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3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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Old 05-17-2004, 01:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Yo fellas,

My 96 318i 4 door is making a weird little rattling sound. This noise occurs quite a bit now, but is most prominent when my car is ever at 2000 rpm. It occurs when sitting neutral and at the same rpms through all my gears, including reverse (5 spd manual). I have thought about something possibly being loose within the exhaust system because it sounds like it comes from under the car. I know its not the usual clicking of a traditional 4 cyl engine either. What I am afraid of is that it is worse at the select rpms. Its sounds like a very metallic rattling noise. Any insight is helpful before I watch my car fall apart or have it looked at for X amount of $ at a dealer. Thanks. ghead

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Old 05-17-2004, 05:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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It could be valve noise, or exaust hanger somewhere.

To check if it's valve noise, start the car and open the hood. Listen for the clicking noise at 2k. If it's coming from the engine it's probably just valve noise.

If you have the car running at 2k and stand outside of it listen towards the exit of the exaust pipe. If the sound seems to be coming out the tailpipe this is most likely your problem.

I've found that in my car at around 1100 it makes hte rear deck rattle like hell, so I imagine it's just a broken exaust hanger if you don't hear it constantly.

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Old 05-17-2004, 06:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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what grade gas are you putting in? It might be knocking or pinging from your engine from premature detonation. If you put in anything higher than 87 then disregared.
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Old 05-17-2004, 08:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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try turning off your climate control fan. my car made a click (at certain revs) and i shut it off then it went away. after about a week it went away
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Old 05-17-2004, 09:48 PM   #5 (permalink)
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ghead Could be your timing belt bearing. Ive had someones 318 make a weird noise and they thought it was something horrible, so I got my lil "listening" tool and put it up against the metal where the bearing is and turns out I was right!!!! but you would probly notice if it was that..... :P
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Old 05-17-2004, 09:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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is it coming from the top right corner of your dash if is open up your hood. face your car and to the right right where the hood would meet your car at the winshield there is a platic thing press it and see if it moves and makes a sound if it does most likley it is your problem i had this then fixed it with some shoe glue to keep it in place
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Old 05-18-2004, 10:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I know its not the valves, its not anything with the climate control, cause thats a mess in itself right now all of a sudden...thats why I'm leaning towards it being an exahaust problem (mounting bracket is something to check). The timing belt is a possibility cause I've read where the "belt" is actually a chain in BMWs, so that would explain a louder metallic rattling noise. I just hope that means the belt isn't ready to go. I only have about 78k miles on my car. I am just curious because it occurs at its loudest at 2000rpms, nothing really higher and nothing really lower than that. But thanks to all your guys for the input...I'll check all of them out when I get home from work today.
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Old 05-18-2004, 11:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Your timing CHAIN should be fine with only 78,000. Timing belts last longer than that. You can have it checked, but look for something else causing the problem.
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Old 05-18-2004, 03:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Make a video with the sound of that clicking noise, then we can help you better!
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