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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 05-05-2014, 09:29 AM   #1
phildobaggins
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My Ride: 2001 325xi Wagon
Phildo's Front Brake Pulse Rip/Replace Tracker

So now I have a new clutch and related bushing and parts, all new lines for my emissions system, and the shifter is fixed. The other issue this $4000 beater has is heavy pulsation that shakes the wheel under light/medium braking. Hard braking still vibes but its not as bad.

Off the cuff i'll bet money on the rotors, when you come to a complete stop you can literally feel the pad going over the high spot on the rotor.

My other possibilty is the above combined with worn FCABs but honestly they seem fine on the kick the tire tests as well as over speed bumps and rough roads.

So my options are now:

Replace the rotors and pads for $100 or so and bleed the brakes, maybe replace the front lines for another $20ish.

or

Replace the entire caliper assembly (includes all pads and hardware) for $110 for the fronts, another $55 for rotors and $20ish for lines.

I kinda like the idea of refreshing everything.
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Old 05-05-2014, 10:07 AM   #2
phildobaggins
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I will also adjust my ebrake while i'm at it.
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Old 05-05-2014, 11:03 AM   #3
Kubica
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Not another tracker thread!
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Old 05-05-2014, 11:12 AM   #4
phildobaggins
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Im a maintenance psycho, i'm down to just 2 issues left.

Brakes and my self inflicted header to mid pipe leak that is left over from my clutch job. I'll take it to a shop for that though, i dont want to deal with old rusty studs without a torch etc..
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:17 PM   #5
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Not another tracker thread!
I'm gonna start a Phildobaggins tracker thread.
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Old 05-14-2014, 02:45 PM   #6
phildobaggins
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Ordered a set of front rotors and pads (callahan) for $80

Caliper grease.

24oz of prestone DOT4, I have like 5oz left over as well.

6 new OEM bosch spark plugs, 3oz dielectric grease since my tube is about out.

I broke my headlight washer pump output line by looking at it when I put in a matching HID d2 bulb the previous owner left with me. My new pump should be in tomorrow, sourced one on ebay for super cheap.

No Check SES lights since last Friday evening...simply amazing. 3rd gear was grinding on downshifts really bad prior to my clutch replacement, fluid replacements etc.. Then it stopped, yesterday it started grinding again...its just wearing out. Double clutchin vin diesel style helps but I'll be keeping an eye out for xi 5spd transmission in the junkyard finders. If I locate a good deal i'll probably end up swapping in another manual trans later this summer after I install AC in my garage.

Texas is hot.

Hopefully the brakes and supplies will be in next week while im off-call. I was going to do a core exchange and get new loaded calipers but i'll inspect them first, if they are good then i'll reuse, if they are sticky I may just rebuild them. Same goes for the brake lines all the way around.
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Old 05-14-2014, 02:47 PM   #7
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Also need to swap out diff fluid, already got all the supplies for that but I needed a break from messy car work for a while.
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Old 05-14-2014, 10:42 PM   #8
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You may want to read up on bleeding these systems should you intend to yank the brake lines or dump the master. They have a funny way of never getting pedal pressure back due to the anti-lock system getting air-bound. The fix? Often requires a dealer attached device that activates the ABS to pull fluid. Just sayin', I've read where this can be a shocker after all fluid is drained and you're trying to restore the pedal.
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Old 05-15-2014, 06:23 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by White_Knuckles View Post
You may want to read up on bleeding these systems should you intend to yank the brake lines or dump the master. They have a funny way of never getting pedal pressure back due to the anti-lock system getting air-bound. The fix? Often requires a dealer attached device that activates the ABS to pull fluid. Just sayin', I've read where this can be a shocker after all fluid is drained and you're trying to restore the pedal.
You don't know the trick? Find sand or gravel covered pavement and get ABS to kick on at each corner. Bleed them again for best results.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:13 AM   #10
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^ Yup, just slam on the brakes a few times on a loose surface and let the car bleed itself. Then crack the bleeder screws again and top it off. No need to get the dealer involved.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:48 AM   #11
phildobaggins
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I can definitely see activating ABS to cycle old fluid trapped in the ABS controller into the general population but just bleeding with a mityvac and filling the res I dont see how the ABS would come into play unless I let the res run dry. Your thoughts?

PS, I always put like 10" hg vac on the line prior to cracking any bleeders, this completely avoids air getting into the system.

Last edited by phildobaggins; 05-15-2014 at 09:49 AM.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:57 PM   #12
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Yeah, the reports are normally after the master and lines are dry. I've read mixed results with the gravel/snow lock-up trick so I didn't recommend it. However, it should be mentioned that others have success - well worth trying. You never really know what the posters procedures are so they could be creating other issues? Often the dealer ABS tickler machine has been the save for many. I am spooked so just progressively flush my own by gravity bleeding all 4 corners while adding new fluid to the res. Vacs and pumps seem good in theory but again, some have had issues with these gizmos and went back to old-school. It's all in how you do it and what you have. I've seen a lot of unhappy brake stories up here all having to with drain pain.
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Old 05-15-2014, 11:14 PM   #13
phildobaggins
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Yeah, the reports are normally after the master and lines are dry. I've read mixed results with the gravel/snow lock-up trick so I didn't recommend it. However, it should be mentioned that others have success - well worth trying. You never really know what the posters procedures are so they could be creating other issues? Often the dealer ABS tickler machine has been the save for many. I am spooked so just progressively flush my own by gravity bleeding all 4 corners while adding new fluid to the res. Vacs and pumps seem good in theory but again, some have had issues with these gizmos and went back to old-school. It's all in how you do it and what you have. I've seen a lot of unhappy brake stories up here all having to with drain pain.
I can totally see a single person working on the brakes, flushing lines and bleeding to much fluid before going up front to fill the res. Most handheld vac bleeders have a reservoir so you can pretty well gauge how much fluid has evacuated. Well see how it goes and of couse i'll report back positive or negative results.
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Old 05-16-2014, 02:22 PM   #14
phildobaggins
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Looks like my brakes, fluids, greases etc.. and my headlight washer pump all came in early. Woo hoo. Looks like i'll be able to stop and squirt this weekend....
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Old 05-16-2014, 02:45 PM   #15
SamDoe1
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Is there a tracker thread for all the tracker threads? I should start one.
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Old 05-16-2014, 04:55 PM   #16
phildobaggins
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Is there a tracker thread for all the tracker threads? I should start one.
I think it would be best if you started tracking my trackers. We both have a time investment in tracking my trackers at this point. We would also benefit from another redundancy, someone to track your tracker of my trackers.
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Old 05-18-2014, 01:11 AM   #17
phildobaggins
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Here is what I did.

