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DIY Title: Installing an M3 Bumper on a Non-M3 Car
BMW Category: 3-series E36
Author (forum name): Rooz
Date Written: September 29th, 2005
Original Thread: http://www.unitedbimmer.com/forums/thread4072.html
Date Added to KB: October 2nd, 2005

United Bimmer Do-It-Yourself Disclaimer:
The following tutorial is meant as a guide and is not guaranteed to be complete or 100% accurate.  By following this DIY, you understand any work done on your car is at your own risk and we hold no responsibility if you break something.  If you feel uneasy with this risk, we recommend you take your car to a professional mechanic to have the work done.  Otherwise, enjoy yourself and good luck!

Required Tools:
  • Tools - 8 and 13mm wrench
  • Screwdrivers
  • Pliers


First off you need to detach/remove the two moldings that are at each side of the license plate

Once those two are removed, you'll see two 13mm bolts on each side, remove those, they are somewhat tuff, but make sure that they aren't rusted, if they are use some Wd-40 (see picture below)

Also, you'll need to remove 2 screws in the fender well, they are 8mm, it helps if you turns the wheels to get more access to them. And you "might" have some screws on the bottom, they should also be 8mm, get those off too. As you remove the last few bottom ones the bumper will loosen up. All that is holding it is the side hangers, gently pull the bumper forward and it should come off, slowly pull forward, before it hangs down, grad behind it (between bumper and fender covers) and unplug both fogs and both brake ducts, then you're ok to remove it

(hardest part):

I'd like to first say that this is the way that I did it, am sure there are other ways to do it, but I found that this one worked for me best!

First unscrew the fog lights from the back. (I had new brackets, so didn't really care for old ones), but I had to reuse the screws...

Unlike other car makes, BMW ATTACHES the hard part to the bumper it's self... you'll have to take it off. Take all of those black clips off, be careful because you WILL need those again. I used a flathead screwdriver and gently taped on the inside making the tap come out from the top, then with pliers, I gently pull on them, there is quite a few of them, so be patient with them.

Once those are off, the hard/heavy part of the bumper is loose, I noticed mine was dirty so I cleaned it up. If you decide to clean it, keep in mind that you'll have to dry it too...

Then you need to remove ALL the golden clips that you use to screw stuff in. make sure to get the corner ones too, I almost overlooked them. I removed them by tapping behind each on with a flathead screwdriver...

REVERSE (interesting part):

Here is where imagination and memory comes to play!

First thing, slap the big metal piece on new bumper, (this is when you will LOVE polyurethane since it bends and doesn't brake) Try to get it to align with the two middle/lower holes (the ones facing the ground) that the clips go in, and put those two on first (some muscle power is required, lol) then work your way to the outside clips and finally the ones that face the front of the bumper, once you get that on, you're almost home...

Slap all the little golden clips on, then put the fog lights on, and try to have them be flat with the bumper (aiming them basically)

Put the mesh grill on, common sense really...

Here is the part I hate. Unless if you have m3 brake ducts, this part sucks. Your older NON-M brake dust are both bigger and they hook up at a bit diff spot. Use your imagination here.... I made the cuts wider towards the inner part of the bumper and squished the top part to make it fit... was very pleased with the driver side one, didn't get that great a result from passenger side... but how well...

(enjoyable part):

Well, all that you really need to do is the reverse of the first part, just a few tips though..

test fir bumper first, then let it "hang" by the middle 4 screws and connect fogs and brake ducts (also align the brake ducts)

Start the two most middle screws

Get the bumper into the hangers, and hand tight the two middle screws..

lift/lower the bumper to have a perfect gap and tighten all 4 front screws as you do this...

then look at the gap between fender and bumper, if it's perfect just tighten to two screws in fender wells, if not perfect either pushed down or up on bumper while you tighten those two screws..

And finally get the bottom screws, and VOILA

To read user user reviews and comments, or to post your own, please first register on the United Bimmer community forums, then visit the following link to the original thread:
- http://www.unitedbimmer.com/forums/thread4072.html

If you used this DIY and it worked for you, please post and let the author know it was helpful!  This praise alone motivates users to write more DIYs and keep giving back to the BMW community.  Thanks!

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