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After reading thru this excellent post I just went out and jacked up my 1999 328i w/sport suspension to check the control arm bushings for wear. I have about 53K miles on it since purchased new in '99. What I noticed was that when the front wheel is shaken back and forth there is about 1/4" of side-to-side play in the rubber bushing. What is normal? There is no external visual sign of wear of failure in the rubber.
For the last 10K miles I have noticed a kind of "bumpsteer" when going over rough roads that I didn't have before. I was attributing this to degrading tire wear from the Bridgestone Pole Position SO-3 tires. On smooth surfaces I do not notice any handling differences. The car takes a firm set and tracks nicely.
So, I'm wondering what is "normal" and how do you tell when the bushing need replacement. Or have I already answered my own question? The pixs and descriptions here give me a lot of confidence that if they ought to be replaced then the aftermarket polyurethane bushing are the only way to go.

Would appreciate your advice and comment.

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