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BMW Coolant Pump Replacement
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Pelican Technical Article:

BMW Coolant Pump Replacement

Nick Czerula


3 hours3 hrs






Set of sockets, wrenches, screwdrivers, two M6 bolts

Applicable Models:

BMW 325i Sedan (2006)
BMW 325xi Sedan/Wagon (2006)
BMW 328i Coupe/Conv (2007-13)
BMW 328i xDrive Coupe (2009-13)
BMW 328i xDrive Sedan (2009-11)
BMW 328i xDrive Wagon (2009-12)
BMW 328i/xi Sedan (2007-11)
BMW 328i/xi Wagon (2007-12)
BMW 328xi Coupe (2007-13)
BMW 330i/xi Sedan (2006)
BMW 335d/i/xi Sedan (2007-11)
BMW 335i xDrive Coupe (2009-13)
BMW 335i xDrive Sedan (2009-11)
BMW 335i/is Coupe/Conv (2007-13)
BMW 335xi Coupe (2007-13)

Parts Required:

Water pump, hoses, engine coolant, electrical connector seal.

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine.

Performance Gain:

Car will cool down again and repairing coolant leaks.

Complementary Modification:

Change serpentine belt, radiator hoses.

When a coolant pump begins to fail, you'll notice that the car tends to overheat at low engine speed, such as sitting at a stoplight. When you accelerate, the engine temperature will drop. Now, this is not always indicative of a coolant pump failure, but a good starting point. You may also want to try squeezing the top radiator hose with the engine warmed up and running. You should feel pressure build up on the back of the hose and surge once it is released. If you feel no pressure, it's a fair bet that the coolant pump is failing. BMW updated E90 models with an electronic water pump. This means you may replace your coolant pump due to electrical failure. The most common problem with these pumps is a fault code for coolant pump volume. If you remove the water pump from your E90 and plan on reinstalling it, store it with coolant inside, otherwise it will corrode and fail shortly after reinstalling it. Always replace aluminum fasteners each time they are removed and never reinstall a questionable coolant hose.

This can be a tough part to change as it is tucked away and behind many components. I like to remove the radiator when I have to replace a water pump, it adds time to the job, but makes it a lot easier. If you have an all wheel drive E90 or one with active steering, you're going to have to remove the radiator anyway. So I say just go for it and make your life easier no matter which model you own.

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with replacing the water pump on BMW E90 models. Be sure to work with a cool engine and confirm the cooling system lacks pressure before opening cooling system.

Remove engine splash shield. See our tech article on splash shield removing.

Drain cooling system. See our tech article on cooling system draining and filling.

Remove thermostat. See our tech article on thermostat replacing.

Figure 1

Working at the back of your water pump on right side of engine, loosen both hose clamps (green arrows)

Once the hose clamps are loose, remove the hoses from the water pump.
Figure 2

Once the hose clamps are loose, remove the hoses from the water pump. Be ready to catch any dripping coolant when hoses are removed.

Next you have to disconnect the electrical connector.
Figure 3

Next you have to disconnect the electrical connector. It is located at the bottom of the water pump. (green arrow) The release tab is on the back side.

Disconnect the water pump electrical connector by pressing retaining tab and pulling off.
Figure 4

Disconnect the water pump electrical connector by pressing retaining tab and pulling off. (green arrow)

Now it's time to remove the water pump fasteners.
Figure 5

Now it's time to remove the water pump fasteners. Start at the top front of the water pump and remove the E12 fastener. (green arrow) Throw this fastener away, it is aluminum and cannot be reused.

Then remove two remaining E12 fasteners at the bottom of the water pump.
Figure 6

Then remove two remaining E12 fasteners at the bottom of the water pump. (green arrows) Throw these fasteners away, they are aluminum and cannot be reused.

