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General E46 Forum
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Old 09-14-2012, 10:22 AM   #521
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I am trying to limit my time in the rain....
Don't worry... you're doing your car a great service. The BMW gods will be looking upon you with great delight. The clouds will pass and sky will open up. Just make sure you face Bavaria and salute prior to starting the work.
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:05 PM   #522
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Don't worry... you're doing your car a great service. The BMW gods will be looking upon you with great delight. The clouds will pass and sky will open up. Just make sure you face Bavaria and salute prior to starting the work.
I faced to the East and said hello to Bavaria.
Actually Bavaria is very nice. I saw much of it when I was in the Army.
There are a lot of historical sites to visit there and that is also where homeowners paint murals on the sides of their homes. Lots of woodcarvings and cuckoo clocks as well.

Unfortunately, it was not enough.
I returned this morning and I removed the hoses and allowed the water to drain.
I can't lift the tank out. I rad it was not a good idea to wiggle it and I tried to pull it straight out/up.

On the website where I ordered the tank, it had a retention clip. But I don't know if it applied to the expansion tank or the radiator. I removed 3 clips I found on the water hoses. 2 on the top hose and 1 on the bottom hose. Is there another one , perhaps on the bottom of the tank ? I could not see one, did I miss it ?

If all it does is sit in the bottom, it sure sits there tight........ any suggestions other than elbow grease?

I have done everything I thought I was suppose to do......I thanked my baby and told her I would fix her up and make her feel good again, I told her after I replaced the tank she would purr like a kitten and run like a tiger. I thanked the rain gods for ceasing to drop on me and the sun ever came out. I looked to Bavaria and thanked them for all the good times I had there and all the nice people I met.

But alas...........the justice of Murphy's Law has prevailed on me. Whatever can go wrong has........I can't get it out....Everything I have done is not enough.....I feel like I am losing at love.........

Any helpful suggestions ?
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:07 PM   #523
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What about the thermostat thing that is in the bottom of the tank. I thought that had to be removed after the tank was lifted up.
Do I have to remove it first ? Does it just twist out ?

By the way, have you seen that youtube video from the guy replacing his ET ?
He pulled it out and showed the crack in his tank.
Mine is in the same place , about 4 inches long down the back of the tank. The side that faces the driver.
I would expect a leak to occur in the corners or where the cap sits or where a hose connects.
I wonder why it failed right in the middle of the tank ?


Would it help to use pliers to grip the edge of the tank and pull up ?
I need to know if there is anything else keeping it secured to the bottom before I pull any harder and break anything else.
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:34 PM   #524
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Do you have the shield removed from down under and your car elevated some?
I'd get under there to make sure there are no more fasteners or anything else holding you up.
If I recall, there are only hooking pieces that hold the rad secure down below.
And if done right, mine pulled up and out with little resistance.
I have a manual trans.
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:46 PM   #525
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Do you have the shield removed from down under and your car elevated some?
I'd get under there to make sure there are no more fasteners or anything else holding you up.
If I recall, there are only hooking pieces that hold the rad secure down below.
And if done right, mine pulled up and out with little resistance.
I have a manual trans.
Yes the splash shield is removed.
I have an automatic.
I am not removing the radiator , just the expansion tank.
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:49 PM   #526
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Oh, sorry, I did it all at the same time.
But my ET lifted right off of the bracket that holds it to the radiator before I pulled out the rad.

Are you looking at the new unit to see where all the fasten points are?
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:51 PM   #527
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I found two places on the bottom where I could wedge a large flat head screwdriver in and rock it gently back and forth to break the seal. Go to both front and back and try it. About 5 mins. after you give up, it will give up and finally come loose.

Yanking seems to be the most common approach, but be careful as you could break the ET bracket clips (though I think you have it loose from radiator). Try gentle first...spray wd40 or something up into the large hole at bottom (where that large clip goes over). There's an o-ring in there that will 'bond' from years of crust building up.
Is there a clip at the bottom of the tank ?

