E46 Fanatics Forum banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of September's Ride of the Month Challenge!
1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My Mobile Mech replaced a busted upper radiator hose (was basically falling off the low side)

Still overheated, OMG.... now he says its also the coolant reservoir tank and the electric cooling fan.

Are these ok to buy used here or... maybe I should just get new ones right?

He quoted me "around $300" which is probably pretty fair? (didn't think his charging me $100 for the hose replace was fair though, not sure why he charged so much when he admitted it was like 30 min... FYI he charged $90 to replace my right front window regulator which took over an hour (even though he actually did a crappy job on that one))

And besides FCPEuro, what was the other online shop that was great?
Will anyone here use like Advanced Auto Parts? I got the hose quickly from there, sure that wasn't a big deal.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,137 Posts
I would not risk any more potential damage to the engine. If you overheated it once there is a good chance you have a blown headgasket unless you shut it off immediately after it ran hot. If this was my car I would replace the entire cooling system on the vehicle. Radiator, water pump, thermostat, upper and lower hoses and the expansion tank. FCP sells a kit for $400 that has everything you need with OE parts. Do NOT use cheap aftermarket or used parts. They will fail and you will end up needing a new engine if you don't already. It's easier to replace the M54's than rebuilt them. YMMV. Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would not risk any more potential damage to the engine. If you overheated it once there is a good chance you have a blown headgasket unless you shut it off immediately after it ran hot. If this was my car I would replace the entire cooling system on the vehicle. Radiator, water pump, thermostat, upper and lower hoses and the expansion tank. FCP sells a kit for $400 that has everything you need with OE parts. Do NOT use cheap aftermarket or used parts. They will fail and you will end up needing a new engine if you don't already. It's easier to replace the M54's than rebuilt them. YMMV. Good luck.
So it's common that when one thing goes in cooling, all these others could also be damaged... I thought maybe he was just guessing... But he did pull the parts apart and took a deep look so... But you can never be sure what these mech are thinking...

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
65 Posts
Wait... so you used this mobile mechanic before and saw what a terrible job he did replacing a window regulator, and you thought well guess I better use him again to replace my cooling system after he messed up on it already and overheated my engine????

I just want to understand the thought process here...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,814 Posts
My Mobile Mech replaced a busted upper radiator hose (was basically falling off the low side)

Still overheated, OMG.... now he says its also the coolant reservoir tank and the electric cooling fan.

Are these ok to buy used here or... maybe I should just get new ones right?

He quoted me "around $300" which is probably pretty fair? (didn't think his charging me $100 for the hose replace was fair though, not sure why he charged so much when he admitted it was like 30 min... FYI he charged $90 to replace my right front window regulator which took over an hour (even though he actually did a crappy job on that one))

And besides FCPEuro, what was the other online shop that was great?
Will anyone here use like Advanced Auto Parts? I got the hose quickly from there, sure that wasn't a big deal.....
Just out of curiosity how did he determine the efan was a problem? You need to find that out. There are a few reasons why an efan doesn't run
and some of them have nothing to do with the fan. Could be something to do with HVAC system (that's the air con) and even a blown fuse.
You need more information. The expansion tank you can buy for about $30. It's an easy DIY.
Everything about replacing coolant system parts is easy. Spend some time on YouTube looking at DIY videos.
The 50sKid has them all covered. Ther's also a proper bleeding process you need to follow to get all the air out
when you have done t ejob.
But find out why he thinks the efan needs replacing. Get hime to explain his reasoning and come back and tell us.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,137 Posts
So it's common that when one thing goes in cooling, all these others could also be damaged... I thought maybe he was just guessing... But he did pull the parts apart and took a deep look so... But you can never be sure what these mech are thinking...

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using Tapatalk
With any older BMW it's wise to replace as much as possible when doing cooling system repairs. My E46 had 195k when I purchased it with the original water pump, expansion tank and radiator and the WP had been leaking for a really long time and the expansion tank looked pretty rough. With these cars you need to replace everything in the engine bay at some point especially over 100k miles. The biggest failure I see with these cars is the water pumps and expansion tanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Tell us in detail of when and how you discovered that it's overheated (where was the temp gauge needle or if the small red light at the upper right corner was ON).
Driving normally in a small city environment, nothing unusual there for the last twenty years.

