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E28 (1982 - 1988)

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  #1  
Old 03-30-2013, 06:15 PM
Jackjackerton Jackjackerton is offline
1988 BMW 535is Auto
Location: Costa Mesa, CA
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 1988 BMW 535is Automatic
Exclamation 1988 535is ((HELP - COOLANT OVERHEAT))

1988 BMW 535is Automatic Inline 6 Cylinder

Hi,

My car over heats when being driven after about 1hr, but not when just idling. Check engine light is on and off sometimes. Drips out coolant from coolant reservoir spill hose on bottom of car when hot. The pressure is building up and leaking coolant from hoses and coolant cap. Sounds like its boiling.

Is it my water pump?

My oil level is fine and looks okay (head gasket). The coolant reservoir was pretty gunked up with brown oily paste yesterday. I removed it and cleaned it up really good and reattached the reservoir and since the buildup has not reaccumulated.

Maybe a head gasket?

Or just need to flush out the coolant?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 03-31-2013, 06:58 AM
waehrik waehrik is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: MA
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 122
Mein Auto: e39 530i/5, e28 535i
First of all, did someone do a Motronic 1.3 swap in your car? It doesn't look like from the pictures that you're running the later ECU and wiring harness, so you don't have a check engine light. You have a service reminder and a yellow flashing CHECK light that corresponds to the warnings above your rear view mirror. Are any of those LEDs on?

I would recommend you have the system pressure tested to see if you have any leaks either internally or externally. That's the only way to know for sure if there's a leak. You may have something as simple though as a failed or failing cap that isn't holding pressure properly. The system could also be overfilled.
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  #3  
Old 04-01-2013, 01:48 AM
Jackjackerton Jackjackerton is offline
1988 BMW 535is Auto
Location: Costa Mesa, CA
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 2
Mein Auto: 1988 BMW 535is Automatic
The LED light for "rear lights" is on. The Green/Yellow/Red lights on the dash, yes my "Yellow" light is lit up. And the check engine light is currently flashing on and off. I found this car cheap at a tow lot, it was towed for expired tags and probably SMOG. It was in pretty good shape and even the a/c worked so I thought if I can keep it moving someone will want it.

I'm now seeing water dripping from under the fan rotor on the front of the engine, its really slow but it leaking from a place i cant see underneath. The block is smoking a little and I had it die when i took my foot off the gas pedal today. So I had it towed to a shop I trust for a free check. It's starting to look like it's a head gasket now, maybe even in addition to a water pump problem. The body and interior look great, I'd hate to junk the car. Any advice?
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  #4  
Old 04-01-2013, 04:25 PM
catso's Avatar
catso catso is offline
catso
Location: Chicago
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,989
Mein Auto: 2000 323i, 1988 528e
It could be a water pump and your fan clutch may also be contributing to the problem. The hoses and connections to the overflow tank are also known to leak, especially if they are still original. I would have the cooling system pressure tested and also tested for the presence of combustion gases (I.E: Blockchek) so you can figure out if you have a bad head gasket. An old plugged up radiator may also contribute to your overheating issues, if there was brown oily paste in the overflow tank, that would seem like a bad head gasket. The only way to enjoy these cars is to make sure that all the major systems are in good working order.
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  #5  
Old 04-01-2013, 07:55 PM
waehrik waehrik is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: MA
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 122
Mein Auto: e39 530i/5, e28 535i
+1 to what catso said. Check the coolant for combustion gases and perform a leak test.

You're also missing a couple parts. There's supposed to be a 'tool tray' on the front of the car above the radiator. You're also missing the transmission reference and crank position sensors. At least they're not where they're supposed to be, mounted on one of the intake manifold supports. I've attached a picture of the missing holes.

I'm actually thinking more and more that you have a Motronic 1.3 swap (which is a good thing!). Read more about the other telltale signs.
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