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View Poll Results: How would you rate the reliability of your N52 Engine?
Highly Reliable! N52 = Happiness! 1 5.56%
Reliable with common problems. Easy DIY. 9 50.00%
Somewhat Reliable. More frequent difficult repairs. Shop time. 5 27.78%
Unreliable. I've experienced a lot of minor and major failures. 3 16.67%
Highly unreliable. Frequent major failures. N52 = No money and no friends. 0 0%
Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll

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  #21  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:11 PM
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Location: T
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BGM View Post
Geez I have an '08 as well and just hit 100K last weekend. I think mine will turn into dust before I ever get to 215K.
BGM, if you take care of her she'll take car of you! These are fantastic vehicles. Sure I've had a number of repairs, but nothing too bad or overly out of the ordinary. And if you're able to do your own work it doesn't cost much. For a car like this, and no car payment, I couldn't be happier.

A few notes,

1. Change oil every 5k or less! Don't go by the 16k (absurd) recommended BMW interval.. Never use 'high milage' oil. It can destroy your seals. Always use recommended synthetic. I use Castrol Syntec 5w30.

2. If a plastic coolant part breaks, only use approved BMW coolant. Never the basic stuff. It's acidic and can cause premature breakdown of your plastic coolant parts.

3. Get your coolant changed at BMW if you have not already. They use a fluid with treatment during the flush that will breakdown and remove sediment in the system. This is very good as it protects the functionality of your heater core. If you wait you risk the core getting clogged and your cabin heat failing. You don't want this if you live in cold areas. And it could cost $6k to fix / replace the core. A ~$100 flush at BMW is very worth it!

4. p0012 and p0015 are typically Vanos related. It's easy to resolve. I'll link below. Usually it's just a cleaning required. Top Vanos is intake (p0012) and the bottom is exhaust (p0015).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOdPvvOVqsI

5. p0420 and p0430 are the infamous cat codes of death. You don't want to have to change your catalytic converters on a BMW. I was quoted $3200. You can use the following to fix this for $5 - $10. And your vehicle will still pass emissions. I didn't see a reduction of gas mileage after doing this. The first link shows you how to remove the 02 sensors. You'll then install the spacers also linked below and reinstall the 02 sensors. Poof, codes are gone!
Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H2DNRNZ/

6. The spark coils go on these from time to time. They're about $45 each at Auto Zone but you could preemptively purchase a pack of 6 on Amazon and keep them with you. You notice jerking acceleration / misfire when one fails. The codes are P0301 (Front / Radiator) - P0306 (Back / Firewall). Simply remove the decorative cover over your head. Each coil has a connector with a pull up clip. Unlatch the clip and pull the coil out. It could take 5 minutes and will spare you a tow or very troublesome drive. Personally, I would replace them all now and keep a few in the car for later just in case. A small tool kit including a set of allen keys is a good idea.

7. At 100k it's a very good idea to look into getting your Transmission fluid changed. This should prolong the life of the transmission. You may also consider replacing the fluid in your transfer case. If you wait the transmission could fail early. Or, if you change the fluid later it may start slipping or be unusable.

Just a few thoughts. I hope it helps your beast from turning to dust!
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Last edited by mejim707; 05-23-2019 at 12:46 PM.
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  #22  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:18 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mejim707 View Post

1. ~200k: Cat codes of death! P0420 P0430. Solved with spark plug non-foulers. Easy job, and saved $3195. You'll need at least 1.5" non-foulers. What you'll find at the local stores will not have the depth you'll need, even if you drill. Get them on Amazon.

!

Huh.


How come new cars dont need that? Somehow the car got to 200k without needing it....all of a sufdden the O2 sensor bung didnt shorten.


(and I dont think it is a spark plug anti-fouler... )



Ever think that there is something going on with your air-fuel ratio, that is choking up the cats and giving that code???


Or are you a 'I just fix CELs, dont dig deeper than that' kind of guy?





PS post your long and short term fuel trims,bet the car is running rich- not rich enough for a code, but rich enough to foul the cats
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  #23  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viktimize View Post
Link no work.

What's wrong with a combination wrench for removing O2 sensors?
Sorry for not providing a link.. You Can use the following link to remove the 02 sensors. And the second link to purchase the spacers.

Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H2DNRNZ/

The reason for the 02 sensor removal tool is due to the very tight location of the vertical 02 sensor. It's very tricky to remove without that tool The tool makes it easy. You can rent one form AutoZone or Advanced for about $35. They give your money back when you return it. I highly recommend getting this tool to spare you a bunch of frustration.

