: Radiator Issues

Joyce Sullivan
03-14-2010, 04:02 PM
Hello - Iam a first-timer. I own a 2004 325 CiC, and I love the car. Have had it since August 2007 with very few problems. Bought it certified pre-owned, former lease vehicle. Can I say the dealer? Not sure... In Jan. 2010, the radiator light came on. The car was leaking anitfreeze; I brought it to the dealer, and they told me I had a broken hose, and a broken sensor. both were fixed. This week, the light came on again. Two days after I had the car serviced, replacing ?? control arm bushings??. Back to the dealer. Picked it up yesterday, and was told the expansion tank was the culprit. OK. This afternoon, the temp light starts glowing red. not good, right?

I would appreciate any feedback/thoughts. Thanks!

03-14-2010, 04:23 PM
Hi Joyce - Welcome to the fest.

The E46 cooling system is not one of the most robust - witness the many threads we have on the 'fest on cooling repair and DIY.

Many owners (myself included) opt to simply replace the majority of the cooling system components as a preventive measure. For example, for approximately $400 in parts, you can get a new expantion tank, water pump, hoses, thermostat, belts and sundries all at one go.

The jury is out as to how long these components last in real terms, but certainly as they fail sequentially it will be a pain to deal with piecemeal. I chose to follow the advice of more knowledgable owners and do my entire system at 60K.

As your car's service history may be unclear, it might be an option to engage the services of a good independent mechanic to advise you on the condition of all these parts, then schedule a service visit to address these items.

As to your other concern, the suspension components are also generally considered "wear" items. Due to the BMW suspension geometry and design, it's not unusual for the rubber components in the control arm bushings and inner and outer tie rods to perish and wear. This results in loose steering as well as poor alignment and accelerated tyre wear.

Again, a good programme of inspection and replacement is generally in order.

Best of luck on your car and welcome to the fest.

I've owned my 2003 E46 sedan since new, and have racked up 80,000 miles on it.

I love driving it every day.

Good luck.

03-29-2010, 02:28 PM
Joyce: Which dealer is doing your work?