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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Powertrain and Drivetrain Discussions > N54 Turbo Engine / Drivetrain / Exhaust Modifications - 335i > Intake Valve Cleaning



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      12-03-2012, 11:06 AM   #1
xlid007
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Intake Valve Cleaning

I was doing research on this topic and was shopping around to get this done and some other preventive maintenance on the car since I got it 3 weeks ago. I'm not familiar with the walnut cleaning vs chemical cleaning. I spoke to a shop here in Miami, very nice and friendly Eurowerks and they do a 3 step process with a product BG Cleaning. I wanted to see if this is actually something worth spending my money on aside from an Oil change. My car currently has 88k and its an 07. The idle is not bad at all but just want to prevent anything bad from happening. I was quoted $280 for the 3 step process and $100 for the oil change. I need some input since I'm taking the car in on Saturday. Thanks in advance,
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      12-03-2012, 11:30 AM   #2
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Waste of money. I watched my shop do the walnut blasting and that still required some manual scraping. The fluid will do nothing. Going rate for walnut blasting is $350 including new intake manifold gaskets.
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      12-03-2012, 11:41 AM   #3
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Waste of money. I watched my shop do the walnut blasting and that still required some manual scraping. The fluid will do nothing. Going rate for walnut blasting is $350 including new intake manifold gaskets.
ohh wow, I'm willing to pay that price for it. The thing is finding someone here in S.Fla that does it. I guess i will be doing just the oil change. Anything I should do for maintenance that you can recomend aside from the oil change. Also, my SES light came on which they are going to see what the code is.
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      12-03-2012, 11:45 AM   #4
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Because the N54 is direct injection carbon build up is inevitable. I think it is fair to consider valve cleaning a standard maintenance item with this engine. Unfortunately chemical cleaning is not going to do much for your valves at 88k. A physical cleaning (walnut shell blasting or wire brush scrubbing) is the only way to remove the carbon build up. I am not familair with the BG products but from what I found when searching they are chemical products. At 88k I'd be really surprised that a chemical cleaning would remove the carbon build up. There is a member in Coral Springs that is doing walnut shell blasting for $300... http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=769892

Also $100 for an oil change seems a bit steep. With a coupon the dealer here in Tampa (Reeves) does it for $89.95. If DIY and you purchase the filter and oil from the dealer it is around $60.
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      12-03-2012, 12:35 PM   #5
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Waste of money. I watched my shop do the walnut blasting and that still required some manual scraping. The fluid will do nothing. Going rate for walnut blasting is $350 including new intake manifold gaskets.
Most dealers are charging 600+. All the ones in atlanta I talked to wanted 675+. So I bought the walnuts and the parts to do it myself. I will report back after I do the cleaning myself.
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      12-03-2012, 01:15 PM   #6
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Because the N54 is direct injection carbon build up is inevitable. I think it is fair to consider valve cleaning a standard maintenance item with this engine. Unfortunately chemical cleaning is not going to do much for your valves at 88k. A physical cleaning (walnut shell blasting or wire brush scrubbing) is the only way to remove the carbon build up. I am not familair with the BG products but from what I found when searching they are chemical products. At 88k I'd be really surprised that a chemical cleaning would remove the carbon build up. There is a member in Coral Springs that is doing walnut shell blasting for $300... http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=769892

Also $100 for an oil change seems a bit steep. With a coupon the dealer here in Tampa (Reeves) does it for $89.95. If DIY and you purchase the filter and oil from the dealer it is around $60.
I sent him a PM and havent heard back from him yet. All the shops i've asked around here in Miami charge $100 for the oil change. Braman BMW quoted me $170 for the oil change. Plus i want to take my car to a reputable BMW shop and I saw the pics of their facility at Eurowerks and it's spotless so I'll let you guys know how my experience is since I have the appt this Saturday. I'm going to wait for the other memeber to get back to me on the walnut cleaning.
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      12-03-2012, 01:43 PM   #7
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I sent him a PM and havent heard back from him yet. All the shops i've asked around here in Miami charge $100 for the oil change. Braman BMW quoted me $170 for the oil change. Plus i want to take my car to a reputable BMW shop and I saw the pics of their facility at Eurowerks and it's spotless so I'll let you guys know how my experience is since I have the appt this Saturday. I'm going to wait for the other memeber to get back to me on the walnut cleaning.
$100-$170 seems a little high! Take this to the dealer and see if they will match it.
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      12-03-2012, 02:17 PM   #8
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There is no need to take the car to the dealer for an oil change, DIY and save some money for mods.
If you like bring it to my house i will walk you thru the process.
Get your walnut cleaning done by LivingLife, good guy.
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      12-03-2012, 06:18 PM   #9
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I cleaned my own valves the hard way with copper brushes and carb cleaner. It took a while but overall it was worth it IMO. I ended up getting them just as clean as you would doing walnut blasting although I feel like walnut blasting would be much faster. I spent about 3 hours JUST scrubbing the valves. I was being a little OCD about how clean they were, haha.
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      12-03-2012, 07:55 PM   #10
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I cleaned my own valves the hard way with copper brushes and carb cleaner. It took a while but overall it was worth it IMO. I ended up getting them just as clean as you would doing walnut blasting although I feel like walnut blasting would be much faster. I spent about 3 hours JUST scrubbing the valves. I was being a little OCD about how clean they were, haha.
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      12-03-2012, 10:12 PM   #11
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+1 on doing the oil change yourself. This is the easiest car to change oil.
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      12-03-2012, 10:29 PM   #12
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I also have an 07 w 80k. I have pics I will try to post of before and after. Me and a friend did it w chemical soak and some brushes and ..... zip ties. I closed all the valves I could, filled the port and soaked the over night. Next day hit it with the brush. The result: depending on how anal you are, you can get the port as clean as it came from the factory for ..under $50
Now the question of "is it worth it?" My car had no mods. It dynoed at 261 HP. After the cleaning 284 HP . You be the judge, but for me 20 who for ~$50 . I would say do and do it yourself if you can. I will be doing this once a year. I did full FBO + v3 but I drive around with the tune on map 0. The car feels that much better after the cleaning.
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      12-03-2012, 11:13 PM   #13
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I also have an 07 w 80k. I have pics I will try to post of before and after. Me and a friend did it w chemical soak and some brushes and ..... zip ties. I closed all the valves I could, filled the port and soaked the over night. Next day hit it with the brush. The result: depending on how anal you are, you can get the port as clean as it came from the factory for ..under $50
Now the question of "is it worth it?" My car had no mods. It dynoed at 261 HP. After the cleaning 284 HP . You be the judge, but for me 20 who for ~$50 . I would say do and do it yourself if you can. I will be doing this once a year. I did full FBO + v3 but I drive around with the tune on map 0. The car feels that much better after the cleaning.
WOW.. thats impressive!

