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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 06-03-2013, 08:53 PM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

Hey all,

I've been noticing a very very distinct tire noise at speeds above 35-40. It's pretty loud while going straight or lightly turning. The strange part is that the noise noticeably subsides while making a sweeping right turn. Think of a wrap-around on/off-ramp. I can't say definitively, but I think the noise remains on left turns. it seems to go away only on right turns.

Obviously this is pointing to something off with the alignment. I've done tons of front end suspension work - its basically brand new. I've got H&R sways (set to middle-stiff), the touring cup kit, RE poly CABs. The rest is stock replacements (tie rods - inner + outer, CAs, sway bar links

I had an alignment done after the CAs and tie rods in late November 2012. Put the PSS tires on in Jan I think. Did not get it re-aligned after tires.

Before I take it to get aligned again, just wondering if anyone else has pretty significant noise from their PSS tires. It's noticeable and actually affects conversations inside the cabin. Also what tire wear characteristic, if any, would cause this noise? (I.e. cupping, feathering)

It's very disheartening to know I've basically got a brand new front end and am having alignment issues. Grrrrr.


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Last edited by whinojosa; 06-03-2013 at 08:55 PM.
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  #2  
Old 06-04-2013, 07:18 AM
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Sounds like wheel bearing to me.
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  #3  
Old 06-04-2013, 07:41 AM
SPDSKTR SPDSKTR is offline
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Originally Posted by jvr826 View Post
Sounds like wheel bearing to me.
Agreed.
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  #4  
Old 06-04-2013, 08:28 AM
isherwood isherwood is offline
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I'm rolling on Pilot Sports and was also wondering about a moderate buzz/hum when approaching stoplights. It's not unlike the sound my winter beater Alero made when its front bearings were shot, but that got worse with speed. With the Bimmer, it fades with speed and is no longer noticeable by about 30 mph.

I see that the fronts are scalloped a bit and wondered if I'm just hearing the large treadblocks smacking asphalt. What do wheel bearings sound like on these cars?
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  #5  
Old 06-04-2013, 08:29 PM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

Thanks guys. Would there be any excessive irregular tire wear as a result to check which bearing would be bad? Or, is the fact that the noise subsides when turning right an indication of which bearing to check?

I'll do a little research here on checking for bad bearings a little bit later. Just throwing the above questions out.

Thanks!


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  #6  
Old 06-04-2013, 10:37 PM
cvx5832 cvx5832 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whinojosa View Post
Thanks guys. Would there be any excessive irregular tire wear as a result to check which bearing would be bad? Or, is the fact that the noise subsides when turning right an indication of which bearing to check?

I'll do a little research here on checking for bad bearings a little bit later. Just throwing the above questions out.

Thanks!


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Correct, bad right bearing, as evidenced by the subsiding noise when that side is unloaded.

Front or rear is a tougher guess because the sound resonates and seemingly comes from all directions, but if its REALLY loud and booming I'd say its the rear.
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:39 PM
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whinojosa whinojosa is offline
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Thanks all. Today, i had my buddy listen closely as we drove in to work today. On a slight right-handed freeway transition, immediately upon straightening the steering wheel - the noise resumed (after the right turn). Also, it gradually came back on as the steering wheel centered. There was no audible lag, if that makes any sense. It seemed directly correlated. Is it possible this lack of delay is an indication of a bad front? Just throwing ideas out there.

I won't have time until this weekend to get it in the air and get the calipers off to check for sounds. At least i know it's definitely the right side!!
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:08 PM
cvx5832 cvx5832 is offline
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Originally Posted by whinojosa View Post
Thanks all. Today, i had my buddy listen closely as we drove in to work today. On a slight right-handed freeway transition, immediately upon straightening the steering wheel - the noise resumed (after the right turn). Also, it gradually came back on as the steering wheel centered. There was no audible lag, if that makes any sense. It seemed directly correlated. Is it possible this lack of delay is an indication of a bad front? Just throwing ideas out there.

I won't have time until this weekend to get it in the air and get the calipers off to check for sounds. At least i know it's definitely the right side!!
When I diagnosed mine, I took it on a nice even and long freeway stretch. Transferring the load front to rear with braking and accelerating will give you some clue, but I remember thinking at the time that it's still a guessing game.

