Radiator matrix changing plus expansion bottle removal/renewal for the M54 6 cylinder manual engines or similar.

Ok im going to start this how to with:
To do this job correctly you should end up with 4 torx T25 screws removed along the way, 3 short ones and 1 long one and 2 ordinary 10mm hex head screws. I will explain in the how to where these are and at what point they are removed. these are the only 6 screw fasteners that have to be removed the rest is either undoing various things or removing the special plastic rawplug type fasteners..
My camera went flat during the rad removal but I have improvised by taking relevant piccs to aid the rad removal proccess instructions, plus its easier to get your bearings of the location of things rather than taking stoopid angled blurry piccs and made it as idiot proof as possible.

Anything “ringed red” in the pictures is the T25 torx screw locations ..

firstly the undertray

undo the 7 phillips screws these are captive in the undertray and will not fall out usually..

undertray screws

secondly you have to remove the 3 rawplug type fasteners from the leading edge to release the undertray from the front valance a houshold fork I find does the job of pulling the centre up so the fastener releases its grip

undertray front valance fasteners

undertray removed

on the top undo the large jubilee clip fastening the MAF and air filter box to the induction hose and unplug the MAF connector

remove the front air duct to the air filter box by removing the 3 rawplug style fasteners same process as mentioned earlier and pull the duct off the air filter box

now remove the 2 10mm hex head screws from the air filter box securing it to the inner wing

the airbox can now be removed by tipping it up at the rear( MAF end) and pulling out and up and towards the rear of the engine.

We now have some good room to work

Next the fan unit facing the engine remove the T25 torx screw from the left hand top corner (this also secures the radiator matrix in position aswell but this cannot be removed yet) of the unit and the rawplug type fastener from the right hand side top corner.

left T25 torx location

right rawplug fastener location

Now unplug the 2 electrical plug connectors on the left hand side of the fan unit

The fan unit is now free to just pull up and out complete and put to one side..

Next the expansion bottle

Drain the expansion bottle via the drain plug underneath at the base of the bottle (do not undo the radiator drain plug by mistake or at this stage)..

drain plug

Firstly you need to remove the top hose pull the release clip out with a screw driver or long nose pliers at the thermostat end

Now the 2 same type quick release connectors a small and a large one connecting it to the expansion bottle and one to the rad (large one) the hose is ready to just pull off its quick release fittings and put hose to one side

Some thuggery and mauling is usually required to get these hose connectors to release there grip.
large hose connector

small hose connector

removed hose

From underneath the car there are 2 quick release hose connectors to remove in the same fashion mentioned earlier one on the front towards the base of the bottle and one at the base of the bottle. these are a bit trickier to get at. removal of the air duct to the alternator helps and gives more room (its only a push fit duct) to remove the bottom hose..

front bottle connector

bottom hose connector

you also need to unplug the bottle low level sensor

Finally there is 2 torx screws to remove to release the bottle and its bracket one is underneath at the base and it is fastened to side of the radiator matrix plastic assembly. The other is near the top on the side also fastened to the radiator matrix plastic assembly this one is tricky a flexible torx extension and (removal of the high beam headlight quick release bulb holder makes it easier). you will also need to just pop the bottom of the bottle bracket out of the locating dowel hole on the bottom edge of the rad assembly or the bottle will not come out ..

***NOTE***: if you are NOT renewing the rad matrix but just want to renew the exp bottle itself you can leave the bracket and the 2x T25 bracket screws in and the very bottom hose connected (as this hose is part of the bottle platform),and just pull the quick release clip (with the handle on it) out at the base of the bottle (next to the low level sensor) and pull it off its bracket platform.

I am showing you the location of the bracket dowel and 2 torx screws on the old rad as its easier for you to realise where they are in relation to everything else..

top exp bottle bracket torx screw position on rad

bottom exp bottle bracket torx screw position on rad and below it the dowel hole

The bottle is ready to come out just a little jiggery pokery and it should come up and out along with its bracket wher it has been attached to the rad assembly and is also hooked over the top of the rad assembly metalwork ..

Now you need to drain the radiator matrix via the drain plug
drain plug base of rad

You now need to unplug the temp probe in the left hand hose to the rad and release the quick release hose from the rad (this one I found extremely difficult in the end I released the hose at the thermostat end and removed the matrix with hose still attached still, (it’s a bit of a fidget but its up to you).
left hose and temp probe

There is now just 1 torx screw holding the matrix in position (the left one was removed when we removed the fan unit) the other is on the right hand top corner undo and remove this..

right torx screw

The matrix is now ready to remove, push it forward at the top towards the engine and pull it up and out of its wedge type fixing in the engine bay (if the left hose is still attached (as I did) its tricky but it can be removed complete with a little patience)..

You will need to swap over the bottom plastic assembly on the bottom edge on the matrix to your new matrix it just clips on..

That’s it refit in reverse order..

a 99p tin of silicon spray is handy to spray the internal hose quick release fittings with they then go back on nice and smooth and easy no mauling..

plus use you standard jack and lift the front slightly passenger side it gives better access to work on the expansion bottle removal from underneath etc..

NOTE :this procedure is different for automatics as they have a tranny cooling assembly and additional thermostat at the base of the expansion bottle and do not have an electric fan unit..