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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 07-15-2004, 11:10 AM   #1 (permalink)
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In case any one was following my earlier post regarding changing coolant hoses on a 1992 325 IS, I know know for sure the following:

Hoses are not cheap. the hose "kit" that I purchased was 149.00 plus shipping, and does not include the three hoses that are at the back of the firewall (another 60 bucks from the local dealer.

I now know for sure that in order to replace all of the coolant hoses one MUST remove the intake manifold. (another 40-60 bucks in rubber o-rings which really should be replaced if the manifold has been in place more than a couple of months)

I also know that dealers will NOT tell you that you shold replace anything more than the upper and lower radiator hoses, and the cross over hose. (usually quoting about 300 bucks to do this) When I insisted that I wished to replace all o fthe hoses the dealer says " why would you do that, they shold be good for 200K miles or more. the factory doesn't advise us to even inspect them" I responded that this is a 12 year old car, and that rubber breaks down as a function of time as well as mileage. He says he disagrees. (if any of you has ever looked under a hood of a 5-7 year old turbocharged car, and grabbed a rubber or plastic house and felt is crack and crumble in your hands then you would know that heat and time are also contributing factors.

I FINALLY got a straight answer from BMW only repair shop. this guy said " i have a hard time convincing customers that 1000-1200 bucks for a preventive hose change is something they should do. Customers feel better about changing the main three hoses and if one of the others springs a leak they will deal with it then. "

Well, here is my preliminary thought about that concept based on holding all the new hoses in my grubby little hands: the construction and composition of all but one hose is the same!!! If you beleive you should change the upper lower and crossover hoses then you should beleive that you should change all of them since the seem to be subjected to the same hot coolant, the same engine compartment heat, and the same pressure that any of the other hoses are subjected to.

Tomoorow i will take off the manifold and change out my hoses. Many folks on other boards are waiting for the pictures/analysis of the condition of the insides of the old hoses. I am really curious myself. If it turns out that at 12 years 60K miles most of my hoses were in good condition, then I guess I will owe some folks some apologies, and many people will sigh with releif. on the other hand, if I find what I expect, there are a lot of folks that may want to consider spending a day and a few hundred bucks changing out these houses insted of perhaps upgrading their audio systems. (I am all for great audio, but somehow it is not quite as sweet listening to that thumping systyem on the side of the road waiting for the tow company becuase your car overheated).

I will post part three after the weekend
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Old 07-15-2004, 12:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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glad you were able to find out what you needed in order to do this. If you don't mind posting the pics of the hoses here as well, I've been a bit curious about it, but have heard the same thing from mechanics and dealerhships that you heard. Which lead me to believe it's true if the stealership won't even check it when checking the other hoses.
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Old 07-15-2004, 02:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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My real concern is that I have all of these hoses in my hands, and they are all made by the same company for BMW (it happens to be continental) and they are all made of the same substance (EDPM rubber if I recall correctly) So why does BMW recommend checking and replacing the upper and lower and cross over hoses but not the others? My beleif is that it is too damn hard/expensive to change all of them and the average owner is not going to eat a 1000 repair bill for preventive maintenace on top of a 800-1000 bill for a sevice II (another three hundred if it is every second sevice II where you are supposed to change the tranny and rear diff fluids and a few other things). Well the proof will indeed be in what I see when i cut those hoses open. From my perspective though.. a couple of hundred bucks and a days work is a good investment in peice of mind
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