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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, Jul-13-2017, 11:11:11 PM   #1
MFNATIK
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Default Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or OK?

I just bought the car at 93k miles from a woman owner who got the car in the divorce, it was her husband's and he took care of all the services. She said it had an oil service at 90k, but wasn't sure if they did the full inspection. So just being on the safe side I ordered all the parts and had the full service done. Most everything looked very recent except for the spark plugs which looked like they had 30k miles on them.

My buddy who did the service (he's a BMW Tech) said all the shims were within spec and he felt them all having about the right amount of resistance with his feeler tool. He felt that they'd last until the next 30k mile inspection service so none were change. I trust him so not a big deal, but would this be a sign that previous owner just didn't drive the car very hard so that the shims didn't wear down much?
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Old Thu, Jul-13-2017, 11:46:06 PM   #2
Msidd
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

Believe it or not.. after 80k after the last adjustment i had .. only 2-3 were needed for mine. Seems like it's common to find after 60k not many get loose.

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Old Thu, Jul-13-2017, 11:49:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

It's very common to not have many valves need adjustment, but rare for none to need it unless it was done recently I guess. I can't see putting 30k+ on and no valve needing a reshim. For example, I just did mine after 32k and I reshimmed 5. Maybe it was done recently on yours.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 12:06:15 AM   #4
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

Ok good to know guys! He said there were some that were borderline but he said didn't warrant replacing as it still had enough resistance. He said some may have been 1/1000th off which I think is just a hair and he said wasn't worth it to replace at this time. I should have taken a pic with the valve cover off since he also said things looked clean (no tarnishing or gunking).
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 12:20:42 AM   #5
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

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Originally Posted by MFNATIK View Post
Ok good to know guys! He said there were some that were borderline but he said didn't warrant replacing as it still had enough resistance. He said some may have been 1/1000th off which I think is just a hair and he said wasn't worth it to replace at this time. I should have taken a pic with the valve cover off since he also said things looked clean (no tarnishing or gunking).
Well seeing as the shim range is 0.007 - 0.009 and 0.011 - 0.013, 0.001 out is not nothing. Did you get a printout / did he keep track of the measurements?

As another datapoint, I reshimmed I believe 5-6 at 30k.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 05:11:24 AM   #6
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

I've had two cars need 0 and a few need 1-2. So it's common enough to not feel a massive urge to redo the job to be sure.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 06:09:31 AM   #7
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

By the way the shim does not wear. The valve/valve seat wears making the valve clearance too tight. Too tight and valves burn.


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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 07:37:52 AM   #8
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

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By the way the shim does not wear. The valve/valve seat wears making the valve clearance too tight. Too tight and valves burn.


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Too loose you mean? Any part (lobe, rocker, shim, valve stem) wearing would result in the valve protruding less far into the cylinder.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 07:41:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

Just remember you can tune the engines performance with a valve adjustment. Within the given clearance spec; Tight = torque, loose = horsepower. I prefer mine on the loose side.
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Old Fri, Jul-14-2017, 03:07:21 PM   #10
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Default Re: Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or

Possible to need none but unlikely in my experience, unless, as noted, they were recently adjusted. My black car needed 18 out of 24 at 104k, indicating that it'd not been done for a while.

I'm with Brett - I always run mine as loose as I can get them whilst in spec. Given the shim sizing it's not always possible to get them the "all" loose or tight, though.
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Discussing Just had inspection service, no valves needed to be re-shimmed, is this normal or OK? 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)