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

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  #1  
Old 09-30-2010, 03:59 AM
al_macaroni al_macaroni is offline
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Wiper Chatter

We are receiving some significant rain today in the Mid-Atlantic and my wipers are chattering like crazy.

Back in August when I had the car in for an oil change, the dealer installed new OE replacement wipers.

This is the first time I have driven this car in the rain since the new wipers. Is anyone else having the same experience with the OE replacement wipers chattering?

I was planning on installing Bosch Icon wipers at some point in time. Now, I might be getting them sooner than later.

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 09-30-2010, 09:03 AM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by al_macaroni View Post
Is anyone else having the same experience with the OE replacement wipers chattering?
Yes. When X3 was new, I was plagued with juddering wipers - gave up on the O.E. refills and went to these:

http://www.autobarn.net/piwiblre.html

Never had the problem since (over 3 years).
They last much, much longer, and perform really well.
These refills fit in the X3's wiper blades perfectly (they don't fit all types of blades).

I'd be wary of using Bosch Icons on the X3.
You would lose your anti-lift aerofoil on the driver side.
From most accounts they might look great, and work well enough initially, but they don't last too long, and they are throwaways.
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  #3  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:16 AM
SWMc SWMc is offline
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I had the exact same problem with mine after my service visit. What the dealer is calling OE refills are not really OE refills. They are cheap snip-to-fits. This is another area where we got cheated by BMW.

http://www.bmwtis.com/tsb/bulletins/...p/B610603g.htm

http://www.bmwtis.com/tsb/attachment...structions.pdf
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  #4  
Old 09-30-2010, 11:28 AM
PPXYZ PPXYZ is offline
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My wipers have always stuttered or chattered even when it is raining buckets. I have a low-mileage car so they are basically new. I may give up and go with a BETTER BRAND.

Pretty cheeeeeezy behavior.
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  #5  
Old 09-30-2010, 12:32 PM
SWMc SWMc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PPXYZ View Post
My wipers have always stuttered or chattered even when it is raining buckets. I have a low-mileage car so they are basically new. I may give up and go with a BETTER BRAND.

Pretty cheeeeeezy behavior.
Agree'd. The actual OE wipers are Bosch, are made in Belgium, and are good quality. I've been able to aquire a few sets of them from various sources and stash them away. My dealer says they cannot get them.

Eventually I'll have to go with PIAA's I guess.
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  #6  
Old 09-30-2010, 01:26 PM
al_macaroni al_macaroni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Supercourse View Post
Yes. When X3 was new, I was plagued with juddering wipers - gave up on the O.E. refills and went to these:

http://www.autobarn.net/piwiblre.html

Never had the problem since (over 3 years).
They last much, much longer, and perform really well.
These refills fit in the X3's wiper blades perfectly (they don't fit all types of blades).

I'd be wary of using Bosch Icons on the X3.
You would lose your anti-lift aerofoil on the driver side.
From most accounts they might look great, and work well enough initially, but they don't last too long, and they are throwaways.
Thanks for the tip.
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  #7  
Old 09-30-2010, 03:50 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWMc View Post
Agree'd. The actual OE wipers are Bosch, are made in Belgium, and are good quality. I've been able to aquire a few sets of them from various sources and stash them away. My dealer says they cannot get them.

Eventually I'll have to go with PIAA's I guess.
+1. BMW started doing this last year in the US, probably to save costs on the fact that everyone with Free Maintenance will request them often. I never had a problem with the OEM ones made in Germany or Belgium (or wherever), but the new cheap ones made in Mexico sucked.

The same thing is happening now on the 3er models, as I noticed the ones the dealers replaced on my mom's 325i aren't the same as what comes from the factory.. Hence, the worse wiper performance.

I went to the Bosch.de website (Bosch is the original supplier from the factory) and found the fitment model numbers. Of course, the file is conveniently too large to upload but here's the model numbers:

X3: 346S (driver with spoiler), 346 (passenger), H351 (rear)

Whatever you do, don't use Rain-X. Made that mistake with my mom's car and it was a pain to remove.

Last edited by AzNMpower32; 09-30-2010 at 03:54 PM.
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  #8  
Old 10-01-2010, 09:54 AM
SWMc SWMc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzNMpower32 View Post
+1. BMW started doing this last year in the US, probably to save costs on the fact that everyone with Free Maintenance will request them often. I never had a problem with the OEM ones made in Germany or Belgium (or wherever), but the new cheap ones made in Mexico sucked.

