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  #21  
Old 07-29-2021, 03:11 PM
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First, independent has said what they think isn't the problem, have they done any troubleshooting or said what the problem might be?

If there has been a check for trouble codes that is the first thing I would do. If it is the transmission related there should be trouble codes. There should be an error code for a vacuum leak and engine wouldn't run as it should.

Sometimes the circumstances associated with a problem are misleading and should be set aside, although, the sound usually helps. I agree that it sounds like a bad bearing or the clutch fan but that is a guess. When troubleshooting I don't remove anything unless it is absolutely necessary. I have damaged a perfectly good part, damaged something else in the process, broken a bolt off, made a mistake in reassembly and had to take it apart again etc. After checking for codes, I would start troubleshooting with stethoscope on the intake and then trace the sound to where it is the loudest. I don't think the engine will need to be hot or the sound present. If there is a problem with a bearing you should hear kind of a grinding noise rather than a constant hum. If you don't hear it cold try when engine is at operating temp. If you loosen a tensioner you should be able to tell if bearing is wobbling or bad without completely removing the belt. Check to see if one of the brackets are loose or broken at the same time. I never run the engine without all belts in place. It's too easy to overheat the engine and the block being aluminum that's high risk. Im addition BMW electronics are very sensitive to low voltage.

Secondary air pump comes on with a cold start to warm up cats. Usually turns off around a minute. It's unlikely it comes on after 30 minutes or stops making noise per your circumstances.

If you have always had the AC on when the noise starts turn if off when it happens so the clutch disengages.

I agree it could be the clutch fan since the level of engagement depends on the amount of heat reaching it. It should spin easily when engine is cold and be running consistent with RPMs when engine is at operation temperature.

There are other potential causes. Troubleshoot, troubleshoot, troubleshoot. It's not yet time to buy any parts.
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Last edited by bcredliner; 07-29-2021 at 03:21 PM.
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  #22  
Old 07-30-2021, 03:35 PM
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Question NEW VIDEO of sound / Fifty150hs, Oldskewel, bcredliner, et al.:



Thanks so much for your advise guys! I had a bit of a breakthrough last night after I ran the X5 for five hours straight mostly in traffic on a 101 degree Texas day…. The noise by that point was as bad as I’ve heard it, so empowered by my $4.99 Harbor Freight stethoscope I was finally able to recreate the sound while stationary by weighing down the gas pedal with the tire jack at around 2,000 rpm [link to video at bottom]. The only problem was I’ve never heard what a good vs bad bearing sounds like through a stethoscope. So for the components I could actually get to with the wand pretty much everything sounded like cacophonous ruckus. With the stethoscope off the screeching is so overwhelming (as you can hear in the video) that it sounds like it could be emanating from any part of engine (but almost definitely not the tranny).

I will say that although I was convinced the sound was coming from the intake system somewhere, by either power of your guys’ suggestion or actual observation, I am now almost convinced it’s a bearing as well. You can hear in the video during the parts where I rev the rpms or remove the jack from the gas pedal how the screeching winds up or down in a “circular” motion like it must be coming from something spinning rather than air being sucked in or through a small space (eg. intake or vacuum related problem).

Yesterday I also took your guys’ suggestions regarding turning the a/c off, putting it in neutral, shifting gears manually, seeing if the sound changes when I turn, but it all came back inconclusive… the only sure things are that it happens when the car is good and warmed up (30 mins+),and is triggered only by releasing your foot off the gas above 2000 rpms and will continue until you either come to a complete stop or accelerate again. Shifting, turning, a/c don’t effect it at all. I have noticed that when I’m idling uphill the noise is slower to go away once I come to a stop.

Anyhow, next step? Would you all agree I need to remove the fan and belt and manually inspect all the bearings along the belt route?



