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Old 11-11-2008, 04:01 PM   #1
williebeamer02
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Exclamation ANTIFREEZE/COOLANT??? Burning smell - coolant low - any suggestions???

A few days ago my coolant sensor light came on. The car was running just fine. I drove home (10 minutes) and the car was parked in the garage over the weekend. (Nothing appeared to be wrong at all)

A few days later I checked the coolant level and it was pretty low so I topped it off with the bmw brand coolant mixed 50/50 with distilled water. (It only needed about 32 ounces until the guage popped up)

The coolant level is fine now, the light isnt on but when I start the car it sort of stalls/shakes, and there is a wierd burning smell.

I am not sure if there is a leak, if i blew a head gasket, if something cracked, or if it is something else. I am due for a coolant flush but I am not sure if that has anything to do with this?

Has anyone else experienced anything like this? If so...please share!

Possible SOLUTIONS to this problem are welcome as well!!!
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Old 11-11-2008, 04:16 PM   #2
willsbma
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Blown head gasket will pour smoke out of the tailpipe. If you can get it running give it a little rev and watch the exhaust. Did your temp hit the red? Check the oil on your dipstick for anything weird looking.
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:31 PM   #3
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^ not always true...u can have a blown headgasket without having smoke out the tail pipe.

you need to have your cooling system pressure tested asap. scan the car for any codes, pull the dipstick and see if it looks milky
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:38 PM   #4
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Cool

I'm having the same problem with my E45 323i, I took it into my friends Indy shop and he put it on a lift for me and we determined the thermostat housing and the water pump seal are both leaking. I was hoping it was just a bubble in the system but at this weekends club DIY I'll be changing out the Water pump and the thermostat. There's coolant discoloration all around the water pump and the thermostat housing. I last changed my water pump and thermostat at 210,000 miles, I'm now at 275,000 miles. Just my two and a half cents worth. Happy Motoring.
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Old 11-11-2008, 06:41 PM   #5
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damn thats alot of freaking miles lol
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Old 11-11-2008, 07:00 PM   #6
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I am not sure if I should continue trying to run it and see if smoke comes out of the tailpipe because each time i turn it on it begins to shake like it may die and produces a weird burning like smell. No smoke anywhere from what I can see...maybe i am not running it long enough. Thinking about getting a compression test done...not really sure what to do though. I hope its not a blown head gasket...
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Old 11-11-2008, 07:03 PM   #7
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a compression test could work. i would recommend getting it pressure tested to see where the coolant is going.
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Old 11-11-2008, 07:13 PM   #8
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You wouldnt happen to know where I can buy a DIY test like this or is it just best to leave it to a mechanic that knows what he is doing
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Old 11-12-2008, 07:01 PM   #9
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Just pulled the dipstick and it looked fine. Then started then engine and gave it some gas and a little bit of white smoke came out of the tailpipe but the car temperature stayed cold. I probably ran the car for about 5 minutes or so. Any ideas?
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Old 12-24-2008, 12:16 AM   #10
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Have you fixed her up yet? The coolant could be a coincidence. Maybe a vac leak? That could cause the shaking/stalling. Stalling could also be a cam sensor...
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Old 12-24-2008, 12:40 AM   #11
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She seems to be running fine, had to bleed the system (loosen the radiator screw) and it has been all good since
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Old 12-24-2008, 02:05 AM   #12
tony325ci_51
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Keep a VERY close watch on temp guage, coolant level, oil level and for mayonnaise deposits under the oil filler cap.
Sounds like it could be the beginning of a head gasket problem to me.
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