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Suspension & Braking Forum by BimmerWorld
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:22 PM   #1
Ixi640
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Rear clunking after doing suspension

2000 323i 5spd 130k

Car needed the suspension done badly, had a mechanic friend replace front control arms/bushings, struts/mounts, and rear shocks/mounts, and the fuel filter for good measure. There was no clunking previously, now it clunks from the rear passenger side frequently, but not specifically tied to any driving action like shifting gears or braking.

Buddy said he didn't remove the rear wheels, and we checked the mounts and underneath while having the parking brake on and giving the car some gas to rock it a little and everything looked fine.

He said he had to drop the subframe for the front arms because a bolt was bad or something (sorry I am not super mechanically inclined). I never had the subframe checked or repaired on this car because I bought it just around the end of that recall without knowing about it until later. Is it possible it affected the rear and sent it over the edge or something?

Otherwise the parking brake would on rare occasion make some noise from that side similar to what is happening now, but never while driving only when first releasing it. Parking brake seems like it needs even more pull up to work, but I tried driving slow while messing with it and it squealed a bit but didn't make any clunking sound.

Any ideas on what it could be?

Thanks
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:41 PM   #2
Alex323Ci
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probably the rear shocks bolt or mount since that's all he touched back there. open the trunk and rock down on the rear and see if you can hear anything. check the top bolt and be sure he used the washer under the mount also. When people forget this it breaks the mount quickly.
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:50 PM   #3
Alex323Ci
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a 14 yr old 323i with 130K+ miles that sees Chicago winter salt roads is highly likely to succumb to the subframe cracking. yes I would check for this either way or do something to help prevent this.

Last edited by Alex323Ci; 07-26-2014 at 12:51 PM.
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Old 07-26-2014, 01:10 PM   #4
Ixi640
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex323Ci View Post
open the trunk and rock down on the rear and see if you can hear anything.
We tried that too and it seemed ok.

Quote:
check the top bolt and be sure he used the washer under the mount also. When people forget this it breaks the mount quickly.
I'll check that, I don't think he would have forgotten something like that but it's possible I suppose.
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Old 07-26-2014, 01:27 PM   #5
Ixi640
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Ok the washer is there. If I rock down on it with the brake on it squeaks a little, without the brake no noise at all. I can see the mount moving up and down a little bit but I assume that is normal.
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Old 07-26-2014, 01:56 PM   #6
Alex323Ci
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so it "squeaks" but this isn't the "clunking" you say you have now right?

just verifying the top shock mounts cupped washer is dished shaped up and not down. and you confirmed the other "bottom washer" is between the shock mounts underside and the shock's dust shield?

other thing is he had it on a lift with suspension hanging? did he torque the rear bottom shock bolt when the car's wheels were level on ground? otherwise if the suspension is fully extended(hanging) and he torques the bottom shock's bolt it preloads it at a different angle.

but these will cause a squeak but not clunking in my experience

lastly these rear shock mounts are stock style or some different design aftermarket ones?
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Old 08-03-2014, 12:59 PM   #7
Ixi640
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Thanks for the help Alex. It did end up being the parking brake, it was sticking to rust on the inside of the rotor. Now she's riding very smooth again. Must have been coincidence or the wheel got knocked a little bit or something during the shock change.

Last edited by Ixi640; 08-03-2014 at 01:01 PM.
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