ok folks, i have a chance to buy a 1994 325i. it is in need of a motor (old
motor is out of car). body of the car is in great shape other than a small
spot of rust starting to bubble. interior is in great shape. i can pick it
up for $400. anyone know how hard of a job it would be putting a different
used motor in it? how much am i going to be spending on a used engine (seen
them on ebay from $600-$2400)? is the car worth $400 the way it sits? any
online diagrams of engine removal/replacement?
sorry for all the dumb questions...........im a honda guy.
There probably are online diagrams; most car manuals that you can buy
at Schucks/Pep Boys/etc have them, too.
$400 sounds right *IF* the electronics are ok, *IF* the suspension is
in good shape, and *IF* the rust is only superficial. You also don't want
put an engine too different from the previous one as the electronics/engine
controls are matched to the engine.
Your questions show you aren't dumb, just inexperienced. You need
the help of someone experienced to do an engine replacement if you
are planning to do it yourself; it's not a job for a tyro, although arguably
it's easier to do for BMW than Honda. Be sure to replace the clutch,
clutch plate and throw-out bearing if it's a manual, and the guibo in any
You don't mention where the rust is...
The only real rust trap on the E36 is the rear wheel arches, and be
warned, it's usually worse than it looks. It's a double skin and traps
dirt. The rust usually starts on the inside and works it's way through
the inner skin. Then the damp can works it's way between the skins and
eventually starts to bubble through from the inside of the outer
panel. You see a small bubble, but believe me, there's 10 times that
hiding under the paint!
Only other place I've seen rust is the lower boot/trunk lid corners
(no problem, it's a panel, get a new one) and around the lower boot
lip edge on the main body of the car where the rubber can sometimes
trap moisture, again not too much trouble as it's not a visible area
and you can do a good repair without having to worry too much about
the appearance, what isn't covered by the rubber or light unit is
hidden by the boot lid when it's shut.
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