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Default Video showing "clouds of smoke" from exhaust while coming to a stop. - 07-30-2014, 10:28 AM

Hey guys,

After installing my AR *** I noticed the smoke coming from the exhaust like many other N54 owners. Although sometimes my smoking seemed excessive, the written descriptions from other members were right in-line with what I was experiencing: when coasting off throttle, in traffic, etc.

Although I never searched for a video with great effort, I never stumbled on one showing what it looks like. I happen to have one so I thought I would share.

Most of the stories I read linked the smoking to high-flowing *** and when the oem units were reinstalled, the problems stopped. This makes sense as the cats would likely burn off a lot of engine vapor but it is extremely unlikely for it to be the root of the problem.

After further inspection I noticed a considerable amount of oil leaking from the charge side of my rear turbo which can be seen in the pics below, also with the photo of the *********, notice how the rear DP is much darker inside.

It looked like a bad turbo seal to my amateur eyes so last week I dropped my car off at BMW Fremont to milk the last few days of my CPO warranty (it ends today 7/30). So far the service adviser notified me that they have replaced the valve cover gasket, that was 2 days ago, so fingers crossed they smoking persists and I will get 2 new snails out of the visit; timing would be impeccable if it works out like this. I will update this when I get my car back.

Hope this helps someone!
Evan


Here is the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRGb4rJUjL4












N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC

Last edited by ucsbwsr; 03-26-2015 at 07:15 AM..
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Island Road Island Road is offline
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Default 08-05-2014, 04:36 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ucsbwsr
Hey guys,

After installing my AR *** I noticed the smoke coming from the exhaust like many other N54 owners. Although sometimes my smoking seemed excessive, the written descriptions from other members were right in-line with what I was experiencing: when coasting off throttle, in traffic, etc.

Although I never searched for a video with great effort, I never stumbled on one showing what it looks like. I happen to have one so I thought I would share.

Most of the stories I read linked the smoking to high-flowing *** and when the oem units were reinstalled, the problems stopped. This makes sense as the cats would likely burn off a lot of engine vapor but it is extremely unlikely for it to be the root of the problem.

After further inspection I noticed a considerable amount of oil leaking from the charge side of my rear turbo which can be seen in the pics below, also with the photo of the *********, notice how the rear DP is much darker inside.

It looked like a bad turbo seal to my amateur eyes so last week I dropped my car off at BMW Fremont to milk the last few days of my CPO warranty (it ends today 7/30). So far the service adviser notified me that they have replaced the valve cover gasket, that was 2 days ago, so fingers crossed they smoking persists and I will get 2 new snails out of the visit; timing would be impeccable if it works out like this. I will update this when I get my car back.

Hope this helps someone!
Evan
Hey Evans,

I am going though the exact same thing just on the 335i but at times with the 535xi. I do notice some smoke on the 5 but I still have the secondary cats installed so its not so much, new upgraded turbos soon so guessing that will correct the issue. Have you found out with the issue as yet? Let me know how it goes, I am curious as to the outcome. Right now I can control the smoke if I keep the revs at 1k.

What I have done to try and correct the issue.
Replaced valve cover gasket.
Replaced both oil cooler gaskets.
Installed RB PCV valve
New oem PCV hose
Front turbo was smoking (Replaced CHAR with a working unit from Rob)

Replacing the CHAR did correct my front turbo smoking but after this the rear started doing the exact same thing. Right now thinking of going ST or upgraded twins.

Thread of Trouble Shooting
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1012752

Video


Last edited by Island Road; 08-06-2014 at 06:18 AM..
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Default 08-06-2014, 12:33 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Island Road

Hey Evans,

I am going though the exact same thing just on the 335i but at times with the 535xi. I do notice some smoke on the 5 but I still have the secondary cats installed so its not so much, new upgraded turbos soon so guessing that will correct the issue. Have you found out with the issue as yet? Let me know how it goes, I am curious as to the outcome.
Well, the dealer was making me jump through hoops because I had aftermarket parts. I was going back and forth with my service advisor and foreman to make sure "we play by the rules" with BMW, in the end they needed stock ********* on before they could take action on the smoking. I told them the cats would likely mask the smoking, in addition the exhaust system should have little to no influence on oil leaking in the engine, the foreman agreed and then said his hands were tied as he wasn't comfortable going through with a possible turbo replacement on a car with aftermarket parts, even though we openly agreed that the parts had no influence on the oil.

