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E46General discussion and technical help for 1999-2004 3 series cars.
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Your Ride: VW Jetta
What to expect with 90-110K miles
I am thinking about buying a used 3 series... if I do, I will probably end up with a vehicle with mileage around 100K.
I was just wondering what I might expect in terms of MAJOR service issues... what are common problems/failures for this car with that many miles on it? (I know it does depend somewhat on the prior owner's care of the vehicle)
It would help to know what year 3 series you're looking at. If it's an E36 ('92-'99), I may be able to help . . At 100k, the first thing that comes to mind is a radiator replacement. And definitely change the water pump if the seller cannot state or prove it's been changed recently. You'll want one with a metal or composite impeller, not the plastic type; not sure if you'd even find the plastic impeller versions these days anyway. Lastly here's a good read on what things to watch for:
^^^No I didn't mean the water pump gets replaced every 100k. It's more like 60k. But the E36 & some E46's had a notorious and unpredictable water pump failure at any mileage in models that employed the plastic impellers. Problem is, you can't tell from outside the engine what the pump is made of, so it's always best to replace once you buy the vehicle.