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Old 06-29-2012, 04:19 PM   #1
CameronT
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Cooling system last resort.

It's been two weeks now of waiting for parts and getting everything in line on my 2000 328ci standard. I have refrained from asking for help until now I have almost given up. I've worked on cars for years and for some reason this one is just being the death of me.

I had a bad thermostat which was the initial cause of what happened. While driving the thermostat failed and the expansion tank cracked along with the side of the radiator where they are almost touching. I replaced my thermostat, water pump, upper rad hose, expansion tank , tank cap, and radiator. I do not have a bad head gasket along with zero smoke from my exhaust. Now after replacing all of those things I bled the system. Lower rad hose fills up after starting yet only gets Luke warm not hot. Car will run forever at idle and revving in the driveway. I live at the base of a hill and to leave I drive uphill for about a football field in length. After cresting at the top of the hill on the flat the temp gauge begins to go beyond half and I immediately turn around. I need some help here. I'm hoping it's just frustration making me overlook something silly. I just can't understand why it will run forever at idle but as soon as I drive begin to overheat. Any input is appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:49 PM   #2
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I did my coolant system overhaul recently also...i kept filling the resivior with coolant untill it came out of the bleeder hole on the upper rad hose...then when there were no air bubbles coming out of the bleeder hose i reinstalled the screw and then put the resivior cap on and turned on the car with the heater on full heat temp i think 91 degrees and the center scroll knob on the center vent switched to red. Ran the car took it for a drive and my temp never went past the center mark and its been good ever since.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:52 PM   #3
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Just from reading your post and looking at the car list you own, you sound like you know your way around cars, so, forgive me if I ask stupid questions.

When you replaced the cooling system components did you drain the entire system, engine block as well? If so, that requires you to jack up the front of the car. I just bled my cooling system (collecting parts to overhaul everything now) and when I refilled and bled the system the car was still had the front in the air. I ask this because it sounds to me like there's air in your system that keeping the coolant from circulating and that once your cars nose gets pointed uphill the air is preventing the coolant from circulating causing your temp to spike. My suggestion is drain the entire system and refill and bleed it again and be sure to let the car cool down completely and check the levels then as well, before lowering it off the jack stands.

I really hope this helps.
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:53 PM   #4
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Also make sure your cooling fan/radiator fan is working
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:04 PM   #5
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I actually just looked over my fan and the module attached to the fan looks as if it somehow popped something on its circuit board after removing the cover to it. Although I may be wrong but I feel that the module would not have anything to do with the cooling system while driving. I believe it may have burnt something from when the expansion tank cracked.
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:16 PM   #6
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Sounds like a improper or rushed bleed.
How long did it take for you to finish your bleed procedure?

Bleeding takes a good while to do properly. What steps did you take? (Bentley/engine-off or engine-on methods?)

Elevating the frontend of your vehicle when you use the Bentley method helps and this method usually takes 30 minutes or more to complete.


Quote:
Originally Posted by CameronT View Post
I actually just looked over my fan and the module attached to the fan looks as if it somehow popped something on its circuit board after removing the cover to it. Although I may be wrong but I feel that the module would not have anything to do with the cooling system while driving. I believe it may have burnt something from when the expansion tank cracked.
IS this the Real cause of your problems? Fried fan module??
Nonetheless, if your fan is not operating properly.. nothing else we say matters. Get this checked.

Last edited by BimmersGarage; 06-29-2012 at 05:21 PM.
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CameronT View Post
I actually just looked over my fan and the module attached to the fan looks as if it somehow popped something on its circuit board after removing the cover to it. Although I may be wrong but I feel that the module would not have anything to do with the cooling system while driving. I believe it may have burnt something from when the expansion tank cracked.
Or it could have been the other way around. A dead fan (or a fan that doesn't run full speed anymore) causing excessive heat in the system, which in turn causes the expansion tank to explode.

