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      05-16-2014, 10:52 AM   #1
blackpixi7
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Great...just great.

Where to begin. I bought an '08 135i in August '13 from a local Porsche dealer, with an expired factory warranty, and a little 30 day warranty from the dealer that covered small things. Cut to last month, I started to smell a strange odor in the cabin when the A/C was turned on. I don't drive the car often and I'm usually a 'windows down' kind of guy when I'm driving it, so I've never used the A/C very often during my ownership. Last week the New Jersey mugginess became unbearable so I turned on the A/C only to be blasted with the same pungent odor. Suspecting I needed a freon refill, I took the car to a local mechanic who recharged the system. Ahh, cold at last. Or so I thought. I got 3 days out of the freon recharge. 3 days. To make a long story short, I took the car back to the same mechanic, who caught a whiff of the odor I described to him once he sat in the car, and immediately suspected that freon was leaking into the cabin via the evaporator. The Fucking evaporator. And I have no warranty to cover it.

So, to explain why I made this thread, I'm basically looking for any owners who've ever tackled such a job on their own - replacing the evaporator. I understand it involves removing the dashboard among many other things, and as much as I'd love to just send it off to the dealer or a shop to fix it, I just haven't the money at this time. I'm fairly mechanically inclined, having worked on GM LS motors, including a bottom end rebuild of an LS1.


This is the only thread I've found on 1addicts that really mentions replacing the evaporator. Seems it's a fairly rare, yet expensive issue.

http://www.1addicts.com/forums/showt...=558834&page=2
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      05-16-2014, 11:39 AM   #2
mike@x-ph.com
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Good luck finding someone local to help you.
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      05-16-2014, 11:51 AM   #3
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Hi Black: I did it on my '95 318ti. It was a huge job, at least a week, and I kept driving it. I bypassed the heater for the week. It was fun watching the engine while I drove with no dashboard.
Jack
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      05-16-2014, 11:59 AM   #4
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You might want to go to real oem and see the parts explosion diagram for the dash. It could give you a clue how difficult it will be to uncover the evaporator. You could also search the DIY section of this and the 3 series section to see if anybody posted something for this or other extensive dash work.
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      05-16-2014, 12:13 PM   #5
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Evaporator is not a fun job, add some dye to the system and run your ac to see if there are any leaks elsewhere before doing the job.
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      05-16-2014, 12:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike@x-ph.com View Post
Good luck finding someone local to help you.
Thanks Mike
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      05-16-2014, 12:33 PM   #7
blackpixi7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikijack View Post
Hi Black: I did it on my '95 318ti. It was a huge job, at least a week, and I kept driving it. I bypassed the heater for the week. It was fun watching the engine while I drove with no dashboard.
Jack
Yeah, it is huge. My dad thinks I'm crazy for wanting to attempt it. A part of me wants to just recharge it and immediately trade it in.
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      05-16-2014, 12:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowbudgethero View Post
Evaporator is not a fun job, add some dye to the system and run your ac to see if there are any leaks elsewhere before doing the job.
Interestingly enough, on the 3rd day when all the freon had been exhausted, I noticed the rubber grip on my navigation and radio volume knobs felt strangely sticky. The car is usually clean and I'm usually anal about keeping it that way, so despite it being something rather small, I noticed it immediately and can't help suspecting that perhaps the freon created a mild glazed coating on certain rubber textured surfaces in the car? Any idea how I'd go about adding dye? Type? Or is a job better left to my mechanic? Thanks for the insight.
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      05-16-2014, 03:52 PM   #9
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Damn too bad you're not close by.. It's not something simple for someone who hasn't done anything similar before.. quite involving. I've done dozens and dozens of them and have it down to around 2hrs. If you find a good write-up somewhere that goes step by step, and have access to an A/C machine i'd say go for it.
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      05-16-2014, 04:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by e36addict View Post
Damn too bad you're not close by.. It's not something simple for someone who hasn't done anything similar before.. quite involving. I've done dozens and dozens of them and have it down to around 2hrs. If you find a good write-up somewhere that goes step by step, and have access to an A/C machine i'd say go for it.
2 hours?! You're exaggerating right? Could you elaborate more on the process of what's involved perhaps?
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      05-16-2014, 05:35 PM   #11
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You might check with your local BMW dealer, they might good will part or all of the repair. On the early '08 and '09's I have seen a few guys post that their evaps failed.

IF you do go with an indi shop or decide to change it yourself... you might look into Griffiths - they are experts at AC parts and service for BMW's and Porsche's.

http://www.griffiths.com/
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      05-16-2014, 08:51 PM   #12
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Since you are in NJ, call Steve Vicari.
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      05-16-2014, 09:39 PM   #13
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http://workshop-manuals.com/bmw/1_se...ng_evaporator/
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      05-16-2014, 10:13 PM   #14
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Have an Idea i wanna float to blackpixi7.

Don't know how much this is gonna cost ya(dealer vs indy) That needs to be determined.