As a nail in the coffin, the last out of 4 trips to this dealer took over a week and my warranty expired. I was hoping to get my car back in time to make some final part-swaps to appease the dealer, no luck.

After all my research on this, I bet it is some leaking valve sleeves, which is far worse that a turbo seal IMO. When I have some more time I may replace the CHRA on my rear turbo just to exclude that from the possible causes. Thankfully the rear turbo is much more accessible than the front (my front CHRA was replaced a few months ago and it was not fun). Just as you I sourced a used CHRA from RB.

As with many others who have suffered from this smoking with a full ***-less exhaust, I thought about throwing some 100 cell race cats in there but after talking to the guy at my local muffler shop, nothing kills cats faster than oil. So I am not sure where to go from here. Thankfully there is no drop in performance, noticeable increase in oil consumption, or codes being thrown. Until the issue gets worse I will probably let it be, I mean there are probably quiet a few N54s out there unknowingly with the same problem. When it is time to take action I will replace the rear CHRA and if that doesn't do the trick, I will look into dropping $2,500 for new valve sleeves.

Hope this helps,
Evan


N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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Island Road Island Road is offline
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Default 08-06-2014, 06:35 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ucsbwsr
Well, the dealer was making me jump through hoops because I had aftermarket parts. I was going back and forth with my service advisor and foreman to make sure "we play by the rules" with BMW, in the end they needed stock ********* on before they could take action on the smoking. I told them the cats would likely mask the smoking, in addition the exhaust system should have little to no influence on oil leaking in the engine, the foreman agreed and then said his hands were tied as he wasn't comfortable going through with a possible turbo replacement on a car with aftermarket parts, even though we openly agreed that the parts had no influence on the oil.

As a nail in the coffin, the last out of 4 trips to this dealer took over a week and my warranty expired. I was hoping to get my car back in time to make some final part-swaps to appease the dealer, no luck.

After all my research on this, I bet it is some leaking valve sleeves, which is far worse that a turbo seal IMO. When I have some more time I may replace the CHRA on my rear turbo just to exclude that from the possible causes. Thankfully the rear turbo is much more accessible than the front (my front CHRA was replaced a few months ago and it was not fun). Just as you I sourced a used CHRA from RB.

As with many others who have suffered from this smoking with a full ***-less exhaust, I thought about throwing some 100 cell race cats in there but after talking to the guy at my local muffler shop, nothing kills cats faster than oil. So I am not sure where to go from here. Thankfully there is no drop in performance, noticeable increase in oil consumption, or codes being thrown. Until the issue gets worse I will probably let it be, I mean there are probably quiet a few N54s out there unknowingly with the same problem. When it is time to take action I will replace the rear CHRA and if that doesn't do the trick, I will look into dropping $2,500 for new valve sleeves.

Hope this helps,
Evan

Thanks for the update, I have actually gotten the same response from other people that it could be the leaking valve sleeves as well but I really don't think it's that. I have gone though the same thing with my dealership trying to have the turbos replaced but because of my mods they were not going to budge so i finally put the stock DP back on and than they told me my WG rattle was normal...great.

The front CHRA was no fun at all that water pump is a PITA to deal with. Did they also find what was causing that oil leak or was the from the valve cover gasket? Did this smoking start when you replaced the front turbo CHAR? The same thing happened to me when I replaced the CHAR my smoking went to the rear turbo. I spoke to Rob about this and we think both turbos were bad and just replacing it with a working CHAR exposed the weak link in the system aka the rear turbo.

