E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > E46 BMW > General E46 Forum

General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 04-14-2012, 11:11 PM   #21
glhx
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Nashville, Tennessee
Posts: 923
My Ride: 2002 BMW 330ci
and...............these guys know what they are doing.....they collectively have been down every road. Their advice is nothing to scoff at.
glhx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2012, 01:17 AM   #22
Stinger9
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: New York
Posts: 7,843
My Ride: '04 330Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by glhx View Post
above all get a cheap bmw scanner 1.4.0.....you will want to be able to scan your car by yourself...it is a pa soft knock off. mine paid for itself 3 times the first day...it reads and turns off lights
The way you can tell if your cooling system has been replaced or not could be.....look at the stick in the expansion tank.....if it is brown or aged it probably has not been touched.

The thermostat is electric and will never throw any codes....replace it because you could be over heating slightly and not know it causing pressure and heat.

The water pump is plastic and explodes internally....it throws plastic all over the cooling system and clogs it. Something you cannot inspect.

The radiator is aluminum crimped to plastic.....it goes out due to pressure and heat thermocycling. when it goes it goes.....you can inspect this if you take the expansion tank off to some extent by looking at white traces of fluid on the seams.

the expansion tank is just cheap....we replace these because they crack in a certain corner. some crack every 15000 miles. The bleeder screws are plastic and break and we replace them with metal. Replace the cap

If the car over heats 1 time the engine is done. that is why we stress on just maintaining it. The gauge is more like a switch....it will only read from 75 to 220....by the time you see it move the car is already overheating....shut it off and dont drive it.

.......change the transmission fluid.....it is broken down if it is an automatic and has never been changed....they call it lifetime....it has the consistency of water at 100,000 miles. the lubricating abilities become useless. Valvoline max life will be fine. i put 25 quarts of red fluid in mine and still didnt get all of the old stuff out. I did get 95% out and will change it again in 30,000 miles

...check your side trim and tail light lenses...cheap glue makes them fall off

I replaced the ccv on mine....it cause a vacuum leak and lets moisture into the intake.....at 100,000 it becomes a liability....they also get clogged in colder climates. They cause pressure on the valve cover gaskets when they go bad. The design is horrible...the location is more so...bavarian auto shows you how to change this on you tube.

Replace every vacuum line on the car....mine were deteriorated in every spot on the engine. including the fuel filter vac line....due to the high heat the car runs at.....which is why cooling system fails....I ran a mechanical thermostat.....and the $200 lifteime water pump.

I replaced the fuel filter and spark plugs. dont use bosch...get the ngk...my gas mileage was worse with bosch. ..


The oil filter housing gasket leaks....Mine was starting to....replaced it with the cooling system.....and on and on and on.

Common things to look for
front bushings
1 of the 2 fuel sending units go bad
shocks leaking
look for water under the spare tire
abs module goes bad (expensive to fix)
Hazard light switch wont work....look it up...easy to fix
frame cracks.....worst nightmare....common on 99 to 01 and still on 02, 03
o2 sensors (4 of them) get worse over time...they dont go bad but become ineffective giving lean conditions and bad mileage.
self leveling head light motors break
vanos seals
valve cover gasket.....

passenger side air bag sensor pad....dont replace it bypass it if it goes....there are 2 circuits....dont get the ebay one...make sure the bag stays active

I bought my car in january and found 80% of these problems. a lot of these cars fall apart after 100,000. I still like my 330ci....but i do work on it a lot.....more so than anything else ive owned.
You've got your arms pretty much around all this solidly, and I agree with most all of it. Would you agree that so much of the reason that you work more on this car than any other you have owned (true for me too) is that it is because of the fragile systems (sensors, electronics, engine control, emissions) that many of the other cars have not had? i.e. the extras on our cars that make them better than others? For instance the vanos is problematic, but gives amazing torque from low to high in combination with the DISA. We gain performance at the cost of more maintenance.
Stinger9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2012, 01:16 PM   #23
Noob330ci
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: portland
Posts: 19
My Ride: 2005 330 ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by glhx View Post
above all get a cheap bmw scanner 1.4.0.....you will want to be able to scan your car by yourself...it is a pa soft knock off. mine paid for itself 3 times the first day...it reads and turns off lights
The way you can tell if your cooling system has been replaced or not could be.....look at the stick in the expansion tank.....if it is brown or aged it probably has not been touched.

