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Faults, Fixes and DIY Please share your experience and knowledge with other members by contributing your own DIY, or by helping another member find the elusive fix!


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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 01:24:08 AM   #1
lax01
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Default DIY: E46 M3 Spark-Plugs with Pictures

Disclaimer: This is merely a reference, please do not attempt if you are not comfortable with doing work on your car

Car: 2002 BMW M3 (Build Date 11/01)

Parts Needed:

6 x Spark Plugs (I used Denso Iridium IXU24 5309 purchased from Sparkplugs.com)



Tools Needed:

Torx T30 (pictured above) - used to remove Micro-filter holder, definitely needed
Torque Wrench
5/8 Spark-Plug socket
1/4 Drive Ratchet
3/8 Drive Ratchet
10mm socket
1 or 2 3/8 drive extension (12" is probably not enough)

As this is the first time I attempted any DIY work on my car, I took a good mental picture of what the engine bay look like; this will hopefully prevent any confusion later. You can also take a photograph of it to have a real picture of it.

I started by removing the plastic piece that holds the electrical lines that go over the engine:



There are 4 plastic (read: easily breakable) that hold the cover to the microfilter holder:



Carefully pry those open and remove the wrapped electrical line from inside. Make sure nothing is still connected to the microfilter holder since we will be removing this

Next, undo the three spring-load screw/clips from the top of the microfilter holder.



You can now pull that piece forward exposing the actual micro-filter:



Remove the micro-filter (and replace if needed)

Once the micro-filter is out of the way, 4 T30 Torx screws are exposed:



Unscrew all 4 and gently pull on the Micro-filter holder to remove from car (might take a little bit of prying and maneuvering to actually remove)

Location of all 4 screws:



Next Remove the PCV line by pushing on the clips (red arrows) and pulling off of the engine



Also remove the oil cap



With the 10mm socket, un-screw the 6 nuts holding the plastic engine cover (note: be careful not to drop any)

When you have removed all 6, this is what you should have:



Carefully remove the plastic engine cover and place it to the side

Replace the Oil Cap to stop any unwanted dust or dirt from getting into the engine (I also replaced the PCV fitting but didn't push it down all the way)

Next, carefully remove the spark-plug wire loom which is being held in place by two clips. Push the two clips together and put the wire loom to the side (do not completely unravel, this is simply gives you more space to work)



Picture of the clip:

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2004 Porsche GT3
2002 M3 Carbon Black - sold
2012 Ducati Streetfigher 848 - sold

Last edited by lax01; Wed, Feb-28-2007 at 01:19:08 PM.
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 01:29:38 AM   #2
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Next, the removal of the coil pack and coil pack connection:




The top portion of the coil pack rotates up and allows you to unplug the coil pack connection from the actual coil pack. Un-plug the coil-pack and then simply use the top of the coil pack to expose the spark plug

Once you have removed the coil-pack, use the 3/8 drive wrench, the 3/8 drive extension(s) and the 5/8 spark-plug socket to remove the sparkplug:



The spark-plug is typically tight and takes a little bit of force to get moving. Put a little bit of leverage on it but do not strip the actual spark plug (bad). If you happen to strip the spark plug, take a sip of beer, re-assemble and take your car to a local mechanic

Finally locate your new spark plug. I use high-temp anti-seize on the threads to make sure I can safely remove them later.



Hand-screw the new spark-plug back in and then hand-tighten with your 3/8 ratchet



Finally torque to 22 ft/lbs with your torque wrench



Carefully re-seat the coil-pack on the spark-plug and then reconnect the cable:



Make sure the coil-pack is seated fully on the spark-plug

Repeat for the other 5 spark plugs

Complete the job by re-installing the plastic engine-cover and micro-filter holder in reverse order of above.

NOTE:

I noticed some oil in the spark-plug canal of the cylinder closest to the oil-fill cap (probably from spilling oil while filling).



I simply used a paper towel and long screw-driver to clean the walls before replacing the spark-plug.

After 58K miles, here are my spark plugs






If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask.

-Josh (jbrozen (at) gmail.com)
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2012 Ducati Streetfigher 848 - sold

Last edited by lax01; Wed, Feb-28-2007 at 01:39:14 AM.
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 01:49:37 AM   #3
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very nice write up
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 01:52:25 AM   #4
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Nicely done. Cannot wait to do mine. Pics are great also. Very informative.
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 02:03:56 AM   #5
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Excellent...
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 03:13:03 AM   #6
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sweet.. thank you and great pics..

why did you go with denso's and not the ngk's?
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 03:49:35 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zshiek View Post
sweet.. thank you and great pics..

why did you go with denso's and not the ngk's?
Just overall talk on the boards saying they were good plugs...
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 12:42:07 PM   #8
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Awesome post. Are the mods going to make this thread a sticky?
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 12:44:37 PM   #9
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Great write-up. I can see that you did it, but you might want to remind people to put the oil cap back on after removing the engine cover. Don't want any dust or anything getting in there.

I will definitely use this when doing mine, great job!
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Old Wed, Feb-28-2007, 01:19:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BentleyJava View Post
Great write-up. I can see that you did it, but you might want to remind people to put the oil cap back on after removing the engine cover. Don't want any dust or anything getting in there.

I will definitely use this when doing mine, great job!
Forget to add that part, thanks...

*Added*
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Discussing DIY: E46 M3 Spark-Plugs with Pictures in the Faults, Fixes and DIY Forum - Please share your experience and knowledge with other members by contributing your own DIY, or by helping another member find the elusive fix! at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)