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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 01-27-2013, 10:05 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Stafford VA
Posts: 5
My Ride: 2004 BMW 330xi
Question Which Manual Should I get?

Hey Guys.
I just got my very first BMW and its a 2004 330XI.
I plan to be a do it yourself BMW owner for most repair jobs, can you recommend any repair manuals to me? I am a decent wrench turner, but so far have only worked on american made trucks, not german supercars .

Any help would be appreciated, thanks!!


This one looks like it might be a good choice, but it also says z4 and Im worried it wont include anything about the AWD system.


this one also looks decent, but with this one my fear is that it doesnt teach you how to actually repair stuff, just how to diagnose so you can tell your mechanic whats wrong._a_
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:28 AM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston
Posts: 4,971
My Ride: 2003 325xi
Get the Bentley, not the Haynes. I have access to a Bentley but never use it. The xi specific info is rather incomplete or just wrong in a lot of places.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:52 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 411
My Ride: 2005 330XI
I bought the Bentley for $89.99 on bavauto.com. Waste of money in my opinion. you can find what you need on the internet or this site really, no need for the book for XI specifically. It isn't helping me with my transfer case bushing replacement, it isn't helping me with some A/C hoses I need to replace. It didn't help me with my cooant system refresh. I didn't have it when I did my vanos seal refresh, and didn't need it, nor now having it looking at it would it have helped me do that job.

THe book is neat in that you can find little tidbits of info here and there, not worth the price IMHO.

Last edited by caleb6; 01-28-2013 at 11:55 AM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:03 PM   #4
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: NJ
Posts: 23,732
My Ride: '99 328i 300K miles
Every page of my Bentley has grease on it...I'm often using it to give guys torque values for things...even though I don't believe in torque...that's just for girls.

But, that said, I have learned almost all I've needed from this place alone over the last few years...almost. The wiring diagrams in Bentley are helpful, and so are lots of the instructions for getting to things.
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:55 PM   #5
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Location: Washington (the state)
Posts: 1,689
My Ride: 2003 325xi
I use a combo of Bentley and TIS data. TIS is a "dealer" computer based reference listing procedures and how-to instructions including diagrams. The CD is available through several sources including Ebay. Beware of legal issues with free downloading. The Haynes are usually wrong about so many things when you need help. But for basic stuff they may work. I got my used Bentley for $25 shipped from a member here who sold his car. Well worth that price, the thing is like a phonebook in size. I've used it to look up plenty of stuff so yeah, I'd say it's worthy.
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Old 01-28-2013, 09:58 PM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Woodbury, MN
Posts: 91
My Ride: 02 330xi
Bentley, done deal.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:12 PM   #7
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 495
My Ride: 323Ci, 325xi
must peeps around here use bentley.
I just follow whatever knowledge they may bestow upon me haha
8 new from $88.12 10 used from $129.95
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330xi, do it yourself, manual, repair manual

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