EDIT: I failed to mention last time that at the end of the video I included the results from the OBD scan performed right after I recorded the screeching. There’s like 12 faults and I’m sure most of them have been there since before the noise (I should probably look into a few of those). If you guys notice anything you’ve dealt with before in the codes, advice on that is greatly appreciated also.

*** the EGR or secondary air pump or something was deleted from this car ages ago, before my time if that makes a difference.

VIDEO LINK:

https://youtu.be/qcqBsDuyIEo
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Last couple of years she's spent time all over the US from NYC to Detroit to New Mexico to LA and everywhere b/w, she's paid her dues in the Mojave, the Badlands and the Rockies. Recently rear ended by a prostitute in Dallas, where we are settled... for the moment

Was my dad's last car. He was a master mechanic w/ a successful Euro repair shop in Dallas. In his honor, I plan on running this thing 'til the wheels fall off.


Last edited by IkirisTheX5; 07-30-2021 at 03:57 PM. Reason: Additional info…
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  #23  
Old 07-30-2021, 07:20 PM
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LOL nice video

That is a huge, positive change that you can get the sound when in Park. It now rules out problems with the wheels, wheel bearings, diff, AT, CV joints, aerodynamic effects, etc.

You've definitely got some things going on with the codes there, not all (any?) of which could be caused by a bad pulley bearing.

So I'd reset the codes and see what comes back. You may as well work through them, largely independent of the noise. And it could be that you've got a hose that fell off and is causing many things, including the sound.

But now that you know the noise can happen when parked, it brings anything driven by the belt much more into the prime suspect area. Be very careful with the stethoscope and spinning things like the fan - it can be dangerous.

LOL, if all those codes are real (they come back after reset), this might actually be a time when a parts cannon approach has a good chance of fixing something.

But really, I'd start working through them. The sound may be one of the toughest things to track down, and maybe you'll fix the sound as you chase down the codes. Pay attention to when the codes come back. Check often.
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  #24  
Old 07-30-2021, 09:31 PM
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My sons e46 325i makes a noise very similar to that and on his its a bad power steering pump or a bad alternator bearing. Leaning towards the power steering since it doesnt work. If he ever comes back by sometime I will try to make a vid of his car. He's to lazy to change either but thats whats doing it on his.


Taking the belt off makes the sound go away is how we diagnosed it.


At least you will know for sure if its an accessory by removing the belt. Of course you cant run it long that way since the water pump isnt turning with the belt off.
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  #25  
Old 07-30-2021, 09:33 PM
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One thing thats different on his that I didnt mention was that the sound only happens at idle or slightly above idle. Giving it gas makes it go away.
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  #26  
Old 07-31-2021, 12:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IkirisTheX5 View Post


Thanks so much for your advise guys! I had a bit of a breakthrough last night after I ran the X5 for five hours straight mostly in traffic on a 101 degree Texas day…. The noise by that point was as bad as I’ve heard it, so empowered by my $4.99 Harbor Freight stethoscope I was finally able to recreate the sound while stationary by weighing down the gas pedal with the tire jack at around 2,000 rpm [link to video at bottom]. The only problem was I’ve never heard what a good vs bad bearing sounds like through a stethoscope. So for the components I could actually get to with the wand pretty much everything sounded like cacophonous ruckus. With the stethoscope off the screeching is so overwhelming (as you can hear in the video) that it sounds like it could be emanating from any part of engine (but almost definitely not the tranny).

I will say that although I was convinced the sound was coming from the intake system somewhere, by either power of your guys’ suggestion or actual observation, I am now almost convinced it’s a bearing as well. You can hear in the video during the parts where I rev the rpms or remove the jack from the gas pedal how the screeching winds up or down in a “circular” motion like it must be coming from something spinning rather than air being sucked in or through a small space (eg. intake or vacuum related problem).

