Q: BMW 528i 2000 (E39) fault codes P1523 and P1397

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Hi, I have a BMW 528i 2000 (E39), that has the fault codes P1523 and P1397 (it takes several days of driving to have the codes show up after I erase them). The exhaust camshaft sensor has been changed recently (a few months ago). I was wondering if the intake camshaft sensor could be responsible for these codes or would it be more likely that the VANOS is the issue and need to be repaired (like with the beisansystems seal kit). Or does it indicate something else completely. The car is running smoothly most of the time, but it is true that the acceleration is a bit sluggish when the car is cold. Spark plugs also have been replaced recently.

thanks,

Alex

My car has 226000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The vehicle should be inspected and diagnosed first hand but I can tell you broadly that if the seals on the VANOS system are original they should be replaced due to the age and mileage you are reporting. Camshaft position sensors can be easily tested using an appropriate scope and, more likely than not, yours is fine. The seals though (consisting of o-rings and other components) are notorious failure points. Seals have a limited lifetime in any event but as an internal engine component, operating life is even shorter. To schedule a diagnostic, as well as seal replacement, please use YourMechanic’s service request page and just indicate on the page, "VANOS system seal replacement" and a certified mechanic will provide the estimate. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic because we want you to make the most of your repair dollars and help you to get the best possible results.

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