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So, I went in to get my car aligned today and they told me that I need new front control arm bushings. I was told this a while ago, but they are now saying that without them the car will not keep it's alignment and the tires will wear fast.

My questions are:
a) is the above true?
b) how important are they really?
c) how tough of a DIY is this? I'm not an experienced mechanic by any means, but I can change my own oil. :) Should I just pay to get these done or is something worth trying?

Thanks!
 

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So, I went in to get my car aligned today and they told me that I need new front control arm bushings. I was told this a while ago, but they are now saying that without them the car will not keep it's alignment and the tires will wear fast.

My questions are:
a) is the above true?
b) how important are they really?
c) how tough of a DIY is this? I'm not an experienced mechanic by any means, but I can change my own oil. :) Should I just pay to get these done or is something worth trying?

Thanks!
a) yes
b) very
They are responsible for keeping the rear of the control arm in place and when worn allow the entire front suspension to shift around to different angles every time a bump is hit.
 

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c) you can do it! I got the part for like $60 on eBay (brackets with the bushings installed). Search there is plenty of info here on how to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
c) you can do it! I got the part for like $60 on eBay (brackets with the bushings installed). Search there is plenty of info here on how to do it.
I looked at all the DIY's and they explain it very well....I'm a little worried about removing the bushings from the control arm and the bushings from the carrier...sounds like it gets a little tricky! What was your experience with that part?
 

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I just did this on mine. I did not buy off ebay just a regular store and the parts were $110. the shop wanted $350 to do it. it took me about 3-4 hours. if you are mechanically inclined at all, I say DIY for sure. no regrets, but kind of a pain to put back on.
 

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I looked at all the DIY's and they explain it very well....I'm a little worried about removing the bushings from the control arm and the bushings from the carrier...sounds like it gets a little tricky! What was your experience with that part?
I bought the bushing with the it already in the carrier. 2 bolts drop it out put the new one in. you do not need to press the old one out and the new one in.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I bought the bushing with the it already in the carrier. 2 bolts drop it out put the new one in. you do not need to press the old one out and the new one in.
Please forgive my ignorance, as I'm new to the bushings!

The bushings themselves consist of the metal holding and the rubber inner part (can you tell how mechanical I am?!), right? And these attach to the control arm. So, what you purchased was the bushings (metal and rubber part)? Which didn't require any super special tools or anything?
 

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Just an FYI from experience, I bought the "OEM" bushings from BAS and they only lasted 1500 miles and were in worse shape than the originals. I then bought Meyle from Reuben at desert auto works (or whatever) and now 3500 miles in they are still fine. Basically what I am saying is that choose quality so you only have to do it once.
 

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Just an FYI from experience, I bought the "OEM" bushings from BAS and they only lasted 1500 miles and were in worse shape than the originals. I then bought Meyle from Reuben at desert auto works (or whatever) and now 3500 miles in they are still fine. Basically what I am saying is that choose quality so you only have to do it once.
Agree , standard bushings are sadly ****, get a pair of "deluxe" ones.

UUC is a favorite company of mine so here's theirs :)
http://www.uucmotorwerks.com/FCAB/
 

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I looked at all the DIY's and they explain it very well....I'm a little worried about removing the bushings from the control arm and the bushings from the carrier...sounds like it gets a little tricky! What was your experience with that part?
Make sure you use a 3-way puller to remove them from the control arm, it should be easy. As for the removal of the actual bushing (i.e. rubber part) from the bracket (i.e. metal part) I can't say much. I believe I've read here that you need some special tool to get the new bushings pressed in, that's why I bought the whole part (bracket with the bushing already pressed in) to avoid this potential PITA.
 

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You may also want to think about getting your control arms replaced as well as your control arm bushings. There are two ball joints in the control arm that wear about as fast as the control arm bushings themselves. While these don't affect alignments as much, they are still critical and you might as well replace them while you are under there.

However, the control arms are much much more difficult to replace than just the control arm bushings.
 

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Please forgive my ignorance, as I'm new to the bushings!

The bushings themselves consist of the metal holding and the rubber inner part (can you tell how mechanical I am?!), right? And these attach to the control arm. So, what you purchased was the bushings (metal and rubber part)? Which didn't require any super special tools or anything?
no worries at all. I have got a lot of useful information on this website.
this is what I ordered so you can see exactly. http://www.turnermotorsport.com/html/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=31126757623

I did not need a special tool to get mine off, but you might need to depending on how bad the old one is stuck on. you may need a special tool to get it back on though. I did it the hard way and used a dead blow rubber hammer to get the new one back on. that was the hard part. the rest of it was very easy.
 

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Freeze,
I am about as mechanically inclined as you stated yourself to be. I had to choose whether to change the bushings or the whole arm AND bushing and whether or not I could do it myself. I did extensive research to determine which way to go. Since I bought my car used and saw potential for having to do the ball joints later (pressed into the arms) I decided to buy Meyle HD arms and bushings together and install everything all at once. Materials were close to $400 (Ruben at DesertMotorWorks) and my labor was about 3.5 hours. Looking back 1500 miles later I think I made the right choice. I learned a lot about this area of the car in the process too. I now have confidence to do other DIY's within certain limits.

BE CERTAIN that you have the "pickle fork" (ball joint seperator) as described in most DIY's. That pickle fork and my 3 lb hammer were the hands down All-Stars of my project. Don't underestimate how hard you have to hit that sucker to make the old balljoints break loose. Putting the new one on is a piece of cake. Make sure you have a rubber mallet to get the bushing onto the new arm (bushing and bracket will be prepressed for your convenience). A little soapy water to lube it up and you should be ok. Finish it off with a trip to your preferred shop for alignment.

By the way, search for the other required tools such as the metric wrench sizes. Sockets work for some of the job. Do yourself a favor and get most of the tighter stuff with pivoting and wratcheting wrenches.

Good luck! And if everything goes to sh** during your project, E46Fanatics members are always here with additional advice.
 

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Just got this done to mine on Monday $50 ( I LOVE my CPO) :woot:
 

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Anybody can give me tips on how to use the 3 way jaw puller? I went to my hardware store and cant figure how its suppose to pull the rubber out. Unless I was looking at the wrong item.

cheers
 

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I saw the exact tool I saw yesterday and couldnt figure how to use it. What do u attach the jaws to?

Cant I just use a C-clamp to pop the bushings out?

cheers
The jaws attach to the bushing that will still be stuck on the control arm. You place the 3 arms around the bushing and then turn the other end (like a C-Clamp). It pulls the bushing right off the control arm.

Yes, you could use a small C-clamp, I wouldn't recommend it. It is more difficult and you have to be extremely careful not to damage the control arm.
 
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