Or am I having problems removing it because the o ring is crusty ?


It is not coming loose. I had fruit for breakfast. Should I get a bowl of wheaties and a beer ?
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Old 09-15-2012, 03:52 PM   #528
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Oh, sorry, I did it all at the same time.
But my ET lifted right off of the bracket that holds it to the radiator before I pulled out the rad.

Are you looking at the new unit to see where all the fasten points are?
Yes and that is why I am confused.
You said it lifted right out, some say it sticks
I don't want to force anything and break something else, especially on a Saturday afternoon.
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Old 09-15-2012, 04:11 PM   #529
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I don't recall, can you take off the bracket and lift that and the ET out together, or are the fasteners blocked?

Some have had to pull out the rad with bracket and ET attached to work on it removed from the engine bay.
I bet it's just stuck at the bottom. Tried twisting any?
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Old 09-15-2012, 04:14 PM   #530
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And for sure you have clip #6 pulled completely out?

I'd take it off the ET for now.
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Old 09-15-2012, 04:15 PM   #531
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I don't recall, can you take off the bracket and lift that and the ET out together, or are the fasteners blocked?

Some have had to pull out the rad with bracket and ET attached to work on it removed from the engine bay.
I bet it's just stuck at the bottom. Tried twisting any?
I have not tried twisting, I don't want to break the bottom housing or the radiator.
There is a temperature sensor in the bottom and I don't know how much wiggle room I have for that to move.

I don't even know how it sits in the ET. I haven't seen any pics or any thing from youtube on it. I am still working in the blind.

I am trying to avoid damaging anything.

I think that removing the radiator to remove the ET might be a bit much if I don't have to do it.
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Old 09-15-2012, 05:33 PM   #532
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If you're still struggling with this, make sure the retention clip underneath the tank (in the RealOEM diagram above) is pulled off. I took a long socket extension and placed it at the bottom of the expansion tank and have it a few whacks with a rubber mallet. That seemed to loosen it up.
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Old 09-15-2012, 05:36 PM   #533
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removing the rad is not that involved.
you're halfway there.
only thing you didn't plan on was removing the bottom hose.
but I guess you'd then have to do the fan which is a pain on an auto.

luck
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Old 09-15-2012, 06:57 PM   #534
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And for sure you have clip #6 pulled completely out?

I'd take it off the ET for now.
I have not removed number 6.
I will do it first thing in the morning.
Thanks.
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:08 PM   #535
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that's a clip that locks the ET to the bracket.
much like the clip on the rad hoses.
new ET does not come with the clip, so I had to use the old one.

as I recall the bottom of the rad fits into a 'carrier' that has to be moved to the new rad. I almost threw it out with the rad until I noticed that the new one seemed bare down there.
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Old 09-16-2012, 06:10 AM   #536
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Mango I'm looking forward to switch my cooling system but i have a question! What is causing this: my temp never run over 94C but my cluster is always over 1/2
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Old 09-16-2012, 10:09 AM   #537
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I'd start suspecting the thermostat first.
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Old 09-16-2012, 10:13 AM   #538
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Thanks! I will change hoses, water pump(graf), thermostat(wahle), ET(oem), belt, and coolant sensor(oem) maybe next week when part arrive home! So after that should i look for something else?
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Old 09-16-2012, 10:24 AM   #539
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Let us know if you still have the same conditions after you've replaced what you plan to.

While you are all open in the front of the engine, what about a new Behr radiator for under $150. I see high mileage on your car, do you know the history of the radiator? They do spring leaks.

And again with this access, what about your tensioner and deflection pulleys? What's the history/condition here?
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Old 09-16-2012, 10:35 AM   #540
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Yea sure! And the radiator when bought the car owner give me the receive of new radiator from dealer 1 mount ago! And yes also planing change both tensioner! I want to leave everything on the coolant system new as well!
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