous owners, etc.
They then suggested a Pressure Test (they would need a whole day to perform) to see if its just those seals, or if other issue areas are present.
I didnt schedule that yet, hesitant as Im concerned that test might speed up the failure of other seals, or blow out the valve stem seals even more, leading to an insane oil burn rate.

Id suggest doing the PCVs, if the smoke still persists, decide for yourself based on how long yould like to keep the X5 if the valve stem seal replacement is worth it, because if thats what it is, its not terrible to continue to drive it, just so long as you check the oil level weekly, and carry a funnel and some cheap fully synthetic oil with you at all times, just incase.

I typically swear by Mobile1 0w-40 (one of the last true synthetics) for my bmws, but when topping off a engine thats leaking / burning oil Im using this Walmart brand as its insanely affordable $31 for 12 quarts . . .

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