How to Replace the Fuel Filter on a 2002 BMW 325i

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The 2002 BMW 325i is part of the E46 generation of 3 Series. This lineup is one of the most popular and well known in the company’s history. In order to ensure that the fuel system in the 325i remains in good shape and continues to function properly, the fuel filter should be replaced about every 30,000 miles, depending on how the car is used. This is a straightforward replacement that can be done with a minimal amount of tools and time.

Things You'll Need

  • Floor jack and jack stand or ramps
  • Socket set and ratchet
  • Screwdriver
  • Rags
  • Locking pliers (x2)
  • New fuel filter
  • Park the car in a well-ventilated area. Open the glovebox door and locate the #54 fuse, which is the fuse for the fuel pump. Turn the car over until it does not start to ensure that as much fuel as possible is removed from the fuel lines.

  • Raise the driver’s side of the car with a floor jack and support it on a jack stand or alternatively drive the car up onto a pair of ramps to lift it. Place a block behind the rear wheel to keep the car from rolling and set the emergency brake. Place it in gear or in park.

  • Remove the fuel filter protective shield in front of the gas tank by unbolting the 8 mm bolts with a socket and ratchet. Set the shield aside. You should be able to see the fuel filter where it is held in place with a bracket. Remove the filter from the bracket with a 10 mm socket.

  • Place a pair of locking pliers on the fuel lines that come out of either end of the fuel filter to prevent gas from coming out when they are removed from the filter. Use a rag between the jaws of the pliers to prevent damage to the fuel line. Loosen the hose clamps that hold the fuel lines on with a screwdriver or a socket.

  • Pull the fuel lines off of the fuel filter. You may need to wedge a flat-head screwdriver between the line and the filter and twist the filter to remove the lines. Be ready to clean up spilled fuel with a rag. Dispose of the filter.

  • Install the new filter in the reverse of removal, ensuring that the arrow on the fuel filter points toward the front of the car. Tighten the fuel lines and install the filter into the bracket. Lower the vehicle off of the jack or the ramps. Reinstall the fuel pump fuse. Turn the ignition on and off a couple of times without starting the motor, then turn it to the start position and start the motor.

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  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
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