I have tons of power, running E30/93 and car pulls amazing. Been checking my oil consumption and so far I don't see any evidence of major oil loss from the indicator. I would do what you suggested at first, replacing the rear CHAR and seeing if that corrects the problem. If you are interested in upgraded twins that should offer between 550-600whp send me a PM and I can share more details with you.

Dan
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Island Road Island Road is offline
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Default 08-19-2014, 04:39 PM

Any update on this?
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Default 08-19-2014, 04:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Island Road
Any update on this?
On my end not really. I am still yet to take action, it is smoking intermittently but not as bad as it was before. I will continue to doing my best to observe when it happens and follow it's progress.

My car is running very strong and there has been no abnormal oil consumption. My old E39 M5 would absolutely blow through oil, so I am a little desensitized. I would have no real concerns if the engine asked to be topped off with oil, and it is yet to do that.

Evan


N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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Default 03-25-2015, 06:35 PM

Update:

I replace my complete valve cover, while I was at it I did my spark plugs. 2 weeks ago I did my coils (all 6) as I was getting some misfires from a weak coil and just replaced all of them.

I can report that replacing the valve cover DOES NOT help this issue, it is exactly the same as before.

At the rate things are going my turbos will replaced with RBs and we will see if that helps at all but the symptoms are pointing more towards bad valve sleeves than turbo seals but I may be completely wrong as I am just speculating and don't have a strong mechanical background, this was the first time I have the valve cover off a car.

I will continue to update this as things progress. There have been multiple people tell me that smoke like this is normal for a N54 with "unrestricted" exhaust, it still seems excessive to me.

Cylinder 5 spark plug was looking pretty rough, there was also significantly more build up in the valve relative to the others. So I will keep that in mind. I plan on walnut blasting the valves myself in the very near future so hopefully I can collect more data.

Evan





N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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Default 03-25-2015, 07:15 PM

Guys ive been through all the exact same measures and even looked up in my engine when I had the turbos off and didnt see any signs of oil. I replaced everything and even done a compression test and all was good. After all that its a little better but still smokes/you can smell oil. So at this point ive just accepted its going to smoke on coming to a stop etc.


07 E92 MT RB Turbos-600whp
08 E82 Built engine/trans Speedtech ST 6466
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Default 03-25-2015, 08:09 PM

After seeing your list of mods, I plan on taking my car to where you are (minus meth) so I appreciate the feedback even if it is deflating.

Like I said previously, engine runs really strong and oil consumption is normal but I REALLY don't like the smoke. Mainly because I hate the way the 6AT operates in D, S is way better for throttle response and theatrics. While in D I will only get smoke while coasting down a long decline (like coming down a mountain), in S I will get smoke every nearly every time I come to a stop, the difference is significant. With my desire to drive in S over D for driveability reasons this drives me crazy. Do you notice the same D-S difference with smoking?

I am tempted to trow some 100cell race cats in there just to alleviate the smoke, this is what I had in my E39 M5 and I didn't get any smoke but drank a 1L of oil for every 2 tanks of gas which was crazy.

Evan


N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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E90Ryan E90Ryan is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 05:28 AM

I had a smoking issue before after I put on my dp's also. Swapped the turbo's out and now good as new. A leaky valve cover gasket wouldn't effect this since it's coming out of the exhaust, so it's somewhere internal or in the turbo's; VC isn't a gasket for the combustion chamber. I also have had the same oil leak issue however since I've got my car. There's numerous drip spots and even wet spots like you posted but haven't figured out the cause yet. Strange thing is, oil level doesn't appear to be effected much.
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Default 03-26-2015, 07:22 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by E90Ryan
I had a smoking issue before after I put on my dp's also. Swapped the turbo's out and now good as new. A leaky valve cover gasket wouldn't effect this since it's coming out of the exhaust, so it's somewhere internal or in the turbo's; VC isn't a gasket for the combustion chamber. I also have had the same oil leak issue however since I've got my car. There's numerous drip spots and even wet spots like you posted but haven't figured out the cause yet. Strange thing is, oil level doesn't appear to be effected much.
Yea I realize now that it wouldn't be the gasket, I have tried to edit the subject of this thread to no avail, maybe the mods can help change it, it should read:

"Video showing Clouds of smoke from exhaust while coming to a stop"


Anyway, I replaced the valve cover thinking there may be something internally with the PCV valve housing, but then again I have the RB PCV and everything seemed normal. My BMS OCC had maybe 50ml of oil in it from maybe 10,000 miles of use IIRC.

