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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 12-30-2006, 03:05 PM
beemermike beemermike is offline
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Lower Control Arm Bushing

I came accross a thread that had a link to very detailed instructions on how to replace these. I can no longer find it. I've been looking for some time now. I do have the Bentley book but I don't know if those instructions are as detailed as the ones I saw on here.

Can anyone supply me with that link.......PALEEEZE! thanks
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  #2  
Old 12-30-2006, 03:18 PM
Cliff Cliff is offline
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Is this the thread you're thinking of? link to thread
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  #3  
Old 12-30-2006, 03:25 PM
beemermike beemermike is offline
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Yes! Perfect! Thank you!
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  #4  
Old 01-01-2007, 08:59 AM
steve101b steve101b is offline
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control arm bushing repalcement

http://www.understeer.com/lcab.shtml
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2007, 09:11 AM
steve101b steve101b is offline
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control arm bushing repalcement

http://www.understeer.com/lcab.shtml
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  #6  
Old 01-02-2007, 09:29 AM
beemermike beemermike is offline
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OK cool I installed them with no problems. Grinding the inner bushing away from the carrier was pretty fun!! LOL. The inner one came right out with the gear puller. Drives so much tighter now.
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  #7  
Old 09-01-2008, 01:12 PM
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hockeynut hockeynut is offline
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Had mine replaced on Fri dealer said they were cracked and leaking - only 22k miles on the car but its 5 years old. Is that normal? Do they really wear over time rather than miles?
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  #8  
Old 09-01-2008, 01:22 PM
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Scott ZHP Scott ZHP is offline
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I have an 03 ZHP with 26k miles. Mine are still solid/tight.
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  #9  
Old 09-01-2008, 01:23 PM
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I have an 03 ZHP with 26k miles. Mine are still solid/tight.
Scott & Hockeynut

You should drive your cars once in awhile.

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  #10  
Old 09-01-2008, 03:13 PM
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hockeynut hockeynut is offline
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Scott & Hockeynut

You should drive your cars once in awhile.

ONCE in a while sounds about right. My car wasn't built for stop and go commuting and I refuse to put it through that pain Now a weekend jaunt through the Hill Country is another story completely!
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  #11  
Old 09-01-2008, 04:32 PM
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smolck smolck is online now
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If your car is exposed to hot and cold then yes they can crack over time. The design flaw is that the rubber expands and contracts with the change in temp. Eventually cracking will occur and then all your fluid goes out. This is why solid units like Powerflex are so much better IMO. And I truthfully believe 30-40k is about all you get from CAB's anyway.
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  #12  
Old 09-15-2008, 04:52 PM
JHitchcock JHitchcock is offline
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WEEELLLLLLL!! I guess I should be happy with the 228 k miles I got from mine. Just replaced them yesterday and OMG what a difference. Like a new car again. And Scott ZHP is right - you guys need to drive your cars more often. It's call the perfect DRIVING machine - not the perfect parked machine.
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  #13  
Old 09-15-2008, 05:58 PM
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I guess I should be happy with the 228 k miles I got from mine. .
I am willing to bet my annual salary (don't get excited, it ain't that much) that you didn't get 228k from them. They were on the car, but they died a LOOOOONG time ago!
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  #14  
Old 07-01-2009, 03:21 PM
Gfresh Gfresh is offline
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Lower control arm bushings E46

I have had all my brakes and rotors redone, four new tires and my oil changed. my steering wheel still shimmies on occasion. I am currently due for my II Inspection. I was told by BMW that I need to replace my lower control arm bushings too for $488.00 and $149.00 for alignment. I am going to have the work done at a place in Phx that is way cheap then the dealership. I will repost the results after this is done. I am going to have it do on Fri. July 3rd and will repost on the fourth. can hear a clunking noise when I brake, on hit curb lips. Looking to get it done as CHEAP as possible while keeping the integrity of the vehicle.
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  #15  
Old 07-01-2009, 05:08 PM
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can hear a clunking noise when I brake, on hit curb lips. Looking to get it done as CHEAP as possible while keeping the integrity of the vehicle.
More than likely this is actually your control arms (the ball joints) rather than the control arm bushings. The bushings no doubt are bad, but the noise you describe is not indicative of the failing CAB.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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  #16  
Old 07-02-2009, 07:53 AM
3beemers 3beemers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hockeynut View Post
Had mine replaced on Fri dealer said they were cracked and leaking - only 22k miles on the car but its 5 years old. Is that normal? Do they really wear over time rather than miles?
It is pretty much the kind of road you have and the way you drive through it. Because of the DIY on my control arms and bushings, I now negotiate pot holes almost like a grandma style of driving particularly in the industrial areas.

