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      04-19-2009, 06:26 PM   #1
ansch
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320i engine rattle

Hi,

My 320i has this rattle noise on idle. Just want to check with other 320i owners if you have the same noise. It sounds like a noisy valve tappet noise and almost sounds like a diesel. Is this normal for the 320i? The car still has warranty till end of the year so if it's something out of the ordinary I'd get bmw to get it checked out.

Thanks
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      04-20-2009, 01:35 AM   #2
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Get it checked out at idle ours is smooth as
I can even say it sounds great under acceleration (shame it doesn't go as good as it sounds)
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      04-20-2009, 02:03 AM   #3
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they do sound great for a 4 cyl.. just a shame about the tapping noise but if it can be fixed then yay! I've booked it for next week so will see what happens.. thanks for confirming.
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      04-20-2009, 09:40 AM   #4
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Get it looked at. This problem affects many BMW engines, from 4 to 6 to 8 cylinders. You can see many posts on youtube about the matter.

My car has the problem. It is to do with the lifters and vannos. The problem must be reasonably common, because even the service receptionist asked if it was a lifter problem when I first started describing the problem to her.

The service people listened to my engine and took some stats from the ECU. There is a BMW Master Mechanic who performs assessments and then decides what action to take (re-doing the head which is apparently what is required according to other posts on this site is a $7-9k proposition). I was told that even though my car is out of warranty, BMW may consider doing the work for free or at a reduced cost, depending on how bad they assess the condition to be.

The service guy said it wouldn't affect the performance or longevity of the engine, but it was a "cosmetic issue". I don't say that I agree with this, some metal in there is clunking against some other metal, and this can't be good for engine wear.

Luckily my problem is only when the car is sitting undriven for a couple of days (now seriously, when does a BMW sit undriven for a long time ). Anyway, mine goes away after the engine warms, after some gently driving for 5 min. My theory is that when resting for a prolonged period, there is problem with BMW's system of getting oil to the top of the engine to lubricate it properly.

Get it checked out as soon as possible, and don't let them pull the wool over your eyes.
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      04-20-2009, 11:49 AM   #5
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mine sounds like a tractor. always has. i thought it was normal?
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      04-20-2009, 05:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieA View Post
Get it looked at. This problem affects many BMW engines, from 4 to 6 to 8 cylinders. You can see many posts on youtube about the matter.

My car has the problem. It is to do with the lifters and vannos. The problem must be reasonably common, because even the service receptionist asked if it was a lifter problem when I first started describing the problem to her.

The service people listened to my engine and took some stats from the ECU. There is a BMW Master Mechanic who performs assessments and then decides what action to take (re-doing the head which is apparently what is required according to other posts on this site is a $7-9k proposition). I was told that even though my car is out of warranty, BMW may consider doing the work for free or at a reduced cost, depending on how bad they assess the condition to be.

The service guy said it wouldn't affect the performance or longevity of the engine, but it was a "cosmetic issue". I don't say that I agree with this, some metal in there is clunking against some other metal, and this can't be good for engine wear.

Luckily my problem is only when the car is sitting undriven for a couple of days (now seriously, when does a BMW sit undriven for a long time ). Anyway, mine goes away after the engine warms, after some gently driving for 5 min. My theory is that when resting for a prolonged period, there is problem with BMW's system of getting oil to the top of the engine to lubricate it properly.

Get it checked out as soon as possible, and don't let them pull the wool over your eyes.
Thanks.. it is booked in next monday so will definitely make sure they do something about it. It sounds like this all the time for me.. over half and hour drive to work and at the carpark entrance... ticka.. ticka.. ticka.. ticka.. ticka.. bit embarrassing to say the least and even if there're no real damage done, a car like this should not sound like a tractor.
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      04-22-2009, 08:46 AM   #7
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No, and the only reason people should turn around and stare at your car is because of its looks, or for the sweet purr of the engine, not because they think a Massey Ferguson is about to mow them down.
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      04-27-2009, 02:01 AM   #8
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well, car went in today and they "could not fault at time of testing". According to the reception guy, they have issues with the 6 cyl engines but never with the 4cyl. All they did was the bleeding procedure. As I went to collect the car, I started it and the same ticking noise. One of the tech guy walked past and I asked him if he thinks that it's normal. He said it maybe on the loud side but the 320i does have a ticking sound to them because of the valvetronic setup. He again confirmed that they have more issues with the 6's and not with the 4's. So not sure what to make of it now. The lady SA at the office said to keep listening to it and if it gets louder bring it back (I have to go back to get the driver sun visor replaced when it arrives from germany. Dead light switch) Thing is, walking past a couple of other 320i's and they sound like that too. So looks like I should put a c in front of the i to make it look like a 'd'
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      04-27-2009, 06:27 AM   #9
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in regard to the ticking noise, does it seem more obvious during a cold startup?
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      04-27-2009, 10:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ansch View Post
well, car went in today and they "could not fault at time of testing". According to the reception guy, they have issues with the 6 cyl engines but never with the 4cyl. All they did was the bleeding procedure. As I went to collect the car, I started it and the same ticking noise. One of the tech guy walked past and I asked him if he thinks that it's normal. He said it maybe on the loud side but the 320i does have a ticking sound to them because of the valvetronic setup. He again confirmed that they have more issues with the 6's and not with the 4's. So not sure what to make of it now. The lady SA at the office said to keep listening to it and if it gets louder bring it back (I have to go back to get the driver sun visor replaced when it arrives from germany. Dead light switch) Thing is, walking past a couple of other 320i's and they sound like that too. So looks like I should put a c in front of the i to make it look like a 'd'
If you go on youtube you will see plenty of E46 318s with the problem.
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      04-27-2009, 05:29 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ninja333 View Post
in regard to the ticking noise, does it seem more obvious during a cold startup?
The ticking noise is actually not that noticeable at cold start. But becomes really loud when the car has been driven for a while. eg. it would sound ok as I leave home in the morning and by the time I pull into the carpark at work, it would be ticking like mad. So it sounds like a different issue to the 6cyl where the rattle happens at cold start. But none the less annoying.

