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BMW Home > BMW Technical Articles  > BMW 3-Series E46 (1999-2006) Technical Articles
BMW E46 DIY Technical Articles BMW 3-Series E46 (1999 - 2006)
Technical DIY Articles

Welcome to our BMW E46 technical articles section!  We've created a vast collection of useful articles to help you repair many items on your BMW.  Save money by avoiding your mechanic and perform the repairs using the information we've provided here.  Can't find what you're looking for?  Check out our Technical Article Directory, or hop over to our BMW E46 Forum and ask your question to the thousands of members who post messages there every day!

All BMW E46 3-Series Articles (103)
Changing Your Motor Oil and Filter
Whether you follow BMW's recommended interval or like to change your oil every 3,000 miles. Use this tech article to learn how to do the most common task to do on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Jacking Up Your 3-Series BMW
Most common tasks need the car to be jacked up in the air. But where should you place the jack, and what is the safest method of lifting it? It's all answered here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Drive Belt
Worn drive belts. Here's some short instructions on this very basic of maintenance tasks.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Engine Air Filter Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the air filter is? Check out this simple article!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Battery Connection Notes and Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the battery is or how it's connected? Check out this simple article explaining all that and more!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Cabin Microfilter Replacement
Changing the cabin air filter is literally a snap with our handy replacement guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Engine Splash Shield and Plate Replacement
Need access to the bottom of your engine? You're going to have to remove the engine splash shields first. Here's some short instructions on removing the engine splash shield.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Wiper Component Replacement
This article will cover replacing the windshield wiper components on BMW E46 models.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Identifying BMW E46 Vehicle Options
Option what? Do I have the sport package in my 325i? In this article, I'll go over the various options your E46 may have and how to interpret them.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Engine Articles (12)
Removing the Engine Cover
Need help removing the engine cover? Find the answers in here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
VANOS Actuator Replacement
Rough running engine? Your VANOS actuator may be to blame. Use these steps to replace your VANOS actuator.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Spark Plugs and Coils
Spark plugs are an important part of your engine - make sure that they are replaced every 60,000 miles or so, to keep your ignition system running smoothly.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Starter
Now that you've determined that the starter is bad, learn how to replace it without electrocuting yourself by reading this article here.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Oil Level Sensor
Oil level in your dash no longer accurate? Swap that pesky sensor out in no time!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
VANOS Solenoid Oil Line Replacement
Here we describe how to replace the VANOS solenoid oil line on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Engine Mount Replacement
Engine mounts will wear out over time. If yours are loose or leaking, then that's a clear sign that they need to replaced.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Valve Cover Seal Replacement
Got a small oil leak coming from the valve cover or spark plug tubes? Here's how to fix the leak.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Alternator Replacement
Replacing the alternator on the E46 can be a bit tedious due to the modular front end design. Here, I'll go over the steps involved with changing it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Cylinder Head Bolt Testing
In this tech article I will cover how to inspect the cylinder head bolt threads in the block for stripping.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Head Gasket Replacement
How to replace your head gasket in step by step instructions
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Oil Filter Housing Gasket Replacement
If you have oil leak that looks like your oil pan, check to see if the oil filter stand is leaking first. This common leak is tricky to diagnose. Good news, we'll show you how to replace in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Crankcase Breather Valve Replacement
Breather valve starting to give you trouble? Replace it with this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Idler Pulley Replacement
Here we describe how to replace the idler pulley on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Oil Pan Gasket Replacement
In this tech article, I will show you how to replace the oil pan gasket on a rear-wheel drive E46.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Removing Your Exhaust Manifold
Removing the exhaust manifold on your E46 may seem daunting, so read up on it first!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Brake Maintenance & Repair Articles (8)
Replacing Your Brake Pads
Brake pad sensor light on? It might be time to replace those pads. You're in luck, we have the steps laid out for you in this easy to follow tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Brake Rotors
Learn how to replace your brake rotors with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Brake Calipers
If your car won't start, that's not good. If your car won't stop, that's really bad.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Brake Rotor Specification Checking
This tech article will go over measuring your brake rotors to see if they need to be replaced.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Parking Brake Shoes Replacement
Here we describe how to replace your parking brake shoes on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Adjusting Your Parking Brake