Does anyone know what are the telling signs of bad valve sleeves? The engine with the valve cover removed is fresh in my mind and I will also be examining the valves soon. I will search around in the meantime. Thanks.

Evan


N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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Cerbera Cerbera is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 08:38 AM

I think if it was the valve stem seals you would have smoke on start up from where the oil has passed the seal whilst the engine was stopped.

I also have a lot of blue smoke on overrun/deceleration and then when followed by light throttle which I believe is the turbo seals as the turbines speed changes accordingly with throttle use. Mine only smokes once the oil is up to working temp never from cold.
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Default 03-26-2015, 08:50 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cerbera
I think if it was the valve stem seals you would have smoke on start up from where the oil has passed the seal whilst the engine was stopped.

I also have a lot of blue smoke on overrun/deceleration and then when followed by light throttle which I believe is the turbo seals as the turbines speed changes accordingly with throttle use. Mine only smokes once the oil is up to working temp never from cold.
Sounds in-line with my symptoms. If I get in on over run it may linger for a bit while stopped, sometimes putting in N and giving a couple revs to 3-4k will clear the oil from the system.

If it is in fact the turbo seals the RBs should take car of that!

Thanks for the input,
Evan


N54 Powered M5 Wagon:
- M5 Driveshaft, M5 LSD, M5 Axles, M5 Brakes, M5 Rear Suspension
- M5 Front End, M5 skirts, M5 Mirrors, M-Tech Rep Rear
- KW V3, RD Sport Sways, UR Strut Braces, Forgestar F14 SDC
- Manual Trans Swap, MFactory SMFW, Spec Stg 3+ Clutch, UUC SSK
- EOS Port Injection Manifold, Fuel-It: Stg 2 LPFP +Lines +Ethanol Sensor
- JB4, Hexon RR550s, Custom Inlets, AR ***, 3" Exhaust, VRSF 7" IC, ER CP, Tial BOV, RB Ext. PCV, BMS OCC
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Cerbera Cerbera is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 09:28 AM

Have you checked the turbo to intercooler pipe to see if there is much oil inside? mine had nothing more than a light film that you would expect and there is no oil in the charge pipe but when I looked in the DP's they were very black/sooty which I believe is from the oil being burn off inside them from the turbos.
I've also replaced the rocker cover gasket, PCV valve, PCV hose, compression & leakdown test etc.
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E90Ryan E90Ryan is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 09:28 AM

I also had blue smoke at idle, would disappear when giving it throttle, but smoke in between shifts as well.
http://youtu.be/_13lNcZ6Xrs
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Cerbera Cerbera is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 09:33 AM

I found this which helps explain why some turbo seals leak and it makes sense to me.

"I understand the frustration that turbo oil seal leakage can cause. Given such, I wanted to take some time to explain how the seals in a turbocharger works and why they sometimes leak oil.

The seals in almost all turbos today are piston ring seals. They look like piston rings that are compressed when they are installed to leave minimal gap between the ends of the rings and around the rings. This forms a torturous path for the oil to prevent leakage into the air passage. Most performance turbos use only a single piston ring on the compressor and turbine sides because they do drag the rotation of the turbo which reduces mechanical efficiency. In applications sensitive to oil leakage for emissions, etc. it is not uncommon for 2 piston rings to be used on both the compressor and turbine sides.

On the compressor side, generally there is some kind of oil splitter which throws oil away from the seal as it is spinning. Because the piston rings and the splitter are dynamic seals, when the turbo is spinning faster, the better the seal operates.

