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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 08-09-2014, 03:44 PM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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Removing the Rear Brake Caliper Guide bolt

Hi,

I decided to change my rear brake pads today (2003 530i, 44000 Miles) since they are almost worn out. The wear indicator has not turned on yet.

I read all the DIY's out there thinking this would be an easy one...Well, since the morning I am struggling to remove the 7mm Hex Head caliper guide bolt, specifically the bottom one.

The problem is that the lower control arm is right in front of the dust boot that hides the 7mm bolt. And that prevents the hex bit from going straight into the dust boot into the head of the bolt. The hex bit is always at an angle and thus I cannot spin the bolt as the bit is spinning a little in the head of the bolt and will not catch. I dont want to strip out the 7mm hex bolt head.

I even tried Bluebees's method of using a 6" and a 10" extension bar for my 3/8" socket which is outlined in pictures in post 216 of this thread: http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...=266819&page=3

I tried swivel/universal joints, I even tried to lift the lower control arm by using a scissor jack. That at least allowed the bit to go in straight and catch the head of the bolt. But as soon as I attach an extension bar, the control arm comes in the middle and the bar goes in at an angle.

Anybody have any suggestions as to what else I can try?

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 08-09-2014, 04:24 PM
Wgosma Wgosma is offline
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guide bolt

Encountered similar thing 2 months ago on my car but was able to make it work with socket type hex bit. Anyhow, one other thought is to use a simple 90 degree hex wrench and if you can't get that in there 'straight' then cut it off to shorten the end; use a brass hammer if need be to break bolt loose - aside from that I'm out of ideas.

Good luck
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  #3  
Old 08-09-2014, 04:45 PM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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I did try the small hex wrench as well. I am gonna try hitting that small wrench a little bit harder to see if it breaks the bolt seize. The little wrench does go into the bolt head perfectly.


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  #4  
Old 08-09-2014, 04:51 PM
Wgosma Wgosma is offline
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Whack it hard or figure how to lengthen and get leverage...as I recall the torque spec for these little bolts is pretty high.


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  #5  
Old 08-09-2014, 04:55 PM
damisco damisco is offline
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Be careful with those bolts man this is so easy you are probably not using the right tools I use an extension as someone said with the socket I bought from bava auto sports it can be used for the oil drain plug too very useful auto zone advanced auto parts sell the set
Good luck


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  #6  
Old 08-09-2014, 06:03 PM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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Ok I have given up for tonight. I definitely did not see this coming. Even though the small 90 degree small wrench fits in perfectly, I was not able to hit the other end hard enough to loosen the bolt. I even tried a longer 7mm 3/8" Hex bit which I got from Napa. The shorter one is from Autozone. I do not want to strip out the head because them it will be impossible to remove the bolt.

Lifting up the control arm did make enough space for the bit to go in straight into the bolt. I did not raise it too high because I was afraid of breaking/straining some other suspension component. Maybe I should try to raise it a little bit higher next time to see if that works.

Oh yeah, I did put PB blaster inside the rubber boot to see if that would loosen the bolt. No luck

I had already put on the noise free compound on the brake pads in anticipation of changing them. I wonder how long that compound can just stay there without degrading. I have kept the pads aside for now.

Damisco, what socket are you referring to from Bavauto? I know they sell the standard 3/8 drive Hex Bit set. Is that the one you are referring to?
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Last edited by Ustad; 08-09-2014 at 06:14 PM.
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  #7  
Old 08-09-2014, 06:18 PM
Wgosma Wgosma is offline
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It's a bear....the darn volts are really tight so gotta have leverage on the hex. See if this other persons hex is the answer. If not, try the hex tool you have again...as long as you can keep the thing pressed in while you put leverage on it you won't round out the inside; impact is really what is needed to break it loose, that's why the brass hammer, tho I realize it's pretty darn hard to hold the tiny wrench in there while you whack it.
Keep us posted...


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  #8  
Old 08-09-2014, 06:52 PM
damisco damisco is offline
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The ones on the last picture mine is the short one u need an extension and a good breaker don't use hammer make sure u have enough room and be a good position to handle it, don't be frustrated take it easy u have to be patient if I work on these cars any little mistake can cost dollars it took me 3 months to figure how to change my power steering high pressure hose without pulling all the stuffs the work book says even on the forum I couldn't get enough info to to tackle the job but I made it happen with patience any question I will be happy to answer sorry for the delay


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  #9  
Old 08-09-2014, 08:33 PM
Wgosma Wgosma is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wgosma View Post
It's a bear....the darn bolts are really tight so gotta have leverage on the hex. See if this other persons hex is the answer. If not, try the hex tool you have again...as long as you can keep the thing pressed in while you put leverage on it you won't round out the inside; impact is really what is needed to break it loose, that's why the brass hammer, tho I realize it's pretty darn hard to hold the tiny wrench in there while you whack it.
Keep us posted...


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don't sweat the anti-squeal sitting overnight.
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  #10  
Old 08-10-2014, 02:07 AM
AH673000 AH673000 is offline
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Just did this job.... Used a long 7mm angle


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  #11  
Old 08-10-2014, 02:10 AM
AH673000 AH673000 is offline
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Used a long handled angle 7 mm Allen wrench . Put the short end in your bolt and slightly tighten it to break the bolt free , then back it out by using a hammer to help as necessary. The key is using the right tool. My Allen wrench long side is 9" long and the short side is 2" long. It cost $8 and is made for doing brake jobs.


