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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 03-11-2012, 12:02 AM   #1
xii guy
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Unhappy HELP, Coolant loss, Getting Hot

Ok,

I have a 2003 330xi - Having some issues here, the car is getting hot if I do a lot of town driving and sit, I've noticed the temp gauge goes up then back to 50% straight up and down. Well. Sometimes my low coolant light comes on.. I go somewhere today and my car is getting hot from sitting and idling, I pop the hood and see coolant leaking out of my cap - My cap is tight though? Ive already replaced the crap that the overflow screw is attached too, with the hoses. I seem to be putting coolant in it atleast once a week no more than 2 times. I have never had the temp gauge in the red but its been close... What could this be? I am dumb founded..... Car has 149k miles - NO check engine lights and passes every OBD scan.

Any ideas? Thanks
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Old 03-11-2012, 12:38 AM   #2
Hergs7
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check the o-rings on the cap. just replaced the cap on mine a few weeks ago and it stopped the leak. good luck!
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:29 AM   #3
xii guy
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my o rings have fell down in the resovoir
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:32 AM   #4
Solidjake
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Might be a good time to replace your expansion tank and cap. It will cost around $80-90 for both and it's simple to do. Use BMW coolant.
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:39 AM   #5
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can i just get the orings out and use the same tank?
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Old 03-11-2012, 11:02 AM   #6
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Stop driving the car until the leak is sorted. Just stop.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:05 AM   #7
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Stop driving the car until the leak is sorted. Just stop.
PLUS 1 on this... You DO NOT want ot overheat this engine!

I would replace the e-tank, hoses & possibly the water pump (check and see if it is leaking or the shaft feels wobbly)...

You are looking at $250 to $300 in part. Easy job.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:31 AM   #8
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i have no idea how to do any car work...
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:35 AM   #9
xii guy
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i dont notice it leaking any... ive seen it leak out of my tight cap so i got a new 1... still got hot, never in the red and if i turn heat on it will go back down to half way
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Old 03-12-2012, 11:02 AM   #10
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You may need a T-Stat as well... There should be no movement of the needle at all.
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Old 03-12-2012, 11:05 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by xii guy View Post
i have no idea how to do any car work...
http://www.bmw330ci.net/maintenance/completecoolant.php

Buy some tools and get busy.

With the cost of labor, you could buy a whole tool set and still be ahead on this one.
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Old 03-12-2012, 01:09 PM   #12
jasonbimmer
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get the orings out and put them back on the cap.
your cooling system is not pressurizing causing coolant leaking from the cap.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:04 PM   #13
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So I take my car to a shop in town that specializes in foreign cars. I tell him the deal, he says probably air still in the cap or whatever. He bleeds it, I stan at the door watching everything they do, Guy turns around and fingers me to come over their, so I do. He says watch this... "NOTE" My car has been running 20 minutes, its at normal (I think) operating tempertures... He sticks his finger into my fan and stops the blades. I was wow'd. He says, I shouldn't be able to do this, and spins it the opposite direction, pulls finger out and fan starts to rotate more, I tell him, why in the world he would do that and he tells me " I have big balls " HAH I guess so. So my problem was my clutch fan. Getting a new one tmw. Thanks for all the replies guys!
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:38 PM   #14
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Nice! I'll be the bearer of bad news though and say that if you've never replaced the rest of the cooling system, it might be time to do so.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:45 PM   #15
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Car has a new radiator, and I just got the a new peice that the bleeder screw is on w/ the hoses. Im sure its okay.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:48 PM   #16
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Car has a new radiator, and I just got the a new peice that the bleeder screw is on w/ the hoses. Im sure its okay.
What about water pump, thermostat, and expansion tank?

I'm sure it's ok are famous last words.

I'm not generally one of the guys on here who's all for pointless maintenance but replacing these parts of the cooling system is cheap insurance compared to what a new engine would cost. The head and block of the M54 engine are easy to destroy if they overheat.

Last edited by SamDoe1; 03-12-2012 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 03-12-2012, 04:51 PM   #17
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Im not messing with it if its not needed. My car never overheated, just got higher than helf. Never red. Those parts are fine for now. Thx tho
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Old 03-12-2012, 06:56 PM   #18
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Your coolant temperature can change a ridiculous amount before the needle will even move. If it has gone even a hair past half, an overheat IS in your future if you don't fix your cooling system. I can spend hours at the track on a 110 degree day and the needle won't budge past half.

Fix your stuff and fix it fast.
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Old 03-12-2012, 06:59 PM   #19
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i am...fan tomorrow
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:47 AM   #20
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Dude, I'm in Beavercreek... we need to chat one of these days. Speaking from experience, if you haven't already, you need to at least change your expansion tank to keep it from blowing up on you. Mine took a **** on me the day before Thanksgiving as I was leaving to head home, and almost kept me from spending the holiday with my family if not for fixing it myself!

I'd be more than willing to teach you how to do stuff and or do some work for you at a reasonable rate. I've had my car for a year and a half, and have so far not had to take it to a shop *knocks on wood* as I've managed to DIY everything. Shoot me a PM and we'll get in touch one of these days, I'm glad to help out a fellow Bimmer enthusiast.
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