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Go Back   E46Fanatics > Tuning & Tech > Suspension & Braking

Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 04-15-2013, 08:47 AM   #1
Jat007
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Front Struts for e46 Questions

My 99' 323i e46 sedan will need front Struts soon. What do experts on this site recommend? I am not taking the car to the track or anything like that... I just want to restore the ride like when it was 100k mile ago... I am also in school right now so, budget is also a concerns of mine.

Would you recommend struts that are sold on Fleasbay? Some do have lifetime warranty on them...

Please let me know what would you buy and keep budget in mind as well.

Thanks!
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:51 AM   #2
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yes. since its not a component related to the reliability of your engine running nor its an electrical sensor that is super sensitive and requires OEM parts, I'd go with anything, really. remember, you get what you pay for. so if you spend less now, expect early replacement, unlike oem which can hold up to 100,000 miles.
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Old 04-15-2013, 08:57 AM   #3
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:25 AM   #4
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If shocks are original, needs those too.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:56 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jat007 View Post
I just want to restore the ride like when it was 100k mile ago...
Just an FYI - replacing front struts alone will not meet your expectations.

I understand that you are on a budget but to make the ride feel like it did when it was brand new would require replacing struts, shocks, springs, mounts, bushings, etc...

Struts, shocks, & springs on all four corners will go a long way though. I wouldn't do fronts only - my concern would be potential handling problems (more so in emergency maneuvering situations than typical daily driving).
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:03 AM   #6
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I got Monroe shocks and struts and it is def better than blown oem.
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:08 AM   #7
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For the OEM style ride the best is sachs. Its the direct OE replacement. The PO installed these on my car but they do wear out quickly. Look into bilsteins. I have rear shocks by them and drove a friends e46 with bilstein all around and it drives amazing

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Old 04-15-2013, 10:54 AM   #8
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I replaced my rears with Sachs too. They go out quick? Really? Are you lowered? Mine feel good still, I think. I haven't done the front yet
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:46 AM   #9
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The fronts are original struts as far as I can tell. The rear are KYB's as far as I know, KBYs were not the oem stock rear shocks. However, one of the rear springs cracked/broke at the bottom of the coil... So, I will be doing all 4 corners.. I have about 174K on the car at the moment and I don't want to spend a whole lot... This is my daily driver for roughly about 10 miles a day and I'm not hard on my car at all...

Thanks everyone for your input!!
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:56 PM   #10
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I am thinking that I have the standard suspension - how can I tell?

Help!

Thanks.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:10 PM   #11
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If struts are original you may be able locate a part number on one of them which would indicate whether you have sport suspension or not.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:13 PM   #12
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I just put Koni Yellow Sports on my '00 323i. The problem is they weren't cheap and a DIY on struts is tough so I paid a guy to do them. Shocks are easy. You'll also need an alignment. Don't cheap out on this. Struts and suspension bits are super important.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:19 PM   #13
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You can get Monroe strut and shocks at AdvanceAutoParts. They have a lifetime warranty and are offering a rebate right now until April 30,2013.

If you are doing shocks, and struts, then replace mounts as well.

If you are a student on a budget, you can get all 4 corners for about $200 with discounts and rebates.
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Old 04-15-2013, 01:57 PM   #14
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I've used Monroe before on my other cars and I was very surprised how well they performed... Tell will tell as I only have them in for 10K miles on a standard sedan. As one member "Stiggles" point it out, the Meyle front strut for $81.99 isn't too bad if you're doing just the strut. You're are right though, I will need to do the coil springs and the strut mounts along with a new struts.

As for the wheel alignment, I did purchased a "lifetime" alignment from Firestone a year ago.. So I am covered there..

If I go with the Monroes, can I use a different brand for the strut mount or I have to use the same brand? Where would you recommend for me to buy the coil spring for the fronts?

Thank you!
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Old 04-15-2013, 03:29 PM   #15
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Yeah they were replaced at 88k and I have 160k on the clock now and the car is loose and jumping all over the road

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Old 04-15-2013, 03:54 PM   #16
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Taveet 330i Dallas - What do you have on your car now?? Double whammo for me since I ahve low-profile wheels on mine, so she's jumping all over the roads even on flat straight roads (-:
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:00 PM   #17
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I have sachs front with bilstein rears. Rears have new oem springs. Fronts are springs from 88k along with the sachs shocks. I just prefer the tighter steering response but its a personal thing

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Old 04-15-2013, 04:48 PM   #18
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You don't have to go with the same brand of strut or shock mounts.

If you go with the Monroe from AdvanceAutoParts, you will get new shock washes, and nuts.
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:53 PM   #19
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Old 04-15-2013, 05:02 PM   #20
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Ok, I just pulled the trigger by buying all new Coil Springs (Lesjofors) for all 4 corners. I will do some more research on the Struts & Shocks to buy next. I might go with BMWCaptain's recommendation on Monroe.

What would you guys recommend for Strut/Shock mounts?

Thanks guys!!
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