Tired of chasing your car down hill? Adjusting that parking brake using this article has never been easier!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
ABS Sensor Replacement
Need to replace your ABS Wheel Sensor? Follow our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Replacing Your Brake Ducts
Learn how to replace your brake duct with this technical article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Parking Brake Shoe Backing Plate Replacement
In this article I will go over how to replace the parking brake shoe backing plate.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Suspension Articles (17)
Front Strut Replacement
Learn how to test and replace the front struts and coil springs on your E46 BMW.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2002-2006), BMW 325Xi (2002-2006), BMW 325Ci (2002-2007), BMW 325ti (2002-2005)
Replacing Your Rear Shocks
Replacement of your rear shocks is one of the most common procedures for your E46. See these instructions for complete details on the replacement process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Power Steering Reservoir Replacement
Is your power steering reservoir looking ugly? Swap it out with a new one following the steps outlined in this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Coil Springs
Replacement of your rear springs is one of the most common procedures for your E46. See these instructions for complete details on the replacement process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Rear Wheel Carrier Bushing
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Here we go over how to replace the rear wheel bearing carrier bushing.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Upper Ball Joint Replacement
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Here we go over how to replace the rear ball joint.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arm Bushings
One of the most common repairs on the front end of an E46 BMW is the front control arm bushings. See how to replace them here along with a few tricks to make getting the bushing off easier. This article applies to front wheel drive (FWD) models.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arm Bushings on Your AWD BMW
This article applies to All Wheel Drive (AWD) models.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Stabilizer Links
The rear stabilizer bar end links on BMW E46 models get noisy and even pop apart under pressure from the suspension. We'll show you how to replace them in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arms on Your RWD BMW
Front control and control arm ball joint problems lead to poor driving performance and noise. Use this tech article to learn how to replace the front control arm on your all wheel drive (AWD) BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Trailing Arm Bushing
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Have a tire wear problem? Here we go over how to replace the rear trailing arm bushing.
Applies to: Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Have a tire wear problem? Here we go over how to replace the rear trailing arm bushing.
BMW E46 3-Series Fuel Injection Articles (17)
Fuel Filter Replacement
You should replace your fuel filter about every 10,000 miles or so. This technical article shows you how to perform this relatively easy maintenance task.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Oxygen Sensor Replacement
Old, worn out oxygen sensors can cause poor mileage, low power and a variety of fuel injection problems. Learn to replace them today with our article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing and Replacing Your Fuel Injectors
This article will describe the steps involved in replacing or cleaning your fuel injectors.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Fuel Pump Testing
Use this tech article to see how to test the fuel pump on your BMW E46.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Fuel Pump Replacement
Faulty fuel pump? See how to replace your fuel pump with these easy to follow instructions.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Camshaft Sensor Testing
This tech article will show how to test BMW E46 camshaft position sensors.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Camshaft Sensor Replacement
bad cam sensor can prevent the engine from starting. Here's how to change it out in under 10 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Crankshaft Sensor Replacement
A bad crank sensor can prevent the engine from starting. Here's how to change it out in under 10 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Mass Air Flow Sensor Replacement
Changing the E46 MAF sensor is literally a snap with our handy replacement guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Throttle Housing Replacement
Need to remove your throttle housing? We makes it easy with his detailed guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Air Intake Ducts Replacement
Here we'll walk you through removing and replacing the air intake ducts on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Intake Manifold Gasket Replacement
Time to replace your intake manifold gasket? It's easier than you thinkÖ Don't believe us? Read on!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Secondary Air Components
If your secondary air pump fails then you're looking at a check engine light. This article will fix the problem so you can turn off that light!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Cooling System Articles (8)
Cooling System Leak Test
Leaky cooling system? Use this tech article to perform a leak test.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Flushing Your Coolant
Check it out - More than you ever wanted to know about your cooling system, why you need to maintain it regularly, and how to change that pesky coolant.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Thermostat Replacement
The thermostat on the E46 can sometimes fail over time, causing some potentially dangerous overheating conditions. Here's how to replace it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Water Pump Replacement
Car starting to overheat? Heater not working like it used to? Over time, the water pump will eventually need to be changed. Here's how to swap it out on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Coolant Expansion Tank Replacement
