BMW High Pressure Fuel Pump Replacement – 1,3,5,7,X3,X5,X6,Z4 Series

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bmw high pressure fuel pump
BMW High Pressure Fuel Pump Replacement – 6 Hours
Advanced repair level

The BMW Repair Guide used this 2011 E90 335i for the following article.

Repair Summary
This article covers replacing the high pressure fuel pump in a BMW E90 with the N55 turbocharged engine. Even though we used a 2011 335i to perform this repair, this article can be applied to any BMW vehicle with the N54/N55 turbocharged engine including the 1,3,5,7,X3,X5,X6,Z4 series with minor modifications to the repair steps.

If your twin turbo N54/N55 engine is hard to start, is experiencing cylinder misfires, idling rough, and(or) is in “limp mode”, you may need a BMW high pressure fuel pump (HPFP) replacement.

It is well known that BMW has had issues with the direct injection system on its turbocharged 6 cylinder N54/N55 engines. These issues are directly related to failure of the high pressure fuel pump – or “injection exchange pump” – on popular models such as the 135i, 335i and 535i vehicles. For a complete list of BMW vehicles affected by premature failure of the high pressure fuel pump, please click the model box at the beginning of this article.

Causes for a BMW high pressure fuel pump failure are not always straightforward, although recent investigation has pointed towards poor engine oil service intervals or use of the incorrect engine oil (not BMW certified) as the likely culprits (see our article on choosing the correct engine oil for your vehicle). Since the pump is driven by the engine camshaft, improper lubrication can wreak havoc on its internal parts. Other causes for failure are fuel leakage and solenoid issues.

bmw high pressure fuel pump
2011 335I with the N55 turbo inline 6 engine.

A BMW high pressure fuel pump replacement is a fairly straightforward repair with one caveat: the intake manifold must also be removed from the engine in order to access the fuel pump mounting bolts. Since the intake manifold must be removed, you should also replace your intake gaskets which are also prone to failure if reused. You should also replace the o-ring on your throttle body since it must be removed as well.

***Avoid purchasing “cheap” generic branded fuel pumps on sites like Amazon or Ebay. We have dealt with multiple reports of these generic pumps failing with less than 1000 miles of driving on them. THESE PUMPS WILL FAIL. The BMW Repair Guide strongly recommends only installing a Genuine BMW pump for this repair.

Affiliate link disclosure – The BMW Repair Guide uses affiliate links in their site. For more information on affiliate links, please click here.

1. High pressure fuel pump (required) – A replacement pump is unfortunately very expensive…we had to purchase one for this article so we feel your pain. But we can pretty much guarantee you that if you install a cheap “knockoff” pump for a couple hundred dollars, you will be sorry before the vehicle puts 1000 miles on the odometer. The following pump is the same part installed at the BMW dealership and will last the remaining life of your vehicle with proper maintenance.

All N54 and N55 turbocharged engines

2. Intake manifold gaskets (required) – Since the intake manifold will need to be removed for this repair, you must replace its gaskets. Not replacing your intake manifold gaskets can cause a vacuum leak after reassembly.

3. Throttle body gasket (required) – Like the manifold gaskets, the throttle body gasket must always be replaced to avoid a vacuum leak after reassembly.

4. Fuel pressure sensor (optional) – The fuel pressure sensor is a vital component of the high pressure fuel system and has a high failure rate. Now is a great time to replace the sensor since it will need to be disconnected and removed with the fuel rail during this repair.

Section 1 – Cabin Filter Housing Removal 

The cabin filter housing is located at the back of the engine and must be removed to gain access to the intake manifold.

  1. Remove the five 8mm screws anchoring the upper filter housing. Remove upper filter housing from vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - remove the 8mm screws anchoring the cabin filter housing
  2. Unsnap and remove the two side covers (both left and right) from the lower filter housing and remove from vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - remove the right and left housing covers
  3. Remove the right and left electrical connections from the lower filter housing.bmw high pressure fuel pump - unplug the left housing electrical connections Unplug the right housing electrical connector
  4. Use an 8mm nut driver to remove the two screws anchoring the lower filter housing to the vehicle. There is a screw on both the right and left side of the lower filter housing.Use an 8mm socket wrench or nut driver to remove the screws anchoring the lower cabin filter housing
  5. Remove the lower filter housing from the vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - remove the lower cabin filter housing from the vehicle

 

