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BMW 5er E60 520i -Water egress doth continue.


Split_Pin

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@Split_Pin, if you want to feel any better, my friend bought a 2016 Mazda CX-5 and it's just failed the MOT on a barely  flickering LED headlight. Cost to fix the headlight is £1200...

I had a look to see if there were cheaper options and he's fucked. Can't repair it yourself, can't replace the unit without Mazda specialist equipment to recalibrate and there's a 320 page thread about the issue on the Mazda owner's forum. Looks like the previous owner missed the deadline for the warrantied recall. 

Great to see cheap and simple fixes like the ones you're doing. 

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3 minutes ago, sdkrc said:

£1200

Holy Mary Mother of God 😳

With a 2016 car your still financially committed and, no disrespect to Mazda cars, but you still only have a very ordinary car at the end of it.

So yeah, I do feel better now!

Coolant tank is supposed to be delivered today. Hopefully that:

a) The above is true

b) It's the correct tank

c) The rain stays off long enough for me to fit it

I'm looking forward to driving it again as it is a nice way to travel.

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  • Split_Pin changed the title to BMW 5er E60 520i New Coolant Reservoir

After work I fitted the new coolant tank, went in no bother.

20240605_163721.jpg.eed5d618679336f1e5474393ec38279d.jpg

Pumper spray was to wash up any spillage.

Old one was leaking quite badly from inside the sensor hole:

20240605_164815.jpg.e639c56aeccadcce58453970ec77ae81.jpg

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I wonder why this era of bmw have service item level of cooling system components, say compared to mercs of the era where its a thermostat and thats it. 

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On 05/06/2024 at 10:20, sdkrc said:

@Split_Pin, if you want to feel any better, my friend bought a 2016 Mazda CX-5 and it's just failed the MOT on a barely  flickering LED headlight. Cost to fix the headlight is £1200...

I had a look to see if there were cheaper options and he's fucked. Can't repair it yourself, can't replace the unit without Mazda specialist equipment to recalibrate and there's a 320 page thread about the issue on the Mazda owner's forum. Looks like the previous owner missed the deadline for the warrantied recall. 

Great to see cheap and simple fixes like the ones you're doing. 

This happened on my bosses 3 series a few days before it's warranty ran out.  It was £1400  and he somehow got it booked into BMW using bribery or blackmail and had it replaced the day before the warranty ran out. 

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I think a lamp for one of these would be about £40 or £50 from a breaker thank goodness! 

I know that the ellipsoid lamps on my old Audi 80 Cabriolet are about £400-£500 each to replace although there are cheaper alternatives.

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14 minutes ago, Split_Pin said:

I think a lamp for one of these would be about £40 or £50 from a breaker thank goodness! 

I know that the ellipsoid lamps on my old Audi 80 Cabriolet are about £400-£500 each to replace although there are cheaper alternatives.

My e90 had xenon’s and they’re pricey . The dlrs had disintegrated on mine so I bought a broken one and kind of cobbled the two together for about 100 quid as it was a n mot fail  . A normal headlamp was 30-40 quid as you say .

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Took it for a test drive, runs fine now.

However I think I broke the coolant level sensor as I'm getting a low coolant warning even although the reservoir is definitely full.

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Should be the same as my e46.. As in replace every year or 2..
(That's when it wasn't overheating every other trip)

Pretty sure I've had a faulty sensor, or not jammed it in right / not connected the cable before.
These tend to get airlocks really easily - this would trigger the light as BMW's overcomplicated cooling system just sucks the tank dry when the pump starts pumping...

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I have ordered a new sensor. 

Hopefully it's not the magnet in the new tank float that's faulty. I don't mind lights on the task as such, but it's a bit annoying that a light that wasn't there before, now is, and it's directly related to the thing I know I have fixed properly.

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If it is the tank I’d be inclined to short the wires together using the connector from the old tank to get rid of the bong.

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9 minutes ago, JakeT said:

If it is the tank I’d be inclined to short the wires together using the connector from the old tank to get rid of the bong.

Yeah I was thinking how I'd do that. So just use the old sensor and bridge the 2 long reeds?

Either that or a paperclip/bit wire across the terminals of the plug?

I don't really need the level sensor as I check the coolant t on all my cars weekly anyway.

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Either of those will work. If the circuit is open it will put the light on. Hopefully a new sensor sorts it though.

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Put a magnetic screwdriver or similar against the sensor and see if it stops the alert. 

Or put the sensor into the old tank and hold the tank upside down.  

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  • Split_Pin changed the title to BMW 5er E60 520i -Water egress doth continue.

I put a tray under this to catch the oil drips last night as I have moved it onto my drive to let the Saab have the layby in lieu of its impending collection on Thursday.

Great to see I have fixed* the coolant leak. The picture doesn't show it but apart from the bit in the middle, the rest is all blue coolant. I've been on a long run too so any residual spillage from the undertray will be long gone.

20240611_083321.jpg.54a23c978b52edcfcd88f9af6d55e105.jpg

FUCK. OFF.

