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Sten

E39 Touring Psssssssssssssssssssst

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Afternoon All,

After a trouble free 800 mile round trip to the Isle Of Mull last weekend (32mpg overall btw) I was reversing up my drive yesterday and I could hear a hissing noise. Having evicted the dogs to discount either of them, I could hear the noise coming from under the forward section of the load area. Took the cover off and the noise was air leaking from the brass fitting on top of the airbag - I pressed on it and it jumped off with a bang. Obviously the car dropped on that side and flagged an alarm. It looks like the plastic clip that secures the brass fitting has lost it's tension, and it's not listed as a part on RealOEM. I found a new pair on Evilbay which I've ordered, having fiddled with the clip the suspension is back to normal but I'm not risking using the car until I've replaced it. Does anyone know of a 'safe' way of releasing the pressure from the airbag/reservoir, I don't want to damage anything.. The airbags and reservoirs have been replaced by the PO (@andyrt200) along with a whole load of other stuff.

Edited by Sten
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2 hours ago, Sten said:

Afternoon All,

After a trouble free 800 mile round trip to the Iale Of Mull last weekend (32mpg overall btw) I was reversing up my drive yesterday and I could hear a hissing noise. Having evicted the dogs to discount either of them, I could hear the noise coming from under the forward section of the load area. Took the cover off and the noise was air leaking from the brass fitting on top of the airbag - I pressed on it and it jumped off with a bang. Obviously the car dropped on that side and flagged an alarm. It looks like the plastic clip that secures the brass fitting has lost it's tension, and it's not listed as a part on RealOEM. I found a new pair on Evilbay which I've ordered, having fiddled with the clip the suspension is back to normal but I'm not risking using the car until I've replaced it. Does anyone know of a 'safe' way of releasing the pressure from the airbag/reservoir, I don't want to damage anything.. The airbags and reservoirs have been replaced by the PO (@andyrt200) along with a whole load of other stuff.

Remove air suspension fuse. There are two of them in right side of boot, check fuse diagram, to know which ones to remove, or disconnect battery. Then slowly undo blue or red air line( depends which side air bag you want to release from air) from valve body next to battery in spare wheel well. It's a 10 mm plastic nut holding air line to valve body. You will hear air starting to slowly come out. 

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Excellent thanks, I'll give that a whirl. Think I'll put a jack under the sill as well, just in case.

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Just undo the line connected to the bag pal, undo the line slowly and the air will release slowly.

 

No need to use brute force

 

How old are the bags too? Might be worth considering replacing them for peace of mind 

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New clip arrived, fitted but didn't feel like it was positively locked into place. Put the compressor fuse back in, starts to pump the car up then the hose lets go with a bang. Now I'm puzzled! Anyone come across this problem before? Airbag has been replaced with Aerosus 165639 by PO.

20211018_161159.jpg

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23 minutes ago, Sten said:

New clip arrived, fitted but didn't feel like it was positively locked into place. Put the compressor fuse back in, starts to pump the car up then the hose lets go with a bang. Now I'm puzzled! Anyone come across this problem before? Airbag has been replaced with Aerosus 165639 by PO.

20211018_161159.jpg

There was something with either aerosus or arnott bags having different design clip. Have a search on here, it's been talked about already before.

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Just now, Ray112 said:

There was something with either aerosus or arnott bags having different design clip. Have a search on here, it's been talked about already before.

 

Yup; new Aerosus and Arnott bags come with their own clips. The OEM ones do not fit

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4 hours ago, d_a_n1979 said:

 

Yup; new Aerosus and Arnott bags come with their own clips. The OEM ones do not fit

Thought it was something there, thanks for clarifying up things :rolleyes: 

Only now question is, can you buy clips from each of those bags separately for example from manufacturer?

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We'll soon find out. I rang Aerosus but have ended up emailing them to see if they'll sell the clips and o rings separately. I've had a look through the box of spares I got with the car and found two clips along with the old airbags. One looked to be slightly different so I've tried that and it seems to be working though I haven't driven anywhere yet.

Edited by Sten
Fat fingers

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Sorry to hear it’s causing you bother! 
 

Typically nothing like that ever happened with the fittings in the 40k + miles we did since replacing the bags & finally getting the air suspension to work correctly. I had them off & on a good few times in the years before & during the big rebuild. 
 

