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BMW Thermostat Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

BMW Thermostat Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$200

Talent:

*****

Tools:

Set of sockets, wrenches, screwdrivers,

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:

Thermostat, hoses, engine coolant

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine.

Performance Gain:

Car will cool down again and fault code will go away

Complementary Modification:

Flush cooling system

BMW E90 models utilize an electrically-heated engine thermostat. The thermostat is integrated with the thermostat housing; the two are replaced as a unit. The thermostat is mounted to the right side of the engine at the front. The DME (engine control module) controls and monitors operation of the thermostat. If a fault occurs a code is stored in the DME, usually with a description of "Map cooling circuit". A fault code can be present yet the vehicle will lack any cooling system issues, such as overheating. 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 thermostat, 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.

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

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

Remove the radiator. See our tech article on radiator removing.

First thing you have to do is remove the power steering cooling loop.
Figure 1

First thing you have to do is remove the power steering cooling loop. Remove the fastener at the rubber insulator (green arrow). If the rubber insulator spins while you try to remove the fastener, hold it steady with a pair of pliers.

Pull the power steering cooling loop down and out of your way for the remainder of the procedure.
Figure 2

Pull the power steering cooling loop down and out of your way for the remainder of the procedure.

Next you have to remove the front hose connected to the thermostat.
Figure 3

Next you have to remove the front hose connected to the thermostat. It is right above the subframe and right side of sway bar. (green arrow)

Using a flathead screwdriver, release the thermostat hose retaining clip by prying up.
Figure 4

Using a flathead screwdriver, release the thermostat hose retaining clip by prying up. (green arrow) The hose clip will stop at the unlocked position. I suggest leaving it installed on the hose so you don't lose it.

Then disconnect the hose by pulling off the thermostat.
Figure 5

Then disconnect the hose by pulling off the thermostat. You may have to wiggle the hose a bit to get it to move free. Be careful not to damage hose, it is made of plastic.

Next you will have to remove the rear hose from the thermostat.
Figure 6

Next you will have to remove the rear hose from the thermostat. Using a flathead screwdriver, release the thermostat hose retaining clip by prying up. (green arrow) The hose clip will stop at the unlocked position. I suggest leaving it installed on the hose so you don't lose it.

Then disconnect the hose by pulling off the thermostat.
Figure 7

Then disconnect the hose by pulling off the thermostat. You may have to wiggle the hose a bit to get it to move free. Be careful not to damage hose, it is made of plastic. Stay clear when hose is pulled off, coolant is retained in it even after draining, you don't want to take a coolant bath.

Working at the back of the thermostat.
Figure 8

Working at the back of the thermostat. Use a small flathead screwdriver, release the electrical connector and remove it.

Now it's time to remove the last two hoses.
Figure 9

Now it's time to remove the last two hoses. First loosen the hose clamp at the lower hose. (green arrow). Then remove the hose from the thermostat.

Then, loosen the hose clamp at the next hose.
Figure 10

Then, loosen the hose clamp at the next hose. (green arrow). Then remove the hose from the thermostat. Stay clear when hose is pulled off, coolant is retained in it even after draining, you don't want to take a coolant bath.

With all the hoses disconnected, remove two 10mm thermostat mounting fasteners.
Figure 11

With all the hoses disconnected, remove two 10mm thermostat mounting fasteners. (green arrows)

Then remove the thermostat from the front, over the subframe.
Figure 12

Then remove the thermostat from the front, over the subframe. Be prepared to catch the excess coolant that may leak in a container. Install new thermostat and evenly tighten fasteners. Install coolant hoses, listen for an audible click to confirm that clips have engaged. A small amount of new coolant can be used to lubricate coolant hose O-rings, this will make installing hose easier. Connect thermostat electrical connector. Install radiator and cooling fan. Install splash shields and fill and bleed cooling system. Remember to check the cooling system for leaks and top up coolant when complete.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Ryan Comments: Hello, my 2006 E90 325i 100,000 miles in Michigan weather is throwing P0128 code coolant below regulating temperature. However, when I'm driving the temperature still gets up to 94C on the highway - is this really too low?

