Losing Coolant - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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#1 (permalink) Old 01-13-2005, 12:29 PM
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First of all, that should have been losing not loosing in the title. Typo and don't know how to edit title. ghead

Hi everyone, first time poster.

I own a 2002 325i, manual.

Over the last year or so, I've noticed that I'm losing coolant. There is no indication of leakage (coolent on garage floor) and I've had it checked out in my last inspection at the dealer and they said everything seemed fine. Did a pressure check, no leakage.

They claim the problem was that the lid wasn't on tight enough and I was having some evaporation. Not sure I believe that, being the suspicious type.

But I have to put coolant in about every 2-3 months. Not a lot, but I've gone through one quart in the last year and that includes having it topped off in one of my inspections.

So I was wondering if anyone knew what else could be the problem? My concern is that I've just passed my warranty interval and is it possible they purposely didn't tell me about the problem untill after I was out of warranty? I'm concerned that I'm going to take it in next time and they'll tell me I have a leak that has really been there for quite a while.

Is there something else that could be causing this that would be much more serious? I once had a car with a leaky cylinder head gasket and coolant was leaking into the engine. I'm concerned that there might be some serious problem that they don't want to tell me about untill I have to pay for it.

Any ideas, suggestions or insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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#2 (permalink) Old 01-13-2005, 03:16 PM
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check the appearance of engine oil. if it is milky, or very opaque, chances are you have a pinhole in the head gasket. rather unlikely given normal leak down.

check the water pump for evidence of leaks, usually dried up yellowish goo underneath. often gaskets leak there.

check the intergrity of the collant reservoir. small crack will leak, and often this is so hidden you cannot appreciate it.
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#3 (permalink) Old 01-13-2005, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by peterkulesza@Jan 13 2005, 04:16 PM
check the appearance of engine oil. if it is milky, or very opaque, chances are you have a pinhole in the head gasket. rather unlikely given normal leak down.

check the water pump for evidence of leaks, usually dried up yellowish goo underneath. often gaskets leak there.

check the intergrity of the collant reservoir. small crack will leak, and often this is so hidden you cannot appreciate it.
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Thanks, those are all good advice. The oil looks fine. If there was any leak, I'd know it, the car sat in the garage for 2 weeks over XMas. I would definitely have a pool of anti freeze on the floor of my garage.

So its neither of those things. What else could possibly be causing me to go through this much coolant?
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#4 (permalink) Old 01-13-2005, 04:58 PM
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if you'd have a leaky head gasket, the coolant would enter the combustion chamber and burn up there. if you'd have a leaky gasket, you would see white smoke out the tailpipe, so check that.
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#5 (permalink) Old 01-13-2005, 06:16 PM
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remember that if it leaks only when hot, there is no puddle. or if it leaks onto a hot surface.

the last place to look is the heater core. whiff of glycol on defrost setting?
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