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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Wed, Apr-13-2011, 05:20:53 PM   #41
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by terraphantm View Post
...At 80, the needle is just below vertical. The needle becomes fully vertical between 82-85 degrees Celsius, and from 86+ (which I do hit on occasion) it actually leans to the right.
Mine does exactly this as well. I just checked last night with the OBC menu up as I was driving. It was very steady at 81 deg. C as I was driving, with the needle at about the 11 o'clock position (maybe a tad higher). Maybe these gauges are just calibrated to be more sensitive than most cars.

I should also note that my coolant gets up to temp pretty quickly (as quickly as it should). I think if you are experiencing a stuck-open thermostat, it would take much longer for the coolant to get up to temp, if it can even get there.
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Old Wed, Apr-13-2011, 06:09:20 PM   #42
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

I'm at a dealership right now for this problem, and they did indeed replace the thermostat. This also necessitated a coolant change, which someone was asking earlier if that was needed.
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Old Wed, Apr-13-2011, 06:26:30 PM   #43
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by BHenderson View Post
How far below noon is your needle? Have you checked your actual coolant temperature? Is your aux fan stuck on?
It ranges between the 1/4 mark (cold side) and noon.


How can I check the actual temp?


Aux fan seems okay per the newspaper test. (Looser when hot, stiffer when cold)
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Old Wed, Apr-13-2011, 06:55:28 PM   #44
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

Same issue, t-stat fixed it. Takes 15 minutes, just remember to refill with BMW coolant.
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Old Wed, Apr-13-2011, 09:42:02 PM   #45
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

I had bought my car with 11k on it, I noticed it doing same thing I figured bad thermostat, replaced it and it does same exact thing so I don't know what's up
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Old Thu, Apr-14-2011, 05:36:45 PM   #46
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by jkman720 View Post
How can I check the actual temp?
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showp...30&postcount=3

Option 7.0 gives you the coolant temperature where the trip odometer usually is.
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Old Mon, Oct-10-2011, 10:00:30 AM   #47
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Question Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by e4604 View Post
I had bought my car with 11k on it, I noticed it doing same thing I figured bad thermostat, replaced it and it does same exact thing so I don't know what's up
My water temperature gauge on the car operates for one year during winter. Between first left dot and middle during cruising at low speed.
I changed the thermostat in spring , everything was ok until august when one day with 30 c outside and ac on the water middle went a little on the left from the middle. Now that is 25 c and during my cruising at low speed the car s water temperature sits between first dot and middle. In traffic it is sit in the middle. Thermostat is 5 months old. I think that this is a normal thing. When it is cold outside and we are cruising at low speeds the niddle does go between first dot and middle
I also changed the water pump last July.
I do not know if this helps.
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Old Thu, Feb-02-2012, 09:34:21 PM   #48
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

I just changed my thermostat, waterpump, fan clutch, temp sensor and 50/50 distilled water/bmw coolant.

first heat cycle to bleed air was not under load, just warmed the car to operating temp, then let it cool completely, and then bleed and topup reservoir.

today(tonight) I took it for a road test (about 20degrees C outside), and I have a similar "issue". under load the gauge (water) is at noon. but under cruising it would drop to say 11:30.

obvs it is possible that I still have some air, which I will bleed tomorrow, but I am pretty certain my cooling system is now in 100% condition, and the behaviour is normal???
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Old Thu, Feb-02-2012, 10:59:16 PM   #49
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by deilenberger View Post
Your thermostat is shot. Running the engine at 126F is WAY cold, and will result in a very rich mixture going to the cylinders. That's not good since it tends to wash oil off the walls of the cylinders. The M3 thermostat is probably designed to run close to 220F or so - but BMW does change engine temperature to maximize efficiency. The water temp gage is buffered - meaning - what you see isn't what you have. BMW purposely makes it run at 12 noon so they don't get people complaining about the fluctuations in engine temp they use to maximize engine efficiency. If it's not at 12 noon - something is wrong. In this case - running cold - pretty much has to be the thermostat.
I dont think this post is entirely correct. Funny you mention the thermostat being shot if its not dead center. My temp guage has been just to the left of the noon mark all winter long. Just last Friday I had to replace my water pump and while in there put a brand new thermostat. I even flushed the coolant and used brand new coolant. The needle is just about in the same position when I drive. Ive noticed that in the cooler/colder months the temp needle sits just to the left of the noon position. I dont think theres anything wrong. Car runs normal.
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Old Mon, Sep-11-2017, 02:39:02 AM   #50
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Default Re: Another coolant temperature question

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Originally Posted by bimmerfan08 View Post
I dont think this post is entirely correct. Funny you mention the thermostat being shot if its not dead center. My temp guage has been just to the left of the noon mark all winter long. Just last Friday I had to replace my water pump and while in there put a brand new thermostat. I even flushed the coolant and used brand new coolant. The needle is just about in the same position when I drive. Ive noticed that in the cooler/colder months the temp needle sits just to the left of the noon position. I dont think theres anything wrong. Car runs normal.
You're fine if it's not dead center. I'm going to guess it's probably at around 86-88C if it's just to the left of noon. If it starts creeping up past noon, that's when you're in trouble (~92C, maybe? been a while).

I installed a sport fan clutch since these cars can't handle Texas weather (this is after a new radiator, stock fan clutch, waterpump, etc.).
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Discussing Another coolant temperature question in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)