The same thing is happening now on the 3er models, as I noticed the ones the dealers replaced on my mom's 325i aren't the same as what comes from the factory.. Hence, the worse wiper performance.

I went to the Bosch.de website (Bosch is the original supplier from the factory) and found the fitment model numbers. Of course, the file is conveniently too large to upload but here's the model numbers:

X3: 346S (driver with spoiler), 346 (passenger), H351 (rear)

Whatever you do, don't use Rain-X. Made that mistake with my mom's car and it was a pain to remove.
I made the same mistake only with their orange washer fluid. Wipers hopped like you had painted the windshield with pancake syrup. I had to siphon it out and go back the the plain old blue stuff.
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  #9  
Old 10-01-2010, 11:02 AM
T1T2GRE T1T2GRE is offline
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Heh. The chatter is killin' me right now, but I just can't bring myself to cave in and buy something that they should be providing. Guess I'll have to suck it up.
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  #10  
Old 10-01-2010, 11:18 AM
ubermax ubermax is offline
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Do This First

had the same issue - in my case the blades weren't inserted/installed correctly - ask the dealership or your servicer to check this first - I do have some chatter now but only the rear wiper .
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  #11  
Old 10-01-2010, 11:43 AM
PPXYZ PPXYZ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWMc View Post
Agree'd. The actual OE wipers are Bosch, are made in Belgium, and are good quality. I've been able to aquire a few sets of them from various sources and stash them away. My dealer says they cannot get them.

Eventually I'll have to go with PIAA's I guess.
Mine are the ones that came with the car.

They have always been a bit iffy in moving the water away but now they are chattering. Maybe I received a bad batch. As far as I can tell the back one is fine although I rarely use it.
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  #12  
Old 10-02-2010, 04:08 AM
PSUEng PSUEng is offline
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I bought a used 2007 a few months back that apparently had brand new inserts put in at the dealer under maintenance warranty. They chattered terribly. I ended up putting the Bosch Icons on and they work great. I also had the windshield replaced since it was ridden with stone chips and in my state, insurance covers windshield replacement with no deductible. I think that may have helped as well.

So: Try the Icon's, and maybe clay bar your windshield to get all the grime off.
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  #13  
Old 10-02-2010, 07:30 AM
al_macaroni al_macaroni is offline
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I'm a fan of the Icons. I have a set on my G35x and they have lasted 4 years and over 100,000 miles on the road.
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BMW CCA #422951

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  #14  
Old 10-02-2010, 08:28 AM
SWMc SWMc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PSUEng View Post
I bought a used 2007 a few months back that apparently had brand new inserts put in at the dealer under maintenance warranty. They chattered terribly. I ended up putting the Bosch Icons on and they work great. I also had the windshield replaced since it was ridden with stone chips and in my state, insurance covers windshield replacement with no deductible. I think that may have helped as well.

So: Try the Icon's, and maybe clay bar your windshield to get all the grime off.
Bon Ami 1886 (it's the original formula) is another good way to get a windshield good and clean. Even though they don't recommend using it on windshields I still do and have been for years. I use a lot of water with very little pressure and I've never seen any signs of scratching.

http://www.bonami.net/ProductDetails...ductCode=04036



BMW even issued a bulletin on it many years ago:

BMW Service Bulletin

Bulletin Number: 61 02 94 (3990)
Noisy Wipers, Poor Cleaning: Group 61 Electrical

Woodcliff Lake, NJ
May 1994
Product Engineering

SUBJECT:
Windshield Wipers Are Noisy Or Do Not Clean Properly

MODELS:
All

Situation:
Windshield wiper blades may start to make noise, or fail to clean the windshield properly, even though the blades are not worn and are properly adjusted.

This can be caused by contaminants on the glass, such as oily road deposits or wax residues from car washes. These contaminants can cause the blades to chatter across the glass or fail to wipe cleanly.

Correction:
Common contaminants that are not removed by conventional glass cleaner can be cleaned with Bon Ami(R), a household cleaning product.

The cleaner should be applied on a wet cloth or sponge and the windshield must be thoroughly and evenly scrubbed. Wipe off residue with a clean,dry cloth before the product dries on the glass.

Warranty Status:
Information only.