Regards
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  #17  
Old 07-06-2009, 07:16 AM
Gfresh Gfresh is offline
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Ok, I had the Control arm bushing replaced for a cool $272.00 from what i was told by a BMW Machanic only 1 one out 10 Bimmers need to even have an alignment after this type of repair because the repair never affect or includes messing with any of the alignment controls. Bimmer just tries to upsale you but it is always suggested. I had the machanic drive the car and givve me his professional opinion and he said the car was fine. the car now drives tigher and doesn't clunk! car still vibrates mildly after speeds of 80 to 100+ I was told by BMW that I just need a ROAD FORCE BALANCE for around 200.00... ... I called Discount Tire and they said they can do it for $13.00 A TIRE! although they addmitted it will take a longer time to do it so it is done correctly, fifty dollars as opposed to two hundred sounds better to me. *happier driver*
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  #18  
Old 07-23-2009, 09:59 AM
waq999 waq999 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gfresh View Post
Ok, I had the Control arm bushing replaced for a cool $272.00 from what i was told by a BMW Machanic only 1 one out 10 Bimmers need to even have an alignment after this type of repair because the repair never affect or includes messing with any of the alignment controls. Bimmer just tries to upsale you but it is always suggested. I had the machanic drive the car and givve me his professional opinion and he said the car was fine. the car now drives tigher and doesn't clunk! car still vibrates mildly after speeds of 80 to 100+ I was told by BMW that I just need a ROAD FORCE BALANCE for around 200.00... ... I called Discount Tire and they said they can do it for $13.00 A TIRE! although they addmitted it will take a longer time to do it so it is done correctly, fifty dollars as opposed to two hundred sounds better to me. *happier driver*
I was also told to replace the control arm bushing by the dealer recently for about $600. Can you give me your mechanic's contact info (Im located in the phx area too )

Last edited by waq999; 07-23-2009 at 10:06 AM.
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  #19  
Old 08-25-2009, 05:55 PM
mavrik101 mavrik101 is offline
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me too

I'm in phoenix also, and I'd like the name.
Had a front end alignment done, and was told for a mere $500 more, they would replace the control arm bushings, and not charge me for another alignment!! Nice guys.
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  #20  
Old 08-25-2009, 06:24 PM
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and not charge me for another alignment!! Nice guys.
Especially since an alignment is not required after a control arm bushing change. The mounts have positive locator pins in the frame rail, you can only put them back one way.
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now, go burn your Man Card, and buy yourself a Camry....
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  #21  
Old 08-25-2009, 06:56 PM
jengirlie jengirlie is offline
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I was told that I needed my Control arm bushings replaced, for around $600 + $189 for an alignment + 2 new tires. I took it to another place and they said that nothing was wrong with my bushings and that it was just a belt in my tires and all i needed to do was get new tires and an alignment.
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  #22  
Old 08-25-2009, 07:00 PM
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Originally Posted by jengirlie View Post
I was told that I needed my Control arm bushings replaced, for around $600 + $189 for an alignment + 2 new tires. I took it to another place and they said that nothing was wrong with my bushings and that it was just a belt in my tires and all i needed to do was get new tires and an alignment.
Yet another instance of "trusted" mechanics being full of crap. They should know an alignment isn't needed. See my blog, I wrote an article about this crap
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  #23  
Old 08-25-2009, 09:58 PM
Rick Van Bimmer Rick Van Bimmer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hockeynut View Post
ONCE in a while sounds about right. My car wasn't built for stop and go commuting and I refuse to put it through that pain Now a weekend jaunt through the Hill Country is another story completely!
My 06 has just 21,000KM (13k mi) because I can't stand driving a driving machine in bumper to bumper city traffic. I use my BMW for longer drives, holidays, and for times when I just want to go out and find a quiet road and wind it up in the lower gears.

For city traffic, I have a Toyota with automatic trans.

I guess the downside of this is a very high cost per mile, as time is the number one determinant of depreciation. Now I wonder about deteriorating rubber parts, although I always garage the car.
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  #24  
Old 08-27-2009, 09:45 AM
bimmer4828 bimmer4828 is offline
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Lower Control Arm Bushing

Good Afternoon,
I dropped my car at the dealership this morning and my service advisor has called to let me know that the lower control arm bushings need to be replaced and that this will cost around $640.00. As a female, I don't know much about cars, but can anyone tell me how many lower control arm bushings are actually on my car? And, do I need to have these replaced right now or will the vehicle function normally without replacement? Equally, I live in Houston so if anyone can offer advice as to where I can find a shop that will replace these at a cheaper cost, that would be great. He also told me that I have to replace both of the rear tires ($350.00) or my car will not pass inspection. Thanks!!!
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  #25  
Old 08-27-2009, 11:43 AM
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mawana mawana is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmer4828 View Post
Good Afternoon,
I dropped my car at the dealership this morning and my service advisor has called to let me know that the lower control arm bushings need to be replaced and that this will cost around $640.00. As a female, I don't know much about cars, but can anyone tell me how many lower control arm bushings are actually on my car? And, do I need to have these replaced right now or will the vehicle function normally without replacement? Equally, I live in Houston so if anyone can offer advice as to where I can find a shop that will replace these at a cheaper cost, that would be great. He also told me that I have to replace both of the rear tires ($350.00) or my car will not pass inspection. Thanks!!!
TX is an inspection state? I used to live in PA - another inspection state! Dealers use the inspection scare card to get people to pay through the roof for repairs..

Anyway, for bushings, get the pre-pressed ones ($88 from oembimmerparts) and find any mechanic with good reviews. Doesn't necessary have to be one who works on BMW's but that's recommended.

For tires, check ebay, good deals there and you will pass inspection...
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