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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 Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:21:22 AM   #1
Proskate81
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Default Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes

I started hearing a scraping type noise coming from my rear right wheel a few nights ago. I haven't driven the car since.

Upon inspection, something is grinding against my rotor. The scratch is not deep, but I'm trying to determine if the problem is a seized caliper, I need new pads, or something else. I read other seized caliper posts and I did not experience any effects other than the noise... no vibrating or steering issues.

I am willing to rebuild the caliper if needbe, but don't want to go through that if the problem is a brake job. There looks to be a decent amount of pad left, but I'm not expert.

Has anybody experienced something like this?? Thanks for the help!





**Update**

We weren't able to get the calipers off entirely, but we were able to move them somewhat freely when loosening the 2 bolts holding them in. I looked down into the pads and didn't see anything unexpected. There wasn't much slack on the brake line to get the caliper the whole way off.

I put the caliper back on and hoped the noise would be gone. My buddy and I did a couple slow passes in my parking garage and the grinding is still there. It also looks like the outermost portion of the rotor is being scored now. See picture below. I alternated between brake and e-brake to see if there was a difference in grinding. It seemed like the grinding was worse when I was using the e-brake. Wtf would be hitting the rotor and causing this??

The rest is outside of my mechanical ability so I'm going to call my tech and see what he says/thinks.

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Last edited by Proskate81; Tue, Oct-04-2011 at 03:21:15 AM. Reason: Update
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:24:04 AM   #2
m3 hal
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

I'd take the pads out and inspect.
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:28:16 AM   #3
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

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Originally Posted by little lai View Post
I'd take the pads out and inspect.
I assume it's pretty simple? I'll search on how to do it. I don't do much work myself on my car.

Knock on wood she hasn't needed much
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:32:49 AM   #4
m3 hal
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

I'm not sure how comfortable you are with wrenching on cars but it's fairly easy to do. Check the madrussian m3 website for a DIY guide.
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:34:59 AM   #5
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

It looks like you may have a foreign object jammed in there. You need to retract the piston and what whats going on.

Hard to be sure - but the rotor looks to be fairly scored.
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 01:41:50 AM   #6
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

How many miles on it? Those aren't originals rotors are they? I just did a caliper rebuild and rotor/pad replacement. It was fairly easy with the right tools.

-gh
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 07:23:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

Quote:
Originally Posted by greenhobby View Post
How many miles on it? Those aren't originals rotors are they? I just did a caliper rebuild and rotor/pad replacement. It was fairly easy with the right tools.

-gh
This is a simple job and cheap.
You can also find rebuilt calipers for about $50 ($250 with no core)

Happened to me as well!
I rebuilt mine with a kit from Naps for $14
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 07:33:24 PM   #8
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

probably a pebble in there
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 08:35:28 PM   #9
Proskate81
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

Quote:
Originally Posted by lmtfi View Post
It looks like you may have a foreign object jammed in there. You need to retract the piston and what whats going on.

Hard to be sure - but the rotor looks to be fairly scored.
I'm hoping that's the problem. The score in the rotors doesn't feel deep and hopefully won't affect anything other than the appearance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by greenhobby View Post
How many miles on it? Those aren't originals rotors are they? I just did a caliper rebuild and rotor/pad replacement. It was fairly easy with the right tools.

-gh

I just hit 80K. They are not the original rotors, they are the Euro rotors. I've had them on for about 20K miles maybe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cducati View Post
This is a simple job and cheap.
You can also find rebuilt calipers for about $50 ($250 with no core)

Happened to me as well!
I rebuilt mine with a kit from Naps for $14
I'm going to take the caliper off, see if there's something in there, and follow the DIYs to determine if the issue is a seized caliper. I don't really know how a seized caliper would cause the scratch in the rotor, but who knows.
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Old Fri, Sep-30-2011, 08:39:27 PM   #10
m3 hal
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Default Re: Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes??

Just an opinion from sitting in my chair looking at the pics, but it seems very unlikely that the caliper is seized or otherwise at fault in this case.
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Discussing Seized Caliper or Time for New Brakes 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)