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      06-18-2021, 08:19 PM   #1
JFG_90
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E90 Suspension: Preventative Maintenance & Protective Sleeves for Desert Environment?

I have a full front and rear shock/strut replacement planned for my sport suspension e90. With the help of this forum, I have a good idea about what shock/strut-related small parts would be good to replace on my 120k mile ride (shock mounts, bump stops, spring pads, etc.).

Being located in a desert environment where heat, dust and lack of moisture are issues, I am wondering:

1] Short of doing a lot more in-depth replacements like bushings, what would some good preventative maintenance be to do with good access to suspension components during shock & strut replacement?

I'm already considering giving anything rubber a spray down with AT-205 reseal:
.

2] Is there anything available that offers better dust protection for the shocks and struts than the factory bellows (front) and dust sleeves (rear)?
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      06-19-2021, 08:18 AM   #2
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Definitely change out the tension struts. They are fluid filled, eventually leak, then your wheels moves forward and backward while accelerating and braking. M3 TRWs are generally what people get.

There are coilover sleeves like the inertia lab shock covers but they will not work on our cars since we have a progressive spring. These will only work on a 2.5" OD
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      06-19-2021, 10:58 AM   #3
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Never thought about it before, but using a seal softener/swelling agent on the rubber outside the car is probably a pretty good idea.

Not really sure it will work on load bearing rubber bushings, but for bellows and boots and covers it's probably legit.
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      06-19-2021, 12:37 PM   #4
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that vid is so ummm, yeah ok. if anything add extra grease around the strut bearing and zip tie the Plastic dust boot to the bottom of the strut.
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      06-19-2021, 06:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aphael View Post
Definitely change out the tension struts...M3 TRWs are generally what people get.
Too bad those super nice shock covers won't work on our cars.

I'm seeing that FCP sells an M3 control arm upgrade that's ~$350.

As I understand it the main upgrade going to the M3 setup is a solid tension strut bushing yielding less suspension play. TBH the stock sport handling seems fine to me, and it's hard to know if moving to a less complaint bushing would make handling less comfortable on my daily driver. I'm interested in opinions on this, and I'm also just considering some Powerflex tension strut bushings at ~$125 for the pair.

I am also strongly considering the Powerflex rear shock mounts considering the poor durability of the OEM ones. Seems like a decent investment at ~$75, though again, I don't know if it will make suspension one degree less comfortable than I'd prefer with performance benefits I didn't really need in the first place. I might call Powerflex, or seek out those with direct experience with this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 335i54n View Post
that vid is so ummm, yeah ok. if anything add extra grease around the strut bearing and zip tie the Plastic dust boot to the bottom of the strut.
Yeah, Scotty is quite the guy, but it's hard to knock his advice in this video it seems. Interesting note about zip-tying the boots.

Last edited by JFG_90; 06-19-2021 at 06:14 PM..
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      06-19-2021, 10:14 PM   #6
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Upgraded tension rods are wonderful. You can hear the tires speak through your hands much much more clearly.

It looks like the e90 is a safe application for poly tension rod bushings since it has a ball joint on the other end.

A lot of cars over the years used a silicon/hydraulic bushing because it was required to tilt the axis with the suspension movement. Need to go ball joint on that application, poly tends to fatigue crack control arms.
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      06-20-2021, 02:04 PM   #7
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FCP is a bit more expensive, I pieced around my whole kit around for around 260$ including the headlight rod on amazon/ebay (new). The fluid filled bushings will leak eventually, and it would suck if you have to do another realignment after taking those out which is like another 100$. I changed the whole kit with m3 tension struts and the LCA which adds more camber and reduces understeer. You will probably only need the tension struts which are around 60-65$ each if you just daily drive the car.

The at205 will probably work fine on boots. It just conditions and prevents them from cracking. Theres no harm in doing so.
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      06-20-2021, 03:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aphael View Post
FCP is a bit more expensive, I pieced around my whole kit around for around 260$.
What's your experience been moving to the M3 setup from stock, particularly in regards to increased NVH? TBH I'm leaning toward not taking any steps that would make the stock sport suspension any less compliant.
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