I did keep a spare end or two from the original accumulators with the plastic clips still attached just incase. I thought there was one either under the boot floor, or in that original cubbyhole box (that would have sat where the sub is now). That cubbyhole box was in the big cardboard box of stuff you took. If you can’t see them let me know & I’ll have a look about here. 
 

The top pipes / brass fittings are the ends of the newish (a few years ago now) genuine BMW accumulators. The plastic clips came with them so are genuine too. Not sure what the ones you get from eBay are, possibly not a great fit. I’m sure they are meant to use the genuine plastic clips. 
 

As I said never caused any problems before. I put the original airbag(s?) in the big box, you could check the fitment of them compared to the ones on the car but as far as I remember they are absolutely identical, they are meant to be. 
 

Which side is it I can’t quite work it out? One side has quite new bag on, the other is a good three years 40K+ miles old. Not sure I can actually remember which side it was I changed recently anyway, the new bag is easy to spot though:

 

pC5faAn.jpg

 

The new one had their name printed into the rubber, the old one didn’t. 
 

I did have an issue with the very first accumulator I put in way back when, it had a fault with the pressed steel top & did something similar to what you described the very first time I dropped the car to the ground with the new bag on, springing a leak very close to the top fitting. Seems odd one would fail like that again after being on the car with plenty of heavy loads in since. But saying that even a leak close by in the pressed steel top shouldn’t cause the brass top to just pop off as you described. Very odd really, I had the fear putting them on the first few times as you found they do come off with quite a bag! But they never did come off on me, maybe the amount of times they ended having to go on & off didn’t do the plastic clips any good. Hopefully you’ll find the original one somewhere, I go & have a look about for one here anyway. 
 


 

If you get into changing out airbag to test things (there were quite a few spares in that big box) inflate them with an air line off the car first as one had a hole in I think, just not sure if I included that one. The newer one with the scuff marks is totally fine though, if its that one you can definitely put it back on just to try, it would be safe to use for a little while. 
 

They are very easy to swap out once deflated. Just one 13mm head bolt on the bottom & those two clips on the top. Just inflate it with an air line again once in the car to get it pushed up into position or the two top clips are a right bugger to get back on. Not that I had plenty of practice or anything….. 

 

 

If you get it fixed & feel like changing anything else I’d be looking at the links & ball joints for the ride hight sensors, I had in the back of my mind to look at them some time, they are something I never touched. The ride hight never seemed to settle in exactly the same place if you took a tape measure to it. I was wondering if they were getting worn of stiff. It did seem to settle much more in the same place (to within a MM or two) a few years ago after I first rebuilt the rear end & set the ride hight to the exact factory Sport height. Of course nothing to do with the current problem though. 

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Quick update - normal service resumed after I fitted the clip that looked to be slightly different from the box of spares that came with the car. I got a reply from Aerosus:-

 

'Thank you for contacting Aerosus.
Unfortunately we do not have the clips or o rings as spares for this unit.
If you manage to buy spares locally please send us an invoice and we might be able to refund you.
They should be standard issued clips.'

 

Which frankly is about as much use as a chocolate fireguard. I need to get my calipers on the standatd clip and measure it then get hold of an Aerosus clip and compare them. Needless to say I'm not dismantling it whilst it's working!

 

Thanks all for the pointers @Andyrt200

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3 hours ago, Sten said:

Quick update - normal service resumed 

 

3 hours ago, Sten said:

 I need to get my calipers on the standatd clip and measure it then get hold of an Aerosus clip and compare them. Needless to say I'm not dismantling it whilst it's working!

 

Thanks all for the pointers @Andyrt200

 

No problem, glad you are mobile again.
 

All the plastic clips that were either in the box or on the car are OE BMW. The ones on the car should be the much newer ones but it’s possible I swapped one or both for a 20 year old original one(s) at some point to try to save the new plastic clips from getting damaged when I was doing a lot of taking them off & on with the extended fault finding before giving in & getting the new valve block. It’s the kind of thing I’d do then forget to change back to the new ones! 
 

You have got OE & replacement air bags in the box, you can compare the fittings sizes on to be sure very easily. 

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