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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 10-18-2014, 03:40 AM
paolop paolop is offline
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Mein Auto: E39 530I Manual
Expansion Tank, opinions please

Hey All

Ok this is the second question ref my cooling system overhaul.
I know this subject has been talked about a lot, but I bought an expansion tank on ebay before reading all about ‘you must buy from BMW direct’ because of premature failures of cheap aftermarket parts.

Can you take a look at the attached pictures and let me know if you think this is okay or if I should buy one direct from BMW. I must admit it looks the part, The cap was purchased separately from the tank.

As you can see by the one of the pics, next to the sticker there has been some details scratched off, and someone commented the other day ‘Being an OEM supplier meant they may have stamped an BMW logo on it, and they need to scratch that when selling it to you’

So what are your thoughts?
Thanks in Advance
Paolo
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  #2  
Old 10-18-2014, 05:59 AM
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sixpot_simon sixpot_simon is offline
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Don't worry about it, Behr is a good brand for this stuff.

EDIT: I posted this based on my local indy BMW guru recommending Behr. Sorry for the bad info, I was not aware of the failures with the Chinese-made Behr tanks. Dodgy counterfeits labelled as Behr, lower quality Behr Chinese tanks, hose connections with rogue plugs... wow the E39 expansion tanks are such a minefield!!

Last edited by sixpot_simon; 10-18-2014 at 03:10 PM.
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  #3  
Old 10-18-2014, 06:51 AM
rdl rdl is offline
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There have been reports of Behr aftermarket tanks being defective: either premature failures or blockage in the connection ports on the bottom.

However my recollection is that the defective ones were made in China, or at least China got the blame.
Since yours is marked as made in Germany it has a good chance of being the same as would be supplied through BMW channels.
The best bet would be to search the threads to confirm, or not, that the defective Behr tanks were all manufactured "overseas" & the German made are reliable.
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  #4  
Old 10-18-2014, 07:23 AM
crazy4trains crazy4trains is offline
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If the "Made in Germany" sticker is authentic that is about as good as you can do.

Did you buy from an individual or an Ebay seller that specializes in BMW parts?

Can you provide link(s)?
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  #5  
Old 10-18-2014, 08:08 AM
paolop paolop is offline
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Thanks for everyone's feedback so far, much appreciated...here is the link to the ebay listing.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Coolant-Ex...item5658717171

The company is BMW Motormec, they have plenty of feedback and out of all the thousands of positive feedback only 1 negative, so that's a good sign

Yes i have checked out the threads and it seems is was the china ones that were the issue, just wondering if anyone has experienced any faults with this particular version
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  #6  
Old 10-18-2014, 10:53 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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This is a good cross reference for the Behr DOA threads ...
- Behr radiator and Behr/Heat expansion tank autopsy (1) (2) & request for another Behr surge tank autopsy (1) & why new Behr/Hella expansion tanks are DOA (1)
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Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #7  
Old 10-18-2014, 12:18 PM
paolop paolop is offline
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Cheers Bluebee...
Just had a quick look through and I'm pretty sure what I've purchased is good..I hope & pray!
Looking at pictures of other users original expansion tanks, they have a white scan label with 25788 printed on it and mine has it. Mine certainly looks very well built and doesn't look like it's come from China.

So can you confirm, the 2 outlets should be clear and not have any obstructions?
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  #8  
Old 10-19-2014, 08:32 AM
AV8R4AA AV8R4AA is offline
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I bought a non an aftermarket tank. For what ever reason, I COULD NOT keep the level full.
I could not find any leak, yet the level was always low.

Sprung for a dealer tank and now my coolant level hasn't moved .
I thought the guys here were talking smack about the quality.


After seeing my non factory tank fail, I will only buy a tank from dealer.
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Last edited by AV8R4AA; 10-19-2014 at 08:33 AM.
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  #9  
Old 10-19-2014, 11:22 AM
paolop paolop is offline
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Thanks for your feedback, what aftermarket version did you buy? where was it made? what was printed on the tank?
Ta
Paolo
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  #10  
Old 10-19-2014, 12:59 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paolop View Post
the 2 outlets should be clear and not have any obstructions?
There was a thread on that topic, and, I think it may be referenced in the ones I already referenced, but, yes, from my recollection, the two bottom ports are open.

One thing you might do for us though, is to MEASURE the o-rings in the bottom port pipes.

This thread seems to need that information:
- Complete list of E39 o-ring sizes (1)

We only have the numbers for the E46/85/86, but not the E39 (should be the same as the E46, but you never know)...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedex750 View Post
Bluebee asked if I would put up the O ring sizes for the E46/85/86 coolant expansion tank. We've been through a bit of a saga changing tanks and part of this was to renew the O rings in the hoses and other ends. Here's what we've fitted if it's useful to others so they can get ones round the block at a bearing outlet or off Ebay (i.e. not from BMW outlet);

Large bottom connection in tank (new tanks come with this installed)
Spigot is 38.8mm, housing is 46.3mm. Use a 38mm ID x 4mm cross section O ring
This is the same size as the O rings in the ends of the top hose, and I strongly suspect the bottom hose will be the same as well.

Small bottom connection in tank (new tanks come with this installed)
Spigot is 22.2mm, housing is 29.2mm. Use a 22mm ID x 3.5mm cross section O ring
This is the same size as the hose connection onto the bracket retaining the tank, returning to the coolant pump and the side connection on the tank that returns from the heater.

Top connection off the top hose - adjacent to the filler cap
Spigot is 16.4mm, housing is 22mm. Use a 16mm ID x 3mm cross section O ring

Automatic gearbox versions have some extra connections on the bracket retaining the tank including a thermostat - I don't know what's in these.

I find that lubricating the O rings and engaging parts with Petroleum Jelly ('Vaseline' in the UK) helps them slide together and seal without tearing. It'll also help get them apart easily in the future if you have to!

I'm not sure what material the original O rings were. they weren't the green ones often deployed by BMW. I suspect just about anything would work but if you've got a choice go for the superior properties of Viton.
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Please read the suggested threads, where the best always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need

Last edited by bluebee; 10-19-2014 at 01:12 PM.
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