The following article gives detailed instructions on replacing the intake temperature sensor in a BMW M60 8 cylinder engine. Even though we have used a 1995 840ci to perform this repair, this article can be applied to any vehicle with the M60 engine including the E32 740i and E34 540i and minor modifications.
Replacing a faulty BMW M60 intake temperature sensor can help cure a rough cold idle, engine misfires and acceleration issues.
The BMW M60 8 cylinder engine contains a plethora of sensors, all of which feed data to the vehicles DME (engine control module). This processed sensor data is used to control most of the M60 engine’s systems, especially the fine tuned delivery of air and fuel to the cylinders.
The BMW M60 intake temperature sensor is one of the most overlooked, yet critical engine sensors on the 8 cylinder motor. Its job is to continuously monitor the ambient air temperature inside the intake manifold prior to it entering the cylinders. This ambient temperature data is sent to the M60’s DME where it is used to control the cylinders air/fuel mixture, optimizing the vehicle’s performance and emissions.
Like with most electronic parts in the engine compartment, age, oil contamination and brutal heat conditions take their toll on the BMW M60 intake temperature sensor eventually causing it to malfunction. A failing sensor will read the intake air temperature incorrectly (or not at all), causing the air/fuel ratio to be miscalculated. Indications of a failing intake temperature sensor are often unmistakable; a rough cold idle, very poor cold engine acceleration, engine surges when warm, cylinder misfires and overall bad fuel economy.
Replacing the BMW M60 intake temperature sensor is a fairly simply procedure for the home mechanic, and can save an expensive trip to the repair shop. Please note that there are many other issues within the BMW M60s intake system than can cause a rough idle and poor performance…sometimes happening simultaneously. Even though the BMW M60 intake temperature sensor is inexpensive and easy to replace, it is good practice to do a thorough diagnosis of the intake system prior to completing this repair.
1. Intake temperature sensor (required) – Always use high quality sensors on your BMW from a reputable supplier. Cheap aftermarket sensors have a high failure rate and at the end of the day, really don’t save any money. We give you a couple of great choices based on your brand preference and budget.
2. Air filter (optional) – Compliment your new intake temperature sensor with a fresh air filter. Help your V8 breathe easier by supplying fresh
The intake temperature sensor is very easy to replace on the M60 engine. The repair will go a lot easier if you take the few extra minutes and disconnect all of the surrounding electrical connections first.
- Remove the four 10mm nuts anchoring the top engine cover. Remove cover from engine compartment.Locate the BMW M60 intake temperature sensor. It is on the front right side of the intake manifold next to the throttle body.
- Disconnect the idle control valve by pinching in the metal release clip and pulling the plug free.
- Next, disconnect the throttle body.
- Use a flatblade screwdriver to raise the metal locking clip on the throttle valve switch. Pull the plug free and gently stow out of the way.
- Disconnect the 1st and 2nd engine wiring harness plugs by squeezing in the metal locking clips and pulling them free.
- Pull all of the electrical connections and the throttle cable out of the way so you have clear access to the intake temperature sensor.
- Unplug the BMW E60 intake temperature sensor by depressing the metal locking clip and pulling the plug free. Sometimes the locking clip is on the backside of the plug making it difficult to depress…if it is, try using a metal pick to push it in as shown below.
- Use a 19mm crow’s foot or open end wrench to remove the sensor from the intake manifold. Notice the engine oil residue on the end of ours.
- Spray the electrical connection with CRC Electronic Cleaner to remove any old oil or residue.
- Install the new sensor. If you are using a 19mm crow’s foot, torque the sensor to 10 Nm (7.5 ft-lb). If you don’t have a crow’s foot and are using an open end wrench, tighten the sensor until it is snug. DO NOT over tighten the sensor…you can easily break it.
- Reassemble the engine making sure not to miss any of the plugs that were disconnected.