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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 01-02-2017, 02:23 PM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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is behr oem for expansion tank?

mine is leaking and i was wondering what the oem brand is for the expansion tank, any good comments on behr?
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  #2  
Old 01-02-2017, 02:50 PM
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cdawg246 cdawg246 is offline
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Check out this tank from rein https://www.ecstuning.com/b-rein-par...111741167~ren/ it includes the tank - level sensor - cap for under $40 and it's made in germany. I'm getting it soon since I think mine is the original.
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Old 01-02-2017, 03:06 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Twenty years ago, you could say BMW reservoir made by Behr is good.

Virtually all aftermarket reservoir, incl. Behr is junk.
Been there done that, I now have a BMW reservoir, paid $90.
This is tricky business, either this or a potential head gasket job.
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Old 01-02-2017, 03:10 PM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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40 dollars for the level sensor and tank seems flimsy to me. Don't get me wrong. Sounds intriguing. I believe Behr has the sensor included too. How long does OEM last ?


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Old 01-02-2017, 03:18 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Trust me, stay away from Behr, Rein and all that stuff, there is a reason why Rein is $38.
The BMW reservoir may sound expensive, but at $90, you should get some 8y/80K or more out of it.
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Old 01-02-2017, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
Trust me, stay away from Behr, Rein and all that stuff, there is a reason why Rein is $38.
The BMW reservoir may sound expensive, but at $90, you should get some 8y/80K or more out of it.
+1, too much risk to save too few dollars by buying a cheap expansion tank.
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  #7  
Old 01-02-2017, 06:55 PM
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cdawg246 cdawg246 is offline
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How do you know if its a cheap tank or not until you try one. Hear me out before you start attacking me-if you look at the side of the tank i see no seam which indicates that its formed one piece not plastic welded together like others. Anyways bmw doesn't manufacture expansion tanks-they get them from behr/mahle. I cant argue with the fact that my tank is probably the original at 149k and still doesnt leak. And at that time behr tanks were produced in germany for bmw. Now they probably outsource these parts to china. Rein parts are produced in germany still and look to be awesome quality imo.
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Old 01-02-2017, 07:00 PM
neun neun is offline
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I bought a Behr expansion tank from FCP Euro as part of their cooling system overhaul kit. When the parts arrived, it indicated it was made in Germany. Perfect fit, over 1,000 miles on it since installation (2 weeks ago), no problems.
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  #9  
Old 01-02-2017, 07:36 PM
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cdawg246 cdawg246 is offline
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Correction: I thought rein parts were made in germany as per fcp euro's site. I guess rein in German means"pure" but on the box it says made in china from some other people who bought rein
parts in the past. I still think it's a quality tank regardless of this new found knowledge and going to try one out come spring.
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Old 01-02-2017, 08:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
Trust me, stay away from Behr, Rein and all that stuff, there is a reason why Rein is $38.
The BMW reservoir may sound expensive, but at $90, you should get some 8y/80K or more out of it.
You have had a Behr expansion tank fail on you?
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  #11  
Old 01-03-2017, 06:39 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neun View Post
I bought a Behr expansion tank from FCP Euro as part of their cooling system overhaul kit. When the parts arrived, it indicated it was made in Germany. Perfect fit, over 1,000 miles on it since installation (2 weeks ago), no problems.
During 1990s and up until 2008 or so (don't remember exact dates), BEHR reservoir was made in Germany.
For the last 8-10 years, it was made in China, search forum and you will see tons of Behr reservoir cracking after as soon as 1-2 years in service.

BTW, 1000 miles is not an indication of longevity.
A decent reservoir (such as what came with my 1998 528i) should last some 10y/100K.