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  #15  
Old 10-03-2010, 05:50 AM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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Ok you can cringe at this . . . and I might add I have never had this issue with the X3 . . but in cars gone past if cleaning the glass and changing wiper blades did not fix this the solution is to change the angle of attack of the wiper blades on the glass . . two shifting spanners on the flat part if the wiper arm as far apart as possible and gentle twist - not much . . not much at all . . . I await howls of protest . . but it does work (or did) when I had the problem.
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  #16  
Old 10-03-2010, 11:29 AM
SWMc SWMc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x3oiler View Post
Ok you can cringe at this . . . and I might add I have never had this issue with the X3 . . but in cars gone past if cleaning the glass and changing wiper blades did not fix this the solution is to change the angle of attack of the wiper blades on the glass . . two shifting spanners on the flat part if the wiper arm as far apart as possible and gentle twist - not much . . not much at all . . . I await howls of protest . . but it does work (or did) when I had the problem.
No protest here as I can see where that would work if the blade wasn't perfectly perpendicular to the glass.

Worst case you have to replace a relatively inexpensive wiper arm.
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  #17  
Old 10-03-2010, 03:37 PM
PSUEng PSUEng is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x3oiler View Post
Ok you can cringe at this . . . and I might add I have never had this issue with the X3 . . but in cars gone past if cleaning the glass and changing wiper blades did not fix this the solution is to change the angle of attack of the wiper blades on the glass . . two shifting spanners on the flat part if the wiper arm as far apart as possible and gentle twist - not much . . not much at all . . . I await howls of protest . . but it does work (or did) when I had the problem.
Definitely valid. Attack angle can greatly affect chatter. Thing is, there is a "special tool" to check attack angle. My dealer said that the attack angle was in spec. I was like, OK, then what's left: I have a pitted window (but clean), the blades are new....so I pulled the blades and got a new windshield. but yes, attack angle must be confirmed.
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  #18  
Old 12-20-2010, 01:42 PM
geta356 geta356 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWMc View Post
I had the exact same problem with mine after my service visit. What the dealer is calling OE refills are not really OE refills. They are cheap snip-to-fits. This is another area where we got cheated by BMW.

http://www.bmwtis.com/tsb/bulletins/...p/B610603g.htm

http://www.bmwtis.com/tsb/attachment...structions.pdf
I have had the dealer replace the inserts twice, to no avail. I finally bit the bullet, and bought some Bosch Icons, fixed the problem. BMW wiper blades "suck"..

GT
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  #19  
Old 12-20-2010, 01:52 PM
PSUEng PSUEng is offline
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I'm running Bosch Icons with great results.
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  #20  
Old 12-20-2010, 04:35 PM
davezaristo davezaristo is offline
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i just got a set of Icons yesterday as well and runs great...also, it is buy 1 get 1 free at Kragen, here in California at least..
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  #21  
Old 12-20-2010, 05:46 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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Hmm, my Bosch Icons have been streaking pretty badly despite my attempts to wipe them off carefully to rid them of contamination (grime, sand particles). They're less than a year old.......I think the rubber blade that contacts the windshield is no longer smooth for unknown reasons.
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  #22  
Old 12-20-2010, 06:11 PM
greenX3 greenX3 is offline
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I just bought the Icons last weekend. GREAT wipers. Quiet and they wipe clean.
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  #23  
Old 12-20-2010, 11:05 PM
littleE46 littleE46 is offline
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I had wiper chatter on my X3...replace the wipers this morning with Bosch...raining all day and no more problems.
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  #24  
Old 12-25-2010, 12:40 PM
S93D S93D is offline
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The best wipers are found by trial and error.

Be wary of using orange wiper fluid and Rain-X on the front windshield. Rain-X is great if drizzle is very light and you are driving fast but is bad for wipers. I think it's good only for the side windows.

Consumer Reports did a test and their results are a guide but not specific for our cars. They did say that all wipers they tested are good only for 6 months to a year. They liked the Michelin RainForce and Anco 31 but I found the Anco 31 to be just average, not better. Bosch Icons and Excel Plus were not better. I found the BMW OEM to be great. Saab Bosch OEM wipers work well but they are 22 inches, only good for the X3 driver's side. In fact, they look identical to the BMW original (spoiler, shape, etc.). I also tried Dodge OEM wipers made by Japanese company NWB. They are only ok and they are not cheap.
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  #25  
Old 12-26-2010, 01:12 PM
PPXYZ PPXYZ is offline
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I did not like the original BMW wipers but they seem to have settled in and are fine now after more than a year of use. What I do not understand is the timing of the wipers. The intermittent setting appears to be completely random and, in a really heavy downpour, they speed up all on their own.
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