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Old 03-08-2019, 09:42 AM
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Another oil leak thread...

Hello.

My 2007 BMW x5 4.8i 105k miles has been to the shop twice within the last month or so due to various oil leaks. Car was leaking bad. First visit was to replace the oil cooler thermostat gasket. This one was leaking heavily.

$860 later I am back on the road. A few days later, I spotted oil on my garage floor. took a look and voila the leak is back with the same symptoms. oil collects at the bottom of the front diff. leak was as heavy as before the repair.

Took the car back to the BMW indy shop that did the oil cooler therm gasket. after inspecting the car, I was told and shown that it's my left valve cover and upper timing cover gaskets but the leak isn't too bad and I could put it off.

A week later, I started smelling burnt oil through the dash vents. later that week, I happened to have the hood up with engine running, I noticed smoke coming out of left side of the engine. This confirmed the valve cover gasket. Took the car in again and had that taken care of.

$1500 later, I am back on the road. Fast forward one week, take a guess .. leak is back. oil collects at the bottom of the front diff running down from a higher point.

leak seems to be concentrated to the front left of the engine so the plastic shield and the front end of the skid plate have oil on them.

I am hoping the experts here can give me an advice on what else could leak from there?

I did check around the valve cover, it's pretty dry, the upper timing cover seems dry too.

one other thing I noticed when I inspected the engine from under the car. I see drips of oil collecting at the bottom of one of the oil cooler lines, it's where the line curves ( u shape) to enter the thermostat housing.

should i take the x5 back to the shop and say it was't done right?

Thanks in advance for any tips.
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Old 03-08-2019, 09:55 AM
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I think those two oil lines into the thermostat gasket have o-rings. Maybe those lines are what is leaking. An extension mirror would help you locate it. I just took my thermostat gasket off last night. Some UV dye might help you find it to. I wouldn't just walk in and say they messed up the job. If it has only been a week since they worked on it I would think they would check over there work and identify the leak.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unicorn View Post
I think those two oil lines into the thermostat gasket have o-rings. Maybe those lines are what is leaking. An extension mirror would help you locate it. I just took my thermostat gasket off last night. Some UV dye might help you find it to. I wouldn't just walk in and say they messed up the job. If it has only been a week since they worked on it I would think they would check over there work and identify the leak.
The first time I took the car back after they did the oil cooler therm gasket, they confirmed it wasn't that and it was the UTCG and VCG. not sure how easy it is to have a good visibility of the oil cooler therm without taking bunch of stuff out of the way. their response was pretty quick. took them like 10 mins to call me into the shop to show me the problem.

I ran my hand down along the oil cooler lines and indeed I got fresh oil on my hand from around the thermostat. it would be a huge mistake to not replace the o-rings when they did the gasket!!

is it the same amount of work to replace the two o-rings?

thank you.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:27 AM
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I was just thinking, could the upper oil pan be leaking? would the oil end up at the bottom of the front diff cover?
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:31 AM
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is it the same amount of work to replace the two o-rings?

thank you.[/QUOTE]

It is only one bolt that holds the oil lines into the thermostat housing. It is the easiest one to get to. Once the bolt is out the lines are easily disconnected. A mirror could let you see it. It would take removing the fan, belt, and alternator to get to it I believe. The o-rings should be replaced at the same time as that gasket. It is still mostly a blind job. If you could confirm the o-rings were the source of the leak I think you would have an argument for them to replace them.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:36 AM
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Not the best picture but this is where the lines connect to the thermostat housing.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unicorn View Post
Not the best picture but this is where the lines connect to the thermostat housing.
I see oil drop hanging at the bottom of the tube pointed to by the green arrow.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:41 AM
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I'm not sure if you can get a good picture of it with the alternator still on but I took all of my pictures with my iPhone at a 45 degree angle. You may be able to snap a pic and get the details.
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Old 03-08-2019, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unicorn View Post
I'm not sure if you can get a good picture of it with the alternator still on but I took all of my pictures with my iPhone at a 45 degree angle. You may be able to snap a pic and get the details.
I tried from the engine bay i couldn't get my hand down there with a phone. not even with a selfie stick. I also tried with a mirror, no luck. I can see the cooler lines from under the car with the skid plate removed so perhaps I can get a shot from there ..
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Old 03-08-2019, 01:41 PM
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ok I got a nice shot from under the engine of the oil cooler thermostat and lines..
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