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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 01-21-2005, 01:49 PM
AZGal AZGal is offline
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Impressions, problems at 5000 miles

Hello All
Have had my 2005 325i for a few months now with 5000 miles on it. I am seeing a few issues.
This just started a couple of days ago.
I hear like a rattling sound from near the front door or window on the passenger side. Tried to listen hard and it seems to be coming from where the door is fixed to the car or near the windows. Its quite irritating and feel like something is loose and might fall off.
Just wanted to find out if any of you have seen any problem like this?
The noise seems to come most when the road is not smooth ( like surface roads ) and it comes even while driving and braking on bumps etc. Will be taking it to the dealer but was wondering if it was something that I could set right?

The other thing I have noticed is that if I leave the steering of the car it starts moving towards the right rather than go straight.

Apart from these I havent really had any other problems and the car is beautiful. Makes me very happy .
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  #2  
Old 01-21-2005, 03:06 PM
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Terry Kennedy Terry Kennedy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZGal
This just started a couple of days ago.
I hear like a rattling sound from near the front door or window on the passenger side. Tried to listen hard and it seems to be coming from where the door is fixed to the car or near the windows. Its quite irritating and feel like something is loose and might fall off.
Just wanted to find out if any of you have seen any problem like this?
The noise seems to come most when the road is not smooth ( like surface roads ) and it comes even while driving and braking on bumps etc. Will be taking it to the dealer but was wondering if it was something that I could set right?
The most common issue in this area is the seat belt anchor. This is an adjustable plastic piece which slides up and down. However, it could be a large number of other things - this type of noise is very hard to localize while driving - it could be anything from change in the center console change holder to something in the glove box. I'd suggest having someone else drive around with you sitting in the passenger seat to try to pin it down. That would definitely help your dealer with it, if it is something the dealer needs to correct.
Quote:
The other thing I have noticed is that if I leave the steering of the car it starts moving towards the right rather than go straight.
If this also started recently, it could be from hitting a pothole, speed bump, or curb, or it could be due to tire inflation pressure (how recently have you checked your tire pressure)?

You get a courtesy alignment from the dealer with a new car, but you have to request it within 1200 (or is it 1000?) miles. Maybe they'll do one for you if you ask nicely and tell them it has always been like this.
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2005, 03:32 PM
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dallasfan824 dallasfan824 is offline
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I have the same rattle! I brought mine in a few days ago for a D pillar rattle and since that has been fixed, I was able to locate the rattle in the door panel. I am going to bring it in (again, third time) for them to fix it. I only seem to have it on the driver's side, but I am going to have them look at both.
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  #4  
Old 01-21-2005, 04:24 PM
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markl53 markl53 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dallasfan824
I have the same rattle! I brought mine in a few days ago for a D pillar rattle and since that has been fixed, I was able to locate the rattle in the door panel. I am going to bring it in (again, third time) for them to fix it. I only seem to have it on the driver's side, but I am going to have them look at both.
"D" pillar? Aren't they called "A", "B", "C"?
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  #5  
Old 01-21-2005, 05:45 PM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markl53
"D" pillar? Aren't they called "A", "B", "C"?
The girl in the porn video I watched last night had "DD" pillars.

AZGal, I bet you dollars to donuts that the rattle is your front passenger seat headrest. Mine rattles as well.

The steering is supposed to go to the right, slightly. If it's a marked shift to the right, your alignment or something is off. But otherwise it's normal, in case you fall asleep at the wheel.
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  #6  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
The girl in the porn video I watched last night had "DD" pillars.

AZGal, I bet you dollars to donuts that the rattle is your front passenger seat headrest. Mine rattles as well.

The steering is supposed to go to the right, slightly. If it's a marked shift to the right, your alignment or something is off. But otherwise it's normal, in case you fall asleep at the wheel.

is the radio on when you hear this? For a while they had issues with HK sound and rattles in the speaker grilles....

also ( and I feel silly about it) the seatbelt buckle gets hung up on the seat release, and can rattle you crazy before you realize it.
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  #7  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:13 PM
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MMME30W MMME30W is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
The steering is supposed to go to the right, slightly.
Hmmmm...why would that be? (Just curious.) Would have thought in the US with the crown of the road, and driving on the right, that cars "might" be setup to drift slightly left...?
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  #8  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:18 PM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obmd1
is the radio on when you hear this? For a while they had issues with HK sound and rattles in the speaker grilles....

also ( and I feel silly about it) the seatbelt buckle gets hung up on the seat release, and can rattle you crazy before you realize it.
No, radio is not on.

You have a coupe, I have a sedan, so I don't have your problem. My front passenger seatbelt still manages to knock against the side like crazy when my windows are down and I'm going above 30 mph, though. Drives me batty.
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  #9  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
No, radio is not on.

You have a coupe, I have a sedan, so I don't have your problem. My front passenger seatbelt still manages to knock against the side like crazy when my windows are down and I'm going above 30 mph, though. Drives me batty.
hmmm... somthing to think about before I order that E90...I HATE rattles.
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  #10  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:24 PM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingspan
Hmmmm...why would that be? (Just curious.) Would have thought in the US with the crown of the road, and driving on the right, that cars "might" be setup to drift slightly left...?
Imagine a 35 mph two lane mountain road, one lane in each direction. As you fall asleep, would you rather drift into oncoming traffic on the left, resulting in a head-on crash equivalent to 180 mph (because both you and the oncoming car were actually going 90 mph), leaving you and your wife burnt to cinders and your kids orphans, OR would you rather drift to the right, crashing through the guardrail and plunging 100 feet down the rocky cliff so that your car comes comfortably to a rest on its roof in a sea of flames, leaving you and your wife burnt to cinders and your kids orphans? I do believe that all sane men would choose option B.

