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Flames34

Air dryer rebuilt

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I rebuilt my airdryer today with kit bought on e bay. This is the follow on from my other post about my suspension. Issue was traced to the solenoid on compressor/airdryer sticking which I assumed was down to corrosion.

I pulled airdryer of today and stripped down to empty contents which were indeed full of moisture. With complete assembly removed from car, remove the 2 torx screws in pic below.DSC_0061.thumb.JPG.afe12dd331f1c9b2582a86087eaf314c.JPG

 

Carefully lift airdryer/cylinder away from compressor revealing piston as below.DSC_0062.thumb.JPG.0a536bb36c7869345305aed65e9a3e8a.JPG

 

DSC_0063.thumb.JPG.a8919e81ba10aab9ab89f7820c88610f.JPG

There are then 2 torx screws on the end to remove to gain access to airdryer internalsDSC_0067.thumb.JPG.6ef2cba51de8f9d77b01f231b4eab7b6.JPG

 

Be careful as there is a spring inside and loads of little plastic like balls which trap trap moisture.DSC_0068.thumb.JPG.821d99714fc70962f82e15dfd31ccf46.JPG

 

With dryer held open end up, there is a plastic retaining bung, a perforated washer and fibre filter to remove .DSC_0070.thumb.JPG.d5321952460e37df16811c994daf8f3d.JPG

 

I didn't take a pic of fibre filter but it is under the washer in pic above. This reveals the contents below.DSC_0071.thumb.JPG.8238b8aedd1b5b8542b490d0a6d5b64a.JPG

 

These were emptied into a plastic bowl ( with the idea that if I dry them out, I may be able to use again. Even if just for a temporary fix ).under all these balls there is another filter which sits at the bottom.DSC_0072.thumb.JPG.fd5da745d53db27f5d174a7ecad97a10.JPG

 

The top of the dryer which is also the cylinder for piston also had moisture inside.DSC_0069.thumb.JPG.62456ef74b2ef5ea7c678c0317f7201b.JPG

So this along with the chamber were introduced to the wife's hairdryer and then left outside in the sun for an hour just for good measure.

All parts removed were then replaced by parts from e bay kit in reverse order. Sorry, I didn't take any putting together pics. Below is the solenoid that I needed to previously remove and free off.DSC_0064.thumb.JPG.8256011dede2d6af93ef1f6811d5c8e1.JPG

This is it connected to battery to check it was still workingDSC_0065.thumb.JPG.90c2179bbff91d6ae5fe9c99378e67a5.JPG

 

The picture makes it look like it is covered in rust but in reality it's not as bad as it looks. The plastic bit in the middle is where I squirted contact cleaner and tapped the metal sides with socket bar to free off.

Everything was then refitted and connected up. Car was jacked up slightly and started whilst I watched with a smile as my airbags inflated.

Unfortunately, while I was under the rear end I noticed one of my rear tyres looked a lot more worn than it did from the side view, so a test drive to test suspension was taken to have a new tyre fitted. So far so good. Will update in a week or so if there are any issues.

 

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1 minute ago, nashdm2 said:

Flames, humour me sir, what does this bit of kit do in the air suspension please?

 

It dries the air after it has been compressed by the compressor before it goes into the air springs.

 

When you compress air, the moisture in the air cannot be compressed so it condenses and needs to be removed from the system or prevented from going any further where it can cause problems.  When using compressed air to power air tools or fill air springs in a car, you want the air to be dry and free from moisture which can cause corrosion elsewhere in the air system.

 

After running my 3hp compressor even just once to fill its 50 litre tank, when I undo the drain screw a noticeable amount of water comes out.  

 

 

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12 hours ago, 535i Andrew said:

 

It dries the air after it has been compressed by the compressor before it goes into the air springs.

 

When you compress air, the moisture in the air cannot be compressed so it condenses and needs to be removed from the system or prevented from going any further where it can cause problems.  When using compressed air to power air tools or fill air springs in a car, you want the air to be dry and free from moisture which can cause corrosion elsewhere in the air system.

 

After running my 3hp compressor even just once to fill its 50 litre tank, when I undo the drain screw a noticeable amount of water comes out.  

 

 

It was this moisture that got through to the solenoid in the last pics that caused corrosion and solenoid to stick in open/vent position. So although compressor was pumping, the air was being vented straight to atmosphere giving the impression the compressor was stuffed. I was going to replace compressor but wanted to make sure there wasn't another fault in system that would cook it first. Glad I did because the compressors I found were between 3 and 6 hundred pounds. Cost of repair was £40. I dread to think how much it would have cost to have done at a garage because I bet there are not many that would have taken the time to trace the fault. Most would have just opted to fit complete assembly.

I know parts for beemers are expensive but am amazed at how easy the rear suspension at least is to work on. I am definitely no mechanic but with the help of this forum and youtube I have managed to save a small fortune.

Thanks everyone.:D

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