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      02-02-2019, 04:53 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunderguts View Post
I'm worried about just spraying blindly up the drain hose. Has anyone had any bad experiences doing this? I don't want the foam overflowing and running out anywhere.
Well.. thats the whole point of these cleaning foams... to soak the evaporator and clean out all the mold inside of the HVAC box. Doing it from under the car is safe - bc thats how its done in most shops. Of course you can also do it from the topside too(after the blower motor!).

IF your car is really bad, you might need a second can and spray down the AC vents. But that's pretty rare. Try to get up in the evaporator box for best results. Maybe you can remove the glove box & blower motor and spray down in there that way. ?

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      02-03-2019, 12:38 PM   #46
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Follow-up on VC/VCG fix:
When they started pulling parts, shop found my small oil leak was from the Valvetronic motor gasket and not the VCG, also closer inspection showed no cracks visible on outside of VC and no leaks at VCG. At $56 instead of $940, I'm fine with that
On the minus side, it seems to have had minimal effect on my car's smell. It's more of a "deisel-y" kind of smell to me, not "musty" like I expect of mold/mildew, and definitely more sour than sweet, so I don't think it's coolant.
I'll try the ozone generator in the cabin anyway, just to be sure whatever's in there is dead - and will try running the car & AC while it's starting up - never though of that for my E30 but seem so obvious now that it's mentioned in this thread.
May also try that foaming stuff up the drain hose. And checking the drain hose to be sure it's connected... maybe do the check before I do the foam... first things first
Dackel thanks for the photos, definitely shows me what to look out for. Those cracks on the inside look like how I expect a "well-used" engine's VC to break down over time.
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      02-03-2019, 01:10 PM   #47
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I have 2 cars, my 08 128i and my winter beater. I always ran one of those 12v cig light air purifiers in the BMW and now that its winter i switched it to the beater. For the little while i was driving both cars i noticed the BMW has kinda like a tangy mold smell to it thats very unpleasant but dissipates quickly if i drove with the windows down but always comes back. any ideas?

Edit: is it also worth mentioning my AC is only cold on the passenger side and gets only cool on the driver
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      02-03-2019, 04:07 PM   #48
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I tried both ways to access the evaporator this morning and I recommend removing the blower motor. Believe it or not, the blower motor is super easy to remove. Once you've removed the panel under the dash, all you do is pull on a tab and twist the blower motor. I had it out in about 5 minutes. You can then run your hose and evaporator cleaner from the top under the air filter or bottom under the dash. I went through under the dash.

It was easier for me to remove the blower motor than it was to remove the end of the drain pipe because of how cramped it is down there. You have to remove the end of the drain hose because it has a sharp 90 bend and your cleaner hose will kink. I also could only jam the hose up so far before it hit something. I finally gave up and just plugged the hose with my finger while I emptied half the can as far up as it would go.

There's another important reason to remove the blower motor. Mine was filthy! I'm not just talking dirt, but metal dust from the bushing wearing down. I blew it out with an air compressor and oiled the shaft. It spins more freely now and won't die as soon I hope. Given the ease of removing the blower motor, I recommend that method.
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      02-04-2019, 04:05 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunderguts View Post
I tried both ways to access the evaporator this morning and I recommend removing the blower motor. Believe it or not, the blower motor is super easy to remove. Once you've removed the panel under the dash, all you do is pull on a tab and twist the blower motor. I had it out in about 5 minutes. You can then run your hose and evaporator cleaner from the top under the air filter or bottom under the dash. I went through under the dash.

It was easier for me to remove the blower motor than it was to remove the end of the drain pipe because of how cramped it is down there. You have to remove the end of the drain hose because it has a sharp 90 bend and your cleaner hose will kink. I also could only jam the hose up so far before it hit something. I finally gave up and just plugged the hose with my finger while I emptied half the can as far up as it would go.

There's another important reason to remove the blower motor. Mine was filthy! I'm not just talking dirt, but metal dust from the bushing wearing down. I blew it out with an air compressor and oiled the shaft. It spins more freely now and won't die as soon I hope. Given the ease of removing the blower motor, I recommend that method.

Also... while your in there... be sure to check out the electrical wires on the blower motor itself. They often are burnt or melted. There is a recall out on the three series - because the wires can melt together and burn the car to the ground. I think it might be a recall for the 1er's as well in the states.

some pics from 1Addicts... FSU(Final Stage Unit or Resistor) on the blower motor...
Name:  blower motor wiring e9x  1618-1.jpg
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Name:  blower motor wiring e9x  1619-2.jpg
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Name:  blower motor wiring e9x  1620-1.jpg
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You want to make sure your blower motor doesn't look like these pics...

It's probably not a bad idea to replace your pollen filter(located under the hood) too while cleaning out the HVAC system.

Dackel
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      02-04-2019, 04:21 PM   #50
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I think the blower motor itself may be contributing to the problem. I was surprised how much metal dust was in there. Even after I blew mine out, it still didn't spin all that freely. If the bushings seize up that motor will overheat and melt your wiring.
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      02-04-2019, 05:41 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunderguts View Post
I think the blower motor itself may be contributing to the problem. I was surprised how much metal dust was in there. Even after I blew mine out, it still didn't spin all that freely. If the bushings seize up that motor will overheat and melt your wiring.
Yep. Updating your blower motor and FSU is money well spent. I don't think the blower motor is even that expensive($150 Blower + $84 FSU)...


https://www.fcpeuro.com/BMW-parts/13...s=blower+motor


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      02-04-2019, 07:09 PM   #52
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Pulling blower motor and getting hvac cleaner foam in there is probably next for me. Ozone generator running 2 hr in cabin (with blower running on recirculate for 45 min), plus 1.5 days sealed up to settle, smell is better but still definitely there
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      02-05-2019, 03:27 PM   #53
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Here are a couple of good DIY videos on removing the blower motor...