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  #12  
Old 08-10-2014, 11:03 AM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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Thanks everyone! It looks like a long ended 7mm angled Allen Wrench is the way to go in this case. That plus a good whack with the hammer to loosen the bolt. (I was using the non business end of long 3/8" torque wrench to hit the other end).

As AH673000 suggested, I will also try to hit it in the opp direction (i.e clockwise) in order to loosen the seize and then hit it in the correct direction.

I will probably do this next weekend and will update this thread with the results
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  #13  
Old 08-10-2014, 11:14 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustad View Post
Thanks everyone! It looks like a long ended 7mm angled Allen Wrench is the way to go in this case.
The only thing I can suggest is that static friction is far greater than dynamic friction, so, get some motion in there if you can. By that, I mean have someone repeatedly tap the parts with a steel hammer to set up vibrations, as you simultaneously wrench it out while being careful not to strip it.

I don't really know if the banging works, or if it's just the placebo effect, but, my "thought" on that is it allows the penetrating oil to slip inside the threads and it lowers friction because dynamic friction is lower than static. Whether that's true or not, I really don't know - but that's all I can offer in addition to what has been stated above.

BTW, I have to give credit for the heartening fact that the OP clearly read the discussions on how to change the brakes! I appreciate that the effort we all expended didn't go to waste.

Here are the related pictures from the related thread that the OP clearly read...
- One user's example of a complete brake job with all torque figures, specs, measurements, fluids, decisions, tools, tricks, mistakes, suppliers, costs, etc., that it entails (1)





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Last edited by bluebee; 08-10-2014 at 11:16 AM.
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  #14  
Old 08-10-2014, 11:37 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustad View Post
I wonder how long that compound can just stay there without degrading. I have kept the pads aside for now.
I'm sure it lasts forever, and, even if you had to remove it, you could wipe it off to clean it up (albeit a bit messily).

BTW, I don't recognize those pads.

What brand/model pads are they (for this thread)?
- What brake pads are recommended for street use on the E39 (1)

Would you kindly snap a picture of the friction rating for those pads for this thread?
- What friction grade (e.g., EE, FF, EF, etc.) is recommended for BMW E39 brake pads (1)
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  #15  
Old 08-10-2014, 12:38 PM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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Bluebee, those are Pagid red brake pads purchased from Bavarian auto. You can see the logo on the pads if you look at my photo above. Although I didn't see the friction grade of the pads. I will take a look when I get back home.

I just went to autozone, advance auto parts and harbor freight and I just cannot seem to find a long arm 7mm Allen wrench. They have 6 and 8, but everybody skips out 7mm.

The 7mm angled wrench I have has a 4 inch arm. Unless I find a long arm, I will have to use the one I have.


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  #16  
Old 08-10-2014, 04:37 PM
Ustad Ustad is offline
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I finally got the bolt loose and it turned out to be the easiest thing to do (Well, almost). All I had to do was find a way for the spring to be compressed so that there would be enough space for me to put in a normal wrench. Turned out the answer was staring at me the whole time....

It turns out that with the car sitting on all the wheels, there is more than enough space to get a wrench in there to open the bolts and thats what I did.

You can see clearly from the photos how much space there is once the springs are in the compressed state. The 7mm Hex Bit goes in straight and there is more than enough space for a 3/8 drive to turn easily. A normal 3/8 wrench did not have enough leverage so I used my Harbor Freight 3/8" Torque wrench with a long handle and easily broke the bolt seize. After that I easily used a normal wrench and loosened the bolt. I did not take the bolt out as I dont have the time now to complete the work so this will have to wait till next Saturday.

The bolt was really stuck in there. I think even if I did get a long arm angled 7mm wrench, I would had to hit it quite hard and quite a few times for the bolt to loosen. I am glad I figured out this way to loosen the bolt. The other advantage of this method is that I can easily use the Torque wrench again to tighten the bolt to the correct torque after I complete the pad replacement.

The first 3 pics are with the Harbor Freight torque wrench and the last 2 are with the normal 3/8 wrench to show how easily it can be turned.

I hope this helps the other person who tries to tackle this bolt.
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  #17  
Old 08-10-2014, 06:32 PM
damisco damisco is offline
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This is the easiest job I have never done on my bimmer as I mentioned the socket from bava auto if u go on their site look for brakes tools parts# 33890 6mm 3/8 drive for $4.95 it fits straight in with no assle it can also be used for other work on your bimmer
I don't buy bimmer tools from auto zone and others shops they only standard tools for American cars so using them bimmer is a as sling job
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  #18  
Old 08-10-2014, 08:06 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ustad View Post
Bluebee, those are Pagid red ... I didn't see the friction grade of the pads. I will take a look when I get back home.
I didn't see it on the anti-squeal plate, but it can be on the sides since it's a legal requirement that it be stamped on the pads.

Here's what my PBR pads looked like, for example (rated FF):
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