E46 Fanatics Forum banner
44801 - 44820 of 44838 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
Just did the much-maligned front end refresh. LCAs, sway bar end links, inner/outer tie rods, struts and mounts. Lemforder LCAs, who knows what for the sway bars/tie rods, Bilstein B4 struts, and Sachs mounts. The Sachs mounts actually have that little alignment knob. I'll be going to get a professional one, but the car goes straight!

I've owned like 5 E46s now, never got around to doing the front end refresh on any of them. Get around to doing the front end refresh. I can't believe how well the car drives now!

Harbor Freight sells a little $70 1/4" drive impact driver. It blasts through everything you can get at. Highly recommend it for the top strut mount nut, it'll spin it right on and off no problem. Also, most DIYs say the cheapo spring compressors won't work, they will. You'll have to align them precisely, and it's shady AF, but it'll do it.
 

· Premium Member
'02 330i 5MT
Joined
·
1,277 Posts
After first drive, and stalling 9x, the clutch is a monster to push in, and engages 1/2" off the floor. Im certain i put everything together right. But now its a violent jerky mess
When I first put in my new clutch, It was like this for the first 100 miles or so, then it started to get better. But don't beat on it for the first 500 miles of "city" driving.
The E46 clutch is self-adjusting, which is why it will get better.

Another way to help it adjust; go to an empty space, then go in reverse for 10-20 feet, then forward 10-20 feet. Repeat a few times. Try not to give the car much gas, just have it roll in gear.
You should notice a little improvement. This only helps on the E46 with a brand-new clutch.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
When I first put in my new clutch, It was like this for the first 100 miles or so, then it started to get better. But don't beat on it for the first 500 miles of "city" driving.
The E46 clutch is self-adjusting, which is why it will get better.

Another way to help it adjust; go to an empty space, then go in reverse for 10-20 feet, then forward 10-20 feet. Repeat a few times. Try not to give the car much gas, just have it roll in gear.
You should notice a little improvement. This only helps on the E46 with a brand-new clutch.
Ill give it a shot. Its got a solid flywheel and an unsprung sintered iron disc so i knew it was gonna be gnarley (had the same setup in my mini jcw, which was actually better than the Worn DMF) but damn its touchy.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
Today I went and bought a battery charger, and a power pack to boost in case of need. The one I had was too old and would not have her crank. Yes, battery almost dead.

So there it sits, all 52 pounds (or so) of it, being charged. It took minutes for the level to indicate 50%, tens of minutes for it to indicate less than 75%, and now it's been at less than 100 % for three hours at least (blinking green means less than 100% on that thing). I do know this about batteries: the last mile is the hardest to get to.

That makes it all the more obvious to me now that simply driving the car around is not enough to recharge it, unless for many, many hours.

While I was at it, I made it clear what the polarity is with an orange paint pen. Seems rather important, more so than just a slightly raised embossed "+" mark, black on black of all things. No covers present, which I'm not a fan of.

Before charging, I checked and it showed 12 volts. I mean the thing did work after all, so it should charge just fine.

The previous owner did not drive the car much and boosted it from time to time, he said, which I know is not great for the battery. I had no problems for two weeks (not driving daily though), but the cold is now here and I have no clue how old the battery is, though there is a serial number on it.

For now I'll be brave and charge it full, dump it back in, and have my new portable lithium battery pack at the ready. But I'm soon going to buy a fresh one from a mechanic who quoted 240 $ Canucky dollars. Canuckian Tire has a 94R battery for 300$ plus taxes... Yikes! They only list one for e46 325 Ci.

I drove the car and started it with no issues previously, but that was before it got much colder. So now I'm giving this battery the full treatment, I'll probably have the charger run a "Repair Mode" once it's fully charge. The manual says the process lasts 4 hours, and charging to full could be up to 12 hours, as estimated.

My claim to fame as a mechanic is I had engine theory in college when I studied aircraft fabrication for one semester. I also had a workshop class where, in a team of two, we took a part a 2-stroke engine, examined it thoroughly, bore, clearance, shaft wear (looking for cracks, super important when flying high-powered four-bangers at high RPM)... Reassemble it, torque the screws to spec, put oil in it, gas, pull the crank and put-put-put, the damn thing came alive first time. We were so proud. I also had classes in elecrticity and some basic electronics, so here we go.

But, I'm still a weekend mechanic, no mistake. It took me a bit of courage to take out the battery, the car is parked in the street, and I know the theory. I love this car and I'll be sad if I mess it up, but there is not much for me to mess up here. Eventually I'll get the Bentley repair manual and learn to change oil, radiator fluid, and probably replacing the engine cover gasket (including the spark plugs gasket while I'd be in there). Watching Sreten on Youtube is also an inspiration (https://www.youtube.com/@M539Restorations) and helps with tips and tricks.

There's a lot I would love to do to my e46 to make it as shiny and healthy as possible. That is it for this weekend though. I can't wait to make my e46 roar again.

Light Electrical wiring Circuit component Electronic instrument Gadget
 

· Registered
Joined
·
672 Posts
just this year, replaced....
engine mounts
radiator (engine mounts broke and engine torque broke radiator)
ex tank
hoses
manual swap
rear bearings and a rear hub
full H&R sport cup kit suspension
214,000 miles still runs strong and reliable
 

· Registered
2003 325i & 2003 330i
Joined
·
12 Posts
Took advantage of the sunny (but cold) weather and wrenched on the 330i:
  • Replaced 5-year old dead Bosch battery with a Super Start Platinum 49 H8 from O'Reilly's. ($239! Ouch)
  • Replaced passenger side A-pillar trim I broke when replacing the sunroof cassette a couple months ago.
  • Replaced my valve cover (intended to replace just the gasket and grommets, but after 70k original miles and 20 years of heat cycles, the old gasket with '02 date code was completely plastic and baked onto the cover). It had been leaking badly and now I completely understand why. Note that I paid $535 from the local dealership who had the part in stock. Counter price was quoted $727 but buying it from them online and picking up same day was $535. :rolleyes: Also replaced the washers which are also ridiculously expensive for what they are. I will sleep tonight only because my local indy had quoted me $1,232 to do the valve cover job when I had a PPI done. An expensive day, but nowhere near as expensive as having someone else do it.
  • Replaced original spark plugs with NGK (it appears they were NGK from the factory as well).
 
44801 - 44820 of 44838 Posts
Top