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Discussion Starter #1
So I went to do a little maintenance, more for fun than anything -- flushing out the cooling system and replacing the hoses and belts while I was at it.

I ordered new hoses and clamps from Pelican Parts, but I made the mistake of not buying the OEM BMW hoses, and instead went with one of their aftermarket brands. Pelican really does not sell junk, so I figured on something like a rubber hose I was all good.

No, I was not all good -- the hoses weren't exactly the same size (they were too short, and yes I ordered the right ones). The old hoses weren't in bad shape, so after draining the coolant I put the old ones back on, along with the old BMW clamps (they were only about 30k old).

Fill up the cooling system and go for a drive, bleed it, go for a drive, come back and coolant is dripping all over my garage. Everything was still wet from the flush so I figured I'd check it in the morning.

The morning comes, the expansion tank is empty. I fill it up, go for another drive, and come back and check. I find coolant dripping from the passenger side, but I can't tell where from. I finally figure out the coolant is leaking out the thermostat housing where it joins with the lower radiator hose. I readjust the hose slightly and tighten the clamp up even tighter and go for another test drive. I come back, still leaking.

I jacked up the car and realize it's leaking from other end of the same hose (lower radiator hose). I readjusted and retightened that clamp, which has seemed to take care of the leak. I ordered a brand new BMW Brand hose and two new BMW hose clamps which I'm going to put on asap.

Anyways, what I'm saying is that once you pull the old hoses off, they will have impressions from the threads on the thermostat housing, and the uneven surface of the inner portion of those will not seal very well when reinstalled. I learned this the hard way.
 

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BMWCCA HPDE Instructor
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23,452 Posts
Hoses I could see the need for getting OEM, but as for the steel hose clamps, I really don't see the need to use OEM. I've used regular threaded steel hose clamps bought from parts stores on my cars for 15 years without any problems. And the small crimp-on clamp that is used on the small diameter overflow tube should definitely be replaced with a threaded one for ease of service.
 

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some kid
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I find it weird that Pelican would stock hoses that weren't the correct size. You might have ordered the right ones, but are you sure that they sent the right ones? I would check the part numbers.
 

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BMWCCA HPDE Instructor
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23,452 Posts
Yeah, I wouldn't think that Pelican of all places would sell something that didn't fit as well as OEM. They're an excellent company. Weird.
 

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I feed trolls
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Just email them, theyll take em back. Learned this when i got a valve cover gasket from them and it didnt fit. Great company; took it back without question
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes I tripled checked, they are identical parts and part numbers, except the Pelican one is just a a milimeter or two shorter, and it made a world of difference when trying to get the end to sit flush against the thermostat housing.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hoses I could see the need for getting OEM, but as for the steel hose clamps, I really don't see the need to use OEM. I've used regular threaded steel hose clamps bought from parts stores on my cars for 15 years without any problems. And the small crimp-on clamp that is used on the small diameter overflow tube should definitely be replaced with a threaded one for ease of service.
As long as you use a quality clamp, you are fine. Good quality clamps have a rounded off edge so they don't dig into the hose. I was consulting with the VP of the BMWCCA for this region, who is extremely knowledgable, and the first thing he inquired about were what clamps I used. He said he's had bad experiences using cheap clamps.
 
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