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Re: DIY these days Posted by Bill Homer [Email] (#3427) [Profile/Gallery] (more from Bill Homer) on Thu, 22 Oct 2020 08:35:10
In Reply to: DIY these days, don m [Profile/Gallery] , Wed, 7 Oct 2020 08:26:54 Members do not see ads below this line. - Help Keep This Site Online - Signup
Yes, newer cars are notoriously difficult to work on. I was recently given a 2008 BMW 328i which needed a significant amount of work, despite being a southern, low-mileage example in outstanding physical condition. One of the first things to attend to was to change the leaking valve cover gasket, which in addition to allowing oil to burn on the exhaust manifold, will also eventually foul an expensive sensor plugged into the valve cover. Having changed valve cover gaskets on every car I have owned, I was astounded to find what this involves on my "new" car. First of all, BMW started around that time to make the valve cover out of plastic, which means that there is a high likelihood of warping or cracking, and reuse with a new gasket is not recommended - this is a $600 part at the dealer, and the aftermarket parts are iffy. Second, this is rated by the dealer (who does this job every day) as a 4.5 hour job - meaning at least 9 for me - requiring removal of all sorts of parts to get to it. While you're in there, you might as well change out some other things, like plastic breather hoses, spark plugs, etc. Had to buy a set of E-sockets to even work on it.
Contrast this to my Volvo 1800E where the valve cover is in full view and held in by four Philips-head screws.
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