Dec 242012

Happy holiday wishes to all. Before traveling to be with family this holiday season, I took care of worn sway bar end links on my 1999 M3.

Recently I replaced my rear shocks, and not soon afterwards starting hearing a soft clunking sound when turn right and going over bumps. It didn’t affect driveability, and I’ve been busy with other things. So initially I considered tackling the issue in the spring.

But it was irritating, and I decided to fix it sooner. Many thanks go out to Hollin Hall Automotive, my local shop that diagnosed a worn sway bar end link as the cause of the noise. I ordered two replacement links from Lemforder at half the price of OE, and also two replacement bushings as well for the rear sway bar brackets. No reason not to replace those while I was replacing the end links.

This is a job that is easy to visualize but requires a lot of elbow grease. Luckily I had access to a lift, but it was still difficult to pull off the new links. And it was very difficult to put the new Lemforder links on, which have a smaller opening for the end of the sway bar than the originals.

All purpose grease was getting me nowhere. Silicone spray is a must – once I sprayed some on the links they went on pretty easily. The other somewhat tricky part was accessing the left bracket and bushing, which are located behind the muffler so there is much less room to maneuver. Both the sway bar end link and the brackets take a 13mm socket head.

Here are some pictures. This spring I’ll know to replace the front sway bar links and brackets when I refresh the front shocks. In the meantime my wife bought me a super Christmas gift for the M3 — that story should be up next week. Merry New Year!

Right Sway Bar Link


Nut that secures link to control arm – circled


Right End Link and Bracket


Replacement Part


Old vs. New -- Note the smaller link end opening

Old vs. New — note the smaller link end opening

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  2 Responses to “Sway Bar End Link Replacement On My BMW E36 M3”

  1. Thanks Chris. Suspect have same prob on my ’96 328i vert.

  2. Appreciate the information, looked at small hole on my new Lemford links and thought can that be right!
    So feel better now about moving ahead. 98 M3 covert

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