I managed to turn a routine brake job into a bit of a minor nightmare by having one of the calliper bracket bolts break off. One bit is stuck inside the calliper bracket. I don't know exactly why it happened -- I think because the lack of space my socket was not on perfectly straight -- but it did and I'll have to deal with it.
After a lot of swearing, I calmed down a little and realised there were two things I need to do:
- Remove the broken screw from the calliper bracket
- Find a replacement bolt
I have a screw extractor kit and I've used it before successfully; I just hope it'll work on a screw as stuck as this one. I haven't tried it yet, since it's nighttime here and I'm not allowed to make much noise.
Finding the replacement bolt, ironically, seems to be the harder problem. While I know which part I need (M10x26.5), I can't seem to find the exact replacement bolt in my country. I could order from Amazon or ebay, but it will take at least two weeks to get to me -- and I don't want to wait that long, so I was thinking of just picking up a very similar bolt from the local DIY store. Is this safe or are these bolts not up to the same standard? I would of course look for a bolt with the same diameter as the original, but perhaps also slightly longer (27, since 26.5 is almost certainly not available) and perhaps use a washer if they don't have the wide head screw (see picture).
The only alternative I can think of is the scrap yard, but these are fairly rare where I live and I'd have to get lucky as well (to find the right car with the brake system still on). In short, even this alternative would be a heck of a lot more trouble than just going to the DIY store and buying a replacement bolt.
The car in question is a BMW E46 320 diesel from 2001 (pre-facelift). The bolt in question is an M10x26.5, see also on RealOEM. I live in Belgium, where getting car parts is quite a bit harder than in the US. :)