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      10-06-2017, 06:38 PM   #1
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Dreaded N52 Tick - Question

So today starting my car on the way from my office just to hear ... tick tick tick.
The tick goes away shortly thereafter, but I know what that means. I thought I was in the clear - drive about 1k miles a month, about (2) 20-30 minute commutes per week at highway speeds ~ 85mph, plus around town my average speed is about 45-50mph. Although it is an automatic - so my RPM's are typically 2k and below unless on the highway. I guess having a BMW built on 7/7/07 only gets you so much luck.

With all of that ... short of having the lifters and head replaced - is there anything I can do to keep the tick from becoming worse? Would driving around town in a combination of Sport & Manual modes help? (keeping the RPM's above 2k at all times)

I've read that some owners were able to remedy their tick after some time ... not sure if that is correct ... just as I read that this was a problem that arose during the "break-in" stage of the engine (it now has 40k miles so that theory isn't very accurate).


... I understand the "tick" is mostly an annoyance and shouldn't damage the engine. I plan to keep the car for a while so as long as it's not too loud and dissipates when warmed up ... I'm okay (I don't need clients thinking I they're riding in a POS). However I may look into purchasing an aftermarket insurance policy after-all ... the job is crazy expensive! - BOLLOCKS!

... just in case anyone asks ... the oil was changed 4k miles ago. Mobil 1. Which the previous owners used too (from a BMW specialist indy shop) It's been running Mobil 1 for at least 14k of its 40k miles. All the BMW indy shops in my area all use Mobil 1.

Any insight will be helpful. Thanks!
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      10-06-2017, 08:59 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N52UNED View Post
So today starting my car on the way from my office just to hear ... tick tick tick.
The tick goes away shortly thereafter, but I know what that means. I thought I was in the clear - drive about 1k miles a month, about (2) 20-30 minute commutes per week at highway speeds ~ 85mph, plus around town my average speed is about 45-50mph. Although it is an automatic - so my RPM's are typically 2k and below unless on the highway. I guess having a BMW built on 7/7/07 only gets you so much luck.

With all of that ... short of having the lifters and head replaced - is there anything I can do to keep the tick from becoming worse? Would driving around town in a combination of Sport & Manual modes help? (keeping the RPM's above 2k at all times)

I've read that some owners were able to remedy their tick after some time ... not sure if that is correct ... just as I read that this was a problem that arose during the "break-in" stage of the engine (it now has 40k miles so that theory isn't very accurate).


... I understand the "tick" is mostly an annoyance and shouldn't damage the engine. I plan to keep the car for a while so as long as it's not too loud and dissipates when warmed up ... I'm okay (I don't need clients thinking I they're riding in a POS). However I may look into purchasing an aftermarket insurance policy after-all ... the job is crazy expensive! - BOLLOCKS!

... just in case anyone asks ... the oil was changed 4k miles ago. Mobil 1. Which the previous owners used too (from a BMW specialist indy shop) It's been running Mobil 1 for at least 14k of its 40k miles. All the BMW indy shops in my area all use Mobil 1.

Any insight will be helpful. Thanks!
How often do you visit 5k+ rpm?
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      10-06-2017, 10:51 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Smooth 330i View Post
How often do you visit 5k+ rpm?
Every day if i can help it.


6mt FTW.
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      10-07-2017, 12:37 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Smooth 330i View Post
How often do you visit 5k+ rpm?
With it being an auto - daily city driver ... more like here or there. More when I'm on an on-ramp or passing a pack of cars on the highway. Definitely nothing I would state as regularly or much less daily. Perhaps a couple times a week, but short lived.

