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Old 01-02-2005, 11:54 PM   #1
nosbaby
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starter replacement ??'s

ok...here's the deal. Pretty sure the starter is bad on my 92 325i. All fuses look good. Car will pop start fine. Checked for power at the starter, and not sure which is the switched terminal, looks like the top one (as mounted in the car), and I get around 12v when the switch is turned. So....to my question. How the hell do you get this thing out? Doesn't look like enough room anywhere to get this thing out when unbolted. Looks like either the intake has to come off or the fuel filter/lines. I swear I'm going to buy "the" book , but the started just went out, and after having to replace my laptop this weekend....don't have the extra $40 after buying the $140 starter also Please help
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Old 01-03-2005, 08:36 AM   #2
Justin e36
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You can reach it from inside the engine compartment if you remove the intake manifold... but you'll need some skinny arms to do it without scraping yourself up: removing the manifold is a HUGE pain. It doesn't come off without removing and moving out of the way a large bunch of harnesses. You also have to disconnect several hoses from underneath, which requires you to have skinny arms, and to reach all the way through the manifold to reach them. Either that, or you need to remove the oil filter canister. With a 4-banger engine you can access it without removing the intake manifold. Lots of room to play in.

Your other option.. (much easier) is to access it from below. Remove your left side control arm, X-brace (if you have one), tranny brace, and lower the back of the tranny... it's quite easy from below. There are some who have managed to do it from only removing the lower control arm bushing bracket.

Hope this helps,
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Old 01-03-2005, 11:54 AM   #3
nosbaby
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wow....thats alot of stuff to remove to take out a strater! LOL. Oh well....I've replaced the control arm on the passenger side and have been planing to do the drivers side anyway, so I guess now is the time to do it huh? Thanks alot....guess I better get to it when our ice storm stops!
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Old 01-04-2005, 09:19 AM   #4
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this was a pain when I have done it on the 328is, I did it from underneath near the tranny. I found it was easier with a lot of extension and swearing.

The tough part was to put the screws back in.
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Old 01-04-2005, 02:11 PM   #5
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Yeah I hear ya. At least I have access to a hoist, so I'll just take off the control arm, being I need to replace it due to a loose ball joint anyway. Anyone know where the starter relay is on this car? I really need to get that dang book! Next week I hope! I want to just change the starter relay also, for piece of mind.
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Old 01-04-2005, 04:51 PM   #6
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on a hoist it should be a piece of cake... as bruno said, putting the screws back in can be a pain... the reason is, there are two different styles of starters. Threaded ones, and non-threaded ones. The non-threaded starters (likely what you've got if it's new) will need some bolts to secure it back on and is a pain. If you can get a pre-threaded starter, go for it.

As for the starter relay.. I don't have my Bentley on me for actual part numbers, but I have a Haynes for RHD vehicles.. assuming the relay is the same on RHD vehicles and LHD. Under L/H side of dash. There is a connector strip with 4 relays on it, Look for one on the side with 8.364.174 (8.362.101) Manual gearbox / 8.364.175 (8.362.102) auto gearbox part number on it. Numbers in brackets are the previous part numbers used till 02/02/95 - 28/03/96.
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Old 01-05-2005, 02:34 PM   #7
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cool...I'll look for it...thanks!
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Old 01-05-2005, 10:26 PM   #8
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i took my starter off today, well that and my tranny, best way to do it is take the tranny cross member off and let the tranny lower itself down, then take a shit load of extentions and possibly an impact gun if u have one, then take out the bolts from behind the tranny, its what i did today, ull also have to drop the driveshaft too

when my 5 spd goes in a few days im really not looking forward to putting it back on... it was a royal pain in the ass to take it off and putting it back on will be even harder!
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Old 01-05-2005, 10:57 PM   #9
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you can take the starter off without removeing the intake, I've done it a couple of times. Take the coolant tubes behind the starter off as well as remove the dipstick tube and you should be able to jiggle it out, mind you this was on a 318I
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Old 01-08-2005, 04:52 PM   #10
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well i ended up having to take my intake manifold off today because i gave up trying to wiggle the starter in place, after some sever blows with a hammer and a lot of banged fingers and swearing and wrench throwing i finally got it in place, the part that was holding me back was the dowl pin was a very tight fit, no way i could have done it otherwise unless i removed the manifold

heres a pic of it off to give u an idea of what a mess it looks like underneath
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File Type: jpg manifold1.JPG (48.4 KB, 126 views)
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Old 01-12-2005, 10:32 AM   #11
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ok....quick question for those of you that have recently done this. Which is the terminal with the wire from the switch? Looking at the back of the solinoid with the battery cable on the top, is it the left or the right. No one in town has one, they have to order it, so I don't have one too look at. I want to do more testing before I yank the car all apart to change it.
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Old 01-12-2005, 01:59 PM   #12
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ok...after doin' some searching it looks like it should be the outside (right hand side) terminal. I DO get 12v in the start position....damnit.....guess it's time to start ripping it apart
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Old 01-12-2005, 02:17 PM   #13
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check the brushes inside the starter, chances are they might be worn out and making bad contacts, its a $2 fix if they are worn

hope this helps!
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Old 01-12-2005, 02:52 PM   #14
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well, the solenoid doesn't make any noise at all, no click, no hum, nothing. So I'm gonna say it's toast. It costs as much by itself as the whole reman starter, so I'm pretty much stuck I think. No big....just a maintenance item.
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Old 01-13-2005, 02:17 PM   #15
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Sorry I've been out of this thread for a while. Anyway, yeah if it's getting power but it doesn't even click over then it's likely toast. If it clicks, but does not turn.. then it's the brushes or the contacts to the terminal not providing enough juice to spin it up.

Replace the starter and you should be good to go... make sure to wire it up to a extra battery you've got laying around with some wires to make sure the new starter is spinning okay before wiring it up.
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