▶ The chillier mornings had given this owner cause for concern as his 2006 BMW 520d was not starting as easily as it used to. When we told him that the glow plugs needed replacing, he thought the job would be a simple process taking about half-an-hour. However, the book time for the job is actually 1.5 hours.
The reason for this is that the inlet manifold needs to be removed to allow access to the heater plugs. After we tested the system and found two heater plugs had failed, the owner agreed that, as the manifold needed to be removed, it made sense to replace all four plugs as a preventive measure against future problems. It also made sense to replace the manifold gaskets, which were likely to have hardened. The job went smoothly and the old heater plugs came undone OK, which is not always the case with these cars.
The inlet manifold has to be removed to access the glow plugs.