Thursday, January 10, 2013

BMW Electric Water Pump Problems

A problem we have been seeing at our front counter and in our service shop are overheating issues on many of the newer 6-cylinder BMW models. A customer will walk in and request a gallon of coolant or a coolant system flush from our service department because of an overheating issue, but after a quick test the problem is easily identified as the electric water pump.

The issue isn't a leak or mechanical breakdown, but often starts out as a problem with the electric motor in the pump that begins to slow down, eventually coming to a complete stop. This is a part monitored by the primary vehicle control module and will give an indication of a problem with a simple system scan.  When detected, the error will read as a water pump speed deviation or a loss of communication to the water pump.

In either situation the water pump needs to be replaced.  If not caught sooner by a system scan, the only warning light that will come up on the dash will be a yellow then a red engine overheat indicator. DO NOT DRIVE YOUR VEHICLE IN THIS CONDITION! Heat damage can easily damage the aluminum block and require a complete and costly engine replacement or overhaul. 

Electric water pump replacement is easy and straight forward and requires the replacement of the aluminum “one time use” bolts as well.  Both the water pump and the bolts are available through BMP Design. To perform this repair yourself, a proper Bentley Service Manual is your best tool along with an adequate amount of Genuine BMW Coolant and a few hours time.  No special programming is required, our replacement water pump is completely plug and play.

Cars affected will include all variants of: E60 525i, 528i, 530i, E70 X5 3.0si, E82 128i coupe, E83 X3 3.0i, E85 Z4 3.0i, E86 Z4 3.0si, E88 128i, E89 Z4 30i Roadster, and E90/91/92/93 325i, 328i, 330i.

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