Section 2 – Removing the air intake and throttle body
  1. Use a T20 torx bit (or phillips head screwdriver) to remove the two screws anchoring the intake duct to the front of vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the T20 screws anchoring the intake duct to the vehicle
  2. Unsnap the intake duct from the air cleaner assembly and remove from the vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Unsnap the intake duct and remove it from the vehicle.
  3. Use a flat blade screwdriver to remove the mass air flow (MAF) electrical connector from the front duct.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the mass air flow sensor from the front duct.The mass air flow sensor plug.
  4. Loosen hose clamp connecting air cleaner assembly to front duct. Unclip the lid of the air cleaner assembly and remove. Remove air filter.Remove the lid to the air cleaner assembly.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Unclip the lid of the air cleaner assemblybmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the air cleaner lid from the vehiclebmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the air filter element
  5. The lower air cleaner assembly simply unsnaps from the engine. Remove from engine bay.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Unsnap the lower air cleaner assembly from engine Pull up on the corners to unsnap the air cleaner assembly. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Unsnap the air cleaner assembly
  6. Unsnap the locking ring that connects the turbo charge air tube to the throttle body with flat blade screwdriver. Loosen hose clamp and remove T30 torx bolt anchoring tube to engine. Remove the air charge tube from throttle body (a flat blade screwdriver helps remove a “stuck” air tube from throttle body-see below).Unsnap the locking ring that connects the turbo charge air tube to the throttle body with flat blade screwdriver. Loosen hose clamp and remove T30 torx bolt anchoring tube to engine. Remove tube (a flat blade screwdriver helps remove from throttle body).bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the T30 torx bolt anchoring the charge tube. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Use a flat blade screwdriver to assist in removing the charge tube
  7. Remove electrical connector from charge air tube and remove tube from engine compartment.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Disconnect the electrical connection from the charge tube
  8. Remove the electrical connection from the fuel tank vent (breather) valve. Remove the plastic vacuum hose from the bottom of the valve by squeezing the plastic ring and pulling off. Finally remove the two T25 screws anchoring the valve bracket to the engine and tuck away safely.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Grasp the electrical connection to the fuel tank vent valve and squeeze. Pull the vacuum hose free of the vent valve. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the T25 screws anchoring the valve bracket. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Pull the valve bracket free from the intake manifold.
  9. Remove the four 10mm throttle body bolts and pull loose from intake manifold. Push to side out of the way.Remove the four 10mm bolts anchoring the throttle body.
  10. Grab the wiring harness and pull out and off of mounting bracket. Push out of the way.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Grasp,the wiring harness and pull it off of its mounting bracket.
  11. Disconnect engine block electrical connector behind fuel pump.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Disconnect the engine block electrical connection behind the fuel pump.
  12. Disconnect electrical connector from back of fuel pump.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Disconnect the fuel pump's electrical connection

 

Section 3 – Removing the intake manifold

The intake manifold does not have to be completely removed from the engine…it just needs to be removed from the cylinder head and stored out of the way so the high pressure fuel pump’s fuel lines can be accessed and removed. In fact we strongly recommend not removing any of the wiring harnesses connected at the bottom of the intake manifold during this repair. The pump is buried underneath the intake manifold…there is unfortunately no other way to access it.

  1. Remove the electrical connection from the sensor located on rear of intake manifold (see images below). A metal pick helps in releasing the connection.Disconnect the sensor from the rear of the intake manifold.
  2. Use a T25 torx t-handle to remove the wiring bracket from the rear of manifold.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Use a T25 torx bit to remove the wiring harness bracket
  3. The vacuum line that runs from the cylinder head cover to the auxiliary vacuum pump must be removed. Use an E25 external torx socket to remove the bolt securing it to the pump housing and then pull out and clear of intake manifold.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Locate the auxiliary vacuum pump line. Use an E25 external torx socket to remove the vacuum line from the auxiliary pump.
  4. Disconnect electrical connection from fuel rail pressure sensor. The pressure sensor is located at end of fuel rail near firewall of vehicle. ***The BMW Repair Guide recommends also replacing your pressure sensor when doing a BMW high pressure fuel pump replacement (please see our parts list to order the correct one).Disconnect electrical connection from fuel rail pressure sensor.
  5. Gather up all of the loose wiring on top of intake manifold and neatly bungee cord out of the way.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Use a bungee cord to neatly stow the engine wiring our of the way.
  6. Remove the seven 11mm nuts anchoring the intake manifold to the engine block.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the seven 11mm nuts anchoring the intake manifold to the engine block.
  7. Remove intake manifold and bungee cord out of the way. ***Note – avoid removing the wiring harnesses on bottom of intake manifold if possible. You should be able to remove intake manifold and bungee cord to hood without removing them.Remove intake manifold and bungee cord out of the way. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Intake manifold neatly stowed away with bungee cords.

 

Section 4 – BMW high pressure fuel pump removal

The BMW high pressure fuel pump can now be easily accessed and removed. Remember that you will need a long reach 5mm hex socket to reach the fuel pump bolts…a regular hex wrench will not work. Please see our tool list if you need to order one now.

