Definitive E46 M3 Rod Bearing Thread : How Long Has Yours Lasted?

Discussion in 'E46 M3 (2001-2006)' started by M3Chas, Oct 24, 2017.

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What's Happened with Your Rod Bearings?

  1. Still on the factory originals

    150 vote(s)
    50.7%
  2. Still on the recalled originals (Pre-Facelift Only)

    75 vote(s)
    25.3%
  3. Changed them with less than 50k on the engine

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Changed between 50-100k

    19 vote(s)
    6.4%
  5. Changed between 100-150K

    28 vote(s)
    9.5%
  6. Changed above 150k

    3 vote(s)
    1.0%
  7. I was too late ; bearings were toast before the sump came off

    8 vote(s)
    2.7%
  8. Changed as a preventative measure but I was too late

    2 vote(s)
    0.7%
  9. Changed but I got lucky

    3 vote(s)
    1.0%
  10. Changed but it was pointless

    8 vote(s)
    2.7%
  1. 25 Oct 2017 at 7:32 PM #21
    E46CoupeM3

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    2001 Car, changed at 46K as warranty so probably recall? March 2006

    Not voted, no indication it needed them
     
  2. 25 Oct 2017 at 8:07 PM #22
    dc2100k

    dc2100k A mere Chipper

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    2002 car with BMW recall done in 2007 at 47k. No problems up to now at 101k and I don’t anticipate any in the foreseeable as the car only does around 4k per annum.
     
  3. 25 Oct 2017 at 8:12 PM #23
    Obioban

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    replaced at ~120,000, and they were TOAST.
     
  4. 25 Oct 2017 at 8:40 PM #24
    mattmk1

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    2001, 165k miles, recall carried out at 18k, no issues.

    Serviced as per the schedule, approx every 12k.

    Also original headgasket/SMG pump.

    Same point as always from me, mileage is irrelevant, its how its been racked up. Low miles = short journeys, heat cycles, varying loads, = wear to everything.
     
  5. 25 Oct 2017 at 9:05 PM #25
    r88cly

    r88cly Rocking a new hat

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    Following this closely, as its been annoying me that people are banging on about this being an essential job, even though, as far as I can tell, only one engine on this entire forum has gone bang.

    The paranoia got to me too, had an oil analysis and came back fine, but now theres a thread saying that even that isnt accurate :confused:

    To put this in the same sentance as the subframe is a joke, thousands of subframe failures compared to 1 or 2 bearing failures from what I can see. Copper showing doesn't mean its going to go bang any time soon, considering its taken a 100k miles to get like that
     
  6. 25 Oct 2017 at 10:12 PM #26
    DavidMC

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    Mines on 111k. 2004 (facelift). Had it since it was 3 years old (2007) with 20k on it. I'm the 3rd owner. First was a GP (for what that's worth - then it was an approved used and sold to a small business owner - who sold it to me to invest in his business.

    Have been advised to do a load of things (VANOS/HG etc). Now it's had leak down - that's fine. It still has Mondial warranty and the 'noisy' VANOS was accepted as a warranty claim but the dealer had a long sit down with me (mechanics present) and advised against it as new units sound much the same!! It works and the most nasty issue (loose bolts) has its own sound.

    Anyway the bottom end is likely to last if the engine is warmed up properly each time its driven (mine is) and I do oil changes at 7500 miles so I'd say I have invested in that so I'm chancing it to 150k at least :)

    Car is only used for long journeys (holidays) so v few cold starts. I think that will make a difference too. Also it is not used in winter...

    Duty cycle will influence this and I'm confident in my decision making process (and I have a warranty) :)
     
  7. 25 Oct 2017 at 10:23 PM #27
    Reg

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    126k facelift. Did head gasket this year but rod bearings ok.
     
  8. 26 Oct 2017 at 7:22 AM #28
    M111HOO

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    Just had mine done on 154k, it was also done on recall.

    I had mine done for no other reason than piece of mind, 2 of the shells were showing copper, so I was lucky!
     
  9. 26 Oct 2017 at 7:34 AM #29
    sdwalts

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    Mines on 175k miles and I’ve not had them done in the 3yrs I’ve owned the car. Is there a way of finding out if the recall has been done?
     
  10. 26 Oct 2017 at 7:47 AM #30
    Jimbo25

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    Can we include pictures where possible to try and understand what state they're in.