These coolant tanks are well known to crack and leak. Replacement is a snap and takes less than 30 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Radiator Replacement
Here's how to change the radiator on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Cooling Fan Replacement
Is your cooling fan making funny noises? Swap it out with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Fan Clutch Testing
In this tech article we'll go over how to test the fan clutch a few different ways.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Radiator Outlet Temperature Sensor Replacement
Replace your radiator outlet temperature sensor quickly with this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Heater Valve Replacement
Do you have very little to no heat in your car? A faulty heater valve may be to blame.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Transmission & Axle Articles (5)   
Automatic Trans Fluid Replacement
Replace your automatic trans fluid every 60,000 miles to extend the life of your transmission
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Manual Transmission Fluid Flush
One of the easiest tasks to perform on your E46 is to change the transmission fluid, but just in case you need a bit of guidance, be sure to read this article first.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Flex Disc Replacement
These flex discs crack and fail all the time. The good news is that replacement is relatively easy! Check out this article for detailed instructions on this procedure.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Differential Fluid Replacement
One of the easiest tasks to perform on your BMW E46 is to change the differential oil, but just in case you need a bit of guidance, be sure to read this article first.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Clutch Delay Valve Replacement
In this tech article, I will show you how to replace the clutch delay valve on a manual transmission E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
All Wheel Drive Transfer Case Mount Replacement
Easy instructions to replace your AWD transfer case mount.
Applies to: BMW 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05)
Battery Connection Notes and Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the battery is or how it's connected? Check out this simple article explaining all that and more!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Alternator Replacement
Replacing the alternator on the E46 can be a bit tedious due to the modular front end design. Here, I'll go over the steps involved with changing it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Reading Fault Codes
In this tech article we'll provide you with the procedure for checking fault codes.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Understanding the E46 Engine Management Systems
BMW E46 models utilize a few different engine management systems. In this tech article we will break them down and explain the differences as well as some important functional notes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2003-2007), BMW 325Xi (2003-2007), BMW 325Ci (2003-2008), BMW 325ti (2003-2006)
Brake Light Switch Replacement
The brake pedal switch can fail a few different ways. Learn to diagnose and fix the problem.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Blower Motor Final Stage Replacement
Learn how to replace your blower motor with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Radio and CD Player Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to replace the radio, locate the radio fuses, set the clock and replace the CD changer.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Removing Your IHKA Control Panel
The problem isn't always the blower resistor. The IHKA control panel on BMW E46 models fails too. Whether it's broken buttons, failing illumination or a totally inop panel. This tech article will show you how to replace the IHKA panel.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Headlight Switch
Headlights working intermittently? Might be time for a new headlight switch. Use this tech article to see how to replace your headlight switch.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Steering Column Switch Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to replace the clock spring and the cluster of switches mounted to the clock spring on BMW E46 vehicles.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Washer Pump Testing and Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to test and replace the windshield washer pump.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Wiper Component Replacement
This article will cover replacing the windshield wiper components on BMW E46 models.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Body Articles (14)   Jump to Interior Articles
Removing Your Front Bumper
In order to access the front end on the E46, you need to remove the front bumper. Here's how you do it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Hood Grille Replacement
BMWs are known for their kidney grills. E46 models are known for their kidney grill mounting tabs failing. In this tech article we show you to replace the front grilles in your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Remove Your Headlights
Moisture problems or corroded wiring in your headlights? Learn how to remove and replace the headlights on your BMW E46 with these easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Remove Your Headlight Lens
Over time headlight covers become yellow and dull. In this tech article we will show you how to remove and replace the headlight lenses on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Xenon Headlight Replacement
In this tech article I will show you how to remove and replace the Xenon headlights on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Exterior Light Bulbs Replacement
Learn how to change all the exterior light bulbs on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
How to Replace Your Blower Motor
Noise from your heater when the fan is on? We go over how to replace your blower motor in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Body Side Molding Replacement
This project will replace that peeling, scratched or cracked side molding
Applies to: BMW 325i (2003-2007), BMW 325Xi (2003-2007), BMW 325Ci (2003-2008), BMW 325ti (2003-2006)
Wheel Curb Damage Repair
Get rid of curb damage and keep your wheels looking new!