Bring an extra set of ears to your run. Do several cycles and don't share your "findings" to each other until after you complete the runs.

At the end of the the day it will still be a guess, albeit an educated one. And at least on my coupe, there was no way I could tell the bad bearing on a lift where there's no load. You yourself said the sound went away when unloading the wheel on a turn.
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  #9  
Old 06-07-2013, 10:30 AM
slowlanemcvane slowlanemcvane is offline
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Checking wheel bearings is relatively simple. Jack up the car. Place it securely on jack stands. Grab the wheel at the 12 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions and attempt to rock the wheel in and out. If there's any play that you can see or feel, then you need to replace your bearings.
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  #10  
Old 07-24-2013, 12:17 AM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

Ok, so I swapped out the front right bearing. 200 ft/lbs is crazy to remove!! I basically put my entire body weight and had to jump onto the breaker ratchet to break the nut. My first experience with anything that tight.

In any event, the excessive noise remains. It exhibits the same characteristics as before, which is the fact that the sound reduces or goes away altogether when turning right. Again, an indication of a bad bearing on the passenger side. Obviously at this point there is only one option left: switch the passenger rear bearing. It's obviously harder to do than front as front took me about an hour.

Having all my symptoms, does it still sound like the bearing? Anyone else having issues with Michelin PSS noise?


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  #11  
Old 07-24-2013, 05:03 AM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

I'm running PSS all around w/o sound issues on my ZHP.

Did you check your alignment specs? May be running too much toe or out of spec camber n caster.

Also, running stiffer bushings does add to the vibrations felt and a slight amount of noise but not bad enough to be heard in the cabin.

Try dialing your swaybars to the softest setting this may also help.

On the tie rod replacement did they make sure the length was properly adjusted to match the previous ones?


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  #12  
Old 07-24-2013, 07:01 AM
GoForthFast GoForthFast is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whinojosa View Post

Before I take it to get aligned again, just wondering if anyone else has pretty significant noise from their PSS tires. It's noticeable and actually affects conversations inside the cabin. Also what tire wear characteristic, if any, would cause this noise? (I.e. cupping, feathering)

It's very disheartening to know I've basically got a brand new front end and am having alignment issues. Grrrrr.

No reason everything new would preclude needing an alignment.

I have H&R sways with poly CAB's too. Have Michelin Pilot Super Sports on my front end too.
Have no issues with noise from them whatsoever.
Love these tires. Cannot think of a tire I'd rather own.

How do you deal with high performance summer tires in winter? Never snow where you are in CA?

Last edited by GoForthFast; 07-24-2013 at 07:02 AM.
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  #13  
Old 07-24-2013, 07:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whinojosa View Post
Ok, so I swapped out the front right bearing. 200 ft/lbs is crazy to remove!! I basically put my entire body weight and had to jump onto the breaker ratchet to break the nut. My first experience with anything that tight.

In any event, the excessive noise remains. It exhibits the same characteristics as before, which is the fact that the sound reduces or goes away altogether when turning right. Again, an indication of a bad bearing on the passenger side. Obviously at this point there is only one option left: switch the passenger rear bearing. It's obviously harder to do than front as front took me about an hour.

Having all my symptoms, does it still sound like the bearing? Anyone else having issues with Michelin PSS noise?


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It is your REAR wheel bearing.
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  #14  
Old 07-24-2013, 09:18 PM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

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Originally Posted by GoForthFast View Post
No reason everything new would preclude needing an alignment.

I have H&R sways with poly CAB's too. Have Michelin Pilot Super Sports on my front end too.
Have no issues with noise from them whatsoever.
Love these tires. Cannot think of a tire I'd rather own.

How do you deal with high performance summer tires in winter? Never snow where you are in CA?
Thanks for the response. Nice to be able to eliminate the tires themselves with an almost apples-to-apples setup.

Sunny SoCal!! Snowed once back in the 90's. Hailed a few times here and there but definitely don't have a need for winter capable tires.





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  #15  
Old 07-24-2013, 09:47 PM
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It is your REAR wheel bearing.
Yes. I'm probably leaning toward this. Not lookiung forward to this one. I'll need tools as I'm no Smolck http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...598&highlight=

I'll get some quotes from the BMW CCA recommended shops around here too. I'm no strange to wrenching on this car, but this one worries me - prob just the daunting cost of specialized tools.

