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E36 General discussion and technical help for (E36) 1992-1999 3 series cars. 318, 323, 325, 328.

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Old 05-14-2006, 01:22 PM   #1
speedmatters

Name: speedmatters
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Your Ride: 1993 318is ....yes I know, it's not fast!
1993 318is coolant loss...HELP!

So i'm driving along the motorway at 80 yesterday when I noticed that the heater was not giving me any hot air, I looked at the temp gauge and all was normal. Then about 20 mins later the gauge began to slowly rise to 2/3rds then when I eased back to 70 it dropped to normal. I sped back up thinking that It was an air lock, (this happened once before 6 months previous when I was sitting with the engine at tick over, I turned the engine off & let it cool & it was fine 30 mins later) next thing I know the needle's in the red and there's steam pouring from the exhaust and engine bay. Oh Joy.

I have coolant pissing from the front middle/lower left side of the block pouring directly onto the powersteering tubes/rack (when I rev the engine the flow increases slightly) Also my head gasket has taken a caining and is ejecting a high-pressure jet of smoke from the middle top right side of the block. I suspected that the worse had happened and that the engine would be totalled...if only i'd seen it 60 secs earlier!

Question being....the smoke from the exhaust was pure white, so that's just water (yes?!) so hopefully no piston ring damage. After the car cooled I put 1/2 litre of water in (that's all it had lost) and it drove normally ...albeit for 5 miles until the temp started to rise again.....

do you reckon this is a waterpump failure or a timing case profile gasket issue? It's already cost me £200 to get it home and i only replaced the manifold + tyres last week when it was MOT'd!

At the moment she still drives (not that I will drive 'till it's sorted) do you reckon a tub of K-seal and a new water pump would do the trick?

I hope someone can point me in the right direction. Cheers guys
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Old 05-14-2006, 01:26 PM   #2
c1apton
 
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I think you "cooked" a head gasket. I'd pull the head, have it checked so it's not cracked or warped and replace the head gasket, thermostat, waterpump. (for starters)
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Old 05-14-2006, 03:29 PM   #3
94bmw325i
 
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If it's white smoke then it should be coolant thats leaked into your head gasket I think.
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:11 AM   #4
speedmatters

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thanks c1apton & 94bmw325i, I hope that a bottle of K-Seal will cure the gasket, if not then this will be an expensive week! The annoying thing is that when it was MOT'd last week, it was failed on a leaking power steering pump....which was BS because I know my car & there was no PS leak. When I complained the garage just issued me with a pass certificate and told me to fix it! It was actually a small amount of green coolant leaking from the block onto the Power Steering pump...if only they'd spotted this instead of assuming the obvious...the fact that my coolant was bright green and the PS fluid was red didn't seem to bother them!

I will replace the water pump (even if it's ok) and the thermostat, and see what happens with the K-Seal. Apparently it can be used to 'permanently' plug holes under 1mm. Fingers crossed. Cheers
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Old 05-15-2006, 06:19 AM   #5
c1apton
 
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Good luck...
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Old 05-15-2006, 09:46 AM   #6
speedmatters

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does anyone know where the coolant drain plug on the block is on this car?!!!
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Old 05-15-2006, 02:28 PM   #7
speedmatters

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Your Ride: 1993 318is ....yes I know, it's not fast!
found the drain plug at last...then sheared 2 bolts on the thermostat housing, and I can't get the pump out for love nor money!!! 5 hours later I have a car in bits and i'm missing all the bits i need like new gaskets and 2 bolts to remove the pump. It's at times like this that I wish I'd just paid to have it done 'properly'!!
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