This seems consistent with your symptoms. Driving up a hill under load produces considerably more heat than at idle. If your fan no longer spins with any gusto, you get unexpelled heat from the system. Remember that the water in the system is only half the cooling equation. The water takes the heat from the block, but the air needs to take the heat from the water via the radiator and fan assembly.

How did you verify that the thermostat was the cause of the initial expansion tank burst? Even if it did throw a "stuck" code, the problem may have been purely peripheral and had nothing to do with your initial failure.

Some food for thought.
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Old 06-29-2012, 05:59 PM   #8
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I agree that it sounds like it's probably a bleeding issue.

You shouldn't need to drain the whole thing, though...though that's never a bad idea!

I should have my alt bleeding instructions ready to copy and paste...there around here...search me and 4k rpm and 20 secs

GL; hth
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Old 06-29-2012, 07:42 PM   #9
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I know it sounds like a bleeding issue however I've bled the car twice before with no problems so I'm way lost.
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Old 06-29-2012, 08:00 PM   #10
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Your not bleeding it good enough then if it IS the issue with your bleeding method.

When I did my cooling system overhaul I had to bleed the system several times.
You can try doing what I did when my car kept overheating after cooling system work.

I removed the bleed screw from the upper radiator hose and then set heat to highest with the fan lowest and try to add coolant. Next I started up the car and began to rev up to 3.5k and coolant and air shot out from the bleed valve. Never overheated after that day.
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Old 06-29-2012, 10:15 PM   #11
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Another issue that may cause the overheating is a faulty "new" thermostat. What brand did you purchase? (Hopefully you didn't get the aluminum unit.)
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Old 06-30-2012, 01:05 AM   #12
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When you drive, there is a load placed on the engine. When there's a load, it heats up faster. When it heats up faster and you're not going fast enough for air to blow over the radiator, your car wants to switch on the aux fan. I noticed you didn't say you replaced the lower radiator hose which means you didn't replace the aux. fan switch.

If you did replace those two items then you need to check to see that you have the following:

1) Enough water

2) Bubble free water

3) Circulating water (Which I'm sure you have since your water pump was replaced)

4) Air moving over the radiator (fan)
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Old 07-30-2012, 02:34 AM   #13
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Cars FIXED!

So I must thank all of you for giving me a lending hand with this. The car is all fixed and I haven't gotten back to anyone because I've been backed up with a massive amount of work for two tradeshows that just passed I was constructing for.

Well as I've said before the hardest part about solving the issue with the car was the money. After buying a new apartment money is tighter than ever. Replaced the thermostat ,expansion tank, expansion tank cap, water pump , radiator , sensors, and the upper rad hose.


So the cause of my car overheating was two things. Air in the system coming from the smaller quick connect fitting on the upper rad hose which was new, however ended up being oddly 1 inch longer than the second new upper hose I purchased at turner MotorSports.

The second problem that was setting me back was that I received a faulty thermostat from wahler! I ordered a behr thermostat from yet again turner MotorSports and bam instantly fixed my overheating problem.

Thank you everyone and dmaxx especially.
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Old 07-30-2012, 02:36 AM   #14
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I knew after being able to bleed the car 3 other times beforehand that it wasn't my bleeding technique it was just letting frustration on my own car and the money getting to me
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Old 07-30-2012, 02:52 AM   #15
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Did you drain the block plug? Why/why not?
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Old 07-30-2012, 04:27 AM   #16
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Glad you got this fixed.

Not sure I deserve the special thanks, but you're welcome anyway!

I'm also curious what brand of hose you bought that was too long. Might be a good idea for others to be on the lookout for it...and not use it! Also, how did you figure out it was a bad therm?
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Old 07-30-2012, 07:45 AM   #17
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Quote:
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The second problem that was setting me back was that I received a faulty thermostat from wahler! I ordered a behr thermostat from yet again turner MotorSports and bam instantly fixed my overheating
For the past 2 months, I've been chasing a coolant leak when I finally found the culprit a wahler tstat. Lucas from Clickableautomotive replaced my wahler for a behr and so far so good.
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