Timing Chain in BMW 520d Snapped

53
Found 14th Jun 2015
Hello,

Timing Chain in my BMW 520d is snapped. on Computer it's show EGR fault and car doesn't start. It's 57 Registration manual car.

Any idea who should i take it to and any recommendations for mechanics in warrington, manchester, liverpool area.

Checked a few mechanics, and nobody is giving exact quote until they strip down the engine but everyone keeps saying minimum cost would be £1700.

Any suggestions please.

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53 Comments

This is why you should replace timing belt before recommended interval as engine would need major repair and most may suggest full recon.
Stripping down will reveal extent of damage and if the engine can be repaired I don't think so
Try to find a diesel specialist but not main dealer or look for replacement engine from a scrap yard
Reckon you're looking at £2K

Original Poster

sowotsdis

This is why you should replace timing belt before recommended interval as … This is why you should replace timing belt before recommended interval as engine would need major repair and most may suggest full recon.Stripping down will reveal extent of damage and if the engine can be repaired I don't think soTry to find a diesel specialist but not main dealer or look for replacement engine from a scrap yardReckon you're looking at £2K



It's actually Chain and not belt.

They are not supposed to snap but hey ho.
Do you think it's not worth getting it repaired. Do you think best option is another engine from scrap yard ?

Ouch! It's going be expensive

Original Poster

LtfdTony

Ouch! It's going be expensive


hence the request if anyone know anyone good closer to my location. not someone who charges £50 an hour labour.

At least with a replacement engine, you are going to know the cost going in. Stripping the existing engine is somewhat of an unknown quantity and could easily become a bottomless pit where you get so far in, you are almost forced to continue.
The problem is the sheer number of man hours at high rates.

Its got to be worth at least researching whats available and then weighing up the pros and cons.

Ohh and this is a known fault. Disgusting that the manufacturer can get away with customers having to pay for the product's achilles heel.

It's worth reading this article and similar.

clicky

this is a common problem with the BMW N47 engine

does the car have full BMW service history?

EliTom

markq

At least with a replacement engine, you are going to know the cost going … At least with a replacement engine, you are going to know the cost going in. Stripping the existing engine is somewhat of an unknown quantity and could easily become a bottomless pit where you get so far in, you are almost forced to continue.The problem is the sheer number of man hours at high rates.Its got to be worth at least researching whats available and then weighing up the pros and cons.Ohh and this is a known fault. Disgusting that the manufacturer can get away with customers having to pay for the product's achilles heel.It's worth reading this article and similar.clicky



yes it is a weak point of this engine but if the engine is not maintained correctly then it makes the situation much worse

BMW are not supporting cars that are not BMW maintained because the have no control over service intervals / when the oil was changed / what oil was used etc etc

EliTom

i reckon they can only give you proper quote after viewing inside imo

Original Poster

It does have service history but i missed last service, probably my fault.

Never bought anything from scrap yard. How do i know i am buying the right part and at right cost, and how do i collect and take it to mechanic, and which mechanic.

what a nightmare Never buying a bmw again.

This exact same thing happened on my 1 series. Sold as shell cheaper than a new engine and trying to recoup the difference. You are screwed BMW wouldn't entertain unless you met their very exacting conditions even then it was deemed too old for them (07 plate) at that age they say it is beyond the life expectancy of the car. £2k minimum for the engine and parts.
Edited by: "BarmyBulldog" 14th Jun 2015

Original Poster

BarmyBulldog

This exact same thing happened on my 1 series. Sold as shell cheaper than … This exact same thing happened on my 1 series. Sold as shell cheaper than a new engine and trying to recoup the difference. You are screwed BMW wouldn't entertain unless you met their very exacting conditions even then it was deemed too old for them (07 plate) at that age they say it is beyond the life expectancy of the car. £2k minimum for the engine and parts.



would be able spend 2k but nothing more as on even 2k it's pushing it, how can i plan ? Shall try to repair this ? shall start looking for other engines. how do i search other engines ?

who replaces engine on my car and how much do they charge ?

zayf

hence the request if anyone know anyone good closer to my location. not … hence the request if anyone know anyone good closer to my location. not someone who charges £50 an hour labour.



That's not a bad price TBH. When you think, that £50 per hour (may or may not include VAT) take out all the costs of taxes and electricity and water, rent/mortgage for premises. Then the guy (if its just him) takes what's left, then has that subjected to NI and income tax he is not earning a whole lot!

Its not like you are paying him £50 pure profit per hour.

just bear in mind even to repair the engine means engine out.

so you will be looking at minimum 15 hours labour - maybe up to 20 hours plus parts

when did you have your last service done? how many miles ? all services before from BMW? are you the first owner?

