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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 05-03-2011, 12:40 PM   #101
aurelius
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worth clarifying...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pancho328i View Post
Strange that almost no one mentions that when you de-tension the tensioner there are two holes that align on it, you can put a pin/nail/allen wrench in there and it will hold it in that position.

You can then calmly set up your belt. When it is all set de-tension a little more, remove pin and slowly let the tensioner go back to press on the belt.

It's quite an elegant solution. It prevents you from having to push on the ratchet with one hand while trying to position the belt with the other.
Pancho328i
True but to clarify, the info quoted above only applies to the mechanical-style belt tensioner.

I don't recall if the a/c belt tensioner also has this feature but that might help in situations such as in post #96.

Further clarification:

The first photo below (copied from OP's post #4) is a hydraulic-style belt tensioner and requires an 8mm hex socket for de-tensioning. The 2nd photo correctly advocates using the nut built into the mechanical tensioner housing as an easier way to de-tension (vs the T50 bolt seen on the pulley itself).




Last edited by aurelius; 05-03-2011 at 12:43 PM.
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Old 06-12-2011, 01:23 PM   #102
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I just finished replacing the belts, tensioners and pulleys using this DIY on my wifes 2005 325xi.

I have a manual 323i and this was my first experience with changing something upfront with an auto tranny. Took a ride over to Bavauto and picked up all the parts and tools needed.

All went off without a hitch thanks to this DIY.

Thanks delmarco
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:38 PM   #103
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Ok, I have a 99 328i auto sedan. There is no fan or fan clutch. Is this a hold over from the E36 or did the PO take it all out. We just bought this car and it needs a cooling refresh. Are we F****ed into buying a new fan and fan clutch?
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Old 07-28-2011, 12:51 PM   #104
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For some reason i cant see any of the pictures for this DIY. They are all just coming up with the small boxes with red "x"'s in them. I right clicked on one and selected show picture, but no good. Can anyone else see the pictures?

My tensioner just started making noise this morning and I need to change it out tonight for a trip that I have coming up this weekend.

Thanks
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Old 07-28-2011, 01:48 PM   #105
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Well, I'm OK for now. I was able to see most of them on the repost of them (post #39) for some reason.
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Old 08-29-2011, 01:14 AM   #106
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Meh

I tried this today with little success. First I couldn't find the engine block drain plug - it's not obvious where it is on the 323. Then there was no way I could find to get the holder tool in place - no matter which way I turned it, the vanos or the fan shroud or the upper hose got in the way.

How safe is it to turn the fan nut to get a better angle? It was pushing back pretty hard (I have a 1/2 inch gash across my thumb to prove it) and I was afraid I was either going to snap something or do some damage to the surrounding area with the wrench, so I buttoned it all back up and decided to try again next week. I'm going back in with a bicycle headset wrench (which is the right size but much thinner), which may make the tight clearance less of an issue.

Anyone else found this process to be a pain?
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Old 08-29-2011, 03:17 AM   #107
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Don't have an auto but job well done! Really great DIY :-)
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Old 12-08-2011, 07:09 PM   #108
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E46 Mechanical Tensioner for Water Pump/Alternator Belt., Roller & Tensioner Assembly will fit i don't have one ???
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Old 01-10-2012, 04:02 PM   #109
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While I did my original replacement in 2006, my water pump broke on me today and I used this thread as a reference. I had a grinding / Squeeling noise for the past week on a cold startup and I thought is was the alternator. Why would it be my water pump since I replaced it 5.5 years ago and it has 34k on it? If I had paid more attention, the water pump was leaking a little antifreeze every night when parked. The main belt came off while driving and I noticed the battery light was on. I was thinking my alternator went but the bearing in the pump broke and the main belt slipped off (I am lucky). I purchase one locally and it was completed in just over an hour. Great write up!
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:06 PM   #110
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Nice Job! Well documented, and useful. Im gonna bump it for anybody who needs it.
Do my cooling sytem this weekend, but I wont be replacing the clutch fan...
going electric.
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Old 04-24-2012, 07:29 PM   #111
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I spent the most time looking for that elusive 5/8. Should have read the whole thread before I started this today. The first picture was what I was looking at. Got lost when I went to the second one, lol.

Still a great DIY.


Quote:
Originally Posted by aurelius View Post
True but to clarify, the info quoted above only applies to the mechanical-style belt tensioner.

I don't recall if the a/c belt tensioner also has this feature but that might help in situations such as in post #96.

Further clarification:

The first photo below (copied from OP's post #4) is a hydraulic-style belt tensioner and requires an 8mm hex socket for de-tensioning. The 2nd photo correctly advocates using the nut built into the mechanical tensioner housing as an easier way to de-tension (vs the T50 bolt seen on the pulley itself).



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Old 12-16-2012, 02:19 AM   #112
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This is what I need to do next!!!
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:25 AM   #113
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mine is different from DIY photos?? i have a M/T 99 how do i remove the belt on mine.. blue or red?

TIA..


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Old 02-14-2013, 05:22 PM   #114
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Did it myself today. You turn the red arrow!

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Old 03-29-2013, 11:42 PM   #115
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How the hell do you get the water pump locking tool to bolt onto the water pump?!? Space is so tight it is impossible unless I am missing something? been messing with it for nearly an hour
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Old 03-30-2013, 11:28 AM   #116
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Yeah I can't remember how I did it. The space is so fricken tight! If you can get a hold of one bolt and turn your wrench really fast you might eventually can get the fan loose. It's not on tight. Unless it's been tighten by the previous person that toughed it.
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:26 PM   #117
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I always just take the open end fan wrench and strike it few times with some quick blows of the heavy hammer in a clockwise direction and it eventually breaks loose. You just have to be careful to position the wrench so that when you hit it swiftly it doesn't hit the radiator hose end and crack the plastic.
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Old 05-01-2013, 01:23 PM   #118
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Great DIY! Always like to see a good write-up. Here's my question, I have an e46 328i made in 2000 with an M52TU engine. Car is MANUAL, however I apparently have a MECHANICAL FAN CLUTCH as opposed to the ELECTRIC FAN CLUTCH that everyone else with a MANUAL e46 seems to have. I'm puzzled, I have the MECHANICAL FAN CLUTCH removal tool on the way which sets my repairs back for this weekend. Any ideas, did someone swap the transmission in my car? Serial NO. to cross reference into RealOEM.com is "JR58309". Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-20-2013, 11:06 AM   #119
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I know this thread is a DIY for automatic cars, but I'm looking for the same kind of DIY for manual cars. I searched the forums but couldn't find it. Could a member perhaps link it in this thread or send me a link via private message?

Thanks
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Old 06-20-2013, 04:04 PM   #120
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 325ciRules?yes View Post
I know this thread is a DIY for automatic cars, but I'm looking for the same kind of DIY for manual cars. I searched the forums but couldn't find it. Could a member perhaps link it in this thread or send me a link via private message?

Thanks
i assume you have an electric fan since you ask for a manual DIY. autos have a mechanical fan, aka clutch fan. DIY is the same after removal of electric fan. see link below for removal of electric fan (begins on #21).

you may want to replace your pulleys at this time also. verify if you have manual or hydraulic tensioners. if you have manual tensioners you can always replace with hydraulic. i believe that is also mentioned in this DIY. also check out mango's post regarding pulleys for manual tensioners.

good luck.

http://www.bmw330ci.net/maintenance/completecoolant.php
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