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How to Replace Rear Shocks 97-06 BMW 325 Xi

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How to Replace Rear Shocks 97-06 BMW 325 Xi

Created on: 2021-01-16

Check out this video to learn how to remove and replace the rear shocks on your 97-06 BMW 3 Series vehicle. 1A Auto shows you how!

  1. step 1 :Removing the Wheel
    • Partially raise the vehicle off the ground
    • Loosen the 17 mm lug bolts
    • Raise and support the vehicle on jack stands
    • Remove the lug bolts
    • Replace one lug bolt loosely
    • Hammer the tire from the back side if the wheel is stuck
    • Remove the last lug bolt and the wheel
  2. step 2 :Removing the Rear Shock
    • Loosen the lower shock absorber 18 mm through bolt
    • Support the wheel knuckle to prevent it from dropping when the shock absorber is removed
    • Remove the side trunk lining to access the top strut mount
    • Remove the two 13 mm nuts securing the strut mount to the vehicle
    • Remove the lower shock 18 mm through bolt
    • Remove the 17 mm nut at the top of the shock absorber shaft
    • Remove the strut mount assembly from the shock absorber
  3. step 3 :Installing the Rear Shock
    • Compress the shock rod and allow it to fully extend several times
    • Slide the shock boot and bump stop over the shock absorber shaft
    • Slide the strut mount onto the shock absorber shaft
    • Tighten the 17 mm nut onto shock absorber shaft and torque it to 21 ft-lb
    • Insert the shock mount into the vehicle body
    • Mount the lower shock to the knuckle with the 18 mm through bolt
    • Torque the 18 mm through bolt to 74 ft-lb
    • Tighten the two 13 mm strut mount nuts
    • Replace the trunk side lining
    • Raise the vehicle and remove the wheel knuckle support
  4. step 4 :Installing the Wheel
    • Set the wheel in position and line up the bolt holes
    • Replace the 17 mm lug bolts
    • Lower the vehicle with the wheel slightly touching the ground
    • Torque the 17 mm lug bolts in a star pattern to 95 ft-lb
    • Lower the vehicle completely

Tools needed for replacement

  • Pliers, Cutters & misc Wrenches

    Locking Pliers

  • Ratchets & Related

    Socket Extensions

    Torque Wrench

    Ratchet

    1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Sockets - Metric

    13mm Socket

    17mm Socket

    18mm Socket

Installation Video
Watch video

Andy: What's up guys? I'm Andy from 1A Auto. In this video, I'm going to show you how to replace the rear shocks on this 2001 BMW 325xi. If you need parts for your vehicle, click the link in the description and head over to 1AAuto.com. All right, I want to loosen up the lug nuts or lug bolts. I'm going to use a 17-millimeter socket and a breaker bar. Now, with the vehicle lifted up, I'm going to take them off with the same socket and a ratchet. When I go to take the last bolt out, I'm just going to use the socket. I'm going to make sure I hold the wheel because I don't want the wheel to fall. Because once I take these lugs, studs out, the wheel's just going to fall.

I'm going to grab the wheel, slide it off. All right, I am going to crack this bolt free before I support this, but I do want to support this rear suspension before I take this shock off completely. Otherwise, it's going to drop significantly. That'll support the spring for the suspension. I'm going to use an 18-millimeter socket and a breaker bar, loosen this bolt up. It's pretty good. At least it's not frozen in there. Now I'm going to lower the vehicle and support it with a jack stand. All right. I'm going to support it right here. I want to put it somewhere where it's not going to slip off. If you put it over here ... If you put it right here, just be careful. Make sure it doesn't slip off. But I put it right there, it's going to support it a little better and it shouldn't move. So I'll just lower it a little more.