I went the walnut route and bought all the parts and walnuts. Was about 180 bucks for everything. I havent done the cleaning yet but will be doing it soon. I should have enough walnuts to clean 2 cars. Then all I have to do is replace the walnuts every other time. I will report back on the results.
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      12-03-2012, 11:18 PM   #14
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WOW.. thats impressive!

I went the walnut route and bought all the parts and walnuts. Was about 180 bucks for everything. I havent done the cleaning yet but will be doing it soon. I should have enough walnuts to clean 2 cars. Then all I have to do is replace the walnuts every other time. I will report back on the results.
If you bought a box from Harbor Freight-it should last you 5 cars easy. That's with no recycling of the shells.
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      12-03-2012, 11:22 PM   #15
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If you bought a box from Harbor Freight-it should last you 5 cars easy. That's with no recycling of the shells.
Really? I was expecting only about 2 cars per box. I got the BMW vacuum adaptor, bmw want and mini 90 degree wand and blaster. Pretty excited about doing it.

Guess once I learn on my car I can help out some of the other guys around here in ATL. All our dealers charge WAY too much.
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      12-03-2012, 11:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfjaws
I cleaned my own valves the hard way with copper brushes and carb cleaner. It took a while but overall it was worth it IMO. I ended up getting them just as clean as you would doing walnut blasting although I feel like walnut blasting would be much faster. I spent about 3 hours JUST scrubbing the valves. I was being a little OCD about how clean they were, haha.
Yep, didn't the same as you did. Total cost was under $50
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      12-03-2012, 11:57 PM   #17
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Here are a couple pictures of my valves @ 73,xxx miles. I have no reason to believe that they've ever been cleaned before...

The third picture is what a pair of them looked like at about 90% clean. I didn't take any 'finished' pictures.





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      12-04-2012, 11:22 AM   #18
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There is no need to take the car to the dealer for an oil change, DIY and save some money for mods.
If you like bring it to my house i will walk you thru the process.
Get your walnut cleaning done by LivingLife, good guy.
The only reason why I'm taking it there is because they are going to check the code of my SES light that came on and depending on what the code is, I'll probably have em fix whatever its related to. But I would definetly take your offer man, I need to learn more about this car. I'm used to working on my own car. I'm doing the walnut blasting with LivnLife this upcoming Saturday.
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      01-26-2013, 01:10 AM   #19
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Finally did my walnut shell blasting. Took about 6 hours. I am sure I can do it again in about 3-4 hours.

Work wasnt that bad. Only problem I had was getting my manifold off. There wasnt enough clearance between it and the rear intake tube. So I removed the studs and it came right out.

I think the car idles a little smoother and is a little bit more responsive. Overall I am glad I did it and will probably do it again in about 15-20 thousand miles and see how it looks in there. I have in place now the BMS oil catch can and RB PCV valve. So it should have a lot less oil in the intake.
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      01-26-2013, 01:16 AM   #20
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If you bought a box from Harbor Freight-it should last you 5 cars easy. That's with no recycling of the shells.
BTW.. you were right. I am sure I can clean my car 3-4 more times.
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      09-28-2013, 07:19 PM   #21
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Is there anything to watch out for when taking the intake manifold off? I have a 2011 N55 engine.
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      09-28-2013, 07:33 PM   #22
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Finally did my walnut shell blasting. Took about 6 hours. I am sure I can do it again in about 3-4 hours.

Work wasnt that bad. Only problem I had was getting my manifold off. There wasnt enough clearance between it and the rear intake tube. So I removed the studs and it came right out.

I think the car idles a little smoother and is a little bit more responsive. Overall I am glad I did it and will probably do it again in about 15-20 thousand miles and see how it looks in there. I have in place now the BMS oil catch can and RB PCV valve. So it should have a lot less oil in the intake.
what air pressure did you run the blaster at?
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