Sunday 31 May 2015

5 Series wing repaired!

With all the mechanical work on the E60 of late I would normally have relished a bit of body work to change the pace but, as the damage occurred at work and my company has several body shops at their disposal, I figured it was best to accept a free professional repair.

Not a bad job I must say. J Howarth's in Pensby, Wirral did the work. They are now officially part of Wallasey Fleet Hire and have recently renamed as such, but here they are on Yell - I would have to second the comments in the Yell review. This is where our more specialist jobs are sent to at work and I trust the guys will do a clean, thorough repair and look after my car, so I waited a couple of weeks to get it done there and it was worth it. The E60 turned out to be quite an involved fix, as ever. The wings are alloy, not steel, so the car had to be taken somewhere after prep to have a blob of TIG weld put in the split [below] before being ground, filled, primed, painted and lacquered. Never the less, the car was ready for me by the following afternoon. Due to the extra work required they couldn't stretch to sorting the scuff on the back bumper after all, so I will have to break out the T-cut, but I am no position to complain - the wing is indeed like new.

Wednesday 27 May 2015

E60 Diesel: Replace Turbo Waste-Gate [Actuator]

This is a pretty easy job and can be done with removing the turbo, exhaust-manifold or rocker cover.
  1. Remove the inlet duct to the air-filter housing. It's held by a T30-Torx screw at the front and just unclips from the housing.
  2. Remove the boost-pipe from the top of the turbo by removing the screw from the left side of where it joins to the turbo using a 10mm wrench, then loosening the right hand screw using a T30-Torx socket and rotating the collar clockwise until it can be pulled out of the turbo.
  3. Remove the other end of the boost-pipe from the left side of the intercooler by reaching from underneath with a flathead screwdriver and sliding the metal clip down. The pipe should pop the intercooler easily and be pulled out from above. [This can be done without fully removing the engine-undertrays].
  4. Gently slide the rubber vacuum-hose off the metal spout on the waste-gate.
  5. Remove the three screws holding the waste-gate to the turbo using a 10mm wrench. [There is just enough room down the left side of the engine to get a ring-spanner on, otherwise a ratchet with a short extension-bar may get them more easily].
  6. Push a cloth or some tissue roll down under the bottom of the waste-gate between the turbo inlet and exhaust wheels to stop the retaining-clip getting lost into the engine and slide the clip off the waste-gate arm using a long flat screwdriver. [There is just enough clearance to get an angle with the screwdriver and just about see the clip. The clip will probably have to be removed with a stick-magnet].
  7. Slide the waste-gate arm off the stud and remove it.
  8. Refit the new waste-gate as a reversal of above, being careful not to lose the retaining-clip during refitting. The clip may need holding in position with a stick-magnet as it is pushed down with a flat screwdriver.

Sunday 24 May 2015

E60: New engine tune-up Part 4 - Waste-gate + Pressure-converter.

After the last tune-up [here] the stifled boost remained. Up to about 2000rpm the power was ok, but after that, when the real boost is expected to come in, it wouldn't. Rev and noise would rise with no acceleration. All that exhaust gas was just escaping through an open waste-gate, signified by a constant 'dump-valve' style hiss. At this point i really got my head around the vacuum-actuated turbo setup and tested the vacuum-tank [3 in diagram] and each hose individually for leaks, finding nothing. In a last ditch attempt to try and get the E60 boosting again I replaced both the waste-gate [with the slightly shinier one from my old turbo] and the electronic pressure-converter that controls it [1 in diagram].

