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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!

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Old 11-24-2012, 03:14 PM   #1
DillonMpower
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Is Boil over a big problem ?

i talked to a few guys about coolant in there cars, and I have heard a magnitude of things such as: water its plenty fine (distilled of course), "water wetter" helps but only in certain cars, anything gold (coolant wise) will work from german cars because it contains an oil additive such as the blue stuff from BMW, and if a car runs "hot" then over boil can be a real problem for disappearing coolant.

last question if boil over is a real problem can make water evaporate in a closed system ?

getting ready to do a fluid swap in my car and need some info on coolant misconceptions
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Old 11-24-2012, 04:15 PM   #2
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You think way to much about this.

Clear your head , go grab a gallon of Prestone and a gallon or water (dont matter distilled or tap) and change your coolant.

Dont think to much about such simple things.

PS, the car will never run hot or boil over if your cooling system works properly. Dont matter what coolants in it and what color it is.
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Old 11-24-2012, 04:34 PM   #3
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OP,

Blocked is right that you're overthinking this, but, as far as I know, only one coolant other than OE meets the specs for our car...that's Zerex G-05 I think...but don't quote me.

That said, the most important thing is to change it as per the bottle--I think OE says every 3 years.

Drain completely from engine block drain, rinse with straight distilled by filling up the system with it and driving a bit with heater on...let car cool and drain it. If it's filthy, do it again...then replace crush washer and use OE/distilled mix.

Blocked is right that changing it is more important than what you use...sort of...but there are some issues with gunking if you mix the wrong coolants...and then there are additives that bmw coolant has that are compatible with all the materials in our system. For many here, using OE is just the way to go...and in many ways, avoids many issues.
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:15 PM   #4
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If you have salts building up around the faucets in your house (as I do), don't use tap water. The salts will precipitate out and coat various places of your cooling passages that you really don't want caked with salt. Distilled water costs less than $1/gallon at Kroger. If you use it, you won't be wondering if your tap water is okay to use.

Also, when removing the drain plug from the block, keep a firm grip on it. The pressure of the water coming out is a bit more than what you get from draining oil, and it will push the plug out of your fingers and lodge it some place around the engine mount that will take hours to find.

I use BMW coolant because it's not that much more expensive than any other coolant, and the local BMW dealer is five miles from my house. Plus, the Bentley manual warns against using coolants containing phosphates. There's a LOT of debate about coolant on this site. Use whatever you want. Just don't leave it in the car for 10 years.
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:33 PM   #5
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+1 on the distilled water. It's too cheap, you leave it in there too long, and minerals can cause too many problems not to spring for the cheap gallon of distilled!

Most all coolants in this country contain no phosphates any longer. I use Prestone that says good for all cars on their site and the bottle.

http://prestone.com/products/antifre...st#product-378
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:41 PM   #6
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Don't use prestone or any brand autozone carries. They are too acidic for our alum blocks over time.
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:54 PM   #7
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Funny statement because I check my coolant for pH regularly and it always tests neutral.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:44 PM   #8
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Old 11-25-2012, 01:47 PM   #9
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Don't use prestone or any brand autozone carries. They are too acidic for our alum blocks over time.

Lol. Can you prove that???

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Old 11-25-2012, 05:42 PM   #10
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Prestone 50/50 (the one with no silicates, phosphates and other "-ates") since 2009 and 53k miles on the 325. No problems and no corrosion when I opened her up recently for a new water pump.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:24 PM   #11
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Lol. Can you prove that???

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No. But you also can't prove using ACEA A3/B3/LL-01 spec oil is better for our cars than conventional oil.

You just do certain things because it's spec'd or recommended by the manufacturer. A whole $19? Wow. Can't put food on the table, now. Aw, shucks.

OP, my advice to you:

1) Replace the entire cooling system.

2) Use Genuine BMW coolant and distilled water only.

The right way costs pennies.

The wrong way be fine, but on the other hand *may* cost you your engine.

You pick.
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:40 PM   #12
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Use distilled water and BMW coolant (or equivalent spec).

bleed the system properly
top off as needed
change it every few years
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Old 11-25-2012, 08:52 PM   #13
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I was at the auto parts store the other day and this place had all kinds of coolant. jaguar, bmw, mercedes, toyota... and the generic stuff!

You could be cute and use the Xerex G-05, but it's like $2 cheaper.



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Old 11-25-2012, 09:03 PM   #14
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You could be cute and use the Xerex G-05, but it's like $2 cheaper.
How did you know my friends all tell me I'm pretty cute?
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:09 PM   #15
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How did you know my friends all tell me I'm pretty cute?
I may be 3,000 miles away but DMAX gives me updates on all the NY/NJ fanatics.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:20 PM   #16
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That does explain quite a bit then.
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:47 PM   #17
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No. But you also can't prove using ACEA A3/B3/LL-01 spec oil is better for our cars than conventional oil.

You just do certain things because it's spec'd or recommended by the manufacturer. A whole $19? Wow. Can't put food on the table, now. Aw, shucks.
I sure can. I want to start an oil conversation , just tell me so...

But proving that synthetic oil is better then dino shouldn't take long...
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Old 11-27-2012, 09:49 PM   #18
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I sure can. I want to start an oil conversation , just tell me so...

But proving that synthetic oil is better then dino shouldn't take long...
Plenty of people here run conventional oil in their cars and have well over 200,000 miles. Sure properly spec'd synthetic oil is better than conventional oil in demanding conditions and you and most of us are willing to spend more money for it.

Why aren't you willing to spend a few more bucks for the proper coolant w/ distilled water?

Wrong car for you, my friend if you continue to keep taking shortcuts like that.
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:12 PM   #19
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G-05 is for American cars, though I hear it is used in Mercs as well. I think G48 is the "modern" OE BMW fluid. I would probably just use the regular 'ol off-the-shelf Zerex green:



Tap water is fine, distilled is better.

This isn't as complicated, or as life-or-death as many members would lead you to believe. The horse has also been beaten to death here.

Running conventional oil is foolish, there is no net gain in an engine designed to work with synthetic. Take advantage of the much longer service intervals!
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:22 PM   #20
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G-05 is for American cars, though I hear it is used in Mercs as well. I think G48 is the "modern" OE BMW fluid. I would probably just use the regular 'ol off-the-shelf Zerex green:



Tap water is fine, distilled is better.

This isn't as complicated, or as life-or-death as many members would lead you to believe. The horse has also been beaten to death here.

Running conventional oil is foolish, there is no net gain in an engine designed to work with synthetic. Take advantage of the much longer service intervals!
Interesting thing is the S52B32 was designed to run on conventional and was even spec'd for conventionial. For the later 98 and 99 years (maybe just 99--i forget) BMW spec'd Genuine 5W-30 synthetic for the same engine. This was when BMW was redoing their whole service recommendations and swtiching to lifetime bla bla
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