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Old 03-10-2014, 05:47 PM   #1841
NoGuru
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After bleeding the coolant system, should I siphon out the excess coolant until the float just barely comes up?
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Old 03-10-2014, 05:54 PM   #1842
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More or less, yes.
The float has an upper limit and lower limit. Learn how to move it thru the range to get feel for where those are.
Siphon down to where the coolant level is at the max allowed according to the float stick.
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Old 03-11-2014, 08:16 PM   #1843
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ordered all the parts, im doing this overhaul myself crossing my fingers. thanks to everyone for this informative thread!
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Old 03-12-2014, 09:58 PM   #1844
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ugh, so long story short my water pump bearing has gone & in turn, broken my plastic impellar into like pieces & also lost somewhere down the coolant line. i was wondering if any others had this problem & knew any way of removing these ? once i removed my water pump i could only retrieve one piece so im guessing theres probably 10 more further down. thanks in advance for any suggestions. i thought of disconnecting at the radiator ?
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Old 03-12-2014, 10:11 PM   #1845
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Has happened to many before you, and I believe no one has sacrificed an engine because of this. I'd want to get as many connections opened to back flush and front flush things as much as I could. Upper and lower hoses and radiator and thermostat would all come off my car.
Stick a hose into the wp openings and let it flow. Drain coolant before you do this to avoid spilling it all over other parts of the engine and into the ground water.

Now you'll help us educate others who resist replacing their water pump prophylactically.
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Old 03-14-2014, 03:53 PM   #1846
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I've been fighting coolant issues since I got my car. I replaced the tank, cap, and bleed screw. I've done a few flushes and bleeds. I just had it leaking again so I took into a shop, they isolated it to around the tank and replaced the tank retainers, surrounding hoses, gaskets. Normal so far but they also said that it may be related to a head gasket leak causing pressure fluctuations causing parts to fail. It's a theory they proposed. I never head of that...is that possible/plausible?
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Old 03-14-2014, 04:51 PM   #1847
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You've really given us very little info to go on.
Where is it leaking from? At what rate?

Does your oil evidence any sign of coolant contamination?

Replaced the tank retainers? What are they? You should have replaced the whole tank.
What do you mean by surrounding gaskets?

Had your system pressure checked?

At first blush, I'm not getting a good vibe from your shop.
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Old 03-14-2014, 04:59 PM   #1848
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You've really given us very little info to go on.
Where is it leaking from? At what rate?

Does your oil evidence any sign of coolant contamination?

Replaced the tank retainers? What are they? You should have replaced the whole tank.
What do you mean by surrounding gaskets?

Had your system pressure checked?

At first blush, I'm not getting a good vibe from your shop.
Sorry, it was leaking from/around the expansion thank. That was the first thing I replaced. Then I replaced the cap and bleeder screw. Then I took into the shop to make sure I seated the tank correctly. That was around X-mas. I took it two days ago because the insane potholes in the city blew out my rear left spring and told them to fix the coolant leak as well. They replaced the expansion tank retainer, which they found coolant on and they replaced the surrounding hoses for good measure.

They did pressure check it and said there was no leak now but then said the bit about the head gasket.

I do my own oil changes and have not seen any contamination at all. Actually, they oil looked very clean the last time I changed it.
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Old 03-14-2014, 05:37 PM   #1849
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Time to consider a compression test if you want to eliminate the head gasket consideration.
You can do it yourself if you have the oil change skills.
Need a helper.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:58 AM   #1850
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Time to consider a compression test if you want to eliminate the head gasket consideration.
You can do it yourself if you have the oil change skills.
Need a helper.
I try to do what I can myself and leave it to the professionals when I can't figure it out.

So over the weekend (it's been -20 Celsius here) I noticed a leak at the front left of the car again. I wasn't sure if it was mine (park outside) so when I got home yesterday, I put fresh snow under the car. This morning sure enough there was coolant there, maybe even more leaking than before I took it in.

