Skip to content

Welcome to our BMW and MINI tech blog!
There are more than 1,000 Q&As and DIY guides posted here. Feel free to search by keyword (upper right), browse by category (lower right), or watch one of our helpful videos. Once you've found the answer to your question, you can get the parts you need in our online store – www.BavAuto.com.

BMW E46 3-Series Fuel Pump Relay Location – K96

Oct 27 14

This answer is applicable for many BMWs in addition to the one listed below.

Q
Dear Otto,

Where is the fuel pump relay located on my 2004 330ci?  I was told that it is in front of the glove box, but I looked there and did not see it.

A
According to the Bentley repair manual for the E46 chassis:

All E46 models, exc M3 – The relay is mounted in the relay and module panel in front of the glove box (remove glove box to access).  The fuel pump relay is the first relay on the left, at the top of the panel.  Note that the Bentley manual shows photos of this.

M3 – The relay is mounted in the trunk on the right (passenger) side behind the side trim panel.  The relay is the forward relay in the row of four horizontal relays, in the relay panel.  The Bentley repair manual shows detail of this.

Click the image below for Bentley Repair Manuals:

BavAuto

BavAuto.com

www.bavauto.com

Bavarian Autosport

Cool Carbon ST Brake Pads – The Ultimate BMW and MINI Brake Pad?

Oct 24 14

Cool Carbon S/T: the ultimate brake pads for BMWs and MINIs?

For years we’ve touted the advantages of Cool Carbon S/T brake pads over every other brake pad we’ve tried:
- Made in Germany
- Track- and Autobahn-tested
- Unique brass and ceramic compound
- Higher co-efficient of friction
- Incredibly resistant to fade
- Improved pedal feel
- Rotor friendly, low dust and quiet.

But you don’t just have to take our word for it… listen to what BMW owners are saying about Cool Carbon pads on the forums:

“Street-driven daily driver… I just had performance rotors and Cool Carbon pads installed. … pedal feel is perfect, they’re quiet as can be and the dreaded dust seems to have gone away! So far my only regret is that I didn’t do it sooner!”

“I have the Cool Carbon brake pads on a 525i, on my son’s E30 325is and have also installed them on an E46 M3. They work great on all of these. They have very good initial bite and feel to be 25–30% higher friction than OE. They also work extremely well both cold and hot. Many complain that OE pads on track events start to fade after 5 or 6 laps, but no complaints re: Cool Carbons. Also very little dust and no noise!… I don’t know if you could out-drive these pads with slicks, but I have not been able to on street tires and have not experienced any fade. They actually feel stronger as they heat up.”

“Compared to the stock pads that came on my car, Cool Carbon produces much less dust… and is easier and more comfortable to modulate. They also resist fade much better, in mountains for example. [Competitive brand] is halfway in between. I prefer Cool Carbon.”

“Long story short, I am very, very happy with the Cool Carbon brake pads. I have about 2,500 miles on them. It took a day or two to get used to the new feel, but now I can’t imagine going back to stock pads… I have much better control going into and out of corners. A must for achieving the highest possible entrance and exit speed and grip through turns. There has been ZERO problems, no shuddering at high speeds, absolutely NO noise and dust is low. I would recommend them for anyone.”

To shop for Cool Carbon pads for your BMW or MINI, click the image below:

Click the image below for the BavAuto full DIY video on replacing BMW and MINI brake pads and rotors:

Bavarian Autosport Show and Shine 2014 – BavAuto

Oct 11 14

After a few years in a row of cold, wet weather – and a very soggy Saturday – a collective sigh of relief emanated from BMW and MINI enthusiasts around the northeast… SHOW & SHINE WOULD BE SUNNY AND WARM! That probably explains why, when the lot opened (early) at 7:45am, there was a line of a couple hundred BMWs and MINIs snaking its way north along Constitution Ave. and onto Banfield Rd., and another line heading south on Constitution towards Route 1.

Click HERE for “waiting in line” video

However, the BavAuto crew did their usual outstanding job and had the lot filled with more than 300 cars – all neatly parked – by 9:40. The free coffee and donuts ran out soon after.

Click HERE for overhead “fly-by” video

Then at 10:00, the first raffle drawing was held. Once again, Bavarian Autosport and its generous vendor partners donated tens of thousands of dollars worth of gear for both the free raffle (anyone in attendance could enter) and the charity raffle (tickets were sold to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure).

There were 80 prizes in the free raffle, ranging from $10 cans of Noise Free, to $100 metric wrench sets, to $175 jars of Zymöl Concours wax. In the charity raffle, instead of the usual 20 regular prizes, there were 40 (in honor of our 40th anniversary) plus a brand new Grand Prize – a one-week, trip for two to Munich, Germany, including airfare, hotel, rental car and $1,000 spending money. The 40 regular prizes ranged in value from $200 Smith Optics sunglasses, to a $900 set of Beyern Spartan wheels, to a $1600 KW Variant 1 coil-over kit, while the Grand Prize is valued at more than $4,000.

Apparently doubling the number or prizes had a direct correlation to ticket sales: in 2013 we raised just over $11,000 for the Komen fund, while this year we doubled that, raising $23,600. (A complete list of prizes and winners can be found at the end of this post.)

