E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > BMW Regional Forums > Regional Forums > Australia

Australia
Check out other E46Fanatics members rides in the Enthusist Directory!

If you don't have your garage setup, sign up today HERE

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rating: Thread Rating: 9 votes, 4.56 average. Display Modes
Old 04-03-2014, 09:50 PM   #1
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Bafffyyy's Progress Thread!

I figured since I'm relatively new to this whole car thing, I'd keep a somewhat log of what I intend to do with the car in terms of maintenance and mods, and hope people can correct me where I'm going wrong.

First off, the car I've picked up is an '03 325i Individual, last 7 VIN is FX62381. I chose this car in particular for two major reasons. The first of all being that it is Estoril Blue, which really strokes me the right way. Second being, my friend was an acquantaince of the the person that sold it to me. It was a bit on the high side of price (AUD prices considered even), but I felt as though it was worth it. Probably will end up going against that statement later on, but yeah. Pictures will come later tonight, since I'm procrastinating at work at the moment.

(Here's some of them): Click here!

Anyhow, a prepurchase inspection was done, and some things were highlighted.

- Bushings had some play
- Low coolant at the time of inspection
- Observable oil on engine, but owner said it was fixed it. (Further investigation was performed)
- Two Error Codes (P1620, P1020) First one indicates coolant issue/thermostat open? Second one MAF related.
- Slight leak in exhaust
- No Tranny leaks
- Engine Oil was also low
- Normal wear and tear i.e. brake discs were almost shot, brake pads relatively worn
- Some suspension knocking while swaying (presumably from the bushings?)

Took the car to a mechanic of a friend who owns an E46 M3, figured this would be the ideal course of action.

Things done on this first service/inspection:
- New tyres as old ones were worn out ~$700
- Rear Brake Rotors were machined.
- New rear brake pads.
- Oil leak investigated, and new O-rings/grommots were put on instead of VCG replacement (don't fix what ain't broke, I presume?)
- Fluids either replaced or topped up (not sure)

Anyhow, that's what was done first time around. I was informed that he had put LL04 ELF 5W-30 in, which is probably fine for the most part at the moment, but I still felt uneasy as I read that LL01 is definitely preferred for Australian delivered vehicles.

This weekend some stuff is going in, as I've bought parts from ClickableAutomotive (shoutout to them; they're offering prices pretty much on par with ECS shipped here!).

- Liqui-Moly Leichtlauf High Tech 5W-40
- Hengst Filters all around (Air, Cabin, Oil, Fuel)
- Bosch FGR7DQP+ Spark Plugs (I've read that these are fine to use and that many members here use them)

This is essentially where I'm up to now. I am aware that the cooling refresh needs to be done, and I'm intending to do that in the next few months. I would love to DIY, but I'm inadequately equipped, and don't exactly know where to start in this regard, so any help would be very well received. Furthermore, is this a good place to start to learn DIY?

Anyhow, my current road plan for the car is cooling refresh when it comes back in stock at Clickable (with the CoolXPert ET instead of Behr), then perhaps move on to brakes, then control arms/suspension.

Meyle HD controls/overhaul kit would probably be what I'm aiming for, as for suspension I'm not sure. I like the feel of the current ride, but I'm pretty open to anything different. Any advice on ideal parts for everything?

The only first little bit of DIY I can say I've done ... is really removing the black plastidip off the Style 68's. Not really much I know, but we all gotta start somewhere. I also intend to do oil changes and filter changes myself for the most part. As for the suspension/control arms/driveline related components, I'm not too sure.

Anyway, thanks for all the resources available, and thanks for any future advice that will come.
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!

Last edited by Bafffyyy; 05-12-2014 at 08:55 PM. Reason: title change
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 04-03-2014, 10:01 PM   #2
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
Good to see you hitting up the cooling. Plenty of Youtube videos on just about anything you can think of doing on this car. Is that a ZHP in a 325?
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2014, 10:04 PM   #3
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Thanks man.