EliTom

Original Poster

elitom

just bear in mind even to repair the engine means engine out.so you will … just bear in mind even to repair the engine means engine out.so you will be looking at minimum 15 hours labour - maybe up to 20 hours plus partswhen did you have your last service done? how many miles ? all services before from BMW? are you the first owner?EliTom



hi,

i had car for about 3 and half years, serviced once by bmw and 116k miles on it now. I am 3rd owner, last owner had it for about 3 years and i did for about 3 and a half. car is 8 years old and used be owned by bmw employee as 1st owner.

previous services are mix by bmw and black diamond (local mechanic but expensive) in warrington.

zayf

would be able spend 2k but nothing more as on even 2k it's pushing it, … would be able spend 2k but nothing more as on even 2k it's pushing it, how can i plan ? Shall try to repair this ? shall start looking for other engines. how do i search other engines ?who replaces engine on my car and how much do they charge ?



Sorry I can't help you. I was told by BMW if they were to contribute to the cost. It would need an inspection by BMW first which was £100 odd. Then the actual repair they would be prepared to contribute is 50% but the full repair cost was £6-7k this was obviously if they were prepared to help by having full service history with them so I think you are out of luck. You'd be best quoting around and Googling. It wasn't worth the time and money so I sold it to a company who repairs then sells in Bolton. Try ebay they are lots of sellers who will replace including labour in the costs but would require transportation to their garage in Southampton I think it was. For my 118d it was £1750 then transport costs to and from the garage.
Edited by: "BarmyBulldog" 14th Jun 2015

£50 an hour for a good mechanic is very reasonable. This is not the sort of job you want a to skimp on.

Bear in mind a scrappy engine could suffer the same problem, you still need to be certain of the replacements provenance.

Get quotes for engine replacements from garages. Sourcing your own could save a few bob, but they can wash their hands of anything mechanical NOT linked to the installation.

Try posting on Honest John, just ignore some of the old duffers who'll bang on about how you should've bought a Japanese petrol with no modern features!

Good luck, but you need to be prepared for the lube here I fear

zayf

hi,i had car for about 3 and half years, serviced once by bmw and 116k … hi,i had car for about 3 and half years, serviced once by bmw and 116k miles on it now. I am 3rd owner, last owner had it for about 3 years and i did for about 3 and a half. car is 8 years old and used be owned by bmw employee as 1st owner.previous services are mix by bmw and black diamond (local mechanic but expensive) in warrington.



then TBH you will have no chance with BMW. Sorry!

the problem is the chain tensioner is very sensitive to having a good clean supply of the correct grade and type of oil. So BMW will not entertain a claim if either / or a service interval has been missed / is late or there is a possibility that the wrong / cheaper grade / type of oil has been used. Once the chain tensioner starts to stick the chain is not at the correct tension and wears more rapidly - hence the failure.

Depending on the value of the car you need to find a BMW specialist who knows this repair well - it is a very common fault as the engine needs to be stripped and checked and the damaged parts replaced and the new chain sourced from BMW.

EliTom

a ray of hope after all the doom and gloom, which is probably accurate.
I had a cam belt let go a few years back and it did no damage at all, new belt and issue was fixed.
probably best to get the inspection.

airbus330

a ray of hope after all the doom and gloom, which is probably accurate.I … a ray of hope after all the doom and gloom, which is probably accurate.I had a cam belt let go a few years back and it did no damage at all, new belt and issue was fixed.probably best to get the inspection.


Was it the same engine or maybe a Fiat?

http://prestige-german-engines.co.uk/engine-issues/bmw-timing-chain-failure/

this is a fairly accurate account of the situation

EliTom

What speed were you going when it snapped? It can make a difference to how much damage has been caused if you're lucky.

elitom

http://prestige-german-engines.co.uk/engine-issues/bmw-timing-chain-failure/this is a fairly accurate account of the situationEliTom



themorgatron

What speed were you going when it snapped? It can make a difference to … What speed were you going when it snapped? It can make a difference to how much damage has been caused if you're lucky.




also depends which chain has failed - there are two - upper and lower

EliTom

Original Poster

BarmyBulldog

Sorry I can't help you. I was told by BMW if they were to contribute to … Sorry I can't help you. I was told by BMW if they were to contribute to the cost. It would need an inspection by BMW first which was £100 odd. Then the actual repair they would be prepared to contribute is 50% but the full repair cost was £6-7k this was obviously if they were prepared to help by having full service history with them so I think you are out of luck. You'd be best quoting around and Googling. It wasn't worth the time and money so I sold it to a company who repairs then sells in Bolton. Try ebay they are lots of sellers who will replace including labour in the costs but would require transportation to their garage in Southampton I think it was. For my 118d it was £1750 then transport costs to and from the garage.



Umm, Bolton is not far. What do you think they will pay me for my car ?

520d, 57 reg, grey. had 116k miles on.

zayf

Umm, Bolton is not far. What do you think they will pay me for my car … Umm, Bolton is not far. What do you think they will pay me for my car ?520d, 57 reg, grey. had 116k miles on.



Mine was probably worth £3.5k at the very top end and they gave £1k for it so not too bad I didn't think

Original Poster

themorgatron

What speed were you going when it snapped? It can make a difference to … What speed were you going when it snapped? It can make a difference to how much damage has been caused if you're lucky.



