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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 09-11-2012, 08:51 PM   #201
aikmanson
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Bump - Damn it need to do this ASAP, rear end clunk is pretty bad.
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:05 PM   #202
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Can anyone who has actually done this speak to the fact that I might be able to accomplish the bushing removal and installation with this tool set from HarborFreight? http://www.harborfreight.com/fwd-fro...ers-66829.html

Seems almost the same as some of the other kits mentioned here. Just the Diff bushes I am interested in..
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Old 10-09-2012, 04:11 PM   #203
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Also wondering if maybe this tool would work to remove the diff bushings:

http://www.harborfreight.com/bushing...set-38145.html
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Old 10-09-2012, 04:21 PM   #204
trizzuth
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Originally Posted by jogfrogjog View Post
just removed the 3 bushings... the big rear one came out fairly easy after getting the right tools and spraying around the edge of the bushing with some royal purple maxfilm penetrating oil and letting it sit for a day and spraying some more right before wrenching on it and it came out easy... I used this from harbor freight but with 1/2" bolts from hardware stores and a coupling to match and grade 8 washers:

http://www.harborfreight.com/fwd-fro...b-001b2166c62d

For the front bushings I sprayed them as well and was fighting with them over the weekend and found that ripping out the center aluminum sleep with 3/8" bolts and washers that are smaller make it easier... then I used the 1/2" bolt with washers that were just right to pull the rest of the outer bushing lip through.

Now a question, for installation, are you supposed to grease or antiseize the diff bushings and/or the housings?

Well I suppose you've just answered my other question as to whether or not this can be done using the HF Front wheel bearing adapter kit that I just got for pulling out the rear bearings. So the new bolt that you got is actually skinnier than the one that comes with the HF kit?
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Old 12-29-2012, 09:56 AM   #205
jcallanan
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I have a slight clunk I need to look into as well, but at the moment I'm struggling through a CCV replacement and by the looks of this excellently documented DIY, I wouldn't touch this job with a 10-foot pole! Congrats on tackling it. Hope it worked out.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:12 PM   #206
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I was laffing like a evil genius !!!!. Love it.. Might leave this on to the shop LoL
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Old 01-14-2013, 01:29 AM   #207
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Originally Posted by trizzuth View Post
Well I suppose you've just answered my other question as to whether or not this can be done using the HF Front wheel bearing adapter kit that I just got for pulling out the rear bearings. So the new bolt that you got is actually skinnier than the one that comes with the HF kit?
Ya, it's skinnier... I went through a few bolts on some things so be prepared. You might need some washers with the skinnier bolts.
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Old 01-14-2013, 01:33 AM   #208
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I will note, replacing the bushings did not take care of my clunking problem. In fact it seems to be getting louder. One of my co-workers jokes that it sounds like a dead body in the trunk. I'm looking at possibly replacing the CSB and possibly the rear diff.
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Old 01-24-2013, 05:53 PM   #209
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The '99 328i we bought three weeks ago had the dreaded clunk. After reading everything here [and given it has 168K miles] it sounded like the dreaded subframe failure. Turns out there were no signs of subframe cracking. The clunk was caused by a failed rear diff carrier bushing. This is what it looked like:



Replaced the failed rear bushing, and since the diff had to come out I did the front two diff carrier busings as well. All good now - totally clunk free.
FWIW, I used the Koch tools to R&R the bushes. Bought the rear bush tool from a guy on this board who has sold his E46 and rented the front bush tool from a local guy. Easy peasy.

Last edited by APKhaos; 01-25-2013 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:52 AM   #210
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APKhaos View Post
The '99 328i we bought three weeks ago had the dreaded clunk. After reading everything here [and given it has 168K miles] it sounded like the dreaded subframe failure. Turns out there were no signs of subframe cracking. The clunk was caused by a failed rear diff carrier bushing. This is what it looked like:



Replaced the failed rear bushing, and since the diff had to come out I did the front two diff carrier busings as well. All good now - totally clunk free.
FWIW, I used the Koch tools to R&R the bushes. Bought the rear bush tool from a guy on this board who has sold his E46 and rented the front bush tool from a local guy. Easy peasy.
how did you take this video? did you jack up the rear and rev the engine or something? i have this clunk too (really annoying) and i was hoping it's the CSB (center support bearing)..
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Old 01-27-2013, 12:08 PM   #211
APKhaos
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Originally Posted by mikeetastic View Post
how did you take this video? did you jack up the rear and rev the engine or something? i have this clunk too (really annoying) and i was hoping it's the CSB (center support bearing)..
If you look at the OP's video and mine, plus read through this thread, you'll see that there is more than one thing that can cause a pronounced clunk in the drive train. First step is to identify what is causing the clunk in YOUR car.

- Jack up the rear and place jackstands to support the car with the rear wheels off the ground.
- You'll need two people. One to cycle between first and reverse gear to produce the clunk, and one underneath with a good light to find what is moving to cause the clunk. In my case the clunk showed up clearly by simple shiftign from first to reverse with the engine at idle, and I think that should be true for most cases. If you need to, you can pull on a little handbrake to create a bit more drag on the drivetrain [you'll need a few more revs to get teh wheels turning in this case].

Once you are 100% sure you've found the cause, the rest is easy. You can find the cause yourself, and in most cases you can repair it yourself provided its not the dreaded subframe tearing which takes real welding gear and skills.

