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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 04-24-2013, 10:39 AM   #1
MiniXP
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: NC
Posts: 345
My Ride: 08 335i & 01 325xi
How many miles have you gotten out of your axles/CV Joints?

Since I'm replacing both front axles this weekend, I've been reading a bunch of threads about them.

I thought I would try to get a thread going where we can see how long people got out of their axles and what brand and other mods they have. I bought my car used, so I only know info for one of my failed axles that I previously replaced. I'm going to be replacing both with GKN Loebro axles from Turner due to completely ripped outer CV boots.

Hopefully if this thread takes off we can get a feel whether there are any reliable cheaper alternatives to oem or loebro axles.

Axle Brand: Rebuilt OEM
Life: 60,000mi/5years
Lowered: Yes. (Bilstein Sports and H&R sports)
Failure: Outer CV boot torn

The other axle on my car looks like it had been replaced with OEM before I bought the car at 88k and the boot is now torn at 150k.
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Old 04-24-2013, 11:42 AM   #2
mcopenha
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 137
My Ride: '01 325xi, '73 2002
brand: oem
life: 129,000 miles
lowered: no
failure: both boots torn. Probably would have lasted longer had I replaced the boots in time.

brand: Cardone
life: 30,000 miles
lowered: no
failure: one side with torn boot, other side was clicking. These turned out to be a very bad choice. I don't think replacing the boots would have done much. There was internal failure in the joint.

brand: GKN
life: 5000 miles so far
lowered: no
failure: none yet, but my expectations are high.
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Old 04-24-2013, 08:49 PM   #3
bmwporschefan
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 106
My Ride: 2001 330xi
Mine are original with 140,000 miles. I have replaced the outer boots a couple of times and at the same time disassembled the joint to clean, re-grease, and re-assemble.
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Old 04-25-2013, 07:53 AM   #4
MiniXP
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: NC
Posts: 345
My Ride: 08 335i & 01 325xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwporschefan View Post
Mine are original with 140,000 miles. I have replaced the outer boots a couple of times and at the same time disassembled the joint to clean, re-grease, and re-assemble.
Do you know the mileage you replaced the boots at? I know a lot of people just replace the boots rather than the whole axle, so it would be useful to know the milage people are getting out of boots as well.
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:09 AM   #5
bmwbob89
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Newburyport Ma,
Posts: 538
My Ride: M-5 325 X3 528 740
The replacement boots are much better quality than the originals. If you catch them before a lot of crap gets in there you can just replace the boots. Just the outer's go bad from the front wheels turning and pulling on them. The inner's just need the clamps tightened as the leak.
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:11 AM   #6
customisbetter
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: East Lansing
Posts: 255
My Ride: 02 325xi
Axle Brand: Stock OEM
Life: Since 02, still going at 167k miles!
Lowered: Nope, stock suspension
Failure: none
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Old 04-25-2013, 03:00 PM   #7
MiniXP
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: NC
Posts: 345
My Ride: 08 335i & 01 325xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwbob89 View Post
The replacement boots are much better quality than the originals. If you catch them before a lot of crap gets in there you can just replace the boots. Just the outer's go bad from the front wheels turning and pulling on them. The inner's just need the clamps tightened as the leak.
Yea, unfortunately mine are split open 360 degrees around and I'm getting vibrations under acceleration, so most likely the damage has already been done.
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Old 04-25-2013, 08:24 PM   #8
bmwporschefan
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 106
My Ride: 2001 330xi
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiniXP View Post
Do you know the mileage you replaced the boots at? I know a lot of people just replace the boots rather than the whole axle, so it would be useful to know the milage people are getting out of boots as well.
I believe the first time was at or around 100k. I just did them last week at 140k.
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Old 04-26-2013, 01:55 AM   #9
CrazyHarry
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Laguna Niguel
Posts: 12
My Ride: 04 325xi, 90 325iX
Brand: OEM
Life: 158,XXX miles
Failure, Driver side failed due to a bad bearing the shook the cv to pieces. Replaced with GKN at 138,XXX. Passenger axle factory still going strong.
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Old 04-26-2013, 03:15 AM   #10
TR4G-
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Baltimore
Posts: 1,138
My Ride: '01 325xi
How many miles have you gotten out of your axles/CV Joints?

Haven't had to replace my axels, but my front outer boots have failed at 10k miles (left) and 6k miles (right)

Lowered: yes


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Old 04-27-2013, 02:35 PM   #11
SCHURO
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Helena Montana
Posts: 1
My Ride: BMW 325Xi
My outer boots are split open at 88,000 miles and I have a CV Joint clicking. I'm disappointed at the short lifespan of these boots. I'm sure they are original equipment. Could it be that the sub-zero winters have shortened their lifespan?
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:26 PM   #12
emgee
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: new york
Posts: 194
My Ride: 3 pedal 2005 325xi
oem 103xxx miles, the only reason why i replaced them was because my boots were torn and i had no idea how long they had been that way.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:40 AM   #13
MiniXP
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:23 PM   #14
wangus
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Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: holly springs, nc
Posts: 21
My Ride: 325ix
How many miles have you gotten out of your axles/CV Joints?

Axle brand: OEM
lowered: NO
Mileage: 70k
Symptoms: outer boots torn and didn't catch it for some time.... Dont know how long they were torn for. Figured I would just drive it under they failed

2 years later, at 87k replaced w a set from fcp Groton


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