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so this is the second time the clutch fan blew. both times, every single fan blade was shredded and damaged the hood. anyhow, the first time i spent the same amount(although only the radiator, fan blade, and upper hose was replaced) fixing it- from a regular body shop(although they fix porsches, ferraris and lambos, i thought they knew what they were doing). now, the water pump is shot, the fan clutch is no good, and the radiator is punctured yet again(again, from the fan blades collapsing). apparently the water pump stopped, let the fan clutch continue, causing the fan blades to collapse and do damage to the hood and radiator. currently it's being fixed at 'bimmer motors', also known as 'the little garage' for locals.

they're charging me $180 for the fan clutch, $83 for the water pump, and $298 for the auto trans radiator- all above retail(before the 10% discount- so actually the total is $500 in parts). i told them i could get the parts for discount price from any BMW dealership(i used to work at a private dealership), but they said that if something were to happen, they'd be hesitant to fix the car- whereas if they buy everything for me at their price(i'm in the wrong business) and something happens, they'd fix it no questions asked- with a 1 year guarantee on anything cooling system related(even though i don't plan on keeping the car anywhere near as long).

so i figure rather than save $200 or $300 in parts, and worry about getting screwed if it happens again, i decided to just go on with it. labor is $322, which is decent. i'm really pissed off at this point. it's only been 7 months from when the fan first blew up, causing this mess. as soon as i fix this, i'm moving onto a newer Bimmer. there was a 2004 x5 4.4 there with the same problem, only his was much more severe- as belts and pulleys were destroyed and the damage to the hood was much worse from the fan exploding.

i apologize for the long post, just thought i'd share this annoying, very expensive nuisance of one of the early year e46 with you guys... just needed to vent :censor::banghead::ben::mad::help:
 

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I am curious and I am not sure its possible or not, but can you replace the fan with the electric fan?

So much easier and cheaper to work with.
Doable and quite easy at that, switching to a SPAL electric fan is very common with e36 guys. Less parasitic lag on the motor and a reduced chance of having a fan blade go through the radiator.

After working on 330's and 328's I've noticed that the 330 has an electric primary fan while the 328 has a belt driven one. It is quite possible that you could use the 330 radiator shroud/electric fan on a 328, that would definately be worth looking into.
 

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Doable and quite easy at that, switching to a SPAL electric fan is very common with e36 guys. Less parasitic lag on the motor and a reduced chance of having a fan blade go through the radiator.

After working on 330's and 328's I've noticed that the 330 has an electric primary fan while the 328 has a belt driven one. It is quite possible that you could use the 330 radiator shroud/electric fan on a 328, that would definately be worth looking into.
Yea i thought so, I have an electric fan I like it much better.

I seem to see the clutch fans on auto's and electric on manuals so you could probably find a 328 with an electric fan.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Doable and quite easy at that, switching to a SPAL electric fan is very common with e36 guys. Less parasitic lag on the motor and a reduced chance of having a fan blade go through the radiator.

After working on 330's and 328's I've noticed that the 330 has an electric primary fan while the 328 has a belt driven one. It is quite possible that you could use the 330 radiator shroud/electric fan on a 328, that would definately be worth looking into.
yeah, i heard this is very possible as well. if i were planning to keep the car, i'd definitely consider doing it. but right now, i don't really care as long as it gets fixed- and these guys are gonna make sure it doesn't happen again, heh.

and damn, i forgot i'll need to spend about another $300 to fix the hood, if it needs to be fully repainted(hopefully not, this dent is not that bad) :tsk:
 
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