Last edited by APKhaos; 01-27-2013 at 09:03 PM.
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Old 02-03-2013, 01:03 AM   #212
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OK.. do you think this is the cause of my clunk? manage to take this video a while using a ramp then handbrake and shifting it to 1st gear...



so sorry if it's short and shaky coz my cameraman is an 8year old haha..
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Old 02-03-2013, 09:27 AM   #213
APKhaos
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Its a hard call based on that video because you need to look carefully at the other things that may be moving/clunking. There's certainly a lot of movement, and a nasty sheet metal sound. Might be best to get a friend/wife to do the 'driving' while you take a really good look for movement underneath.
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Old 03-06-2013, 05:40 PM   #214
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Just got through with the replacement of my rear differential bushing. You can indeed use the bushing press to remove the bushing but you can't use the driver that came with it. After using the self made tool that are posted on here, found out that they didn't work, the flanges cracked into pieces so I used the wheel from my floor jack instead because it is the same diameter as the bushing but not as long as the driver from the bushing press. FYI, the bushing press isn't a bushing press, it is a ball joint adapter set. You can rent it from Oreilly for $130. Autozone does not have it. Email me at marcus.1973@live.com for info...

Last edited by Suave-marq; 03-06-2013 at 05:43 PM.
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Old 03-06-2013, 05:59 PM   #215
mikeetastic
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Originally Posted by Suave-marq View Post
Just got through with the replacement of my rear differential bushing. You can indeed use the bushing press to remove the bushing but you can't use the driver that came with it. After using the self made tool that are posted on here, found out that they didn't work, the flanges cracked into pieces so I used the wheel from my floor jack instead because it is the same diameter as the bushing but not as long as the driver from the bushing press. FYI, the bushing press isn't a bushing press, it is a ball joint adapter set. You can rent it from Oreilly for $130. Autozone does not have it. Email me at marcus.1973@live.com for info...
to be clear - you use a ball joint set to remove and install (plus your floor jack's wheels) the rear diff bushings?.

Like this video?


Last edited by mikeetastic; 03-06-2013 at 06:03 PM.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:11 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by mikeetastic View Post
OK.. do you think this is the cause of my clunk? manage to take this video a while using a ramp then handbrake and shifting it to 1st gear...



so sorry if it's short and shaky coz my cameraman is an 8year old haha..
That could be the bushing, but I gotta be honest that was pretty loud. I'd get the subframe checked out because that had a very metal-like sound to it.
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:15 AM   #217
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I just finished this last weekend. Took about 6 hours from start to finish and the car no longer clunks. I didn't replace the front two because they were still in excellent shape and it would've been a waste of time. Car feels so much better now. I also noticed that BMW redesigned the bushing and that it's fully encased in rubber now instead of being a rubber/metal bracket type bushing. Mine was cracked almost all the way around. If anybody is looking for the tool to rent, here is where I rented mine from:

https://www.automotivespecialtytool....tail.php?id=94

It says not available but it has already been shipped back and should be ready within a few days to rent. Very simple to use.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:19 AM   #218
mikeetastic
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That could be the bushing, but I gotta be honest that was pretty loud. I'd get the subframe checked out because that had a very metal-like sound to it.
my subframe is flawless..

what bushing did you get? OEM or Meyle HD?
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Old 03-07-2013, 12:20 PM   #219
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OEM Lemforder bushing.
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Old 04-03-2013, 11:58 PM   #220
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Hi all, I just wanted to give some feedback on this fix after completing it last weekend.

After reading the original post, I assumed that the bushing was going to be really difficult to get out. Weekly over about 4 weeks prior, I got some WD40 and sprayed it on each side of the bushing around the perimeter to try and loosen things up a bit. I only needed to remove the rear large bushing so this is all I worked on.

The tool I made myself and was similar to the one used by the OP. Pretty simple to make if you have some basic tools. The plate piece that pulls the bushing out/in I just cut from a piece of 8mm flat bar I bought from the local metal dealer. It's rolled bar rather than being a cast piece so it was pretty strong. I cut it to size using a small angle grinder and and 1mm blade. The bushing is 68mm across, so I made it about 67mm. The large pipe piece was a standard size steel pipe bought from the local metal dealer. I just took the new bushing the dealer and found a piece of pipe that the bushing just fit inside of. It was about 70mm inside diameter. I roughly cut another flat bar piece to go over the end of the large pipe, and with a 1/2 inch threaded bar and a couple of nuts, I had my tool. The whole tool cost less than $10.

When it came to removing the bushing, my experience was very different to the OP's.

I found that removing the exhaust entirely made removal of the stabilzer bar much easier and just got it out of the way for all the other tasks. With a second person, this is a pretty simple task.

When it came to removing the bushing, I was surprised how easily it came out. That being said, the underside of my car looked nothing like the OP's. I live in a warm country where it never snows, and there is never salt on the roads. My car is always garaged, and hence there is very little corrosion. The bushing outer shell looked a little corroded, but that was it. I probably used about 40Nm of torque to initially get it moving, and then after that, it was quite easy to move. I put my impact wrench on it just being lazy, and on a pretty low setting, it took about 10 secs for complete removal. It would have taken a couple of minutes at the most to do it by hand. When the bushing was out, the inside of the bushing carrier was nicely covered in lubricant from my applications of WD40. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who was going to do this task.
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