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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 11-11-2012, 03:21 PM   #1
Newman513
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Tool Kits / DIY Things to buy for E46?

With the holiday sales coming up in all the stores this season, it seems like quite a few tools / packages are going to be on sale.

I just got a 325xiT with 119k on it, but I don't really have any tools to do a lot of the DIY/ basic maintenance I'd like to do on it. I know Sears is having a Veteran's Day sale tomorrow, and thus I could get some Craftsman tools for cheap, but is there anything out there I should really be considering?

I've found these things so far. I'm pretty dead set on the jack combo kit, but are there any community recommended tool kits?

http://www.craftsman.com/craftsman-3...5&blockType=L5

http://www.craftsman.com/craftsman-1...4&blockType=L4

http://www.craftsman.com/shc/s/p_101...2_00936260000P

http://www.harborfreight.com/hand-to...kit-45951.html

I know I should get a torque wrench or two as well, but does one of these work, or should I get an electric one?

http://www.sears.com/craftsman-1-2-i...&blockType=G11

Thanks for all the help in advance.
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Old 11-11-2012, 03:51 PM   #2
evo7
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For a floor jack, I would head over to Costco and get that red 2.5 ton for about $99. Excellent low profile jack for the price. Downside is, it's very heavy. If Costco doesnt have it, then this http://www.harborfreight.com/floor-j...eel-68049.html floor jack from HF is a good deal. Pick up some jackstands while youre there.

As for tools set, dont bother with HF tools set. Sears usually have great deals on Craftsman tools set around this time. Lowes is going to have the Kobalt 227pc set for $99 this Black Friday. I might pick one up myself if there is a huge line.

As for torque wrench, that beam style will work fine, although its a bit old school. But its accurate, thats what matter. I love to get an electric wrench myself, but its damn expensive.
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:15 PM   #3
Newman513
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Alright, that's some good info. Is there anything I should buy specifically/ look out for? I'm not really looking for exact tools right now, but what should one of these tool kits have if I'm going to be using it on a BMW?
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:18 PM   #4
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Get a torx bit set. Many DIY's involve torx screws.
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Old 11-11-2012, 05:06 PM   #5
Johal E32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evo7 View Post
For a floor jack, I would head over to Costco and get that red 2.5 ton for about $99. Excellent low profile jack for the price. Downside is, it's very heavy. If Costco doesnt have it, then this http://www.harborfreight.com/floor-j...eel-68049.html floor jack from HF is a good deal. Pick up some jackstands while youre there.

As for tools set, dont bother with HF tools set. Sears usually have great deals on Craftsman tools set around this time. Lowes is going to have the Kobalt 227pc set for $99 this Black Friday. I might pick one up myself if there is a huge line.

As for torque wrench, that beam style will work fine, although its a bit old school. But its accurate, thats what matter. I love to get an electric wrench myself, but its damn expensive.
The red Costco jack is amazing. I love it, and would buy one again. I really wish it was just a bit lighter. Even 15-20 lbs would make all the difference.
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Old 11-11-2012, 06:58 PM   #6
love2drive330CI
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If you have Advanceautoparts store in your area. They have a sale going on(ends today) online where you can save %20 and if you spend $100 you will get a coupon for $50 off your next $100.

$70 free stuff.

I didn't look at your links but I can think of 32mm wrench(can't remember the name of the item right up front of engine???) and a/or adjustable wrench big enough to open oil cap.
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Old 11-11-2012, 06:59 PM   #7
love2drive330CI
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If you have Advanceautoparts store in your area. They have a sale going on(ends today) online where you can save %20 and if you spend $100 you will get a coupon for $50 off your next $100.

$70 free stuff.

I didn't look at your links but I can think of 32mm wrench(can't remember the name of the item right up front of engine???--and fan if you automatic) and a/or adjustable wrench big enough to open oil cap.
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Old 11-12-2012, 08:47 AM   #8
Newman513
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Quote:
Originally Posted by love2drive330CI View Post
If you have Advanceautoparts store in your area. They have a sale going on(ends today) online where you can save %20 and if you spend $100 you will get a coupon for $50 off your next $100.

$70 free stuff.

I didn't look at your links but I can think of 32mm wrench(can't remember the name of the item right up front of engine???--and fan if you automatic) and a/or adjustable wrench big enough to open oil cap.
Missed that sale...

And no, I have a 5 speed.
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Old 11-12-2012, 09:31 AM   #9
WDE46
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You just need a 10-100 ft*lb torque wrench and a 20-250 in*lb wrench also (micrometer type, a good medium b/w beam and elctronic). You need a metric combination wrench set, though I just pieced one together. There are some larger sizes that don't come in most sets. You need a 34mm crowsfoot for tierods if you do those. Get a 17mm deep socket for your wheel lugs. A 36mm socket for the oil filter housing. Various length phillips and flathead screwdrivers. Also, pick up a good socket set. You will want torx sockets as well (at least up to T50 in size). You will want several extensions for your sockets. I would get 2 feet worth. A really long flathead is helpful sometimes for various tasks (nothing specific). Get a extendable magnetic wand (a lifesaver). You need a metric hex socket set too. Also, a trim removal kit is helpful for the interior. I got the 5 piece kit from Harbor Freight and it really helped yesterday when I took out the whole trunk area lining.

