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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 06-27-2004, 08:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I own a 2003 325 Ci, and I've noticed significant overinflation wear (center wearing faster than outer edges). Funny thing is I'm an absolute stickler about keeping tire pressure proper. According to my door jam and manual instructions, my EcoPlus Continentals are to be at 30psi front and 35 psi rear. Has anyone else encountered this problem? I know the responses will probably be "the stock tire sucks, get something else."

Perhaps its the heat down here in Florida. I've been running now at 32-33 psi in the rear, hopefully to minimize the damage and prolong the useful life of the tire as long as possible. I've never really had a problem like this before with any car, which got me thinking, does ambient temperature (cold tire temp) mean first thing checking pressure in the morning, during the highest heat point in the day in the shade, or during the day right out in the sun?
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Old 06-27-2004, 08:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I always look at the side wall of the tire... and run 2 psi under in the front... and the exact max in the rear.... no problems for me.... you might want to try looking at the tire it self.
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Old 06-27-2004, 10:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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if both look the same, this is amost 100% due to too high pressure. are the fronts ok?

your contis should easily tolerate 35 psi (checked on cold tires, i.e. NOT driven). perhaps your gauge is at fault.

i check mine in the shade before driving. ambient temp seems to matter little. i think the main source of heat is driving (i.e. sidewall flex).

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Old 06-28-2004, 06:47 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the replies. Yes, the fronts are fine, the rears both wear the same pattern, and have already been replaced once, and the replacements have the same wear pattern. I've used and tried multiple gauges, making sure mine isn't faulty.

My uneducated opinion is that the amount of driving I do a day (approx. 80 miles), the speed at which a drive (approx. 80 mph), the heat where I live (Florida), and the fact that I rarely have anyone in the car but me going to work since it's so far away (meaning the load on the tires is light all the time), all contribute to the tire essentially being overinflated at the standard pressure. If 35 psi is fine for up to 4 passengers, maybe it's too much for 1 passenger doing the type of driving I do?

Don't know, I just know it can't be alignment or balancing, since the wear pattern is clearly overinflation and not cupping or shoulder wear. It's the only thing I don't love about my BMW, and even this isn't that big of a problem, it just means that I occasionally spend more money (which I would end up wasting on my girlfriend anyway) and get to spend the afternoon at the BMW dealership eating fresh-baked cookies and drinking Starbucks....
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