Once all the fasteners have been removed, remove the water pump from engine.
Figure 7

Once all the fasteners have been removed, remove the water pump from engine. Install new water pump and evenly tighten fasteners. Install coolant hoses and tighten clamps. Connect water pump electrical connector. Pay close attention to electrical connector. Once you think it is installed, try to pull it off. I found that the seal inside the connector can swell from oil contamination; this inhibits the connectors ability to fully seat and lock into place. If it will not lock into place, replace the seal on the electrical connector. It can be replaced separately from connector. Install thermostat, radiator and cooling fan. Install splash shields and fill and bleed cooling system. Remember to check cooling system for leaks and top up coolant when complete.

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Comments and Suggestions:
KD Comments: I have 2007 bmw 328i, it was overheating so i replaced the thermostat. I tried bleeding by following the steps... hold down the accelerator for 10 seconds with the heater on low and max temp. I was unable to hear anything and didnt see water flowing into the reservoir. So I started the engine and opened the bleed screw. At first the water flowed with no bubbles then as the engine started to get hot there were lots of bubbles flowing from the bleed screw. The fan came on and off until it reached about 90-100 degrees then it stayed on. The car still overheats. I squeezed the hose going from the thermostat to radiator...there was pressure but it wasnt hot. Whats wrong with my car?
April 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The water pump may not be coming on or failing once the engine is running. Check the DME for fault codes, if faulty it will set one. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ray Comments: I have a 2006 325i. The previous owner replaced the water pump and thermostat about 3 years ago. The car has 120,000 or so miles on it. The car overheated and we stopped and checked the coolant level. It was slightly low. We added coolant, and allowed the engine to cool. Because we were 1 mile or so from home, we later started it to move it home, thinking that it wouldn't even warm up in that distance. It overheated after about 1/2 mile. We performed the bleed procedure to see if it was moving any coolant and the pump didn't work at all. There are no faults on the instrument panel, and an ODB2 reader did not show any faults. Is this the water pump, or could it be an electronic or wiring problem?
March 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be a faulty thermostat. Check if the hoses are both warm and the coolant is flowing. A quick test it so perform the bleed procedure to check if the water pump turns on.

- Nick at Pelican Parts
john Comments: hi so im the one with the 2008 b,w 335i. and i brought it to bmw. and they said something was having problems. i forgot what its called. but its equivalent to the power control moduele in other cars. they said that is why my gas guage is not working either. but i have to wait a week until the part comes in for them to look at my coolant problem. could this be the problem though? id hate to have to buy a new waterpump and have it installed.
February 27, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It's hard for me to comment without knowing the problem, fault codes and part name they suggested. Can you share that info? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
john Comments: Hi i have a 2008 335i. Just recently started having problems with the engine coolant system. I drive. And the yellow light comes on. Then my fan kicks on high. And then i get the red light. Then it goes to limp mode.
February 21, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be an engine temp issue. I would start by checking the vehicle for fault codes. If multiple systems are not working properly, fault codes will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Aaron Comments: 2006 330xi overheats occasionally, did the bleed procedure and it got a lot of air out and now seems to be holding a steady level. But I still get the over temp sometimes but most of the time if I let it sit it will cool down and when I start back up in 10 to 15 min it will run ther rest of the day fine. If the outlet of the engine to the radiator is hot but not the outlet from the radiator to the pump could it be the thermostatI am looking for a diagram of the coolant flow to help me on this or is it for sure the pump. Can I verify the pump is getting power? During the bleed process should it be a steady flow and if it shuts off everyone in a while not air bubbles is that supposed to happen or is the pump bad. I am really trying to isolate it to the thermostat vice the pump.
January 6, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The coolant pump and thermostat both usually set fault codes when they fail. I would check the DME for fault codes to start. Then you can run the coolant pump using the scan tool as well. If the pump runs, you can assume it is working. If you do not have access to a scan tool, use the coolant bleeding procedure to activate the coolant pump, it will run while bleeding. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Archid Comments: My 2006 325i 70k miles overheats when my AC is on. Cool it down for a minute and then drove again without the AC running, no over heat warning.
December 15, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check if the electric fan is running on high with the a/c on. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
drdanielroman Comments: Hi, I have an 320i E90 2006. I encounter same problem 3 times already. while driving at low speed the radiator drain plug popped out and lost all the cooling liquid. I imagine that the cooling circuit is getting overpressure and the drain plug pops out. What can be the reason for it?

