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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Thu, Dec-25-2014, 08:40:31 PM   #1
bemami
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Default Gear heads jump in on this one...

I'm getting a PPI done in Tampa at Reeves BMW and gonna cough up 300$ for it the stealership charges. Couldn't find a knowledgeable Indy shop in the area. I know the rigor of the inspections can vary greatly. That being said, I will try to find out the criteria that is used beforehand but wanted to see if there where any big ticket items I should ask the tech to look for beforehand. I read through some old posts and included my experiences owning two of these cars. Here is what I came up with ( I didn't include the obvious items like brakes, fluids, etc. that will be included):


Rear subframe mounting points
Scan DME for fault codes
SMG pump
Scan of the vanos with diagnostic tools like BMWs GT1

Anything else?

Thanks
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Old Thu, Dec-25-2014, 08:54:23 PM   #2
deadlysyns
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

one broken tab on the exhaust hub will not be caught unless you do a visual inspection once valve cover is removed.

how many miles? when was last valve adjustment done?
Power steering hose usually leaks
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Old Thu, Dec-25-2014, 09:53:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Quote:
Originally Posted by deadlysyns View Post
one broken tab on the exhaust hub will not be caught unless you do a visual inspection once valve cover is removed.
Yep.

I vote full physical valve train inspection (vanos, valves, cams, hubs, bolts, chain, guides, anything inside there)

Common issues I would specifically look into:

-Recalls (rod bearing, airbags, etc)
-Subframe cracks
-SMG
-Water pump
-Power steering
-FCABS, RTABS, etc
-Flex disc/center support bearing

Might have missed some but thats pretty much the bulk of it.
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Old Thu, Dec-25-2014, 10:34:14 PM   #4
admranger
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

If you're going to pay a dealership to do a PPI, have them pull a service history as a condition of the PPI (some dealers are really fussy about this).
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Old Fri, Dec-26-2014, 04:45:50 PM   #5
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Typical dealer won't catch any valvetrain issues unless you direct them to pull the valve cover and look at specific things. Likewise on the unibody cracks, their bulletin tells them to look in a different spot from where the cracks happen. But if it's a 'vert, cracks are supposed to be a non issue. Scan for codes, maybe run the vanos function test and check for max RPM.
My $.02, from working at the dealer... they are the least likely to perform the type of PPI that you need. "Used Car" inspections are typically handled by apprentices, with an eye toward safety item work (brakes, shocks, tires, belts, hoses...) that can be sold to the used car manager, regardless whether the car is a piece of crap. (body repairs, paintwork, general abuse, etc.)
Maybe they'll let you look at the car when it's in the service bay, you're more likely to see red flags than they are.
Again, just my 2 cents. But I didn't arrive at that opinion randomly!
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Old Fri, Dec-26-2014, 05:48:19 PM   #6
bemami
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Great feedback. It's a vert with 29k mikes!
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Old Fri, Dec-26-2014, 06:51:06 PM   #7
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Going along with what others have said - the basic ppi will not cover the big issues with the car (vanos, subframe). You would need to specifically request them to pull the valve cover, which will cost more. Also, you can only see the rearward 2 subframe mounting points without taking things apart (but you have a vert so not as big of a deal). Also if you have an 01 or 02 check to see if the rod bearing recall was done
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Old Sun, Dec-28-2014, 11:49:48 AM   #8
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Is Lutz Performance still around? I haven't lived in Tampa for almost 4 years. May want to try them. There is another shop by the airport who does inde Ferrari, BMW, Merc... I can't remember their name right now, but can search around.

Found it, C2 Design is the other indee shop that I have used.
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Old Sun, Dec-28-2014, 02:28:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

Quote:
Originally Posted by M Pete View Post
There is another shop by the airport who does inde Ferrari, BMW, Merc... I can't remember their name right now, but can search around.
Vortex Motorsports? They are right next to the airport as well. I think they recently merged with another shop.

I wouldn't go to Lutz Performance personally.
Height Automotive is primarily Porsche, but they do BMW as well and are great.


If you decide to go to Reeves, ask for Tony Brizzolara or Jael Laboy.

Either of them will give you a top notch inspection. I used to work there and I can tell you they both know their stuff, and actually care about these cars. They are there because they love what they do. They are the only 2 people I trust to work on my vehicle.

Last edited by Lukass; Sun, Dec-28-2014 at 02:33:33 PM.
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Old Sun, Dec-28-2014, 02:43:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: Gear heads jump in on this one...

I forgot about Vortex. They are good as well. The BMW CCA chapter did a lot of events in conjunction with them when I lived there.
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Discussing Coolant Flush DIY - Easy Method in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)