I want to get my rear end noise checked out, but don't know of any reputable Seattle area independents. I'm definitely not going to bring it to dealership.
There's a place called Strictly BMW nearby, but their labor rates are pretty high - I guess that's to be expected.
Trying to diagnose my rear end noise - I've ruled out the power steering pump. Basically on low speed turns, I hear a low humming noise/grinding. Could this be because my differential fluid needs to be changed out? I don't have any other problems - no discernible wheel shake and I only hear this noise when I'm turning. What are the symptoms of rear wheel bearing failure? I read the DIY on it and it sounds reasonable... Is there a way to diagnose whether this is the issue without pulling the axle out?
Oh yeah - I actually hear a low throbbing sound that is related to speed the first 50 feet that I drive after it's been sitting for a while - I'm guessing this is because the differential gear oil has pooled and it's a little noisier back there until the oil starts sticking to the gears?