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      05-20-2019, 11:02 PM   #1
jparnes1
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N54 Oil Filter Housing Gasket DIY

I recently did this service for my 2012 35i M Sport and AFAIK there's no DIY for this on the interwebs for a Z4, so here it is.

I was poking around under the car and I noticed that there was a drop of oil hanging off one of the lower water pump bolts. Looking higher up, I saw a lot of grime on top of the pump, all over the front of the engine and below the oil filter housing, where it was the wettest. I change my oil every 5,000 miles and donít remember topping it off in between so this must be a slow leak. Nonetheless, the oil can degrade the drive belt causing it to break or slip off, so this is a problem that should be fixed promptly.

As it turned out, there was only one tricky part to this job. The oil filter housing is attached to the engine with 3 bolts. One of them is hiding just under the intake manifold. I didnít have to completely remove the manifold, just undid it and lifted it up enough to get access to the bolt. While this DIY is a little involved, it really wasnít hard because everything is on top and within easy reach. I took my time and was done in 3 hours. If you feel comfortable wrenching on your car, this is probably in your wheelhouse. And because only an experienced DIYer would attempt this, Iím going to assume you know your way around a car. This DIY is written accordingly. Parts run just $25, plus oil, filter and some coolant.

Tools needed:
8, 10, 11, 13 and 17mm hex sockets, extensions, universal joint, ⅜Ē and ĹĒ ratchets, torque wrench accurate for 25 NM and below.
5mm hex bit.
E10 and E12 Torx sockets, 25 and 30 Torx bits.
Screwdriver, pick tool, motor oil, coolant.
Line clamps are handy to prevent excess spillage from detached hoses.
Parts: #17222245358 (cooler line O-ring) - two of these
#11428637820 (gasket)
#11428637821 (gasket)

