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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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Old 08-31-2007, 07:18 PM
andivebeen andivebeen is offline
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Location: Austin, TX
Join Date: Aug 2007
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Mein Auto: 1996 318i
Unhappy My car overheated HELP!!

Ok, so here's the deal. I have been having aux fan trouble once or twice a year for the last 3 years. This year, it happened yesterday. The simple (maybe cheapo) solution is to get my sweet husband to reach down there and pull out the fuse for me. All is well. Until today

We forgot about the fan being unplugged and proceeded to drive around. After we drove a bit, he noticed a buzzing noise and the temp started to rise. We pull over to plug the fan back in. There was coolant leaking towards the back of the engine, near the intake. We start to drive again (stop and go) and the temp rises more We get on the highway, hoping the air being forced in the radiator will cool the engine. It continues to rise and finally the light comes on We got off asap and as we are exiting, the car dies. And that was it. I noticed a tapping sound before it died. We probably drove about 3 miles total from the time the temp started to rise and the car dying.

I should add that I just took my car in 3 days ago for crankshaft sensor replacement...

SO, a couple questions:

1. Is there a safety net feature to kill the engine before REAL damage is done, or are we likely looking a blown head gasket, etc? (we did not get to check under the hood, as it was pouring rain at this point...)
2. It seems so unlikely that the aux fan being unplugged caused ALL this, or am I misguided?

Any info anyone could provide would be greatly appreciated Thanks in advance!!

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Old 08-31-2007, 07:24 PM
Bmwcat Bmwcat is offline
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Yes, the safety net feature is keeping your eye on the temp guage!! Sorry to hear about this, you are probably looking at a new head gasket. Have a few beers with hubbie and try to enjoy the rest of the holiday.

PS Always turn off the car when this happens and call a tow truck...
"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." -Samuel Johnson
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Old 09-01-2007, 02:45 AM
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Pirate_copy Pirate_copy is offline
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Welcome to the fest

I am sorry to hear you are having problems, but it sounds to me like a gasket issue too.

Any white gunk on the oil cap or dipstick? Oil in the coolant?
2001 Mini Cooper R50

Edirty6 for life
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Old 09-01-2007, 03:31 PM
andivebeen andivebeen is offline
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Location: Austin, TX
Join Date: Aug 2007
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Mein Auto: 1996 318i
Thanks for your input!

OK, not as bad as it seemed. Looks like the heater hose popped off. Everything else looks fine so far. Now for another question:

does the heater hose (near the firewall) look as difficult to get to as it seems? Any tricks? TIA!

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