Should I replace the thermostat? Also, would it be a good idea to replace the water pump with it? I generally don't like replacing parts that aren't broken.
November 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would start with a new thermostat. The temp at the lower hose or thermostat may be too low when driving. Your gauge does not display the actual temp. COnsider more of a cold and warm indicator. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Dave Comments: I have a 2006 E90. When the weather gets cold the air will not blow warm and it will overheat if I drive it. If I turn off and let it sit for a few mins it will eventually fix itself. I don't seem to have this issue unless it gets below freezing. Just did a coolant change and pump pump seems to function....thermostat?
November 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: SOunds like a thermostat. I would start there. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Jeff Comments: Is the bleed process on the E90 the same as it is on the E46? Open the bleed screw, turn key on, turn defrost to high, then top off coolant until full?
November 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: See this article:

http://www.pelicanparts.com/BMW/techarticles/BMW-3-Series-E90/WATER-Draining_Filling_Cooling_System/WATER-Draining_Filling_Cooling_System.htm - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
NATAN Comments: Helo I have a 325i overheating.I verifi that when I did turn on heat system the engine don´t has more overheating. This is the thermostat?
October 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: thermostat or water pump. Check if there is a steady stream of coolant flowing out of the bleeder pipe in the reservoir. if so, the thermostat is likely at fault. If not, the water pump may be faulty. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Josh Comments: I have a 2009 328i xdrive and it over heated on my wife, I got it cooled down and home and attempted the bleed process but I do not hear the water pump kick on at all, is this more than likely a bad water pump?
October 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would assume so, if it is not turning on. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Lona Comments: My service engine light is on and the code it's throwing is P0128, but my car isn't over heating. Would that mean it's just a bad sensor and not the thermostat tself? Thanks in advance for your response
October 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: MOst likely a faulty thermostat. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
B BOY Comments: Thanx Nick
September 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: NP. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
B BOY Comments: Hi! im just doing a follow up on my thermostat on my 335i, so is it also possible that my thermostat censor could be the result of my water bottle overheating or is it the thermostat itself. is it possible to remove the thermostat and just drive the car as is or should it be replaced immediately.
September 19, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would replace it. The sensor should not cause an overheating situation. The thermostat will. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
B BOY Comments: I have a 335i E93, and i just replaced my oil filter housing gasket. now my car overheats, they say its the thermostat because my car is a 2007 model and it needs to be changed. is it the thermostat or could it be something else.
September 13, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: A thermostat can cause overheating. If you don't trust the diagnosis, get a second opinion. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
David Comments: To find out if it's the thermostat or the water pump would I have to hook it up to a computer?
August 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No, to check if the water pump works, try the bleed procedure, does the water pump activate? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
talleres adriatico Comments: hello I have a BMW 330 i n52 faulty 2e85 BSD , electric coolant failure , which would be a valid diagnosis.
August 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Most likely the electric water pump. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
dave Comments: HI I was wondering to get to the thermostat did u guys jack the car up and take off the bottom lid
August 8, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Summer Comments: My over heat light came on today. Do i need to habe it hooked up to a computer or is it something that can b diagnosed w out hooking it up. What does the light indicate or warn about. Forgive my lack of car knowledge
August 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Depends on what light. I would check if the coolant level is Ok to start, then check the vehicle for fault codes. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Andy Comments: I was driving my 2006 bmw 330i at one point at a red light it has a idel drop hook it up to a computer it's said thermostat can a thermostat do that?
August 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If the temp is wrong, yes idle can be affected. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
lcplrawlins Comments: my car is not running and its telling me that the engine is overheating ,and the coolant signal came on but my coolant level is good so i don't know what the the problem is
July 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be a sensor fault. I would start by checking the DME for fault codes. If the system is not working properly, a fault code will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Posthoang Comments: In figure 11 of the changing thermostat guide do you know the exact size for the bolts I misplaced one of them
June 29, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Got it, M6x25 bolts. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Godson213 Comments: My 2006 Bmw 325xi E90 fan turns on too loud.Is it normal?I just replaced thermostat week ago.What do you think might be the problem?Bad Thermostat?
June 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The fan may be faulty or the coolant sensor or thermostat signal is wrong. Check the vehicle for fault codes to start. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Chris Comments: Hi, I'm replacing my water pump and thermostat on my 07 328xi, and I noticed the power steering loop is different, as is the sway bar, any advice on the best way to disconnect them to add a little room? Also, any special tricks to getting the hoses in the back of the pump & thermo? I got them off but I'm not sure how I'm going to get them back on when installing as there's very little room back there
June 19, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You should be able to lift i t up and off the mounting bracket. Looks like you got the lower stud nut off. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
mikeg Comments: I have a 2007 328I BMW.I can drve about 15 miles @ 75 MPH and the yellow temp. warning light will come on. When I turn on the heater it goes off within a minute. If I turn the AC the yellow temperature light come on after 10 min. When I turn to heat it will go off. I changed rhe water pump. I thinking my thermostat stays in the open position. Can I blled the system correctly if it stays open? I have replaced the waterpump a month ago and just bought a thermostat. I havent received the red over heating signal yet.
June 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It will bleed with a stuck open thermostat. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Cam Comments: My e90 325i radiator fan turns on and spins like a hurricane when it start up and when I drive it it just turns to limp mode. I'm getting a p2185 code I already changed the engine coolant temperature sensor and I'm getting ready to change the radiator temperature sensor. I wanted to make sure it's not the water pump or thermostat.
May 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would check the sensor at the radiator hose. If faulty, it could cause this issue. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Mehdi aminian Comments: Hi,i have 320 2006,and my fan works within 10 min after starteven in cold weather after some high power driving,i dont know its water temp is really high or some thng else order to fan work. Tnx
May 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check coolant temp sensor warm up time in the DME data stream using a BMW scan tool. That will tell you if the sensor is working or not. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
nikolas Comments: Good afternoon, I have a 2011 335xi coupe. The fan kicks on whenever it feels, the other day my car went to limp mode on the highway I stopped to the side for 15 min and it was ok. The temp was just above 260.Is this a sensor or thermostat or water pump? or all of them?
April 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be an engine temp or coolant pump issue. I would start by checking the DME for fault codes. If the system is not working properly, a fault code will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Paul Comments: My 2008 328xi has minimum heat in the habitacle. If I change the thermostat do I have to change the water pump also?
February 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You don't have to. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Tamer Comments: In concern to my previous comment about the 2008 335i. Do you think I should start with the rheostat? Or because the gushing coolant it's a definite bad water pump ?
January 25, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: do you mean thermostat? It could be the cause of your overheating issue. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Tamer Comments: My 2008 335i radiator fan came on as soon as I turned on the engine no faults. Then gon yellow overheating then red . I turned off the vehicle and opened the hood and started to open the coolant reservoir coolant started to gush out but it wasn't that hot it was only warm.
January 22, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: This could be a faulty water pump or thermostat. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
E90 Comments: My e90 325i is overheating but when shut off and restart my car fix it self, what cause This problem ? Thanks
January 21, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be a faulty water pump or thermostat. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ronkee Comments: Hello, I broke the rubber insulator on the power steering loop, do you know where I could find a New one?
January 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Pelican Parts. 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
 
