Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-28-2012, 03:57 PM
GPom GPom is offline
GPom
Location: Bethesda, MD
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 16
Mein Auto: BMW 2004 530i
Repair Upper Radiator Hose Neck

Ok, I know I cheated on this DIY, and didn't do the right thing (which is to replace the radiator), but with a $600 quote from my mechanic I decided to try to fix my cracked upper radiator hose neck. The OEM radiator alone runs about $200 give or take, wholesale.

It started with a leak in my plastic thermostat housing, which I took to my mechanic to change along with my water pump since the bearing was wobbling. That alone cost me $600 installed (housing, thermostat, water pump, antifreeze). As I've read on many posts for BMWs and Mercedes (and I'm sure for many other cars), when the plastic radiator necks and nipples get old and brittle they can break when you remove the hose. In my case, when my mechanic pulled the hose off the neck cracked with only about 1 inch left to attach the hose back. See the attached pictures.

My original BMW hose (which surprisingly is in good condition) has ridges inside the end, and the radiator hose neck also has ridges. Good for holding adhesive. Many folks on this forum and others have considered epoxy or gasket adhesives to help keep the hose on, but if you do nothing it will likely pop off at some point and immediately overheat. I looked at all the ususal adhesives by Permatex, JB Weld, Locktight, etc., and JB Weld Quik has a 4 minute set time in as low as 40 degrees f, and can work in operating temps up to 300 degrees f (radiators at 15 lbs pressure only get to about 230 degrees f). I cleaned both ends with acetone and sanded to rough them up a little, then I slathered the epoxy on thick inside the hose ridges, and in the plastic radiator neck ridges. I was pleased that when I pushed on the hose a quarter inch of the epoxy wrapped around the plastic hose stop on the hose neck, which pretty much assures it is secured on the neck and is not going to pop off. But, now replacing the hose it would require cutting and pealing it off. Not such a bad tradeoff. I have both a 1998 E39 and a 2004 E60, and I'll be on the lookout for this problem in my 2004 now too, since that plastic may also be getting brittle.

GPom
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	BMW 98 528i Radiator Upper Hose Neck.jpg
Views:	1119
Size:	40.1 KB
ID:	309987   Click image for larger version

Name:	BMW 98 Upper Radiator Hose End.jpg
Views:	711
Size:	57.1 KB
ID:	309988   Click image for larger version

Name:	BMW 98 528i Epoxied Hose Neck.jpg
Views:	715
Size:	28.4 KB
ID:	309989   Click image for larger version

Name:	JB Weld Epoxy 300 degrees.jpg
Views:	589
Size:	80.5 KB
ID:	309993   Click image for larger version

Name:	JB Weld Hi Temp Epoxy.jpg
Views:	389
Size:	80.8 KB
ID:	309994  

__________________
2004 530i: silver, 6 spd manual, sports pkg, premium pkg, cold pkg, Logic 7 prem sound, xenon adaptive, Dakota
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 01-29-2012, 08:32 AM
uncmozo uncmozo is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: upstate NY
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 327
Mein Auto: 2002 530i 5 speed
The part I don't get is you took it to a mechanic for the thermostat and water pump replacement. Then you decided to cheat death and do an epoxy repair in the radiator yourself. If you did the pump and thermo install, you would have saved enough to buy the new radiator. And gained some valuable experience as a bonus.

I sometimes use epoxy at work, and the resuts are always iffy - sometimes it holds great and sometimes not. The problem is you never know if and when it's going to fail. If and when this repair fails, you're going to have about 30 seconds to pull over.

Just my experience.

Jerry
__________________
1995 525i 5 speed - sold at 225,000 miles
2002 530i 5 speed - 160,000 miles
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-29-2012, 09:31 AM
BigCo540i's Avatar
BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
The Usual Suspect
Location: Richmond, VA
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 2,713
Mein Auto: 98 E39 540i - 09 E90 328i
This won't work for long. Replace the radiator.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-29-2012, 10:38 AM
1BadE39 1BadE39 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Jersey Shore
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 131
Mein Auto: 1997 540i
I tried this myself awhile back... Go get a new radiator. The first time you get on the gas to pass someone or merge with traffic its gonna blow trust me.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-29-2012, 10:39 AM
shaftdrive's Avatar
shaftdrive shaftdrive is offline
Matching beemer & bimmer
Location: USA
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 624
Mein Auto: 1999 K1200 & 2001 525
Do a search for "JB Weld" and you'll find others who have done the same 'repair' (and from which I borrow my examples below).

As a McGyver, it's pure genius! It's worthy of reward, as it will get you home from a breakdown in the middle of your cherished vacation across country.

It will also buy you time to research & order the parts (which, for a radiator, are about $200).

And, if it wasn't the biggest danger to an engine's life blood, it would even qualify for the American Ingenuity award.

However, given that the cooling system kills more E39 engines than sheer miles driven, it may actually be Sanford & Sons to keep that repair in place long term.

I do give you kudos for ingenuity and cleverness - and for showing pictures which helps others stuck on the road with Internet. It would even be nice for you to stock the radiator, and then drive for as long as it takes for the ingenious repair to break again.

That would be of the best interest for all. Does it last forever or does it spring a leak in just a few months? Please do keep us informed as I hope it lasts forever - but I don't know if it will.

