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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 03-23-2013, 04:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Shock Absorber???????

Hi Guys - hope everyone is well. Got a wee problem with my 320i E46 , While driving this morning there was a clunk and the rear passengers side dropped noticeably, managed to pull over and have a look but by this time it had come back up again. I managed to limp the car back home but this happened several times, I was wondering if this could be a shock absorber not going up and down in the correct way? will probably have to take it to the garage but just wondered what it might be, i took the rear wheel off and it was spinning freely etc, the spring looked ok and there doesnt look as if anything major is broken.
It is a 2003 2.2l with 80k on the clock.
Thanks guys or gals if any are here
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Old 03-23-2013, 06:05 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Wow, 80k on an 2003! Thats pretty good.

Shocks are normally supposed to last around 100,000 km or so. Could you see if the shock mount had come apart at all? Spring still seated in the perch?

The spring is what controls the actual hieght of the vehicle. The shock absorbers just provide dampening.
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Old 03-24-2013, 01:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the reply, When I looked the spring seemed ok and that's why I asked about the shock, When It first happened I thought spring because the rear end ust seemed to drop down, but It has confused me because it has gone back up as I thought If the spring had broken the rear would have stayed down. It almost felt like a hydraulic issue i.e. something pushing the car down then releasing, Not too sure if this post makes too much sense. The mileage is low because my missus uses it to get back and fore to her work mainly which is no distance, It breezed through this years M.O.T. test with nothing required. Anyhow I'll take another look under today as it was a bit cold and snowy yesterday and I'll have another look at spring etc
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Old 03-24-2013, 09:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I had another quick look and couldnt find anything obvious spring looks ok etc, Will have to look at changing shocks as a matter of course as they look quite rusty- Bloody Scottish Weather I took some pics but looks like a garage job and a hope that it is not going to cost a fortune









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Old 03-25-2013, 05:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Dont worry, mine is rusty like that as well. Thats what I get for driving it in the winter.

With the car stopped and level, have you tried pushing down on that side and seeing how it rebounds? And then repeating on the other side? I had a shock absorber fail when it leaked all the fluid out, however that was a Koni shock and not OEM
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Old 03-25-2013, 05:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for replying again, I just couldn't feel anything or see anything obvious, I have just dropped her (all cars are girls don't you know LOL) in a local garage - Not a main dealer and they are going to have a look at her either tomorrow or the next day, so fingers crossed it's not going to break the bank. Once I know what it is I will write on here just in case it may help someone else in the future that may have the same symptons, Kinda funny though how you can be nervy/worried while waiting for the diagnosis, I guess it's kind of expecting the worst yet hoping for the best
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