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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 12-01-2012, 11:33 AM   #181
sb2007
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As an update, my failing bearing started to growl so loud that I got nervous about a long drive coming up and didn't want to wait for a new bearing to be shipped. So I bought a "Timken" bearing from Autozone for $47.

Well it turns out that Timken outsources their BMW bearings. I was pleasantly surprised to find a shiny new OEM F A G bearing in the Timken box! And for only $47 - a fraction of what other places charge.

Other people have had the same experience too:

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=940960

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Old 12-01-2012, 06:16 PM   #182
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^
Luck of the draw.
It really depends on the location.
I was not fortunate enough to find any F.A.G packaged in their box at Autozone...

Last edited by BimmersGarage; 12-01-2012 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:43 PM   #183
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Anyone come across SWAG branded bearings? I had a look at their product catalogue, they manufacture for a huge variety of manufacturers and models...

It is a Bilstein group company and I wanted some feedback before buying the product.
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Old 12-07-2012, 04:08 PM   #184
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Anyone?



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Old 12-07-2012, 04:09 PM   #185
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***, swag... what is this world comming to

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Old 04-19-2013, 04:22 PM   #186
Buck Henry
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I just finished replacing my front passenger wheel bearing using this DIY post, and have to say this is the easiest bearing ever to replace! My old bearing came off with a simple pull, inner race and all. Heck the hardest part of this job was getting the darn brake caliper assembly bolts to break loose. Thanks a ton for this post, it gave me the courage to tackle this job on my own and saved me a bunch of coin.

PS: my build date is Dec, 2000, so I was able to buy the PAX bearing from Autohausaz.com for only $55 bones! So cheap, I bought two and am about to replace the driver side bearing in a few minutes.

Last edited by Buck Henry; 04-19-2013 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:45 AM   #187
cory58
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Awesome thread! Many thanks to the OP and everyone else who's contributed, especially the YouTube videos from BimmersGarage. I was doing front brakes on my wife's 2001 325i (aprox 150k miles) and noticed that the LF bearing was a little crunchy. I paid a shop over $400 to replace it. When I saw the receipt and realized the hub/bearing was a single unit, I knew I could do the RF myself.

I got an SKF hub unit from Rock Auto and was ready to dive in last weekend when I found this thread. The first thing I learned was that I needed more parts and tools.

FYI for anyone reading this thread, my SKF hub came with a Koyo bearing. Hope I have a better experience with the Koyo bearing than "steve.325i" had.

I'm going to take the advice from many of the thread contributors and get new dust caps. Are the dust caps that people are replacing #2 and #4 in this diagram?



Thanks again. I'll report back once the job is done, if I learn anything that hasn't already been posted.

Cory

Last edited by cory58; 06-02-2013 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 07-21-2013, 10:35 PM   #188
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This Forum is indespensible in doing projects

I needed to do all four rotors, pads, two front calipers and the front hubs on my 2000 323ci. While I can follow instructions, it's not the same using the manual as it is to see step by step instructions in pictures or even better on youtube.

A special call out to the guy (not in this thread) that built the mason jar brake bleeder. Even though it involves pumping the brakes, it still can be done one man. Worked great and was less than $10.

Parts:
Any clear glass jar with a plastic or metal lid
1/4" clear plastic tubing (nor more than 3-5 feet)
1/4" vacuum check valve
Small zip ties

The check valve needs to be oriented so that it allows flow into the jar. I drilled a hole and secured to the lid with one zip tie. The other end has the tubing connected and secured with two zip ties since the tubing is a loos fit on the inlet side of the check valve. It just so happens that 1/4" clear plastic tubing goes over the bleeder nipple quite well.

Here is a picture
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Old 07-26-2013, 04:18 PM   #189
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E46 front wheel bearing DIY

Awesome DIY write up by SAG! This project went extremely well and I didn't run into any problems!
I could not find a 46mm slim wall socket anywhere so I bought the SAE equivalent 1-13/16" from Sears in a 3/4" size. Got a 3/4" to 1/2" adapter as well for $35 total.

I looked all over for the best price on hub-bearing assemblies and I was looking only for quality bearings (OEM, F.A.G., Timiken, SKF, etc.) for this project. I have had some great results with Timiken & F.A.G. bearings that I used on my 96 Toyota Corolla that had 405,000 miles when I sold it. So with that in mind my search lead me to AutoZone. Their price was $44.99 (+ tax) for a Timiken assembly with a 3 year warranty. To my pleasant surprise I come to find a F.A.G bearing in the Timiken hub when I picked the part up at the store. It took 2 days to get the part in but for the quality and the price I paid I could have easily waited longer.

Click image for larger version

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Below are some pics of the inboard and outboard look of the old OEM bearing with 92k miles in comparison to the new Timiken assembly:

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I was able to remove the hub assembly and rotor together as one piece by loosening the rotor retaining screw but putting it back in place for the hub removal. The inner race stayed on the spindle so I tried a small pry bar with very light force and noticed that the inner race was moving out so I kept working the pry bar carefully until I could pull the inner race out by hand.

I removed the ABS sensor also in the event that something slipped and would make contact with the sensor and damage it. Cheap insurance to keep me from buying a new sensor.

My symptoms of the bad bearing were slight vibrations at slow speeds (30+ MPH) with more noticeable vibrations at 65-75MPH. Also the front suspension (mainly on the left) felt loose and noisy over uneven road surfaces. Braking was also effected by this bad bearing in the way of a pulsing left front brake during medium-hard braking (almost like a wrapped rotor). I had checked the brake pads and rotor before & noticed that they were wearing evenly. What I was feeling was the worn bearing assembly causing the vibrations during braking due to it bring very loose.

