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BMW cooling system: radiator, hoses, and maintenance

Written by maryp posted on Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

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Well it’s time to do some cooling system work on my beautiful BMW 540i. My spouse saw the tell tale spot of coolant/antifreeze on our garage floor. It looks like I have a hose that has developed a small leak. Of course, I will want to take care of it right away, before it blows when I am on the freeway.

Due to the age of my BMW and the mileage, it’s time to go through the entire system. I’ll probably replace all of the hoses, expansion tank and radiator at the same time. We’ll have to check the thermostat and the water pump too. In some situations, it can save some time and money to do all of it at once. If the components are all about the same age, it’s only a matter of time before they all need preventative replacement. Why?

Take your BMW radiator cap for example. Let’s say that your cap is not holding pressure. That means that you may have a leak which leads to loss of pressure (not good) throughout the entire cooling system. When you put a new cap on, and the pressures increase to normal (which is good), any “marginal” or “weak” part in that cooling system is probably, (as in about 98%) going to show it’s weakness, and fail.

Who needs this? We’ll just get it handled now and enjoy the ride.

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