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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 06-09-2013, 11:12 AM   #1
SeanTea323
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Ever bought remanufactured brake calipers

Hi guys, my right rear caliper seized up on me and is burning the pads. I see that ecstuning and fcp euro have some reman calipers. Anyone have experience with using reman calipers? Are they good with new seals?


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Old 06-09-2013, 11:44 AM   #2
MJLavelle
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I bought new seals and a caliper piston hone, and did my own. The "remanufacturing" process basically does the same thing. There are only a few parts to replace.
BTW - your problem is more likely just a buildup of crud in the caliper mounting pin boots. I really don't think you need new calipers. Just pull the calipers, and clean off the pins, and clean out the boots on the mating part. It is worth trying, before spending the money on reman calipers. Of course, if the piston seal is torn, and allowing dirt inside the piston, then a reman would be a good choice. Or, you could buy the parts, and do it yourself.

Last edited by MJLavelle; 06-10-2013 at 03:15 AM.
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Old 06-09-2013, 01:09 PM   #3
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I bought reman'd front calipers from Pep Boys. Had a coupon and ended up costing about $35. They have the BMW stamp on them. The outside tend to rust faster so may end up painting, but otherwise work great. My old ones had 160k miles and were seizing also, cleaning did not work for me.
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Old 06-09-2013, 01:26 PM   #4
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Yup. No problems.
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Old 06-09-2013, 06:24 PM   #5
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I purchased some front and rear calipers off a guy parting out his E46 and soaked them in Evaporust and scrubbed them with a brass cleaning brush. Used some high heat primer and high heat spray and they look great! Of course, make sure you cover any of the holes and the part where the piston goes in to prevent the paint from going in. If you go to home depot they have some large washers that fit perfectly where the pistons go to block it. Just add some tape to cover the center hole of the washer so the paint doesn't go through. I used some metric bolts to plug the bleeder screw holes also.

Also ended up purchasing new pistons because the ones that came with the calipers were rusty and pitted. I could still probably use them since the sidewalls weren't pitted but I opted to go for new ones instead

$35 is a steal if they're reconditioned BMW calipers. I think they're about $500 from BMW for each wheel. Did yours come with new pistons too?

Last edited by dznuts007; 06-09-2013 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 06-09-2013, 07:10 PM   #6
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[QUOTE

$35 is a steal if they're reconditioned BMW calipers. I think they're about $500 from BMW for each wheel. Did yours come with new pistons too?[/QUOTE]

Yes, with pistons, ready to install.
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Old 06-09-2013, 07:16 PM   #7
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Old 06-17-2013, 11:02 AM   #8
SeanTea323
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Ever bought remanufactured brake calipers

Got some from napa since they are close by...same brand as what ecstuning sells. Thanks for the advice fellas. Installing today.


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Old 06-17-2013, 11:48 AM   #9
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I just swapped both my front calipers and picked up re-conditioned ones from Turner Motorsports. Only $63 each plus a $70 core deposit. To most people, they would look brand new. Everything is cleaned, re-conditioned and then the seals and piston are replaced with factory new parts. The nice thing is that these are BMW calipers.

I had the exact same problem with my front driver's side caliper freezing up. I replaced both since they were so cheap to do and the other caliper was looking pretty beat.

Last edited by Ack; 06-17-2013 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 06-17-2013, 11:57 AM   #10
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Ever bought remanufactured brake calipers

Yes. Paint it immediately before you install it. The originals are coated. The remans strip that coating and they turn orange quick
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Old 06-17-2013, 12:00 PM   #11
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I bought remanufactured brake calipers only once back in '76. That's when it all started to go south...
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Old 06-17-2013, 12:39 PM   #12
SeanTea323
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Ever bought remanufactured brake calipers

They say that they are sprayed with a clear coating for rust protection on the box, but I might paint them after work


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Old 06-17-2013, 01:46 PM   #13
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not on the bimmer, but on several other cars, yes. never had a problem.
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Old 06-17-2013, 02:56 PM   #14
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Yes. Paint it immediately before you install it. The originals are coated. The remans strip that coating and they turn orange quick
This is the first thing I did when I received mine. Even after curing them the brake fluid ate away a bunch of the paint. I had to re-spray them again once they were fully installed.

