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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 12-03-2016, 09:10 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Rockville, MD
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DIY: Replacing front control arm balljoints

I've seen a bunch of people buying new control arms to simply replace the only balljoint on the arm. I didn't want to spend $100+ on an arm when you can buy e36 all metal balljoints for much cheaper and press them in.

These are the balljoints used in my DIY

Step 1: remove the control arm from the car, I won't be covering this part

Step 2: make relief cuts into the bottom of the balljoint cover and pop it off

Step 3: Remove the balljoint from the rubber isolating insert. First remove the rubber boot at the top to keep it out of the way as it pressed through out the bottom. One of my control arms was worn out and it came out easy, the other one I had to press the joint out, they both were fused to the rubber and tore it up on the way out You might be able to pry it out with a screw driver if you're lucky. Get creative.

Step 4: now you're left with this open hole. You're going to want to make relief cuts into the side of it ( you might make some marks into the control arm but thats fine, one or two won't hurt it. ) After you make the relief cuts start to hammer it from the side to collapse it inside the hole. After you make some progress you can hammer this metal sleeve out the bottom

Step 5: Take your new balljoint and press it into the arm

Step 6: You're all done, reinstall the arm to the car.

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