The cooling system in these is quite simple:

dtzh.png.2a6e1dac21c66c5dee39d9d503bd99d0.png

..but even seeing some of those pipes to check for leaks involves removal of the inlet manifold. Between dealing with my dad's estate and battling the A8 with a similar issue of coolant loss, I do not have the headspace for this at the moment.

I think maybe old BMWs are not for me.

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I fuggin' hate dealing with cooling systems. Whether modern or classics. 

Not only that a leak can go from nothing to massive in a short space of time without even realising. When you do, the coolant gauge is rapidly increasing to hot but no other indication apart from that. Of course these BMWs (at least my 330i and I think this is similar) doesn't even have a coolant gauge on the dash. 

At least yours is traditional and straightforward. My 330i has an electric water pump. A fully electric system with no mechanical pump. Basically if you get the warning of failure on, you pull over and stop the engine then await recovery. Pump naturally isn't cheap nor accessible because BMW. It's basically on the side of the engine in the middle - where a mechanical pump would/could have resided 🙃

For yours, the easiest solution I'd probably do is put some UV dye on. Hopefully the leak should be clear then. Not that expensive for a kit (iirc £15 or something like that). Pressure tester and vacuum fill kits would also do it and quickly found the leak on my Golf GTI. Just quite expensive. Would have helped filling your A8 system too. Need a compressor for it though (my tiddly Lidl unit did the job though).

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1 hour ago, Split_Pin said:

Between dealing with my dad's estate and battling the A8 with a similar issue of coolant loss, I do not have the headspace for this at the moment.

I think maybe old BMWs are not for me.

Honestly I think the problem is that you have replaced too many cars too soon (which I'm often guilty of). As someone on here said (I forget who), cars have a funny habit of breaking suddenly once in a new owner hands. So you end up debugging issues in the first few weeks/months of ownership until they become solid stablemates.

If they don't...

mcm-mighty-car-mods.gif

imo.

It's a primary reason why I am intending to stick with my 330i/Z4 combo for a while longer despite the urge for other stuff. Not just because I like them but also anything else to replace it can be troublesome and I have other priorities in life that take my time up. So the limited spare time I have for cars, I don't really want to be fixing my moderns when, I need to get on with and I'd get more enjoyment getting on with my classics. 

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Aye, I guess it was meant to be a diversion away from other shit stuff that's going on at the moment but it has indeed backfired.

Either way the Saab could not continue with the £59 per month Tax.

1 hour ago, SiC said:

Honestly I think the problem is that you have replaced too many cars too soon

I think you've nailed it there.

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18 minutes ago, Split_Pin said:

Aye, I guess it was meant to be a diversion away from other shit stuff that's going on at the moment but it has indeed backfired.

Again I totally get that. My mental health/state is not something I talk on here (or really anywhere tbh) but it can reasonably gauged by my impulse purchases and vehicular movements.

Hits those dopamine receptors good. Then the inevitable come down.

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Have you got any big bits of cardboard you can drive onto? I've used this to find coolant leaks in the past as it tends to drip onto the cardboard in the general location of the leak and leave a stain. 

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19 minutes ago, cort16 said:

Have you got any big bits of cardboard you can drive onto? I've used this to find coolant leaks in the past as it tends to drip onto the cardboard in the general location of the leak and leave a stain. 

The undertray is unfortunately masking the true location of the leak.

I had a good look with an extendable torch in-between calls but everything looked OK. All the coolant pipes around the front are dry and look undisturbed.

Who knows.

I'm going to ask my mum if I can store it in her garage as she never goes in there and just forget about it for a bit.

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At least garages won't go running away if you chuck this at them. Pretty sure most garages have repaired as many Bangle BMWs as Focus/Astras. Not just because they break just/more often but BMW made a fuck tonne of them. 

Can't imagine this would be that hard for a garage to find on a ramp with the covers off looking up on a lift. 

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They're fine with my 75 which is less common and arguably mode fiddly so that's good.

But I've learned never to give any of my cars to a garage round here with an undiagnosed problem as it'll just sit there for months. I'd rather identify the issue, get the part and go to them with that in hand together absolute 100% clear instructions on what to fix. I seem to get on fine that way.

I still can't believe though, that me, an absolute driveway amateur at best, is more confident about fixing an A8 than a well established garage. That kind of explains my point a bit 😅

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3 hours ago, Split_Pin said:

The undertray is unfortunately masking the true location of the leak.

I had a good look with an extendable torch in-between calls but everything looked OK. All the coolant pipes around the front are dry and look undisturbed.

Who knows.

I'm going to ask my mum if I can store it in her garage as she never goes in there and just forget about it for a bit.

Ah yes, big and heavy specifically design to hold back torrents of coolant and oil. I somehow managed to remove all of my under trays while it was on axle stands when trying to find an oil leak.  It wasn't fun I wouldn't recommend. 

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Before you roffle it or set it on fire for leaking - did you tripple-check the thermostat housing? Google search for “M54 thermostat housing leak” is returning tons of results, and I vaguely recall that BMW botherers around me mentioned it more than once, combined with assorted cursewords.

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If you're at the stage of offloading it at a massive loss, would it not be worth chucking in a bottle of Steel Seal or similar accepting it'll be an end of life bodge?

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