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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 11-16-2012, 11:38 PM   #141
DStein
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlzRider View Post
newtuner, the 2nd to last picture you posted doesn't work and I am kind of curious about seeing it.

You said you planned on rebuilding your original starter. Is it just the carbon brushes that need replacing or is the commutator done as well? Does BMW even sell these parts? Just curous....

I had my starter replaced while I was under warranty. My symptom was a loud squeal for about a second right a startup. It would only do it when the motor was cold and it was more prone to occurring if the ambient temp. was colder.
This. I was hearing a noise for literally a second upon start-up on colder days. It's not a real high pitched squeal - almost a rattling sound. At least I think I've found the problem...

Brand New battery. I only get 1 click. Tried multiple keys. Won't jump start.

Update:

Wow... after reading through this thread I would just like to say jesus, **** my life.

Last edited by DStein; 11-17-2012 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:53 PM   #142
jeremy0000
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hmmm... I found this thread while searching for a DIY for a fuel filter swap. I did my starter about a year ago and removed the intake manifold. Funny, I did not find this thread when I searched a year ago. I'm an idiot...
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:56 PM   #143
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How was it removing the intake manifold? So many others have said it's a horror.
Do you regret doing it, and did you replace anything proactively when you had access under there?
You did not list your mileage.

Last edited by Stinger9; 11-24-2012 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 11-26-2012, 12:38 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by Stinger9 View Post
How was it removing the intake manifold? So many others have said it's a horror.
Do you regret doing it, and did you replace anything proactively when you had access under there?
You did not list your mileage.
Well,,, it actually wasn't that bad. It's a horror only in the sense that I had to remove the intake just to swap the starter, where on every other car I have worked on, the starter is a straight shot. But honestly its not too bad. There is one bolt on the bottom of the intake that has to be removed blind and it took a good solid hour just to locate it, but other than that pretty straight forward. Once its all out it looks overwhelming with all of the vacuum hoses and electrical connectors but putting it back together isn't difficult because they all have a pretty logical and obvious place to connect, and I am no expert.

I definitely do not regret it. I have a deeper appreciation for my car, for the reason being that I know it better. It may sound funny but with a BMW I think it is a bonding experience. I also gained more mechanical confidence, and in fact I would do it that way again if I had the time. It gave me an opportunity to have a better understanding of how it is built and how it functions. I didn't really replace anything proactively, basically because I needed to get it done ASAP, and I am not knowledgeable enough to know what to replace without researching. I replaced a couple of vacuum hoses that were pretty deteriorated but thats it.
The mileage was around 70,000 at the time.
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:11 PM   #145
alpine325coupe
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How did you guys get off the 8mm bolt on the starter solenoid? I do not want to remove my intake manifold, but the 8mm bolt is located on the passenger side of the solenoid and I'm having a hard time reaching it with a box wrench
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:25 PM   #146
Stinger9
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Starter from the top

Last edited by Stinger9; 05-08-2014 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:44 PM   #147
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Really helpful thread! Thanks much to all who contributed. I just finished mine. I have an 04 ZHP coupe with 6mt and after getting my courage up reading thru this, pulled the airbox, cabin filter assy, and water hoses to find a clear look at both starter bolts. Still a tough reach but with a 3/8" swivel head ratchet for the starter bolts and a few others for the electrical connections, it was loose. I snaked it out under the intake, past the throttle body and over the alternator. Never went under the car. Took a few (5!) hours but the new one is in and the car is back in service Could probably do this in two hours if i had to now. Thanks again averybody!
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Old 01-19-2013, 09:21 PM   #148
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Great feedback!
Never done this myself, so interesting to hear from real world experience.

If I ever go in, I'd do the crankshaft position sensor too.


2004 was a very good year for e46!