The thermostat is electric and will never throw any codes....replace it because you could be over heating slightly and not know it causing pressure and heat.

The water pump is plastic and explodes internally....it throws plastic all over the cooling system and clogs it. Something you cannot inspect.

The radiator is aluminum crimped to plastic.....it goes out due to pressure and heat thermocycling. when it goes it goes.....you can inspect this if you take the expansion tank off to some extent by looking at white traces of fluid on the seams.

the expansion tank is just cheap....we replace these because they crack in a certain corner. some crack every 15000 miles. The bleeder screws are plastic and break and we replace them with metal. Replace the cap

If the car over heats 1 time the engine is done. that is why we stress on just maintaining it. The gauge is more like a switch....it will only read from 75 to 220....by the time you see it move the car is already overheating....shut it off and dont drive it.

.......change the transmission fluid.....it is broken down if it is an automatic and has never been changed....they call it lifetime....it has the consistency of water at 100,000 miles. the lubricating abilities become useless. Valvoline max life will be fine. i put 25 quarts of red fluid in mine and still didnt get all of the old stuff out. I did get 95% out and will change it again in 30,000 miles

...check your side trim and tail light lenses...cheap glue makes them fall off

I replaced the ccv on mine....it cause a vacuum leak and lets moisture into the intake.....at 100,000 it becomes a liability....they also get clogged in colder climates. They cause pressure on the valve cover gaskets when they go bad. The design is horrible...the location is more so...bavarian auto shows you how to change this on you tube.

Replace every vacuum line on the car....mine were deteriorated in every spot on the engine. including the fuel filter vac line....due to the high heat the car runs at.....which is why cooling system fails....I ran a mechanical thermostat.....and the $200 lifteime water pump.

I replaced the fuel filter and spark plugs. dont use bosch...get the ngk...my gas mileage was worse with bosch. ..


The oil filter housing gasket leaks....Mine was starting to....replaced it with the cooling system.....and on and on and on.

Common things to look for
front bushings
1 of the 2 fuel sending units go bad
shocks leaking
look for water under the spare tire
abs module goes bad (expensive to fix)
Hazard light switch wont work....look it up...easy to fix
frame cracks.....worst nightmare....common on 99 to 01 and still on 02, 03
o2 sensors (4 of them) get worse over time...they dont go bad but become ineffective giving lean conditions and bad mileage.
self leveling head light motors break
vanos seals
valve cover gasket.....

passenger side air bag sensor pad....dont replace it bypass it if it goes....there are 2 circuits....dont get the ebay one...make sure the bag stays active

I bought my car in january and found 80% of these problems. a lot of these cars fall apart after 100,000. I still like my 330ci....but i do work on it a lot.....more so than anything else ive owned.
Thank you for the serious break down, this is what I was looking for. I have the next three days off and will start to tear into the car, I will check what I can check and replace what I cannot check. Thank you for the info.
Noob330ci is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2012, 01:21 PM   #24
Pierce1
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: LaConner WA.
Posts: 283
My Ride: 03 330xi
Checkaroo!!
Pierce1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2012, 01:54 PM   #25
glhx
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Nashville, Tennessee
Posts: 923
My Ride: 2002 BMW 330ci
I agree that the complicated systems that make it run is part of the reason.

I think the ccv is over complicated
Bmw now recommends their tranmission fluid be changed every 100,000

Once the problems are fixed for the most part the car will last. Like when you replace sometning such as the water pump.....you replace it with a better one. The same with front bushings and various other components. Its one of those things you will have to maintain and keep up with....the hazard light switch, when its glued back together will probably never come back apart, then the problem is solved.
glhx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-15-2012, 02:32 PM   #26
Stinger9
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: New York
Posts: 7,843
My Ride: '04 330Ci
Quote:
Originally Posted by Noob330ci View Post
Thank you for the serious break down, this is what I was looking for. I have the next three days off and will start to tear into the car, I will check what I can check and replace what I cannot check. Thank you for the info.
What are you talking about serious breakdown? Didn't you read the comprehensive list I included back in post #3 of this thread?
It has everything you might ever dream about!
Stinger9 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:19 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use