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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Mechanical Maintenance: Break-in / Oil & Fluids / Servicing / Warranty > 06 e90 Loud rattling tapping noise, stalls out at idle



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      10-05-2019, 12:54 PM   #1
Julian90090
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06 e90 Loud rattling tapping noise, stalls out at idle

Hey yall long time lurker here but now I need some help! My car is an 06 e90 and it has 136000 miles on it. Now my car usually runs great and I've had very few issues with it, but recently I've noticed some weird idling problems.
When the car is cold it will start but idle very low at like 400 rpm and shake a lot, it also makes a loud rattling noise like marbles in a glass jar. It's not rythmic. Sometimes it will run like this for a few seconds then stall out, but after I restart it it won't stall again. Whenever the rpm drops below 600 or so (ex when I let out the clutch) it starts making that noise as well. The noise gets quieter and less frequent as the car warms up. When the car is warm the idle will jump around a lot between 500 and 1000 rpm. The car runs PERFECT above idle speeds. There are NO CODES.
So what have I tried to fix it?
Cleaned vanos solenoids. Bled lifters with high rpm technique. Replaced water pump and spark plugs. Changed oil. Ran seafoam and chevron cleaner through it. Checked exhaust for looseness (there's none).
Really stumped here!
Attached a YouTube video of the noise, also louder in real life, and it's way louder at start up this is after 5 minutes of running.


Thanks guys

Last edited by Julian90090; 10-05-2019 at 12:58 PM.. Reason: YouTube link
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      10-10-2019, 07:51 AM   #2
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Mine did something like this once briefly some years back, but in my case, was driving as normal, and when I stopped at the lights, all of a sudden the idle went very low which immediately prompted me to blip the throttle, it settled and then the lights when green so had to drive off. Car was fine after that. But I have had other niggling issues that could be related, and I am leaning more and more to suspecting my Vanos solenoids might just be tired. I've also cleaned and swapped mine around numerous times, in the past I've always just soaked them in some petrol, but earlier this year I decided to blast them with some carb cleaner which has a nifty nozzle, so literally blasted the cleaner in all the access holes and then let it stand some more in some that I had put in a small thin container. The car still has the odd hesitation or low rpm stutter, but have to say, seems a bit better, which makes me more confident that it's a Vanos solenoids issue. Also, since yours is the same sort of age, are cars both have the older part number Vanos solenoids which were apparently known to give problems, these were later replaced with a new part number replacement.

But you say your idle jumps around quite a bit, mine has had this random thing where it will be idling, and then all of a sudden the revs pick up to around 1500 rpm for a second or so, then returns to normal idle by itself. But then the throttle feels weird and laggy, and I even had it where the engine will not run past 6000 rpm on WOT when this happens. So I'm also torn into considering the Eccentric Shaft sensor - years ago, a BMW specialist experienced this same anomaly while testing after cleaning my injectors, and a code came up saying Valvetronic Faulty or Slow Plausible (or something along those lines), so he replaced the Valvetronic motor and ultimately this didn't really solve anything, and to add insult to injury, when I collected the car and drove it home, it was doing the same thing! So it could be the sensor, and yet, generally, the engine performs strongly, it's just those brief moments when things feel odd. And, what makes me suspect the Vanos more than anything else, is I typically experience this stumble issue when cruising in a taller gear, then quickly applying throttle to accelerate or overtake a car, that's when I get that annoying stumble or flat spot, if I back off and try it again straight after, then it doesn't do it.

The rattling noise that you are hearing when the idle is super low when releasing the clutch is most likely the dual mass flywheel that is chattering a lot, so probably not a good idea to leave it doing this unnecessarily...
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      10-10-2019, 07:58 AM   #3
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Thanks for all the info Three_thirty_I . My hunch is that it was either the vanos solenoids or the eccentric shaft sensor. So since our issues seem similar, I'll go ahead and yank the valve cover off and look it over. Only thing is my car never stumbles off idle, all the issues seem to go away above 1000 rpm, which is odd.
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      10-10-2019, 08:04 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julian90090 View Post
Thanks for all the info Three_thirty_I . My hunch is that it was either the vanos solenoids or the eccentric shaft sensor. So since our issues seem similar, I'll go ahead and yank the valve cover off and look it over. Only thing is my car never stumbles off idle, all the issues seem to go away above 1000 rpm, which is odd.
It's tricky with our cars, both rarely or never throw error codes, I've been battling with these niggles forever. The thing to consider, the cost and ease of replacing the Vanos solenoids versus the cost and effort required to replace the Eccentric Shaft sensor. For me, it's going to be the quicker and more cost effective Vanos solenoids first, and since they are old and the original problematic parts, consider it as preventative maintenance, but if it persists, then I've literally done everything else except the Eccentric Shaft sensor, so that would be the next logical step.
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