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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 04-24-2003, 04:17 PM   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: bawlmore, md
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My Ride: 328i, s6, cr-v
front lower control arms and bushings

anyone replace the front control arms and bushings on an e46? i have a 99 328i and think i need to replace the front lower control arms and control arm bushings and need any advice on what kind of aftermarket products i can get and also if this is a diy install. is the only hard part getting the new bushings on the conrol arms?
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Old 04-26-2003, 09:03 AM   #2
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I just replaced that bushings on my car. Bought them at local dealer for around 50$/each. If control arms are not damaged, then you don't need to change them. You can try to diy, but floor jacks are not good enough, you will need more access to underneath. In process you will need to remove plastic cover under the engine, then triangular part of front suspension, then there are just 2 lugs on each bushing. And the hard part will be not getting on new bushing, but it will be getting off the old ones...
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Old 04-27-2003, 09:42 PM   #3
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Location: Denton, TX USA
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My Ride: 1999 323i

I'm in the middle of this, trying to get the ball joints and the other bolts off. Anyone tackled this that can give me some advice? I've tried just about everything but a crowbar to get these things loose!
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Old 05-01-2003, 07:26 PM   #4
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pickle fork...

i just did this a couple months ago

go to auto zone or whatever and get a pickle fork
(a tool for removing ball joints)

unscrew the rear (bushing)
unscrew the outer mount(wheel side)
and unscrew the middle one (serious pain is the rear)

once those are off hammer the pickle fork around that one you just had a hard time getting off (the middle one)
cut away the excess rubber around the ball joint (knife or sawzall)
then stomp on it so it will break free

this is where the control arm attaches to the frame
you are not going to hurt anything

eventually it will break free

install is easy after that

silicon the new bushing to slide onto the new control arm

getting the old one off is the hard part...

good luck
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Old 05-14-2003, 11:40 PM   #5
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Location: Parkland
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Don't use a pickle fork, or you may damage the ball joints... then you'll have to replace the control arms.

Just bang on the steering knuckle with a hammer, right where the ball joint goes through... you'll be suprised how easy they drop out of there.

When installing the thrust rod bushings, wet them with soapy water, and bang them on with a rubber mallet a couple times... they slip right on.... don't use grease to put them on.
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