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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After reading nearly hundreds of threads on the M54 cold weather CCV installation, I always wondered why it went easy for some and was a PIA for others. And now I know.

BMW has Scheiße for quality control.

First, I am quite glad I opted to remove the intake manifold. Otherwise I think it would be nearly impossible to see that my new CCV’s “connecting line” which twists up in through a gap in the manifold is deformed (#3 on the RealOEM CCV diagram - part#11617504535). No wonder some of y’all end up cursing this project, but it is easy if you don’t get a defective part.

Lucky me.

In the following picture you can see the old line easily fitting up through the gap when connected to the new cold weather insulated CCV.



The new hose I received (foam insulation removed for comparison) hits the manifold. It’s about an inch and a half away from the gap and will not fit unless you bend it out of shape and put enough pressure on the hose so it can’t help but crack over time.



(Again, both hoses are connected to the CCV, but the new part when correctly aligned just can’t turn to lock in place since it hits the manifold.)


In these next comparison pics, the old and new hoses are exactly lined up at the CCV gizmo connection so you can then see the new part has two manufacturing defects.



First, the bends in the plastic are not 90 degrees. (Note: the old hose is in front, and part of its outer ring clip broke off during disassembly.)











This is a hard plastic, not a pliable hose, and it looks like I’ll have to use a heat gun or something to reshape the new part, because forcing the hose into place and just hoping that engine heat will soften it into shape is wishful thinking. (This is where marrying a plastics engineer comes in handy. She can tell me if this particular plastic can even be re-shaped.)

The second defect is that the connecting elbow with the Y nipple is twisted out of place about 20 degrees. Whoever is manufacturing this part for BMW is not taking care to see that the elbow is seated at the correct angle when sealed to the hose. This can’t help but put stress on the connection that will lead to a later break. The hoses are aligned so that both elbows should be pointing in the same direction off to the left. The new hose elbow is twisted of to the right.





So if you’re lucky enough to get a part manufactured during “third shift” (or in a third world country) good luck with that.



BTW
I will be adding a follow up post in this thread about the vacuum hose issue with the CCV. (More CCV cold weather blues.) But don’t yet have the time.

Schnell
 

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you are fine. i had the same problem but everything worked. over time the head and tension will shape the plastic into place (it is not wishful thinking)
 

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It'll fit, just keep working on it. When I did mine, it was basically doing the repair blind because I refused to take off my IM. One thing I found out is that you don't really have to twist the stuff together. With enough force, it will simply snap together. Problem is getting enough leverage to make it all snap. Hardest one for me was the one that weasels up from the separator through the IM.

Just keep at it. You'll get it together. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
you are fine. i had the same problem but everything worked. over time the head and tension will shape the plastic into place (it is not wishful thinking)
Glad you had a successful experience, but when I look at this, the tension vectors aren't likely to mold the hose into the correct 90 degree angle bends. I'd love to see the current shape of your hose (when removed) to compare to the old batch. (And yes I realize it's unlikely you'll rip apart your car to satisfy my engineer's curiosity and prove me wrong, but that doesn't mean I won't stay curious. Maybe I'll do that myself next year.)

BMW finally redesigned the bottom hose coming off the CCV with a 45 degree bend because the tension vectors on that elbow even broke the soft hose, and it's been well noted that the upper hard plastic hoses harden and become brittle.

But let's say the plastic won't get brittle over time and break off at the nipple-end somewhere. (Or how long would you consider acceptable? Five years? Ten?) Regardless, there's no excuse for such lousy quality control on the tolerances, especially on a critical part of a system that was redesigned to avoid the BMW exploding engine syndrome.

If that ring clamp hadn't broken, I'd clean out the old hose, put the foam cover tube over top, and use that. Still might do that anyway and secure the upper connection some other way (think duct tape and cable ties ;^)

Mach
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
..."redesigned to avoid the BMW exploding engine syndrome"...

Wow, someone care to elaborate on this one? I've heard of CCV fail but detonation? Sweet!
In cold weather (think Canada and Vermont, but even down into PA) the CCV rubber diaphragm (the top part of the gizmo) can freeze either open or shut. In one case, pressure will build up and blow out the valve cover gasket, in the other, oil will be sucked up the CCV dipstick tube, through the intake manifold and hydrolock the engine. When this starts to happen, huge billowing clouds of white smoke will blow out the tail pipe as the engine starts to burn the oil before it hydrolocks and bends the valves (as in BOOM).

BMW has decided to blame this on driver error, meaning taking too many short trips during the winter whereby condensation builds up and freezes in the various parts of the CCV system. The more short trips, the more ice will form inside. I've posted pics of the ice elsewhere here, so...