That's good, just enough to support the suspension from going further down. From inside the trunk, your vehicle may have a battery cover. You may have to remove that. There may be some clips in this panel right here, right there. This vehicle does not have those. So I'm just going to peel this out, pull this away. Then you can access the top part of the shock right there. Then we're going to take these two nuts on the sides out. Then we can take the whole shock out with the mount. I'm going to loosen these two nuts up. I'm going to use a 13-millimeter socket and this air ratchet. We actually sell this from 1AAuto.com. You can use a regular ratchet. That would work fine. First I'm going to break the nuts free and then loosen them up.

I'm going to take this bolt out. This is an 18-millimeter socket and I'm going to use this air ratchet. You can use a regular ratchet. Take that bolt out. You can slide the shock right down. There's a couple of different ways we can get this mount off. What I'm going to do is use some locking pliers. I'm going to lock it on the shaft up here. If you are reusing the shock, locking it up here is not going to affect it because the shock's not going to bounce all the way up to there, so that's not a big deal. Or you could take a wrench, put a wrench on this nut, loosen it up, and then find another smaller wrench that fits on the end of this and try to take that off. The problem with that is a lot of times these strip out. So we'll do it this way. Lock those on there. I'm going to use this impact wrench and a 17-millimeter socket. Take this off.

There we go. Take the nut off. You should be able to take the locking pliers off, should be able to take a hammer ... This is really rusted. Normally this should just slide off. But I'll just take a hammer and knock it off. There we go. Just put it on something solid. Hammer that off and there it is.

It's a good idea, whenever you're replacing shocks, to exercise the shock like three to five times. Just push it in, let it extend out and do it again. I'm going to take this boot and this is going to go on this side of the bump stop. That goes on like that. Take this, go down the shock, just like that. I'm going to take this washer. It'd be nice if you had a new one. Just slide that on there. Take the new mount. Install the mount. Then, this washer is going to go on the top like that. Take the nut, Install the nut. Again, take a 17-millimeter ratchet wrench, put that on the nut. Then, I'll just take a six-millimeter wrench and hold the shock from spinning the stud. Tighten this up.

I'm going to use a 17-millimeter socket and a torque wrench. We sell this torque wrench at 1AAuto.com. I'm going to torque this nut to 21 foot-pounds. I can use a pry bar to prevent this from spinning. Just tighten this up. When you're going to torque that nut, if you're having trouble with the shaft spinning, you can take some locking pliers. Because you're putting the locking pliers up high, the lower part of the shock is never going to hit that. So don't be nervous. I can torque this nut. From underneath, I'm going to try to line the mount up, up top. There is a gasket that goes on top of here, so it's a good idea to replace that gasket. Slide that in position.

Then, I push up on the shock itself. Take the bolt, you put a little lubrication on the bolt to help you get it in properly. Now I'm going to tighten this bolt up. I'm going to use an 18-millimeter socket and an air ratchet. You can use a regular ratchet as well. I'm going to use a 18-millimeter socket and a torque wrench. I'm going to torque this to 74 foot-pounds. Now, from inside the trunk, I'm going to put the nuts back on top here and then we'll tighten them down. I'm going to use my a 13-millimeter socket and my air ratchet. You can just use a regular ratchet if you don't have an air ratchet. Now, we can take this panel, slide this back in position. If you have those retainers, push those retainers in.

Let's slide that back just like that. Now, I can raise up on the suspension. Now, I'm going to take the wheel, slide it into position, make sure the hole's lined up and hold the wheel. I'm going to take my 17-millimeter socket and the lug stud and get one started. I can grab the other ones. Now, I'm going to use a 17-millimeter socket and a torque wrench, and I'm going to torque these lug bolts in a star pattern to 95 foot-pounds. Go right around again, just to make sure everything's tight. You're good to go.

Thanks for watching. Visit 1AAuto.com for quality auto parts shipped to your door, the place for DIY auto repair. If you enjoyed this video, please click the subscribe button.

Tools needed for replacement:

    Pliers, Cutters & misc Wrenches

  • Locking Pliers

  • Ratchets & Related

  • Socket Extensions
  • Torque Wrench
  • Ratchet
  • 1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Sockets - Metric

  • 13mm Socket
  • 17mm Socket
  • 18mm Socket


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