E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > E46 BMW > General E46 Forum

General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 12-23-2009, 12:32 PM   #1
Papi325i
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tempe, AZ
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2004 330ci
Second coolant top-off in three months - Problem?

Hey everyone,

Quick question. I just topped off my coolant for the second time in three months. Should I be worried about this? I park in a garage and can't see any obvious leaks. Seemed a bit fast to me. Hope everyone has a great holiday.

Rudy

04 330ci
83k miles
So. California
Most recent service: Oil change in Oct.
Papi325i is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 12-23-2009, 12:38 PM   #2
eurodurance
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 63
My Ride: '03 330is, '87 535is
Send a message via MSN to eurodurance
How much coolant was missing each time?
__________________
- Augustus the 2003 BMW 330i
- Rachel the 1987 BMW 535is
eurodurance is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2009, 12:48 PM   #3
GoingNuts
Just Nuts
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: London
Posts: 7,253
My Ride: 2004 330Ci
Aggressive topping off will get you an exploding tank.
GoingNuts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2009, 12:48 PM   #4
Papi325i
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tempe, AZ
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2004 330ci
At most a quart each time, probably a little less. Both times the light would come on then go off; I filled each time to the max indicated by the floater.
Papi325i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2009, 12:50 PM   #5
GoingNuts
Just Nuts
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: London
Posts: 7,253
My Ride: 2004 330Ci
Then you have a leak.
GoingNuts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2009, 12:51 PM   #6
dmax
Registered User
 
dmax's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: NJ
Posts: 22,786
My Ride: '99 328i 1.04646 mu
after topping off, start car, let warm up to op temp, and check for leaks again...expansion tank is oft. cited source of first leak...most say it never just goes catastrophically stranding you, but it certainly has happened to some.

Cooling system is closed and pressurized so the loss of coolant is certainly something to concern yourself with...unless you don't mind spending thousands for new head gasket ($1200-1500) or cylinder head (another $1000?) or engine ($$$$)

D
dmax is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2009, 12:57 PM   #7
Papi325i
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tempe, AZ
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2004 330ci
Perfect. Hopefully my CPO warranty will cover it. Thanks guys.
Papi325i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2009, 11:43 AM   #8
dave330i
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Hopatcong,New Jersey
Posts: 559
My Ride: 2001 330i steel blue
Same issues for me...but I cannot find a leak, no cream in the oil either...I believe it is the tank though..will change it...rock auto has it for like $33
__________________
2001 330i 5sp Sport package ,steel blue, AA S/C , Remus exhaust, UUC Short shifter, UUC clutch stop, Braided brake lines, UUC Strut bar, Xenons, depo clears, Eagle Eye LED's
dave330i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2009, 11:50 AM   #9
Papi325i
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tempe, AZ
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2004 330ci
I found the leak last night. It's the coolant temperature sensor behind the left side of the radiator. Did some research and I have the classic ooze out the sides, and all the dried up coolant on the splash guard underneath. Hopefully that's just it; find out Monday.
Papi325i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2009, 01:55 PM   #10
hi its me alec
Registered User
 
hi its me alec's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 15,119
My Ride: BMWs + 1988 Pathy
Send a message via AIM to hi its me alec Send a message via MSN to hi its me alec
It's not very good to top these tanks off. The only time I've ever heard of them exploding is when people are having problems/leaks already, start topping off the fluid incorrectly (not saying you did it incorrectly or anything, but most people do) and overpressurizing the system.

Weird that it's leaking from your coolant temp sensor... was it ever removed, or did it just start leaking?
__________________
WTB: Complete e46 M3 rear end

hi its me alec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-24-2009, 02:31 PM   #11
Papi325i
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tempe, AZ
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2004 330ci
I've never touched it. But from what others have experienced I think the sensor's o-ring gets brittle and alllows coolant to leak under pressure. All the dried up fluid is right under it. Another one of those 25 cent flaws.

I know what you mean about accidentally topping off too high. Bmw's floater indicator isn't the most user friendly.
Papi325i is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2009, 02:50 PM   #12
Phoenix330ci
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 537
My Ride: 04 330Ci Convertible
Quote:
Originally Posted by hi its me alec View Post
It's not very good to top these tanks off. The only time I've ever heard of them exploding is when people are having problems/leaks already, start topping off the fluid incorrectly (not saying you did it incorrectly or anything, but most people do) and overpressurizing the system.

Weird that it's leaking from your coolant temp sensor... was it ever removed, or did it just start leaking?
Yeah, mine did this too. Check my threads. Chased around this coolant problem for some time. Mine never hit the tray though, just steamed out or evaporated before hitting the tray.

After replacing enough parts (all parts not covered under CPO) I asked the dealer to look at it when it went in there for the alternator. Ended up getting a new expansion tank bracke, radiator and thermostat. The only two part now not changed in the entier heating and cooling system, is the water pump and heater core. Everythng else is new. Oh and not one time did I ever see a leak, see anything on the lower pan or find a leak trail.
Phoenix330ci is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
coolant

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:16 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use