Then there was some smoke coming out the hood, pretty light, could only tell mostly when I was going under 10 mph and at stop. This probably came from the leak from the house clip/connection getting compromised.

Then the temperature red light came on... I was about couple miles from work, which I had to get to, so as I drove there, the gauge shut down the red light and it went past the red market.

.......

I'll check FCP for the parts, I should have a credit there anyways...

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,137 Posts
Driving normally in a small city environment, nothing unusual there for the last twenty years.

Then there was some smoke coming out the hood, pretty light, could only tell mostly when I was going under 10 mph and at stop. This probably came from the leak from the house clip/connection getting compromised.

Then the temperature red light came on... I was about couple miles from work, which I had to get to, so as I drove there, the gauge shut down the red light and it went past the red market.

.......

I'll check FCP for the parts, I should have a credit there anyways...

Sent from my ONEPLUS A6013 using Tapatalk
You drove it with the temperature in the red even after the light came on? You probably have a blown headgasket.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,203 Posts
Then the temperature red light came on... I was about couple miles from work, which I had to get to, so as I drove there, the gauge shut down the red light and it went past the red market.
Uh oh, the red little light was ON and was driven 2 miles further instead of shut the engine off? Sorry to say but you had made a big mistake of not shut it off and called an Uber instead. High probability of having the engine cylinder head crack and even pulled threads of the engine block. I wish you good luck.
 

·
Registered
2001 325ci
Joined
·
1,227 Posts
Then the temperature red light came on... I was about couple miles from work, which I had to get to, so as I drove there, the gauge shut down the red light and it went past the red market.
good to know. not have experienced. that the red light would turn off (after on) when needle goes past the red mark, if that's what u mean.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Is it the 10, 12 or 16 inch?

And should I order the kit for $12 just to be safe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Uh oh, the red little light was ON and was driven 2 miles further instead of shut the engine off? Sorry to say but you had made a big mistake of not shut it off and called an Uber instead. High probability of having the engine cylinder head crack and even pulled threads of the engine block. I wish you good luck.
Even if under the oil cap is clean, no milky film?
 

·
Registered
2005 330xi Auto, 2006 330ci Vert Auto
Joined
·
363 Posts
I would urge you to do a compression and leak down test. They will help you understand whether you have issues with your head and/or head gaskets. This would help you decide whether it's worth your while to continue spending time and money on your car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
263 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I would urge you to do a compression and leak down test. They will help you understand whether you have issues with your head and/or head gaskets. This would help you decide whether it's worth your while to continue spending time and money on your car.
Mech said lets order the tank so he can test for the HG integrity... I am guessing you cant test if you dont have a working coolant reservoir?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,050 Posts
Then the temperature red light came on... I was about couple miles from work, which I had to get to, so as I drove there, the gauge shut down the red light and it went past the red market.
As others have mentioned, going that couple of miles was a mistake. I hope it isn't an expensive mistake (i.e. toasted engine.) Good luck.
 

·
Super Moderator
2004 325i automagic
Joined
·
3,489 Posts
Mech said lets order the tank so he can test for the HG integrity... I am guessing you cant test if you dont have a working coolant reservoir?
Like others have said, you need to do a compression test and in particular a leak down test. You can rent a compression tester for free from Auto Zone / OReillys and do yourself, but a proper leak down test will be more definitive.

A friend's 2003 325i had good compression numbers, but the leak down test showed leakage into the cooling system. Even the leak down numbers were good on that engine, but it had bubbles in the expansion tank from two or three different cylinders.

I assume expansion tank holds water? Confirm if there are HG issues first before spending any money.
 

·
Registered
2005 330xi Auto, 2006 330ci Vert Auto
Joined
·
363 Posts
Mech said lets order the tank so he can test for the HG integrity... I am guessing you cant test if you dont have a working coolant reservoir?
It's not necessary to have a new expansion tank to test the head gasket integrity. As others have noted, you can run a compression test and a leak down test with just some simple equipment and compressed air. Perhaps you need to find another mechanic who's equipped to do this for you if you do not want to do this yourself.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
Top