In the same time I have, as many others, a Valvetronic problem. After long trips if I switch off the engine and re-start before engine cooling off 3-4hours It's working with limited power: not over 3000rpm and big loss of power sometimes vvv difficult to make it up hill. I had the Valvetronic sensor changed. worked ok for one 150 miles trip and the engine light came back. I had the Valvetronic engine changed, all ok for 200 miles and of-course engine light came back. I already spent about £1000 with this Valvetronic thing. What do you suggest?
Thank you
December 11, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would inspect the radiator and drain plug, the threads may be stripped on either one.

The valvetronic fault may be worn engine parts or a faulty sensor. Start by checking for fault codes and running a test on the system using a BMW scanner. - Nick at Pelican Parts
Gottasellmy996 Comments: I'm trying to confirm I have a water pump failure without driving or towing the car to the dealer. I was cruising home on the interstate 50F ambient temp. Without warning, I get a red overheat symbol and car goes into limp mode oil temps were 200F. I limp along 1-2 minutes and the symbol decreases to yellow. I completed a system pressure test and passed. I squeezed the upper radiator hose with the car running, but didn't notice pressure surging. I think I have a failed water pump, just surprised because the car has 78k miles '06 330i.
October 19, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: it could be a bad pump. Try bleeding the system, check if the pump turns on during the process. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
CJ Comments: I have a 325i 01/2006 release year and it is experiencing over heating problems. Did check the error codes and I have the water pump communication failure. Did try a system bleed and the pump was not responding. After unplugging the battery connector for more than 10 mins and reconnecting, I was able to do the water pump system bleed without any issue and the communication error was not present anymore. Is the water pump getting bad or is it a water pump relay? If it is the relay were it is located? The car has 120k miles.
October 6, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a faulty water pump. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Brandon Comments: Good Afternoon, I have an 07 e92 335i, I am at 100k and the waterpump has yet to be replaced. Are there any signs of when it should be replaced? Would hate to be stranded somewhere. Is it common to replace the pump as to avoid any future issues? Thanks in advance!
September 15, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sometimes they will set a fault code before failing. Other than that it is when they fail totally and cause over heating. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Guilllermo Comments: Hello Sir, I would like to know what parts I need besides the pump, the thermostat and the coolant. I believe the bolts? I am not planning on changing any hoses as they look ok. Can you tell me what else I need?
September 8, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The bolts and I would suggest the hoses as the sealing O-rings usually leak after removal. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ola Comments: My mechanic says there's no power going into the water pump. I gave him a new water pump but he doesn't want to put in the car. The relays and fuses all work fine. Do you know what could be the problem.
September 7, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be the control module or fuse for the circuit. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Dylan Comments: Thank you for your response, Nick!

I have so far solved my overheating problem. I replaced only the Thermostat because it looked obvious of not opening, because its always running at 4% opening. Now it starts to open once the coolant temp reaches 96 celcius, and would regulate to maintain between 84-96 celcius. I tried 180kph and the temp was only 90 celcius! Relive now that I could overtake those smaller cars on the highway.
July 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Great news! Thanks for the follow up. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Dylan Comments: My 325i will overheats after more than 10 mins driving over 180kph with temp reaching 122 celcius. There was no problem at all below that speed.
- Fault codes: Irregular waterpump speed
- Fault codes: over current to waterpump
- Fault codes: Signal error to thermostat
- Waterpump operation % sometimes drop to zero and restart back in split second while driving
- Thermostat opening is always at 4%

