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3-Series (E46, E90) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.

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Old 01-21-2004, 11:07 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hey Guys,
First off let me say I appreciate the help with my previous post regarding the engine drone I thought I was hearing. Ive pretty much determined that its the nature of the car and its alright.

The one last issue im having with this car since I purchased it is that ive become progressively more aware of what IS a driveline noise that im hearing. I believe it is the rear differential. When I accelerate to between 30 and 40mph I am hearing this low whine coming from the rearward part of the car. I know from experience driveline whine is an indication of possible diff problems from previous grand cherokees ive owned which are notorious for differential issues with the Dana 44 and 35 american axles. Im fairly certain its not tires because as soon as I release the pedal the noise stops.

My question is this. Is some level of whine from the rear differential acceptable, or should there be none? I took it in once to the dealer and they checked the fluids and said it was fine. That day however I could unfortunately not ride with him since I was in a hurry even though he offered to do so. So I called back today and scheduled another appointment for tomorrow, I just dont want these guys thinking im crazy.
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Old 01-21-2004, 02:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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my car has a whineing noise from time to time I don't know what it is either would like to know i also have a clunk noise when i slow down used
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Old 01-21-2004, 02:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I have a '04 330Ci and I noticed a clunky noice when the car starts moving. The dealer found that it was from a defective differential. Maybe this is a common problem with BMW?
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Old 01-21-2004, 07:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The diffs aren't commonly problematic, but they do have the occassional dud. My shop foreman has an 03 330 performance package, and his diff sprung a leak, and started whining.

Clunk noises are usually from the trans output flange on the automatics. This noise is heard when the driveline is loaded and then laxed. There are other issues for noises when the auto's shift, mainly downshifting, and that is a programming issue usually.
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Old 02-11-2004, 06:31 PM   #5 (permalink)
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UPDATE: I took the car in Yesterday again and drove with a tech who agreed the noise was not normal, I received a call today stating they would keep my car one more night while they await a brand new rear differential assembly to arrive, I should fingers-crossed have the car back tomorrow.
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Old 03-02-2004, 08:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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A shop miss diagnosed my cars groan for a bad diff. Turns out it was bad bearings. Does the sound get louder with speed? Does it get quiet in a right or left turn. My car would groan so loud I couldn't hear my stereo well but would quite down for a second in right hand turns. So it was the right rear bearing because weight is taken off the right side and put on the left for a second or two in the turn. I put a used limited slip dif in my car because I was told that was the source, I call this an accidental upgrade and glad I didn't pay a shop to do it $1700, but I only spent $200 and a day of my time.

One really important note if you install a used diff. Tap out all the threads so the bolts go in easy. I had to take my diff down to clean the rust because I couldn't get the bolts in the first time. SEcond time it was so easy to line the four bolts and I could start them by hand. Time saver!
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Old 03-04-2004, 04:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by jesseboyd@Mar 2 2004, 10:28 PM
A shop miss diagnosed my cars groan for a bad diff. Turns out it was bad bearings. Does the sound get louder with speed? Does it get quiet in a right or left turn. My car would groan so loud I couldn't hear my stereo well but would quite down for a second in right hand turns. So it was the right rear bearing because weight is taken off the right side and put on the left for a second or two in the turn. I put a used limited slip dif in my car because I was told that was the source, I call this an accidental upgrade and glad I didn't pay a shop to do it $1700, but I only spent $200 and a day of my time.

One really important note if you install a used diff. Tap out all the threads so the bolts go in easy. I had to take my diff down to clean the rust because I couldn't get the bolts in the first time. SEcond time it was so easy to line the four bolts and I could start them by hand. Time saver!
The noise is definitely gone now, my only semi-gripe is that it clearly says on the fix sheet "RMFD FINAL DRIVE" as the replacement part, so the bytch better last. :P
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