Google should let you find a few pictures, and I'm too worn out to track something down for you on Youtube.

The BMW Car Club of America's magazine (Roundel) publishes "Tech Talk" with Mike Miller. Either this or last month Mike wrote about it. (Like I said, I have read hundreds of posts on this.)

The M54 engine is prone to CCV freezing, and the fix includes foam insulation around the CCV gizmo and the various hoses, along with a redesigned dipstick guidetube. I plan to post more pictures of the New v. Old dipstick tube to show why this part will also freeze, but I need to get this car back up on the road.

In more recent engines, BMW put the CCV directly into the intake manifold to keep it from freezing, and moved the oil separator (the bottom part of the CCV gizmo) elsewhere.

Mach
 

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In cold weather (think Canada and Vermont, but even down into PA) the CCV diaphragm (the top part of the gizmo) can freeze either open or shut. In one case, pressure will build up and blow out the valve cover gasket, in the other, oil will be sucked up the CCV dipstick tube, through the intake manifold and hydrolock the engine. When this starts to happen, huge billowing clouds of white smoke will blow out the tail pipe as the engine starts to burn the oil before it hydrolocks and bends the valves (as in BOOM).

BMW has decided to blame this on driver error, meaning taking too many short trips during the winter whereby condensation builds up and freezes in the various parts of the CCV system. The more short trips, the more ice will form inside. I've posted pics of the ice elsewhere here, so...

Google should let you find a few pictures, and I'm too worn out to track something down for you on Youtube.

The BMW Car Club of America's magazine (Roundel) publishes "Tech Talk" with Mike Miller. Either this or last month Mike wrote about it. (Like I said, I have read hundreds of posts on this.)

The M54 engine is prone to CCV freezing, and the fix includes foam insulation around the CCV gizmo and the various hoses, along with a redesigned dipstick guidetube. I plan to post more pictures of the New v. Old dipstick tube to show why this part will also freeze, but I need to get this car back up on the road.

In more recent engines, BMW put the CCV directly into the intake manifold to keep it from freezing, and moved the oil separator (the bottom part of the CCV gizmo) elsewhere.

Mach
please do. i am curious about the dipstick as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Since water condensation builds up within the CCV system (which is supposed to burn off later - I'm sure you've seen vapor or water dripping out of a tail pipe - which btw means the car was just recently started) there are times when you will temporarily see the "mayo goo" in various places (such as underneath the oil cap). Heat the engine up and all that goes away.

The oil separator (bottom funnel part of the CCV gizmo) is supposed to collect larger droplets of oil from the fumes inside the valve cover. These drops then slide out the bottom, down the hose and into the dipstick tube. But... this means at times you could pull out the dipstick to check your oil level and see the "mayo" or "coffee cream" goo and scream "agghh my headgasket [email protected]#$%" (when it didn't).

To avoid this, the oil separator drained into an outer sleeve of the dipstick guide-tube so the dipstick wouldn't ever get goo on it. So the old design had a tube within a tube. The outer sleeve into which the oil separator drained was very narrow, and mayo goo tended to freeze inside as it slowly oozed down the hose and hit a cold metal dipstick guide tube. Hey, BMW later fixed all that by getting rid of the dipstick altogether.

Just so you know, the dipstick does not go all the way down through the guide tube and out the bottom. Instead the oil goes up into the guide tube when your oil level is correct. In the old tube, the goo would have mixed with the oil way down in the oil pan. With the new design, it looks like goo might ooze down through the nipple and get on the dipstick (when there is goo).

Here you can see how narrow the outer sleve is on the old guide tube at left. I've seen pictures where the ice accumulated right up the hose and into the oil separator itself. (The new design is on the right.)



In addition, the old tube in tube idea required a vent hole:





So if anybody thinks they solved the freezing hydrolock problem by just putting a foam jacket on the CCV, well....
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
over time the head and tension will shape the plastic into place (it is not wishful thinking)
Well, I got some results back from the lab, and the plastic hose is a thermo-set.

During mfg., the goose-neck hose is soft and pliable to begin with - likely shipped rolled on a spool by the plastic hose mfg. and is rather flexible. Then it's cut to length, the ends are inserted, the part is curved into shape and set rigid by heat - the same heat welds the plastic hose to the elbow ends. So more heat won’t make it soft (or the ends would fall off), just more brittle over time and prone to break under stress along a ridge line that can't be seen under the foam insulating tube. And BANG you have a hidden vacuum leak.

