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      01-14-2012, 03:45 PM   #1
hurricane56
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n52 Spark Plug Change

Thanks to this great site and all its contributing members, I was able to change out the spark plugs and coils on my 2006 325xi. I just wanted to share a couple pictures and notes regarding this process.

After having three coils fail within the span of a couple months, I decided that it was time to change the remaining three coils and do the spark plug change while I had the cowl and engine cover off.

I use the DIY guide as seen here:
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=174217

Here's a picture of the used spark plugs. I only changed 5 of 6, because my dealership gave me a new plug when one of my coils went out.

As you can see it appears like all the plugs were original Bosch plugs. What was interesting was that the gap on all plugs had opened up to about .047" from the factory spec. which is .043"

Here's a close-up of one of the old plugs electrode.


The tools listed for use on the DIY guide are correct, but I ended up buying an extended spark plug socket from ECS tuning. Also, if you don't have some type of angular socket adapter, you'll need a stubby extension, around 3" to remove the spark plug for cylinder 5 because of the engine cross brace.


My initial impressions after I went on a test drive were good. I didn't have any CEL lights or uneven idle. I think double-checking the gaps with a spark plug tool and feeler gauges is the way to go. The start-up and idle were noticeably improved afterwards.

Also, as a final note I got all of my parts from partsgeek.com, I saved about $9 on each coil, and about $5 on each plug. The coils and plugs they sell are original Bosch and NGK, they're just not stamped with the BMW logo.
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      01-14-2012, 04:16 PM   #2
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Great, congratulations.

How many miles on yours? Engine is designed to handle small gap increase over time with no issues- the engine operating point adjusts accordingly. Nevetheless, it is a good idea to change the plugs.

What was the condition of your remaining three coils?
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      01-14-2012, 04:37 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by queensfield View Post
Great, congratulations.

How many miles on yours? Engine is designed to handle small gap increase over time with no issues- the engine operating point adjusts accordingly. Nevetheless, it is a good idea to change the plugs.

What was the condition of your remaining three coils?
The mileage was about 83,750. The remaining three coils that were original to the car, the older brown colored design, were still operational.
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      01-16-2012, 08:57 AM   #4
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Hi I have a 2007 328xi.....it has 110,000 and I need to change the plugs is it difficult or pretty much like a normal spark plug change? Should I replace the coils too?
Thanks
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      01-16-2012, 12:32 PM   #5
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Good to know. I'm a little new to the e90 world, but are coil packs a common failure item on '06 models? I came from an Audi A4 which was plagued by coil pack design failures.
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      01-16-2012, 02:22 PM   #6
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one of my coils went out around 60k miles. I have read a lot of people have failed ignition coils above 60-70k miles.
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      01-16-2012, 10:33 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capone8 View Post
Hi I have a 2007 328xi.....it has 110,000 and I need to change the plugs is it difficult or pretty much like a normal spark plug change? Should I replace the coils too?
Thanks
The DIY guide for the e90 spark plug change that I linked above is extremely well written and the entire process is not difficult as long as you have some basic wrench turning skills. If you've removed your front cabin air filter and windshield cowl before, the job should take no more than one hour.

Based on my research on this forum, once one coil fails, the others are not too far behind. For a while I kept a spare coil in my garage, the time came to use it a few months ago, and literally the next day another failed.
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      07-02-2012, 04:49 PM   #8
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Sorry to jack your thread:

I had my 2011 328iT (39K miles) in for an oil change today. After my SA read my key, he said that the plugs were over-due, so I told him to go ahead and change them.

Anyone know if the Euro plug schedule is different from the US schedule?
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      07-02-2012, 08:39 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by roundle View Post
Sorry to jack your thread:

I had my 2011 328iT (39K miles) in for an oil change today. After my SA read my key, he said that the plugs were over-due, so I told him to go ahead and change them.

Anyone know if the Euro plug schedule is different from the US schedule?
What does the CBS indicator say in your dash cluster?
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      07-03-2012, 12:22 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hurricane56 View Post
What does the CBS indicator say in your dash cluster?
I don't have iDrive, so no mention of spark plugs.

In other news, car running freaking great (especially at start-up).
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      07-03-2012, 12:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hurricane56 View Post
Thanks to this great site and all its contributing members, I was able to change out the spark plugs and coils on my 2006 325xi. I just wanted to share a couple pictures and notes regarding this process.

After having three coils fail within the span of a couple months, I decided that it was time to change the remaining three coils and do the spark plug change while I had the cowl and engine cover off.

I use the DIY guide as seen here:
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=174217

Here's a picture of the used spark plugs. I only changed 5 of 6, because my dealership gave me a new plug when one of my coils went out.

As you can see it appears like all the plugs were original Bosch plugs. What was interesting was that the gap on all plugs had opened up to about .047" from the factory spec. which is .043"

Here's a close-up of one of the old plugs electrode.


The tools listed for use on the DIY guide are correct, but I ended up buying an extended spark plug socket from ECS tuning. Also, if you don't have some type of angular socket adapter, you'll need a stubby extension, around 3" to remove the spark plug for cylinder 5 because of the engine cross brace.


My initial impressions after I went on a test drive were good. I didn't have any CEL lights or uneven idle. I think double-checking the gaps with a spark plug tool and feeler gauges is the way to go. The start-up and idle were noticeably improved afterwards.

