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5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

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Old 12-17-2004, 04:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Please forgive my newbie-ness coupled with just enough research to be dangerous, but I am currently living in fear of a catastrophic failure of my coolant system any day now in my virginal 105K-mile 1999 540i/6, based on the info postings/stories I've read here and at other sites.

I've had no trouble so far, and in fact have not seen any drop in coolant level since I initially topped off the radiator right after buying my car in October. I am on my original radiator and all hoses, and per service records, there's never been a problem with this system in my car. It's just that I've just read these bits about the radiator letting go in hi-mile 540's, or the water pump blowing up, and/or one or more heater hoses or radiator hoses going South in a manner requiring a tow to the nearest BMW shop.

I plan to do a total coolant replacement in the next two weeks while off from work, using genuine BMW coolant and distilled water, of course.

My question/requests:
1) Am I being too paranoid?
2) If not, are there any warning signs prior to should I watch for prior to catastrophic failure? Will I notice coolant disappearing first?
3) Should I go ahead and just pre-emptively replace everything?

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Old 12-17-2004, 06:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Eric S.@Dec 17 2004, 11:38 PM
Please forgive my newbie-ness coupled with just enough research to be dangerous, but I am currently living in fear of a catastrophic failure of my coolant system any day now in my virginal 105K-mile 1999 540i/6, based on the info postings/stories I've read here and at other sites.

I've had no trouble so far, and in fact have not seen any drop in coolant level since I initially topped off the radiator right after buying my car in October.* I am on my original radiator and all hoses, and per service records, there's never been a problem with this system in my car.* It's just that I've just read these bits about the radiator letting go in hi-mile 540's, or the water pump blowing up, and/or one or more heater hoses or radiator hoses going South in a manner requiring a tow to the nearest BMW shop.

I plan to do a total coolant replacement in the next two weeks while off from work, using genuine BMW coolant and distilled water, of course.

My question/requests:
1) Am I being too paranoid?
2) If not, are there any warning signs prior to should I watch for prior to catastrophic failure?* Will I notice coolant disappearing first?
3) Should I go ahead and just pre-emptively replace everything?


[snapback]253424[/snapback]
Hey Eric long time no see
Let me try to answer your 3 questions hoping many will disagree with me to your benefits:
1. yes you are. Sorry pal
2. yes for warning signs also. look at all hoses/clamps etc, feel them (when cold) I am sure you can tell by the way it looks/feels if it is going south!
3. No. If it is not broken don't.......fill in the blank.
billb
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Old 12-18-2004, 01:52 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Heres your warning sign.

If the temp guage goes over half...pull over, let the car cool, and get it to a mechanic in short order.
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Old 12-18-2004, 03:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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IF you are paranoid, why do a radiator flush. Coolant that is old wrecks coolant systems. Rad flushes are cheap enough.
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Old 12-18-2004, 09:48 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally posted by rsn48@Dec 18 2004, 05:41 PM
IF you are paranoid, why do a radiator flush. Coolant that is old wrecks coolant systems. Rad flushes are cheap enough.
[snapback]253884[/snapback]
I'm doing a coolant flush because I have an 11/98 build date car that requires the coolant to be changed every three years, and I don't think anyone's ever touched it on my car. Even if they DID flush it in late 2002, it wouldn't hurt to git at it again now...

Good tips, thanks guys!

Since I am symptomless right now, it sounds as though if a problem does come up there will be little warnings like mysterious leakage or temp needle climbing past 1/2-way. OK, I feel a little better now...
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