When I first got my car, I painted the calipers using G2 Caliper Paint. I never had issues with brake fluid eating this paint away. I only used high temp caliper paint (spray on) for the refurbed calipers, which is probably why the paint was stripped by the brake fluid.
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Old 06-17-2013, 03:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dznuts007 View Post
I purchased some front and rear calipers off a guy parting out his E46 and soaked them in Evaporust and scrubbed them with a brass cleaning brush. Used some high heat primer and high heat spray and they look great! Of course, make sure you cover any of the holes and the part where the piston goes in to prevent the paint from going in. If you go to home depot they have some large washers that fit perfectly where the pistons go to block it. Just add some tape to cover the center hole of the washer so the paint doesn't go through. I used some metric bolts to plug the bleeder screw holes also.

Also ended up purchasing new pistons because the ones that came with the calipers were rusty and pitted. I could still probably use them since the sidewalls weren't pitted but I opted to go for new ones instead

$35 is a steal if they're reconditioned BMW calipers. I think they're about $500 from BMW for each wheel. Did yours come with new pistons too?
Where did you get new pistons? I'm under the impression that neither BMW nor Ate will sell them separately

OP - remans are a bit of a crapshoot. A cheap one though. I replaced my front calipers with remans after I had light sticking on both sides. This fixed the problem for a year only to return on the driver's side. The next reman has held. I'm not convinced of the QC in regards to reusing pitted pistons - this was clearly the problem on the failed reman that I had gotten.

Good Luck,

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Old 06-17-2013, 03:23 PM   #16
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I got remanned maybe two years ago...just had one seize. Evidently, it'd been seized a while. When removed, the piston was seriously corroded and seal had failed. Still, the price is much less than OE.

Also, very important, use a line wrench. I started to remove the hose from the top connection and just slightly stripped the edges of nut...that was enough.

If I hadn't of been at the shop, with my friend, that mistake would have cost me hundreds. He ended up cutting off the fitting, adding a new flare to it and had the right size new fitting...coz, you know, it's a shop and they know stuff we don't know...like using a line wrench! I believe it was 11 mm, but confirm that for when you replace those brake lines. The bottom fitting is, I think, 14 mm, but don't think you can get a line wrench on that one...opened ended is fine there.
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Old 06-17-2013, 03:48 PM   #17
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AutohausAZ has reman calipers for around $55 after core refund.
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Old 06-17-2013, 05:11 PM   #18
dznuts007
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I had to purchase the pistons from the UK. Purchased a few sets so that I can rebuild my old brakes and sell em

I was at Autozone the other day and asked to see the rebuilt BMW brakes and lo and behold, they have BMW stamped on them. I think they were $50 for rebuilt BMW brakes. My only beef was with the condition of the pistons...or at least the exposed portion. They were definitely corroded but I guess it doesn't matter just as long as the part that sits inside the caliper is smooth and free from rust and pitting.

For 270,000 miles, I'm actually surprised at the condition my pistons were in. They were in better condition than the pistons on the used brakes that I purchase off a guy parting out his BMW on Craigslist.

Regarding Dmax's warning on using line wrenches, I know what he means. I didn't have any on hand, but luckily I didn't need much force to loosing the lines leading into the calipers. BUT I can see that they can be EASILY stripped



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ack View Post
This is the first thing I did when I received mine. Even after curing them the brake fluid ate away a bunch of the paint. I had to re-spray them again once they were fully installed.

When I first got my car, I painted the calipers using G2 Caliper Paint. I never had issues with brake fluid eating this paint away. I only used high temp caliper paint (spray on) for the refurbed calipers, which is probably why the paint was stripped by the brake fluid.
I sprayed with paint then gave it a few coats of clearcoat (high temp clearcoat of course...same with the paint) Didn't have any issues with the brake fluid ruining the paintjob. I did, however, have an issue with brake cleaning fluid on the caliper paintjob

Word of advice, if you're trying to clean the grime and brake dust off freshly painted calipers after installing them, use a degreaser instead...

Last edited by dznuts007; 06-17-2013 at 07:28 PM.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:31 AM   #19
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The reman brake calipers from the NAPA store worked great....so far. Turner motorsport had cheaper ones but I had to change it out fast because the strain on the car was bad plus heated rotor. I sprayed a few coats of caliper paint on them. These should work til I get a big brake kit later down the road.
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:10 AM   #20
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Check local classifieds for a remanufactured caliper. Costs $50. I've done this to every car I've owned, at least 1 each and never goes bad by the time i sell years later. Don't spend $500 on a brand new one... That's just a waste.
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