PS: Next person with a Behr reservoir, please post photos, I didn't know that Behr is now made in Germany, maybe they bring their factory work back to Germany.
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  #12  
Old 01-03-2017, 08:21 AM
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Behr does manufacture aftermarket radiators and other cooling system parts. These are usually manufactured in South Africa or China. However, the E39 expansion tank is OE and manufactured in Germany (at least what we sell). Based on markings on the tank the Behr tank is likely repackaged since the logo on the tank is a Coolxpert (Modine) logo:



You can see where the BMW info has been removed as well:



For reference here is the Behr and Genuine tanks side by side as well:



Behr


Genuine
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Last edited by fcpeuro; 01-03-2017 at 08:29 AM.
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  #13  
Old 01-03-2017, 01:55 PM
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I only use Behr expansion tanks (and radiators) no issues. My replacement interval is 100k. Expansion tank was made in Germany...can't remember on the radiators, but I think South Africa? I've been through two sets, with no failures.

Rein products are globally sourced, so you cannot make a general statement where their stuff is made. Some is China, I have also seen Turkey, and eastern European countries, as well as Germany. I have used their coolant hoses with no issues, but they are all replaced at 100k interval with everything else.
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  #14  
Old 01-03-2017, 02:00 PM
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BTW, I think it was Mike Miller, the technician who writes for the BMWCCA magazine (Roundel) tech section, said the reason many plastic engine parts made in Germany fail, is because of the stringent recycling programs mandated there. They blend a lot of recycled plastic into their formulas now for manufacturing, and it is more difficult to ensure the same quality as you would get from "virgin" plastic. I don't know the veracity of that claim....just repeating what I have heard.
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  #15  
Old 01-03-2017, 02:55 PM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fcpeuro View Post
Behr does manufacture aftermarket radiators and other cooling system parts. These are usually manufactured in South Africa or China. However, the E39 expansion tank is OE and manufactured in Germany (at least what we sell). Based on markings on the tank the Behr tank is likely repackaged since the logo on the tank is a Coolxpert (Modine) logo:



You can see where the BMW info has been removed as well:



For reference here is the Behr and Genuine tanks side by side as well:



Behr


Genuine


I actually just bought a genuine BMW tank. So the behr unit would be the same??


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  #16  
Old 01-03-2017, 03:01 PM
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cdawg246 cdawg246 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540 M-Sport View Post
BTW, I think it was Mike Miller, the technician who writes for the BMWCCA magazine (Roundel) tech section, said the reason many plastic engine parts made in Germany fail, is because of the stringent recycling programs mandated there. They blend a lot of recycled plastic into their formulas now for manufacturing, and it is more difficult to ensure the same quality as you would get from "virgin" plastic. I don't know the veracity of that claim....just repeating what I have heard.
Wow! that's interesting because I was under the impression tank failure was due to manufacturing process not the recycled formula of the plastic. You learn something new everyday - and I can admit when I'm wrong if someone can back up their argument with facts. And once again fcp euro comes through with pictures and proves that they are the ones to buy parts from since they are knowledgeable and stand behind the products they sell with a lifetime warranty and free shipping over $50. Fcp euro and ecs tuning are awesome online retailers for the import community and we need to continue to support them regardless of trying to save a couple dollars with other online retailers.
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  #17  
Old 01-03-2017, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by berkeleydojah View Post
I actually just bought a genuine BMW tank. So the behr unit would be the same??


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Yes! One of the tricks you can learn here is who all the Original Equipment Suppliers where to BMW for the E39 series. For example, instead of buying the water pump for my 540 from BMW for $300+, I can buy the same pump, made by Saleri in Italy, for about $85! Same exact pump, just not in the BMW box.

Same with pullies and tensioners...I buy INA brand...same supplier to BMW, just not in the BMW box or plastic bag. I prefer to stick with OES/OEM unless there is a known better part from a third party. The thrust arm bushing from Meyle come to mind as one example. Those are much longer lasting than the oem Lemforder. I currently have over 130,000 miles on my Meyle thrust arm bushings. I never got more than 60k out of the Lemforder...often times much less.
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  #18  
Old 01-03-2017, 05:02 PM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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so i basically wasted 65 dollars into getting the bmw tank instead of the behr tank?
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  #19  
Old 01-03-2017, 05:03 PM
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The Behr expansion tank should be around $40 also, if it doesn't come in the BMW box, or baggy. At least that is the case for the 540.
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Old 01-03-2017, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by berkeleydojah View Post
so i basically wasted 65 dollars into getting the bmw tank instead of the behr tank?
No.
There are variations even in the oem products. Sometimes they are the same (passed all QC with labels scratched off), sometimes it passes oem spec but not BMW, and sometimes the overall quality just dives (cn90 experience).
Labeled BMW parts meet all the quality standards.
So did you overpay?
I'd say you paid more for guaranteed quality.
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Old 01-03-2017, 06:02 PM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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No.

