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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 06-10-2007, 04:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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E36 brakes?

There should be a sticky about this.

I've been hearing so many conflicting facts about this that I want to kill myself.

I have heard that european cars rotors should not be resurfaced.
I have heard that all cars need rotors resurfaced with new pads.

Is there supposed to be an indication sensor for my brake lights?
At what mm should I replace the rotors?

Basically, I've noticed that my stopping power has gone down tremendously. And at 40+ speeds when I brake, the steering wheel jerks left & right slightly, which from what i've heard means warped rotors.

Any help would be great.
Thanks.
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Old 06-10-2007, 05:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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yes there should be a sensor telling you when the pads are due to be changed. the sensor wire things should also be replaced whenever you replace the pads.

if they are warped they do need to be changed yes. not too expensive.

im not sure about resurfacing.
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Old 06-10-2007, 06:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I thought you could resurface any rotor except for cross-drilled?
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Old 06-10-2007, 06:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If your rotors are warped then yes, buy new ones. Resurfacing doesn't need to be done to try to correct noise/squeal, cosmetic corrosion, routine pad replacement, discoloration, or hard spots... All it will do is unnecessarily shorten the life of your rotors. Brake rotors should only be turned when one of the following rotor surface conditions exist: severe scoring, pulsation/thickness variation (small warping), or excessive corrosion on the braking surfaces
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Old 06-13-2007, 07:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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What's a good site for ordering rotors and pads?

I remember seeing a good one somewhere on here about a year ago.

Thanks guys.
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Old 06-14-2007, 05:34 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by BMW Kraft
What's a good site for ordering rotors and pads?

I remember seeing a good one somewhere on here about a year ago.

Thanks guys.
i think oem bmw brakes are just fine. from what i've read people are plenty happy with them. unless you want to upgrade.
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Old 06-14-2007, 11:17 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Just get the brake kit from pelicanparts. com. Free shipping on all orders over $75, and excellent quality product and customer service.

BMW rotors aren't made much thicker than they need to be, so usually resurfacing them will leave you with too puny a rotor (I believe the minimum thickness is 8mm -- etched on the side of some rotors).

The sensor for the brake lights is on the brake pedal, not the brakes themselves.

There are two pad wear sensors on your car -- one for each axle. I usually replace the sensor when I replace my pads and rotors, but doing so is not really necessary unless the wear pad indicator light was activated before you changed the pads.

Lastly, while you are working on your brakes, I would recommend that you replace the caliper guide pin bushings. The factory bushings are rubber, and if they are worn, might be the reason for your left-right wiggles. You can just replace them with factory rubber bushings, or buy brass bushings, which have no play and will ensure your pads wear evenly. All this stuff shall be available from whomever you buy your other brake parts.

Best of luck.
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Old 06-14-2007, 01:40 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Daniel with those caliper guide bolts, I can just add them now right? I changed my brakes a while ago, but they have plenty of life left. I have changed every front end bushing, tierods, ball joints, etc, but still get some shaking when braking. I also heard of some guibo or something thats part of the steering mechanism that can affect the shaking also, but that sounds hard to get to.
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Old 06-14-2007, 02:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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You should be able to change them without a problem. Even if you were to take the entire thing apart, it would just be a matter of putting everything back together. You won't be pushing the caliper piston back in, so it's no big deal. In fact, I think you won't even have to remove the calipers...
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:39 PM   #10 (permalink)
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thanks for the reply
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Old 06-22-2007, 03:53 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by BMW Kraft
What's a good site for ordering rotors and pads?

I remember seeing a good one somewhere on here about a year ago.

Thanks guys.
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have you tried ebay? anyways, i got some parts ordered from them, thought might want to give it a try and find bmw rotors for your car..
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:41 AM   #12 (permalink)
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i work at a honda dealership as a technician and at honda we do resurface rotors, however i own a 328is and since we have a bmw dealership in our franchise i get my parts at a discounted rate. i would suggest using bmw parts, factory that is. the rotors are soft and the pads bite well enough for even aggressive driving (my fronts are vented). unless you want a huge upgrade to like the brembo gt brake kit, stick with stock stuff. otherwise youll end up with nothing but noise
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Old 06-25-2007, 08:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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i didn't change my front rotors and i feel a difference. i've been told b/c it the 2nd set of pads that it helped to warp my front rotors. i'd change them if i were you.
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Old 06-26-2007, 12:38 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I have been seeing people using good quality BMW brake pads on their cars which does not resort to resurfacing,i dont think,resurfacing is the best way to make your beak pads perform at its best,as in many cases it only increases the possibility to corrosion.Thus it shortens the service life of your pad.BMW Brake Pads
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