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E21 (1975 - 1983)

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Old 09-28-2009, 03:51 PM
GCe21 GCe21 is offline
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Location: Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 14
Mein Auto: '83 320i
overheating? +20 degrees 83' 320i

I just did some extensive tuning up on my 1983 320i(jetronic) removal of heat shielf abover manifold, scraped years of **** off the motor and undercarige, radiator flush, all kinds of thing where done to where it shouldnt even be able to overheat..new waterpump and thermostat....new thermo switch. dude...WTF..still heats up! it gets to about 3/4 on the gauge when sitting..no hotter tho. when i turn the defrost on it jumps up a lil bit right away which is the opposite of what i would expect to happen and with the auxillary fan on it doesnt cool down. i dont get it. there is a slight smell of coolant tho...the previouse owner had an invoice that said it needed a heater core..but it heats up and the heat blows HOT.

HELP PLZ...could the heater core be causing my overheating issue? or would you think i have a bad relay or my gauge off?...it gets up to the middle BEFORE the thermostat opens so i'm thinkin the gauge is off or something.

I DO plan on replacing the heatercore eventually just to get rid of the smell..no visible leaks inside or out as far as coolant goes and it's full so wtf?!>?

I'm thinking the addition of a fan shroud may help as well...but if you know how to get this thing to run 20 degrees cooler....let me know.
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Old 10-01-2009, 05:32 PM
boostin'xr4 boostin'xr4 is offline
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Location: Florida, USA
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 22
Mein Auto: 1991 318I
Have you used an IR gun or a calibrated numerical temp gauge? Your gauge could simply be inaccurate.
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Old 10-03-2009, 08:22 AM
iyad_yd iyad_yd is offline
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Location: moon
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 48
Mein Auto: bmw e21 1978 316
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Old 01-08-2010, 05:17 PM
matilda320i matilda320i is offline
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Location: Tucson Arizona
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 17
Mein Auto: 1983 BMW 320i
I'm gonna throw this out there. Make sure your mixture of antifreeze is correct.. I had that problem for a while and that ended up being part of it.. I've also heard the thermo heat sensors. I don't currently have my manual at hand, but I think there's also a cold start guage.. I really don't know.
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Old 06-14-2010, 02:55 PM
davidgoerndt davidgoerndt is offline
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Location: Orlando, Florida
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 4
Mein Auto: 1982 320i
My 82 was doing the exact same thing. My problem was a partially clogged radiator. Installing that plus a new temp sender cured the problem.
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Old 06-17-2010, 09:05 PM
galaxyflier galaxyflier is offline
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Location: Saratoga Springs, NY
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 35
Mein Auto: 1981 320i (E21)
Sounds like the impeller blades on the water pump could be corroded. If it has had pure water or old worn out anti-freeze in the system for years, the blades will quite literally rust away. Never had this happen on my 320i, but it did when i bought my '79 Ford F-100.
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