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      02-28-2019, 05:05 PM   #1
mKilgore
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CSF Radiator Issues

I'm hoping any of you that have installed a CSF High Performance Radiator can chime in with your experience. In preparation for more regularly tracking my 135i, I have been addressing cooling issues. My car is stock with no tune.

I installed the CSF Radiator, bled the system, took the car out for a drive and after about 5 minutes, the radiator fan kicked on high and my coolant gauge starting going crazy (rapidly changing temperatures from 150F to 400F and everywhere in between). The car also threw a "thermostat jammed open" code (348a).

I ended up taking the car to a local BMW shop for them to run some diagnostics and figure out the deal. They changed the thermostat, but the issue was not resolved. They checked the coolant temp sensor, it was good. The wiring and ecu and other modules are fine. All the parameters and diagnostic checks are normal. We decided to take the CSF radiator out and reinstall the stock radiator to see if it was a radiator related issue. Presto, everything has been back to normal and no problems once the stock radiator went back in.

And please don't tell me "its your water pump". We've tested it and it is fine as well. Hence why I've been driving it with the stock radiator back in and had no problems for a couple hundred miles now.

Any thoughts? Has anyone else installed the CSF radiator on a stock car with no tune and had any problems?
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      02-28-2019, 05:34 PM   #2
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I run a CSF radiator in my track-dedicated 135i N54, and ran one on my E90 N54, both with WAY better cooling than stock.
I would get on the phone with CSF before talking to anyone here, as they stand behind their product 100%.
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      02-28-2019, 05:39 PM   #3
mKilgore
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Thanks berns. Unfortunately CSF doesn't care to talk to individual customers. I called them and they told me that they don't really provide technical support and I need to contact whoever the distributor was that I bought the radiator from, which was ECS. I even had the BMW shop call CSF and he got the same crap. Which the shop manager said he's gotten from them before. So I called ECS and they weren't much help either, told me it was the thermostat initially. After I called them back and said we went back to the stock radiator and the problem is no longer present, they said "oh, well yeah you need a tune to run the CSF radiator" but couldn't tell me which tune or which parameters needed to change. Thus, no offense to anyone here haha, but ya'll are a bit of a last resort to get some actual feedback to see if anyone else has had this problem.
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      02-28-2019, 07:20 PM   #4
berns
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At the end of the day, it's a piece of hardware. And unless there is some crazy leak and malfunction, it could very well be the odds that you didn't bleed the system correctly on the first run. It makes no real sense why this would happen. I know someone at CSF, I'll see if they can chime in.
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      03-01-2019, 01:45 AM   #5
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To piggyback onto Bern's comments, it's a hardware piece without any integrated sensors. The ECU has no idea that anything has changed in regards to your radiator.

My guess is that some other issue coincidentally popped up after your CSF radiator install. My CSF radiator has dramatically improved cooling and I haven't run into any issues.

Check electrical connections (wiring plugs for the temp gauge, electric fan, etc)
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      03-01-2019, 07:28 AM   #6
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Maybe the car was running too cool on the street and the DME thought the thermostat was stuck open? Just a thought...
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      03-01-2019, 08:32 AM   #7
mKilgore
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Ok, thanks for the input.
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      03-02-2019, 10:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mKilgore View Post
Ok, thanks for the input.
Hi - I was alerted to this by Berns - please email me directly, and I can troubleshoot this with you.

my name is Ravi, and I'm the owner.

ravidolwani@csfradiators.com

Also, sorry for the lack of quality customer service you experienced. We do have a lot of new people working in our customer service department, and there seems to be disconnect in what our customer service policy is and what they told you.
I'll clean that up on Monday when I'm back in the office.

I look forward to your email.

Thank you for your business, and we'll get you running COOL.
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      03-06-2019, 03:01 PM   #9
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Ravi will take care of you. I have been running the CSF rad on my 135i, street and race, for years without issue.
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      03-06-2019, 03:26 PM   #10
mKilgore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginger_Extract View Post
Ravi will take care of you. I have been running the CSF rad on my 135i, street and race, for years without issue.
Thanks, Ravi and I had a nice email exchange discussing the issues. After talking with him, the car and temps were running ok other than throwing the thermostat code. Apparently, after doing some more research, this is a problem occasionally seen when the outside temperature gets cold, like in the 30s or lower. I found a few threads discussing CSF radiators in e90s causing the thermostat jammed open code to be triggered, and often times it was in cold weather. Regardless, I'm getting the radiator reinstalled and will see if the warmer weather causes the same issues. I'll keep everyone updated just in case anyone runs across this issue in the future.
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      04-11-2019, 06:38 PM   #11
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Hey, just wanted to know if you got the radiator reinstalled and it is working well? Iím going to grab one soon for my steamy 1.
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      04-12-2019, 11:44 AM   #12
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I did end up reinstalling the CSF radiator. The car has been running fine, for the most part. I had a couple of days back in March where the air temperature dropped down to 45F or lower and the car would react the same way by throwing the "thermostat jammed open" code and the fan would kick on high. I started carrying my ODB-II scanner with me on those days and when it would happen, I would just pull over and reset the codes and it was back to normal.

Otherwise, now that it has warmed up around here (Tennessee), the car noticeably runs cooler and I haven't had any more codes. I am generally running around 200F coolant temp and 230-240F Oil temp. Just be aware that there is something funky with the cold air temperatures and the radiator causing the codes, but the engine is fine and just a reset of the code is all that needs to be done.
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      04-12-2019, 12:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mKilgore View Post
I did end up reinstalling the CSF radiator. The car has been running fine, for the most part. I had a couple of days back in March where the air temperature dropped down to 45F or lower and the car would react the same way by throwing the "thermostat jammed open" code and the fan would kick on high. I started carrying my ODB-II scanner with me on those days and when it would happen, I would just pull over and reset the codes and it was back to normal.

Otherwise, now that it has warmed up around here (Tennessee), the car noticeably runs cooler and I haven't had any more codes. I am generally running around 200F coolant temp and 230-240F Oil temp. Just be aware that there is something funky with the cold air temperatures and the radiator causing the codes, but the engine is fine and just a reset of the code is all that needs to be done.
Did you ever try simply blowing airflow to the radiator in the winter like trucks do with their large coolers?
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      04-12-2019, 04:42 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbnks2 View Post
Did you ever try simply blowing airflow to the radiator in the winter like trucks do with their large coolers?
Did you mean "blocking" airflow? No I did not try that since there is no easy way to put material in front of the radiator, short of blocking off the kidney grills. Unless you have a better idea?
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      04-15-2019, 09:00 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mKilgore View Post
Did you mean "blocking" airflow? No I did not try that since there is no easy way to put material in front of the radiator, short of blocking off the kidney grills. Unless you have a better idea?
I would think taping off the kidney grills would be the quickest and easiest solution.
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      04-15-2019, 12:53 PM   #16
mKilgore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbnks2 View Post
I would think taping off the kidney grills would be the quickest and easiest solution.
No, I never tried taping or blocking the kidney grills.
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      04-30-2019, 09:13 AM   #17
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Just installed the CSF radiator in my 2012 135, and ran a full track weekend without a single issue, including street driving several hours in sub 40 degree temperatures. No thermostat errors or anything.
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