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
A Guide to Replacing Your Door Mirror Housing
If you parked on a narrow street then you probably need to read this article!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Exhaust System
Here we describe how to remove your exhaust system on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Bumper Replacement
Bumper cover full of license plate screw marks from people parking too close? Use this tech article to learn how to remove and replace the rear bumper and rear bumper support on your E46 BMW.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Muffler Replacement
Is your E46 muffler rusting into oblivion? Replace it by following this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Tail Lights
Don't get pulled over for this silly reason. Fix this one today!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Instrument Cluster
In this project we will remove the instrument cluster from your E46 and see what is repairable inside.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Interior Door Panels
There are quite a few projects that reside behind your door panel. Figure out how to take them off the right way
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Front Window Regulator Replacement
Power window problems, time for a new window regulator, or need to replace the glass in your E46? Well itís all covered in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
A-Pillar Trim Replacement
Has your trim seen better days? Learn how to replace it following this guide here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Entrance Strip and B Pillar Trim Replacement
Need to access components behind the B-pillar trim? Follow our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Door Seal Replacement
If you have a water leak in your BMW E46 this is a good place to start your diagnosis.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Front Seat and Buckle Replacement
This tech article shows you how to remove your front seat and replace the seat belt buckle with easy to follow steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Steering Wheel and Driver Airbag Replacement
Here are the steps to safely remove your steering wheel and air bag.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Door Cavity Molding Replacement
Worn or missing door cavity molding is a sore sight. Use this tech article to learn how to replace it on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Gear Shift Boot Replacement
Time to freshen up and replace a dry rotted shift boot? This tech article goes over what is involved and walks you through the process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Clutch Pedal Bushing Replacement
The bushings wear out over time creating free-play in the clutch pedal and reducing clutch feel and performance. Replace them using our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Replacing Your Parking Handbrake Cover
You have to look at this all the time, why not have it be shiny and new?
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Interior Switches Replacement
Follow our easy steps to replace faulty window and door switches.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Remove and Replace Your Trunk Release Button
Applies to: 325i (2006-2013), 325Xi (2006-2013), 330i (2007-2013), 330xi (2006), 328i (2007-2013), 335i (2006-2013)
E46 trunk release buttons take a lot of abuse. Breaking under constant stress. See how to replace yours in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Glovebox Compartment Lock
Glove compartment latch problems usually indicate a faulty lock or lock lever. In this tech article we show you how to replace the lock and associated parts.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Sunroof Glass and Shade Replacement
In this tech article I will cover how to remove the sunroof glass panel and repair the sun shade.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00
Ignition Lock Cylinder Replacement
The ignition lock cylinder wears out over time making it hard to unlock steering wheel and start your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Basic Maintenance Articles (8)
Changing Your Motor Oil and Filter
Whether you follow BMW's recommended interval or like to change your oil every 3,000 miles. Use this tech article to learn how to do the most common task to do on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Jacking Up Your 3-Series BMW
Most common tasks need the car to be jacked up in the air. But where should you place the jack, and what is the safest method of lifting it? It's all answered here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Drive Belt
Worn drive belts. Here's some short instructions on this very basic of maintenance tasks.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Engine Air Filter Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the air filter is? Check out this simple article!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Battery Connection Notes and Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the battery is or how it's connected? Check out this simple article explaining all that and more!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Cabin Microfilter Replacement
Changing the cabin air filter is literally a snap with our handy replacement guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Engine Splash Shield and Plate Replacement
Need access to the bottom of your engine? You're going to have to remove the engine splash shields first. Here's some short instructions on removing the engine splash shield.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Wiper Component Replacement
