Technical Torque Lim 512 - Track Limp Mode Mystery Solved

berns

Corporal
Jan 15, 2018
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'09 135i
I've been tracking my 135i for about a year now, and living in California means some days are unbearably hot. I've gone to great lengths to keep my N54 cool, and in most >90* a, I can run a full 15-20 minute session without an issue. I've seen a lot of threads and complaints of this mystery problem, and have contributed to some of them as well, but nobody has been able to figure it out or record the event with any significant data, until now (I think?).

First off, I just want to thank Ken @WedgePerformance for absolutely kicking ass in delivering an awesome 91-octane track tune. His response time, enthusiasm and willingness to chat and explain is awesome. Beyond that, Ken made himself available for me when I needed him most: At the track yesterday for Global Time Attack Round 3 at Buttonwillow Raceway. Unfortunately, with 104* ambient temps, my car had about 1 lap or less in it before the dreaded rolling limp mode occurred, but I was finally logging at this moment to record it.

Despite my best efforts on the cooling system, my temps were all too high. The worst of the three (Oil, Water, IAT) was the coolant, seeing a high of 245*. This is a stock turbo car running about 15psi with full bolt ons, including stock location silicone inlets.

Cooling Modifications:
CSF Radiator (BMW coolant / distilled water 50/50 mix with Water Wetter)
VRSF 7.5" Race Intercooler
Custom twin Setrab 19-row oil cooler setup, thermostat removed (Red Line 10w40)

You can see below; with coolant temps above 240*, Tq Lim 512 activates to save the motor, pulling timing and providing a a max of 2-3psi.

AJZ9rqYl.jpg


Ken and I are going to work on some cooling table adjustments still, but in the meantime, I've got some work cut out if I want this car to handle abuse in high heat. I don't expect to be able to run full sessions on these shitty 100*+ days, but even another 2 laps would have been the difference for me in breaking my personal best time and placing well at the race. On 3 specific clean laps, with predictive lap times that would have put me on the podium, I made it to the last turn getting onto the front straight, went for the throttle and BAM, no power. It was pretty heartbreaking but this is racing and I came home with valuable data to hopefully avoid this happening again.

Next for the car will be a revisit to the radiator. I'll start with 100% distilled water and water wetter. I'll also be adding a center hood vent from Trackspec Motorsports to start getting some more heat out with a ton of added flow above the core. I'm going to replace my two 19-row Setrab Oil Coolers with two larger 25-rows instead. The VRSF intercooler will stay for now, but I do wonder at what point the intercooler density has a negative impact on flow to the radiator... It's all a sliding scale, gain in one area, lose in another. I think some water/meth injection would be a nice addition, too, just for cooling properties, but I'm not into adding extra pumps, fluids and more weight, so that'll be last.

Hope this is helpful to some of you.
-Alex

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Davidwarren

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Nov 6, 2016
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I run two setrab 625s in series. I’ve stayed around 250ish on track, but not in 100+ temps. I run an improved racing 185 oil thermo. I also run the CSF radiator, but run straight distillled with a bottle of WW. That helps a lot, and you get rid of a car with coolant on track, which is good.
 

berns

Corporal
Jan 15, 2018
175
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'09 135i
I run two setrab 625s in series. I’ve stayed around 250ish on track, but not in 100+ temps. I run an improved racing 185 oil thermo. I also run the CSF radiator, but run straight distillled with a bottle of WW. That helps a lot, and you get rid of a car with coolant on track, which is good.

Yeah, I'll start with the coolant removal. My oil temps don't seem to go above 260 on hot days. Here's my setup.

r17C3x9l.jpg


oe6pODjl.jpg


Eb1DKXzl.jpg
 
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rac

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Nov 14, 2016
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Australia
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135i ST
Does it ever hit freezing temperatures where you live? Glycol is really bad for heat transfer, big difference dropping anti freeze and just running a corrosion inhibitor imo. Noticeable even for daily driving.
 

frontside0815

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Nov 9, 2016
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Germany
I still think, it´s not because of your Water Temperatures...
I am 100% sure i Hit 115 ° C Water Temperature and did not have a Problem. But i also had this "limp Mode" without any ECL when it was really hot on the outside (didn´t had it before).

I will try coding out power cutting because of break overheating (which isn´t measured and only relied on different Parameters)...

Excited to see, what you find out, because like i replied in your other thread, i also had the Problem last trackday and it reaaaaally sucks!
 

MDORPHN

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Jan 28, 2018
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BMW 1M
Component protection mode is triggered when coolant hits 242F.

As other have mentioned, go with distilled water with water wetter.