Steps:
1. Remove oil filter and drain oil pan using the 17mm socket. Itís not mandatory to drain the oil, but I was due anyway. It does make things less messy later on though. Replace the drain bolt with a new crush washer and tighten to 25nm, or hand tight and Ĺ turn.
2. Release the 4 screws with a 5mm hex bit and remove the engine cover. If you have an add-on strut tower brace, that will need to come off too with a 13mm socket.
3. Loosen the four 8mm screws and remove the intake snorkel. The oil filter housing and oil cooler thermostat are circled.
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      05-20-2019, 11:03 PM   #2
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4. Loosen the six 30T screws and remove the crossmember thatís over the fan. Detach the hood release cable from under the crossmember. An arrow also points to the vacuum hose fitting that will be removed in a later step.
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      05-20-2019, 11:04 PM   #3
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5. Release the hose clipped to the top of the fan shroud. Remove the 25T screw at the right upper corner of the fan. Release the electrical connector from the fan. While using a long screwdriver to disengage the retaining clip midway down the left side of the fan, pull the fan straight up and remove.
6. Cover the alternator with a rag and place more rags under the parts that will be removed next to catch the fluids. If youíre not draining the oil, put line clamps on the oil cooler lines. Remove the 13mm bolt under the oil cooler thermostat and pull the oil cooler pipes down to release. Each pipe fitting has an O ring that will need to be replaced and coated with oil before reconnecting the pipes.
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      05-20-2019, 11:06 PM   #4
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7. Clamp the hose, remove the two 10mm bolts (red arrows) and remove the coolant hose under the housing. This is needed to gain access to the oil filter housing bolt. Release the 2 upper and 1 lower bolt (green arrows) with an E12 Torx socket and remove the oil thermostat. Clean the surface that contacts the gasket. The blue arrows show the lower and upper oil filter housing bolts.
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      05-20-2019, 11:07 PM   #5
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8. Remove air filter. Release the vacuum hose (see picture 2) where it connects in front of the air box by pressing the ring on opposite sides and pulling straight up, then unclip it from the air box. Pull up and release the 3 rubber brackets holding 3 hoses on the back side of the air box. Release the electrical connector behind the air box. Loosen the hose clamps fore and aft of the air box and pull hoses off the air box. Pull up hard on the 2 rubber grommets at the back of the air box and remove the air box. The picture shows the features at the back of the air box.
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      05-20-2019, 11:08 PM   #6
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9. Remove 1 bolt and 6 nuts from the intake manifold using an 11mm socket. A universal joint is needed for the rearward nut. I didn’t want to drop any of these so I used a magnetic socket. Undo the retaining clip at the throttle body / charge pipe connection. The circled area shows the 3 rubber brackets from step 8.
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Last edited by jparnes1; 05-20-2019 at 11:17 PM..
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      05-20-2019, 11:09 PM   #7
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10. Remove as much oil as possible from the oil filter housing. Disconnect the 2 electrical connectors. Clamp, release the clip and disconnect the coolant hose on the left side of the oil filter housing. Remove the front and top oil filter housing bolts using an E10 Torx socket. Pull the intake manifold out just enough to get the E10 socket on the last housing bolt. Remove the housing. The arrow shows where the bolt is hidden by the intake manifold. The second picture shows everything removed.
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      05-20-2019, 11:11 PM   #8
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.
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      05-20-2019, 11:12 PM   #9
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11. Use a pick tool to remove the two gaskets from the housing. Clean up any grime on the parts and engine. Install new gaskets. Installation is the reverse. When reinstalling the fan, make sure the two tabs at the bottom slide into the slots on top of the intercooler.
12. Torque specs:
Oil filter housing 22nm
Oil coolant hose under housing 15nm
Oil cooler thermostat 16nm
Oil cooler hose 16nm
Intake manifold 15nm
Shock tower nuts (if you removed a strut tower brace) 34nm. BMW says these are single use nuts.
All other screws are hand tight.
13. If youíve drained the oil, install a new oil filter and O rings, and add 7 quarts of oil.
14. Top off the coolant. To run the cooling system bleed, connect a battery tender. Without starting the car, press the start button twice so the dashboard is all lit up. Turn the temperature on both dials to the highest setting and the fan speed to the lowest setting. Press the gas pedal to the floor and hold for 10 seconds. The water pump will run and air will be purged from the system. The process takes 12 minutes and the pump will stop and start. Check the coolant level again and adjust as needed.
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      05-22-2019, 03:34 PM   #10
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Thank you for the detailed write and pictures. This will come in handy when the time comes for me to do the same.
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      05-22-2019, 03:50 PM   #11
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The only tip-off I had that these gaskets needed replacement was that there was oil scum in the coolant tank which indicated that oil was leaking internally in the housing into the coolant passageway. I don't see anything here about checking to see if your coolant was contaminated?
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      05-23-2019, 10:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paris1 View Post
The only tip-off I had that these gaskets needed replacement was that there was oil scum in the coolant tank which indicated that oil was leaking internally in the housing into the coolant passageway. I don't see anything here about checking to see if your coolant was contaminated?
I had this as well. After the repair, I had the coolant system flushed a couple times
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      02-13-2020, 07:27 AM   #13
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When taking oil filter housing apart be very careful not to get any debris in your oil. This goes even for oil filter replacement.

Just had my gaskets changed. Changed coolant, added some oil to make up for the oil lost.
Upon first startup for half a minute max all was fine. Then suddenly engine started sputtering, shaking and revs bounce up and down a bit. And CEL with limp mode soon followed. When checking fault codes it was Inlet Vanos Code.
So inlet Vanos solenoid was mechanically stuck and cam was off because of it.

Searhed online for 2 minutes and found out that its a common thing that could happen even in best service shops.

So next day both vanos solenoids came out and got cleaned. There are also Vanos non return valves that are located on side of the engine. These got removed and cleaned aswell. They have fine filters built in that can get clogged aswell.

After doing all that car runs perfect... Better than before for sure. Probably needed cleaning anyway.

So a small heads up. Be careful changing oil filter and housing gaskets. Can easily get 4 hours of extra work if not careful.
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