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The BMW E46 ///M3 is the M version E46 and puts out an amazing 333 HP and 262 lb-ft of torque at stock specs! There are an amazing amount of modifications for both the coupe and convertible models so read up and get started modifying your cars today!

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Old 10-01-2012, 08:49 PM   #1
Registered User
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: NY
Posts: 99
My Ride: 98 Civic, 02 M3
differential advice

Hey guys, last weekend my pinion seal on my diff broke, and is leaking oil. Not a lot and its not bad. However when I checked to see if its full, it was but the oil from the diff on my hand had a lot of metal shavings in it. Also when I was driving the tires would chirp randomly high or low speeds only when accelerating and it doesn't matter if I would be driving around a turn or not. This is leaving me to believe the LSD is starting to go. I have 3 options as of now, buy a used diff with ~80k mi for 500 or buy a different used one with ~50k mi for 750 plus 125 for shipping and a 6 month warranty or rebuild the current one I have for x amount of money but I will cut down on labor costs because I will be removing and reinstalling the diff myself. My question for u guys is what option would you go with? I am on a limited budget but I also don't want to rebuild or buy another diff after another season. Also if u are around NY what shop would you recommend for a rebuild?

Forgot to add my car is an 02 m3 and I also checked into buying a performance diff but they are too expensive for me at the moment.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:02 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Frederick, MD
Posts: 79
My Ride: LSB M3
Look for a used one, for less than $500, or just rebuild it.... The metal shavings are not good, as you know.
2001 M3, LSB 6spd, purchased 6/09 with 25K miles.

Mods: Coyne Performance built ///M3
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:41 PM   #3
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: NY
Posts: 99
My Ride: 98 Civic, 02 M3
Originally Posted by dafoe View Post
Look for a used one, for less than $500, or just rebuild it.... The metal shavings are not good, as you know.
If I get a used one for less than 500 it will have high miles and need a rebuild anyway. I stopped by a different mechanic to get a 2nd opinion on it and he said that not to buy or rebuild the diff yet. He told me to change the diff fluid and get a magnetic drain plug and to check the center support bearing along with the guibo. He also said that if the pinion seal isn't leaking bad then don't worry about it yet. However if anyone can point me to a DIY for changing the pinion seal I want to read through it and see how much of a PITA it is.
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Old 10-26-2012, 01:50 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: chicago
Posts: 124
My Ride: m3
By any chance did your car sound like it was dragging somethingwhen letting the clutch pedal go
. Cause i think i have the same problem?
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