I cannot believe what a major difference this new bearing assembly has done for the ride quality of the vehicle. My braking vibrations have also gone away and the vehicle seems to be more firm and quieter on uneven road surfaces. Thanks to this DIY replacing a hub bearing assembly on an E46 is one of the easiest jobs I have ever done.

I plan to replace the right bearing assembly soon but for now it is quiet and working well. This DIY went so smooth that I am tempted to replace the right bearing assembly for the fun of it!

Thanks again to SAG for this great write up!!!



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Last edited by Nickvjr; 07-26-2013 at 04:21 PM.
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Old 07-26-2013, 10:49 PM   #190
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If you're willing to spare a little bit of money, I highly recommend getting your hands on the official BMW special tool to install the front wheel bearings. Made getting it on very easy. No banging on the bearing or concern of any slight misalignment. You just thread the threaded shaft onto the spindle, slide the bearing as far as it'll go (it's about 1/1000" smaller than the spindle, so the bearing goes on very straight and no resistance), slide the larger shaft over, and then use the nut (which itself is a mini wheel bearing almost) to press the bearing onto the shaft.




Not likely something I'll use frequently... but I'm still glad I bought it. I suppose I can loan it to others who may want to use it

Last edited by TerraPhantm; 07-26-2013 at 10:51 PM.
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Old 07-27-2013, 06:34 PM   #191
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cory58 View Post
Awesome thread! Many thanks to the OP and everyone else who's contributed, especially the YouTube videos from BimmersGarage.Cory
Awesome to see this very old DIY of mine is still inspiring others to tackle something more challenging than an oil change.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickvjr View Post
Awesome DIY write up by GDA! This project went extremely well and I didn't run into any problems!

Thanks again to GDA for this great write up!!!
Thanks. Glad it all worked out.

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Originally Posted by TerraPhantm View Post
If you're willing to spare a little bit of money, I highly recommend getting your hands on the official BMW special tool to install the front wheel bearings.
Very cool. Looks quite nice!

BTW - the E46 sedan used in this DIY is now pushing 200k and runs really well.
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Old 08-11-2013, 07:35 PM   #192
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Great Thread OP.

Just pulled this off with no problems.
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Old 08-16-2013, 01:17 PM   #193
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Where did you guys find a 46mm socket at?
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Old 08-17-2013, 12:00 PM   #194
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Re: E46 front wheel bearing DIY

Ebay
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Old 08-17-2013, 11:59 PM   #195
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Where did you guys find a 46mm socket at?
Sears, ask for Craftsman 1 13/16 inch socket. Its about $25 bucks though. Picked one up today worked perfect. Couldn't wait for 46mm to be shipped...

Last edited by BM-MAN; 08-18-2013 at 12:08 AM.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:15 AM   #196
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Can you brake a bearing?

I have a 1999 323i (UK Spec).
Failed MOT and I had to replace all the brakes (Rotors and Pads only).
The front rotors were severely rusted and took a bit of hammering to break free.
Now I have the good old WhHRR WhHrr wHhrR sounds from the front right (driver), basically at varying intensity from about 25 Mph up to 70Mph (fastest I can go... rural area)

The noise wasn't there before.... what's the chance I was a little too aggressive with the hammer? More details... car has 106K miles. Maybe it was on the verge and I wreaked it... this is the last thing I need right now.

I have only had the car for a year and a half, whoever had it before sucked at maintenance... so far all new brakes, and about to change all the metal brake pipes because they are rusted. And I have to rebuild the hand brakes, now this, so I want to be sure before I go out and buy more parts(that I really can't afford )

Really appreciate any help.

OH>:>: are the hubs on UK spec the same as US spec? I cant see why not, but id hate to order the wrong thing....

Ps: this is an awesome DIY. I looked at a few YouTube vids and was really worried about doing this, but after reading this one it looks easy, and I'm not even a little worried about the work.

Last edited by kurzball13; 10-01-2013 at 06:21 AM. Reason: forgot to add something
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Old 10-01-2013, 07:32 AM   #197
JmAbshire
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I pretty much guarantee you that knock'n the rotors like you did hosed the hubs, been there before! Check realoem.com for fitment relative to your VIN.
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Old 10-01-2013, 08:55 AM   #198
lemniscate
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Hammering off rusted rotors hosed my front wheel bearings. I made sure to use plenty of anti-seize when putting on the replacements; I wish the person who had put the previous rotors on had done the same.
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Old 10-01-2013, 10:26 AM   #199
kurzball13
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Thanks for the help

That's what I was afraid of. Oh well.
Thanks for the info!!
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Old 12-15-2013, 03:20 PM   #200
cory58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cory58 View Post
Awesome thread! Many thanks to the OP and everyone else who's contributed, especially the YouTube videos from BimmersGarage. I was doing front brakes on my wife's 2001 325i (aprox 150k miles) and noticed that the LF bearing was a little crunchy. I paid a shop over $400 to replace it. When I saw the receipt and realized the hub/bearing was a single unit, I knew I could do the RF myself.

I got an SKF hub unit from Rock Auto and was ready to dive in last weekend when I found this thread. The first thing I learned was that I needed more parts and tools.

FYI for anyone reading this thread, my SKF hub came with a Koyo bearing. Hope I have a better experience with the Koyo bearing than "steve.325i" had.

I'm going to take the advice from many of the thread contributors and get new dust caps. Are the dust caps that people are replacing #2 and #4 in this diagram?



Thanks again. I'll report back once the job is done, if I learn anything that hasn't already been posted.

Cory
Replaced the right front hub a few months ago and all is good. Could not have done it without this DIY. The job was super easy. Bought a bearing/hub puller from Amazon, but didn't need it. The hub just slid right off (Southern car since new!). Also bought the torque wrench recommended in this thread. Great tool at a great price.

Cory
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