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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 04-17-2013, 08:14 PM   #1
yaboc
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rotors + brakes + bleeding diy questions

hi

im doing rotors and brakes diy all around including changing frozen caliper on pass front.

i started with pass front and spent like 2 hrs trying to get the rotor 'alignment' hex screw out and ended up stripping it and after unsuccessful attempts to get it out i decided to just drill through it and be done with it.

is it okay to not have it there ?

also im at the part where i need to replace the caliper and move the brake line from old caliper to a new one. what would be the procedure where i would avoid getting air in the system ?

unscrew it from the caliper -> hang it on the shock spring -> let a bit of fluid come out and catch it in a pan -> screw it onto new caliper -> open the master cylineder cap top it off and bleed the new caliper ?

i dont want to get air into the systerm. thanks

Thanks
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:22 PM   #2
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As soon as you loosen the brake line from the caliper you will introduce air into the system. You just need to bleed it afterwards. Nothing hard about it. I did a 330 front caliper conversion on the 323 this weekend along with SS lines and a pad/rotor change on the back with SS lines as well. I used my trusty bavauto pressure bleeder and had the brakes bled in about 20 minutes for all 4 corners. I also did a fluid flush

No, you don't HAVE to have the rotor screw, but it sure makes it easier.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:41 PM   #3
yaboc
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thanks jakksfor20

i dont have the device. can i just pump the breaks until the fluid comes out also do i need have the master cylinder open while doing it ?

i will try this


Last edited by yaboc; 04-17-2013 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:51 PM   #4
yaboc
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another thing is i dont know what kind of brake fluid is currently in and the guy at advance auto parts said i need to know because it would be bad to mix it. is there anything i need to watch out for or can get any brake fluid ?
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:54 PM   #5
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Important thing is don't let the brake fluid drain from the line once you take off the caliper, if it does you have to take the car to the dealer to bleed the system!
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Old 04-17-2013, 10:00 PM   #6
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Word of caution, brake fluid wrecks paint.
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Old 04-17-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lszlszx View Post
Important thing is don't let the brake fluid drain from the line once you take off the caliper, if it does you have to take the car to the dealer to bleed the system!
If you drain the entire reservoir you would have to take it to the dealer, but the amount that comes out when you are changing the caliper would not drain it. I replaced a caliper in less than a minute and its not that much.

Buy what the cap says on the reservoir, OP. Recommend doing a flush since you have one bad caliper already. Would take a while longer with doing it the manual way, which is why I would suggest buying a pressure bleeder.
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Old 04-18-2013, 04:36 AM   #8
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You'll need a helper to do it the manual way. Find someone who has done it before to show you the ropes. It's not complicated, but certain things have to happen a certain way and in a certain order.

Last edited by g-rex; 04-18-2013 at 04:37 AM.
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Old 04-18-2013, 08:01 AM   #9
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It's safest to use a pressure bleeder, especially if you have high mileage. The issue with having a buddy stomp on the brake pedal is if your car has higher mileage on it, the master brake cylinder has a smooth core where the seals normally move when you push on the brakes. When you use the manual step on the pedal bleeding method, you're typically pushing the seals into the corroded section of the master cylinder (where the seals don't normally go), which starts tears in the seals, which means a new master cylinder sometime. I recall Porsche in their 993 factory manual cautioning against using the pedal only method of bleeding on higher mileage vehicles.

As mentioned above, as long as you don't drain the brake fluid reservoir, which could let air into the system, you don't need to fret about taking it to the dealer. One trick I've used when disconnecting brake lines is to put plastic saran-type wrap over the top of the reservoir under the cap, so the reservoir is sealed. This reduces fluid dripping from the hose, although you'll still get some drips, and will still have to bleed the brakes.
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Old 04-18-2013, 08:31 AM   #10
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You can use the gravity as well.. no need to stomp on the brake (quick way). Its more time consuming but it works well, just let the fluid drain from the bleeding vent and keep topping up the container.

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Old 04-19-2013, 01:42 PM   #11
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rotors + brakes + bleeding diy questions

I have one of these, pulls them stubborn rotor bolts out like butter every time. Drilling it really sucks.
http://products.kleintools.com/70220.html


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Old 04-19-2013, 02:27 PM   #12
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If you are able to remove the remnants of the old rotor retaining bolt, be sure to use a dab of anti-seize on the new one so you'll be able to get it out next time you change rotors!
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Old 04-22-2013, 01:54 PM   #13
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I agree with the anti seize 100%, I also put a dab on the wheel bolts too.
Anyway, I recently replaced all my calipers. I removed the old ones and let all 4 lines sit for days with containers under them to allow all the old brake fluid to drain out so that I would have all new fluid in my new calipers.
After installing the new calipers I filled the resivoir with the latest gratest Castrol brake fluid, and let them gravity bleed for several hours, then had my daughter pump the brakes and bled the remaining air out.
It is true that you should instruct the person pumping the pedal to not push it past the position that it normally travels to when the driving the car. If you do, you may start to notice the master cylinder seals slowly fail in the miles thereafter...
It will be a fading/sinking pedal as the fluid passes around the failing seals.
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Old 04-27-2013, 08:40 AM   #14
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I couldn't find anything that stated "do not let the pedal got to the floor" while researching "how to bleed your brakes". I understand there could be a potential high spot on the master cylinder piston but one would think that it is protected well enough and not have severe coroding or rust. They are not as exposed as they used to be. I would also be afraid the person pushing the pedal would inadvertently release the pedal mid stroke to avoid going too far and pull air back into the system.

Also when you change your pads and need to pump the brakes back up before you move, do you really only push the pedal down an inch at a time?
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Old 04-27-2013, 08:53 AM   #15
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Quote:
Also when you change your pads and need to pump the brakes back up before you move, do you really only push the pedal down an inch at a time?
After you've changed your pads, with the system all sealed up, you can press/pump the brakes as hard as you want to move the pads out towards the rotor. I'll push hard for maybe 3 seconds, release, and do that a few times.
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Old 04-27-2013, 04:54 PM   #16
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Sansho

Thats what I do too but it goes against whats posted above
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:50 PM   #17
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Thats what I do too but it goes against whats posted above
If you are bleeding your brakes by the friend-press-on-the-brake-pedal method, then pressing no more than an inch is good to prevent pushing the seals into the corrosion in the brake cylinder. However, once the system is all sealed up after bleeding the brakes, you can push as hard as you want, and that won't cause any issues.
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Old 04-29-2013, 05:23 PM   #18
Rotten Robbie
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It is a best practice thing to not force the brake pedal to travel past where it normally does during normal driving.
I always coach the person pushing the pedal first, and then instruct them 3 pumps hold then and release when I tell them.
If they release the pedal while you have the blead screw open you'll just have to bleed that air out too, but it is not a big problem.

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Old 04-29-2013, 07:16 PM   #19
Imanewbie
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rotors + brakes + bleeding diy questions

Many will disagree and blah blah blah. If your scratching your head because of a stuck and striped rotor bolt, take a heavy/sledge hammer and whack the rotor from behind in the opposite side of the bolt. She comes flying right off and it's much nicer and fast compared to drilling.


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Old 05-06-2013, 12:47 AM   #20
2002GreenBMW
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rotors + brakes + bleeding diy questions

I literally just did this and pushed the pedal to the floor while the front brakes were draining but the rears were sealed, do I need to take it to the dealer or whatever I was reading? And what would they be replacing??


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