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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 Thu, Jun-06-2019, 05:56:41 PM   #1
Fresh1179
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Default Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

My car has been getting dangerously close to the red during everyday driving. I know that the manual says that operation between the two dots is normal. This is above that. I have bled the system, there is no air. The most likely culprit is the clutch fan. My aux/pusher fan is performing well.
That begs the question, will an aftermarket “performance” radiator help with DAILY driving temps. This would be installed in conjunction with an electric fan. The car will see the track, but as we unfortunately know, it will see many more miles in traffic. The car is at 105k now so I’m looking at a complete cooling system overhaul. The ambient temperatures in N.C. are in the mid-90’s and VIR will see similar temps. I am looking at Mishimoto and their fan (along with replacement of the other cooling components). Does anyone have experience with this setup (or similar) in a high temp ambient temp area on a daily basis? Track experience would be great as well. Thanks!


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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:11:50 PM   #2
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

Most people on here will tell you that new OE parts will be more than fine for daily and it's true...these cars don't overheat in daily traffic until something is old or worn out. I would check the fan clutch, replace if needed along with the fan blades.

If you want an aftermarket rad then Koyorad or Zionzville (sp?) are both really good but new OE rad is also perfect. I've been running a Koyorad for the past year with no mechanical fan at all to see how well the rad works with just the front pusher and I have only gone up to 88c in hot weather sitting in traffic and then the pusher kicks in and drops it back down to 82-83c.
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:12:25 PM   #3
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

The clutch fan is the primary problem. I personally went with a SPAL fan and it helped with overheating in traffic, even on the stock rad.

After that I replaced the old stock radiator with Koyorad which helped even further, but I suspect it's right on par with a fresh OE BMW Radiator. There are mixed reviews on Mishimoto

The most noticeable improvement I had in on-track cooling was actually my CSF oil cooler.
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:14:38 PM   #4
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

For your application, I would avoid the Mishimoto fan. Not strong enough to cool the motor in the South.

I think your best look is the CSF rad. and a SPAL fan setup.

In the meantime, run the heat and cabin fan on your car if you start to overheat.
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:22:14 PM   #5
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

My coupe will sit in traffic all day long without overhearting.

My wagon starts to tick up in traffic now that it's starting to get warm outside.

The weird thing is that the wagon has a newish water pump, fan clutch and fan where as the coupe is still on original components. I've been wondering if it's an airflow issue due to the non-m front bumper cover or if it has something to do with half of the radiator shroud missing for the csl box. This combo never got hot in my convertible, which is why I'm leaning towards airflow issues.

If your car is stock, I would say to start with the basics as your car shouldn't overheat if your cooling system components are in proper working order.
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:30:23 PM   #6
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

I suspect you have more problems than just the clutch fan. This probably won't be a popular opinion around here but I haven't ran a clutch fan in close to 4 years on this car (without the addition of an extra electric fan in its place just the stock aux fan) and more before that on my previous e36 m3. Never had an overheating issue even in prime florida summer heat which I'm sure is worse than you see in NC. I see stop and go traffic almost daily and oil temps will climb slightly above 205 but water always stays right in the center never seen it move to the right like yours. My cooling system is also fairly old too though I'm getting ready to replace it. If you're getting past the right dot you have serious cooling system issues imo and I'd be looking to replace the radiator and water pump asap. I don't think you're going to get any extra benefit from an aftermarket rad and should stick to OE.
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Interior: Cobra Nogaro seats, BMW Performance pedals, OE alcantara boots, mason clutch pedal, Xtrons 9" headunit w/ carplay

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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 06:39:30 PM   #7
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

Sounds like your clutch fan is bad as stated. I live in the hot Las Vegas desert and we see summer temps from 100-120 degrees. I'm running a Koyorad radiator, Spal 2082 electric fan controlled by a PWM unit and the Aux Fan still in place. Coolant ratio of 80/20 water vs coolant which cools better in really hot climates. I've tested coolant ratio's over the last few years and this works the best with approx 10-15 degrees difference. I recently changed my water pump, T-stat, pulleys, radiator and fan. Yesterday it was 106 degrees and my coolant temps were 195 idling in traffic.

Take a look at my build thread with pictures and links.
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showpost.php?p=1067958636&postcount=217

Thread about the Spal 2082 Electric Fan
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=599479
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 07:01:58 PM   #8
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

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Originally Posted by . View Post
I suspect you have more problems than just the clutch fan. This probably won't be a popular opinion around here but I haven't ran a clutch fan in close to 4 years on this car (without the addition of an extra electric fan in its place just the stock aux fan) and more before that on my previous e36 m3. Never had an overheating issue even in prime florida summer heat which I'm sure is worse than you see in NC. I see stop and go traffic almost daily and oil temps will climb slightly above 205 but water always stays right in the center never seen it move to the right like yours. My cooling system is also fairly old too though I'm getting ready to replace it. If you're getting past the right dot you have serious cooling system issues imo and I'd be looking to replace the radiator and water pump asap. I don't think you're going to get any extra benefit from an aftermarket rad and should stick to OE.


I agree with you %100. I’m changing out all the old components when I take the old radiator out anyways so hopefully that will be an added bonus.


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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 07:03:09 PM   #9
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

Run less antifreeze and more water if you live in an area where it doesn't get very cold.
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Old Thu, Jun-06-2019, 07:03:29 PM   #10
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Default Re: Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance

Quote:
Originally Posted by WOLFN8TR View Post
Sounds like your clutch fan is bad as stated. I live in the hot Las Vegas desert and we see summer temps from 100-120 degrees. I'm running a Koyorad radiator, Spal 2082 electric fan controlled by a PWM unit and the Aux Fan still in place. Coolant ratio of 80/20 water vs coolant which cools better in really hot climates. I've tested coolant ratio's over the last few years and this works the best with approx 10-15 degrees difference. I recently changed my water pump, T-stat, pulleys, radiator and fan. Yesterday it was 106 degrees and my coolant temps were 195 idling in traffic.

Take a look at my build thread with pictures and links.
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showpost.php?p=1067958636&postcount=217

Thread about the Spal 2082 Electric Fan
http://www.m3forum.net/m3forum/showthread.php?t=599479


Thank you! I’m going to take a look at this tonight. This is looking like a pretty good solution along with replacement of the other cooling components.


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Discussing Overheating in Traffic—Aftermarket Radiator Daily Performance 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)