Last edited by Stinger9; 01-20-2013 at 08:27 PM.
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Old 01-20-2013, 08:12 PM   #149
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Good! One last comment was that since I has pulled the heater hoses, I had to bleed the cooling system. But... the heater hoses are connected high on the firewall, likely they nor the heater core lost much because when I removed the bleed screw, i heard some minor gurgling but found the coolant level to be just fine. I did go ahead and fill until the bleed screw hole ran without bubbles but that only took about a half-pint of distilled water. I let it idle for 20 or so minutes... no temp issue. Then I drove a good 30 minutes or so (showing off my new starter )... no issue. My only message here is that it caused no heartache to pull those hoses and it really clarified the view. Man I am glad to have my car back!
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Old 02-10-2013, 05:06 PM   #150
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First of i wanted to say thanks to everyone that has contributed to this DIY. Recently my car has been giving me problems and wont start. Turned key and nothing, no click but have all the power and good battery. Hooked up Pheake tool and got 27A4 code. Its calling out the DME interface so before i send the car to the stealership i am going to change the starter out first. Car is s 6 speed and when i went to go push start it nothing? But then ill let the car sit for an hour and starts right up? At this point im really confused so if anyone can help i appreciate it.
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Old 02-10-2013, 05:59 PM   #151
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You should be confused because if your car starts at all with the starter, there is no reason it won't start with a jump.
Car in first and ignition key turned on when you're doing this?
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:56 PM   #152
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alpine325coupe View Post
How did you guys get off the 8mm bolt on the starter solenoid? I do not want to remove my intake manifold, but the 8mm bolt is located on the passenger side of the solenoid and I'm having a hard time reaching it with a box wrench
I use an 8mm socket with an extension. You need to remove the throttle to see it and have room to do it.
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Old 02-10-2013, 09:02 PM   #153
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Originally Posted by alpine325coupe View Post
How did you guys get off the 8mm bolt on the starter solenoid? I do not want to remove my intake manifold, but the 8mm bolt is located on the passenger side of the solenoid and I'm having a hard time reaching it with a box wrench
But I thought it was on the driver's side?

Is it not as in this pic?

Last edited by Stinger9; 05-08-2014 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 02-11-2013, 07:50 AM   #154
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You should be confused because if your car starts at all with the starter, there is no reason it won't start with a jump.
Car in first and ignition key turned on when you're doing this?
yes car is in first and ignition on
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Old 02-13-2013, 04:32 PM   #155
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Bookmarked! THanks for the write up. Im gona have to do this soon and Im not looking forward to that day... Haha
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Old 02-19-2013, 11:53 AM   #156
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just got done with the starter change yesterday. thanks for the DIY
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Old 02-19-2013, 11:57 AM   #157
Stinger9
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How did it go?
What was the hardest part?
Should I be intimidated if I have to face this?
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:13 PM   #158
killahkay559
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stinger9
It really isnt that hard except trying to get the two bolts that hold the starter on. Once you break the torque with a 3/8 wrench then i would recommend using a 3/8 ratcheting wrench which made it easier to put remove and put back. Took about 4 hours and a 12 hr delay on the starter getting here but all in all it wasnt too bad. Also it didnt fix my problem and it looks like ill be taking the car to the stealer ship. At least i got a new starter on.
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Old 02-19-2013, 05:56 PM   #159
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Oh, no, that's not the happy ending I was hoping to hear!
So you still have erratic starting.
Could consider the ignition switch too.

Did we already make sure all your battery connections are solid, along with the postive cable tie-together at the drug bin?
And did you ever check your engine ground strap for good connections?
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Old 02-19-2013, 06:41 PM   #160
killahkay559
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i have checked my ground under the passenger side and it checked good. Took the battery out and put my wifes from a 328 in and did the same thing. Tested the battery and it tested good at the local autozone. NO CEL but still able to pull code with my pheak tool and it called out the DME. Im wondering if its the DME/EWS alignment since i havent drove the car for 2 months. I dont have an extra key so i cant say its not the key also. I really hate to take it to the dealer. The like has a mind of its own. Sometimes it will start no problem and other times no click but all electronics are on? Im really confused at this point.
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