Also, as a final note I got all of my parts from partsgeek.com, I saved about $9 on each coil, and about $5 on each plug. The coils and plugs they sell are original Bosch and NGK, they're just not stamped with the BMW logo.
Cool i need to do this asap. I have 90k miles, no issues but i know i will feel the difference afterwords. I am shopping around for spark plugs and wonder if i should change the coils too. How much did you pay for the plugs and coils? can u give me a separate run down? Thanks!
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      07-04-2012, 01:59 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoRomeo View Post
Cool i need to do this asap. I have 90k miles, no issues but i know i will feel the difference afterwords. I am shopping around for spark plugs and wonder if i should change the coils too. How much did you pay for the plugs and coils? can u give me a separate run down? Thanks!
I would highly recommend changing your coils if you haven't done it yet. Have you replaced any of the coils? My personal experience, is that when one coil went bad, another coil would soon follow. I ended up replacing three separate coils on three different occasions, all around 75k miles.

The trick to saving some money with the plugs and coils is to buy your parts from partsgeek.com or rockauto.com. I don't work for either one of these places, but I've had good success with partsgeek.com. All of the parts I ordered from them like thermostat, water pump, coils, plugs, etc. were all OEM parts that were not stamped with the BMW logo.

Generally speaking, the plugs will be anywhere from $9-11. and the coils will be around $30. If you compare that price to ECS or Tischer BMW, their plugs will be $18 and the coils about $48.
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      07-04-2012, 02:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hurricane56 View Post
What does the CBS indicator say in your dash cluster?
Good to hear that everything is working well. Even if you do not have iDrive, my 325 does not, you still should be able to see the maintenance reminder countdown on the small info screen in between your tachometer and speedo. Use your upper control stalk to scroll to the service indicator.
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      07-05-2012, 11:56 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hurricane56 View Post
I would highly recommend changing your coils if you haven't done it yet. Have you replaced any of the coils? My personal experience, is that when one coil went bad, another coil would soon follow. I ended up replacing three separate coils on three different occasions, all around 75k miles.

The trick to saving some money with the plugs and coils is to buy your parts from partsgeek.com or rockauto.com. I don't work for either one of these places, but I've had good success with partsgeek.com. All of the parts I ordered from them like thermostat, water pump, coils, plugs, etc. were all OEM parts that were not stamped with the BMW logo.

Generally speaking, the plugs will be anywhere from $9-11. and the coils will be around $30. If you compare that price to ECS or Tischer BMW, their plugs will be $18 and the coils about $48.
Great bro! Thanks for the tip. I will check them out. I have not changed my plugs or coils yet. I was planning to change the plugs which I found them for about $10.00 a piece. (NGK 1208) to be exact. I was not planning to change the coils since I have not had any issues. but now that you are mentioning it, i will. I mean it makes sense since I will be working on the plugs.

Thanks again!.
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      11-27-2012, 05:01 AM   #15
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Reviving the dead!
So you recommend replacing old coils when replacing the plugs? What brand of products do you recommend? I hear bosch is very good but has hiccups?? What would you recommend? And what about coils? What brand would be good?
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      11-27-2012, 06:37 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by kiwi29 View Post
Reviving the dead!
So you recommend replacing old coils when replacing the plugs? What brand of products do you recommend? I hear bosch is very good but has hiccups?? What would you recommend? And what about coils? What brand would be good?
If you are going to DIY the plugs, I would not replace the coils just for the hell of it. Coils fail vary rarely. If one fails, then replace it as necessary. If you don't DIY then maybe there is a cost savings if you consider the labor involved in replacing a coil; and doing all six would make sense in that case, but your adding at least $200 in parts cost for just a plug chnage.

BTW, my car has 196,000 miles on the orginal coils.
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      11-27-2012, 06:45 AM   #17
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If you are going to DIY the plugs, I would not replace the coils just for the hell of it. Coils fail vary rarely. If one fails, then replace it as necessary. If you don't DIY then maybe there is a cost savings if you consider the labor involved in replacing a coil; and doing all six would make sense in that case, but your adding at least $200 in parts cost for just a plug chnage.

BTW, my car has 196,000 miles on the orginal coils.
Ill definitely pass on the coil change! at $300 for a maybe? I definitely will throw it towards something more useful. I was just nervous though because OP mentioned to one of the posters about replacing it as preventative maintenance or something like that but if you're already at 200k and still haven't changed it, I should be good for a while longer. How is your driving style though? Don't those factors also contribute to whether you'd need to change plugs, oil, etc. Differently?
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I'm going to use a very simple analogy, I hope you'll understand.
Driving is like having sex.
It really is. You can read up all you want about how to please a woman, you can look at all the diagrams in the world, but just like the clitoris, you won't know what the hell an apex is before you actually find it.
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      11-27-2012, 07:09 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by kiwi29 View Post
Ill definitely pass on the coil change! at $300 for a maybe? I definitely will throw it towards something more useful. I was just nervous though because OP mentioned to one of the posters about replacing it as preventative maintenance or something like that but if you're already at 200k and still haven't changed it, I should be good for a while longer. How is your driving style though? Don't those factors also contribute to whether you'd need to change plugs, oil, etc. Differently?
I drive my BMW like it should be driven, hard and fast. I've changed the plugs every 95,000 miles.
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      11-27-2012, 07:12 AM   #19
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52904 E Autopower Street Roll Bar my BMW like it should be driven, hard and fast. I've changed the plugs every 95,000 miles.[/quote]

Okay then ill actually follow what you're saying. If you were a conservative driver, I would've probably brushed it to the side. Now changing your plugs at 95k... did they seize or was there any difficulties removing them the first time around?
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Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
I'm going to use a very simple analogy, I hope you'll understand.
Driving is like having sex.
It really is. You can read up all you want about how to please a woman, you can look at all the diagrams in the world, but just like the clitoris, you won't know what the hell an apex is before you actually find it.
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