I looked into head gasket issues, symptoms, etc, over the weekend as well and did not find anything that leads to this kind of issue. I found more of the typical murky oil and white smoke. Guess I'll call the shop back but like you said, I'm starting to lose confidence in them.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:34 PM   #1851
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Yes, my car never leaked coolant into the oil when the head gasket was leaking either. I think what happens with the start of a leaking head gasket is that the leak starts cavitation in the coolant, and prevents circulation, then over pressurizes the cooling system.
Check that your cooling fan is coming on. I think my cooling fan failure caused the head gasket to leak because it failed and the motor began running just slightly hotter than normal.
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Old 03-18-2014, 10:56 AM   #1852
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Yes, my car never leaked coolant into the oil when the head gasket was leaking either. I think what happens with the start of a leaking head gasket is that the leak starts cavitation in the coolant, and prevents circulation, then over pressurizes the cooling system.
Check that your cooling fan is coming on. I think my cooling fan failure caused the head gasket to leak because it failed and the motor began running just slightly hotter than normal.
It's a cold winter so I haven't really heard the fan turn on. I also noticed that I haven't heard hte secondary air pump turn on. I don't have any codes. At this point, I'm just going to drive it carefully, keep an eye on the coolant and the temp, and be on the lookout for another car. It's unfortunate because I love this car.

I don't know if I can bring myself to get another BMW/Merc/Mini as I've been burned like this on all my German cars. I don't blame the cars but it's too risky for me to get one used. My circumstances when I got my e46 and W202 before that were such that I didn't have the time to do it completely right but I tried to find cars and get them inspected, but it wasn't good enough.

Anyway, that's for a post in another thread I guess. Thank you both for the help with this issue. This forum has been an amazing resource over the course of my E46 ownership.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:00 AM   #1853
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Unfortunately, my yellow coolant light came on this morning when I started the car. In a crunch for time, I filled it with distilled water and made my 25 mile commute to school. No problems. I'll be sure to check the coolant level this afternoon before I leave. Within the last year, I had my fan clutch and belts replaced when I got a new AC compressor. Mango, do you have any experience with the cooling system refresh kit from ECS Tuning? I'm interested in the level 2 kit with GenuineBMW parts.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:25 AM   #1854
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hi all, new here I've just bought a 2000 2.5 auto, 108k on clock, very little history...

i'm on a tight budget at the moment (buying a house) but got the car at a STEAL however with my E46s i'm aware of the cooling system, can you suggest the MUST changes as i cant't really afford a full over haul..thanks in advance
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:33 AM   #1855
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hi all, new here I've just bought a 2000 2.5 auto, 108k on clock, very little history...



i'm on a tight budget at the moment (buying a house) but got the car at a STEAL however with my E46s i'm aware of the cooling system, can you suggest the MUST changes as i cant't really afford a full over haul..thanks in advance


Do the fluid and make sure all the tubing isn't cracked from age. If so I'd replace that stuff. Also the expansion tanks crack if over filled but it's kind of common. I'd just buy all the pieces as you can afford them





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Old 04-01-2014, 01:36 PM   #1856
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Do the fluid and make sure all the tubing isn't cracked from age. If so I'd replace that stuff. Also the expansion tanks crack if over filled but it's kind of common. I'd just buy all the pieces as you can afford them
+1 ET and two front hoses first. What is the history of the WP?

Use the OBC hidden functions to make sure your thermostat isn't on its way to fail. Should run around 95 degrees.
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Old 04-01-2014, 03:26 PM   #1857
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Use the OBC hidden functions to make sure your thermostat isn't on its way to fail. Should run around 95 degrees.

do you know the process for that off hand? I wanna check that to.




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Old 04-01-2014, 05:00 PM   #1858
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do you know the process for that off hand? I wanna check that to.




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Google "e46 hidden OBC functions" and a PDF will show up.

I printed a copy out and keep it in the glove box.


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First Bimmer..."Miss December"...2000 323i, purchased Dec. 2013 w/82K on the clock. PM thus far...pads/rotors, belts/pulleys, complete CS overhaul, FCABs, plugs, autotranny/differential service, fuel pump, filter, and relay. Full front end refresh with LCAs and bushings, struts and mounts, inner/outer tie rods, sway bar endlinks and bushings.
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Old 04-01-2014, 05:20 PM   #1859
Stinger9
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do you know the process for that off hand? I wanna check that to.
see attached



Timing is tricky till you get used to it. Don't get discouraged. It works.

Last edited by Stinger9; 05-08-2014 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:15 AM   #1860
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Lol im ordering parts this afternoon.
I also included the mounting bracket for exp-Tank, thermostat for trans, was told thay fail also and the Cap.
Soon as I finnish I'll have it to the shop for trans pan drop.
Last month was Oil filter housing gasket and pressure hose for steering.
Is this common for 04 325i M56 @ 65K ? Seems like it has 90k
Bought it 7 months ago at a certified Bimmer dealer,
Also what u guys think of bavarian auto sport site for ordering

Thanks.
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bleeding, coolant, cooling system, diy cooling, expansion tank, lower hose sensor, overheat, radiator, radiator hose, temp sensor, temperature sensor, thermostat, water pump

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