No, it's just a 325i with the MSport package. US only gets the package I believe with ZHP 330's, but Euro and AU delivered cars get whatever they want optioned for the most part, or MSport/Sport pack levels of trim.

This might be a noobie question, but what set of tools would you recommend for starting DIYs and whatnot?
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2014, 10:25 PM   #4
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
are you a MT or AT? If AT you should pick up a set of fan removal tools. http://www.ebay.com/itm/BMW-32mm-Fan...7ebbc0&vxp=mtr do you have standard tools?

Torque Wrench/s
Breaker Bar
Ramps
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)

Last edited by KaktusJaque; 04-03-2014 at 10:26 PM.
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2014, 10:27 PM   #5
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
It's an AT, and unfortunately not. When I said I'm starting DIYs ... I should have mentioned that I'm literally starting from nothing. Aside from a lot of reading and watching videos, I have little to no experience. And note taken. How important/necessary do you think the electric fan swap is? Should I be doing it sooner rather than later?
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2014, 10:34 PM   #6
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
The electric fan swap is a good thing to do. If you keep up on your cooling system, you should be ok with not doing the swap, at least for now. Many here have already done this. Most all the DIYs on this car are for the most part easy, some are time consuming, but still easy. I usually watch plenty of Youtubes before I get into something I havent done before.

But you will need a set standard tools like
A ratchet set
Metric Sockets up to 17mm and some larger depending on your job at hand.
various screw drivers
Needle nose plyers
Metric Combination wrenches
An adjustable wrench
A set of Torx adapters for your ratchet

just to name a few.
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)

Last edited by KaktusJaque; 04-03-2014 at 10:37 PM.
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2014, 10:49 PM   #7
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Oh, a couple more questions for the moment. The car's at 116k kms (~72k miles). Anything I should be mindful of? And any specific brands should I look for in terms of tools? Or just buy a halfway decent/cheap set and replace as I go along?

EDIT: also the driver's side window regulator is on it's way out too, so that's on the list of things to do.
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!

Last edited by Bafffyyy; 04-03-2014 at 10:54 PM.
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2014, 06:54 AM   #8
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Just a small update to this; replaced air filter and cabin filter. Easy DIY, though the plastic pin rivets (pop rivets?) were a bit fidgety to get out. Hoorah for starting somewhere small
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-04-2014, 10:04 AM   #9
oldmortality
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Edinburgh
Posts: 8
My Ride: 330Ci convertible
Happy Motoring! I was new to BMW and any kind of mechanical work until late last year when I bought my 330 Vert. I have to say, it is extremely addictive!

My first foray involved a cooling refresh much like yourself as my thermostat was well gone; new belts, stat, tensioners/pulleys, and waterpump. It was really pretty straightforward and it is a good place to start. I have a manual though, so don't have to deal with all that crazy fan nonsense! Just make sure that if you do/don't do it, if your temp gauge ever starts to go hot switch off IMMEDIATELY. Not in a mile.

With the money saved I bought a torque wrench of adequate quality, and I really don't know what I'd do without it - even for peace of mind.

I haven't done anything overly difficult; VANOS seals, general service stuff, VCG, rear suspension, brakes, o2 sensors, intake boots... actually it starts to mount up! I need to do the Oil Filter Housing Gasket next.. I find myself sitting thinking about the next project. I love it. Sometimes you'll hate it. But it really is an adventure.

My advice would be the following:

Get INPA software on a laptop and a cable. Not sure where you'd source that in AUS, but it's been invaluable for me. Searching for it will lead you to a few guides. It's fun to play with and means you can diagnose things easily and quickly (sometimes).

If you need to replace sensors/FSR (Camshaft, crankshaft etc) buy OEM. Many dealers (at least here in the UK) will do discounts. Aftermarket is great for a lot of things, but not those (often).

All E46 cars now are getting pretty old. Rubber does not enjoy this; the more you can DIY the more hoses you can replace easily and cheaply. The front suspension (and the rear to an extent) and bushings are a weakish point, so get to know is what. Start to get to know your way around your car/engine and you'll learn a lot.

