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      01-02-2021, 10:32 AM   #1
Alanrorr1
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Hi, what do you think the cause of this oil accumulation is from? Please see the images taken after the engine cover was removed. I zoomed in on one spot between the coil packs. I lose about 1 quart of oil every 4k miles.

I am interested for potential warranty work (ie since I only have about 3k miles left on the extended warranty), or potentially if I can fix it.

Thanks for looking.
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Last edited by Alanrorr1; 01-02-2021 at 10:47 AM..
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      01-02-2021, 02:26 PM   #2
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normally i would say it spilled when someone filling the oil. But you say i lose oil and it not sounds normal.
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      01-03-2021, 05:10 AM   #3
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Its probably valve cover or valve cover gasket. If you have warranty try to get new valve cover with new gasket.

Its very common for the gasket to fail and these plastic valve covers can develop cracks.


So its better to change the whole cover not just the gasket.


If this leaking gets really bad and seeps into sparkplug holes it can mess up coilpacks and cause misfires etc.

With new valve cover you get new pcv valve aswell as it is built into it.

New oem cover with gasket and bolts cost around 400 eur. Its rather easy to change, My indy shop did it in a few hours as i had mine replaced a few months ago. Had a tiny bit of oil residue on the cover... wiped it a few times but it came back and engine cover had oily spot underneath on the foam. Also gasket can leak from the back of the engine at the lower corner of the valve cover and drip down from there. Hard to notice that one.
I did not notice any huge oil loss but i did have to add oil once.

Do you have any oil smell in the cabin? Like when stationary and engine warm?
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      01-04-2021, 09:01 AM   #4
Alanrorr1
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Thank you for the insights from both of you! The two potential issues of someone spilling in the past or an oil leak as described seems right on track. I will clean up the oil that is there, check after a thousand or so miles, and go from there. Thanks again!
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      01-04-2021, 09:10 AM   #5
Alanrorr1
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Interesting points regarding the valve cover. I will consider replacing based on my testing. There currently is no smell in the cabin either when stationary or moving. I had that symptom in the past and was most noticeable just after I would stop for a stop light. That is not happening now.
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      01-04-2021, 01:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alanrorr1 View Post
Interesting points regarding the valve cover. I will consider replacing based on my testing. There currently is no smell in the cabin either when stationary or moving. I had that symptom in the past and was most noticeable just after I would stop for a stop light. That is not happening now.

What was the issue when you had that smell symptom?

Cleaning and checking if it comes back is a good idea. i did the same... at first i thought that mechanic spilled something and got it dirty... i even replaced my oil filler cap thinking that maybe was leaking. After checking , cleaning , replacing cap i finally went and got a new cover.
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      01-04-2021, 05:47 PM   #7
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99% That's spillage from oil change.
Stick a rag in there and drive it between oil changes and check it again, they'll prob be clean.

Oil loss is likely from something else. Do you have a catch can?
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      01-05-2021, 12:54 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eli371 View Post
99% That's spillage from oil change.
Stick a rag in there and drive it between oil changes and check it again, they'll prob be clean.

Oil loss is likely from something else. Do you have a catch can?

Dont be so sure. i have seen videos of 335i with n54 having pools of oil in these places because of failed gaskets.


For example:
https://youtu.be/c3YUZ_a6n2I?t=908

It may not be totally bad yet and is slowly developing. My cover was oily on the inner side (next to injectors) and near the pcv valve system compartments that are built into the cover. A bit further back from the oil filler cap. Almost where the crack was in the video i just added... Maybe a bit more to the back. Same general area.

Of course we all would wish it is just a spillage from previous oil change. i hope and wish for the best for Alanrorr1 too. Its just reality that these things fail often. Just do a search for N54 valve cover on youtube and you will have tons of videos pop up. Every e90 335i or 135i channel has a valve cover video.

On oil loss of 1 quart in 4000miles. I have had to add 1 liter of oil to mine almost every year... mainly when im getting close to yearly oil change. I add my 1 little bottle of oil to the engine and a month or two later i do a yearly oil change. i do around 7000km/ 4350miles in a year, maybe a bit more (8000km). So i add oil at 4000miles too and have done so 3 out of 4 years i have owned the car. That one year i didnt add any oil i did considerably less miles due to back surgery that took half a year to recover from. So maybe such oil loss is actually normal? Depends on how you drive, maybe?
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Last edited by KennyP; 01-05-2021 at 01:10 PM..
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      01-10-2021, 12:39 AM   #9
Alanrorr1
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Thanks for the additional responses! I was not expecting anything after the first ones - great to get more feedback. I have no new update yet but wanted to let you know:
- the smell in the cab from a prior oil leak was solved with replacing the valve cover gasket.
- I have no oil catch pan currently. I am not getting any drips currently under the car.

Good to know many things from the new posts, but what stands out at this moment is the oil in the video appearing on the oil packs. Fortunately, I have no seen that on the 5 out of 6 that I have replaced in the last 4 months.
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      01-10-2021, 02:10 AM   #10
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Maybe this oil is from the valve cover gasket job. Was not cleaned up well enough? It is a messy job. Valve cover is oily on the inside when taking it off and putting it back on.

The under car paneling is so good on these cars that i have never had drips on the ground at my parking spot, garage etc.

And i have had:
DCT leak: whole dct underside was oily, Only noticed when on a lift and peeked behind panels.
Oil filter housing leak: Whole front of the engine was oily. Still no drips on the ground. It was all contained by the paneling.
Valve cover. Leaked from the back of it and dripped down on downpipes etc. Again nothing on the ground.

I think oil on coilpacks is extreme situtation. Happens when you ignore it and drive on with faulty cover or gasket for extended amounts of time. I changed all my coilpacks aswell like 4-5 months before doing the valvecover and they were dry.
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      09-08-2021, 09:57 AM   #11
Alanrorr1
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My car was out of commission for a while, but now working - yay!

Yep, multiple people on this thread were right. It was due to person or people spilling the oil while filling it. I monitored for more than $1K miles and no additional oil was seen in the locations mentioned. Thank you all for your suggestions and other good information!!
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