This article will cover replacing the windshield wiper components on BMW E46 models.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Identifying BMW E46 Vehicle Options
Option what? Do I have the sport package in my 325i? In this article, I'll go over the various options your E46 may have and how to interpret them.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Engine Articles (12)
Removing the Engine Cover
Need help removing the engine cover? Find the answers in here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
VANOS Actuator Replacement
Rough running engine? Your VANOS actuator may be to blame. Use these steps to replace your VANOS actuator.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Spark Plugs and Coils
Spark plugs are an important part of your engine - make sure that they are replaced every 60,000 miles or so, to keep your ignition system running smoothly.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Starter
Now that you've determined that the starter is bad, learn how to replace it without electrocuting yourself by reading this article here.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Oil Level Sensor
Oil level in your dash no longer accurate? Swap that pesky sensor out in no time!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
VANOS Solenoid Oil Line Replacement
Here we describe how to replace the VANOS solenoid oil line on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Engine Mount Replacement
Engine mounts will wear out over time. If yours are loose or leaking, then that's a clear sign that they need to replaced.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Valve Cover Seal Replacement
Got a small oil leak coming from the valve cover or spark plug tubes? Here's how to fix the leak.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Alternator Replacement
Replacing the alternator on the E46 can be a bit tedious due to the modular front end design. Here, I'll go over the steps involved with changing it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Cylinder Head Bolt Testing
In this tech article I will cover how to inspect the cylinder head bolt threads in the block for stripping.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Head Gasket Replacement
How to replace your head gasket in step by step instructions
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Oil Filter Housing Gasket Replacement
If you have oil leak that looks like your oil pan, check to see if the oil filter stand is leaking first. This common leak is tricky to diagnose. Good news, we'll show you how to replace in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Crankcase Breather Valve Replacement
Breather valve starting to give you trouble? Replace it with this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Idler Pulley Replacement
Here we describe how to replace the idler pulley on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Oil Pan Gasket Replacement
In this tech article, I will show you how to replace the oil pan gasket on a rear-wheel drive E46.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Removing Your Exhaust Manifold
Removing the exhaust manifold on your E46 may seem daunting, so read up on it first!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Brake Maintenance & Repair Articles (8)
Replacing Your Brake Pads
Brake pad sensor light on? It might be time to replace those pads. You're in luck, we have the steps laid out for you in this easy to follow tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Brake Rotors
Learn how to replace your brake rotors with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Brake Calipers
If your car won't start, that's not good. If your car won't stop, that's really bad.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Brake Rotor Specification Checking
This tech article will go over measuring your brake rotors to see if they need to be replaced.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Parking Brake Shoes Replacement
Here we describe how to replace your parking brake shoes on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Adjusting Your Parking Brake
Tired of chasing your car down hill? Adjusting that parking brake using this article has never been easier!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
ABS Sensor Replacement
Need to replace your ABS Wheel Sensor? Follow our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Replacing Your Brake Ducts
Learn how to replace your brake duct with this technical article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Parking Brake Shoe Backing Plate Replacement
In this article I will go over how to replace the parking brake shoe backing plate.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Suspension Articles (14)
Front Strut Replacement
Learn how to test and replace the front struts and coil springs on your E46 BMW.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2002-2006), BMW 325Xi (2002-2006), BMW 325Ci (2002-2007), BMW 325ti (2002-2005)
Replacing Your Rear Shocks
Replacement of your rear shocks is one of the most common procedures for your E46. See these instructions for complete details on the replacement process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Power Steering Reservoir Replacement
Is your power steering reservoir looking ugly? Swap it out with a new one following the steps outlined in this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Coil Springs
Replacement of your rear springs is one of the most common procedures for your E46. See these instructions for complete details on the replacement process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Rear Wheel Carrier Bushing
