BMW 318/325/M3/525/535/M5 1989-1993 Repair Information

Brake Pads

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



E30 3 Series
  1. Raise and support the vehicle. Remove the front wheels.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the brake pad wear sensor from the harness.
  4.  
  5. Hold the flats of the pin slide and remove the lower pivot bolt.
  6.  
  7. Rotate the caliper up and remove the brake pads.
  8.  

To install:
  1. Clean the brake caliper and all sliding surfaces. Press the caliper piston fully back into the caliper housing. Check for leaking fluid, damaged dust boots and frozen pistons.
  2.  
  3. Install a new brake pad wear sensor in the pad if the plastic part has been worn through on the old sensor. New sensors are not required unless the wire inside the plastic part has been exposed.
  4.  
  5. Install the brake pads in the caliper mount. Lower the caliper over the brake pads. Install a new bolt and torque to 25 ft. lbs. (35 Nm). Check that the pad springs are correctly seated.
  6.  
  7. Connect the brake pad wear sensor to the harness. Check for a good connection as most problems with the sensor circuit are caused by faulty connections. Check that the wire is held by the loop in the dust cover and the connector is held at the clips.
  8.  
  9. Install the wheels and torque to 65-79 ft. lbs. (90-110 Nm).
  10.  

E36 3 Series

See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5



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Fig. Fig. 1: Caliper mounting on the E34 5 Series. The E36 3 Series is similar



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Fig. Fig. 2: Remove the spring by prying the bottom side out



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Fig. Fig. 3: Remove the plastic plugs to access the slide bolts



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Fig. Fig. 4: Slide bolts have a internal hex and should be tightened with a torque wrench



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Fig. Fig. 5: Slide bolts should have a unblemished, smooth surface to ensure proper operation of the caliper

  1. Raise and support the vehicle. Remove the front wheels.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the brake pad wear sensor from the harness.
  4.  
  5. Carefully pry the pad retainer spring out from the hub side and remove.
  6.  
  7. Remove the plastic plugs from the caliper slide bolts and remove the bolts. Remove the caliper and the pads from the caliper.
  8.  

To install:
  1. Clean the brake caliper and all sliding surfaces. Press the caliper piston fully back into the caliper housing. Check for leaking fluid, damaged dust boots and frozen pistons.
  2.  
  3. Install a new brake pad wear sensor in the pad if the plastic part has been worn through on the old sensor. New sensors are not required unless the wire inside the plastic part has been exposed.
  4.  
  5. Install the brake pads in the caliper. Lower the caliper over the caliper mount. Install the bolts and torque to 18-22 ft. lbs. (25-30 Nm). Install the retainer spring.
  6.  
  7. Connect the brake pad wear sensor to the harness. Check for a good connection as most problems with the sensor circuit are caused by faulty connections. Check that the wire is held by the loop in the dust cover and the connector is held at the clips.
  8.  
  9. Install the wheels and torque to 65-79 ft. lbs. (90-110 Nm).
  10.  

E34 5 Series

See Figures 6 through 11



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Fig. Fig. 6: Pull the caliper off the mount. Note the anti-noise compound used on the brake pad



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Fig. Fig. 7: Pull the pads out of the grooves. Support the caliper so not to put tension on the brake hose



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Fig. Fig. 8: Press the piston back into the caliper. Use an old brake pad if available between the clamp foot and the piston



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Fig. Fig. 9: The inner pad has springs to retain the pad to the caliper. Make sure the spring fits into the piston and a light coating of anti-noise compound is used at the piston



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Fig. Fig. 10: Coat the slide bolt with a high temperature lubricant made for disc brake use



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Fig. Fig. 11: The upper brake pad is the outer pad and the lower pad, with the spring, is the inner pad. Replace the mounting spring if loose

  1. Raise and support the vehicle. Remove the front wheels.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the brake pad wear sensor from the harness.
  4.  
  5. Carefully pry the pad retainer spring out from the hub side and remove.
  6.  
  7. Remove the plastic plugs from the caliper slide bolts and remove the bolts. Remove the caliper and the pads from the caliper.
  8.  

To install:
  1. Clean the brake caliper and all sliding surfaces. Press the caliper piston fully back into the caliper housing. Check for leaking fluid, damaged dust boots and frozen pistons.
  2.  
  3. Install a new brake pad wear sensor in the pad if the plastic part has been worn through on the old sensor. New sensors are not required unless the wire inside the plastic part has been exposed.
  4.  
  5. Install the brake pads in the caliper. Lower the caliper over the caliper mount. Install the bolts and torque to 18-22 ft. lbs. (25-30 Nm). Install the retainer spring.
  6.  
  7. Connect the brake pad wear sensor to the harness. Check for a good connection as most problems with the sensor circuit are caused by faulty connections. Check that the wire is held by the loop in the dust cover and the connector is held at the clips.
  8.  
  9. Install the wheels and torque to 65-79 ft. lbs. (90-110 Nm).
  10.  

INSPECTION



  1. Check the pad for thickness. The minimum friction material thickness allowed by BMW is 0.08 in (2.0mm).
  2.  
  3. Check the condition of the friction material. If the friction material is cracking or coming loose from the backing plate, replace the pads.
  4.  
  5. Check the pattern of wear of the friction material. If the pads are wearing unevenly or on an angle, there may be a problem with the caliper hanging up on its slides.
  6.  
  7. If the inside pad is worn more than the outside pad, the caliper may not be sliding on the pins. Clean and check for free movement of the caliper.
  8.  
  9. If one sides set of pads wear more than the other, the caliper with the unworn pads may be frozen. Check that the piston retracts smoothly and that the dust boot is intact.
  10.  

 
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