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  1. As a lot of you know I have been trying to fix my overcooling issue due to a knackered gearbox heat exchanger, in the few months of owning my LCI 535d I have got through 7 heat exchangers, the thermostat design at some stage 5 or more years ago was replaced with cheap chinese thermostats that fail the 1st time they open putting you back in the same position you started off with. Behr make it for BMW, they also sell it under the Hella brand and it is the identical part as confirmed by Steve Hudson who runs the product development of Hella UK, feel free to phone him on 07860 895457 if you had one fail until the guy gets the bloody message! I had 3 Hella, then had to buy a BMW one for £200 that failed, I had BMW replace it under warranty twice and had to fight for that then they refunded me and left it on the car to wash their hands of the problem. They know the parts have a design flaw and choose to ignore it due to the car not having a temp display, if they did acknowledge the fault it would be a huge recall to sort it but they have no redesigned part to replace it with. As a last resort I tried a Nissens one, it turns out this was identical to the Trucktec part another guy fitted (yes it failed) and then I found it is the same as a cheap chinese one for £50 so the chance in a working replacement is 0% @Wabby pointed me in the direction of an inline thermostat to work around the problem, the part I used is a VAG part used for 12+ years in various cars from Golfs to the Audi R8. The stat needs to sit just after the heat exchanger to work. The parts needed are the stat, it is part number 4E0121113 and 2 27mm heavy duty spring clamps part number N 90687001 You can either call your local TPS and get genuine parts, the stat costs £26 or ebay it for £20 or £16 for a cheaper part, the clamps will be a couple of quid each, you will need coolant as well, I tend to lose 100-200ml as I clamp the pipes off. I use Irwin vice grips, a pair costs £8 at the moment at screwfix, great little tool and does a great job stopping coolant pissing out https://www.screwfix.com/p/irwin-quick-grip-6-mini-one-handed-bar-clamp/29139. To get at the pipe to fit the inline stat the car needs to have the front end jacked up on axle stands, the undertray removed. The engine cover off and the slam panel removed to expose the rad and charge pipe. Unscrew the cover on top of the rad, and remove it (5 torx screws) unplug the fan then underneath again pull the coolant pipe off the bottom of the fan shroud and clamp it off to stop coolant coming out the heat exchanger, unclip the charge pipe from the intercooler to the throttle body making sure you take the temp sensor wire off, you can then remove the charge pipe from below, if that pipe has oil on the outside you need new seals from BMW. With the charge pipe off you can lift the fan out from above. You now have room to work. The pipe we are going to fit the stat in is the one running down to the front of the heat exchanger, clamp it off as close to the top as possible then go under the car and pop the clip out so you can remove it, put a catch try under the car as coolant will come out when you pull it off, this is the view from above. You will be taking out 50mm, as it happens the width of a wide roll of masking tape as you can see. Offer up the new stat and make sure you are happy that it is far enough up so it doesn't touch the elbow fitting, I think I went up about 60-70mm, measure twice cut once or you will be spending £60 on a new pipe, once happy cut out the 50mm section. Time for a cuppa but fill the kettle up as you will need hot water to soften the pipe. Start with the small section that connects to the exchanger and heat it up, grab some neat coolant to act as lubricant. This is the stat pointing up, it has a direction arrow and the flow comes from the exchanger up to the T connector that take it to the water pump Get a 27mm clamp and put it over the metal band on the elbow so it is out the way and ready to slip up into place once the pipes on. It is not easy getting the pipe in so I suggest you initially push the stat in upside down as this will let you hold the main housing and not the removable part ( I managed to rotate the fitting and caused it to leak so I had to take the bastard off to put it back together), push it in with some coolant to help then set it aside for 5 minutes while you finish your cuppa. Once it has cooled down it will have expanded so you can pull it out and fit it the right way up then move the 27mm clamp over the fitting, at least you can do this step off the car. Now you can fit the other side to the other part of the pipe, you only need to do it once this time. Slip the 2nd 27mm clamp up the pipe and push the stat into the pipe, once it is all the way down check the elbow lines up with the exchanger, if not twist it from the top so you can use the housing as a grip and once happy slip the clamp over ( I used mole grips to expand the clamp) Now you can fit the pipe back to the exchanger and remove the clamps. Refit the fan (check it hooks on at the bottom or it will flap about and trash everything) and plug in the power, clean the charge pipe seals (or replace them) and lube with engine oil then refit the charge pipe and plug to the temp sensor. Now is a good time to remove all your tools and fire up the engine to check for leaks and top off the coolant, once happy carry on putting the car back together. Refit the top cover for the rad and 5 screws followed by the slam panel and engine cover, clip the pipe back into the fan shroud from under the car and check the pipe fittings are secure, double check everything then refit the undertray. Check the coolant level then you are finished and the next day with a cold engine. Credits to @Wabby and @Clavurion for pointing me in the right direction.

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