I will take it back when I get the sun visor fixed and this time I will keep the car running when I get there and get the reception guy to have a listen.
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      04-29-2009, 06:04 PM   #12
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Or turn the Stereo up and trade it before the end of warrenty
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      04-30-2009, 06:23 AM   #13
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Not sure if it is related. I have a diesel, and had engine rattle issue which sound very similar to your case. It turned out to be the plastic engine cover, the SA took out the enginer cover and reinstalled it. Took less than 5 minutes.
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      04-30-2009, 08:33 AM   #14
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Does the 320i have an engine cover?

I have seen this engine cover issue with a Mercedes Diesel, the cover came a little loose and the diesel rattle was more pronounced, when it was put back on properly, the engine sounded much better.
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      04-30-2009, 05:51 PM   #15
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I will check again this weekend, but doesn't seem to be any cover lose in the engine bay. And this rattle is quite when cold and louder when the engine is hot.
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      05-01-2009, 04:59 PM   #16
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My enginer cover was not loose, it was just incorrectly installed. The diesel engine cover is heavily padded, unlike the petrol one. One of the edges was knocking at the engine extension. The symtom that I had was when I revved up the engine, the rattle get louder.
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      06-03-2009, 10:22 AM   #17
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N-series motors have a pump that pumps air into exhaust manifold when idling. This is for emission control. That keeps a knocking like sound that sometimes may appear like "tractor" or diesel sound.
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      02-14-2013, 06:56 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoPe View Post
N-series motors have a pump that pumps air into exhaust manifold when idling. This is for emission control. That keeps a knocking like sound that sometimes may appear like "tractor" or diesel sound.

Hello, sorry for bumping this old thread, but my 2008 320i also makes a ticking sound at idle. It is not apparent in the cabin, but from outside it cam be heard. It is coming from the right side of the engine, in the throttle assembly I think, right next to the air filter. I am really worried...

I found this video on youtube, mine sounds exactly as in the film.


Is this normal? (I have the N43 engine)

Last edited by amilo123; 02-14-2013 at 07:12 PM.
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      02-15-2013, 06:04 AM   #19
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Mine has always sounded a little bit like a diesel on idle. Been to three dealerships who all said sound was normal. Remove the bottom of your airbox and place a K&N air filter on it and when it revs you won't care about the tapping.
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      02-15-2013, 01:44 PM   #20
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Many BMW owners I think are car-hypocondriacs. Always think something's wrong with the car. Always bugging the bejesus out of dealerships.


it seems that NORMAL for this car is the diesel knocking sound. So you guys are all may be too paranoid - if dealer said it's ok, let it be. Stop looking for trouble with it.

Just go on highway, red line it few times, drive it hard. See what happens. i remember my old 320d had some knocking, then 325i has some knocking. sold cars, later asked new buyers how are cars - all perfect, all driving. So.... may be it's in your head. Fk this youtube, the more you watch of this car trouble the more paranoid you'll get. just drive it. if it breaks down - you will know. it may be more expensive to take it all apart and finding nothing's wrong.
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      02-15-2013, 10:37 PM   #21
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Many BMW owners I think are car-hypocondriacs. Always think something's wrong with the car. Always bugging the bejesus out of dealerships.


it seems that NORMAL for this car is the diesel knocking sound. So you guys are all may be too paranoid - if dealer said it's ok, let it be. Stop looking for trouble with it.

Just go on highway, red line it few times, drive it hard. See what happens. i remember my old 320d had some knocking, then 325i has some knocking. sold cars, later asked new buyers how are cars - all perfect, all driving. So.... may be it's in your head. Fk this youtube, the more you watch of this car trouble the more paranoid you'll get. just drive it. if it breaks down - you will know. it may be more expensive to take it all apart and finding nothing's wrong.
HEHE you do have a point, i always have something wrong with my car and then when i dont i think i make myself find another thing
but on the other hand it has had alot of probs, but i see your point:
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      02-16-2013, 07:10 PM   #22
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My 320i sounds like a diesel at idle and all the other ones I have listened to sound the same. Worried me at first but now convinced it is normal. Just doesn't sound like a BMW should. Believe it has to do with the valvetronics setup, quietens down with a few more revs and worse when the engine is warm.
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