Can the heat exchanger have a coolant leak? - BMW M5 Forum and M6 Forums

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Old 4th August 2010, 01:32   #1
M5LAY
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Can the heat exchanger have a coolant leak?

I have my M5 at a shop right now because it was over heating this weekend. They are saying that it is leaking at the heat exchanger and need to order a new one. Well that part is over $500 dollars and wanted to check with the experts here if anyone has had this happen. My car has 166K miles to btw.
thanks ahead anyone.
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Old 4th August 2010, 03:23   #2
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Extremely unusual, at best.

I would want to see it to believe it. Using a coolant system tester, have them pressurize it to 30 PSI and
show you where the leakage is. This oil-coolant heat exchanger is quite robust and extremely well made.
More likely, the potential sources of leakage are the transfer tubes (o-rings) between the heat exchanger
and thermostat housing. There are other seals as well that may be the source, in particular, those between
the exchanger and the mating flange on the block.

I would definitely not be shelling out the cost for a new exchanger without them first demonstrating to
you the leakage with the system pressurized (per above, 30 PSI).

Regards,
Alan
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Old 4th August 2010, 03:41   #3
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aggred with the post above also there are two little hoses under the intake plenum on both sides of the inner v bank i would pull the pluenum and pressue test the cooling system
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Old 4th August 2010, 04:33   #4
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Also check the coolant jacket.
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Old 4th August 2010, 14:22   #5
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I had them pressurize it yesterday and it is leaking but it is hard to see exactly where its leaking from behind that heat exchanger. I also will have them check those two small hoses that everyone say break over time. I just find it odd that a lot of people haven't had the the heat exchanger go bad on them. Thanks again for the responses. I will try to keep yall updated.
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Old 5th August 2010, 22:20   #6
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So I get a call from the shop today and they say that part is not available in all off the USA and Canada and is not back order from Germany. Does anyone know if there is an aftermarket option for the heat exchanger 11 441 406 695? Or else I will have to wait three weeks.
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Old 6th August 2010, 06:36   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M5LAY View Post
So I get a call from the shop today and they say that part is not available in all off the USA and Canada and is not back order from Germany. Does anyone know if there is an aftermarket option for the heat exchanger 11 441 406 695? Or else I will have to wait three weeks.
Yes, there is an alternative. You can delete the heat exchanger altogether with a kit from Dinan and replace it with an external oil cooler. Check out the "oil cooler potential group buy" thread, which toward the end has the part numbers for the Dinan kit and the "Gulf" oil filter housing that has outs for an external oil cooler. You will also need the oil cooler itself and hoses and connectors. The Dinan kit, the oil filter housing, oil cooler and hoses altogether will run you around $1500, so if you are cost-averse, don't go this route.

--Peter
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Old 6th August 2010, 17:18   #8
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Wow that does sound like a great alternative but unfortunately for me cost is an option right now. Thanks again for the advice but I got a few weeks to think about it. I will check it out though.
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Old 6th August 2010, 18:59   #9
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I would pull out the heat exchanger and ensure that is actually the culprit (i.e. corroded connection, etc) in the leak. It does not sound like there is certainty on that part (and this will be the first I can recall hearing about on the board). Pull it out and take it to a good radiator shop to be tested (and possibly repaired if it is a minor issue?). To me this sounds like a mechanic who is not certain that is the leaking part, knows that it will be some major labor to pull it all apart and might just be playing it safe (not to mention the extra dough to be made selling that part).

If you're going to pay the labor to pull it out anyway, yank it now, carefully to ensure it is not damaged in the process, check out the exchanger and have it evaluated properly...just 2 cents worth of blather on my part.
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Old 6th August 2010, 19:11   #10
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Very good point CSBM5! Will do that today.
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