One note, you can snip the wire tie holding the foil flexible heat guard. This will allow you to pull the heat guard away from the end of the 02 sensor enough to get the tool over and slide down the 02 sensor.

Hope this helps.
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2008 X5 3.0si
256k Strong

Last edited by mejim707; 05-23-2019 at 12:45 PM.
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  #24  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:38 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: T
Posts: 72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Huh.


How come new cars dont need that? Somehow the car got to 200k without needing it....all of a sufdden the O2 sensor bung didnt shorten.


(and I dont think it is a spark plug anti-fouler... )



Ever think that there is something going on with your air-fuel ratio, that is choking up the cats and giving that code???


Or are you a 'I just fix CELs, dont dig deeper than that' kind of guy?





PS post your long and short term fuel trims,bet the car is running rich- not rich enough for a code, but rich enough to foul the cats

The car isn't running rich that I can see. No codes, no smog, same fuel milage, just cleared emissions and runs perfect. At idle you can't tell the car is on if you're not looking at the tachometer.

This sort of thing could happen due to the valve cover failure I noted at the beginning of this thread. That was causing the p0012 code (running rich) and lead to a slightly fouled catalytic converters thus leading to the p0420 and p0430 codes much later on. I replaced the valve cover with a new one, but it doesn't take long running rich for the cats to foul. Thankfully this was not an issue for a long time. Typically p0012 is vanos related, but the high pitched whistle coming form a failed valve cover crankcase vent valve pointed to only one possible solution, replace the valve cover (my most major repair to date).

Catalytic converts also have a life expectancy. They do fail or start performing slightly "out of spec" over time. However, the emissions still pass so how bad are they really?

Definitely not a "Fix the cel" and move on type of person. I replace everything if it fails, and try my best to maintain this fine piece of machinery. But the sad truth is a $3200 repair, to replace the catalytic converters (yes there's two) on an 11 year old car is just not sensible. However much I love the vehicle, doing a $10 repair to save thousands is the correct approach.

I hope this helps.
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2008 X5 3.0si
256k Strong
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  #25  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:40 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 62
Viktimize is an unknown quantity at this point
Quote:
Originally Posted by mejim707 View Post
Sorry for not providing a link.. You Can use the following link to remove the 02 sensors. And the second link to purchase the spacers.

Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

The reason for the 02 sensor removal tool is due to the very tight location of the vertical 02 sensor. It's very tricky to remove without that tool The tool makes it easy. You can rent one form AutoZone or Advanced for about $35. They give your money back when you return it. I highly recommend getting this tool to spare you a bunch of frustration.

One note, you can snip the wire tie holding the foil flexible heat guard. This will allow you to pull the heat guard away from the end of the 02 sensor enough to get the tool over and slide down the 02 sensor.

Hope this helps.
I don't know, it was a pretty easy job with a basic wrench. Not sure what would make it much easier? Good to know it's available though if someone gets stuck for some reason.

Your links still aren't working for some reason.
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  #26  
Old 05-23-2019, 12:47 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: T
Posts: 72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Viktimize View Post
I don't know, it was a pretty easy job with a basic wrench. Not sure what would make it much easier? Good to know it's available though if someone gets stuck for some reason.

Your links still aren't working for some reason.
Hmm, sorry about that, I've updated all the links again. Not sure why they weren't working. Here it is as well.

Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H2DNRNZ/
__________________

2008 X5 3.0si
256k Strong
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  #27  
Old 05-23-2019, 02:39 PM
BGM's Avatar
BGM BGM is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,830
BGM is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by mejim707 View Post
BGM, if you take care of her she'll take car of you! These are fantastic vehicles. Sure I've had a number of repairs, but nothing too bad or overly out of the ordinary. And if you're able to do your own work it doesn't cost much. For a car like this, and no car payment, I couldn't be happier.

A few notes,

1. Change oil every 5k or less! Don't go by the 16k (absurd) recommended BMW interval.. Never use 'high milage' oil. It can destroy your seals. Always use recommended synthetic. I use Castrol Syntec 5w30.

2. If a plastic coolant part breaks, only use approved BMW coolant. Never the basic stuff. It's acidic and can cause premature breakdown of your plastic coolant parts.

3. Get your coolant changed at BMW if you have not already. They use a fluid with treatment during the flush that will breakdown and remove sediment in the system. This is very good as it protects the functionality of your heater core. If you wait you risk the core getting clogged and your cabin heat failing. You don't want this if you live in cold areas. And it could cost $6k to fix / replace the core. A ~$100 flush at BMW is very worth it!