Is the waterpump and thermostat confirmed faulty or water passage blockage?
July 22, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Likely a faulty water pump and thermostat. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
giantist Comments: Please help brother mistakenly drove my BMW e90 with the expansion take open and obviously after some time the car displayed the orange low coolant light then immediately turned red and the car switched off. He tried to start and managed to drive about 3 km to the airport and parked it there for about half a day since he was in a meeting then he came back and drove it to the nearest garage about 500m from the airport to top up the coolant, however he says it initially refused to start and would only crank as though the battery was low. The same cranking thing happened later on when he drove from his workplace. The next day I replaced my radiator cos the day before I had noticed the plastic part on the edge had a small leak so I thought it best to just replace it. Now the problem is this problem of cranking seems to have gotten worse today and I noticed white smoke when if finally started and then the smoke subsided. I also noticed coolant leaks on the floor of my engine and took the car back to the garage that changed my radiator and they confirmed my new radiator and hoses connected to it are not leaking and they suspect it could be my water pump that's leaking. Does this sound like a water pump giving up or something else? Please help before a lot more things get damaged.. I pray and hope it's nothing more than the water pump. Your help will be very much appreciated.
July 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would pressure test the cooling system. If the system will not hold pressure and there are no external leaks the head gasket may be faulty. If external leaks surface, start there.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Andy m5 Comments: I have a 2006 bmw m5 my car read engine over heading, they told me my alternator is bad,so it will give different messages. It's that water pump is not leaking or making any noise,my fan is running.

June 1, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If charging system voltage is low, water pump function could drop. Have you checked water pump operation, or charging system voltage and current? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Leaff Comments: I have an over heating problem. I think it's the pump but when bleed the system it seem to pump. When bleeding, is the pump supposed to spurt and stop over and over or is there supposed to be a continuous stream in the canister.
May 23, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should run the entire time. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Lancair Comments: If my water pump fails, what's the chance it's just a fuse? Any idea which fuse? Thanks
April 23, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Not very likely. What vehicle are you working on? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
slimber Comments: I want second hand for 2006 model Bmw e90 323i,should I buy n52 or n54. My car use electrical water pump
April 15, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Buy a new pump. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Zach Comments: Re-bled it yesterday morning, pump ran. Coolant level went down to normal from high. Some air still left in system? Sorry and thanks for your help
April 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be, however these systems are not that hard to bleed. RUn it for a short while, allow vehicle to cool, then check the level. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Zach Comments: I heard the pump kick on and the coolant was flowing when I did it. I overfilled it a little bit and figured it was small enough amount to where it would vent itself out but it was still high yesterday morning when I looked at it if that matters
April 2, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You need to confirm the pump is running or not when the engine overheats. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Zach Comments: A little off topic but maybe you could help, changed radiator two weeks ago and bled cooling system. Pump was running and everything was great for two weeks but it overheated today. Think the pump is the issue? Thanks, I never thought I could change a BMW radiator until you guys!
March 31, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Is the coolant flowing through the system? Do you hear the pump kick on during the bleeding process? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Andrew Comments: Question on Waterpump installation for E90 330i - the 3 new torx bolts that install the waterpump; is a special torx socket a must or can a standard 12 point socket be used?
March 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It is an E12 external Torx socket. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
weld Comments: Will the a faulty water pump create a stored fault?
February 12, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes. Most times they will. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
06 325 xi Comments: I can share my experiences from changing the water pump on my 2006 E91 325xi. No active steering.
- Did remove cooling fan, did not remove radiator.
- Dropped the sway bar.
- It is really tight to access some of the hose clamps! Attack some from the front, some from the back, remove water pump bolts holding it onto the engine to make it possible to wiggle it back and forth to reach clamps.

Really appreciate the guides and the time you spend answering comments on here! Amazing!

November 19, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Awesome, thanks for sharing your experience.

