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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 11-14-2012, 08:19 AM
bmwfan2012 bmwfan2012 is offline
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Location: COLORADo
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Mein Auto: 1997 BMW 528I
Why is my car still overheating?

Hello,

So i have a 1997 BMW 528I. I have had it for over a month now, and it seems to have an overheating problem. I notice that if i am stopped at a light, it starts to over heat, but once i accelarate, then it goes back to normal. I have to keep doing this all the time. I took it to a mechanic, and they replaced the thermostat, and full radiator flush. Before this mechanic, i also noticed that my heater was not working either. Once the mechanic got done me his job, everything was working again. Its been two weeks since then, and now SAME problem again. And now my heater doesnt work also. Can anyone help me out here??
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  #2  
Old 11-14-2012, 09:08 AM
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bkgreene39 bkgreene39 is online now
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Location: Brooklyn
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 528i
Possibly too much air somehow got into the system. If you had work done at at shop, i recommend that you bring it back to them for warranty service. If you choose to work on it yourself search the site for bleeding air from the system, this link is helpful.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=558386

Other then excess air in the system, it could be many other parts that are causing overheat. Fan clutch, water pump, etc etc. Spin the fan clutch fan when car is cold, if should have resistance and not spin freely. Check for leaks within the vehicle. Search the site as well, this topic has been covered more times then a pizza with pepperoni.
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  #3  
Old 11-14-2012, 10:15 AM
edjack edjack is offline
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Mein Auto: '97 540i 6 speed
Have you been watching the coolant level? Have you had to add any?

Possible that the car had some cooling system work before you bought it, and it wasn't bled properly (the six is very difficult to bleed, and s/b done by a BMW specialist).

The lack of heat is a tip-off that there is air in the system. If you are losing coolant, there is a leak, which allows air in.
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  #4  
Old 11-14-2012, 10:26 AM
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bkgreene39 bkgreene39 is online now
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Mein Auto: 1998 BMW 528i
The M52 is not difficult to bleed. People should stop perpetuating this myth, this discourages people from trying to work on their cars. It is very easy to bleed the system, child's play. I never wrenched on any vehicle before I got my e39, and I never found bleeding the system difficult.
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  #5  
Old 11-14-2012, 11:43 AM
edjack edjack is offline
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You are truly an amazing man. Most of the inexperienced here have difficulties with this task, and the more august members here have developed methods the ensure proper bleeding.
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Ed in San Jose '97 540i 6 speed aspensilber over aubergine leather. Build date 3/97. Golden Gate Chapter BMW CCA Nr 62319.
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  #6  
Old 11-14-2012, 03:16 PM
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moots moots is offline
wat's dat noise
Location: Malaysia
 
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Mein Auto: '04 525i
Quote:
Originally Posted by bkgreene39 View Post
The M52 is not difficult to bleed. People should stop perpetuating this myth, this discourages people from trying to work on their cars. It is very easy to bleed the system, child's play. I never wrenched on any vehicle before I got my e39, and I never found bleeding the system difficult.
totally agree....i bleed mine whenever required with nil issues at all.simple and straight fwd.
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:37 PM
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ztom ztom is offline
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Location: Thousand Oaks CA
 
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Mein Auto: 1997 528i
Quote:
Originally Posted by moots View Post
totally agree....i bleed mine whenever required with nil issues at all.simple and straight fwd.
+1 I need to say (because I've spent a lot of time with the M52). Bleeding on a hill is nice but not required. On the '97 it is critical to see the fluid coming out of the bleed screw on the upper hose (T-stat housing). I think most people are just filling to the expansion tank line and that's not a sufficient check.

I think the coolant issues on the e39 mandate going to NPG waterless, for low pressure. I've been running it for years on two e39s and it's great.

Stopping at a light and seeing the needle go hot, then cool when moving - classic for e39. First to verify is coolant level, because at idle all the bubbles settle out and the head gets exposed to an air pocket. Next I would be thinking cracked head starting to inject air. After that I think in very few cases the problem is thermostat or water pump, but it can happen.
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