Last edited by shaftdrive; 01-29-2012 at 10:41 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-29-2012, 11:14 AM
1999 BMW 540i 6 1999 BMW 540i 6 is offline
Registered User
Location: West L.a
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 40
Mein Auto: 1999 540i m 6spd
Mine broke in the same area. Broken engine mount caused it.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-29-2012, 02:34 PM
chiefwej's Avatar
chiefwej chiefwej is offline
Freude am Fahren
Location: Tucson, AZ
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 2,306
Mein Auto: 2003 540i/6 //m-tech
That "repair" will not hold up. Although the I6 cooling system seems to last a bit longer thamn the V8, a single overheat of an I6 generally spells doom for the engine. $200 for a radiator and a couple hours work will look cheap when compaired to blown head gasket and warped heads.

BTW: Look at the radiator cap. You will notice that it says 2 bar. That's not 15 psi, that is 29 psi. Our cars run at twice the pressure of most. Now how's your confidence in holding your cooling system together with some glue?
__________________
chiefwej 2003 540i ///m-tech 6-speed
Black Sapphire Metallic w/gray

Last edited by chiefwej; 01-29-2012 at 02:36 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-29-2012, 03:33 PM
cwpo1 cwpo1 is offline
Registered User
Location: Macon, GA
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 35
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW 525i
Not to pile on, but the epoxy will not hold. I just had to do a patch while waiting on a radiator to come in. It lasted around two weeks before the air bubbles became a leak. I got a CSF radiator for around $80 bucks from ******************.com.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-29-2012, 03:34 PM
cwpo1 cwpo1 is offline
Registered User
Location: Macon, GA
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 35
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW 525i
auto part warehouse dot com
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-29-2012, 03:47 PM
Fudman's Avatar
Fudman Fudman is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Sudbury, MA
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 6,356
Mein Auto: '02 530i Sport auto
+1 to the above. And the radiator can be had for about $150 shipped. Given the risks and the cost, there is really no reason why not to replace it.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-30-2012, 01:07 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 22,082
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Quote:
Originally Posted by GPom View Post
The OEM radiator alone runs about $200 give or take, wholesale.
There was a post today where the OP bought a new radiator for about $80:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Notes from my cooling system overhaul
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwpo1 View Post
I used a CSF radiator 80.00 from auto part warehouse dot com OEM replacement
Quote:
Originally Posted by GPom View Post
the plastic radiator necks and nipples get old and brittle they can break when you remove the hose.
The neck is fatal but lots of us simply replace the nipple (ask me how I know).

Quote:
Originally Posted by GPom View Post
JB Weld Quik has a 4 minute set time in as low as 40 degrees f, and can work in operating temps up to 300 degrees f (radiators at 15 lbs pressure only get to about 230 degrees f).
See also:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > jb weld seems to have worked on my radiator...



Quote:
Originally Posted by cwpo1 View Post
Not to pile on, but the epoxy will not hold. It lasted around two weeks before the air bubbles became a leak.
Your information is excellent!

And, the prices you paid are absolutely out of this world.

But, still ... I'm curious why you didn't just buy a new radiator nipple?
__________________
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; 01-30-2012 at 01:08 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-30-2012, 09:00 PM
cwpo1 cwpo1 is offline
Registered User
Location: Macon, GA
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 35
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW 525i
It would not hold with the clip broken.
__________________

"With a small group of committed people, anything is possible"
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-04-2013, 03:27 PM
GPom GPom is offline
GPom
Location: Bethesda, MD
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 16
Mein Auto: BMW 2004 530i
Followup from Original Author - JB Weld fix to Hose Nipple

It's been nearly a year since I did the upper radiator hose plastic nipple fix on my E39 using the high temperature JB Weld Quick epoxy ( JB Weld Quik has a 4 minute set time in as low as 40 degrees f, and can work in operating temps up to 300 degrees f. Rradiators at 15 lbs pressure only get to about 230 degrees f).

After 20,000 miles and a year, a lot of it on highways with max radiator flow, it holds great. Still very solid. I think the way I did it (see the pics) the epoxy latched onto the back of the nipple stop, and really grabs it. The specific high temp epoxy is excellent too.

If you have the time and interest in changing the radiator that's the best way to go, at about $200+ and a fair amount of time, but consider this as another approach if the rest of the cooling system is good. If not, change the water pump, housing and thermostat while you're in there.

It's a shame that BMW and some others make the hose nipples out of plastic, since they get brittle and can crack when you change a hose. Should be out of metal, but we're stuck with plastic, at least on these older E39s. I don't know if my E60 has metal, I hope so.
__________________
2004 530i: silver, 6 spd manual, sports pkg, premium pkg, cold pkg, Logic 7 prem sound, xenon adaptive, Dakota
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-04-2013, 10:01 PM
champaign777's Avatar
champaign777 champaign777 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Champ
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,052
Mein Auto: 2003 530 Sport Twins
OP , dont play Russian roulette
Radiator costs 130$ , just replace it
You dont want to overheat your engine which cost $3000 - $4000 , dont you
GL
__________________

Last edited by champaign777; 01-04-2013 at 10:03 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-05-2013, 10:11 AM
bluebee's Avatar
bluebee bluebee is offline
Seek to understand,^Value
Location: San Jose, California
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 22,082
Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
Quote:
Originally Posted by champaign777 View Post
You dont want to overheat your engine which cost $3000 - $4000 , dont you
GL
When that repair goes, all the fluid will leak out fast.

Just ask these people (I stopped at 50 overheated ruined engines):
(1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8) (9) (10) (11) (12) (13) (14) (15) (16) (17) (18) (19) (20) (21) (22) (23) (24) (25) (26) (27) (28) (29) (30) (31) (32) (33) (34) (35) (36) (37) (38) (39) (40) (41) (42) (43) (44) (45) (46) (47) (48) (49) (50)
__________________
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
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
hose connection, hose neck crack, radiator hose neck


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:01 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms