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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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  #51  
Old 06-21-2011, 07:38 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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To digress a bit, Volvo rotor is now made in China (a Chinese now owns Volvo, whatever it means!), and comes in a blue box saying "genuine Volvo part", geezzz!!!

I don't mind buying Chinese food or Chinese fireworks for July 04, but Chinese car parts, they are 2000 years behind the Western world...

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  #52  
Old 08-04-2011, 01:54 PM
NNY528i NNY528i is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
I may be late to the party but I saw cn90's request early this morning but I had an interview to go to so the pictures had to wait.

I see that there are already pics ... but I confirm there is no such flap in my OEM Behr expansion tank.

Both holes have a clear shot through sans obstructions. The only thing that is there is that mysterious black slider which goes over both holes like an upside down cup.

I'm still not sure what that slider does; nor am I certain of its proper position with respect to the black stalk ... so anyone who replaces their expansion tank is asked to cut open that section and tell us what they find.

Here are the pics (now redundant) I took as a response to this query

THIS FIRST HOLE IS CLEARLY UNOBSTRUCTED:


THIS SECOND HOLE IS ALSO UNOBSTRUCTED (SEE THE WHITISH STICK I POKED IN THE BOTTOM FOR THE CAMERA TO SEE DOWN TO):



ABOUT THE ONLY THING IN THE WAY IS THE 'MYSTERIOUS SLIDER' AS CAN BE SEEN BY THIS SIDE VIEW:
If I dont miss my guess the black slider is the float for the level stick, the white slider is the float for the level sensor(it has a little magnet in it)
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  #53  
Old 08-04-2011, 03:25 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
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I found that my behr wasnt the same exsact size as the first one i replaced... that was must have been OEm Bmw back in 06
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  #54  
Old 08-04-2011, 03:44 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NNY528i View Post
If I dont miss my guess the black slider is the float for the level stick, the white slider is the float for the level sensor(it has a little magnet in it)
I don't know 'what' the black slider does ...

But, I do know the white float handles BOTH the level stick & the electrical sensor.

As shown in the pic below, the black slider is on the other side of the expansion tank, behind a thin black plastic bulkhead which forms a separate chamber, from the white float, electrical sensor, and level stick attached to the white float.

Details here:
- BMW E39 failed radiator & failed expansion tank pictorial autopsy

Ideas always welcome for what the black slider actually accomplishes!

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  #55  
Old 08-11-2011, 07:42 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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For the record, this quote today sums up one user's feelings rather well:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Radiator issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaseRobert View Post
after a preventive maintenance cooling system replacement on my M62 I had to go through THREE tanks before I got one that would last more than 4 months.

On the first two the problem was almost microscopic pin-holes secondary to crappy materials, crappy casting technique and non-existant quality control at Behr's Chinese factory.

That's right: CHINESE. Nicht Deutschland!
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  #56  
Old 08-12-2011, 08:00 PM
Reefin' Dude Reefin' Dude is offline
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i am on my second expansion tank replacement. M62. the first one i bought a Behr. started leaking somewhere near the sensor port. bought a cheap ebay one this time. i do not mind spending $30 every year for a new expansion tank, but i do mind spending $70 a year on one. if there are that many out there that are failing within a year, then i am not going to try elsewhere. i am also running NPG+ is my car. the pressure is never up in the tank. the fluid would drain out after i stopped. it was not coming out while i was driving.

G~
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  #57  
Old 10-13-2011, 11:18 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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By way of cross reference, see this thread from today:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > cooling system overhaul, not always a good idea

Quote:
Originally Posted by RR_540i View Post
18 months ago i did a cooling system overhaul even though it had been trouble free... last month i had a coolant leak..... it was coming from a hairline crack in the new Meyle expansion tank. the crack is barely visible but you can feel it with your fingernail..... so dug up the old expansion tank from the garage and installed it back ..... problem fixed, but now i have an old expansion tank.
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  #58  
Old 11-10-2011, 09:53 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Apparently today was posted yet another defective Behr China expansion tank:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Genuine BMW Expansion Tank
Quote:
Originally Posted by z168 View Post
I replaced my expansion tank in July2010 with what I thought was "OEM" labeled as Hella-Behr and had "made in china" below it. I didnt make anything of it and installed it. As soon as I installed it the sensor level was leaking so I had to make "adjustments" for it. 14months later its leaking again.

So I decided not to mickey mouse with the reservoir and bought genuine BMW tank, level sensor and cap. Also got a brass bleeder for it which I will eventually do on my other cars as well.

No leaks, im happy. Lets see how long this one will last. Took pics of a Hella-Behr next to the Genuine Unit. Sorry for the lousy pics but you can tell right away from the finish
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  #59  
Old 11-10-2011, 10:48 AM
BadBrad BadBrad is offline
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I bought a Behr expansion tank along with other cooling components about 13 months ago from EAC Tuning and just noticed that I was losing a small amount coolant each week. After inspection I located the leakage at the bottom of the tank near the fitting for the level sensor. I guess I'll just chock it up to experience and go buiy a genuine unit from Tischer (getBMWparts.com).
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  #60  
Old 11-10-2011, 12:40 PM
Reefin' Dude Reefin' Dude is offline
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that is exactly what happened with me. i am sure it is not EAC Tuning's fault. the timing on yours matches pretty close to the timing on mine.

G~
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  #61  
Old 11-12-2011, 02:44 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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For the cross-linked record, we have new information on how better to tell if a Chinese-made Behr Hella expansion tank needs to be sent back upon arrival!
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Genuine BMW Expansion Tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by timarnold View Post
Just a couple of comments on the reservoir photos, from a molding perspective. The reservoir on the right is a pretty poor molding.
1) There is heavy sinking due to the internal ribbing. This is typically caused by not adequately packing out the mold during injection or running the mold at too low a temperature.
2) There is a heavy knit line running up the middle of the part where the material flowed around the mold & met in the middle. This is emblematic of either too low a mold temperature or too low an injection barrell temperature. This causes a weak point that can either split or leak.
3) On the top of the part, the one in the back is shiny around the gate. This is where the plastic shrank away from the mold cavity, again a sign of inadequate filling of the mold.
4) There is a little bit of "splay" (shiny snot like areas) running through both parts, but the one on the right a little more. The recycling symbol indicates the part is made of 6/6 Nylon, which needs to be dried extensively prior to molding. Otherwise moisture in the resin causes the splay. This also degrades the mechanical properties of the finished part.
5) Most likely both parts are made of 6/6 Nylon, but this is a material grade, not a brand. There are literally hundreds of different brands of nylon compounded and they are very definitely all created equal.

The one with the BMW logo is a significantly better quality of molding.
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  #62  
Old 03-07-2012, 09:38 PM
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For the crosslinked record, see this thread today:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > BEHR expansion tank leaks after 5000 miles

[quote=E39_Ryda;6686128]... cooling system job back in Nov 2011. I bought a BEHR expansion tank as recommended on the forums and it even has Made in Germany stamped on the bottom. This morning I was checking my oil and saw this! I've driven about 5000 miles since the replacement and I couldn't believe how quick this tank started leaking around the seams. I'll be contacting www.oembimmerparts.com and see if they'll warranty this or offer me a refund.
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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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  #63  
Old 03-15-2012, 06:44 AM
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To crosslink for the convenience of others, this somewhat related pictorial failed-expansion tank thread was opened recently:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > 97 528i Expansion Tank questions w pics
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  #64  
Old 07-27-2012, 06:08 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Add me to the list of a crack at the seam of "GP" (not Behr) Reservoir.

In May 2006 @ 90K miles, I overhauled the coolant system. The Reservoir (PN 17111723520) was made by "GP", not sure of the "Country of Origin" (was it "Made in Germany" or "Made in China"? I don't know).

Fastforward 6 years/40K miles later, I notice that I lose approx. 1 cup of coolant every month, and the bottom of the reservoir was wet. The bottom line: very fine crack on the FRONT side of reservoir and the Seam.

One thing I have always done, when I replace any parts preventively and if the part is still good, I keep it. So it is a good thing I still kept the factory reservoir (made in 1997), so it goes back in for now until I sort it out.

So the questions:

1. Is everyone happy with BMW dealer reservoir (someone told me it is made by "GP")?

2. The Behr reservoir (made in China): I am staying away from this!

3. Online vendors also sell "Meyle" reservoir: is it any good?

4. My last resort is to mod the BMW using the Reservoir from a 1998 V70 (the 850 series) Reservoir.
The thing is: my 1998 Volvo V70 reservoir from factory is still chucking along at 14y/120K miles. Also, people in Volvo forum rarely report reservoir issues!

--------
Here is the pic of the crack at the seam on the Reservoir by "GP" after 6y/40K miles:


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  #65  
Old 07-28-2012, 08:42 AM
mbell666 mbell666 is offline
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I had two behr expansion tanks fail on me. One lasted 7 months one 9 months. They were fitted by a indie which kindly fitted me a genuine BMW one 16 months after the original work.

Leak was from the bottom both times, so presuming these were both China made tanks. Pretty shocked at behr quality control! They are doing there brand much good.
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  #66  
Old 07-28-2012, 09:28 AM
Ed Cheung Ed Cheung is offline
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When I was replacing the cooling parts last month, The OEM one still looks ok, so I rather use it than the new BEHR I got, I am keeping it as a spare in the trunk in case the old one **** out on me.
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  #67  
Old 07-28-2012, 09:48 PM
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Jason5driver Jason5driver is offline
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Cn,
Buy an OEM expansion tank from:
1. www.TheBMWpartstore.com or,
2. www.EbmwParts.com
Both are dealers, and their cost is around $70 for the tank...
http://www.thebmwpartstore.com/oempa...111723520.html
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Last edited by Jason5driver; 07-28-2012 at 09:49 PM.
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  #68  
Old 07-29-2012, 05:10 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Thanks Jason,

As you can see my reservoir from 1997 is still good (I had it in the trunk!).
I don't know who made the reservoir for BMW in 1996/1997, maybe Behr but made in Germany like the good old days.