There are variations even in the oem products. Sometimes they are the same (passed all QC with labels scratched off), sometimes it passes oem spec but not BMW, and sometimes the overall quality just dives (cn90 experience).

Labeled BMW parts meet all the quality standards.

So did you overpay?

I'd say you paid more for guaranteed quality.


Well I mean I see that the behr service is just a scratched of BMW part. How would I pay for guaranteed quality if it's the same exact unit with only the logo scratched off


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Old 01-03-2017, 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by berkeleydojah View Post
Well I mean I see that the behr service is just a scratched of BMW part. How would I pay for guaranteed quality if it's the same exact unit with only the logo scratched off


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You don't/can't. They came off the same production line. There is only one mold, so the ones wholesaled to third party sellers they grind the "BMW" logo off, they have to from a legal and trademark stand point.

The BMW dealer will try to convince you that those are "factory seconds" or some such...believe what you want.

Nothing wrong with supporting our forum advertisers like FCP...they can always offer helpful advice on what to purchase.
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Old 01-03-2017, 06:35 PM
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Because it has retained the quality of the BMW logo.
There are two scenarios where the label could be scratched off
1) extra product on a BMW qc run. Say BMW orders 90k units but they produce in 100k increments. So the remaining 10k can be sold (labels scratched)
2) a lot is produced that doesn't meet BMW qc standards but is functionally useable. Say the two halves need to meet within .05" (flush) but a lot is produced at .06". No good for BMW but fine for others (labels scratched).
A lot of times there will be no issues with either.
Most of the time the BMW qc is better than other production but sometimes not (vanos seals).
So did you overpay? I say no, you bought better parts. Is the better part worth the delta? Get a few experiences like cn90 and probably. Others have different experiences.
Bottom line: You are the judge of the quality price balance.

Edit: fair enough, third scenario of molding per above. But I still say the qc plays a part.

Last edited by TheAngryBear; 01-03-2017 at 06:39 PM.
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  #24  
Old 01-03-2017, 07:10 PM
bmw blue bmw blue is offline
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Behr/Hella expansion tanks, E39.

And here is my insurance policy.
Click image for larger version

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I keep an extra one on hand at all times.

The one in my 2000 528i is stamped with the BMW roundel from
the factory, its a (BEHR). It doesn't have any other identifying stickers on it that I
remember, FCP EURO purchase. Oct.2014...Complete cooling system overhaul.
(as a side note, BEHR thermostat failure,replaced under warranty, lasted two
years) Failed open, It got lazy. No harm. Replaced for free and my labor.

The aftermarket Hella/Behr(shown) has the roundel scratched
off but also has the stickers that identify date of manufacture and
place of manufacture. This is my backup. Germany Manufacture.

I would have to pull out the FCP EURO product to confirm place of origin
and manufacture date. I purchased the real deal BMW one and not
just the BEHR branded one. Probably the same but FCP has lifetime
warranty so..........And i got a backup to get me by if that one fails.

Anyways, it's good to keep an extra one around for the unexpected event that
is inevitable......POP GOES THE WEASEL......

Not worried about my daily commute, but if I go long distance then this is
like an indispensable tool that must be on hand at all times.

I recommend one in reserve at all times.

And i got a well sorted cooling system in my ride....Even so, gotta be prepared.

Cheers.
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Last edited by bmw blue; 01-03-2017 at 09:15 PM. Reason: wrong term
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  #25  
Old 01-04-2017, 06:09 AM
berkeleydojah berkeleydojah is offline
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What do people think about the zionsville tank, which also has the shroud welded with it? 343 bucks which isn't too bad considering you never have to worry about the tank ever again


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