*I had this all posted on a link to another website, but that site has since gone down, so I finally got around to posting it up directly on here.
I appreciate all the info I've received from this forum and it's my turn to give back a little. Last week I changed my spark plugs by following directions I found on here, but I had to reference other engine model directions. I just thought I'd document my own install for my specific engine type and to give a few better pictures then the factory .pdf directions that you find when you do a search. I know it's a straight forward thing, but for some people that are new to working on their cars, the more detail the better. So here goes:
First off, I order my spark plugs from: www.pelicanparts.com
Once you select BMW>5 Series>5 Series E60>Choose your model>Under Basic Maintenance you can find the spark plugs
Spark plus from the dealer should run around $20 each. From Pelican Parts I bought the NGK's which were $11.75 each, they also have the Bosch for cheaper. Both the NGK's and Bosch, according to Pelican Parts, are OEM suppliers. I've also heard accounts from reading threads that some people had NGK's while others had Bosch in their cars, mine had Bosch. If you want to stick with the whole German theme of the car, you can get the Bosch, I just got the NGK's because they were a little more expensive and so I thought they might be for a reason. I know, not the best logic.
I got this site from a friend of mine who owns an E39 5 series and he orders all his parts from there and I've also seen the name thrown around on this forum. If you're located in Southern California, they have a warehouse in El Segundo and so shipping usually takes a day or two. They offer free shipping for orders over $75, so if you're like me and ordering 6 plugs, you may need one more item to push it over. You can get an oil filter or microfilters because you have to take off the microfilter box to change the spark plugs anyway.
Now, the list of tools:
-(6) spark plugs
-Socket wrench with spark plug socket, 13mm socket, 10 mm socket, and extension.
-Anti-seize lube or oil
Here is my tool box, gotta love Craftsman:
My car, waiting:
Ok, now to the real work pics. You want to take off the microfilter first. You need to loosen the 13mm hex nut near the passenger fender. I say loosen because it will not actually come out of the box, on the other side is sort of a latch mechanism, so you just have to turn it to open it. You will see a few more of these inside. You can also disconnect the plug, but if you'd like you can wait to do it once the top is off, might be easier.
Now on the other side is a long latch you just push to unhitch it:
Ok, now you've taken the lid off of the microfilter, should look like this:
Now to take off the bottom portion of the box, you need to loosen 3 more hex bolts. It's going to be the same deal as the first hex bolt, they will not come out, you just turn and loosen them:
After loosening those, you need to take out the screw with an allen wrench. This is attached to the chassis of the car near the top of the suspension:
You also need to take off this plastic trim piece under the hydraulic shock. It'll bend so you can just wiggle it and bend it in half to pull it out: