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Learning all the time
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Understood :)
Maybe even a piece of a metal coat hanger (or two) with the ends bent up could get it out. Although I spent about half an hour getting mine out I considered myself lucky at the time :)
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Maybe even a piece of a metal coat hanger (or two) with the ends bent up could get it out
As cn90 said, the broken pieces are not likely to go anywhere.

This is what the core looks like.
- BMW E39 failed radiator & failed expansion tank pictorial autopsy

The broken radiator pieces, if they float, won't fit into those teeny tiny slits.


The pieces that don't float will simply sink down to the bottom where the drain plug lies.



I guess, if there were enough of a vortex current, the pieces could eventually float to the top and be sucked out the upper radiator hose.

That would not be a good thing for the water pump, I would think; nor for the thermostat; or for any of those small bleed passageways.

But, I found a way today to remove the broken pieces without worry. See the next post as I'm going outside for the light to take a good picture (light is everything).
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Explanation of the 10mm/9mm socket trick to push out the nipple intact

This is what the nipple looks like when in place.

Notice that the two alignment tabs are missing here (I broke them off trying to remove the nipple by a different method). I think those tabs do nothing other than to prevent the nipple from going into the radiator the wrong way (notice the corresponding alignment slots in the nipple).



According to the original reference and to my initial observations, a 10mm socket seems to fit the nipple best.


This is what the nipple looks like from the inside.


The problem is that very little of the nipple actually protrudes into the radiator itself ... so there is precious little purchase for the 10mm socket to grab.


So, I found that a 9mm socket is a better match for pushing the radiator nipple out from the inside without breaking the nipple.


Here, you see, that the 9mm socket does work to compress the tabs of the nipple so that the nipple can be pushed out of the radiator, intact.


The problem, of course, will be that you don't want to lose the 9mm socket so here is what you'd likely do.


The stated technique of removing the radiator nipple intact is interesting, but, I think it may be problematic for large hands to do all of this from the radiator hose opening.

Time will tell. I hope the next person who sees this who needs to remove his radiator nipple intact can try it out for us and let us know how it works or how to improve upon the procedure.
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Discussion Starter · #25 ·

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
If I correctly read this thread posted today, the OP broke the radiator nipple and was successful in making a temporary expoxy repair until new parts arrived:
- E39 (1997 - 2003) > Notes from my cooling system overhaul

2. When removing the fan shroud be very careful to pry upward, not forward. When I removed mine I pried it forward and it broke the vent spout on the top right hand side of the radiator. This was an issue because I initially was changing out the water pump and the belts. So I was forced to epoxy it back together until the radiator and hoses arrived. This is a very temporary fix as it could not gain a total seal and the antifreeze degrades the epoxy over time. It lasted two weeks, just long enough to get the radiatior and hoses in.
 

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SpecE30 #59
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- Another lesson I learned, the hard way, is that simply pressing out on the two tabs locking the nipple in place breaks off these two tabs quite easily. The problem with that is that these tabs are part of the radiator, not part of the nipple. So, once you break these two tabs, you're ruined the radiator.
The O-ring on my 3-year-old nipple failed (Behr radiator with a test date of 3/6/2010).

Desipite using two jeweler's screwdrivers to open the tabs and lifting the nipple with a third, the two alignment tabs broke.

Since the tabs don't serve to retain the nipple, only keep it straight, is the radiator really ruined, or is it still safe to run?

(I tried the 9mm socket trick, but couldn't reach the prongs, possibly because 2 were broken when I did get the nipple out.)
 

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Don't worry about those radiator tabs.

Once the nipple is in, the nipple's tabs (inside the rad) will keep the nipple in place.
Plus, when the Fan Shroud is down and the rivet (plastic clip) is attached, the Fan Shroud keeps the nipple downward and it has no chance of coming out.

Just grease the O-ring a tiny bit to slide it in.

This is a photo from my car (taken from another DIY) to show you the rivet on the Fan Shroud:

 

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How to remove rad nipple in one piece :dunno::mad:

Hi,
Interesting problem...here's what I make of the "10 mm socket" solution;
1. Remove upper rad hose.
2. Get a 10 mm socket and tie a string through it so you don't drop the socket inside the rad. Tie the other end of the string to something big.
3. Somehow, you need to manouver the socket inside the hole where the upper rad hose used to be. You want to fit the socket over the 3 "fingers" of the nipple so that when you apply upwards pressure on the socket (toward the nipple), the 3 "fingers" get squeezed in and the entire nipple should just pop right out!
4. Do the happy dance.

