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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 05-02-2015, 07:11 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by seaniekaye View Post
I am concerned about getting these apart... I need to take this all out to get to my guibo and center bearing. Despite all the praise for pb blaster, I think this could be a disaster.

They look in a very good shape despite all that rust buildup. Use rotary brush to clean them up a bit, soak them, then use impact wrench (find an electric one you could borrow, DeWalt or IR).
Diagnosis - BMW...

Last edited by djdonis; 05-02-2015 at 07:12 PM.
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Old 05-05-2015, 06:22 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by nleeumd View Post
So I am in the process of doing this now (car is on jack stands). I have a e46 330ci. I already sheered off one of the four studs right below the nut. Is it correct to assume that If I 'sheer' off the remaining three studs below the nut, the pipe should seperate from the header flange? Then i should proceed with the drill out method?
It should come apart with no problem after all 4 bolts are off. Heat is your friend and as mentioned if you have it, an induction heater is an excellent way of heating. I was never able to generate enough heat with a MAPP torch. You pretty much have to heat the studs up to cherry red.

Just buy a high quality drill bit (or 2) and do everything you can to get a good flat surface on which to drill.
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Old 08-11-2015, 03:01 PM   #43
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At this point in the lifespan of an e46, would it not be safe to say that your original flange bolts are likely gone?

I live in California and have a very well-maintained 330ci. The bolts and nuts were toast. I tried to get one off and it sheared instantly (with overnight PB Blaster).

Best to just not waste time and just get a good exhaust shop to torch them out, replace the gaskets, and start well.
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Old 10-29-2016, 09:23 AM   #44
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I recently had to go through the painful experience of drilling out the exhaust studs and just wanted to add to this thread. I decided to go this route as I didn't want to take the chance of an exhaust shop torching / impact hammering them out and potentially ruining the 02 sensors.

If you plan to drill, the easiest way to do this is cut the exhaust studs flush with the manifold so as to minimize the drilling distance. Do not drill all the way through. Drill until there is about 3-5mm of stud remaining at the end and use a round punch with a hammer to tap them out. At this point the stud with the head and whatever material there is remaining should fall out pretty easily. I've had good luck using a 23/64 Chicago latrobe 550 series drill bit (can be bought at grainger) for this job and found cheaper cobalt drill bits purchased at a regular hardware store just weren't up to the task for drilling these hardened studs out. Take your time, it should take about 45min of slow drilling per stud to get them out.

Photo of how the studs should look like after drilling and tapping them out:

Last edited by Streetthispgt; 10-29-2016 at 09:29 AM.
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broken, exhaust, exhaust bolts, header bolts, stuck

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