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      09-25-2012, 08:45 AM   #1
Gel214th
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328i Warning coolant level

Hey,

I just got a warning pop on the dash about low coolant level. Is this supposed to run out at this stage? My scheduled service according to the system check is another 5000Km or some time in 2013.

I thought we weren't supposed to touch the fluids etc. in the car really.

Should I just put bottled water into the coolant tank??
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      09-25-2012, 08:48 AM   #2
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This is not unusual. You should check fluids regularly. Please add distilled water to your expansion tank until it is full. Best practice is to fill it when the car is cold.

Note that if the system was very low on coolant, there may be an air bubble. Don't be surprised if the car asks you to again add coolant in a couple of days. That is not a problem.

On the e9x series cars (I haven't tried it with the f30) you follow this procedure to bleed the system:

Turn heat all the way up
Put fan on low speed
Turn ignition on, but do not start engine
Hold throttle pedal all the way down, past the kick down switch, for 15-30 seconds

When you open the coolant filler cap (again, cold engine) you should see the water circulating. This will get all the air out of the system.

You should give this procedure a try. It couldn't hurt...
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      09-25-2012, 08:57 AM   #3
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Distilled water is not bottled water?
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      09-25-2012, 11:02 AM   #4
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Not all bottled water is also distilled. Check the label. If you can't find distilled, don't sweat it. But this is a good time to add some Redline Water Wetter to help keep your engine cooler!!!
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      09-25-2012, 11:18 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mocohead View Post
Not all bottled water is also distilled. Check the label. If you can't find distilled, don't sweat it. But this is a good time to add some Redline Water Wetter to help keep your engine cooler!!!
Water Wetter mixed with coolant turns into goop. If I remember correctly, the WW bottle states: not to mix with coolant. I could be wrong, it was about 8 years ago when I last used that stuff...
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      09-25-2012, 11:41 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gel214th View Post
Distilled water is not bottled water?
Ummm no .. bottled water still as minerals in it. It just removes hard minerals (as part of the reverse osmosis process). There is still "nutritional" value in the water

Distilled water is essentially "dead water" meaning all minterals have been removed and drinking it isn't actually recommended. You won't die from it, but not good over the long term as it provides zero nutritional value. Distilled water is needed so that no desposits are left within the cooling system.
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      09-25-2012, 11:47 AM   #7
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Assuming you are just going to add a few ounces bottled water or distilled would suffice. This little amount should not have an impact to the coolant plumbing if bottled water is used.

They say 'distilled' water because distilled water is a constant anywhere in the world, has no deposits and is always the same thing and is always safe. If it just said clean water then it would be open for interpretation. Some would add river water, salt water, you name it.

Now if you were doing a complete flush and replace then, by all means, definitely use distilled for your 50/50 mix.
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      09-25-2012, 03:27 PM   #8
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I have the same problem in my F30. I've had the warning low coolant 2 times.

It seems to be a coolant sensor problem. Its a known fault at BMW, they are going to replace it on warranty
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      09-27-2012, 10:58 PM   #9
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Hey guys ive had the same problem twice already. Took it to my dealer n cheked it out n said the coolent level was fine i guess ill just keep an eye in it!
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      11-24-2012, 03:04 AM   #10
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i've been getting low coolant warnings for the last couple of days.. theres no signs of leakage.. i topped up the coolant a few times (first time it was very low).. went to bmw today, they put my VIN number in their system and then told me its a common fault with the most 3 series models.. i personally believe its the iDrive problem.. they have asked me to leave my car at the workshop overnight.. i'l update you guys as i hear from them!
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      11-25-2012, 03:25 PM   #11
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It could be a sensor problem. Check the coolant level before adding anything...

It happened to me twice, and had it checked by the dealer and they said it was a problem with the sensor. The replacement part arrived a week or so later and they changed it free of charge.

Both times the warning came up, I had the car parked outside for several hours on a hot day with no roof over which I don't usually do. Don't know for sure but that was the only thing in common both times it happened.

Last edited by karaeloko; 11-25-2012 at 03:30 PM.
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      11-30-2012, 04:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karaeloko View Post
It could be a sensor problem. Check the coolant level before adding anything...

It happened to me twice, and had it checked by the dealer and they said it was a problem with the sensor. The replacement part arrived a week or so later and they changed it free of charge.

Both times the warning came up, I had the car parked outside for several hours on a hot day with no roof over which I don't usually do. Don't know for sure but that was the only thing in common both times it happened.
its an issue with the expansion tank and sensor. I was getting low coolant errors at almost every red light. The replaced the tank and sensor and that solved the problem. Tell them they need to pull that service bulletin.
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      12-03-2012, 05:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw328jc View Post
its an issue with the expansion tank and sensor. I was getting low coolant errors at almost every red light. The replaced the tank and sensor and that solved the problem. Tell them they need to pull that service bulletin.
Thanks for this, I got the light a few times as well, coolant level has always been at max in the expansion tank. Another one for my list of glitches for the dealer

You don't happen to know what the SIB number is for this, by chance? Just in case they try to give me grief over it since I probably won't be able to reproduce it for them.
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      12-05-2012, 09:31 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by unintelligible View Post
Thanks for this, I got the light a few times as well, coolant level has always been at max in the expansion tank. Another one for my list of glitches for the dealer

You don't happen to know what the SIB number is for this, by chance? Just in case they try to give me grief over it since I probably won't be able to reproduce it for them.
I don't they didn't give it to me but come to think of it they never gave me any paperwork. I will get them to fax to me tomorrow and it if has it listed I will post it.
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      12-12-2012, 06:25 PM   #15
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I just took mine in for the low coolant warning coming on even though there was plenty of coolant in there. They fixed it per the SIB. My service advisor told me that the sensor wire was getting corroded, so they replaced the sensor and put some type of cover over it. Also, there were two other SIBs that they performed on the car. One was a software update (possibly the wiper issue in other threads), and the other was putting some rubber stops in the front headrests.

As far as using only distilled water over a 50/50 mix, that should be fine, as long as you don't live somewhere with freezing temperature, because when I took my car in initially for them to look at it, they just put distilled water in it.
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      03-17-2013, 03:46 PM   #16
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i just started getting this

had no issues prior to this. i went in once already and they just topped it off. it did go away but came on again. level is the same.
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      05-10-2013, 09:34 PM   #17
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When i got my car, (60 miles on the odo), the car was showing low coolant. Service topped it off, and i havent seen it since then. Car has 300 miles now. Any ideas on why it was low?
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      05-29-2013, 03:15 PM   #18
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I have been getting this message for a few weeks now and the reservoir is full. Looks like a trip to the dealer.
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      06-04-2013, 09:51 PM   #19
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My wife's 2012 started with this about 3 weeks ago. About 6-7 false low coolant messages. Dealer fixed today under warranty.

Invoice states:
Expansion tank: 171022
Repair cable: 611011
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      06-13-2013, 02:32 AM   #20
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I have been getting the same error, so went to get it checked and they did the programming (as they say) and resolved the issue but again the next day the light came up & goes off the next time i start my car & comes up in a few kms again. This time i have have demanded the coolant sensor replacement.

But how do i know the new sensor wont cause the problem again ?

If its a official recall, then the part will be rectified by BMW but im not sure BMW knows about this yet.

Any success stories ? Plz help

Thanks
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      08-26-2013, 02:30 PM   #21
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Last Thursday the low coolant warning light went off and I took it to the dealership to top it off. Then yesterday while stuck in traffic it went back on.

The next day, I turned the car on and the light was off. Went to the dealership anyways to see to tell them about the situation. They checked everything, pressure tested everything and check to see if it was leaking twice. NOTHING. So at the end of the day, they took some coolant out because it was overfilled back to the max line. Then said that if it happens again take it in and they will investigate it. As of right now it's off. But I have a feeling it's going to turn back on because I believe is the faulty sensor.....
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      12-09-2013, 04:30 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 7 4 7 View Post
I have been getting the same error, so went to get it checked and they did the programming (as they say) and resolved the issue but again the next day the light came up & goes off the next time i start my car & comes up in a few kms again. This time i have have demanded the coolant sensor replacement.

But how do i know the new sensor wont cause the problem again ?

If its a official recall, then the part will be rectified by BMW but im not sure BMW knows about this yet.

Any success stories ? Plz help

Thanks
Coolant level low issue is SOLVED now.

The solution which was replacing the coolant tank + sensor.

I suggested the same to my SA @ BMW Infinity (Chembur, Mumbai), he agreed & got permission to replace both the parts (coolant tank + Sensor) under warranty.

And VOILA, Problem solved

Its been over 3 month now and no coolant level error till date.
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