Don't run your fuel extremely low or you might kill your pump. They die a lot and rely on the fuel flow for cooling (afaik).
oldmortality is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 06:48 AM   #10
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Went to my mechanic today to check up on oil leak, and gonna leave the sparks/filters etc for approx 500km more. There's still a slight leak on one of the O-rings on the VCG. It's minor, so gonna go back later, see how it is, and probably replace the VCG along with the sparks filters etc. Just wanted to check up; the oil I've chosen (Liqui Moly 5W-40) is fine for use right? It's LL-01 on the bottle.

Anyhow, taking the car in for wheel balancing on Thursday since i blew the weights off when I was clearing all the plastidip off the rims. Hopefully all will be good with the oil.
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:00 AM   #11
ChuckyVee
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Woodway, Texas
Posts: 430
My Ride: 2000 323i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bafffyyy View Post
Oh, a couple more questions for the moment. The car's at 116k kms (~72k miles). Anything I should be mindful of? And any specific brands should I look for in terms of tools? Or just buy a halfway decent/cheap set and replace as I go along?

EDIT: also the driver's side window regulator is on it's way out too, so that's on the list of things to do.
On the subject of tools....and I may get flamed for this...I recommend picking up a nice "mechanics" set of Craftsman from Sears. These come in multiple configurations (from 150+ pieces all the way up to 700+).They usually go on sale a couple times a year and you can pick up a 250-350 piece set for a couple hundred bucks. These serve as great starter sets and usually include just about all the items you'll need. You'll still need to augment your set with a couple of torque wrenches though.

The reason I think I'll get flamed is because some folks call these tools "Crapsman". Sure, the quality is lesser when compared to Snap-On, Matco, or Mac...but IMO, for the average homeowner/DIY'er the quality is more than adequate. I recommend staying away from Chinese or Taiwanese stuff to build your set around.

That's my take on the tools...FWIW!
__________________
__________________


First Bimmer..."Miss December"...2000 323i, purchased Dec. 2013 w/82K on the clock. PM thus far...pads/rotors, belts/pulleys, complete CS overhaul, FCABs, plugs, autotranny filter change, ATF drain and fill, rear diff drain and fill. Emergency repairs...PS pump, turn signal stalk, CPS, Ignition Coil #2 cyl, electric aux fan.
ChuckyVee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:01 AM   #12
ChuckyVee
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Woodway, Texas
Posts: 430
My Ride: 2000 323i
Sorry...just noticed you're in OZ!

Not sure if Craftsman is available Down Under?
__________________


First Bimmer..."Miss December"...2000 323i, purchased Dec. 2013 w/82K on the clock. PM thus far...pads/rotors, belts/pulleys, complete CS overhaul, FCABs, plugs, autotranny filter change, ATF drain and fill, rear diff drain and fill. Emergency repairs...PS pump, turn signal stalk, CPS, Ignition Coil #2 cyl, electric aux fan.
ChuckyVee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:25 AM   #13
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckyVee View Post
On the subject of tools....and I may get flamed for this...I recommend picking up a nice "mechanics" set of Craftsman from Sears. I recommend staying away from Chinese or Taiwanese stuff to build your set around.
Craftmans are fine, wouldnt think you would get flamed for that, because many here go to Harbor Freight for ROC tools (Republic of China). Even though ROC may not be good quality, they do have some noteworty items. But for your standard set, Craftsman, Husky, Kobalt are are in the same class and are fine.
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)

Last edited by KaktusJaque; 04-05-2014 at 10:25 AM.
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 12:08 PM   #14
ChuckyVee
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Woodway, Texas
Posts: 430
My Ride: 2000 323i
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaktusJaque View Post
Craftmans are fine, wouldnt think you would get flamed for that, because many here go to Harbor Freight for ROC tools (Republic of China). Even though ROC may not be good quality, they do have some noteworty items. But for your standard set, Craftsman, Husky, Kobalt are are in the same class and are fine.
LOL...well, that's great! I wasn't sure how Craftsman would be received here. I'm on a couple of motorcycle forums (European makes) and those guys are tool snobs!

