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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Not too long ago I noticed I was down on power and experiencing an intermittent CEL. Pulled the codes and found out it was time to replace my camshaft position sensors. I'm doing all four. But this was a good opportunity to address a couple other items while I was in there. My passenger side VCG wasn't in the best condition so I will do that too. Also, this is a great time to treat the old girl to fresh coilpacks and spart plugs. After pulling them, I noticed they are the originals with a production date of Nov 27, 1999! I'm also doing an oil change, new air filters and transmission fluid.


The next big maintenance project will be the rear end. The differential has a small leak and I'll address a few other items 'while I'm in there' as well.


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2001 BMW M5 Anthracite Metallic with Imola Interior
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Hell Yea! This is awesome, I heard the crankshaft position sensors are quite a pain, haven't looked really into it but plan on doing the same thing you are doing soon!
 

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Did this same job last summer. None of it is difficult, just takes time. The cam position sensors made a huge difference for me.

great looking car and garage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I noticed that my steering fluid reservoir is weeping a bit. anyone else run into this? time for new lines? new reservoir? just clean it and let it ride?

interested in feedback. thanks!


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If you pull the cap and look at the thumb locks for turning you will see one has a small hole in it, that is a bleeder to allow pressure out. Even if everything is perfect some mist will come out it. Yours could be normal if never wiped off. Clean it all and see how fast it comes back. Practically every BMW, with this bottle, I have seen has some wetness.
There is something common to M5s that amplifies this weeping. The hose are poor and sweat after a few years of service. When they start sweating or leaking air gets sucked in when running and return more pressure to the bottle which makes more oil come out the bleeder hole. If you pull the belly pan and look up around the lines you will see oil coating the hoses which means it might be time to replace. Another indicator is turn the wheel to either lock and if the pump starts squealing that means air is in the system which will likely be coming from the lines being past do for replacement.
This is the Coles notes version, there are plenty of threads you could read on the topic. Some have installed a catch can for the bleeder hole. If lines need to be replaced there are better options than stock as stock will likely start sweating again soon after replacement.
 

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IMO, wipe it clean, remove the cap and you will barely be able to notice the large O ring that's essentially mashed down so hard it almost looks like it is part of the threads near the top of the cap. Order a new one and replace. This is 99% of the reason PS reservoirs leak fluid and most people assume it's coming out of the weep hole. But in general if that does not clean up the fluid near the lines, it's likely you should replace both of those lines AND the reservoir due to the mesh screen inside that's sealed in there. Not a bad job if you have a lift like you do, I just did this. There are small O rings on the other side where they go into the aluminum holder block, order new O rings for the additional line there as that one does not need replacement usually as often as the other 2 lines coming from the reservoir. Much of this fluid will manifest itself down on the connection to the power steering pump. So If you want to replace all of it, forget about just doing the O ring. But if you want to clean and check and see if that's it, it's an extremely cheap fix.


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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Very helpful!

I will start by cleaning everything up and trying to find where it's coming from. I normally pride myself on how immaculate i keep my engine bays so peeling back a few components and seeing this gunk...I knew i needed to address it properly.

I will more than likely just order all new parts and replace them all when its time for me to do the rear end maintenance work.

IMO, wipe it clean, remove the cap and you will barely be able to notice the large O ring that's essentially mashed down so hard it almost looks like it is part of the threads near the top of the cap. Order a new one and replace. This is 99% of the reason PS reservoirs leak fluid and most people assume it's coming out of the weep hole. But in general if that does not clean up the fluid near the lines, it's likely you should replace both of those lines AND the reservoir due to the mesh screen inside that's sealed in there. Not a bad job if you have a lift like you do, I just did this. There are small O rings on the other side where they go into the aluminum holder block, order new O rings for the additional line there as that one does not need replacement usually as often as the other 2 lines coming from the reservoir. Much of this fluid will manifest itself down on the connection to the power steering pump. So If you want to replace all of it, forget about just doing the O ring. But if you want to clean and check and see if that's it, it's an extremely cheap fix.


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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ok ok let me start by saying ____ this job as a DIY. It truly sucks lol

thank you for the suggestion to remove the heater hoses going into the firewall for a bit more clearance…that helped a lot. However, the amount of space available is just damn near impossible. I highly recommend you find a good indy for this one lol

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Do yourself a favor and disconnect the heater / coolant hoses going into the firewall. It will give you a good amount of extra room to get the bolts off that hold the metal bracket on that blocks the bank 2 sensors.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hmmm i didnt think of that because the sensors are at the top of the engine at the back…figured the reach would be even worse from below.

Well, all four sensors are out now…doing the valve cover gaskets now then getting it all buttoned back up..
 

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Ok ok let me start by saying ____ this job as a DIY. It truly sucks lol

thank you for the suggestion to remove the heater hoses going into the firewall for a bit more clearance…that helped a lot. However, the amount of space available is just damn near impossible. I highly recommend you find a good indy for this one lol
I spent close to one and a half hours trying to get those two bolts out of the bracket. 🤣 I quit for the day when I got them out. Then the next day was and hour of fun getting the sensors swapped. And a final forty-five minutes putting the bracket back on. Hope to never have to do it again.
 

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those two bolts out of the bracket.
Those buggers are why on a hoist is easier. You look right at them, yes you need extensions and a knuckle, but ...still a pain. From under you don't have to remove the brackets. Mechanics wire and a firm but gentle tug on the wire over something like a hose and a twist keeps them clear enough to install the sensors. Trying the same from above just puts the bracket more in your way.
 

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But if you were changing your valve cover gaskets and had the valve covers off wouldn’t this be a MUCH easier job from up top??
Not sure I understand the question. Do you have a hoist?
I guess it depends if you took the bracket off as part of the valve cover job. If you did then the answer is the same, remove the bracket on the hoist.
 
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