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E39 530i Buyer Recommendations?

Discussion in 'E39 (1997-2003)' started by rsdavidson, May 11, 2008.

    rsdavidson guest

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    Hello all,

    I'm looking for a good E39 530i, probably Steptronic, toward the end of the model run, and would like to know if there is a buyer's guide posted anywhere. Short of that, do you all have recommendations of what to look for or could you ID known weak points of these cars? Yes, I know, the auto trans is an inherent weak point. On that subject, are there any good ways to keep them running? I would expect frequent fluid changes and use of RedLine or other high quality fluids.

    Thanks,
    Bob

    '99 M3
    National Capital Chapter, BMWCCA

    morea3ic guest

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    Welcome!

    .
    Hi Bob,

    Welcome to the forum.

    Calaway530I guest

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    Try Bimmer magazine

    They have done a buyers guide and a couple of updates over the last few years.

    Helped me weed out a few bad ones when I was looking.

    Carfax was slightly helpful.

    The best help was a GREAT indie mechanic that found a car that was 2 cars welded into 1 and falsely advertised.


    Just my 2 cents

    Autohaus guest

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    Change the auto trans fluid every 30K miles ONLY IF it has been changed before. If it has high mileage and the fluid has never been changed and is shifting fine, don't change it at all. Every 60K miles, change the water pump, thermo, belts and hoses (hoses last beyond that, but since those other parts will be changed, I figure that I want them changed as well). Fan clutch and radiator every 90K miles. E39's are great cars.........

    Ramdol guest

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    You're replacing the radiator at 90K? What about radiator flush and re-charge frequency?

    Jonathan Spira guest

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    I would try for a MY2003, which has all of the refinements of the E39., if possible. I think the last year was the best in terms of reliability and also refinement of the car's systems.

    You can add the BMW Bluetooth retrofit kit to the car (2001 forward I believe) and for 2003, you can also add Sirius sat. radio if you wish (as long as you don't have satnav).

    Autohaus guest

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    Common sense tells the average car guy that when you are replacing the radiator, the coolant will be changed/flushed, etc....;)
    • Member

    az3579

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    Flushing the radiator to remove it isn't an entire flush; there would still be some coolant in the block. I think he's referring to the full flush, block and radiator.

    Autohaus guest

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    Exactly what I meant. If I were going to change out my radiator, that is what I would do. Common sense, ya know? Remember, use BMW coolant only :)

    Ramdol guest

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    A full flush was exactly what I was refering to. My point, however, was whether one should flush periodically (e.g. every 30K, 60K, etc.) My dealer service mgr indicates the only significant BMW radiator problem was with the early Z3's which was resolved early on. For my 2002 530i, their experience suggests no flushing nesessary and radiator life up to 240k miles in Florida climate
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    az3579

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    Some people recommend a flush every 2 years but some do it sooner.

    Autohaus guest

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    The dealer is blowing smoke about this. A "stock" radiator cannot last 240K :confused:. Also, dealers recommend a coolant flush/change/etc... every 4 years. I would do it every two years.

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