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Thread: Do front bushings need to be replaced in pairs for both sides or one side?

  1. #1

    Do front bushings need to be replaced in pairs for both sides or one side?

    My driver's side bushing sounds like it needs to be replaced. When I go over a speed bump(mound), the driver side tends to make a thunk metallic sound, that wasn't there before. The front passenger side goes over the bump without a sound. If it is the bushing, which need to be visually verified ( and which I have not replaced before since I got the car about 30k miles ago), I thought you can replace one side at a time and not both?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Leesburg, VA
    You (often) don't know what parts were replaced before you purchased the car. Perhaps a single control arm & bushing were done previously due to a collision, off-road incident or monster pothole. It's a good idea to do them both at the same time. If they're original they're the same age/mileage. The outer shoulder of the road is more likely in bad shape vs. the inside lane, so passenger side components can be more worn. Our pampered one-owner 328i exhibited worn front lower control arm bushings at 40k miles.

    Is it the bushing or ball joint that's making noise? Are the sway bar links tight? They often transmit noise when loose.
    2006 330ci ZHP - Silbergrau Metallic / Stoff Laser/Anthrazit / Alu Black Cube trim / Adaptive Xenon headlights / HK hi-fi system / heated front seats

  3. #3
    Assuming you're referring to the front control arm bushings, it's silly not to replace them in pairs. They're pretty cheap and can be replaced in 30 minutes if you know what you're doing. Part of BMW's FCAB procedure requires you leave the car undisturbed for some hours in order to let the bushings relax. Personally, I feel this is unnecessary as long as your orientation is correct. Use dish soap to aid in installation as it will dry to a powder.
    - '03 ZHP Schwartz Sedan/6MT: Bistein/H&R, PFC Z-Rated, Square 235's, Supa-Silky-Soft Coby Treatment (194K)
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Lexington, KY
    I have done it both ways.

    The guy who took care of my car did one at a time. I was OK with it, then I did the other side like 6 months later.

    When i was the one doing the job, I did both fronts.

    Couldn't tell that either way made a difference.
    325i, 2005, 5MT, Silvergrey, leatherette, Sport package; CDV delete, KONI STR-T & KYB Excel-G, Weisslichts, Stewart H2O pump

    328i, 2010, 6MT, Spacegrey, dakota leather, M-sport packages; all stock][IMG]

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1970
    Branford, CT
    Do them in pairs and align the car once. Doing any other way is just going to cost you more in the long run.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
    2005 330i ZHP / 6MT
    Imolarot / Naturbraun

    It's not the car you drive, it's how you drive it.

  6. #6
    I replace a set(both side) of bushing for the control arms. I was shown the one driver's side bushing located nearest the middle of the car has worn. Just as I expected. My steering wheel behaves like it supposed to; solid and without shaking.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Austin, Tx
    Quote Originally Posted by az3579 View Post
    Do them in pairs and align the car once. Doing any other way is just going to cost you more in the long run.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
    This. And I don't even think you can get a quality bushing in anything less than in pairs?
    Current Garage... '00 R11S, '09 HP2S, '12 R12GSA, '00 Black 323iT (wife's), '02 Alpine 325iT (Eileen, Track Wagon), '02 Japan Rot 325iT

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