Last edited by N52UNED; 10-07-2017 at 12:42 AM.
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      10-07-2017, 07:23 AM   #5
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When was the last oil change? I noticed the valve tick goes away after changing the oil and when coming up on the CBS is when I would notice the tick during engine warm-up.
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      10-07-2017, 10:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Eagle1oh7 View Post
When was the last oil change? I noticed the valve tick goes away after changing the oil and when coming up on the CBS is when I would notice the tick during engine warm-up.
About 4K miles ago. Mobil 1
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      10-07-2017, 10:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N52UNED View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smooth 330i View Post
How often do you visit 5k+ rpm?
With it being an auto - daily city driver ... more like here or there. More when I'm on an on-ramp or passing a pack of cars on the highway. Definitely nothing I would state as regularly or much less daily. Perhaps a couple times a week, but short lived.
Try to make it a regular event. These engines are built to rev. Put it in manual mode and rev it 3-6k up and down
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      10-07-2017, 11:11 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Smooth 330i View Post
Try to make it a regular event. These engines are built to rev. Put it in manual mode and rev it 3-6k up and down
I can do that ... there's a couple highway and interstate options I can take when getting around town where it can be wound out a bit without too much worry about seeing blue lights in my rear view.

Agreed these engines do like the higher RPM's ... it kinda makes me wonder if a 6 speed is really the best gearing for the auto trans.

... I'm hoping that since it just started to "tick" I can at least keep the issue from setting-in; if that's possible. At least not exacerbate the issue.
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      10-07-2017, 01:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle1oh7 View Post
When was the last oil change? I noticed the valve tick goes away after changing the oil and when coming up on the CBS is when I would notice the tick during engine warm-up.
What he said. Change your oil.

I changed to T6 Rotella and haven't had a tick since... although I change my oil annually because I don't drive my car enough(under 6000km/year).

PS I also had my lifters changed by the dealer, but considering how much that dealer bs'd me I would not be surprised if it was not done(the ticking returned and remained until I changed oil type).
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      10-07-2017, 01:56 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N52UNED View Post
I can do that ... there's a couple highway and interstate options I can take when getting around town where it can be wound out a bit without too much worry about seeing blue lights in my rear view.

Agreed these engines do like the higher RPM's ... it kinda makes me wonder if a 6 speed is really the best gearing for the auto trans.

... I'm hoping that since it just started to "tick" I can at least keep the issue from setting-in; if that's possible. At least not exacerbate the issue.
Just put it in Sport mode every now and then. That should move the shift points high enough to keep the lifter happy.

I've had noisy lifters for over 150,000 miles, a little worse in cold weather.

I'll break the 200,000 mile barrier this month.
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      10-07-2017, 03:01 PM   #11
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if its a continuous ticking noise and not intermittent one, then you are safe.
lifter/injector ticks are completely normal. My E90 has 150k miles on it, and had ticking noises since day one. Still running strong.
My M3 also has plenty of ticking noise. After owning 4 different BMWs from different generations, it is safe to say, ticking noises are completely normal. Also some oils make more noise than others too!
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      10-07-2017, 09:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon@ View Post
if its a continuous ticking noise and not intermittent one, then you are safe.
lifter/injector ticks are completely normal. My E90 has 150k miles on it, and had ticking noises since day one. Still running strong.
My M3 also has plenty of ticking noise. After owning 4 different BMWs from different generations, it is safe to say, ticking noises are completely normal. Also some oils make more noise than others too!
Same here. I?ve had tick since 50k, and the car is now at 150k and is running better than ever. I always notice it most when the car is 1qt low on oil and/or cold temps when running 5w-30 oil (I use Castrol Edge (full synthetic) 5w-30 in the summer). I use 5w-20 in the fall/winter with the lower temps, and it always reduces the tick since the oil isn?t as thick.
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      10-08-2017, 01:12 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by WOT Bimmer View Post
Same here. I?ve had tick since 50k, and the car is now at 150k and is running better than ever. I always notice it most when the car is 1qt low on oil and/or cold temps when running 5w-30 oil (I use Castrol Edge (full synthetic) 5w-30 in the summer). I use 5w-20 in the fall/winter with the lower temps, and it always reduces the tick since the oil isn?t as thick.
thicker the oil, yes on start-up you are going to notice more ticking than usual. the ticking comes from when the oil is too thick and not warmed up enough to reach the top of the engine. after driving the car for a bit and when the engine is warmed up, the ticking is subdued but still evident depending on ambient temps.
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      10-08-2017, 04:35 AM   #14
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The ticking starts on my N52B25 if I have been driving too long like a grandma (which I do usually) or too short trips

It's a good reminder to visit the red line more often The type of oil didnt have any effect on this. Also my long term average speed in the trip computer is 25mph...
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      10-08-2017, 08:47 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avocet View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eagle1oh7 View Post
When was the last oil change? I noticed the valve tick goes away after changing the oil and when coming up on the CBS is when I would notice the tick during engine warm-up.
What he said. Change your oil.