It was around 40 to 50 miles an hour. but then car wasn't getting any power hence i cut the engine and tried to start a few times since.

Does trying to start engine cause further damage ?

Original Poster

BarmyBulldog

Mine was probably worth £3.5k at the very top end and they gave £1k for i … Mine was probably worth £3.5k at the very top end and they gave £1k for it so not too bad I didn't think



Can you give me their details maybe it's worth speaking to them, If they can repair and sell for them themselves would they not fix for me ?

zayf

It was around 40 to 50 miles an hour. but then car wasn't getting any … It was around 40 to 50 miles an hour. but then car wasn't getting any power hence i cut the engine and tried to start a few times since.Does trying to start engine cause further damage ?




Yes if it happens you are meant to stop and not attempt a restart but all circumstancial mine was unfortunate yours might be fine and got lucky

Original Poster

BarmyBulldog

Yes if it happens you are meant to stop and not attempt a restart but all … Yes if it happens you are meant to stop and not attempt a restart but all circumstancial mine was unfortunate yours might be fine and got lucky



Can you share the details of the garage who bought your car ? thanks

zayf

Can you share the details of the garage who bought your car ? thanks


Did you hear any banging or knocking from the motor when you turned it over? maybe not too much damage if you're lucky.

zayf

Can you share the details of the garage who bought your car ? thanks



I would but my dad was the mediator in it all I just know they specialised in buying BMWs I tried asking but he can't remember.

Just ask the local lads to torch it

Original Poster

CookinBat

Did you hear any banging or knocking from the motor when you turned it … Did you hear any banging or knocking from the motor when you turned it over? maybe not too much damage if you're lucky.



nope, no noise what so ever, in computer it came up with EGR Fault but breakdown mechanic checked when i tried to start car he said it's not rotating chain.

but thinking over it, chain is at the back and he was looking inside you put engine oil, how could he see chain. Don't think he knew what he was doing.

Edited by: "zayf" 14th Jun 2015

zayf

nope, no noise what so ever, in computer it came up with EGR Fault but … nope, no noise what so ever, in computer it came up with EGR Fault but breakdown mechanic checked when i tried to start car he said it's not rotating chain.but thinking over it, chain is at the back and he was looking inside you put engine oil, how could he see chain. Don't think he knew what he was doing.


He was obviously checking for movement of the camshafts.

Original Poster

Shengis

He was obviously checking for movement of the camshafts.



right ? so is the chain snapped or not would the camshaft move if egr is faulty and/or stuck open ?
Edited by: "zayf" 14th Jun 2015

zayf

right ? so is the chain snapped or not would the camshaft move if egr … right ? so is the chain snapped or not would the camshaft move if egr is faulty and/or stuck open ?



An egr fault is very unlikely to prevent the engine cranking over, An egr fault would probably cause rough running and/or idling.

Egr faults are very common and sometimes they don't put engine warning light on, However it is often still recorded on the ecu etc..

Usually when a chain snaps you'd know, It'd most likely of made a very loud noise and bang.

groenleader

That's not a bad price TBH. When you think, that £50 per hour (may or may … That's not a bad price TBH. When you think, that £50 per hour (may or may not include VAT) take out all the costs of taxes and electricity and water, rent/mortgage for premises. Then the guy (if its just him) takes what's left, then has that subjected to NI and income tax he is not earning a whole lot!Its not like you are paying him £50 pure profit per hour.


Good points well made. To many people on this website fail to see that, they want it at the cheapest price and expect top notch service. As the opening poster says, he wants it fixed cheaply but missed off last service and probably other main service intervals etc. so short term savings come back and bite you in the proverbial.

Original Poster

shauneco

An egr fault is very unlikely to prevent the engine cranking over, An egr … An egr fault is very unlikely to prevent the engine cranking over, An egr fault would probably cause rough running and/or idling.Egr faults are very common and sometimes they don't put engine warning light on, However it is often still recorded on the ecu etc..Usually when a chain snaps you'd know, It'd most likely of made a very loud noise and bang.



No, it didn't make any noise, it's just wasn't getting any power. it was still driveable at around 5miles an hour. but we cut the engine off and then it wouldn't start. but no noises not loud bangs.

Maybe its the tensioner that has gone and is no longer holding the belt tight?
Edited by: "groenleader" 15th Jun 2015

groenleader

Maybe its the tensioner that has gone and is no longer holding the belt … Maybe its the tensioner that has gone and is no longer holding the belt tight?



it is a chain not a belt

as soon as teh chain is not tight / broken valve piston contact will be made.

OP you have two choices really - sell the car as spares / repair or get the car transported to a reptutable BMW specialist and have teh engine professional examined.

If you say it would drive at 5mph and then stopped but no big namg maybe you are lucky that so serious damage has been done, but do not try starting it again - you will only do further damage. Just get the car to a specialist.

You cannot speculate any further! Either cut your losses and sell the car as is - or get it examined. It is impossible to say what has really happened wihout examining the engine and having specialist knowledge

EliTom
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