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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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  #1  
Old 12-18-2013, 06:35 PM
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WhiteFury WhiteFury is offline
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Steering Wheel Click and Squeak?

So anytime I'm turning my steering wheel to the left slowly while driving or in a parking lot sitting still makes a squeak sound. And it's intermittent.

And it does not make this sound while turning the steering will to the right, only when turning to left. And it only makes this sound when the steering wheel is centered and I'm turning left from the steering will being in the straight position.

When the sound guys go away if I turn the steering wheel to the left slightly and let go quickly it makes a slight clicking sound and only when the steering wheel is straight, what could this be?


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  #2  
Old 12-18-2013, 06:37 PM
jnew_85 jnew_85 is offline
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Hmm sounds like something might be just a little off with the auto lock feature. When you put the key in the slot the steering wheel snaps to place before the push to start is pressed. Then it goes "limp" again once started. Perhaps something is a little off in that. I'll look into it a little bit and see what I can come up with.
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  #3  
Old 12-18-2013, 07:07 PM
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Steering Wheel Click and Squeak?

When I have the key out. The wheel isn't locked and I can move it a bit back and forth and it makes a Grindy low type squeak and when I put the key in nothing changes and when it's started the wheel is smooth with power steering.


My wheel turns freely, although very stiff and hard to turn but it does turn no lock when the car is off and ignition key in my pocket.
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  #4  
Old 12-19-2013, 08:23 AM
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Sounds like a bad clockspring.
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  #5  
Old 12-23-2013, 06:33 AM
Augster Augster is offline
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Does it sound like a faint zipper? Or a rubbery "rubbing" sound?

A few of us are experiencing this issue, which for me, began as a rare, intermittent faint zippering sound to today's very loud rubbery "stretching" that now occurs almost everytime I'm turning the wheel at low speeds. The deteriorating progression appears to coincide with the onset of colder weather.

While no one has of yet provided the source of the issue, I believe its a rubberized bushing at the flex joint that allows the steering wheel to be adjusted up and down as the sound appears to emanate from under the dash and not up at the steering wheel where the clock spring is located. There is nothing else in parts diagrams that would otherwise indicate the source as all the other joints are metal-to-metal (universal joints, rack-and-pinion, and ball joints).

When I swap my steering wheel to an M-sport someday, I will tear apart the column and see if I can get some lubrication down to the suspect bushing(s) to see if that resolves the noise.
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  #6  
Old 12-23-2013, 08:04 AM
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Steering Wheel Click and Squeak?

Small squeak, but it stopped and I guess cold weather could have started it.


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  #7  
Old 12-23-2013, 10:58 AM
R1200 R1200 is offline
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Plastic parts expand and contract quite a bit when temperature changes. If the problem doesn't exist in summer I would consider the noise a feature of the car. Chasing it down in cold weather is uncomfortable, prone to broken parts and a waste of time, in my opinion.

When it's really cold, I'm thankful to have just shelter and an engine that starts.
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  #8  
Old 02-03-2014, 11:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R1200 View Post
Plastic parts expand and contract quite a bit when temperature changes. If the problem doesn't exist in summer I would consider the noise a feature of the car. Chasing it down in cold weather is uncomfortable, prone to broken parts and a waste of time, in my opinion.
Easy to state when you don't have to live with it...our 2010 GT has a similar issue that only occurs in cold weather. It makes a high pitch squeal/squeak when turned slowly (as in backing out of a parking spot) in either direction. I'm both glad and saddened to hear it occurs on another line meaning I can justify attributing it to a design issue rather than a fluke. I ventured over here to see if anyone has attempted or actually identified the culprit and the fix as I'm highly tempted to rip apart the steering column plastic covering to try and identify the root cause myself since it has already been to the dealer previously for this issue. They attempted lubrication and actually mentioned it will probably return.
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  #9  
Old 02-03-2014, 02:49 PM
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check the rubber booth inside the car ... column touch rubber and makes noise... spray wuth WD40 or rub with vaseline

happended to mine
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  #10  
Old 02-04-2014, 12:35 PM
fdriller9 fdriller9 is offline
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Is the sound more common when it's cold out?

I have a squeak coming from the bushing by the firewall. Too lazy to remove the access panel to lube it up. It's only first thing in the morning during the winter for me.

Use a grease, don't use WD-40. It will eventually dry out what ever your lubing and squeaking will come back.
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  #11  
Old 02-04-2014, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fdriller9 View Post
Is the sound more common when it's cold out?

I have a squeak coming from the bushing by the firewall. Too lazy to remove the access panel to lube it up. It's only first thing in the morning during the winter for me.

Use a grease, don't use WD-40. It will eventually dry out what ever your lubing and squeaking will come back.
After reading some other posts I listened from outside the car as the wife left this morning. Definitely could here the noise, but not anywhere near the intensity as when in the car so I'm fairly confident our noise should be from the same general vicinity or hopefully the same part.

This only occurs in cold weather (50F or lower) and it makes the sound without fail at these temperatures. Thanks for the heads up, I have some white lithium grease that I hope will do the trick, but this requires me actually getting the car from the wife as I'm what you would term a deliberate DIY'er in that I try to thoroughly research then dissemble, r&r (if necessary) and reassemble slower than the average bear.
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  #12  
Old 03-14-2014, 12:44 PM
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Just had the car in again for a few small items and they confirmed the noise was not coming from the lower column bearing. The description for the fix was to replace the SZL which must be the German acronym as the part number in my invoice was for a Switch Unit Steering (found under electrical systems not steering in realoem.com). Not sure if it would be the same part number for 3 series Fxx folks but for the GT the part number is: 61319301905

Fortunately we are still under warranty...oddly a quick check with getbmwparts.com resulted in no part found for above part number. There were three part numbers listed and only one resulted in a positive hit and was priced at $440 after ~$100 internet discount.

Our squeak occurred when turning the steering wheel in either direction and was occurring at higher temperatures with more frequency. There is a youtube video where someone actually DIY'd this job on an E36 (hopefully it is still similar for the newer models):
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  #13  
Old 03-15-2014, 08:50 AM
Augster Augster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daders View Post
Just had the car in again for a few small items and they confirmed the noise was not coming from the lower column bearing. The description for the fix was to replace the SZL which must be the German acronym as the part number in my invoice was for a Switch Unit Steering (found under electrical systems not steering in realoem.com).
Did they replace said part, and did the squeak go away?
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  #14  
Old 03-17-2014, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Augster View Post
Did they replace said part, and did the squeak go away?
Sorry for the delay, I was waiting for a nice cool morning before committing to my answer: yes and yes

Btw, this piece apparently required some type of programming according to the invoice.


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