And I agree...I use HF all the time for stuff that's not dependent on tight tolerances like breaker bars, pry bars, socket extensions as well as one time use only specialty tools.

OK...I'm coming out of the closet...I'll admit it...HF is one of my favorite stores! LOL!
__________________


First Bimmer..."Miss December"...2000 323i, purchased Dec. 2013 w/82K on the clock. PM thus far...pads/rotors, belts/pulleys, complete CS overhaul, FCABs, plugs, autotranny filter change, ATF drain and fill, rear diff drain and fill. Emergency repairs...PS pump, turn signal stalk, CPS, Ignition Coil #2 cyl, electric aux fan.
ChuckyVee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 12:35 PM   #15
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckyVee View Post
OK...I'm coming out of the closet...I'll admit it...HF is one of my favorite stores! LOL!
LOL, I use to talk smack about HF...that is...until they opened a store up close to me. I go there often, they have some good sales.
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 08:36 PM   #16
ChuckyVee
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Woodway, Texas
Posts: 430
My Ride: 2000 323i
Quote:
Originally Posted by KaktusJaque View Post
LOL, I use to talk smack about HF...that is...until they opened a store up close to me. I go there often, they have some good sales.
Yessiree!
__________________


First Bimmer..."Miss December"...2000 323i, purchased Dec. 2013 w/82K on the clock. PM thus far...pads/rotors, belts/pulleys, complete CS overhaul, FCABs, plugs, autotranny filter change, ATF drain and fill, rear diff drain and fill. Emergency repairs...PS pump, turn signal stalk, CPS, Ignition Coil #2 cyl, electric aux fan.
ChuckyVee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:16 PM   #17
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Yeah I've been looking around the local stores near me to see what they offer. At the moment, there's a couple of cheap sets of tools with everything but torque wrenches for between $60 to $160. The $160 one does come with lifetime warranty though, which might be something to consider.

Just wanted to ask again though, and I know this is one of those questions that almost everyone hates: Oil. At the moment, I've picked up Liqui Moly (also under Lubro Moly) Leichtlauf High Tech 5W-40, which is LL-01 certified. The oil currently in the car is ELF 5W-30 (Not sure which specific) which is LL-04. I've been reading and checking as best as I can, to find out which ideal is reasonable for my usage, and I've come to Liqui Moly. Some of the oils (M1, Castol) etc is pretty hard for me to get for a good price. Is what I've chosen fine? It is LL-01 certified so that was a start for me.
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:32 PM   #18
KaktusJaque
OEM ///Member
 
KaktusJaque's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 576
My Ride: 2003 325xi
LL-01 is perfect for your car, you done good! Basically any oil that says LL-01 is approved oil.
__________________
KJ----Trust nothing that you read, and only half of what you see---Trust but Verify for yourself.


2003 Touring 325 XiT (KJ's Ride)
2004 Coupe 325 Ci (Mrs. KJ's Ride)
KaktusJaque is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 10:50 PM   #19
aleksankazakov
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: U.S.A
Posts: 235
My Ride: 04 E46 330i sport
Ok, you need to feel the car, hear it, after awhile you will pick sounds and know right away that oil is bad . I trust Castrol advance formula synthetic oil. I tried Mobil 1 but my ear picked up bad oil sound quicker than Castrol gone bad. If you start hearing tickling sound of valves. Your oil gone.

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app

Last edited by aleksankazakov; 04-05-2014 at 10:51 PM.
aleksankazakov is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-05-2014, 11:35 PM   #20
Bafffyyy
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 604
My Ride: is Estoril Blue!
Send a message via Skype™ to Bafffyyy
Is 5W-40 ok though? (That'll be my last question on oil, hehe.)
__________________

'03 325i Individual
See my progress thread!
Bafffyyy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:16 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use