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      02-09-2017, 09:57 AM   #1
AzFlyZone
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low rpm whine 2011 E93 328I

I just purchased a 2011 328i E93 with 60,000 miles on it. Car is in great shape. However, I have noticed a whine at around 1000-1500 rpm that changes with RPM. Itís noticeable both in park, while slightly revving the motor and in drive as I pull away from a stop. No difference with A/C on or off. Very slight difference as I move the steering wheel back and forth. Canít hear it much past about 1800-2000 rpm. Itís not a real high pitched whine or squeal. Itís seems to get slightly better as the car warms up, but not completely gone. I didnít notice it on the test drive, but I do now and want to get it quiet.

Any ideas? Iím kind of guessing itís the P/S pump, but hoping itís just an idler pulley or something more simple?

Here is my plan for the weekend:

1) Remove drive belt and start the Engine for less than 30 seconds, see if noise is still present.
2) Spin each pulley and listen for any abnormal noises or roughness.

Anything else I should check for?

Seems strange to me that it would have this type of noise for relatively low miles.

Also, is it OK to start the car with belt off, air box removed and MAF disconnected? I donít want to set any codes.

Thanks in advance for any input!
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      02-09-2017, 10:40 PM   #2
AzFlyZone
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I see nobody replied to my questions, but I thought I would post an update. I had a minute tonight to remove the drive belt and start the engine. There was no noise. After checking/spinning all the pulley's I found the idler pulley to be coarse sounding and sounds like dry bearings. So I'm sure that's the culprit.

I'm think I'm going to order the complete set including a new belt, idler pulley & tensioner pulley. Not sure where to buy yet.

Dale - AZ
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      02-09-2017, 11:20 PM   #3
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Check parts.com using part numbers from realoem.com

Although, the local dealer may come close if you have a discount through your BMW CCA membership
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      02-10-2017, 09:32 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GATORB8 View Post
Check parts.com using part numbers from realoem.com

Although, the local dealer may come close if you have a discount through your BMW CCA membership
Thank you GATORB8!
I will look into that.
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      02-19-2017, 11:15 AM   #5
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Well another update on this noise. I replaced my belt, idler pulley (old one was noisy when spun by hand) along with the the tensioner.

After starting the car, the low RPM whine noise was 50% better, but not gone like it is when I start it with no belt.

After listening more, I still can't tell if its from the Power Steering pump or possibly the A/C compressor. If I remove the belt again and try turning the PS Pump pulley by hand I really can't hear anything on it, but its hard to spin it much due to the resistance of the pump. I think it feels fine.

When I spine the A/C compressor pulley I can hear some noise (kind of a shhhh, shhhh sound). So, while I hear something on this pulley, I don't know if its a problem or a normal sound of the clutch on the A/C pulley? Has anyone tried spinning their A/C pulley without the belt on? Did you get any sound at all?

Is it possible to replace just the pulley or bearing on the A/C compressor without replacing the whole thing on an E90 (N52 engine)?

I hate to just throw expensive parts on it, but I would like the noise gone. Its not very loud, but its still there. If it was still there without the belt I would just consider it normal, but the fact it goes away completely without the belt makes me wonder.

Thanks for any help or advice.

Dale - AZ
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      02-19-2017, 11:30 AM   #6
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Is the noise impacted by the engagement of the A/C Compressor? If it's the compressor pulley bearing, it should go away when the compressor clutch is engaged. Not that it's not available from a 3rd party, but realoem seems to show the compressor (at least the one for the N54) as a single part.
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      02-19-2017, 12:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GATORB8 View Post
Is the noise impacted by the engagement of the A/C Compressor? If it's the compressor pulley bearing, it should go away when the compressor clutch is engaged. Not that it's not available from a 3rd party, but realoem seems to show the compressor (at least the one for the N54) as a single part.
Thank for the reply GATORB8,
With the belt on and engine running the noise does not change at all with A/C button on or off. A/C works and blows cold. So, does that mean it's probably not the compressor pulley bearing?
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      02-19-2017, 02:55 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzFlyZone View Post
Thank for the reply GATORB8,
With the belt on and engine running the noise does not change at all with A/C button on or off. A/C works and blows cold. So, does that mean it's probably not the compressor pulley bearing?
So, something new I noticed. I was just out in the garage looking for the noise again and I noticed my A/C clutch is always engaged? I can turn the AC button off, and turn the heater on and the clutch remains engaged. Nothing I can do will disengage the clutch. Do they always run on a 2011 E93 N52 engine?
It is raining here today so humidity is high

Dale - AZ
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      02-19-2017, 07:41 PM   #9
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Hmm, not sure if there's a humidity sensor. You could try pulling the connector/fuse, but you'll want a scanner to reset the codes.
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      02-19-2017, 08:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GATORB8 View Post
Hmm, not sure if there's a humidity sensor. You could try pulling the connector/fuse, but you'll want a scanner to reset the codes.
Good idea, I didn't think of that. I may give that a try later. I do have a cheap "ACTRON" scanner that I use on my other cars. I assume it will work with BMW?

So I played with the A/C today (car is new to me)... It seems to work fine. If I set the temp to lowest number with fan on 2 or 3 and the A/C button off, it basically blows ambient temp. Leaving everything the same and hit the A/C button on and it blows cold. I still can't hear the compressor kick on or see any difference in the front of the clutch/pulley, but it appears to work correctly.

I installed a shorter drive belt that I had at home that allowed me to bypassed the A/C, then started the car. It still had a similar whine, maybe just a hair less. Now I'm back to thinking it might be the PS pump?? I can hear a very very slight change in the whine when I "load" the steering wheel just a tad by putting in about 5 degrees of steering input. Not enough to turn the wheels much, just load the system. If I turn a lot it doesn't change (unless I push it into the corner).

Thanks,
Dale - AZ
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