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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 Sun, Sep-12-2010, 07:55:10 AM   #11
DrifterX27
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Default Review, No Dyno

Alright I installed the headers today, and I felt that other should know what they are getting themselves into. I have done a large amount of automotive work, mainly on BMW's and this was the hardest so far. So let's discuss the process I went through today.

Install:

Being in the Air Force, we have access to the base auto shop, and I used their lift and air tools. We started at 10:30am today (saturday) and finished 7:30pm. It was a long process, and I went in thinking I knew everything. The overall process wasn't too bad, but ran into a few issues. First was the OEM section 1 uses torx bolts that have male ends, so we had to goto autozone to get the socket for it. Then the next issue we had was, the header flange is too thick for the oem studs. You can't install the nuts to hold the header, so we went to home depot and pick up some bolts and washers that were a little longer than the studs, and installed them that way. I called the BMW dealership and they didn't have the E36 studs. The big issue was we had was we had to remove the old studs and that took forever!!! Seriously almost 2 hours to remove all the studs. The socket worked, and the bolts were a perfect replacement after getting the stuck studs out. The headers definitely line up to the head just fine. Also you can't install the O2 sensors, none of them. They won't fit when you try to install the header, so you have to use the plugs that came with the header. We removed the sensors from the car so I will have to get O2 sims. The EGT installed just fine too.

After:

The sound is insane!!! I have a race flow x pipe with no resonator, and holy crap this car is loud. It has a very exotic sound now, noticing some droning between 2000-2500 only, so I might get a resonator to fix that. It is doesn't rattle and that was my only concern. I will need to do a video for you guys. I haven't taken it on the highway to see the difference in power, but the dyno will tell me for sure. Waiting on the software and filter to come in.

Verdict:

Overall I think this is a good buy. The fitment is good, the quality seems good, and the results are pending. The things you should keep in mind for this, you will have to remove your O2 sensors, and will have to replace your header studs. I had a lift and air tools so I had the best possible setup to do this swap. If you are doing this in your garage on jack stands, then I expect you to take 2 days to do this. Probably one to remove and one to install.

I still have to get my software, filter, and O2 sims. Dyno will be sometime this week depending on when I get the software and filter.

There are a few videos on youtube by one guy that tells you how to do this install. Watch them!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8T23Ltf6yo
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 07:59:22 AM   #12
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You have no 02 sensors at all in the car now?
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:00:07 AM   #13
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That is correct
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:01:20 AM   #14
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That is correct
That's going to be a problem.
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:04:20 AM   #15
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I agree, we couldn't try every variation to get them installed with the headers, but for the most part you can't install them because they hit the side of the heat shield. When I goto the shop to install the software I will check and see if it is possible, we were kinda rushed today. The shop closed at 6:30 and we left at 7:30.
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:07:45 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by DrifterX27 View Post
I agree, we couldn't try every variation to get them installed with the headers, but for the most part you can't install them because they hit the side of the heat shield. When I goto the shop to install the software I will check and see if it is possible, we were kinda rushed today. The shop closed at 6:30 and we left at 7:30.
The car isn't going to run correctly without primary 02 sensors. Even with software. Your going to have to weld new 02 bungs in them.
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:10:56 AM   #17
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Alright. I will try and get the sensors installed or find a way to get them welded.
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:13:09 AM   #18
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Alright. I will try and get the sensors installed or find a way to get them welded.
I hear that its a pretty common problem with the bungs being in the wrong spot. Its no biggie to weld some new bungs on there though.
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:22:54 AM   #19
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What brand of headers you installed, any cat on your system?
I am planning to do this job my self installing SS stepped v2 s and racing SS cats, hopefully the O2 s will scew right in
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Old Sun, Sep-12-2010, 08:26:11 AM   #20
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I have the headers from the group buy. I think you will have no issue with that SS setup.
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Discussing M3 dyno, preparation for header install 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)