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      08-28-2017, 01:17 PM   #1
paris1
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Cost of walnut shel intake port/valve cleaning??

46k miles on my '13 35i and it's due for it's next service at 50k. No known symptoms as yet, but I'm thinking about having the intake ports/valves cleaned then as a precautionary measure. What's the going rate for this service from dealers and independents? Calif. owners' response would be most helpful.
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      08-29-2017, 09:37 AM   #2
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Regardless of location I see $350 for a guy in his home garage, $4-500 for Indy shops and $6-800 for dealer svc centers.
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      11-24-2017, 02:33 AM   #3
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What's everyone's view on walnut blasting? I've never had it done but am way up there in mileage. I don't think I have any real noticeable effects. Just wondering if it should be done and when and description of any improvement. TIA.
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      11-24-2017, 11:25 AM   #4
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Everything I’ve read says the average is 50k miles for this engine. Or you can just wait for symptoms to occur.
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      11-24-2017, 11:34 AM   #5
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My personal experience...

If you have no symptoms, then nothing will be substantially better after getting it done.

However, you will eventually get some rough idle or maybe an occasional misfire when you really get on it but for me that was way over 100k miles before I needed it done.


So, you can do it now to keep it problem free for another 50k miles or just wait until it shows signs of running rough that plugs/coils/injectors don't resolve.
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      11-24-2017, 03:27 PM   #6
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What's the worst-case scenario for not doing the walnut blasting at all...car stalls? I've maybe had 1 second of a small 'blip' in revs when idling seldomly...is that a symptom? Other than that, it still runs great.
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      11-24-2017, 03:56 PM   #7
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What are the symptoms one would experience that would cause one to consider doing it?
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      11-24-2017, 05:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2Intense View Post
What are the symptoms one would experience that would cause one to consider doing it?
Good question, also what are the causes to make walnut blasting a suggested remedy? For example, always high in the rev range, using the turbos constantly, etc?
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      11-24-2017, 07:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tranquility View Post
Good question, also what are the causes to make walnut blasting a suggested remedy? For example, always high in the rev range, using the turbos constantly, etc?
Well for a start, direct injection and the fact that there’s no “backwash” for the intake valves. All DI engines are vulnerable to this phenomenon. Some, like current generation Mazda Skyactiv fours, are better designed to alleviate the problem.
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      11-24-2017, 10:44 PM   #10
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Well ... that the positive crankcase ventilation system is not well designed. When there was fuel in the intake, it helped wash the oil vapor through. Now with direct injection its really obvious how the PCV system doesn't cut the mustard (it just pumps it into the intake). This is why folks run catch cans, and with HP run a better PCV valve (like the RB Turbo). But that doesn't solve it (just improves). The N54 PCV system is much the topic of discussion on various forums (Google is your friend). RB Turbo probably has the best complete replacement system.

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      11-25-2017, 12:05 AM   #11
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i would be reluctant to let someone blow abrasives into the intake. Murphys law says they do it wrong and a bit gets into the engine.
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      11-25-2017, 04:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
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i would be reluctant to let someone blow abrasives into the intake. Murphys law says they do it wrong and a bit gets into the engine.
That's another consideration. I assume that dealers don't do it so ppl have to go to indies, which is kinda scary if something major happens.
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      11-25-2017, 09:35 AM   #13
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My dealer will do it. You just have to ask for it.

They don't suggest it only because to inexperienced people it sounds like a bullsh$t service that the dealer is just trying to make money
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      11-25-2017, 10:33 AM   #14
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What he said^^^
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      11-25-2017, 10:55 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by impulsE89 View Post
i would be reluctant to let someone blow abrasives into the intake. Murphys law says they do it wrong and a bit gets into the engine.
There are things we have serviced that are are much more risky than this. Being afraid of something simple like as this is unnecessary.

You certainly don't want to fill the cylinder with the Walnut shells but there is a reason this abrasive is Walnut shells and not glass/sand.
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      11-25-2017, 10:58 AM   #16
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The reason they use walnut husks is because it won't damage the internals, but it hard enough to remove the carbon deposits.

Think about it ... how do you blast something into the intake running and not have it go into the combustion chamber? Unless you pull the cams out, some of the valves are open. The walnut bits just blow out / burn up. Perfectly safe.

Any good BMW independent shop can do this job, if they have the equipment. And if they have the equipment they've done it countless times because all these direct injection BMW's with crappy CCV's eventually need it. Like riding a motorcycle, not a question of if one will crash, just a question of when.

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      11-25-2017, 11:11 AM   #17
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Both valves in a port are perfectly closed when cleaning it. You can even spray in some solvent and it will sit there in a puddle.

The shell media will not get into the chamber except for the occasional grain just from the process.
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      11-25-2017, 11:31 AM   #18
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Here is a pic of my first time doing this. I wasn't sure of how much of a mess I would make. Like the vacuum hose popping off or something so I really covered everything up.

by my third time I barely bothered to cover anything.






Some pics of the required equipment





It does take a pretty good air compressor to do this. If you already have one then getting the things you need to do this service is pretty easy.


Last edited by NoQuarter; 11-25-2017 at 11:40 AM.
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      11-26-2017, 04:36 PM   #19
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Your garage is BADA$$...
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      11-26-2017, 04:57 PM   #20
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Doing it is a bit time consuming. Make sure you have a large air compressor. Learned that the hard way. You can watch videos online to see the process and it’s not super hard. But it’s a lot of labor. I think the quotes were low. Add a couple hundred to the high side is what I was quoted match what I found. It ran great afterwards
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      11-26-2017, 05:11 PM   #21
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Your garage is BADA$$...
Thanks - I really like working in it. The floor is awesome to work on.

The product is from RaceDeck
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      11-26-2017, 07:28 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoQuarter View Post
Both valves in a port are perfectly closed when cleaning it. You can even spray in some solvent and it will sit there in a puddle.

The shell media will not get into the chamber except for the occasional grain just from the process.
Just so I understand (as I've not done it myself), is the procedure to turn the motor for each cylinder until all four valves are closed? Guess I had not thought about it but makes sense.

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