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Faults, Fixes and DIY Please share your experience and knowledge with other members by contributing your own DIY, or by helping another member find the elusive fix!


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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 02:13:23 AM   #1
RaceMX-M3
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Default DIY: S54 Cylinder Compression Test

DISCLAIMER - I am posting this DIY for informational purposes only. If you are not comfortable doing this yourself or do not own the correct tools then I suggest you take your car to a qualified professional to perform the test. I am simply sharing my personal method for conducting the test and assume no liability for damage to your car. For reference I have included a copy of the instructions from the Bentley Manual. My instructions differ slightly from the Bentley Manual.





Remove the four (13mm) nuts indicated and remove the strut brace



Remove the cover attached to the front of the rain tray




Remove the two cables from the front of the rain tray




Release the 3 clips indicated by pushing down gently and turning counter-clockwise and remove the cover on top of the rain tray and the cabin filter





Remove the 4 torx bolts indicated (T-30) and remove the rain tray





Remove the two clips as indicated and remove the plastic cover from the front of the engine




Push the cover forward and then pull up




Remove the 6 nuts (10 mm) securing the engine cover



Remove the oil filler cap and engine vent hose, remove the engine cover by pulling up gently at the front and rear of the cover



Re-install the oil vent hose and oil filler cap and remove the plastic cover on top of the ignition coils



Start the car and allow the motor to warm up to normal operating temperature and then shut the motor off and take the key out of the ignition

Remove the four torx bolts (T-25) from the ECU cover




There are 5 black connectors plugged into the factory ECU. Disconnect the connectors labeled by the RED NUMBERS 1, 2 and 3... RECONNECT connectors 1 and 2 and leave connector 3 unplugged until the compression test has been concluded.

***NOTE Turning the ignition key on with the connector unplugged will throw a EML light. The EML light will go away after the ignition is cycled on/off twice, however codes may remain and need to be cleared by an authorized BMW service center or using a handheld scan tool.

*Optional - I connect an automotive battery charger to the pos/neg connections on the passenger side of the engine bay during the compression testing.




Remove all six ignition coils and spark plugs












Press the throttle linkage downward to open all of the throttle bodies and prop it open for the duration of the testing




You may now carry out compression testing for each of the cylinders. Attach your compression gauge to cylinder 1, turn the ignition key on and hold in the start position long enough for the engine to turn over 6-8 times (or until the pressure gauge stops advancing). Record the results and test the remaining cylinders.






Re-install the parts on your car - torque specs and compression specs/acceptable margin of error (for a stock S54) are indicated on the pages from the Bentley manual. Good luck and hope this test confirms a healthy S54 for you.

Last edited by RaceMX-M3; Thu, Dec-31-2009 at 11:17:50 PM.
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 02:16:33 AM   #2
imapimp
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Thanks for the DIY Scott. What were your compression #s? And what Compression ratio is your motor at?
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 02:39:51 AM   #3
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that was quick! this should go to DIY section as well! Nice job!
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 03:14:26 AM   #4
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Cool

I would suggest taking everything off first, so as to work on a cold engine.
And then, when you are ready to perform the test, bring the engine up to normal operating temps, do the ECU connectors and perform the test.

If I missed the reason for working around a hot engine, then disregard my post.
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 03:49:19 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imapimp View Post
Thanks for the DIY Scott. What were your compression #s? And what Compression ratio is your motor at?
You're welcome. I actually do not know what the CR of my motor is - HPF does not disclose that info (at least not to me) and has requested not to post results of compression tests, hope you understand.

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Originally Posted by Red Baron View Post
I would suggest taking everything off first, so as to work on a cold engine.
And then, when you are ready to perform the test, bring the engine up to normal operating temps, do the ECU connectors and perform the test.

If I missed the reason for working around a hot engine, then disregard my post.
Good advice Robert. Wear gloves when you pull the coils/plugs, that shiz gets hot.
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 06:22:03 AM   #6
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Great DIY!!!
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 08:39:59 PM   #7
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Very nice and detailed write Scott, I'm sure many members will appreciate this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by imapimp View Post
Thanks for the DIY Scott. What were your compression #s? And what Compression ratio is your motor at?
I did another one yesterday on a warm motor and got 145-147psi. We have the same pistons, so you should be right there too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Baron View Post
I would suggest taking everything off first, so as to work on a cold engine.
And then, when you are ready to perform the test, bring the engine up to normal operating temps, do the ECU connectors and perform the test.

If I missed the reason for working around a hot engine, then disregard my post.
I agree. A) It lets you take work on removing things while the motor is cold and B) Less time taking that stuff off and letting the motor cool so you get a more accurate result.
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Old Wed, Dec-30-2009, 11:37:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSpired View Post
Very nice and detailed write Scott, I'm sure many members will appreciate this.



I did another one yesterday on a warm motor and got 145-147psi. We have the same pistons, so you should be right there too.



I agree. A) It lets you take work on removing things while the motor is cold and B) Less time taking that stuff off and letting the motor cool so you get a more accurate result.
Thanks Mike, glad your motor compression checked out.
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Old Thu, Dec-31-2009, 07:39:15 AM   #9
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Nicely done. I will move this thread to the DIY section in a while so it doesn't get lost.
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Old Thu, Dec-31-2009, 08:09:04 AM   #10
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thats bro for this
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Discussing DIY: S54 Cylinder Compression Test in the Faults, Fixes and DIY Forum - Please share your experience and knowledge with other members by contributing your own DIY, or by helping another member find the elusive fix! at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)