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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 10-02-2013, 07:52 PM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Question Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

So lately I've noticed that when I hit a dip straight on, I sometimes hear a ka-thunk or popping sound. I never hear it if I hit a bump at an angle.

It reminds me of my POS Jeep with a 5" lift that would fry suspension joints ALL the TIME!

I suspect that something in my suspension is worn or possibly loose, but I can't tell?

I have checked the tires for uneven wear (Pirelli Scorpions w/10K on them) and I don't see any cupping or anything strange...yet. Also, I grabbed both front end shocks and yanked them back and forth, the left front one seemed ever so slightly loose (just a skoosh) and the right one seemed solid... strange?

I plan on throwing it up on jacks this weekend to change the tranny fluid and filter, and while I'm under there I'll take a look around. But what can I do besides shake the poo out of everything and maybe tap suspension joints with a mallet?

I was wondering if anyone here had any advice on where to start looking, or perhaps typical problem areas??

I'm enlisting you guys opinions because this is honestly the best d@mn forum around, and I trust you guys more than my local dealer.
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2013, 09:32 AM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

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  #3  
Old 10-03-2013, 10:28 AM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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With a 2009, maybe you should eliminate the engine mounts first as a possible cause of the thunk.

It's the bolts that tend to break. I think 2009 is an affected year, but not sure.

I wouldn't expect you to have worn struts or bad control arm bushings unless you have really high miles and lots of bad roads.
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  #4  
Old 10-03-2013, 11:10 AM
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mlukas161 mlukas161 is offline
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I would check your lower control arms / thrust arm bushings.
How many miles are on your X3?
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  #5  
Old 10-03-2013, 11:52 AM
bobbyjoe bobbyjoe is offline
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My rear shock/coil springs recently failed. My car has ~36k miles. Seems a bit early... and I live in a city... and don't go off roading with my X3. Just a reference point.
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  #6  
Old 10-03-2013, 12:04 PM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

My x3 has 63k on it. I do have the M sport package with the beefed up suspension, so I was thinking since it is stiffer, and the highways in town are concrete and they are beat up! I thought worn suspension parts might not be to far fetched. Supercourse I'll take a look at the motor mounts, I forgot that they were an issue on here. I'll let you guys know if I find anything this weekend


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  #7  
Old 10-06-2013, 10:16 AM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Update

So I changed my tranny filter and fluid yesterday, and while under there, I pulled all of the cover plates off and inspected everything I could. The motor mounts looked fine, and all of the suspension appeared ok. I did notice something strange, on the power steering lines that connect to the front axle, one of the lines seemed loose at the connection, NO leaks though.

I'm starting to suspect something with the steering is loose. As soon as I lowered my X3 and backed out of the driveway, I heard a pop sound, but still, no issues that I can see.

I used a tire depth gauge, and all of the tires are wearing evenly (though the back tires are wearing more than the front).

Side note: When checking the tranny fluid while the vehicle is running, don't forget to reinstall the fill plug BEFORE you shut the car off. I made one HELL of a mess.
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  #8  
Old 10-07-2013, 09:23 PM
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jdeday jdeday is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grabby544 View Post
So I changed my tranny filter and fluid yesterday, and while under there, I pulled all of the cover plates off and inspected everything I could. The motor mounts looked fine, and all of the suspension appeared ok. I did notice something strange, on the power steering lines that connect to the front axle, one of the lines seemed loose at the connection, NO leaks though.

I'm starting to suspect something with the steering is loose. As soon as I lowered my X3 and backed out of the driveway, I heard a pop sound, but still, no issues that I can see.

I used a tire depth gauge, and all of the tires are wearing evenly (though the back tires are wearing more than the front).

Side note: When checking the tranny fluid while the vehicle is running, don't forget to reinstall the fill plug BEFORE you shut the car off. I made one HELL of a mess.
Check the lower control arm bushings, I had the same problem. I had it replaced and the problem is gone. The bushings are hydraulic fluid filled, when they fail the control arm just rattles around.
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  #9  
Old 10-08-2013, 08:28 AM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

Ok, I'll check them out. Did you notice any uneven tire wear, or was your issue just ka-thunking as we'll?


