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3-Series (E46, E90) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.

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Old 07-14-2005, 11:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I just had my front control arms replaced by the dealer on my 2001 330i at only 38k. They said it didn't need a wheel alignment, shouldn't it need to be re-aligned? Now it seems to be making a noise on sharp right hand turns ,sounds like wheel is hopping or something.
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Old 07-14-2005, 12:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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yes needs realignment. noise always bad, they need to check everything. bucnh of thigns get unhooked to repace the arms.
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Old 07-15-2005, 12:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Technically when replacing the bushings no alignment settings are directly changed and so some shops will not insist that an alignment is done. The fact that you are replacing a worn bushing with a new 1 means that the suspension angles can change and so an alignment is preferred but once again not mandatory. Also it is not a bad idea to do the alignment anyway with 38k miles on the car. Were the bushings done under warranty or did you pay to have them done? If they were done under warranty then BMWNA would pay for the dealer to align the vehicle after replacing the bushings if the technician thought an alignment was necessary. If not then really there is no harm done as there is no overlapping work and so you would not have saved any $$$ by having the alignment done at the same time vs taking it back and asking them to do it now if you so desire.

In response to Peter's comments, there actually is nothing that gets unhooked to do the bushings,they are pressed off and on in the car so the only bolts that get loosened are the ones which hold the bushings themselves on. I still would however for peace of mind take it back and ask them to reinspect their work to make sure there was nothing left loose and the car is safe to drive.
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Old 07-15-2005, 11:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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i thought the whole arm gets replaced, and the bushings are "pre-pressed" ?

so the whole bottom a-arm comes off, no? used used
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Old 07-15-2005, 01:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Its rare that the entire arm gets replaced unless the ball joints are worn as well, and I really doubt that is the case with 38k miles on the car. The bushings are pre pressed onto a housing but the old bushings must be pressed off with basically a modified bearing separator and then the new bushing/housing assembly is pressed back on to the arm. This is all done on the car so as I said earlier unless another component on the arm is worn and requiring replacement, the work is all done in the car with the arms installed.

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Old 07-17-2005, 11:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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excellent, thank you!

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Old 07-17-2005, 09:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You're very welcome.

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Old 07-17-2005, 10:02 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally posted by Dirty_Tool@Jul 17 2005, 08:17 PM
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[snapback]363125[/snapback]
DT, I have a 2000 3er and they changed both because of a style update. Could this have been the issue? and is there a problem with running one old and one current style arm on your vehicle.
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Old 07-17-2005, 11:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Well the thing is its kind of rare that the arms really need to be replaced unless they are bent. Usually its just the bushings that are cracked or worn and only those get replaced. The ball joints are actually replaceable without replacing the arms as well so I dunno if some shops are just selling the arms because they can get the parts cheaper than what itd cost in labor to replace the ball joints.. that i dunno. I always prefer to replace the arms in a pair whenever possible but replacing only 1 side isnt the end of the world, provided that the side u dont replace is in good working condition and the ball joints/bushings on that side have no play or wear. As far as the updated parts are concerned I wasnt aware of any recent updates, by memory the very early models had updates for vibration but by 00 and 01 for sure all that was straightened out in production. Someone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. Hope i answered ur question somewhat at least.

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Old 07-18-2005, 04:46 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally posted by DUNLIN@Jul 14 2005, 11:43 AM
I just had my front control arms replaced by the dealer on my 2001 330i at only 38k. They said it didn't need a wheel alignment, shouldn't it need to be re-aligned? Now it seems to be making a noise on sharp right hand turns ,sounds like wheel is hopping or something.
[snapback]362278[/snapback]

How much was it to replace the control arms?
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Old 07-29-2005, 10:44 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Get the allignment done and see if it fixes the problem, even if you have to pay for it. Although, I would think an allignment would be mandatory after replacing control arms and would be included if it was a warranty repair.
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