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Here we go over how to replace the rear wheel bearing carrier bushing.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Upper Ball Joint Replacement
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Here we go over how to replace the rear ball joint.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arm Bushings
One of the most common repairs on the front end of an E46 BMW is the front control arm bushings. See how to replace them here along with a few tricks to make getting the bushing off easier. This article applies to front wheel drive (FWD) models.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arm Bushings on Your AWD BMW
This article applies to All Wheel Drive (AWD) models.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Stabilizer Links
The rear stabilizer bar end links on BMW E46 models get noisy and even pop apart under pressure from the suspension. We'll show you how to replace them in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Front Control Arms on Your RWD BMW
Front control and control arm ball joint problems lead to poor driving performance and noise. Use this tech article to learn how to replace the front control arm on your all wheel drive (AWD) BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Trailing Arm Bushing
Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Have a tire wear problem? Here we go over how to replace the rear trailing arm bushing.
Applies to: Time to freshen up your rear suspension? Have a tire wear problem? Here we go over how to replace the rear trailing arm bushing.
BMW E46 3-Series Fuel Injection Articles (17)
Fuel Filter Replacement
You should replace your fuel filter about every 10,000 miles or so. This technical article shows you how to perform this relatively easy maintenance task.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Oxygen Sensor Replacement
Old, worn out oxygen sensors can cause poor mileage, low power and a variety of fuel injection problems. Learn to replace them today with our article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing and Replacing Your Fuel Injectors
This article will describe the steps involved in replacing or cleaning your fuel injectors.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Fuel Pump Testing
Use this tech article to see how to test the fuel pump on your BMW E46.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Fuel Pump Replacement
Faulty fuel pump? See how to replace your fuel pump with these easy to follow instructions.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Camshaft Sensor Testing
This tech article will show how to test BMW E46 camshaft position sensors.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Camshaft Sensor Replacement
bad cam sensor can prevent the engine from starting. Here's how to change it out in under 10 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Crankshaft Sensor Replacement
A bad crank sensor can prevent the engine from starting. Here's how to change it out in under 10 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Mass Air Flow Sensor Replacement
Changing the E46 MAF sensor is literally a snap with our handy replacement guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Throttle Housing Replacement
Need to remove your throttle housing? We makes it easy with his detailed guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Air Intake Ducts Replacement
Here we'll walk you through removing and replacing the air intake ducts on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Intake Manifold Gasket Replacement
Time to replace your intake manifold gasket? It's easier than you thinkÖ Don't believe us? Read on!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Secondary Air Components
If your secondary air pump fails then you're looking at a check engine light. This article will fix the problem so you can turn off that light!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
BMW E46 3-Series Cooling System Articles (8)
Cooling System Leak Test
Leaky cooling system? Use this tech article to perform a leak test.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Flushing Your Coolant
Check it out - More than you ever wanted to know about your cooling system, why you need to maintain it regularly, and how to change that pesky coolant.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Thermostat Replacement
The thermostat on the E46 can sometimes fail over time, causing some potentially dangerous overheating conditions. Here's how to replace it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Water Pump Replacement
Car starting to overheat? Heater not working like it used to? Over time, the water pump will eventually need to be changed. Here's how to swap it out on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Coolant Expansion Tank Replacement
These coolant tanks are well known to crack and leak. Replacement is a snap and takes less than 30 minutes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Radiator Replacement
Here's how to change the radiator on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Cooling Fan Replacement
Is your cooling fan making funny noises? Swap it out with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Fan Clutch Testing
In this tech article we'll go over how to test the fan clutch a few different ways.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Radiator Outlet Temperature Sensor Replacement
Replace your radiator outlet temperature sensor quickly with this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Heater Valve Replacement
Do you have very little to no heat in your car? A faulty heater valve may be to blame.