Past this step? You need to give a PM to e36addict
Yes, one lives in NJ and other lives in TX.

blackpixi7 you agree to fly 36addict up to Newark(morning arrival flight)

You pick him up at the airport, take him to where the car is, e36addict does his magic in 2-4hrs
Pay him X amount(agreed upon) drop him off at Newark airport to fly back to TX in an afternoon 5ish flight...........BAM!!!!

e36addict: you get to fly to NJ for half a day, make some extra cash on the side.......everyone is happy........WIN, WIN in IMHO
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Last edited by Cuz5150; 05-17-2014 at 12:20 PM.
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      05-16-2014, 11:09 PM   #15
blackpixi7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cuz5150 View Post
Have an Idea i wanna float to blackpixi7.

Don't know how much this is gonna cost ya(dealer vs indy) That needs to be determined.

Past this step? You need to give a PM to e36addict
Yes, one lives in NJ and other lives in TX.

blackpixi7 you agree to fly 36addict up to Newark(morning arrival flight)

You pick him up at the airport, take him to were the car is, e36addict does his magic in 2-4hrs
Pay him X amount(agreed upon) drop him off at Newark airport to fly back to TX in an afternoon 5ish flight...........BAM!!!!

e36addict: you get to fly to NJ for half a day, make some extra cash on the side.......everyone is happy........WIN, WIN in IMHO
As ludicrous as it sounds, doing just that may be cheaper than what the dealer wants to repair the car.
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      05-17-2014, 09:15 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackpixi7 View Post
As ludicrous as it sounds, doing just that may be cheaper than what the dealer wants to repair the car.
Ludicrous.........Maybe
Having spend 20yrs on the car forums, I have seen this way too many times believe it or not. Expert work is worth its weight in gold. In your case, removing the dash is a extreme pITA. Having a person that has done it dozens of times...that's the break you are looking for. BTW, when i first got my 04 M3 3yrs ago and needed a valve adjustment, i had guy from up state NY drive down to S NJ and do the work in my garage for a 1/4 of the cost the dealership charges. This guy had done about 30 valve adjustments, his work and speed, was impeccable.
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Last edited by Cuz5150; 05-17-2014 at 03:09 PM.
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      05-17-2014, 11:21 AM   #17
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Haha i'm being serious.. On average i'd say 2-3hrs depending on what else comes up. But my record with music in the ear and no distractions was 1hr 35min on an E90 sedan. Good stuff
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      05-17-2014, 12:07 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by e36addict View Post
Haha i'm being serious.. On average i'd say 2-3hrs depending on what else comes up. But my record with music in the ear and no distractions was 1hr 35min on an E90 sedan. Good stuff
Any tips to share? I do an E90 in about 6 hours just taking my time, mostly by the book instructions. Of course I claim about 12 hours even though the warranty time is 8.

OP - I don't recommend doing this job in your garage.
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      05-17-2014, 12:47 PM   #19
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I replaced the condenser in my 1991 300zx myself. It was a pain in the ass. I labeled everything, took pix and took my time. It was a winter project, and took about a month start/finish. I took my time, but I did it myself.
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      05-17-2014, 02:09 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dackelone
You might check with your local BMW dealer, they might good will part or all of the repair. On the early '08 and '09's I have seen a few guys post that their evaps failed.

IF you do go with an indi shop or decide to change it yourself... you might look into Griffiths - they are experts at AC parts and service for BMW's and Porsche's.

http://www.griffiths.com/
2nd
This is a known issue. I've had mine replaced 3 times under warranty. This last one they used a new p/n and it's holding so far.
I'd at least give it a try.
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      05-17-2014, 05:20 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Silenus View Post
Any tips to share? I do an E90 in about 6 hours just taking my time, mostly by the book instructions. Of course I claim about 12 hours even though the warranty time is 8.

OP - I don't recommend doing this job in your garage.
I think one of the best tricks I found is to not remove the metal cage from the car.. way too many wires and crap mounted to, around, and through it. I just unbolt it and swing it toward the driver side, lay it over the seats, then you can pull the evaporator case out through the passenger side.
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      05-18-2014, 09:19 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cuz5150
Have an Idea i wanna float to blackpixi7.

Don't know how much this is gonna cost ya(dealer vs indy) That needs to be determined.

Past this step? You need to give a PM to e36addict
Yes, one lives in NJ and other lives in TX.

blackpixi7 you agree to fly 36addict up to Newark(morning arrival flight)

You pick him up at the airport, take him to where the car is, e36addict does his magic in 2-4hrs
Pay him X amount(agreed upon) drop him off at Newark airport to fly back to TX in an afternoon 5ish flight...........BAM!!!!

e36addict: you get to fly to NJ for half a day, make some extra cash on the side.......everyone is happy........WIN, WIN in IMHO
I think a few rippers at Rutt's Hutt might seal the deal!

http://www.roadfood.com/Restaurant/O...1362/rutts-hut





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