1999 BMW 528i overheating problems - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums



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 12-22-2016, 01:40 AM
dani_e39 dani_e39 is offline
Registered User
Location: Brisbane Australia
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: E39 1999 BMW 528i
1999 BMW 528i overheating problems

I purchased a 1999 BMW 528i with 152000kms (just under a 100000 miles) on the clock in July 2016. Since then I have driven about 4000kms (2500 miles) in it without any problems.

Three weeks ago the car suddenly started to overheat whilst driving. I took it to a BMW specialist and he replaced the water pump and thermostat. He tested the car and everything was fine. He first thought the head gasket was blown but according to him that's not the case.

The car has been driving fine since then until today when it started to overheat again. The temp gauge goes very close to the red area and then goes back the middle again. This pattern repeated itself during the 30 minute drive with actually going into the red once. I pulled over for 10 minutes and tried again. The temp gauge then went almost into the red area and then back to the middle again repeating the pattern again. The engine runs very smooth and this problem is only recent. Please advice?
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2  
Old 12-22-2016, 04:43 AM
ztom's Avatar
ztom ztom is offline
I gotta have more cowbell
Location: Thousand Oaks CA
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 895
Mein Auto: 1997 528i
If filled & bled then probably head crack. Can have Indy pull plugs & pressurize radiator, dip swab into cylinders to see which has coolant leaked in.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-22-2016, 05:32 AM
MKJS MKJS is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Texas
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,998
Mein Auto: '99 540iA
First, I don't think your head is cracked and doesn't have a blown head gasket... yet. I say this because, IMO, it would overheat every time driven, not occasionally as you write it is doing, but it will have a cracked head or blown head gasket in short order if you don't get on it immediately.

Next, 6's are VERY sensitive to over heat. Do not let the car get into the red. The temp gauge is mediated and will lie to you about the actual temp of the motor by at least 40*C. That is, while the temp gauge is centered the temp can already be up 40*C! Don't drive the car at all until you do a coolant refresh.

You need fix the cause of the overheat or you will be looking for a new head, or new car.

You might need a new radiator, or fan clutch, or likely both. These components are expendable, they will not last for ever, and the radiator cannot be re-cored like in the old days. Throw it out, get a new one of good quality. While your at it, replace the rad hoses before they blow, which they will at some point. Why wait for that and go through again hoping the head is not ruined??

And don't forget to get a new plastic fan for your new fan clutch. The blades fatigue and fly off denting the hood and cutting various hoses. Don't wait for that to happen, throw out the old one and get a new one.

Parts list for you:

Radiator
All hoses
Fan Clutch (Sachs)
Plastic fan
Expansion tank/cap/bleed screw
Fan Shroud if needed

This is no place for cheep ebay parts. Buy good parts or you will be replacing the cheep parts in little time, and again, hoping the over heat didn't ruin the motor.

Jim

Last edited by MKJS; 12-22-2016 at 06:03 AM.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #4  
Old 12-22-2016, 02:51 PM
bmw blue's Avatar
bmw blue bmw blue is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Chicago,il.
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,164
Mein Auto: 2000 BMW 528i Steptronic
1999 528i Overheat Problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dani_e39 View Post
I purchased a 1999 BMW 528i with 152000kms (just under a 100000 miles) on the clock in July 2016. Since then I have driven about 4000kms (2500 miles) in it without any problems.

Three weeks ago the car suddenly started to overheat whilst driving. I took it to a BMW specialist and he replaced the water pump and thermostat. He tested the car and everything was fine. He first thought the head gasket was blown but according to him that's not the case.

The car has been driving fine since then until today when it started to overheat again. The temp gauge goes very close to the red area and then goes back the middle again. This pattern repeated itself during the 30 minute drive with actually going into the red once. I pulled over for 10 minutes and tried again. The temp gauge then went almost into the red area and then back to the middle again repeating the pattern again. The engine runs very smooth and this problem is only recent. Please advice?
It's summer Down Under now right? Does the overheat condition occur in stop and go
traffic only? If so, you need to check the fan clutch for correct operation. It should
lock up/engage when engine is (HOT) idling or during stop and go traffic and then disengage
when you get moving again.

Your electric cooling fan is there for assistance if your car gets really (HOT) or if the
fan clutch is failing to do its job.

Does your Air conditioning work? If your AC works you can check and see if
your electric fan works by switching on the AC. Fan should come on. But, that test
is not definitive for the electric fan and proper operation when the car gets real (HOT).
There is a temperature switch on the lower radiator hose that is prone to fail
over time that tells the DME to turn the electric fan on during severe cooling
system heat occurrences.

If both are not working, I suspect you will have these overheat symptoms
especially during stop and go traffic. Does this overheat condition occur if you
are on a extended highway drive?

Knowing how to bleed these cars correctly is very important as well.

At the milage you have, your car is overdue for a (COMPLETE) cooling
system overhaul if it has never been done. Got any history on the car?
A new thermostat and water pump is just the start.

