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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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  #1  
Old 01-20-2013, 04:20 PM
Spagolli94 Spagolli94 is offline
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Bad roads and suspension wear

I'm getting a set of Koni FSDs installed this week. My car is closing in on 40,000 miles and these roads certainly aren't kind to the car. So even though everything feels fine, I thought I'd have them inspect the suspension parts for any signs of damage or wear. As they are going to be installing the shocks, I figure it wouldn't hurt to be proactive and take a look. Case in point, I once had an alignment done and the tech discovered a cracked control arm bushing. I hadn't realized anything was wrong, but once the bushing was fixed, the steering felt much tighter and more responsive.

Anything specific I should have them check out?
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  #2  
Old 01-20-2013, 04:42 PM
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Orient330iNYC Orient330iNYC is offline
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off the top of my head:
control arm bushings
swaybar end links
swaybar bushings
front and rear shock mounts.
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2013, 11:20 AM
bluskye bluskye is offline
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Front/rear shock mounts should be replaced with your shock swap... its good practice on a higher mileage car. They go bad, just a matter of when and when they do, you will pay double the labor and the same part cost to begin with. The fronts cost the most, the rears have negligible cost.
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  #4  
Old 01-22-2013, 08:19 AM
Spagolli94 Spagolli94 is offline
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Cool, thanks. I'll have them be sure to inspect these parts while their working on the Koni install.
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  #5  
Old 01-22-2013, 10:28 AM
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cwinter cwinter is offline
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Spagolli, I'd be interested to hear your comments on how the ride changed after this install, especially since you are doing just the struts/shocks. Many do control arms and other items as well. I want to go this route in another 10-15k miles, replacing only the struts/shocks with Koni FSDs, plus whatever items seem worn on the suspension.
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  #6  
Old 01-22-2013, 11:08 AM
Spagolli94 Spagolli94 is offline
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I'll be sure to let you know. I was on the fence about doing this install as the ride quality isn't too bad on most roads I drive on. Much better than my 2006 330 ever was. But after an especially rough drive through the city, I decided to order the FSDs. But then a few days later, I mounted my winter tires. They are RFT, but seem to be MUCH better than the stock RFT that came with the car. So, the Koni's sat in the closet as I debated doing the install. I'm sure the ride would improve even more once I mount non RFT summer tires. So I was going to wait a bit. But then the other day on the highway, I hit an expansion joint the size of a mini-speed bump. The resulting explosion was startling to say the least. So, I decided to move forward with the install.

I had Koni FSDs on my 2006 330i as well, but that car was so hopeless that they didn't provide the magic bullet I was hoping for. I remember that the city ride wasn't improved much. But the highway ride was much better. No more banging on expansion joints. I'm anxious to see what I think this time around.
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  #7  
Old 01-22-2013, 01:50 PM
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cwinter cwinter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spagolli94 View Post
I'll be sure to let you know. I was on the fence about doing this install as the ride quality isn't too bad on most roads I drive on. Much better than my 2006 330 ever was. But after an especially rough drive through the city, I decided to order the FSDs. But then a few days later, I mounted my winter tires. They are RFT, but seem to be MUCH better than the stock RFT that came with the car. So, the Koni's sat in the closet as I debated doing the install. I'm sure the ride would improve even more once I mount non RFT summer tires. So I was going to wait a bit. But then the other day on the highway, I hit an expansion joint the size of a mini-speed bump. The resulting explosion was startling to say the least. So, I decided to move forward with the install.

I had Koni FSDs on my 2006 330i as well, but that car was so hopeless that they didn't provide the magic bullet I was hoping for. I remember that the city ride wasn't improved much. But the highway ride was much better. No more banging on expansion joints. I'm anxious to see what I think this time around.
With 40k miles on the car, I think this should be a good improvement simply because at 40k miles, the old struts/shocks have certainly lost a good portion of their life.

I'm happy with ride quality for the most part, but at 52k miles, I know pretty soon new struts/shocks will be necessary. Next year I'll come up on 70k and will probably spring for the FSDs over BMW OEM (I think Bilstein makes those). I think after 4-5 years, a good look at the suspension and replacing some parts will be a good thing.
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  #8  
Old 01-24-2013, 10:15 AM
Spagolli94 Spagolli94 is offline
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Good news. All suspension parts looked good. Got the Koni's installed and a fresh alignment. They got the alignment spot on. My impression of the Koni's is similar to what I remember from my 330. Rolling slowly over bad city streets is still pretty rough with a fair amount of rumble coming from the suspension. Almost like the frequency of the bumps isn't high enough to get the shocks to enter their softer mode. But once you get up to speed on the highway, they really shine. Smooth, firm and plenty. Less rubbery than stock. And bridge joints literally melt under the car. Handling is great too. Very responsive with no body roll. Steering feels a bit tighter with my fresh alignment and road feel is unchanged. If I needed new shocks, I would definitely get these over stock. But paying $1600 (parts, install and alignment) just to try to improve the stock ride? Eh, not sure it's worth it. My ride wasn't that awful in stock form. I'm curious to see what further improvement I get when I finally get non RFT this summer.
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  #9  
Old 01-24-2013, 10:47 AM
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cwinter cwinter is offline
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Location: Dallas, TX
 
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Great, thanks for the info! I was always quite satisfied with the OEM suspension in this area but figured the Konis get such good reviews, once the OEMs go I might as well get them. Thanks for the feedback!
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