Maybe I'm wrong here, but this isn't a part I want to replace again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
A BIG HUGE THANK You to Mike @ TheBMWPartStore

A BIG HUGE THANK You to Mike @ TheBMWPartStore :bow: http://www.thebmwpartstore.com

First, I think I'm a really great guy, but I seriously doubt that I would have done this:

Mike @ TheBMWPartStore went through about, what, twenty of these hoses to find one, while not perfect, is most certainly acceptable.

The new hose (without foam for picture clarity) hooks to the CCV gizmo with no trouble, and as you can see, twists up into the intake manifold opening the way it's supposed to. :woot:

While I took about ten pictures, in the end only one is important:



Granted, the other end doesn't line up without a bit of a twist on it, but nothing like the torture I had to put the bad hose through.



Again, I am stunned - amazed - speechless - at the customer service Mike provided when he could have just written me off as a perfectionist kook (which I am, but whom among you would trust your baby to a mechanic?)

Now if only BMW took the same care with quality control.

Thanks again Mike,
Schnell
 

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hmmm... I shall get rid of the CCV valve and install an HPF oil catch can. Then I won't have to worry about dipsticks, and plastic brittle hoses.

I'm going to start by plugging the two ports on top of the intake, plugging the oil dipstick port, and fitting a hose to the valvecover access port into a container with a filter element as a temporary catch can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hmmm... if you have an inlet hose, where's the outlet hose for "de-oiled" fumes to go? And I'd be curious to know how you wouldn't throw a check engine light. But I haven't looked closely at the HPF product.

Personally I like the Mann system, and there are a number of threads that deal with installation.



But since I'd rather not deal with having to clean the catch can all the time, I'd recommend this thread:

http://vsetrack.com/track_reports/2010/bmw_motorsport_oil_separator/bmw_motorsport_oil_separator.htm

BUT - Neither solution will address the freezing problem. the HPF design is for the race track, not for three inches of snow or 20 degree weather driving.

If your car is a daily driver during winter, you may wish to read this:

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpost.php?p=12561364&postcount=184

As stated the CCV system BMW chose for this car has two parts, the oil separator (cone at the bottom) and the Check Valve diaphragm (positioned 90 degrees from the graphic below) which is supposed to work better than the simple flap valve type. Granted the "performance" claims are from the Mann Filter Website: (see lower right graph)



Article here: http://www.mann-hummel.com/company/index.html?iKeys=3.1.180.0.0&cScr=35&rec_no=270

Of course I'm way not the racer, so ... more concerned with the freezing stuff and passing inspection. I've been looking at Volvo engines, and might just put a PTC nipple in my E46 somewhere.

While the BMW foamy rubber insulating jacket fix just looks cheesy, it's for my daughter's car and will fit her driving habits.
 

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^^ back into the intake. perhaps attaching a y pipe and fitting two hoses to this piece



You won't throw a CEL light because the sytem would be closed.

You can also just not route the fumes back into the intake for simplicity if you so choose.
 

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Since water condensation builds up within the CCV system (which is supposed to burn off later - I'm sure you've seen vapor or water dripping out of a tail pipe - which btw means the car was just recently started) there are times when you will temporarily see the "mayo goo" in various places (such as underneath the oil cap). Heat the engine up and all that goes away.

The oil separator (bottom funnel part of the CCV gizmo) is supposed to collect larger droplets of oil from the fumes inside the valve cover. These drops then slide out the bottom, down the hose and into the dipstick tube. But... this means at times you could pull out the dipstick to check your oil level and see the "mayo" or "coffee cream" goo and scream "agghh my headgasket [email protected]#$%" (when it didn't).

To avoid this, the oil separator drained into an outer sleeve of the dipstick guide-tube so the dipstick wouldn't ever get goo on it. So the old design had a tube within a tube. The outer sleeve into which the oil separator drained was very narrow, and mayo goo tended to freeze inside as it slowly oozed down the hose and hit a cold metal dipstick guide tube. Hey, BMW later fixed all that by getting rid of the dipstick altogether.

Just so you know, the dipstick does not go all the way down through the guide tube and out the bottom. Instead the oil goes up into the guide tube when your oil level is correct. In the old tube, the goo would have mixed with the oil way down in the oil pan. With the new design, it looks like goo might ooze down through the nipple and get on the dipstick (when there is goo).

Here you can see how narrow the outer sleve is on the old guide tube at left. I've seen pictures where the ice accumulated right up the hose and into the oil separator itself. (The new design is on the right.)



In addition, the old tube in tube idea required a vent hole:





So if anybody thinks they solved the freezing hydrolock problem by just putting a foam jacket on the CCV, well....
Excellent post!
Thank you!
I have heard that you can modify the old version dipstick by drilling it out, and drilling the vent hole...