4. p0012 and p0015 are typically Vanos related. It's easy to resolve. I'll link below. Usually it's just a cleaning required. Top Vanos is intake (p0012) and the bottom is exhaust (p0015).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOdPvvOVqsI

5. p0420 and p0430 are the infamous cat codes of death. You don't want to have to change your catalytic converters on a BMW. I was quoted $3200. You can use the following to fix this for $5 - $10. And your vehicle will still pass emissions. I didn't see a reduction of gas mileage after doing this. The first link shows you how to remove the 02 sensors. You'll then install the spacers also linked below and reinstall the 02 sensors. Poof, codes are gone!
Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H2DNRNZ/

6. The spark coils go on these from time to time. They're about $45 each at Auto Zone but you could preemptively purchase a pack of 6 on Amazon and keep them with you. You notice jerking acceleration / misfire when one fails. The codes are P0301 (Front / Radiator) - P0306 (Back / Firewall). Simply remove the decorative cover over your head. Each coil has a connector with a pull up clip. Unlatch the clip and pull the coil out. It could take 5 minutes and will spare you a tow or very troublesome drive. Personally, I would replace them all now and keep a few in the car for later just in case. A small tool kit including a set of allen keys is a good idea.

7. At 100k it's a very good idea to look into getting your Transmission fluid changed. This should prolong the life of the transmission. You may also consider replacing the fluid in your transfer case. If you wait the transmission could fail early. Or, if you change the fluid later it may start slipping or be unusable.

Just a few thoughts. I hope it helps your beast from turning to dust!
Thanks for the information. I'm just kidding about mine turning to dust--it's in great condition. As far as your list, I've recently had the spark plugs and coils done, transmission cooler and fluid. coolant replaced (I also had a new transmission put in under CPO that would have been like $12K). Haven't had the cat codes or vanos yet (and valve stems are still good--though I know this will have to be done at some point).
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  #28  
Old 05-23-2019, 02:51 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 62
Viktimize is an unknown quantity at this point
Quote:
Originally Posted by mejim707 View Post
Hmm, sorry about that, I've updated all the links again. Not sure why they weren't working. Here it is as well.

Removal: https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...-post-cat.html
Spacers: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H2DNRNZ/
Awesome, they worked this time. I wanted to see those O2 non foulers in the event I need them. I've got 266,000km on mine, just did the O2 sensors a few weeks ago to cure an efficiency code. See how long the cats last now.
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  #29  
Old 05-23-2019, 06:38 PM
ard ard is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Sierra Foothills, California
Posts: 6,700
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mejim707 View Post
The car isn't running rich that I can see. No codes, no smog, same fuel milage, just cleared emissions and runs perfect. At idle you can't tell the car is on if you're not looking at the tachometer.

This sort of thing could happen due to the valve cover failure I noted at the beginning of this thread. That was causing the p0012 code (running rich) and lead to a slightly fouled catalytic converters thus leading to the p0420 and p0430 codes much later on. I replaced the valve cover with a new one, but it doesn't take long running rich for the cats to foul. Thankfully this was not an issue for a long time. Typically p0012 is vanos related, but the high pitched whistle coming form a failed valve cover crankcase vent valve pointed to only one possible solution, replace the valve cover (my most major repair to date).

Catalytic converts also have a life expectancy. They do fail or start performing slightly "out of spec" over time. However, the emissions still pass so how bad are they really?

Definitely not a "Fix the cel" and move on type of person. I replace everything if it fails, and try my best to maintain this fine piece of machinery. But the sad truth is a $3200 repair, to replace the catalytic converters (yes there's two) on an 11 year old car is just not sensible. However much I love the vehicle, doing a $10 repair to save thousands is the correct approach.

I hope this helps.

Vanos problems will cause the motor to run rich but only at some RPMs...this will load the cars, but not result in a flagrant 'too rich' conditoon. A chronic abuse of the cats. Seems you have had some warning signs around this? IMO if you fixed all the other stuff, fully tested vanos, flush out those solenoids, fix air leaks...you might not need the extensions.


Just saying- I like to fix root causes.
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  #30  
Old 05-28-2019, 11:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Vanos problems will cause the motor to run rich but only at some RPMs...this will load the cars, but not result in a flagrant 'too rich' conditoon. A chronic abuse of the cats. Seems you have had some warning signs around this? IMO if you fixed all the other stuff, fully tested vanos, flush out those solenoids, fix air leaks...you might not need the extensions.


Just saying- I like to fix root causes.
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