E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki
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things about E36's, funny but true!
The coolant pump (water pump) will either fail or start leaking around 75k.
The upper radiator hose from the thermostat housing will break.
The cooling system may require several bleed sessions to completely rid the system of air. The coolant low indication will appear on the OBC.
The VANOS rattles like pebbles in a tin can.
The valve train sounds like a diesel after sitting for a few days or on cold morning start ups use thicker oil (15-50).
The brake pad sensors do not require replacement unless the brake pad symbol is illuminated in the instrument cluster.
The brake circuit failure indication on the OBC is cleared by replacing the switch located above the brake pedal.
The clutch pedal squeaks and moves laterally due to worn bushings. Replace with Delrin AF bushings.
The clutch slave cylinder is a high fail component. Replace it and bleed the clutch system before dropping large cash on a clutch job.
Flush and bleed the brake fluid every two years.
Flush and bleed the cooling system every two years. Use BMW coolant and distilled water 50/50 mix.
Replace the thermostat housing with an aluminum aftermarket.
There are no adverse effects of using synthetic fluids at any mileage.
The shifter can be replaced with a short shift kit using OEM BMW parts.
Wheel offset means the number of millimeters the mounting surface is from the centerline of the rim.
Buy a quality clicker type torque wrench.
Buy a Bentley Manual.
Batteries fail when the weather turns cold or when the glove box light doesn't shut off due to poor fitment.
Belt tensioner and idler pullies fail and make hideous noises.
Buy a set of Blitz Rhino ramps.
Mobil 1 synthetic engine oil is available at Wal-Mart for cheap.
Distilled water is in the water aisle at the grocery store.
Buy a quality floor jack.
Buy quality jack stands.
Buy wheel chocks.
Buy a fire extinguisher.
Torque wheel bolts to spec. to avoid rotor warp.
Establish a good relationship with the parts guy at the local BMW dealer or with your mechanic.
Tip said parts guy.
Clutch Judder is normal in traffic jams due to hot clutch plates
Dont buy Lexus type rear lights, its not big nor clever!
Does my car have LSD? Solution; get in some dirt or sandy pavement(as not to abuse the car) and spin the damn tires, or jack the rear up and turn one rear wheel and see if the other spins the same way.
Yellowing and faded plastic headlight covers can be restored by using Mequiars #10 and #17 Clear Plastic Cleaner and Polish
The dealer will try to screw you! If there are no independent bimmer mechanics in your area, leave a jar of Vaseline or KY with the dealership service manager along with your keys
The check engine light is USUALLY caused by the O2 sensor but there may be other reasons for it to be set off
The little O with ridges around it are the brake pad sensors. They are in the LF and RR
The e36 does have a 'natural' lean when driverless and looked at from behind
DTM tips were invented by Osama bin Laden....don't support terrorism
OBD2 cars cannot be 'chipped' there must be a software download, i.e. you have to send your ECU to have it programmed or have a "shark injector" to do this.
Chips and 'sharked' downloads merely advance the ignition timing and will not make your car beat a Corvette
E36's are not drag cars, due to their diff ratios. If an Integra beats you, your stoopid azz deserves it, buck up and buy a new rear differential with Limited Slip
Larger rims, speaker boxes & large tail pipes will add weight and slow down your car although you think louder means it's moving faster
When you hear a "thunk" from the middle of the car, it's probably the Guibo. (flex disk)
When you hear a "thunk" from the back of the car, it's probably the Rear Shock Mounts. (RSMs)
If it's cold and you have trouble starting the car, you probably have a cold starting problem.
$tealer survival list includes: credit card with high credit limit, ETK & TIS, an attorney, and Vaseline or KY your choice (they make a nice warming gel now)
Q: I just changed my spark plugs now I'm getting rough idle.
A: Gee, could it be the new Platinum+4 spark plugs you just put in?
RTFM - Read the Farking Manual!
The *ding* you hear when it is cold out means It IS cold out, duh! (dings at 38F)
325/328/M3 exhausts are interchangeable. 318 are not. The M3 exhaust IS HEAVY!!!
Buy an genuine BMW water pump
All most all shifter rods (not the linkage, but the rod itself) are interchangable among BMWs Euro M3 & Z3 shifters are short throw shifters
Have all rear bushings inspected regularly on 325's
Oil the seats regularly
If your seat stops reclining, the plastic gear has broken inside, look on line order it for $40
There is a moonroof available but it is very expensive & adds more weight to the car = less hp
If you want nitrous, you've bought the wrong car but can be done, you can also put sand in your crank case one is just a little faster at destroying your motor than the other...
The value of a car does not increase with mods by any logical amount
It's a BMW and more than likely its not a rare one...It will depreciate
Yes, red cars ARE faster
This car will NOT get you laid, you do have to have some personality & a good bar tab
A faulty seatbelt sensor will cause the SRS warning light to stay on
Not closing the gas cap all the way will cause an engine warning light just about every time.
Once you take the dashboard apart you will NEVER get the glove box door to line up perfectly again.
Before disconnecting the battery. Make sure you write down the radio code or have the radio code card that comes in the owners manual.
The most popular setup of aftermarket name brand shocks for the E36 are H&R springs w/ Bilstien shocks/struts.
The tire in the trunk helps to maintain a near 50-50 weight ratio. If you decide to auto-X the car, you may want to leave the spare tire in the car & just run less amounts of gas in the tank.
For OBDI E36's you can use the pedal trick to get the fault codes. For OBDII, you will need a code reader.
If you find oil in your spark plug well, most likely cause is that your valve cover gasket is leaking.
You can "double lock" your doors by turning your key all the way to the right from the drivers side door and all the way left from the passenger side door.
The two significant problems on the early 318's were the profile gasket (which is not a head gasket) and the Bad Valeo alternators
Pulsating headlights usually indicates your voltage regulator or alternator needs changing
The profile gasket affected only the M42 engines
The 318's have had 3 separate belt and pulley configurations between the M42 and M44
Cold air intakes do not work as well for the 318, the MAFs don't recognize it.
Altezza tailights were created by Satan himself...do not support raw evil
Chips do work, but the wont make your car wheelie like herbie the luv bug it will simply increase your ignition timing for a more robust/smoother torque curve
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