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      02-12-2018, 03:19 PM   #1
asiflicious
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VCG leak

What's up guys! So I've had a valve cover gasket leak for a few months now and I'm wondering if I'm risking anything by prolonging the repair. The leak was originally found when I was having my plugs and could replaced because of occasional misfires on cold starts. Two of the plug threads were found to be soaked in oil. The guy who was replacing them told me the valve cover gasket had a minor leak but that I should be fine for a while and he tightened the bolts. I later learned that you're not supposed to do that but thankfully (or maybe unfortunately?) he didn't crack the cover itself. Or at least I doubt he did because I had the car looked at by BMW a couple months later to get it repaired under my aftermarket warranty. Ended up not doing it because the warranty doesn't cover the gasket alone but it does cover the valve cover. I doubt BMW would have let $2k go like that. Okay but anyways, the car has been driving great ever since. No misfires, no codes, no low oil warnings or anything that would make me think something is wrong. Is there any reason why I would want to do the repair sooner rather than later? Am I risking any potential damage by prolonging the repair? Or do you guys think I'm fine waiting until I can combine the VCG replacement with another maintenance item in the same area (plugs, coils, injectors etc) when the time eventually comes to save on paying for labor twice?
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      02-13-2018, 01:29 AM   #2
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So you guys are just going to ignore me huh. I thought we were pals
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      02-13-2018, 03:51 AM   #3
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So you guys are just going to ignore me huh. I thought we were pals
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      02-13-2018, 08:59 AM   #4
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I'm not as knowledgeable as most on this specific car, but IMHO any leak has potential to cause issues. Lack of oil, oil soaking other components, a small leak turning into a big one. Also, a small leak can cost more to fix if you wait. Damage from the oil leaking can be considerable. If you pay close attention, you will likely be fine. Just make sure you clean the area thoroughly before you repair the leak.
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      02-13-2018, 02:15 PM   #5
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As long as you watch your oil level, and the leak remains minimal, it probably won't cause any harm. But if it gets worse, you might not be able to keep up, and oil could end up on your exhaust manifold, leading to smoke and possibly fire (uh-oh).
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      03-31-2018, 10:18 PM   #6
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As long as you watch your oil level, and the leak remains minimal, it probably won't cause any harm. But if it gets worse, you might not be able to keep up, and oil could end up on your exhaust manifold, leading to smoke and possibly fire (uh-oh).
Some dude I follow on Instagram had his 328i totaled after it caught on fire after he had the valve cover replaced. I'm guessing the shop fucked up big time. But it did scare me so far my car has been running like a champ even with the leak but I'm keeping a close eye on it
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      03-31-2018, 11:46 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by asiflicious View Post
Some dude I follow on Instagram had his 328i totaled after it caught on fire after he had the valve cover replaced. I'm guessing the shop fucked up big time. But it did scare me so far my car has been running like a champ even with the leak but I'm keeping a close eye on it
Wow!

Thatís crazy! Yeah, just make sure the oil stays away from the exhaust and turbos and you should be good for a little while longer. From what Iíve seen, it isnít too bad a fix, itís just a lot of little parts to disassemble and reassemble...
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      03-31-2018, 11:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by asiflicious View Post
Some dude I follow on Instagram had his 328i totaled after it caught on fire after he had the valve cover replaced. I'm guessing the shop fucked up big time. But it did scare me so far my car has been running like a champ even with the leak but I'm keeping a close eye on it
Wow!

That’s crazy! Yeah, just make sure the oil stays away from the exhaust and turbos and you should be good for a little while longer. From what I’ve seen, it isn’t too bad a fix, it’s just a lot of little parts to disassemble and reassemble...
I'm assuming I'd notice smoking from hood and blue smoke from the exhaust before any potential fires right?
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      03-31-2018, 11:57 PM   #9
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I'm assuming I'd notice smoking from hood and blue smoke from the exhaust before any potential fires right?
I dunno about blue smoke from the exhaust tips, but youíll definitely notice smoke from the hood. If itís a small leak, it should only smoke, I doubt a real fire would ever become of it unless oil was allowed to pool on the exhaust.

I found a pool of oil had leaked from my Oil Filter Housing and onto my accessory belt, which as soon as I started the car after sitting for a week, flung oil all over my engine bay...itís so shiny-looking now! Also, I made the mistake of putting some BoeShield T-9 on my header nuts, that was an embarassing stop light, to say the least, it was billowing smoke and stunk like hell, but nothing became of it because there was so little to actually burn.
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      04-01-2018, 12:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asiflicious View Post
I'm assuming I'd notice smoking from hood and blue smoke from the exhaust before any potential fires right?
I dunno about blue smoke from the exhaust tips, but you’ll definitely notice smoke from the hood. If it’s a small leak, it should only smoke, I doubt a real fire would ever become of it unless oil was allowed to pool on the exhaust.

I found a pool of oil had leaked from my Oil Filter Housing and onto my accessory belt, which as soon as I started the car after sitting for a week, flung oil all over my engine bay...it’s so shiny-looking now! Also, I made the mistake of putting some BoeShield T-9 on my header nuts, that was an embarassing stop light, to say the least, it was billowing smoke and stunk like hell, but nothing became of it because there was so little to actually burn.
The only times I ever notice the leak is when the car misfires on cylinder six during a cold start after sitting for a couple days from the oil accumulating in the spark plug well
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      04-01-2018, 12:06 AM   #11
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The only times I ever notice the leak is when the car misfires on cylinder six during a cold start after sitting for a couple days from the oil accumulating in the spark plug well
Ah, so itís an interior gasket leak! You may want to get this fixed, the oil could ruin your ignition coil after a while, but they arenít terribly expensive to replace, sooo...keep on keeping on
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      04-01-2018, 12:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asiflicious View Post
The only times I ever notice the leak is when the car misfires on cylinder six during a cold start after sitting for a couple days from the oil accumulating in the spark plug well
Ah, so it’s an interior gasket leak! You may want to get this fixed, the oil could ruin your ignition coil after a while, but they aren’t terribly expensive to replace, sooo...keep on keeping on
I'll wait until it fucks up the coils and then I'll do plugs, coils, and the gasket at the same time
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      04-01-2018, 09:28 AM   #13
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You know what the problem is... fix it! I did mine 2 weeks ago it wasnít that bad.
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      04-01-2018, 10:56 AM   #14
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Quote:
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Quote:
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Originally Posted by asiflicious View Post
The only times I ever notice the leak is when the car misfires on cylinder six during a cold start after sitting for a couple days from the oil accumulating in the spark plug well
Ah, so it's an interior gasket leak! You may want to get this fixed, the oil could ruin your ignition coil after a while, but they aren't terribly expensive to replace, sooo...keep on keeping on
I'll wait until it fucks up the coils and then I'll do plugs, coils, and the gasket at the same time
Hope it doesn't strand you too far from home...but that'd be my plan anyways
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      04-15-2018, 02:19 PM   #15
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You know what the problem is... fix it! I did mine 2 weeks ago it wasn't that bad.
I'm going to but I want to get it done at the same time as something else. I have a mechanic friend so it'll make it easier for both of us if I combine the repair with some other work
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