This finally gave some results. Boost is now back and the long drawn-out hissing has gone, though there is still a short gap in between low and high boost. If you are rolling slowly in 2nd or 3rd gear and plant the throttle, the car surges forward then hesitates with a hiss for a moment before full boost comes in and the hiss stops abruptly, however this is only noticeable when accelerating in this way. A slower rate of acceleration gives an almost unnoticeable transition to the point where full boost can be applied and the car pulls away. This is also true when cruising a bit faster in 2nd or 3rd, where the waste-gate has had time to shut and full boost acceleration is instant. This to me suggests there is still a vacuum problem and I will have to re-check the hoses going under the steering to the engine-mounts, as they're the only bits I haven't been over a dozen times. The car is useable at full boost now, so I know the new engine is running as it should and capable of giving the power I was used to before the troubles, but pulling away fast in 2nd from traffic lights is a bit long-winded and I find myself changing up to 4th pretty sharpish before I feel confident enough to grill it. Really though, how often do I need to pull away fast without waiting in gear for a second before doing so? Perhaps I'm asking too much...

The next engine jobs will be focused on smoothing the rough idle, though in the meantime I threw in a mixture of Cataclean and Wynn's Injector Cleaner to see if that helped - half of each bottle added to 30 litres of diesel twice. I'm sure it did some good to the engine, but apart from making it a bit peppier for a couple of weeks there was no improvement to the idling situation. If the vacuum problem is not to blame then one or more injectors could be failing. There may even be a problem with the DDE controller, though this is extremely unlikely.

Next jobs:
  • Redo smooth-running measurement.
  • Replace / recode injectors if necessary.
  • Check oil on rocker-cover. Is it leaking from 10mm injector-studs to head?
  • Re-check all vacuum-tubing and replace where possible.

Future things to do / buy:
  • Rear ball-joints / ball-joint tool. [Advisory on last MOT].
  • Swap glow-plug module.
  • Intake manifold ring profile-gaskets.
  • Rubber rear exhaust-hanger.

Sunday 10 May 2015

E60: New engine Tune Up Part 3 - Glow-plugs / EGR / more vacuum hoses...

  • Blank off swirl-flap vac-hose.
  • Replace EGR vac-hose with one that came with new engine.
  • Check wiring to GP module. (No replacement.)
  • Remove and clean EGR.
Boost was lacking and noisy again so I figured there was more vacuum-leak. Assuming the redundant swirl-flap diaphragm was to blame I set about removing that hose completely from the servo-hose T-piece and fitting a blank stopper from the new engine. While doing this I found the vac-hose to the EGR was snapped off at the nozzle. Classic.

Trouble codes:
  • All 6 glow-plugs no activation. Intermittent, but happened 31 times out of 40, all at the same times. I intended to swap the module for the one from my replacement engine, but couldn't find it amongst the parts so it mustn't have been included.
  • [3FF0] Air mass meter failure.
  • [4507] MAF controlled EGR flow too low. Both of these happened once around the same time as each other and have not happened since. Perhaps the snapped EGR vac-line could explain this.
  • [4B10] Smooth running controller, correction quantity too high. This was the most intriguing of the codes as it had registered 9 times. 
Smooth running controller measurement:

This measures the amount each injector has to provide each time it is fired and how much the ECU needs to meter them. The ideal correctional values are between -2.5mg and 100mg per stroke, so as you can see my measurement is indeed showing very high amounts of correction. [NOTE: The reading is in kJ, not mg as displayed! Autocom GDP just does this. I get a proper reading in this post with INPA -]. The reasons for this are faulty injectors, lack of cylinder compression and lack of flow to the EGR. At first glance it would appear injector 5 is giving no reading as there should be a correction value there, but the engine is running on all six cylinders therefore number 5 is firing. So what gives here? I started a thread on BMW Land [BMW Land is down for now sadly :(] with some damning results on injector 5, which I will have to investigate, play with the wiring etc. 

Another cause of low compression is a cracked / leaky exhaust-to-turbo manifold. This would also cause low gas flow to the EGR and stifle the amount of exhaust gas powering the turbo, explaining the boost problem. I will get someone to rev the engine as I feel round for a leak of hot gases, but if this turns out not to be the case then the only things left to do will be replace the waste-gate and/or pressure-convverter.
  • Check for pressure leak from exhaust-manifold.
  • Add injector cleaner and cataclean.
  • Investigate boost actuator / pressure converter and waste-gate.