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3-Series (E21, E30) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1975-1983 and 1984-1991 line. Specific models: BMW 315, BMW 316, BMW 318, BMW 318i, BMW 320/4, BMW 320i, BMW 320/6, BMW 323i, BMW 320i. E30 Family models include: BMW 325e, BMW 325i, BMW 325is, BMW 325ix.

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Old 07-20-2009, 11:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Stripped filler plug on differential

Hi, anybody know how to take off a stripped filler plug on the differential? Please help. Thanks
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Old 07-21-2009, 12:41 AM   #2 (permalink)
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When that happened to me I had to pull off the dif cover and replace the entire cover.

And when I say "I" I mean my mechanic.
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Old 07-21-2009, 10:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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my question would be, why even change the differential fluid? shouldn't have to and it's a much bigger pain in the ass to do then it's worth...but yes, idiots typically round the 4 sided drain plug off so you can't get it out any longer. It's a classic problem...the old diff plug..what I have seen is that folks take the bottom plug out, via whatever means, drain the fluid and then discover that the filler plug won't come out, the one on top, so they can't refill the damn thing...either way you/they are screwed....I wouldn't even mess with the differential fluid...if the thing goes it goes....and you replace the entire diff.....best of luck
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Old 07-21-2009, 11:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Read it on PelicanParts.com
Pelican Technical Article: BMW E30 3 Series Differential Oil Change
I done it before it was not hard at all if the filler plug was not stripped. Shifted much smoother after oil changed. Advice for the first timer changing the differential oil, ALWAYS take the filler plug off first then the drain plug. In my case, if I drained the oil first, then I'm really screwed.
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Old 07-22-2009, 09:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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actually I think it's an Allen isn't it on the BMW? I may thinking of Peugeot with 4 sided wrench thing, piece of junk Peugeots are...nevertheless....the situation remains the same, take the filler plug off first and then see if the drain plug will come out..that way you won't can't be stranded...good luck..cliff
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Old 07-23-2009, 01:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Sorry it was the transmission filler plug not the differential. Yes you will need to use a 17mm hex bit. If I can't get it off then I can't change the transmission oil, anybody got a solution to this problem?
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:23 AM   #7 (permalink)
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weld a nut on the plug and crank that out, maybe?
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:53 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Ok thanks
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Old 07-23-2009, 11:02 AM   #9 (permalink)
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^^^ I should say that I've never done that myself...but I've heard of it being done.
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Old 07-23-2009, 11:21 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Old 07-23-2009, 02:37 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks I live in San Francisco and I will search to see if anything available. I don't want to light up a torch underneath the car.
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Old 07-23-2009, 03:03 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Thanks I live in San Francisco and I will search to see if anything available. I don't want to light up a torch underneath the car.
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Old 07-23-2009, 08:25 PM   #13 (permalink)
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actually, you are screwed to begin with if you can't tell the difference between a differential and the transmission...what? I see no fruitfull outcome on this effort.....
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Old 07-23-2009, 08:32 PM   #14 (permalink)
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You could post in this forum, and see if you can get any recommendations there

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Good luck with it.
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