The oil leak is driven by pressure, like any other fluid flow. When the oil pressure inside the center housing of the turbo is higher than the air pressure outside of the seal, the oil wants to travel outside to the air passage. The air that is holding the oil back on the compressor side is the compressor outlet pressure and for the turbine side, it is the turbine inlet pressure. That is because it is the air pressure that is behind the wheel (depends on wheel geometry and air pumping by the wheel too). This is why turbos leak more at idle/low load conditions and leak less when under full load/boost."
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Default 03-26-2015, 11:37 AM

I had the same problem as you. I took it to BMW of Fremont and told them my turbo's rattled. I got new turbo's, 6 new fuel injectors, and eventually a new fuel pump. Who's your service adviser?


2009 335i e92 n54 | FBO | JB4 | e85 flash |
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Default 03-26-2015, 01:14 PM

I had what seemed to be the exact same problem. Except I was consuming quite a bit of oil. The problem magically stopped when I switched to liquimoly. Maybe just a coincidence... but I'm not smoking / burning oil anymore


2008 e61 535xit: VTT GCs, Fuel-it PI, fuelab FPR w/ return line, stage 2 lpfp, fuelab "700" inline pump, RB external PCV, VRSF 7.5" race FMIC, Inlets, outlet, AR ***, 3" chargepiping, 3" exhaust, JB4, BMS PI controller
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Levan-i Levan-i is offline
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Default 03-26-2015, 01:39 PM

samstryker
thats very interesting,
what exactly oil did you use before?
and what exactly oil grade you use liquimoly


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ST - GTW3684
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Default 03-27-2015, 06:32 PM

I was using the factory recomended bmw oil. Now im using 10w-40 liquimoly. Very interesting indeed. I used to consume about a quart close to every 1000 miles or so. Now none at all... :


2008 e61 535xit: VTT GCs, Fuel-it PI, fuelab FPR w/ return line, stage 2 lpfp, fuelab "700" inline pump, RB external PCV, VRSF 7.5" race FMIC, Inlets, outlet, AR ***, 3" chargepiping, 3" exhaust, JB4, BMS PI controller
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Default 03-28-2015, 11:03 AM

I bought some high flow AR ********* that I might put on here soon. Sucks cause I literally went through the list of all things that it could possibly be and at the end even got Rob to rebuild and upgrade my older rb turbos thinking thats what it was and after that still the same. Really have no idea at this point.

Things I have tried:
Valve cover gasket
RB turbos-all options
BMS OCC-with vtt inlets
RB pcv valve and cap
compression test-fine
block test-fine
Oil stand gasket
Tried putting stock PCV system back on
Looked in block with turbos out and didnt see any signs of oil
Motul 5-40 oil

Dont know what else is left to try......


07 E92 MT RB Turbos-600whp
08 E82 Built engine/trans Speedtech ST 6466
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Cloud9Blue Cloud9Blue is offline
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Default 03-28-2015, 01:46 PM

http://www.n54tech.com/forums/showthread.php?t=25365

Did you check this?


09 BMW E92 335i: EFR 7670 / Motiv / AP Racing / Wavetrac / TC Kline [Full Modlist]
07 BMW R1200S: Shine Yellow / Akrapovic / Ohlins
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Default 06-25-2017, 08:04 PM

I know this is an old thread but im having the exact problem right now. OP did you find a solution?
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Default 06-26-2017, 12:49 AM

The factory coats will mask smoke. The coatless ***** just revealed the underlying problem.
The underlying problem could be failing turbo journal bearings/seals, bad PCV, etc etc.
If you have white smoke, then water might be entering the oil system. Check your coolant expansion tank for oil.
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Default 06-27-2017, 04:26 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by alpha8484
I know this is an old thread but im having the exact problem right now. OP did you find a solution?
Yea, it was the turbos. Upgraded them to hybrids and haven't have a problem since.

Evan


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