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Old 10-16-2009, 12:52 AM   #16
Dammerung
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Mlue1 is right..sry i thought it was a similar engine to the 540. i guess it doesnt have gasket linings around it. I guess its just 'sweating' then...ie not leaking but slight amounts oozing out and then evaporating.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:28 AM   #17
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I would put my money on air in the system. Bleed it with the lil plastic cap infront of the expansion tank.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:14 PM   #18
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If this is caused by air in the system, then there is a leak some where. The OP says the problem comes back after a while (lets say for argument every 6 months), he should have to bleed the system every 6 months...who else has to do this... something else is wrong.

EDIT: The best thing is to have the system pressure tested, that will show any leaks that are there.
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Last edited by MLue1; 10-19-2009 at 01:17 PM. Reason: Adding statement
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Old 10-19-2009, 02:54 PM   #19
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trapped air deep in the system can cause this if it moves around. you have to make sure it is bled thoroughly. sometimes reving the engine can bring any air trapped to the release valve to get it out. as mentioned above - pressure testing it will flush out- pardon the pun. any leak which may be there.

check the temp sensor, possible intermittent problem, check continuity at the plug side and check check for corrosion both on the senor and plug connectors. To check the senor, disconnect it while the engine is at operation temp running. if the gauge changes then you know it's the sensor. If the gauge doesn't change then most likely it is your gauge. Either or can act up sporadically to give you a false reading.
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Old 11-05-2009, 10:33 AM   #20
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I also feel the problem is related to air in system. Carefully bleed coolant through the bleed screw on expansion tank with rag over it when hot. Then the next morning when coolant is cold (before starting car) add a bit more coolant until the float in the expansion tank is at the right height.

Thats what I did when my e39 540 returned from Maranello BMW with a low coolant warning message. Guess if I wanted things done half a$$ I would have done it myself in the first place... Returned to Maranello next morning to be given complemantary jug of coolant to do my own bleeding.... Some customer service.
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Old 11-12-2009, 05:29 PM   #21
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Sorry for the slow response... I went ahead and bled the sytem and there was definately air in the system. I think I got most of it out and it has been fine since (only a few days though) I'll check it again in about a week to see it air has gotten back in somehow. If so the next thing is to find the source leak. Thanks for all the great advice.
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Old 11-13-2009, 10:40 PM   #22
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Get this.... after bleeding the air earlier in the week it was running fine. this evening I got stuck behind a garbage truck and let it idel to see what would happen.

Sure enough it started to overheat. I turned the bleed screw to see if there was more air and there was tones. after about 15 seconds of air bleeding i tightend it up and looked under the car. it started pissing coolant perhaps 1/2 to 1/4 of a leter. I was night so I havn't been able to see where it was comming from but it was in the area of the water pump. i cracked the bleed screw and there was nothing but air comming out.

luckily I was only a block from the house. I'll take a look in the AM but suspect the water pump again. 3 in 3 years.....rrrrrrrrrr!

I may have to let her go..... can't risk the wife and baby getting stranded in the montreal winter. Any interest let me know '97 528i 175Km
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Old 11-14-2009, 01:28 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtDepth View Post
...I may have to let her go..... can't risk the wife and baby getting stranded in the montreal winter...
I woudn't chance it either especially with a new born! Good luck with what ever you decide to do!

What type of coolant is in your car? I was in conversation with a BMW dealer technician the other day who was doing a side job for a buddy. He was related to us about the different types of coolant, he mentioned that the small shops sometimers use high tox coolants that are very strong and an corrode the inside of the engines and can cause pin hole leaks in the aluminum and the mating surfaces in the cooling system if left in operation for a very long time.


He stood by the use of BMW coolants but he mentioned that there a few aftermarket coolants that were good substitutes, of course I was relieved when he mentioned that the coolant (Xerex G-05) that I use was OK.
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Old 11-19-2009, 11:38 AM   #24
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not sure what coolant. Took 'er to the shop this am and waiting on a diagnosis. they are thinking the thermostat but it could also be the head. I'll keep you posted. not sure if i'll fix the head if that turns out to be the problem.... might consider selling to someone that wants to take it on as a projet.
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Old 11-20-2009, 01:33 PM   #25
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Ok, dude relax, i ll make it easy for you.

You said its leaking coolant, here is your fix:

1. check rad for cracks, pin holes etc, it might be ready to be replaced ( $300 from partsource, no big whoop, you can even install it yourself)- This will show when the engine is running.

2. check rad hoses for leaks, again while running

3. Sounds like your waterpump is toast, no biggie, replace it

4. Check the fan clutch, might need to be replaced too.

You can get all these parts off ebay/ partsource fairly cheap. This is a easy job to do at home, minus the waterpump you should be able to handle it with the huge amount of diys about it on bimmerforums.com and other sites

Thats all you really need to do and you should be up and running in no time.
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Old 11-20-2009, 03:47 PM   #26
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Thanks for the suggestion but not really helpful.... 1-4 have been done.

By way of update... I just got back from the shop and they found that the thermostat housing was leaking and one of the seals looked suspect. I had them change the whole unit (seals, housing and threw in a new thermostat for good measure). flushed the system and ran it for an hour without any problem.

The real test now will be to see if somehow air still gets into the system. I'll check it out in a week or two and let you know.
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Old 11-20-2009, 03:50 PM   #27
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i dont understand how air can get into your system from the thermostat. Aren't the coolant lines around the thermostat pressurized? Since BAR of cooling system > BAR of atmosphere, how can air get in?
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:17 PM   #28
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Have you had a leak down test done on the car?
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:19 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtDepth View Post
Thanks for the suggestion but not really helpful.... 1-4 have been done.

By way of update... I just got back from the shop and they found that the thermostat housing was leaking and one of the seals looked suspect. I had them change the whole unit (seals, housing and threw in a new thermostat for good measure). flushed the system and ran it for an hour without any problem.

The real test now will be to see if somehow air still gets into the system. I'll check it out in a week or two and let you know.
Thermostat is no biggie at all, you should be fine now
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Old 11-29-2009, 01:28 AM   #30
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I think I may be able to shed some light but I'll leave it up to you to decide.

I had similar issues with my 98 528i. I went through the whole process you have. I went so far as to change the head gasket as it had started to leak after all the over heating.

Eventually I took it into Bimmersport and Charlie, after some more troubleshooting, hooked up a unique little machine that literally SUCKS the air out of the system, he actually had to borrow the tool from his neighbour but now he has one of his own. The problem was a pocket of air that refused to be expelled by the standard way of doing it.

It was pretty cool actually cuz after he flushed the coolant out he hooked up this machine to the reservoir cap and turned it on air started literally spewing out of it, like A LOT, this thing kept going for a good minute or two.

Ever since then I've had ZERO overheating problems and this was like 2 years ago.

Cheers!
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