2004 BMW 325 control arm

Tiny
JOHNNY_D!
  • MEMBER
  • 2004 BMW 325
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 83,000 MILES
How do you change the passanger side low control arm?
i bent mine the other night and have the replacement but dont know how to put it in.
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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009 AT 6:39 PM

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Tiny
DR LOOT
  • EXPERT
A control arm has a ball joint connecting at the spindle which unbolts in a similar fashion the way a tie rod connects. It also has a ball joint in the middle at the elbow that provides a pivot point and attaches to the cross member. The other end of the control is pressed into a metal ring that bolts to the frame. I am assuming that your difficult lies in the fact that your control are came without this metal ring, and you are expected to remove the ring from the old control are and reinstall it. By the way, the ring is commonly called a lollipop around here because of the similar shape. The control arm is pressed into a rubber bushing in this ring which makes it tricky to remove. I use a press together with some specially made plates that are just the right size so that I can press on the metal parts with out stretching the rubber. Using a press in a manner which causes the rubber bushings to stretch is a good way to see metal projectiles flying around the room. If this is beyond your capability I suggest you bring the two control arms to a local machine shop.

This brings us to a second problem. When you try to unbolt the ball joint at the elbow of the control arm, you will probably find it very hard to get a wrench on it, and once it is loose, the ball joint will rotate and make it difficult to remove the nut from the rest of the thread. I've used several techniques to keep the ball joint from rotating. One way that has worked best is to just a small hydraulic jack underneath the control arm to keep the ball joint jammed into it's position with enough friction so that the nut can be removed.

Good Luck
Dr. Loot's Assistant
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Saturday, September 26th, 2009 AT 12:44 AM

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