Here is my thread on the CCV:
CCV Replacement FYI - M54 (Multi-page thread 1 2 3 4 5)
Jason5driver
http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1376457
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Hi Jason,

Since the price of the new guide tube dropped down to about $180, I'm not sure all the work involved in reaming out that inner tube all the way up to the "Y" is worth it. Or do you mean drilling down the opening of the small "Y" through the separating wall and into the larger inner pipe?

Interesting. I might just do that, poke a scope up to double check and put the modified part up for sale.

This fix is for my daughter's car and I felt a lot better using new parts for her. Haven't decided what I'm going to do for my car yet. And yep, yours was one of the hundreds of posts I read. I think I've forgotten more about the CCV than I ever knew.:rofl:

(Up next, sometime, ..... bashing .... I mean explaining the vacuum hose and the CCV.)
 

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You mean something like this??


(swiped image)

Where's the check valve?
That or alternetavely venting it to the atmosphere. just before the y pipe. I believe the HPF unit has an integrated but idk
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
http://www.horsepowerfreaks.com/partdetails/HPF/Engine/Oil_Catch_Tanks/E46/16619

$500 :yikes:

The main oil catch tank simply twists off by hand just like an oil filter and allows you to safely pour the oil back into the engine.
From the drug bin? Good luck not spilling that (at least from the pictures shown).

From what I remember, mayo goo collects in the can, and would need to be discarded, and you'd have to replace the oil component. Just another added cost. There's no mention of a check valve, and no mention of where it hooks back into the engine manifold. (But admittedly the pictures are from an M3 and I don't know my way around an S54 very well.)

I'm not discounting the idea, I just like the M5 oil separator better - no need to drain anything (every tankful of gas!?) since it has the drain into the crankcase. And one could put whatever steel media inside, if that helps the collecting process.

The diaphragm style check valve is supposed to keep an even flat pressure over rpms, where the standard flap design has a gradient. You'll have to read the previous link I gave to the Mann article and decide for yourself which gives better performance.

Yet again, none of that deals with the freezing problem. Maybe I'll spend some time to check if another valve cover, which has a diaphram check valve inside, fits the M54, but I'm not hopeful.
 

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Hi Jason,

Since the price of the new guide tube dropped down to about $180, I'm not sure all the work involved in reaming out that inner tube all the way up to the "Y" is worth it. Or do you mean drilling down the opening of the small "Y" through the separating wall and into the larger inner pipe?

Interesting. I might just do that, poke a scope up to double check and put the modified part up for sale.

This fix is for my daughter's car and I felt a lot better using new parts for her. Haven't decided what I'm going to do for my car yet. And yep, yours was one of the hundreds of posts I read. I think I've forgotten more about the CCV than I ever knew.:rofl:

(Up next, sometime, ..... bashing .... I mean explaining the vacuum hose and the CCV.)
I am not sure if it worth it either.
I have yet to drill my existing original dipstick tube.
My mechanic is the one with the idea of drilling out the original tube.
I am pretty convinced that the original dipstick tube design IS one of the major sources to the CCV failure.

I just replaced my CCV with the cold-weather version about a year ago.
I am on my THIRD CCV.
And, I can tell it is starting to fail, again...
Soon, I will do the drill-out trick on the dipstick tube, and clean-out the rest of the CCV and components.



http://www.horsepowerfreaks.com/partdetails/HPF/Engine/Oil_Catch_Tanks/E46/16619

$500 :yikes:

From the drug bin? Good luck not spilling that (at least from the pictures shown).

From what I remember, mayo goo collects in the can, and would need to be discarded, and you'd have to replace the oil component. Just another added cost. There's no mention of a check valve, and no mention of where it hooks back into the engine manifold. (But admittedly the pictures are from an M3 and I don't know my way around an S54 very well.)

I'm not discounting the idea, I just like the M5 oil separator better - no need to drain anything (every tankful of gas!?) since it has the drain into the crankcase. And one could put whatever steel media inside, if that helps the collecting process.

The diaphragm style check valve is supposed to keep an even flat pressure over rpms, where the standard flap design has a gradient. You'll have to read the previous link I gave to the Mann article and decide for yourself which gives better performance.

Yet again, none of that deals with the freezing problem. Maybe I'll spend some time to check if another valve cover, which has a diaphram check valve inside, fits the M54, but I'm not hopeful.
Do you have information or a link about the M5 ccv?
Pictures?
I am tempted to go this route or use the Mann setup, for sure.

Also, look-up Poolman.
He has done the catch-can technique on his 525i.
He fabricated it himself, and is working well.

Thanks!
Jason
 
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