Tools:

1/2" torque wrench
24" 1/2" breaker bar
17mm socket with extension (wheel bolts)
16mm socket short (caliper bracket)
6mm hex driver (rotor retaining screw)
7m hex driver (caliper slide bolts)
Liqui Moly (2012) LM 508 Anti-Seize Compound (contact points and rotor screw threads)
Permatex 85188 Ultra Disc Brake Caliper Lube (for caliper slide bolts)
Prestone DOT4 synthetic
mityvac hand pump
2 bottles of brake cleaner, get 3 next time. It goes quick.
coat hanger
large c clamp

Already bled the rears clean yesterday.

17mm and breaker to break the front lugs (wheel bolts, whatev)

Jacked up the car, jack stands under the front pad jack points.

Ebrake is on the entire time, chocked a rear wheel as well.

removed lugs by hand, removed wheels.

Bled the front brakes tonight prior to maint. Bled 1.5-2 oz at a time, then filled the reservoir to the top and repeated until new fluid was coming out. THIS DID NOT LEAD TO ANY GOOFY REQUIREMENT OF CYCLING THE ABS BLAH BLAH BLAH, brakes is brakes kids.

Started on the passenger front.

Removed slide bolt covers, removed caliper slide bolts with 7mm hex.

removed retaining spring. its fussy, keep at it.

hung caliper aside with coat hanger.

Removed old pads, inspect for signs of abnormal wear, my outside pad had a 1mm wide crack.

inspected caliper, piston is very rusted, I will replace the entire caliper in the next 30k miles. It is however, still functioning fine.

bled a little more brake fluid from the caliper, than used c clamp to press in caliper piston.

Checked the topside reservoir to make sure it didnt leak. Used mity vac to remove excess fluid, it was now just about to overflow.

removed rotor screw

Wacked caliper with my dead blow a few times, it came off easily.

installed new rotor after cleaning it with nearly a full can of brake cleaner

reinstalled caliper bracket, lubed contact points with moly paste.

torqued caliper bracket to 80ft lbs, it maybe higher/lower whatever the spec is in the bentley manual. Look it up already.

lubed up new pads at all contact points, installed inside pad into caliper piston, snaps in.

installed outside pad into caliper bracket.

reinstalled caliper

cleaned slide bolts, covered with permatex caliper pin grease (green jelly), installed. Torqued by feel, should be roughly 25 ftlbs

reinstalled retaining spring.

put some moly paste on the rotor where it meets the wheel to avoid sticky wheel to rotor syndrome later.

I'm sure i'm missing something, its late. Total job took around 3 hours with a really bad back.

Test drive was almost creepy smooth. Very linear braking.
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Old 05-18-2014, 11:44 AM   #18
White_Knuckles
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"Bled the front brakes tonight prior to maint. Bled 1.5-2 oz at a time, then filled the reservoir to the top and repeated until new fluid was coming out. THIS DID NOT LEAD TO ANY GOOFY REQUIREMENT OF CYCLING THE ABS BLAH BLAH BLAH, brakes is brakes kids"

As stated before, air in the ABS system ONLY occurs when the lines and master are drained dry. In your case, the lines were never drained. Captain Obvious says - your point of "goofy requirement... blah, blah" was never stated as a requirement when a replenishing method is used. Your first post indicates you may want to "change the front lines". Wished I hadn't offered the concern as you seem far more clever on these matters. I was just tricking people.
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:00 PM   #19
phildobaggins
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Quote:
Originally Posted by White_Knuckles View Post
"Bled the front brakes tonight prior to maint. Bled 1.5-2 oz at a time, then filled the reservoir to the top and repeated until new fluid was coming out. THIS DID NOT LEAD TO ANY GOOFY REQUIREMENT OF CYCLING THE ABS BLAH BLAH BLAH, brakes is brakes kids"

As stated before, air in the ABS system ONLY occurs when the lines and master are drained dry. In your case, the lines were never drained. Captain Obvious says - your point of "goofy requirement... blah, blah" was never stated as a requirement when a replenishing method is used. Your first post indicates you may want to "change the front lines". Wished I hadn't offered the concern as you seem far more clever on these matters. I was just tricking people.
That wasn't towards your post sir, don't get all internet defensive. That statement was directed at the numerous posts I found regarding people saying bleeding e46 brakes requires special 'this or that'.

Now you hurt my feelings and i'll have to sell my car and stick to my Kawasaki forums...
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Old 05-18-2014, 06:31 PM   #20
Kubica
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The sand /gravel trick usually only needs to be done if you removed a brake line or changed a caliper slowly.
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