BMW Diesel Engines with the older metal swirl flaps run the risk of destruction if one of the metal flaps falls off. They get sucked in to the engine and destroy the cylinder head, block, turbo and intercooler resulting in a costly repair.
We see cars coming in having done over 150k but the swirl flaps haven’t caused an issue. The reason for this is they are covered in carbon. When you remove the carbon in place using a machine like the type Ed China promotes or Forte and Tec4 style cleaners you run the risk of allowing the flaps to fall off.
It’s our advice is that if you own a BMW diesel (we cannot speak for other makes) you only have a carbon treatment if there is little carbon build-up, as a preventative measure.
On car carbon treatment sounds great in theory but the latest trend is to use the process to clean cars heavily carbonised as a repair rather than preventative measure.
The attached video and pictures are of a BMW E46 Compact 2.0 Diesel with Swirl Flaps in place. It recently had a Carbon Clean in a garage because the EGR was carboned up.
The easy to remove carbon has been removed, but as you can see from the EGR valve there is still a lot of carbon present (that’s because the process is over rated) unfortunately its cleaned up the swirl flaps the same way and Cylinder 1 is now destroyed.
For the customer, this means the most cost effective repair is to replace the engine, turbo and intercooler. Earlier this week we saw a similar engine in a E60 5 Series which had swirl flaps and we decided to not remove the carbon in place of fear of the flaps falling off.
I suppose its goes back to what we always say. Pick a BMW Specialise for your BMW or MINI.