I changed to T6 Rotella and haven't had a tick since... although I change my oil annually because I don't drive my car enough(under 6000km/year).

PS I also had my lifters changed by the dealer, but considering how much that dealer bs'd me I would not be surprised if it was not done(the ticking returned and remained until I changed oil type).
Isn?t that oil for a Diesel engine?
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      10-08-2017, 12:33 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Eagle1oh7 View Post
Isn?t that oil for a Diesel engine?
Yeah it is. I know people using it on their M3's but honestly I don't recommend Diesel engine oil because they contain detergents to clean up the deposits in the engine that are not present in a petrol engine. Maybe short term, there's no harm but in the long term who knows.
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      10-08-2017, 02:16 PM   #17
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Why would anyone want to run a non approved oil in these motors?

There is a lot of evidence that the approved oil types work very well and while other oils might not mess with the metal parts in the engine, what about the seals? God knows we have enough leaks with these motors why take the risk?
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      10-08-2017, 05:44 PM   #18
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Isn?t that oil for a Diesel engine?
Yup ... I use it in my F-350 7.3 TD. Great oil.
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      10-08-2017, 05:56 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon@ View Post
if its a continuous ticking noise and not intermittent one, then you are safe.
lifter/injector ticks are completely normal. My E90 has 150k miles on it, and had ticking noises since day one. Still running strong.
My M3 also has plenty of ticking noise. After owning 4 different BMWs from different generations, it is safe to say, ticking noises are completely normal. Also some oils make more noise than others too!
It's not the typical BMW engine lifter sounds ... it's a prevalent tick (if you're referring the the first).

Actually the tick seemed to have dissipated (for the moment ... a handful of starts - including 2 cold starts). Over the past couple days I've commuted around in Sport ... also wound it out a few times including a (2) 30 minute 90-100 mph runs; where I took it up to 6k and down - then would bring it to ~ 4-5k for a few mile here and there.

I'll make sure to make this a regular thing. Good thing the Mrs doesn't mind 100+ mph here and there ... and is good with me winding it out a bit.




... Would it behoove me to go ahead and change the oil, even though it only has 4k mile on it?


BTW ... thanks for everyone's input.
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      10-08-2017, 06:44 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N52UNED View Post
It's not the typical BMW engine lifter sounds ... it's a prevalent tick (if you're referring the the first).

Actually the tick seemed to have dissipated (for the moment ... a handful of starts - including 2 cold starts). Over the past couple days I've commuted around in Sport ... also wound it out a few times including a (2) 30 minute 90-100 mph runs; where I took it up to 6k and down - then would bring it to ~ 4-5k for a few mile here and there.

I'll make sure to make this a regular thing. Good thing the Mrs doesn't mind 100+ mph here and there ... and is good with me winding it out a bit.




... Would it behoove me to go ahead and change the oil, even though it only has 4k mile on it?


BTW ... thanks for everyone's input.
I'd change my oil every 5k kilometers regardless its synthetic or not.
I feel like oils don't have nearly the same/enough protection after 4-5K miles.
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      10-08-2017, 11:23 PM   #21
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What do 'feels' have to do with oil longevity?

We have more than one member here with 300k+ on their engines who folllowed the CBS religiously, and many more over 200k.
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      10-09-2017, 12:11 PM   #22
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What do 'feels' have to do with oil longevity?

We have more than one member here with 300k+ on their engines who folllowed the CBS religiously, and many more over 200k.
Sure, go ahead and stick to the CBS. In Canada its nearly every 11k miles per interval. You should be changing your oil more frequently depending on the style of driving you do and the climates you live in. Try to do the recommended CBS with a M3, lets see how long your engine lasts before the rod bearings blow up.
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