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Fan not coming on - 2004 X3

1034 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  swampX3
Hi all,

I recently bought a used X3, and a month after buying it, the E-Tank decided to blow up. Thought I had a little more time to change it as it was top of the list, but such is life.

I happened to have an old E-Tank lying around from my E46, so I fitted it and happily started filling it with coolant. All was well (despite some splashing around of coolant, butterfingers) but while I was bleeding it and waiting for it to come up to Operating Temp, the fan made a horrible noise like it was trying to spin up but moving through a can of marbles, and then it stopped. Later I saw that it tried to start, the blades moved a little, but then nothing.

Now, the fan doesn't start when the car is started, nor does it start when I turn the A/C on max or when I use INPA to turn on the E-Lufter (I dont know if this is supposed to work for the radiator fan but I thought I'd give it a try).

I am assuming the fan motor is dead. I don't understand why, I imagine it got doused with coolant either when the tank went bust, or when I was pouring new coolant in, or whatever. I can't imagine another reason

Does anyone have any ideas about what I might try to revive this fan, or other tests I should do, before I shell out big cash for a new fan? Does anyone have any leads on where I could get a used one? I'm pretty sad that this happened so shortly after buying the car, but again, such is life.

Any advice you guys can provide would mean a lot. Thanks so much in advance. The car is a 2004 X3 3.0L Automatic.
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Check for a new fan assembly. If not there, FCPEuro.

Only tooled-up hardcore D-I-Y'ers, or those with deep pockets, should buy a used BMW IMHO. Lots of "deferred maintenance" must be done upon purchase to make them reliable again.
Thanks for your reply, BMWaufKS!

RockAuto and FCP are definitely my go-to sites for sure.

Don't let my lack of post history fool you, I am indeed a pretty hardcore DIY'er, but until now spent most of my time on e46fanatics to work on my 2004 330ci vert. I've done a lot and that was part of the reason I picked up this vehicle, as it has the same M54 as my E46.

I'm definitely interested in finding a used fan simply because it makes sense to start there first, IMO, especially since it's an electric fan rather than a clutch driven one which have a more serious shelf-life.

Deep pockets? That's a relative term :rofl: I know I like to save a couple hundred bucks given the opportunity, as long as the cost-benefit ratio plays out well.

Does anyone have any more info about what I might be able to look at in order to fix the existing fan, or where I might find a decent used one?

Also, I'm trying to understand whether I need a 400W or a 600W. My understanding is the 600 is standard on automatics, but given I live in Toronto I have been reading that a 400W may be more than sufficient. I'm still new to the E83 line and the electric fans, so any more information would be highly useful!

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