  1. Using a 17mm open end wrench, loosen the nut attaching the rear fuel line to pump.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Loosen fuel line on rear of pump with a 17mm open end wrench
  2. Remove the two wiring harness bracket bolts using an E10 torx socket. The wiring harness bracket also serves as the rear fuel line anchor to the engine block.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the wiring harness bracket next to fuel pump.
  3. Pull rear fuel line loose from pump and tuck away safely.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Pull the rear fuel line clear from the fuel pump.
  4. Using a 17mm open end wrench, loosen the nut attaching the top fuel line to the pump.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Loosen the top fuel line with a 17mm wrench.
  5. Use a 17mm wrench to disconnect the top fuel line from fuel rail.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Disconnect the top fuel line from the fuel rail.
  6. Use a 10mm socket to remove the bolt anchoring the top fuel line to the engine block. Remove fuel line from engine.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Use a 10mm socket wrench to remove the top fuel line from the engine block.
  7. Use a 5mm long reach hex socket to remove the three bolts anchoring the fuel pump to the engine. ***You must use long reach hex sockets. You will not be able to remove the fuel pump mounting bolts with a small hex socket or hex wrench.You must use a long reach 5mm hex socket to reach the fuel pump bolts.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the three fuel pump mounting bolts
  8. Remove old fuel pump from vehicle.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Grasp the old fuel pump and remove it from the vehicle.
Section 5 – New BMW high pressure fuel pump installation

Reinstalling the new BMW high pressure fuel pump is simple…just be sure to install a new o-ring on pump (if it wasn’t shipped with one) and new gaskets on the intake manifold and throttle body.

  1. Verify the new fuel pump comes with a new o-ring before installing. If it did not come with a new o-ring, please see our parts list and order one now. ***DO NOT install new pump with old o-ring.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Install a new o-ring on the new fuel pump.
  2. Make sure the auxiliary vacuum pump (where fuel pump mounts to) is clean so there is a tight unobstructed fit with fuel pump o-ring.Thoroughly clean the auxiliary vacuum pump opening that the fuel pump mounts in.
  3. Install the new BMW high pressure fuel pump. Torque fuel pump mounting bolts to 14 Nm (10 ft-lb).bmw high pressure fuel pump - Install the new fuel pump and torque bolts to 14Nm (10 ft-lb).Properly torque the mounting bolts.
  4. Reinstall fuel lines in the following sequence: Top fuel line – a) Hand tighten to top of pump, hand tighten to fuel rail, LOOSELY install bolt in fuel line mount (just a couple turns), b) Final tighten to top of pump, then final tighten to fuel rail, c) Final tighten fuel line mount to engine block. Rear fuel line – a) Final tighten to back of pump. b) Reinstall wiring harness mounting bracket and tighten bolts.
  5. Reinstall intake manifold following above steps in reverse. Make sure to install new intake manifold gaskets. The old gaskets could leak if reused. Make sure to thoroughly clean the engine head with a rag before reinstalling the intake manifold (see images below). Torque the intake manifold nuts to 15 Nm (11 ft-lb).bmw high pressure fuel pump - Remove the old intake manifold gasketsThoroughly wipe down the intake ports in the cylinder headbmw high pressure fuel pump - Thoroughly wipe out the ports in the intake manifold.bmw high pressure fuel pump - Install the new intake manifold gaskets
  6. Reinstall the throttle body following above steps in reverse. Make sure to install a new throttle body o-ring when reassembling. The old o-ring could leak if reused. Torque throttle body mounting bolts to 8 Nm (70 in-lb) (6 ft-lb).bmw high pressure fuel pump - Install a new o-ring in the throttle body.New o-ring properly installed in the throttle body.
  7. Optional step – install new high pressure fuel rail pressure sensor. Use an adjustable wrench to remove old sensor from fuel rail. Install new sensor and tighten (do not over tighten…just make snug).bmw high pressure fuel pump - If your are replacing the old fuel pressure sensor, remove it from the fuel rail with an adjustable wrench. bmw high pressure fuel pump - Removing the old fuel pressure sensor. bmw high pressure fuel pump - A new fuel pressure sensor. bmw high pressure fuel pump - The new fuel pressure sensor installed.
  8. Reinstall the air intake assembly.
  9. Reinstall the cabin filter housing.
  10. Start car and test system. It will take the engine a few cranks to get the fuel into the cylinders so vehicle can start.

 

BMW High Pressure Fuel Pump Repair Finished
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us. And congratulations for Doing It Yourself!

The Repair Difficulty Level displays graphically how challenging the repair is, from easy to advanced. Easy repairs usually require very few tools, have short repair times and do not require jacking and supporting the vehicle. As the difficulty level rises, expect the repair to demand more time, specialized tools, and better understanding of mechanics to complete the job.

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