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Old 09-07-2006, 09:32 AM
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Mechanic Help

Since I lack the technical and mechanical capability to screw in a lightbulb, the time has come that I seek your assistance. Differential, e36. Its loud. Only intermittenly, and at low speeds, but its loud. WTF can I do about this, without having some greasy schmuck installing a competely new differential and robbing me blind?

Ive heard heavy oil sometimes does the trick, but I cant find ANY on this side of the pond. Any assistance provided would be greatly 'preciated..

Also, is the gear oil easy to replace?
Been there...Done that
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Old 09-07-2006, 09:19 PM
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AW8 AW8 is offline
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I have never had an E36 and as you know I'm only just on my first BMW with my 4.4is.

My wifes Mazda MX-5 seemed to have a noisy diff and box. I checked levels on both and they were low. It only takes a major service to be missed or not done properly and a car can do large miles without a top up or change.

As I recall I topped up the rear diff and replaced the gearbox oil filling it right to full. On the MX-5 the rear diff was a piece of cake - I undid a nut and topped up until it ran out. Same with the box but after I poured lots of lube in I ran out and rather than drive miles on low lube I popped it down to very local garage ( with some lube in!) and got them to drain off and refill.

Garages/workshops will keep plenty of this lube in stock and I bought the top up bottle at a gas station. Bottom line is these jobs are not difficult and easy diy on the Mx-5 but cant speak for the E36.

I believe E36 should ideally have gearbox and diff oils changed every Inspection 2. Don't know if special tools are required.

diff oil change info here http://www.dol.net/~stimpee/rdiff.htm

do some google work to find a hit re the grearbox oil change- sorry ran out of time

If this makes you twitch just take it to an independent - if not mashed/badly worn you could try and see how new lube works after a few hundered miles or possibly go for redline synthetic which may help nurse any neglect from running low. Of course worse case scnario fiff or box may be badly worn and replacement may be best.

Must stress not a techncian or bmw expert- sure others may be able to help more

Good luck - keep us posted after other advice recieved and decision made.

Last edited by AW8; 09-07-2006 at 10:01 PM.
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