I would not recommend the craftsman jack you have shown. I would get one that goes lower. Minimum saddle height needs to be less than 4 inches. Maximum height of at least 16 inches (if you use a creeper, you'll want higher). You should get a jack pad adapter from somewhere like ECS Tuning, Bimmer world, or maybe there are some on Ebay. It'll make lifting your car much easier. Also, make sure your car has all the jackpads. If it doesn't, replace them.

That's pretty much all I have. I've been able to do everything with those tools, minus the RTABS for which I bought a special tool.

I forgot to add that it really helps to have all manner of socket adapters available. 1/2 to 3/8, 3/8 to 1/4, 1/4 to 3/8, 3/8 to 1/2. This will ensure that you can use all of your sockets with any one of your ratchets. Just be careful not to put too much load on the ones that downsize...

Last edited by WDE46; 11-12-2012 at 09:40 AM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:35 PM   #10
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Does anyone know of a jack stand set that has heads that fit in the little rubber jack points under the car? I don't like how I have to awkwardly span my stands over one side of the edge of the rubber. If that makes any sense at all, haha.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:46 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halo0 View Post
Does anyone know of a jack stand set that has heads that fit in the little rubber jack points under the car? I don't like how I have to awkwardly span my stands over one side of the edge of the rubber. If that makes any sense at all, haha.
That's where the jack pad adapter comes in. You can use it on your jack, or mount a couple permanently on jack stands.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:55 PM   #12
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Wasn't aware those existed. However the ones I just found after googling it would be pretty much impossible to mount to any jack stand I'm aware of.
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:56 PM   #13
stevodotorg
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Go visit the Sears outlet website, their deals are better than the black friday deals coming up with sears.. if this engine swap doesn't kill me, I'll try to pick one up soon.

On a side note, can anyone recommend a good torque wrench at reasonable price?
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:46 PM   #14
lcoleman
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That 182 piece tool kit looks like the hot ticket. I would add a 36mm socket for the oil filter cap, and a 19mm wrench for odds-and-ends (I don't think that kit comes with one--mine didn't).

The $15 HF 1/2 drive torque wrench is more than good enough, just store it at 0 and don't use it to loosen anything, ever. Both of those actions will compromise the springs inside over time. They also wear out, so consider buying a new one every couple of years. Or, pay like $200 and get one that has to be sent off an calibrated, up to you.

Internal and external Torx drivers are good suggestions, I would do T20-T55 and E10-E14. A couple of hex drivers would also be a good idea. I think most if not all of the ones on these cars are 14 and 17mm.

No need for jack adapters imo, just line up the rubber in the middle of the stand. No need for pricey jack stands, HF ones are fine. The jack is up to you. I personally don't like all the "Rapid Pump" crap HF has now (hard to release them slowly), so the one at Costco is probably a good suggestion. I generally find that most of Sears' tools like jacks and such are overpriced, but Craftsman wrenches and hand tools are a good value.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:58 PM   #15
halo0
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I just checked out that one at Costco today. that thing is a beast! incredibly long reach and low. I don't think you can beat that for 99 bucks. Def going to pick one up soon.
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Last edited by halo0; 11-19-2012 at 09:59 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:05 PM   #16
WDE46
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I recently purchased a floor jack and jack stands from Harbor Freight.

This is the floor jack. I used it to lift my car today, and it worked very well. Perfect minimum and maximum heights. It is also light enough to be portable. The handle comes off and comes apart into two pieces. It easily fits in my trunk. Weighs 46 lbs.

http://www.harborfreight.com/automot...ump-68051.html

I got these jack stands. This is the item I would definitely recommend as a must buy. The saddles or seats on these stands work with our jack pads. You put them under the pad so it is perpendicular with the jack pad lengthwise (think + sign). They are very light and very stable. I'm buying another set to make 4. These are the only jack stands I have seen with a saddle this shallow, but maybe other people have some flat top ones.

http://www.harborfreight.com/automot...nds-91760.html

I would also recommend a jack pad adapter for the floor jack. I got the one from ECS tuning, though several other companies make a nearly identical product. It gives me 100% confidence when lifting from the jack pads.

http://www.ecstuning.com/Search/Jack...pter/ES251251/

Last edited by WDE46; 11-19-2012 at 10:08 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:36 PM   #17
ExitBuddy
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With respect to tools, after several days of comparing, I just purchased a Sears Craftsman tool set, #41309, 309 piece. It lists for $400, but this Friday, it will be on sale for $199. Join the Craftsman Club and the Ship Your Way (the free one, not the Ship Your Way MAX). It was on sale recently for the $199, then through the club membership, got another $35 off, for a landed price of $165. It practically has every metric socket available, plus all the standard/imperial sockets as well. where it differs from the 201 piece all metric tool set is the larger size sockets, from 23 mm to 36 mm are not included. But as others have stated, get the 36 mm from your favorite sears, auto parts or HF. Also, the all metric set rarely-on-sale price is $270, only $20 off list, but a full $100 more than best price for the 309. And you will need to buy a tool box, as the 309 piece doesn't come with one. Again, pick out your favorite. I got one for around $30.
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