How to Use RealOem To Verify Part Number
A lot of our products here at Garagistic require you to cross-reference BMW part numbers to verify if they will fit your vehicle. This article will walk you through how to check and verify if a part is installed on your vehicle and if not, how to determine what vehicle it was installed on. This will only work on stock unmodified vehicles. If you have an engine swap from another vehicle this will not work.
Using your web browser navigate to realoem.com. You will see the page below. Click enter to open the BMW parts catalog. This catalog directly piggybacks BMWs ETK software and gives accurate part numbers and will also show you past part numbers.
Once you have entered the parts catalog you will see two search bars and scroll boxes. These are used to navigate the catalog.
Serial Number: Here you can enter the full VIN or last 7 digits. Once you click search RealOEM will decode your VIN and automatically show you parts installed on your vehicle. If you need to do a general search continue using the scroll bars.
Part NR APPLICATION SEARCH: This search bar allows you to enter a complete 11 digit part number or a partial part number using the last 7 digits. This can be used to cross-reference a specific part as well as allow you to see if it was installed on other vehicle models. The last 7 feature is generally used when checking a number from an actual part that you found on a car. Usually, you will see a 7 digit number on the part oriented as
Product: This lets you select between BMW car and BMW "motorrad" or motorcycle
Catalog: This lets you select between modern and classic vehicles. most vehicles who's production lines ended before 2000 are now in the classic catalog.
Series: Once you have selected a catalog you can then navigate to your model vehicle and select it. This, however, is a general search and will not guarantee that the parts listed are for your specific vehicle.
Body: Here you can select which body style vehicle you would like to search under. This is convenient when trying to look up parts on vehicles that were not available in your country.
Model: Here you can select either the model of your vehicle or another if you are looking to see what parts came on other cars. This is great if you are at a junkyard trying to see if a part from another car will fit your vehicle.
Market: This selection will determine what parts you see as some parts were not allowed in certain regions. I.E. E28 headlights, European headlights were not DOT legal in the US at the time. For some of these items, you will be able to view the part numbers but they will be unavailable to order for your market.
Transmission: Lets you select which transmission option you would like to see. Sometimes this option may not appear. Don't worry realoem.com will show you both options in this case.
If you enter your VIN these categories will auto-populate. once the option "Browse Parts" appears simply click on it and you will enter the parts catalog for your desired vehicle.
Once you have entered the parts catalog you will see the below image. This shows you an image-based diagram of the different vehicle components. (If you need to look up a part by product group skip to Step 4b) Here you can select a category that you think your part may be located under. I.E. tie rods would be located under the image labeled steering.
This step only applies to those who know the product group of the part they are looking for. If you do and wish to look your parts up this way simply click "switch to text drill down. This is located in the top center of the parts image overview page. This will give you a number followed by the group name instead of an image. The number preceding the name of the product group indicates the first two digits of the part numbers located within that group. I.E. 25 Gearshift. Generally speaking all main components under this category will have part numbers starting with 25. This mostly applies to the main components. Items like hardware, electrical connectors, and gaskets can sometimes have other part numbers. Once you have selected your main group you will be given a list of subgroups. Choose a subgroup to see the part diagrams that are located under each.
Once you have selected a parts diagram you will be shown a breakdown of all the parts available. These are broken down into diagram numbers or No. as seen in each diagram 01 02 03, and so on. Each No. refers to the part labeled in the diagram above. If a number is greyed out this means that it is not installed on the selected vehicle. Below you will find information on what each category in the diagram means.
No.: This links a part description and number to the above image.
Description: This describes what the part is. Sometimes this can be confusing because the German to English translation can cause names to sound unfamiliar. I.E. Typically an American would use the part description of "oil pan" whereas the German translation comes out to be "Oil Sump" in realoem.
Supp.: This is supplemental part information. This can list the resistance of a thermistor. This will be listed in OHMs. A diameter. These will usually be listed in MM. Or a bolt length, thread pitch, and grade.
QTY: This indicates the quantity of each item required for each component. This can sometimes be incorrect so always verify on your own vehicle before ordering. If you see an X listed in quantity this usually means the quantity is not given. It is not a roman numeral 10.
From: This column is used to tell you from when a part was first put in to use. I.E. From, 03/1994 means that part began being installed in vehicles at that time.
Up To: This indicated when a part was ended during a vehicle's production line. I.E Up To 08/2000 means that all vehicles manufactured after that date used a different part. This and the above category are useful when trying to determine the correct part for your vehicle if it is on a production split. This can be a facelift or LCI (life cycle impulse)
Part Number: This is the most important category for most people. This will give you the manufacturers designated part number for the item you are looking for. This will allow you to look it up online to find prices and availability. Clicking on the part number will take you to a description page listing all the above items as well as showing you which other model BMWs that part was installed on. This is also useful when trying to determine if parts from another vehicle will work with yours.
Price: Although the price is listed, it is usually not accurate. It will, however, give you an idea of what that part might cost at the dealer. However, don't be surprised if what realoem says is way off from what the dealer quotes you.
Notes: In this section, you will mostly see the word ENDED. This simply means the part was discontinued and sometimes this means that the part is NLA or no longer available. If you see this usually a quick google search of the part number will let you know if it is still available or if it has been superseded. If you can't find an answer online simply call your nearest BMW parts department and give them the part number. They will be able to see if the part is still available or tell you if it has been replaced.
Once you have found the part you are looking for you can click on it to see which other model BMWs it was also installed on. Simply click on the desired chassis and you will be shown a list of all models on which that specific part was used.
Once you have selected a chassis all the models available will be displayed in a list. Click the desired vehicle model to see the parts diagram for that vehicle. This is great for finding compatible sensors and bolts when trying to repair or rebuild something using parts from a junkyard. It will also help you know where on the vehicle to look for the item you need.
We hope this article has helped give you a basic understanding of how to navigate Realoem.com. We find that it is one of the most useful skills to have when trying to verify parts compatibility or determine if a performance part is applicable to your vehicle.