    As already mentioned, copper showing isn't the end of the world.
     
  11. 26 Oct 2017 at 8:16 AM #31
    M111HOO

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    The stealer should be able to tell you mate
     
  12. 26 Oct 2017 at 8:38 AM #32
    lambo555

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    Mine done 111,000 and is running fine the acp has cracks this was identified at BMW when it was having it airbag recall, but the car is booked in for this sorting in the middle of November along with the shells and updated vanos unit and cam bolts i will be asking them to take pic's of the work to go on my car thread and will add the pic's of the shells on here :thumbsup:
     
  13. 26 Oct 2017 at 10:09 AM #33
    Litchy

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    Forums should come with a government warning sign for your wallet. It's funny cause these things gather momentum and then become the M3 law. I can imagine all the Indy's sitting around a table saying "I can see bearings are being discussed on the forums" as I'm sure they must have been inundated with calls over the last few weeks....I rang mine last week and he wouldn't even take my money as he said he'd done 2 in 12 years.

    That said, I can see why people do them for peace of mind but I want to do things for the right reason on the basis that there's some justification in doing so. I also already have warranty. That said, £700 isn't the end of the world but I'd sooner spend it on something like towards the subframe that I know is probably money well spent....
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2017
  14. 26 Oct 2017 at 10:44 AM #34
    TomKED

    TomKED On the path

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    I purchased my M3 as a shell without engine as the engine had gone pop, likely due to the shell wearing down then the rod seizing (the rod came out the block). (~130k miles)

    The replacement engine I purchased (it was known to have top end issues, but a complete rebuild was already decided on) had nearly gone through the shell and had already scored the crank (100k mile engine)...
     
  15. 26 Oct 2017 at 11:01 AM #35
    WIL35

    WIL35 On the path

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    Am coming up to 190k miles and I assume they are the originals (July 2003 build date). Bought the car 4 1/2 years ago with 115k, have been doing 10k oil changes since then with BMW filters and the right Castrol oil.

    It gets used daily (a gentle 3 mile station run), always wait for the air pump to finish before setting off. It does plenty of longer journeys too and frequently gets fully revved once the oil is up to near the middle of the oil temperature gauge.

    I was thinking of getting the bearings changed when/if it gets to 200k, although as has been said, with all the paranoia perhaps I ought to get it done sooner.
     
  16. 26 Oct 2017 at 11:43 AM #36
    Turbosmed

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    Just had mine done at JWS in Chesterfield. Mint service and john is a true enthusiast. I'll be going back for his version of the 'vince' brace. Mine was on 123,000 miles. Had a millers analysis and showing 23 ppm copper. All bearings were worn evenly rather than most which seem to have 1 or 2 with extreme wear and others that are fine. Also had my oil pump replaced as the pressure relief valve was damaged so could of been running over or under pressure (could be the reason for the bearing wear?). Interestingly the oil pump has been updated a number of times over the years and I believe the latest one has some ceramic coated components so maybe the oil pump design could contribute to the bearing wear.

    Don't think every engine will go bang if showing copper just depends how bad it is really. John had 2 other E46's in there when mine was in who I'd imagine wish they'd had it done though because there engines had spun shells and I'd rather pay the cash to get them renewed than shell out for another engine then fitting and getting them renewed on that. No brainer really.
     
  17. 26 Oct 2017 at 12:17 PM #37
    JamesNL

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    Changed as a precaution at 140,000 miles.

    No shells found to be out of spec or degraded to an extent that needed changing. No scuffing, scoring or pitting.

    Ultimately they didn't need doing and on inspection would have been fine for a very considerable time after.

    2003 03 track car. 140,000 miles, original bearings (no history anywhere of the bottom end ever being apart in a very detailed history file). Oil changes every 6-9000 miles in my ownership over the last 4 years.

    I'm now £850 lighter but in hindsight it really wasn't necessary.
     
  18. 26 Oct 2017 at 12:20 PM #38
    Benchmark

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    vid incoming of mine having them changed at 132k.
    Its a 2001 model that had the recall at 36k.
     
  19. 26 Oct 2017 at 12:35 PM #39
    toplad

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    Not change any on my previous M3, not worried either.
    Internet paranoia
     
  20. 26 Oct 2017 at 3:34 PM #40
    flamez

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    it's not something I think we need to worry about unless your cars been abused. e92 is the one to worry about
     

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