Ashley1995

Back in an E46 - Cooling problem?

5 posts in this topic

Hi all, after a few years, I have another E46. This time a facelift, 330ci Vert in Silver Grey. Pretty much rust free too!
I’ve still got my M140i, this is just a bit of a daily, I fancied a vert for the summer
 
I got a good amount of money off, and have since fitted new front discs and pads. Cleaned up the interior, boot space and rear lights plus got new badges on order. Needs a good exterior detail but I’ll do that soon.
 
It needs a service, so I’ll do this, but it has one issue.
 
It seems to be losing coolant, I’ve been topping it up, but today, it was steaming from around the tank and rad area. There seems to also be some oil leakage from the front centre of the engine too.
Interestingly the temp needle almost never moves from centre, even when cold it’s in the centre within a minute of driving which seems odd.
 
Now, I’m worried this is sounding like head gasket, but what are people’s thoughts. I don’t believe the water pump has ever been changed but, that shouldn’t cause it to be getting to hot right?
 
Thanks

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2clubsp   
12 hours ago, Ashley1995 said:

Hi all, after a few years, I have another E46. This time a facelift, 330ci Vert in Silver Grey. Pretty much rust free too!
I’ve still got my M140i, this is just a bit of a daily, I fancied a vert for the summer
 
I got a good amount of money off, and have since fitted new front discs and pads. Cleaned up the interior, boot space and rear lights plus got new badges on order. Needs a good exterior detail but I’ll do that soon.
 
It needs a service, so I’ll do this, but it has one issue.
 
It seems to be losing coolant, I’ve been topping it up, but today, it was steaming from around the tank and rad area. There seems to also be some oil leakage from the front centre of the engine too.
Interestingly the temp needle almost never moves from centre, even when cold it’s in the centre within a minute of driving which seems odd.
 
Now, I’m worried this is sounding like head gasket, but what are people’s thoughts. I don’t believe the water pump has ever been changed but, that shouldn’t cause it to be getting to hot right?
 
Thanks

Sounds like you got a leaky coolant expansion tank. Do a coolant pressure test to be sure. The safe option is to do the usual e46 coolant system overhaul. Doesn't sound like a head gasket.

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rma   

The coolant in my 330ci sits at around 92-95 degrees under normal operation which is enough to make it steam.

 

Do a pressure test, and if that comes back normal it could be the expansion tank cap that's leaky. Mine was too causing it to condense and run down the tank.

 

Oil leak could be oil filter housing gasket, when you take the airbox off and look at the block in the area with recessed sections of metal you will see oil sitting in there like the image below:

 

image.png.5e57dadefa51d862fc73ae86a6fc7003.png

 

 

Edited by rma
Added image for clarification

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PoohBore   

I’ve recently done the coolant system iverhaul and the oil filter housing seal replacement. The 50skid videos on you tube helped a lot. Have you checked the radiator? Mine was sagging badly but could only be seen from underneath the car


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Hi all, thanks for the ideas. 

I replaced the rad, pump and the expansion tank. it was leaking from the pump so this was causing the issues. 

The oil leak seemed to be the rocker cover gasket so this is on the list to replace now too, I also changed the oil and filter. 

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