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-   -   E34: What will break ? (http://www.unitedbimmer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=52)

Torque 04-16-2005 01:16 PM

E34: What will break ?
Courtesy of www.bmwe34.net:

1. Self locking bolts on cam oil spray bar. Look for worn camshaft lobes from this.
2. Hood & trunk gas lifts.
3. Front suspension: tie rod ends, ball Joints, possibly struts and bearings. Thrust arm bushings.
4. Sway bar links and bushings. Rear differential mount and rear subframe bushings.
5. Fan clutch on water pump.
6. Brake rotors, pads, sensors, timing belt and tensioner (M20), brake or clutch switch.
7. Exhaust components, usually muffler. O2 sensor.
8. Heater control valve, Fan speed control whether sword or resistor pack. A/C compressor.
9. Differential speed sensor.
10. Clutch, Driveshaft ujoints center bearing guibos.
11. Radiator and hoses. Thermostat.Water pump
12. Doors restraint (the metal bar that stops the door from opening too far) is attached to the very thin metal of the door frame and is starting to fatigue and crack.
13. Gauge cluster, usually capacitors repair for 5.00in parts or purchase 750.00 rebuilt unit.
14. Steering box, excessive play on center, sometimes just an adjustment.
15. Light control module (LKM) repair or replace.
16. Seat cables modified. Arm rest repair. Door panels above armrest coming unglued.Sunroof drains plugging and sunroof seals out of aligment.
17. Wheel bearings front and rear, usually front first. Sealed unit you must buy the entire hub. Cv boots on rear axles.
18. Oil canister (oil filter housing) valve is failing. This is BMW mistake. Canister needs to be changed (M30 engine only).
19. Fuel pump relay and main relay.
20. Glove box latch.
21. Excessive play in shifter handle on automatic. Adjustment.
22. Automatic transmission depending on maintenance.
23. Timing chain tensioner.
24. Fuel pump.
25. Occasionaly an oil pump. Not that common.
26. Occasionaly a headgasket. Common on M30 engine with the coolant that had not been changed every 2 years.
27. After 400k miles, you should change your engine :-)

528man 04-16-2005 10:59 PM

great find

munichman 04-18-2005 09:51 PM

and nikasil V8s...

cainchapman 05-10-2005 04:01 AM

Nikasil is only a problem for you guys in the US. We never had a problem with our Nikasil blocks due to our fuel! Nothing wrong with my M60 ;)

4themasses 05-14-2005 03:51 PM

Is that all......for a minute I was worried....

sp0rk 05-17-2005 03:26 AM

Let me see what I have done on that list...
Wait a minute... Let me see what I haven't done on that list... lol


sp0rk 05-17-2005 03:28 AM


kiwi535 05-20-2005 05:21 AM

That look's awfully familiar....E34.net????Hell a lot of that stuff will go wrong on ANY car....

ooops my bad,I just noticed the aknowledgement :doh

euro driver e34 05-01-2006 08:57 AM

It seems like the U.s. models have all of these engine and suspension problems? Unlike my car which seems to have minor interior electrical problems. But the hinges on the glove boxes are junk it drives me nuts!:angry

Storamin 05-01-2006 11:31 AM

no stock bmw suspension is good. replace immediately.

dinan540 05-01-2006 02:42 PM


Remo 03-23-2011 04:34 AM

A GREAT article
I happened onto this article just searching the net. Very interesting info, especially about the water pump and why it should be replaced. Seems he runs a repair shop.

The BMW M50 engine series is a very durable powerplant. The frequency of actual failure is very low considering the number of these cars that we service. Even with repeated bouts of overheating, they seem to survive well. The least common cooling system failure is the head gasket, or at least leakage in the head-to-block interface. In this article, Iíll cover the diagnosis, repair and prevention of these failures, but it will be up to you to convince your customers that regular maintenance and inspection is the only way to prevent expensive failures.

The events leading up to a head gasket failure can almost be plotted on a graph of typical events. The customer complains of overheating, but the coolant level doesnít drop. The fan, belt and hoses all appear OK, and thermostat function tests fine with a non-contact temp probe. The engine temperature spikes at times, but then is normal. The engine does or doesnít overheat at idle, but the temperature climbs quickly at higher engine speeds.

On most M50 engines, the water pump impeller installed at the factory is plastic. For whatever reason, the impeller separates from the shaft or disintegrates and the water pump no longer pumps. In the first case, with the impeller loose, especially with the engine at operating temperature, diagnosis can be especially difficult. Just when you think there is no flow, some coolant starts to move and everything tests OK, temporarily.

Another problem along this same line is that the auxiliary coolant pump for the heater system can circulate enough coolant to provide cooling at idle, but not at higher engine speeds.

Then the problem increases in frequency and intensity, coolant is lost, a leak starts at the plastic thermostat housing or, in a worst case scenario, the upper radiator hose blows off, due to failure of the plastic outlet neck (sometimes caused by over-tightening). Then, a series of overheating events culminate with a severe loss of coolant, a misfire and a customer with a very red face.

At this point you canít pressure-test the system, a block test may or may not have been conclusive and there are still the questions about the water pump, fan clutch, auxiliary fan and switch and a stuck thermostat. Itís usually only after all of these other possible overheat sources are eliminated that a head gasket failure is suspected or indicated.

So now I know why it was overheating. This guy just saved me some bucks.

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