0:45 damaged blower motor wires melted...



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      04-14-2019, 03:09 AM   #54
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Adventures in cleaning your evaporator

I'm going to add my experiences here rather than start a new thread. My car came from Oklahoma and I can only assume that the previous owner ran the car with the A/C on recirculate non-stop because the mildew smell was awful. I've tried to clean it before, but when I fired up my A/C a week ago, it smelled worse than ever. This is after I treated it with Nextzett Klima-Clean and sprayed two 1-ounce bottles of Frigi-Fresh through the intake. I decided to do a more thorough job this time.

Like before, I inserted a tube for the Klima-Clean as far up the drain tube as it would go and plugged it up with my finger. I emptied about two-thirds of a can up there. Here is the interesting thing: I had an endoscope through the main opening where I removed the blower. I didn't see a single sign of the foam. The drain is on the front of the evaporator, so spraying through the drain tube evidently only coats the front. It does not penetrate through to the rear.

This is what I saw:


For this reason, I would say that it's absolutely imperative that you spray both sides of the evaporator. It also allows you to clean your blower motor. I cleaned mine the last time I did this so it looked pretty good, but this time I oiled both motor bushings with Tri-Flow. It does make the shaft spin a little more freely. I sprayed the back side of the evaporator twice and then after about 20 minutes, I also pumped some distilled water in there to wash out what was left of the Klima-Clean. Last time my A/C smelled of Klima-Clean for nearly a month.

If you're thinking about going though the front vent, don't bother. I checked that out as well. The vent pulls off pretty easily and you get this view:

The vent closes soon after you turn the car off which I think is one reason mildew builds up in there. You have about three minutes to work before it closes. I put my endoscope down the circled area and found this:


I'm about 95% sure that you're seeing the heater core. It's too clean to be the evaporator. In short, don't bother trying to go through the vent because nothing will get through the heater core. Spraying anything down there is a total waste of time. It won't reach the evaporator and will only gum up your vent motors.

Tomorrow I'm going to buy a cleaner "bomb" and set it off while the system recirculates. That should kill anything in the vents themselves. If this doesn't rid my car of mildew smell, nothing will.
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      05-18-2019, 11:04 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunderguts View Post
I'm going to add my experiences here rather than start a new thread. My car came from Oklahoma and I can only assume that the previous owner ran the car with the A/C on recirculate non-stop because the mildew smell was awful. I've tried to clean it before, but when I fired up my A/C a week ago, it smelled worse than ever. This is after I treated it with Nextzett Klima-Clean and sprayed two 1-ounce bottles of Frigi-Fresh through the intake. I decided to do a more thorough job this time.

Like before, I inserted a tube for the Klima-Clean as far up the drain tube as it would go and plugged it up with my finger. I emptied about two-thirds of a can up there. Here is the interesting thing: I had an endoscope through the main opening where I removed the blower. I didn't see a single sign of the foam. The drain is on the front of the evaporator, so spraying through the drain tube evidently only coats the front. It does not penetrate through to the rear.

This is what I saw:


For this reason, I would say that it's absolutely imperative that you spray both sides of the evaporator. It also allows you to clean your blower motor. I cleaned mine the last time I did this so it looked pretty good, but this time I oiled both motor bushings with Tri-Flow. It does make the shaft spin a little more freely. I sprayed the back side of the evaporator twice and then after about 20 minutes, I also pumped some distilled water in there to wash out what was left of the Klima-Clean. Last time my A/C smelled of Klima-Clean for nearly a month.

If you're thinking about going though the front vent, don't bother. I checked that out as well. The vent pulls off pretty easily and you get this view:

The vent closes soon after you turn the car off which I think is one reason mildew builds up in there. You have about three minutes to work before it closes. I put my endoscope down the circled area and found this:


I'm about 95% sure that you're seeing the heater core. It's too clean to be the evaporator. In short, don't bother trying to go through the vent because nothing will get through the heater core. Spraying anything down there is a total waste of time. It won't reach the evaporator and will only gum up your vent motors.

Tomorrow I'm going to buy a cleaner "bomb" and set it off while the system recirculates. That should kill anything in the vents themselves. If this doesn't rid my car of mildew smell, nothing will.
Any update?
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      05-19-2019, 01:18 AM   #56
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Any update?
Yeah...it still stinks.

This is ridiculous. It's better now, but still not gone. It's the same routine as always. The air smells fine when I turn it on and fine when I turn it off. It's only after a minute that it starts to stink after I turn off the air and just let the fan run. I set off one of the Nextzett bombs already and it helped a little more, but still has not eradicated that smell after the AC is switched off. I have a second one. I'll do one more and see how that goes.
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      05-19-2019, 08:48 AM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunderguts View Post
Yeah...it still stinks.

This is ridiculous. It's better now, but still not gone. It's the same routine as always. The air smells fine when I turn it on and fine when I turn it off. It's only after a minute that it starts to stink after I turn off the air and just let the fan run. I set off one of the Nextzett bombs already and it helped a little more, but still has not eradicated that smell after the AC is switched off. I have a second one. I'll do one more and see how that goes.
I have same issue, may be fan needs to be disinfected since odor comes when fan is on?
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      08-01-2019, 04:15 PM   #58
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Sorry this video is in German... but you get the idea on how this product works to clean out smells in the AC system...

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