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      11-09-2017, 07:37 PM   #1
DuSh
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Advise for f15 owner regarding Valve stem seals in 50i engine

Hi everyone,

It may seem I'm posting in the wrong forum, but I think you guys are the one who has knowledge about Valve stem seals issue in n63.
I checked realoem and it looks like n63tu uses same valve stem seals, same design engine basically with crazy hot cats located right in the back of engine slowly frying everything and especially rubber components (seals, gaskets, hoses etc)

I was wondering if you can share some knowledge for us f15 owners of how to avoid expensive repair and maybe any remedy available that you know of?

1. How often this happens, can someone approximately say like in 10% of all 50i engines or more or less? Just to have rough idea

2. Is it true that it happens more to stop-n-go traffic driven cars and less with mostly highway driven cars - as I've heard heat is main enemy that stiffens rubber valve stem seals and they become rigid and non compliant? Allegedly highway cruising has better cooling and engine is not overheated as much as in city traffic - not sure if true

3. Are there any oil additives we can use with every oil change to add and protect, condition or rejuvenate valve stem seals? I've heard AT 205 - is it good?

4. I've read on German forums that there are 2 main remedies to prolong life of 50i engine - low temp thermostat (like X5M uses, I think it's around 90 degree Celsius thermostat and opens earlier and helps keep engine cooler) and the other remedy is to install downpipes to eliminate heat from cats

5. Any other advice you can share please?

Thank you very much!
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      11-10-2017, 06:41 AM   #2
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AFAIK, the newer valve stem seals (used from late model E70, and all F15) donít suffer the preliminary failure as the one it replaced.
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      11-10-2017, 10:19 AM   #3
Pierce330
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Is your X out of warranty already?
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      11-10-2017, 10:26 AM   #4
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Seems that you might be fine since you have the updated seals.

Keep in mind valve seals are an internal engine part...the rubber is made to withstand high temps. Your engine and oil cooling system should keep temps in a range where they are meant to run perfectly.

Going with a lower thermostat will affect a lot of other things and will not fix the valve seal problem.

Keep in mind valve seals is nothing new with engines. Focus on things that are new will point to the problem...for example

-Direct Injection
-Extended Oil Intervals
-People wanting to cold start the car and drive

Out of these 3 things direct injection may have the most affect on seals. Prior to direct injection, intake valves were always cleaned by the fuel injectors. Removing this allows build up from the valves from the combustion chamber. There's also build up from the crankcase ventilation system constantly coating the area with oil film.
Walnut blasting is a common procedure with direct injection engines. The reason it's not marketed for our v8s is because of the labor cost involved. (most cases the engine needs to be removed)
So just because we have intakes on the bottom side of the engine doesn't mean we're immune to the disadvantages of direct injection.

https://www.newtis.info/tisv2/a/en/f...old/1VnYvs8OBw

Installing an oil catch-can will help stop the build up of oil and film in that area.

Not sure about this but, water/methanol injection may help with the cleaning.

Shortening the oil interval should help renew the additives lost over time. Some additives are made to help swell up the rubber valve seals. Though you have to constantly use these additives...it's not a use once-fix-the-problem-forever.

Personally from a cold start I let the car sit at least a minute before considering driving off. Synthetic oils are much better than conventional oil so you may not need to do this.

One of the best things to do is spend a lot of money and have walnut blasting done

Last edited by philly42; 11-10-2017 at 10:37 AM.
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      11-10-2017, 10:53 AM   #5
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Thank you all for replies! It's reassuring to know that this issue is not as bad as it was. I'll definitely shorter oil intervals and look into walnut blasting and installing oil catch-can!
I have 2014 x5 and warranty is up in 5 months. Extended warranty is $6k which is a bit pricey to be honest, but with all advise you guys gave me I may be just fine
Thank you very much!
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