I'll keep this thread posted.
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Old 07-25-2013, 06:45 PM
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Yes. I'm probably leaning toward this. Not lookiung forward to this one. I'll need tools as I'm no Smolck http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...598&highlight=

I'll get some quotes from the BMW CCA recommended shops around here too. I'm no strange to wrenching on this car, but this one worries me - prob just the daunting cost of specialized tools.

I'll keep this thread posted.
A couple guys on E46fanatics rent the press you need. With that, the job is easy. Even with the rental you'll save a bundle over what a shop would charge you. I highly recommend you replace the hub with a new one while in there. Do it once correctly, and then never worry again.
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Old 07-25-2013, 07:56 PM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

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Originally Posted by smolck View Post
A couple guys on E46fanatics rent the press you need. With that, the job is easy. Even with the rental you'll save a bundle over what a shop would charge you. I highly recommend you replace the hub with a new one while in there. Do it once correctly, and then never worry again.
Funny you mention that... I'm probably gonna grab the rtab told from "Mango" from E46F tomorrow or Saturday. Unfortunately I didn't buy rear bearing or hub. Oh well, he's not too far from me. I'm definitely not going to buy the bearing / hub from the dealer.


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Old 07-25-2013, 08:07 PM
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Funny you mention that... I'm probably gonna grab the rtab told from "Mango" from E46F tomorrow or Saturday. Unfortunately I didn't buy rear bearing or hub. Oh well, he's not too far from me. I'm definitely not going to buy the bearing / hub from the dealer.


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The RTAB tool might not do you any good since we are talking abour rear wheel bearings though........
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:51 PM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

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The RTAB tool might not do you any good since we are talking abour rear wheel bearings though........
Hahahhaha I know that!! Just finally getting around to my Rogue RTABs for which I'm renting the tool from Mango who has the wheel bearing tool for rent as well. im already making a trip to grab the RTAB puller - it would have been nice to rent the wheel bearing tool set and do it in one shot if I had the bearings on hand.


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Old 07-26-2013, 07:31 AM
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What are your alignment specs, both F and R? I'm presuming you checked your tires, but just in case, run your bare hand on the tire surface, outside, inside and center for unevenness.
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Old 07-26-2013, 07:35 AM
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Hahahhaha I know that!! Just finally getting around to my Rogue RTABs for which I'm renting the tool from Mango who has the wheel bearing tool for rent as well. im already making a trip to grab the RTAB puller - it would have been nice to rent the wheel bearing tool set and do it in one shot if I had the bearings on hand.


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Mango is not my favorite person.

You don't really need the tool though, a drill and air chisel will remove the old RTAB's nicely. The rogue do not require a press to re-install. You will love the feel of the car when done.
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Old 07-26-2013, 01:15 PM
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What are your alignment specs, both F and R? I'm presuming you checked your tires, but just in case, run your bare hand on the tire surface, outside, inside and center for unevenness.
I have run a super-technical "feel" test and everything feels normal. I had it 4-Wheel aligned late last year after new tie rods/CA's. this was prior to new tires and not been done since the news tires went on. I'm doing RTABs this weekend and getting it aligned again, i'll just spring for 4-Wheel.

I"ll update the thread with results from that in relation to the tire/bearing noise.
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Old 07-29-2013, 06:19 AM
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To answer your question about the PSS's. They howl like mad at low speeds when they are well worn. I have two sets of front wheels, both have PSS. The new tires are quiet, the old rumble less than 10mph.
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Old 07-31-2013, 06:42 AM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

Well... Swapped out the RTABS over the weekend. I switched to Rogue Engineering Poly. They simply press in by hand. Rear suspension is tight again!!

As far as the noise, it seems more pronounced now. It is hard to have a conversation in the car now. Its the rear bearing for sure.

I'll update when I get around to doing the bearing.


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Old 07-31-2013, 06:43 AM
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Excessive tire noise - Michelin PSS

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To answer your question about the PSS's. They howl like mad at low speeds when they are well worn. I have two sets of front wheels, both have PSS. The new tires are quiet, the old rumble less than 10mph.
I mostly howl/rumble at speeds over 30mph. I'm 100% positive it's the bearing and not the tires. Thanks though!


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