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Mid Atlantic
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Old 01-26-2017, 02:11 PM   #1
kgregory
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Washington DC
Posts: 61
My Ride: 2005 330Ci
HELP! Separate my ball joint

I need help. I can't separate the inner ball joint on my passenger side front control arm for my life. I posted on facebook e46_owners group asking for tips last week and got lots of great advice. I've tried them all and it still won't budge. Here's what I've tried (pickel fork, two pickel forks, applying heat, PB blaster, using leverage, air hammer, "literally beat the **** out of it"). I've been trying for over a week and I'm about ready to give up, but I don't know what to do next.

Does anyone live near college park with experience doing this and is willing to stop by to help? I'm willing to write a check, if needed.
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Old 01-30-2017, 08:00 AM   #2
John in VA
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Leesburg, VA
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My Ride: 328i/325xi
Have you checked the big-box auto parts stores for the style of separator depicted below? Many of these stores have free rental with a deposit. Also, banging on the sides of the joint with 2 hammers simultaneously can sometimes break the taper loose.
Good luck!

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Old 01-30-2017, 02:25 PM   #3
Renboy
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By inner ball joint I assume you mean the one that's bolted to the front subframe rather than the one bolted to the steering knuckle, correct? Loosen the nut that holds it in place and go for a drive close to home. Once you hear it banging around, head home.
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Old 02-19-2017, 10:11 PM   #4
kgregory
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Join Date: May 2011
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My Ride: 2005 330Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by Renboy View Post
By inner ball joint I assume you mean the one that's bolted to the front subframe rather than the one bolted to the steering knuckle, correct? Loosen the nut that holds it in place and go for a drive close to home. Once you hear it banging around, head home.
I wound up bolting it back together and taking it to a local shop. Cost me $240 to get the one side done plus an allignment. I wish I had seen this. Seemed like it would be unsafe to drive it around loose like that.
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Old 03-05-2017, 12:23 PM   #5
WilloCO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renboy View Post
By inner ball joint I assume you mean the one that's bolted to the front subframe rather than the one bolted to the steering knuckle, correct? Loosen the nut that holds it in place and go for a drive close to home. Once you hear it banging around, head home.
This is incredibly irresponsible - this could literally get someone killed.
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I bedded my pads when I switched from ceramic to my PDF-Z pads. They actually caught fire during bed in.
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