Yesterday I also took your guys’ suggestions regarding turning the a/c off, putting it in neutral, shifting gears manually, seeing if the sound changes when I turn, but it all came back inconclusive… the only sure things are that it happens when the car is good and warmed up (30 mins+),and is triggered only by releasing your foot off the gas above 2000 rpms and will continue until you either come to a complete stop or accelerate again. Shifting, turning, a/c don’t effect it at all. I have noticed that when I’m idling uphill the noise is slower to go away once I come to a stop.

Anyhow, next step? Would you all agree I need to remove the fan and belt and manually inspect all the bearings along the belt route?



EDIT: I failed to mention last time that at the end of the video I included the results from the OBD scan performed right after I recorded the screeching. There’s like 12 faults and I’m sure most of them have been there since before the noise (I should probably look into a few of those). If you guys notice anything you’ve dealt with before in the codes, advice on that is greatly appreciated also.

*** the EGR or secondary air pump or something was deleted from this car ages ago, before my time if that makes a difference.

VIDEO LINK:

https://youtu.be/qcqBsDuyIEo
Sounds similar to mine only mine was a little more "musical", but it would not make much if any noise at idle only as the revs came up. But, I could definitely hear noise in the bearings at idle with the stethoscope using the cone end as a "directional microphone". Had to get it pretty close to really pin it down, but once it got close it was very obvious there was a bad bearing there. I think you're dealing with idler/pulley bearings. Could also be the bearings on the tensioner pully. Mine went bad at about 180,000 miles. I don't know the mileage you've got, but based on your sig it sound like a lot. IMHO replacing all the idler and tensioner pullies wouldn't hurt and it's not very expensive. If you are high mileage, they're likely to die soon anyway.

Last edited by Fifty150hs; 07-31-2021 at 12:31 PM.
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  #27  
Old 07-31-2021, 03:23 PM
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Definitely sounds like a bad bearing. The fan clutch engages when hot which changes the load on the belt and the dynamic changes a lot when coasting the engine.


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  #28  
Old 07-31-2021, 03:51 PM
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A bad bearing does sound just like that but the fact it goes away is unusual. If the bearing is pulled out of alignment such as when the bracket holding tensioner is loose it might come and go.

A vacuum leak can also sound like that and will would go away based on RPMs as the amount of vacuum changes with RPMs. If the codes in the video are what you are seeing that also is directional for a vacuum leak (multiple misfires). Wouldn't have those codes if it is just a bearing. I have heard that sound and found it was the oil fill cap or vacuum hose. If the oil cap it could be an emission control malfunction.

After watching your video, which was very entertaining, I can see why the stethoscope was not helpful. I don't think you have to completely remove the belt. If you use a wrench to release the pressure on the belt enough to remove the belt in that location you will be able to spin the other bearings and with a noise like you have you will feel and hear the bad one.

Have you tried listening to the sound from laying on the floor in the front and from each side?
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  #29  
Old 07-31-2021, 08:29 PM
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Another thing I forgot to mention on my sons e46 making the noise is that we change the water pump and all idler bearings already. So that just leaves the alternator or the power steering pump.
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  #30  
Old 07-31-2021, 11:24 PM
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Crowz: yeah, I’m leaning towards the idler pulley or tensioner at this point. The alternator is new, my power steering hasn’t been effected at all and I’m not sure what the symptoms are of a bad water pump but I haven’t had any temperature issues. Nothing really explains why it would be doing it only when coasting which is a bit worrisome to me that it may be a vacuum issue which I can see are much more difficult to diagnose. Anyhow, once I figure it out I’ll post it here. Please, likewise let us know if you resolve your son’s issue although it sounds like you have it narrowed down pretty well.
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Last couple of years she's spent time all over the US from NYC to Detroit to New Mexico to LA and everywhere b/w, she's paid her dues in the Mojave, the Badlands and the Rockies. Recently rear ended by a prostitute in Dallas, where we are settled... for the moment

Was my dad's last car. He was a master mechanic w/ a successful Euro repair shop in Dallas. In his honor, I plan on running this thing 'til the wheels fall off.

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