I would advise you not to drive it until you figure this overheat condition
to its end.

Much info can be found on this board in regards to your problems.

Cheers.
__________________

Beisan Vanos Repair, EMP Stewart Water Pump, Aluminum Water Pump Pulley, Behr Electric Fan, Sachs Fan clutch,
18pc Lemforder Suspension Kit w/Koni Sports+H&R Springs,
E46 Intake Boot W/AFE Dry Air Filter, Conforti Shark Injector,
Liqui Moly Leichtlauf High Tech 5W40 Motor Oil, Pentosin Full Synthetic Transmission Fluid and 75-90 Motul Full Synthetic Differential Oil.
Michelin Pilot Sports (summer), Continental DWS (winter).
190,500 miles and counting.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-22-2016, 07:41 PM
dani_e39 dani_e39 is offline
Registered User
Location: Brisbane Australia
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 3
Mein Auto: E39 1999 BMW 528i
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw blue View Post
It's summer Down Under now right? Does the overheat condition occur in stop and go

traffic only? If so, you need to check the fan clutch for correct operation. It should

lock up/engage when engine is (HOT) idling or during stop and go traffic and then disengage

when you get moving again.



Your electric cooling fan is there for assistance if your car gets really (HOT) or if the

fan clutch is failing to do its job.



Does your Air conditioning work? If your AC works you can check and see if

your electric fan works by switching on the AC. Fan should come on. But, that test

is not definitive for the electric fan and proper operation when the car gets real (HOT).

There is a temperature switch on the lower radiator hose that is prone to fail

over time that tells the DME to turn the electric fan on during severe cooling

system heat occurrences.



If both are not working, I suspect you will have these overheat symptoms

especially during stop and go traffic. Does this overheat condition occur if you

are on a extended highway drive?



Knowing how to bleed these cars correctly is very important as well.



At the milage you have, your car is overdue for a (COMPLETE) cooling

system overhaul if it has never been done. Got any history on the car?

A new thermostat and water pump is just the start.



I would advise you not to drive it until you figure this overheat condition

to its end.



Much info can be found on this board in regards to your problems.



Cheers.


It's unfortunately overheating during driving (slower speeds) as well. I haven't had a chance to drive it on the highway as in this condition I'm too scared. I do have a history on the car and it's always been well maintained. Yes it's summer down under here and it's quite hot and I've understood that cars can play up in the heat.


Sent from my iPhone using Bimmerfest mobile app
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-05-2020, 07:32 PM
adjeidennis adjeidennis is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Posts: 1
Mein Auto:
i really need a reply to this my e39 was overheating so i changed the radiator the water pump and the thermostat. i was on the road for 70miles and it started to overheat again i realised something by accident i lost the bleeding screw and contiuned my journey without it i toped up water periodically and surprisingly it did not overheat.
whats the risk in taking the bleeding screw off
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-06-2020, 05:35 AM
effduration effduration is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: New England
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 457
Mein Auto: '99 528i, '03 530i '06 X5
Quote:
Originally Posted by adjeidennis View Post
i really need a reply to this my e39 was overheating so i changed the radiator the water pump and the thermostat. i was on the road for 70miles and it started to overheat again i realised something by accident i lost the bleeding screw and contiuned my journey without it i toped up water periodically and surprisingly it did not overheat.
whats the risk in taking the bleeding screw off
The system won't pressurize with the bleeder screw off, you will also lose coolant

you really need to start over.

Bleed your cooling system properly. Replace the bleed screw...take it for a drive. Does it overheat?

how does it overheat? immediately, only at warm idle? at speed?

With the system all sealed up are you losing coolant?

Did you or a previous owner ever use stop leak or similar?
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-06-2020, 05:47 AM
528iAut 528iAut is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Moraira, Spain
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 2,390
Mein Auto: 1996 528i
Its not a solution but you can monitor the temp via the cluster menu, test 7.0
https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/s...t-cluster-test
Park the car with nose tilted up a bit, loosen both bleeder screws and take radiator cap off (cool engine). Fill up with coolant.
Turn key to ignition but dont start the car, turn temp in cabin up to max, fan speed to low, leave it for a while.
You might have a pulsating action going on now, maybe bubbles come out of the bleeder screws and coolant sinks, fill it up.
When coolant does not sink anymore close both screws lightly, not too hard. Remove excess coolant so level is correct.
Take a short drive, leave car to completely cool off, check coolant and top up to level. Do this a couple of times.
If level is ok just keep an eye on the level the next couple of times you drive.
__________________
E39 528i Steptronic 1996, Comfort seats, Rear sunshade, Focal amplifier and front speakers, Oxford Green.

Last edited by 528iAut; 06-06-2020 at 05:53 AM.
Reply With Quote
Reply

See More Related BMW Stories

Tags
528i, bmw 5 series, e39, overheating


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 12:38 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
© 2001- VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.