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    Heater core burst?

    I was running some errands today, had the AC on, and started to get a whiff of coolant. A few minutes later I see steam and a gurgling sound from my AC vents. I turn the AC off, open the windows, and the engine temp starts to go above center position when I’m stopped - never got to red. The steam comes pretty regularly as I drive, got a little scary when I had to stop but improved when driving.

    I get home and find coolant in my footwell, a fair amount of it. It’s also dripping to the ground under the left front frame rail.

    The other thing, there is a decent amount of oil on the ground under the back of the engine, dripping from the subframe mostly. Would a hot engine cause a rear main to leak more? Can they fail catastrophically? I have always had weep from there, just never more than a couple drops after a drive.

    Any DIY suggestions y’all can point me to?

    Any advice appreciated. I know this is going to suck.......
    My son has the 1987 325e, 2 door, 5speed
    I daily the 1989 325i, 4 door, 5speed

    #2
    Sounds like a leaking Heater core and/or valve.
    "I'd probably take the E30 M3 in this case just because I love that little car, and how tanky that inline 6 is." - thecj

    85 323i M TECH 1 S52 - ALPINEWEISS/SCHWARZE
    88 M3 - LACHSSILBER/SCHWARZE
    89 M3 - ALPINEWEISS II/M TECH CLOTH-ALCANTARA
    91 M TECHNIC CABRIO TURBO - MACAOBLAU/M TECH CLOTH-LEATHER

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      #3
      Thanks reel, yes it does. Either way I will have to dig in there. My engine ran with no coolant in the expansion tank for a few minutes, I’m not sure just how low it was. The large oil spot in my driveway has me a bit more concerned. When I got home I left it idling and popped the hood, steam/smoke was rising from the exhaust side and I did my best to see what was happening with no luck. Probably idled for two minutes. I will take a pic of the oil droppings tomorrow (gotta cook dinner).

      Good news is, I have a 2.7 block and crank ready to go if I need to pull the engine. What sucks is, this triggered (maybe) a much larger project. Currently my e39 is in the garage getting new brakes, suspension/ball joints/bushings (which is no small feat). When that’s done, well, we will see. I’ve never pulled an engine or a dash. The e46 is my lone backup now but its solid. I have done everything to that car that would likely need attention. It will need brakes if my other two cars are out too long, the e39 should be good to go pretty soon though.
      My son has the 1987 325e, 2 door, 5speed
      I daily the 1989 325i, 4 door, 5speed

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        #4
        Motors probably ok, header core slips out driver side. Just probably coolant making currant oil leak look bigger.


        I was up above it, Now I'm down in it ~ Entropy - A Build thread.

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