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Do-It-Yourself information for essential wear and tear items

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Changing Your Fuel Filter

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Difficulty
Changing your fuel filter isn't that difficult of a job. You will need to lift at least the front of the car to get the job done, but it is by no means difficult. It might take a little bit of time to get the old one off depending on the age of your car and the condition of the rubber fuel line hoses. I started off just using ramps, but put the whole car on stands once I realized that extra room is a good thing if you don't want gas spilled all over you!

Tools Needed
Various size flat head screwdrivers
Metric Socket Set
Bucket (To catch the fuel that will leak out)

Parts Needed
Fuel filter (BMW P# 13-32-7-512-019) $53
3x Fuel filter hose clamps (BMW P# 07-12-9-952-104) $0.62 (If you're going to replace your hoses as well you will need 6 of these. I decided not to since my hoses were still in good shape)

Instructions

Safely lift at least the front of the car
1. Using a lift or a floor jack with ramps lift at least the front of the vehicle. Instructions for jacking up your car can be found here. This can be a very dangerous step, so make sure that the car is properly secured before ever getting under it. Never get under a car that is just supported by a jack!


Locate the fuel filter

Locate the fuel filter
2. The fuel filter is located on the drivers side of the vehicle right next to the transmission cross brace.

 


Remove the cover bolts


The last two are a bit hidden

Remove the cover around the fuel filter
3. Using a 8mm socket, remove the three bolts holding the back of the cover on.
4. Using at least a 3" socket extension, remove the two hidden bolts at the front of the cover (closer to the engine). Taking the entire cover off will make things much easier.

 

(For those of you who might be wondering, my jack is not lifting the car in these pictures, it's merely there as an insurance policy, because I don't want to get any thinner. Some of you out there will probably understand this and others won't.)

 


Remove the fuel filter bracket


Loosen the hose clamps


Remove the fuel filter

Loosen the hose clamps and remove the old filter
5. Loosen the 10mm nut on the bracket that holds the fuel filter in place. Remove the bracket.
6. Before removing the fuel filter, go and open up your fuel cap on the side of the car to depressurize the fuel tank. This will minimize the fuel leakage and make these next steps very easy.
7. Using a flat head screwdriver, loosen the three hose clamps as much as they will go and slide them out of the way.
8. Get a smaller sized flat head screwdriver and pry it underneath the hoses to them loose. You will probably need to apply quite a bit of pressure since the clamps had the hoses pretty well bonded to the old fuel filter. Do not remove the hoses all the way. Just get them loose enough so you could slide them right off. Repeat this will all three hoses. (Note the final 4th smaller diameter hose will just come right off)
9. Position your bucket to catch any leakage and pull the old fuel filter off. Mind only leaked a little bit, so you shouldn't worry about getting drenched in fuel.

 


New fuel filter


Install the fuel filter


Proper orientation of the fuel filter

Install the new fuel filter
10. Take the old hose clamps off of the fuel hoses and install the new ones on (loosened of course).
11. Slide the new fuel filter onto the lines, make sure that the arrow faces forward and it looks oriented exactly like it is below, where you can read the text of the fuel filter when looking at if from below.

 


Tighten the hose clamps on the filter


Reinstall the bracket and shield


The old fuel filter

Tighten up the hose clamps and put everything back together
12. Using a 5mm socket, tighten the hose clamps on the fuel hoses in the same places that they were tightened before. Make sure they are tight, but don't try and over tighten them.
13. Reattach the fuel filter bracket and reinstall the shield.

(I also added a picture of the gas that came out of the old fuel filter. The dirt on the bottom was already in the bucket, but as you can see the gas definitely wasn't as clean as it could have been, so I recommend you change your filter if you never have!)

 

Conclusions

This is a simple do-it-yourself job and it should be completed every so often to ensure you're getting good gas mileage and not doing unnecessary harm to your engine. I'd recommend doing it every 40-60k miles, but every has their own opinions. It never hurts to make sure what is going into your engine is nice and clean, especially if you plan on owning your bimmer for a while. I know I'm planning on it!

 

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