Applies to: 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Transmission & Axle Articles (5)   
Automatic Trans Fluid Replacement
Replace your automatic trans fluid every 60,000 miles to extend the life of your transmission
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Manual Transmission Fluid Flush
One of the easiest tasks to perform on your E46 is to change the transmission fluid, but just in case you need a bit of guidance, be sure to read this article first.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Flex Disc Replacement
These flex discs crack and fail all the time. The good news is that replacement is relatively easy! Check out this article for detailed instructions on this procedure.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Differential Fluid Replacement
One of the easiest tasks to perform on your BMW E46 is to change the differential oil, but just in case you need a bit of guidance, be sure to read this article first.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Clutch Delay Valve Replacement
In this tech article, I will show you how to replace the clutch delay valve on a manual transmission E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
All Wheel Drive Transfer Case Mount Replacement
Easy instructions to replace your AWD transfer case mount.
Applies to: BMW 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05)
BMW E46 3-Series Electrical System Articles (9)
Battery Connection Notes and Replacement
New to working on your car? Not sure where the battery is or how it's connected? Check out this simple article explaining all that and more!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004), BMW 525i (2001-2004)
Alternator Replacement
Replacing the alternator on the E46 can be a bit tedious due to the modular front end design. Here, I'll go over the steps involved with changing it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Reading Fault Codes
In this tech article we'll provide you with the procedure for checking fault codes.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Understanding the E46 Engine Management Systems
BMW E46 models utilize a few different engine management systems. In this tech article we will break them down and explain the differences as well as some important functional notes.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2003-2007), BMW 325Xi (2003-2007), BMW 325Ci (2003-2008), BMW 325ti (2003-2006)
Brake Light Switch Replacement
The brake pedal switch can fail a few different ways. Learn to diagnose and fix the problem.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Blower Motor Final Stage Replacement
Learn how to replace your blower motor with this article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Radio and CD Player Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to replace the radio, locate the radio fuses, set the clock and replace the CD changer.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Removing Your IHKA Control Panel
The problem isn't always the blower resistor. The IHKA control panel on BMW E46 models fails too. Whether it's broken buttons, failing illumination or a totally inop panel. This tech article will show you how to replace the IHKA panel.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Headlight Switch
Headlights working intermittently? Might be time for a new headlight switch. Use this tech article to see how to replace your headlight switch.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Steering Column Switch Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to replace the clock spring and the cluster of switches mounted to the clock spring on BMW E46 vehicles.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Washer Pump Testing and Replacement
In this tech article I will go over how to test and replace the windshield washer pump.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Wiper Component Replacement
This article will cover replacing the windshield wiper components on BMW E46 models.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
BMW E46 3-Series Body Articles (14)   Jump to Interior Articles
Removing Your Front Bumper
In order to access the front end on the E46, you need to remove the front bumper. Here's how you do it.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Hood Grille Replacement
BMWs are known for their kidney grills. E46 models are known for their kidney grill mounting tabs failing. In this tech article we show you to replace the front grilles in your E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Remove Your Headlights
Moisture problems or corroded wiring in your headlights? Learn how to remove and replace the headlights on your BMW E46 with these easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Remove Your Headlight Lens
Over time headlight covers become yellow and dull. In this tech article we will show you how to remove and replace the headlight lenses on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Xenon Headlight Replacement
In this tech article I will show you how to remove and replace the Xenon headlights on your E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Exterior Light Bulbs Replacement
Learn how to change all the exterior light bulbs on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
How to Replace Your Blower Motor
Noise from your heater when the fan is on? We go over how to replace your blower motor in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Body Side Molding Replacement
This project will replace that peeling, scratched or cracked side molding
Applies to: BMW 325i (2003-2007), BMW 325Xi (2003-2007), BMW 325Ci (2003-2008), BMW 325ti (2003-2006)
Wheel Curb Damage Repair
Get rid of curb damage and keep your wheels looking new!
