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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 03-18-2014, 01:16 PM   #21
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My Ride: 01 325i
i highly recommend replacing it not only because the part is only $60 from the dealer and its a plastic component that wears and warps over time.
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Old 03-18-2014, 02:20 PM   #22
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Aleman, I can't speak for everyone, but I replaced mine because it was a 13 year old piece of plastic (a compound notorious for becoming very brittle with age). Cheaper to replace now than if it broke and the expansion tank fell off. Not necessary, but I recommend you do (depending on the year of your car, mine did last 13 years). I understand your apprehension since it is like $50-$60 for the BMW one. That seems a bit pricey considering the expansion tank must cost more to make but is only $10ish more to buy. My rule of thumb for stuff like this is that preventative maintenance is usually significantly less expensive than repair work. Plus it is easy to replace if you've already got the expansion tank off. Peace of mind is worth something too.

I hope that answer isn't too convoluted, and enjoy your e46!! I know i'm happy to have mine back. Went for a nice drive this morning, then washed, waxed and cleaned her up all pretty like
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Old 03-18-2014, 02:22 PM   #23
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Click image for larger version

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Here she is
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Old 03-18-2014, 02:51 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Volga View Post
Attachment 550528

Here she is
Car looks good man! White looks great on Bimmers! I, too, tend to take the 'While you're in there' approach to replacing good parts (but prone to breakage) during major teardowns and repairs.

I just got my XI a couple of weeks ago with no service records at all. The expansion tank looks pretty new and has a fresh paper part number sticker on the side like you typically see on replacement BMW parts. The coolant looks new, too, but the dealer says they didn't change it. The rest of the car looks very well maintained, so I wouldn't be surprised if some extensive work was done at some point. But without any history on the car, I am going to do the cooling system rebuild this spring anyway.

We usually takes big road trips during summer, and the last place I want to be is at a BMW dealership in BFE paying through the nose for repairs.

Is there anything I can look for in the system that would help to build confidence in the cooling system? I checked the hoses and they seem pretty strong, too.

Last edited by Aleman; 03-18-2014 at 02:53 PM.
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Old 03-19-2014, 07:38 PM   #25
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battery, cooling, cooling refresh, parts list, spark plug

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