I'm also running a larger aftermarket coolant radiator with improved ducting (in addition to an 32-row Setrab exhanger for oil). I'm also about to add additional vents to my hood and have just had my MOTIV manifold, turbine housing, and downpipes ceramic coated (Swaintech White Lightning).

Finally, when on track I run the water pump in MHD's track mode.

Neil
 

berns

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Jan 15, 2018
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You can also run the auxiliary 1M/PPK radiator on the driver's side for additional cooling capacity

I'm confident the water temp can be controlled with a single radiator. Also, my drivers side is taken up by my second oil cooler right now.

I still think, it´s not because of your Water Temperatures...
I am 100% sure i Hit 115 ° C Water Temperature and did not have a Problem. But i also had this "limp Mode" without any ECL when it was really hot on the outside (didn´t had it before).

I will try coding out power cutting because of break overheating (which isn´t measured and only relied on different Parameters)...

Excited to see, what you find out, because like i replied in your other thread, i also had the Problem last trackday and it reaaaaally sucks!

This isn't the end-all issue for this car. There are SO many safety parameters coded in. I've removed all the basic ones, including catalyst overheating, brake overheating, e-diff, you name it. What I experienced here, and what is recorded in the logs, is due to coolant temp, 100%.

Component protection mode is triggered when coolant hits 242F.

As other have mentioned, go with distilled water with water wetter.

I'm also running a larger aftermarket coolant radiator with improved ducting (in addition to an 32-row Setrab exhanger for oil). I'm also about to add additional vents to my hood and have just had my MOTIV manifold, turbine housing, and downpipes ceramic coated (Swaintech White Lightning).

Finally, when on track I run the water pump in MHD's track mode.

Neil

I actually think heat management is probably way easier with a reasonably sized single turbo, even at a higher power level. Would love to see more of your setup. My MHD had the water pump in track mode for this, didn't have any impact.
What intercooler are you running?

Also, a well-made tube and fin radiator would allow a lot more airflow into the radiator than your typical dense bar and plate core would...

The CSF radiator I run is tube and fin.
 
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berns

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Jan 15, 2018
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You went to Speed district this weekend? I wanted to come in the M4 but opted out because it was too hot :(.

Speed District was running the same day GTA was, just with about 100x more track time. Not that I could have used it. My tires were too scrubbed for this event anyway. Here's my left front tire at the end of the day. Happy I made it home on it...

MJC6NzNl.jpg


I apologize for the typo, I said radiator when I really meant to say INTERCOOLER! :)

Are you running a tube and fin intercooler? They can be lighter, but they're a lot more prone to leaking and way more susceptible to damage in a front-mount application.
 

V8bait

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Nov 2, 2016
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You can have this limiter when it's too cold/ not warmed up too, and ive seen it a few other times. It's a pain in the ass limiter it it's popping up when it shouldn't.
 
Jan 31, 2017
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Are you running a tube and fin intercooler? They can be lighter, but they're a lot more prone to leaking and way more susceptible to damage in a front-mount application.

No I am not, ordered a Phoenix race intercooler for my build. Keep in mind that all the high performance air to air OEM designs I can think of use tube and fin cores, so I'm not so sure I buy into the whole fragile spiel so-often repeated on the internet...
 

berns

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Jan 15, 2018
175
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'09 135i
You can have this limiter when it's too cold/ not warmed up too, and ive seen it a few other times. It's a pain in the ass limiter it it's popping up when it shouldn't.

Ah, didn't know about that, but the car was definitely warmed up.. too warm. It is a huge pain in the ass, but at the end of the day, I'm glad it popped up and ruined my lap instead of my motor. Will be cool to make some changes and get back out there to test again. Not easy making the N54 track-worthy in heat.

No I am not, ordered a Phoenix race intercooler for my build. Keep in mind that all the high performance air to air OEM designs I can think of use tube and fin cores, so I'm not so sure I buy into the whole fragile spiel so-often repeated on the internet...

I'm all for weight savings and better flow. Haven't looked much into getting a tube and fin intercooler, but the VRSF unit weighs 37lbs and the stock one weighs 8.
 

jyamona

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Nov 7, 2016
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@berns you should ask Jake H what all was done on the Motiv 1M track car, that thing never has any cooling issues as far as I know.
 

berns

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Jan 15, 2018
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'09 135i
@berns you should ask Jake H what all was done on the Motiv 1M track car, that thing never has any cooling issues as far as I know.

I'd love to know. I also really do feel that running a proper single would help a ton with temperatures.
 
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Jan 31, 2017
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I'd love to know. I also really do feel that running a proper single would help a ton with temperatures.

What makes you think so? I don't think backpressure has a very strong effect on heat rejection into the coolant, + the coolant feed line into the block runs a lot closer to the turbo hotside on a bottom-mount single than it does with a stock-location TT setup...