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  #10  
Old 10-08-2013, 05:01 PM
wowturtleswow wowturtleswow is offline
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with the car on the ground, jounce the car up and down to see if you can recreate the sound. when you hear it, try to pinpoint the area from where its coming from. if possible, have a helper crawl underneath and watch your suspension while you jounce the car, or vice versa. also, watch the steering wheel as you jounce it up and down. it should NOT move.
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  #11  
Old 10-08-2013, 07:16 PM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wowturtleswow View Post
with the car on the ground, jounce the car up and down to see if you can recreate the sound. when you hear it, try to pinpoint the area from where its coming from. if possible, have a helper crawl underneath and watch your suspension while you jounce the car, or vice versa. also, watch the steering wheel as you jounce it up and down. it should NOT move.
I've tried that a little bit, but I didn't think to watch the steering wheel. I'll give that a try. Thanks!


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  #12  
Old 10-08-2013, 09:24 PM
munki3b0i munki3b0i is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

that noise sounds like your control arm bushings are worn. an easy way to check is to tap the brakes while rolling at idle. you should be able to recreate the ka thunk noise.


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  #13  
Old 10-09-2013, 08:28 AM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Front end suspension ka-thunk sound?

Ok, I'll give that a try.


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  #14  
Old 10-09-2013, 05:46 PM
Grabby544 Grabby544 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munki3b0i View Post
that noise sounds like your control arm bushings are worn. an easy way to check is to tap the brakes while rolling at idle. you should be able to recreate the ka thunk noise.


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Thanks munki!

Ok, so I tried this, and I was able to somewhat recreate the sound. I'm not 100% sure it was the control arm or perhaps the brakes.

Anyone know how to eliminate the brakes from this equation?

I guess I'm going to throw it up on jacks and try shaking the crap out of the wheels, maybe pull the wheels of and have someone shake the steering wheel back and forth.

Or, do you think I should get under it while its on the ground and have someone shake the steering wheel back and forth? That way there is more pressure on the steering assy, and control arms.

Thoughts?
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  #15  
Old 10-16-2014, 01:58 PM
phoenix325cic phoenix325cic is online now
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I have same problem on 2006 bbq x3. I have not pin pinged source, but will be replacing front shocks next weekend. There is thump sound that occurs when applying breaks after car in motion following a dip or bump or being parked/stopped for prolonged time. If shocks don't repair, then will move on to looking at various bushings (control arm, sway arm, etc..)

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  #16  
Old 10-16-2014, 01:59 PM
phoenix325cic phoenix325cic is online now
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Fat fingers! Ignore bbq....was thinking bmw, but darn Autospell replaced with bbq. Sorry about that.

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  #17  
Old 10-19-2014, 08:13 PM
codog2 codog2 is online now
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you check the rear springs for broken pigtails? when mine broke i would hear a metal rattle over bumps. the pigtail piece that broke off fell on top of the bottom mount
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  #18  
Old 10-28-2014, 10:44 AM
phoenix325cic phoenix325cic is online now
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Codog2, the thump sound is very specific to applying brakes. It just so happens the sound is pronounced when applying brakes after going over a bump or dip. I also observed it happened s when going from reverse to drive or vice versa, such as exiting a parking spot.
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  #19  
Old 10-28-2014, 10:45 AM
phoenix325cic phoenix325cic is online now
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Front shocks replaced, sound did not go away. More troubleshooting .. at least the ride is much better now with new shocks.
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  #20  
Old 10-28-2014, 03:55 PM
phoenix325cic phoenix325cic is online now
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I also plan to check the fit of the pads within the caliper assembly. Possibility could be movement of pads within calipers.
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  #21  
Old 10-28-2014, 05:31 PM
nightmareuki nightmareuki is offline
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i had similar simptops, where if you pumped the brakes when car was rolling on idle it would thump
solution was new thrust arms(upper control arms) and ball joint
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