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
A Guide to Replacing Your Door Mirror Housing
If you parked on a narrow street then you probably need to read this article!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Exhaust System
Here we describe how to remove your exhaust system on an E46 325i.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Bumper Replacement
Bumper cover full of license plate screw marks from people parking too close? Use this tech article to learn how to remove and replace the rear bumper and rear bumper support on your E46 BMW.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Rear Muffler Replacement
Is your E46 muffler rusting into oblivion? Replace it by following this guide.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Replacing Your Rear Tail Lights
Don't get pulled over for this silly reason. Fix this one today!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Instrument Cluster
In this project we will remove the instrument cluster from your E46 and see what is repairable inside.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Removing Your Interior Door Panels
There are quite a few projects that reside behind your door panel. Figure out how to take them off the right way
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Front Window Regulator Replacement
Power window problems, time for a new window regulator, or need to replace the glass in your E46? Well itís all covered in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
A-Pillar Trim Replacement
Has your trim seen better days? Learn how to replace it following this guide here!
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Entrance Strip and B Pillar Trim Replacement
Need to access components behind the B-pillar trim? Follow our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Door Seal Replacement
If you have a water leak in your BMW E46 this is a good place to start your diagnosis.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Front Seat and Buckle Replacement
This tech article shows you how to remove your front seat and replace the seat belt buckle with easy to follow steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Steering Wheel and Driver Airbag Replacement
Here are the steps to safely remove your steering wheel and air bag.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Door Cavity Molding Replacement
Worn or missing door cavity molding is a sore sight. Use this tech article to learn how to replace it on your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Gear Shift Boot Replacement
Time to freshen up and replace a dry rotted shift boot? This tech article goes over what is involved and walks you through the process.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Clutch Pedal Bushing Replacement
The bushings wear out over time creating free-play in the clutch pedal and reducing clutch feel and performance. Replace them using our easy steps.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Replacing Your Parking Handbrake Cover
You have to look at this all the time, why not have it be shiny and new?
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Interior Switches Replacement
Follow our easy steps to replace faulty window and door switches.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)
Remove and Replace Your Trunk Release Button
Applies to: 325i (2006-2013), 325Xi (2006-2013), 330i (2007-2013), 330xi (2006), 328i (2007-2013), 335i (2006-2013)
E46 trunk release buttons take a lot of abuse. Breaking under constant stress. See how to replace yours in this tech article.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
How to Replace Your Glovebox Compartment Lock
Glove compartment latch problems usually indicate a faulty lock or lock lever. In this tech article we show you how to replace the lock and associated parts.
Applies to: BMW 325i (2001-2005), BMW 325Xi (2001-2005), BMW 325Ci (2001-2006), BMW 325ti (2001-2004)
Sunroof Glass and Shade Replacement
In this tech article I will cover how to remove the sunroof glass panel and repair the sun shade.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00
Ignition Lock Cylinder Replacement
The ignition lock cylinder wears out over time making it hard to unlock steering wheel and start your BMW E46.
Applies to: BMW 323i/Ci (1999-00), 325i/Ci (2001-05), 325Xi (2001-05), 330i/Ci (2001-05), 330xi (2001-05), 328i/Ci (1999-00)

All BMW Technical Articles

BMW E30 3-Series Technical Articles
BMW E36 3-Series Technical Articles
BMW E46 3-Series Technical Articles
BMW E90 3-Series Technical Articles
BMW 3-Series F30 Technical Articles
BMW E39 5-Series Technical Articles
BMW E60 5-Series Technical Articles
BMW Z3 Technical Articles
BMW X3 Technical Articles
BMW X5 Technical Articles
BMW Z3 Technical Articles
BMW Z4 & Z4M
BMW 2002 Technical Articles
BMW 2002 Technical Articles

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