Somewhere in the forum I see that the dealer BMW tank has the "GP" marking on it. I have to search. My guess is "GP" lasts about 5 years, what a shame.

------------
This post seems to indicate that current BMW tank is made by "GP":

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=607167

Quote:
Originally Posted by izzyinstl View Post
I did a little further research on these and called a dealer and he pulled an expansion tank and advised me that the tank sold by them (bmw of south atlanta) has the bmw stamp and it's manufacturer logo on it is GP. So I guess GP (what ever that stands for) is the current manufacturer of this part. Just so everyone knows.
He also checked my vin and confirmed that my 528i does NOT have a level sensor.

again, thanks CN90!!!!

Last edited by cn90; 07-29-2012 at 05:14 AM.
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  #69  
Old 07-29-2012, 10:04 AM
acoste acoste is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
As you can see my reservoir from 1997 is still good (I had it in the trunk!).
So as mine - 8/1997. 155k miles, still in the car and working fine.
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  #70  
Old 07-30-2012, 10:39 AM
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Jason5driver Jason5driver is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
Thanks Jason,

As you can see my reservoir from 1997 is still good (I had it in the trunk!).
I don't know who made the reservoir for BMW in 1996/1997, maybe Behr but made in Germany like the good old days.

Somewhere in the forum I see that the dealer BMW tank has the "GP" marking on it. I have to search. My guess is "GP" lasts about 5 years, what a shame.

------------
This post seems to indicate that current BMW tank is made by "GP":

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=607167
I found this link showing some possibilities for manufacturer origins...
http://www.alibaba.com/trade/search?...oduct_en&fsb=y
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  #71  
Old 07-30-2012, 10:59 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acoste View Post
So as mine - 8/1997. 155k miles, still in the car and working fine.
Thanks for the follow-up.
Maybe I should leave the 1997 factory reservoir in for now!
Why mess with success LOL!
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  #72  
Old 08-29-2012, 09:44 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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For the cross-linked record, another early failure was reported today:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > 8 month lifespan of coolant reservoir?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1BadE39 View Post
I believe I did my entire cooling system overhaul in December. I noticed Monday that there was a small wet area on the ground under my car. I really didn't think too much of it until I was walking out to my car after work and saw the same thing. This morning my check coolant level indicator came on so I topped it off and off I went. So I just checked now when I got home I saw there is a tiny drip coming from the fan shroud behind the reservoir. My question is how long do the reservoirs usually last and can someone tell me the best brand. I got it from autohaus and have heard the ones they have from China aren't the greatest. And is 9 months the lifespan of aftermarket China parts?
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  #73  
Old 09-26-2012, 05:00 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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As Fudman recently stated, I'm beginning to lean toward the new adage to buy only Behr expansion tanks - and - even then - only from the dealer.

But I'm not sure of that yet.

Here's my story:
a) My 2002 OEM expansion tank lasted until 2010 (which is good service) as I've had the car since it was still under the original factory warranty and I've checked the date codes
b) Even then, the OEM expansion tank didn't leak, per se (the radiator went, so I replaced the expansion tank - and in doing so, broke off the rotted nipple, yet I must say the bobber separated about a year or two prior to the replacement)
c) I replaced with a tank from Max, whom we all know and respect.
d) Now, only two years later, that tank is (apparently) leaking! Sigh.



If this turns out to be the expansion tank, I'd be disappointed I got only two years of pretty tame use out of it.

Now, here's the real reason I'm posting. Notice the color of the old and new bobber:


I wonder. My initial (wholly unsubstantiated) hypothesis is that the factory Behr bobber is white while the aftermarket bobber is red.

Is this the case?

If so, then we can advise anyone with a red bobber (like mine) to be cautious.

QUESTION:
But first, I'd like to ask what COLOR the bobber is for the various Behr tanks (China, South Africa, and BMW dealer)?
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  #74  
Old 09-26-2012, 10:58 AM
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Jason5driver Jason5driver is offline
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I think my original expansion tank float is white...
I would try to possibly return your bad expansion tank, and just get a new OEM tank from the dealer...!
Talk to Mike at www.TheBMWpartStore.com .
http://www.thebmwpartstore.com/?i=2&...n=8&type=parts
Cooling system, Reservoir
525i, 528i, 530i - 2.5l, 2.8l, 3.0l
List Price : $98.22
Your Price : $74.26

Thanks!
Jason
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  #75  
Old 09-26-2012, 11:43 AM
Reefin' Dude Reefin' Dude is offline
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i just bought a new BMW expansion tank for my 540. it has the BMW emblem and came in the BMW box. it has a red float. i am not sure if the float was ever white in a 540 expansion tank.

G~
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