As at previous Show & Shine events, Bavarian Autosport’s owners and staff prepared a massive, free barbecue lunch for anyone in attendance. In less than one hour they cooked and served 730 hamburgers, 280 bratwurst and 350 hot dogs… not to mention three kegs of Smuttynose beer (also free, but only for folks 21 and older).

Click HERE for food service photo gallery

On the DIY front, Bavarian Otto and Andy Douglass demonstrated how to install a few audio upgrades on late-model BMWs and MINIs (using a 2007 335i as the example), including speakers, subwoofers and smartphone/iPod interfaces.


Meanwhile, there were 20+ companies represented under the vendor tent, including:
- Bentley Publishers
- Cool Carbon brake pads (all the way from AZ!)
- Continental Rubber Products
- Behr radiators
- Mann-Filter
- Sachs shocks
- Lemförder chassis parts
- ZF automatic transmission fluids & filters
- Hella
- KONI shocks
- UUC Motorwerks
- Liqui Moly
- Meyle
- P21S
- Mahle
- PIAA
- D-Force Wheels
- ISC Suspensions
- Stealth
- Rockford-Fosgate
- Nokian Tyre

But of course, the main reason people come to Show & Shine is to look at all the beautiful Bimmers and magnificent MINIs. And they were not disappointed – the good weather enticed several exotic BMWs out of their garages, including a Z1, 1600 coupe, 3.0cs, and a bevy of 2002s. But the younger generation of BMWs was equally represented, including new M5s, M6s, X1s, 4 series, i3 and more. (You can see all the cars in our photo gallery – link below.)

Click HERE for Show & Shine 2014 photo gallery #1

Click HERE for Show & Shine 2014 photo gallery #2

Once the show was over, just before the Grand Prize was drawn, a 40th birthday cake was presented to the company owners and the crowd joined Bavarian Otto in singing “Happy Birthday” them. They turned right around and thanked the crowd for making it all possible. Here’s to another 40!

 Komen Charity Raffle Prizes & Winners:

1. Cool Carbon S/T/ brake pads, front & rear – John Pehl, Massachusetts

2. Remus $400 gift certificate – Connie M., Massachusetts

3. Set of four Meyle Platinum brake rotors – Richard F., Illinois

4. Powerflex urethane bushings, three sets – Eric E., Massachusetts

5. SONAX detailing gift sets – Anonymous

6. BlueDriver code reade & Bentley manual – Phillip C., Connecticut

7. Zymöl Concours wax & WeatherTech license plate frame – James N. Jr., Mississippi

8. Love The Drive convertible windscreen – Harriet J., New York

9. Angel Eyes upgrade kit & Bentley repair manual – Stan F., California

10. Bavarian Autosport high-performance ignition wires – Chris W., Massachusetts

11. Smith Optics $200 gift certificate – Micha F., Ontario

12. Bavarian Autosport aluminum stress bar – Jennifer G., Rhode Island

13. Billy Boat Performance Exhaust $200 gift certificate – Suzanne C., New Hampshire

14. Zymöl Concours wax & WeatherTech license plate frame – James C., Illinois

15. Bavarian Autosport aluminum stress bar – Eric N., North Carolina

16. Brembo front & rear brake rotors and pads – Mark W., Georgia

17. Set of four Meyle Platinum brake rotors – Darryl N., North Carolina

18. Set of four KONI shocks – Anonymous

19. Burger Motorsports JB Plus – Jared M., Massachusetts

20. Sprint Booster – Karl S., Florida

21. Burger Motorsports Juice Box Plus – Scott S., New York

22. Set of four 17” Beyern Spartan wheels – Matthew S., Florida

23. Set of four Nokian Nordman snow tires – Joseph D., Louisiana

24.  PitStop Furniture Grand Prix office chair – Anthony K., Massachusetts

25. Angel Eyes upgrade kit & Bentley repair manual – Jordan K., New Hampshire

26. Bavarian Autosport high-performance ignition wires – Doug H., South Dakota

27. $500 gift card courtesy of BMW of Stratham – Tom D., New York

28. Rockford-Fosgate “Punch” 300-watt subwoofer – Dustin. R, California

29. Zymöl Concours wax & WeatherTech license plate frame – John M., California

30. KW Variant 1 coil-over kit – Matthew D., Massachusetts

31. SPEC clutch kit – Quinn K., Connecticut

32. Bavarian Autosport aluminum stress bar – Don H., Tennessee

33. Bavarian Autosport aluminum stress bar – Michael P., Pennsylvania

34. UUC Motorwerks EVO3 short shift kit – Adam N., British Columbia

35. Bavarian Autosport aluminum stress bar – Georgia B., Washington

36. Bavarian Autosport pre-painted rear wing – Virginia Z., Illinois

37. Bavarian Autosport pre-painted rear wing – Jeff D., New Hampshire

38. Billy Boat Performance Exhaust $200 gift certificate – Mike C., Massachusetts

39. Zymöl Concours wax & WeatherTech license plate frame – Anonymous

40. PIAA bulbs and wipers & Touring Class floor mat set – Mark G., Massachusetts

Grand Prize: Kevin V. A., New Hampshire