..and for the kind words. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
E90 330XI Comments: It should be noted within the write-up that BMW's with the X-drive all wheel drive system require the front passenger wheel and inner plastic lining to be removed in order to access the two worm gear hose clamps on the back of the thermostat. It would also be helpful to lower the sway bar out of the way.

Excellent write up otherwise. On behalf of BMW owner's all over the world, Thanks. We appreciate these tech articles.
November 19, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: right on, a bit harder to access everything on the all-wheel drive models.

Thanks for the additional info and feedback. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
BMW E90 Comments: My E90 325 starts overheating if I drive over 200km/h for more than 10min, under normal driving I don't have overheating issues, stopped to let the car cool off then continued with my journey and alarms cleared. Is this a water pump problem? Coolant level was okay
September 14, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be, sounds like a restriction of flow problem. Check out our bleeding procedure for your vehicle. If there isn't a steady stream of coolant out of your reservoir bleeder hole, the pump may be faulty. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Gustavo Carcano Comments: my electrical water pump is damaged, could your help me to send the price for this part, it is for a BMW 325i 2008 Mexican or 2006 for US, the part number front is 11.51 7 545 201 -04. thanks for your prompt response
September 2, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out which part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
xavinoo Comments: Nick, thanks for your response to the previous question I posted. It's been about two weeks since I replaced the water pump and thermostat and everything was going well until today. Exiting my car I heard my cooling fan absolutely wailing like the car was overheated and noticed some coolant drops in the engine bay. I'm troubled because after I let the car cool down to check the coolant level which was still at max I attempted to circulate the pump to get the air out of the system and I am not hearing the new pump circulate any coolant through the system i.e. placing my ear on the expansion tank to hear the air bubbles exiting the system. I should say that after the initial replacement I was still getting a P1028 code which indicated that the coolant temp was too low! I ruled out a bad thermostat because it was brand new.

I am stumped because this is a brand new pump and thermostat!! There should be no way that the pump has failed me already! I don't know what to do or how to diagnose the problem now. I can assure you that all electrical connectors were cleaned before the install of the new components and that the pump initially circulated the coolant like a champ. There were no leaks in the system because I left the engine cover off to check for any leaks form the hose connections for about a week after install! Now I have no flow at least from the expansion tank and my thermostat amber light has come back on! I'm in need of some help because I certainly do not want to have to buy a new pump and thermostat.

I have now plugged in my battery charger to leave my car charging overnight to see if maybe my battery was too low on juice to run the pump properly and try again in the morning. But if that doesn't work I certainly don't know what to do next! I don't want to be stranded again with my 4 month old son and wife... and don't want to blow a head gasket either....or have to buy new parts! Do you have any suggestions for how I should proceed?
July 14, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would confirm the coolant level is correct. Then try bleeding the cooling system again. If there is no air trapped, turn on ignition and listen for the water pump. You may have to have a friend turn ignition on while you listen. If the pump is faulty, you may hear a ratchet type sound as it tries to turn, then it will stop. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ed Comments: What's the part number for the electrical connector seal? I'd like to have it on hand so the process can be done in one go.
June 30, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out which part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Ed Comments: Is there any significant difference when doing an xdrive e90?
June 21, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The X-drive system makes it tight. So you will have less room to work. But that is all. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
xavinoo Comments: I popped one of the retaining clips when removing the one of the cooling hoses linked to the Thermostat. It's the smaller of the two retaining clip thermostat hoses... I'm waiting for my parts to arrive but was wondering what the best way and orientation to reattach the retaining clip? I see that the ends of each clip are pointed in different directions and didn't know if I had to slide the retaining clip over the hose or insert the ends first than slide over the hose? I obviously don't want any cooling system leaks! Thanks for your fantastic tutorials and hopefully the reinstallation of the thermo+pump is successful... At least it was for my valve cover gasket!
June 9, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: When I pop one off, I place one side on, then pop the other over the hose end. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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