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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My car was leaking oil like crazy and I realized it was the oil filter housing gasket that had pretty much turned into plastic. The car which is a zhp convertible has 118k miles on it and pretty sure the OFHG was never changed. This was not really a fun job but I got it done and replaced the water pump and thermostat while I was there. Also put a new vanos line during the process.

Now it didn’t seem like the car is leaking from there anymore but I can still clearly smell oil coming in through my vents after driving it hard and sitting idle in my driveway. I can see that oil is leaking from the valve cover area which is probably the cause of the smell but I had done the valve cover gasket about 30k miles ago! Can the VCG go bad that quickly ? I don’t think I did it wrong - is that even possible ?

How can I tell if it’s the valve cover gasket and not the actual valve cover that has gone bad ?

I guess I can do the VCG again if it comes down to it but my back is really not happy after the OFHG job .

Any advice would be appreciated.


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When you replaced the vcg, did you replace the 15 grommets under the fasteners? That's very important. What brand of gasket did you use?

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^this^
Also common for oil to drip from hidden crevices for 2-3 weeks after replacing the OFHG. But, if you're seeing leaking around valve cover, that's likely issue. Which gasket did you use for VCG? Cause some don't last. Preferred VCG here, are either dealer or Elring. GL
 

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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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1) Jack the car to a better height, less bending over. Trust me I have some experience.

2) What brand of gasket? Along with the grommets question above.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Unfortunately I don’t think I replaced the rubber grommets from what I can remember but I did it back in 2016 so memory is pretty vague. Are those grommets that important that it’ll cause them to leak ? The brand I used was victor reinz which I believe is erling.


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Are those grommets that important that it’ll cause them to leak ?

The grommets are HALF of the job. The nuts that go over the grommets are limited as to how far you can tighten them down, owing to the length of the shoulder. So any compression onto the valve cover itself (then pushes on the gasket) is created by the rubber between the washer and the VC. The grommets age and compress over time. Limiting the amount of force being applied to the valve cover/gasket. YES the grommets are important!!

The brand I used was victor reinz which I believe is erling.

IMO Reinz = Garbage. Second only to URO. Definitely NOT Elring. Two completely different companies...
(NOT to be confused with Rein.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks so much! That is very helpful and unfortunately it seems like I’ll have to do the job all over again because I don’t rmr replacing the grommets. I was just a bit confused with the brand because this is what I had purchased and it says elring next to it but seems like it’s victor reinz.

Guess I’ll redo the job properly this time and get an elring vcg.




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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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This is what I speak of many times.
Websites are misleading as to what is/is not OEM. Purposeful deception on the part of the vendor.

I created quite a stir about 5 years ago on my professional group.
I ordered/received OEM VC gaskets for the M3 S54 engine. Elring.
After having two leak (one twice!) I did some digging. In an Elring package was a Reinz gasket WTF WTF?

Made a very simple post of: What's wrong with this picture. (Reinz gasket in a Elring package.)
I actually had a phone call from a product manager at Elring in Der Fatherland. A very fruitful hour long conversation I had indeed. I made him aware of issues with this and other gaskets/seals over the years. I think it did some good?
He shipped me a case of VC gaskets and they paid me for the 3 that went bad.

This is also where I learned that (at the time) the genuine S54 gasket was made by Bruss. Not available on the aftermarket.
The reason for the Reinz gasket in the Elring package?: When companies run out of stock, it's very common for one company to borrow some to keep fulfillment.....
Check those 1/2 moons for a brand!
 

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Are those grommets that important that it’ll cause them to leak ?

The grommets are HALF of the job. The nuts that go over the grommets are limited as to how far you can tighten them down, owing to the length of the shoulder. So any compression onto the valve cover itself (then pushes on the gasket) is created by the rubber between the washer and the VC. The grommets age and compress over time. Limiting the amount of force being applied to the valve cover/gasket. YES the grommets are important!!

The brand I used was victor reinz which I believe is erling.

IMO Reinz = Garbage. Second only to URO. Definitely NOT Elring. Two completely different companies...
(NOT to be confused with Rein.)
I replaced my VC gasket with Victor Reinz about 180,000 miles ago, I am just now getting a little wetness around one of the edges. I'd say that's pretty good.
 

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I replaced my VC gasket with Victor Reinz about 180,000 miles ago, I am just now getting a little wetness around one of the edges. I'd say that's pretty good.
Quite possible.

I have to look at what brand parts I purchase/use differently than most. I don't work on 1 or 2 cars. I have all my customers, hundreds....
A) It's not worth ruining my reputation for $10 more profit.
B) There's nothing worse than having to do a job a second time, for FREE!
Reinz: Not here...
 

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the people’s mod
2004 330Ci 115k miles
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Just to add to the advice above, be sure to carefully inspect the valve cover itself for small hairline cracks.
It is quite common for these cracks to leak after you replace the VCG and drive you nuts!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I didn’t use any sealant at all. Am I supposed to be using it ?

I changed this back in 2016 which is when I didn’t know about FCP. I buy all my parts from them now and will buy the VCG as well.


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I can see that oil is leaking from the valve cover area
which area exactly? front/back / right side / left side(unlikely) / half moon area where some suggest sealant/
right side aluminum plate closer to the back...


Unfortunately I don’t think I replaced the rubber grommets from what I can remember
this is what I had purchased
if u used all u had purchased, looks like u replaced rubber grommets
 

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A small amount of sealant over the T joint where the vanos unit meets the cylinder head and the moons is all you need. More is definitely not better.

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