Pittstar63 Comments: Great DIY as always! I have a 2009 335Xi and have been getting a code P0128. I cleared the code a few times with a scanner but it keeps coming back. What I have noticed now that our weather is much colder is that the cabin takes much longer to heat up and the oil temperature doesn't rise much above the lowest indication of 160 degrees. Would you recommend changing the thermostat? It seems to me that the thermostat is open and not allowing the engine temperature to rise to an optimum level.
January 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a faulty thermostat to me. I would start there.

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
 
Eric Comments: I replaced the water pump and thermostat, but the thermostat is staying open. The heater only works when idle, so I believe its a fuse or the thermostat electrical wire. How would I repair the thermostat electrical wire in an E90 N52 325i?

This is the third time the thermostat has been replaced as well. The car does not overheat.
December 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Is there a fault code for the thermostat? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Oscar Comments: Hello, I have a 2006 Bmw 325i e90 I replace the thermostat and water pump and the running temperature its from 60C to 67C, seems like the thermostat fails open, I replace the thermostat twice and doesn't solve the problem, and the service engine light indicates is the thermostat, any ideas?
December 18, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check the wiring to the thermostat. It may be damaged. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Paul Comments: Hello, hope you can help, I have a bmw 525i 2008 model e90, when the engine is at operating temp, the cooling fan comes in to cool the engine, but does not switch off, it continues to run until I switch the engine off. When cold the fan does not come in but after I have driven about 20km it come on and stays on.
October 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a sensor issue. I would start by checking the DME for fault codes. If the system is not working properly, a fault code will be set. This will be your best bet when diagnosing.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
steve-v-j Comments: The water pump in my 2006 325i will not shut off and drains the battery dead if parked for any length of time...any idea what would cause this?
October 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: a faulty pump would. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
George Comments: I have a BMW 325i E90 it starts show overheat symbol, the fan run very fast when it happens ,I flash the coolant but problem continue, how can I tell is it thermostat, water pump or anything else,I am thinking about do it myself, please help
August 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Start by checking the vehicle for fault codes. Thermostats and water pumps will set fault codes. You can also try the bleeding procedure, when trying it, monitor the water pump to see if it comes on. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
sparks Comments: I have a 320i E90 2005 model. It after a run it shows the sign of overheating and fan not running and what is the cause of this probmlem?need help
July 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be low coolant, bad water pump , bad thermostat, bad head gasket. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
bob Comments: to change a thermostat on a e93 engine
April 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Use this tech article. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Strawbery Comments: Hello,
can you help me find the clip for sale, the one that is at the very back? We lost it inside the car?
October 5, 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
 

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