I have a 325 XIT model 2002, that I bought in November 2001. It has 47K
miles and I found today that both rear springs are broken!
It is normal that to happen for that car's age? I always use the car in
the city or highways and never off road.
The long story:
Today I was installing mud guards for front and rear when I have
noticed that one rear spring is broken. The last ring from the bottom
of that right side spring was broken. Only the contact surface where
that ring would connect with the rest of the spring was rusted, nothing
else on the rear suspension was rusted.
Then I've checked the left side suspension and I found that the spring
on the left side has the same problem. This time the last ring of the
spring was not detached, it was still placed on the rubber support.
I live in New England and I am aware that is more humidity and salt
here on the reads then elsewere, but do you think that's normal for a 4
year old car?
The car made a squeaking noise when I lifted it on the jack, but
otherwise I didn't hear a sound. Are these broken springs a safety
Do you know if it was any recall from BMW for these suspension parts
that I was not informed?
No, it is not "normal" for springs to break on such a low mileage, young
car. I would check with the local BMW dealer to see if there is any
kind of an unofficial recall or service bulletin out on those springs.
In any case you will definitely be wanting to get them replaced and even
though you are probably outside of the new car warranty, this being such
an obvious design defect you may want to press for some warranty relief
from the dealer on the job
If that made a difference I'd expect it to take out the dampers first.
But in the UK with my E39 on standard suspension, taking speed bumps at
over the nominal 20 mph causes the front spoiler to ground on the way down.
*One of us is thinking about sex... OK, it's me.
Dave Plowman firstname.lastname@example.org London SW
I always drive carefull over the speed bumps: maybe 2-3 mph. And in the
whole life of the car , maybe I went over 10 or 20 speed bumps.
Another thng is that I didn't mention was that I never overload the
trunk with heavy things.
The fact that both rear springs are broken in the same place (first
ring from the botton) sounds more like a mechanical manufacturing
FWIW, my wife's 2000 E46 had the same thing - about 1 1/4 turn from the
Also, there was a report of this on at least one E39.
I think BMW's incoming QA on outsourced materials , well, sucks, given
issues such as e39 ABS controllers, door handles, radiator necks, radiator
expansion tanks, fan clutches,etc, etc, etc.
There is a real problem when stuff like this passes incoming QC.
When I bought my 2001 M3 with 30k it had a broken spring. ..at least
that's what the dealer told me when I had to take it back with a list
of problems but what do they know?
My '96 740 has two broken rear springs but it is a bit older. I've
never really heard of broken springs until the last few years where it
seems to be not uncommon on many makes of car.
Use it as an excuse to get some eibachs :-)
I would agree with you that this certainly sounds like some kind of
manufacturing defect. Overheating the wire during spring winding could
cause the metal to be coarse grained and brittle. If this is the case the
fractures should have happened pretty early in the car's life and the broken
ends of the wire should be pretty severely corroded. The biggest problem
with this explanation is that it should have happened to several thousand
other people although I guess the ride height may not have been affected
very much by the failure at the first coil. Perhaps this is more widespread
than we know. The only other thing I can think of that might lead to this
failure would be if there was some pretty corrosive chemical trapped between
the rubber pad and the spring - but I think it would take something like
hydrochloric acid or bleach to lead to such a severe attack. Do you happen
to drive the car through an industrial area routinely or is there any other
signs of corrosive attack under the car??
No, I don't live, or drive or park the car in an industrial area where
it could be exposed to corrosive chemical. Under the car are no other
signs of corossion or rust.
On the area where the last coil separated from the spring is a lot of
rust but since I am not an mettalurgical expert I believed that was
caused only by salt on the roads and wet weather here is NE. I would
like to show you some pictures of the fractured section, but I don't
know how to post them.
I don't know how spread this problem is, but I found on a different
that are few people that experienced a similar problem. Since the
simptoms are not less obvious (1inch less on hight?) many people may
have this problem.
I've heard quite a few e36 owners through our website have had the last
coil of the rear springs break off, and that's been on newer cars with
siilar mileage - so I wouldn't say it's completely unheard of. It's
the first thing many people check if they hear a metallic rattling
coming from the rear wheel area.
Don't know why this happens, nor do I agree it's right to expect them
to break - but it does seem to be commonplace on many 3's in my opinion.
I have a 2002 325 xiT with just under 40k miles. It's a fabulous
driving machine. The all wheel drive is fabulous and I hope I will
never buy another vehicle without it.
Lately I have noticed wpring noise at the rear end so will get to my
dealer (Crown BMW - Charlottesville, VA) and have it checked out - the
warranty expires in June 2006.
I also have a 2001 530 iA and it too is fabulous.
I have had a few minor warranty problems and worry about the cost of
repairs once the warranties expire but so far so good.
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