:banana:

NOTE: Looking at your new spare rad nipple, it's obvious that the nipple was meant to stay put unless those 3 "fingers" are somehow compressed, and that is where the 10 mm socket comes in. Practice this with your new spare rad nipple before you attempt it on the actual rad.
 

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How to remove rad nipple in one piece

:dunno::mad:

Hi,
Interesting problem...here's what I make of the "10 mm socket" solution;
1. Remove upper rad hose.
2. Get a 10 mm socket and tie a string through it so you don't drop the socket inside the rad. Tie the other end of the string to something big.
3. Somehow, you need to manouver the socket inside the hole where the upper rad hose used to be. You want to fit the socket over the 3 "fingers" of the nipple so that when you apply upwards pressure on the socket (toward the nipple), the 3 "fingers" get squeezed in and the entire nipple should just pop right out!
4. Do the happy dance.

:banana::banana:

NOTE: Looking at your new spare rad nipple, it's obvious that the nipple was meant to stay put unless those 3 "fingers" are somehow compressed, and that is where the 10 mm socket comes in. Practice this with your new spare rad nipple before you attempt it on the actual rad.
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
it's obvious that the nipple was meant to stay put unless those 3 "fingers" are somehow compressed,
I received this PM today, which shows even a broken nipple will seal (perhaps due to the o-ring in the midline of the nipple):

...whilst removing the radiator shroud, having seen your extensive documentation about the radiator nipple, I very carefully eased it out of the hole with two small screwdrivers - I'm sure it offered almost no resistance and came straight up. When it was out, however, I found that two of the three legs had been broken off. I know someone else had worked here previously, in fact, the radiator was not completely seated and didn't have the rivet on one side.
My question is: Is it possible for the cooling system to have operated with the nipple having only one leg? Does it seat well enough with the o-ring? Or would pressure in the system surely have popped it out, thus being evidence that I broke it?

 

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I just replace mine yesterday.
Those 2 tabs are just guide for the nipple in right position and it doesn't hold it. So I guess, even we brake those 2 tabs, it is ok.

And I didn't even clear those 2 tabs when I remove the nipple. just left it up with 2 screw drivers and it pop up and came out one piece.

Anyway, thank you for those who put picture as DIY and it helps me a lot.

The O-ring on my 3-year-old nipple failed (Behr radiator with a test date of 3/6/2010).

Desipite using two jeweler's screwdrivers to open the tabs and lifting the nipple with a third, the two alignment tabs broke.

Since the tabs don't serve to retain the nipple, only keep it straight, is the radiator really ruined, or is it still safe to run?

(I tried the 9mm socket trick, but couldn't reach the prongs, possibly because 2 were broken when I did get the nipple out.)
 

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while replacing radiator, the nipple came off as if it was just there. no effort realized that it was actually broken. since the coolant was already out a little pry up top and a second pry with a small screwdriver on the radiator drain location caused broken tab to fall out. I was replacing radiator any ways so didn't matter, but the 9mm socket trick is ingenious.
 

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Ball Don't lie
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I dremeled the top off then I took a screw driver and punched it into the tank then it fell out the drain pipe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
I dremeled the top off then I took a screw driver and punched it into the tank then it fell out the drain pipe.
That works! :)

But, the goal is figuring out how to remove the nipple without destroying it.
 

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Ball Don't lie
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Why not just replace it? It was like $10 for it.
 

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Seek to understand,^Value
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Discussion Starter · #38 · (Edited)
Why not just replace it? It was like $10 for it.
You're missing the whole point. Re-read the first post for the reasons.

Anyway, today this similar thread came up, and it was nice to see that the advice here and elsewhere helped....
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > vent house fitting elbow removal

does this piece snap out of place or is there a trick to get it out.

http://www.eaceuroparts.com/parts/part_number/17 11 0 419 132
thanks! another successful diy
 

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I had to perform this job last week due to a compressed o-ring that was allowing a leak. Thanks to the forum it was easy, just place a screw driver or small pry bar under the horizontal portion of the nipple and pry upward. It popped right out, thankfully intact and changing the new one was simple.
 

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you got lucky

my bmw indy replaced it, old one came out but one of the legs remained. I doubt it will harm anything as it it too large to clog the radiator passages.
 
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