Seriously, though, better to go off the road and hit a tree at 35 mph than crash into oncoming 35 mph traffic head-on.
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  #11  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:28 PM
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MMME30W MMME30W is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
Imagine a 35 mph two lane mountain road, one lane in each direction. As you fall asleep, would you rather drift into oncoming traffic on the left, resulting in a head-on crash equivalent to 180 mph (because both you and the oncoming car were actually going 90 mph), leaving you and your wife burnt to cinders and your kids orphans, OR would you rather drift to the right, crashing through the guardrail and plunging 100 feet down the rocky cliff so that your car comes comfortably to a rest on its roof in a sea of flames, leaving you and your wife burnt to cinders and your kids orphans? I do believe that all sane men would choose option B.

Seriously, though, better to go off the road and hit a tree at 35 mph than crash into oncoming 35 mph traffic head-on.
Ok, noted. For the record I would rather frankly the car not drift either one way or another, but remain dead straight in terms of steering setup.

I am pretty sure, though, somewhere in the sea of paper that is my Mini Cooper library is some documentation on the alignment that sets up the car to drift slightly right i.e. in Britain you drive on the left, the crown of the road is set to be higher in the middle than the curb (due to the usual heavy rainfall), the combination of which is supposed to keep the car straight. YMMV I suppose.
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  #12  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZGal
Hello All
Have had my 2005 325i for a few months now with 5000 miles on it. I am seeing a few issues.
This just started a couple of days ago.
I hear like a rattling sound from near the front door or window on the passenger side. Tried to listen hard and it seems to be coming from where the door is fixed to the car or near the windows. Its quite irritating and feel like something is loose and might fall off.
Just wanted to find out if any of you have seen any problem like this?
The noise seems to come most when the road is not smooth ( like surface roads ) and it comes even while driving and braking on bumps etc. Will be taking it to the dealer but was wondering if it was something that I could set right?

The other thing I have noticed is that if I leave the steering of the car it starts moving towards the right rather than go straight.

Apart from these I havent really had any other problems and the car is beautiful. Makes me very happy .
I heard the same rattle in my 2005 325i with less than 1000 miles. It seemed to go away.
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  #13  
Old 01-21-2005, 06:37 PM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingspan
Ok, noted. For the record I would rather frankly the car not drift either one way or another, but remain dead straight in terms of steering setup.

I am pretty sure, though, somewhere in the sea of paper that is my Mini Cooper library is some documentation on the alignment that sets up the car to drift slightly right i.e. in Britain you drive on the left, the crown of the road is set to be higher in the middle than the curb (due to the usual heavy rainfall), the combination of which is supposed to keep the car straight. YMMV I suppose.
Perhaps you are right. A quick search yielded:

Quote:
Originally Posted by http://www.**************/alignment.htm
Another problem with steering center has to do with the type of roads that are driven on. Most roads are crowned to allow for water drainage, and unless you drive in England, Japan or another country where they drive on the wrong (sorry) left side of the road, you usually drive on the right side of the crown. This may cause the vehicle to drift to the right so that the steering wheel will appear to be off-center to the left on a straight road. The best way to compensate for this is as follows:...
Quote:
Originally Posted by http://www.unofficialbmw.com/all/suspension/all_alignment.html
All cars will drift right almost all of the time, the question is, how much is acceptable. The major reason for drift is the road camber, most roads slope off to the right, the car follows this slope.
I , I've always heard that explanation I gave. Maybe it's just a bunch of fluff.
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  #14  
Old 01-22-2005, 12:38 PM
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NASA43 NASA43 is offline
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No rattles for me and I am kinda surprised. I had read alot about rattles. I am at 8000 miles and the car is still as quiet and tight as when I drove off the lot.
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  #15  
Old 01-22-2005, 06:42 PM
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FenPhen FenPhen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
My front passenger seatbelt still manages to knock against the side like crazy when my windows are down and I'm going above 30 mph, though. Drives me batty.
I get this too (buckle hitting the B pillar), because when passengers take off the seat belt, the buckle tends to end up between the seat and the pillar. Just slide the buckle down.
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  #16  
Old 01-22-2005, 06:44 PM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FenPhen
I get this too (buckle hitting the B pillar), because when passengers take off the seat belt, the buckle tends to end up between the seat and the pillar. Just slide the buckle down.
Isn't that where it should be?
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  #17  
Old 01-22-2005, 07:08 PM
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I have just over 7K miles on mine and already I'm going to have to take it in to have the shade on the sun roof fixed for the second time. It's funny, I had my 328i for 5 years and never had a problem with the shade, I've had this car just over six months and it's broken twice. Kinda pisses me off.
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Old 01-22-2005, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
Isn't that where it should be?
Not if it's rattling while you're driving and annoying you.

The buckle rattle happens when the buckle is in the middle of the belt and is allowed to bounce between the passenger seat and the B pillar. If you slide the buckle down lower, it does not have as much movement freedom. (Or slide it up, though it might come back down.)
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  #19  
Old 01-22-2005, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FenPhen
Not if it's rattling while you're driving and annoying you.

The buckle rattle happens when the buckle is in the middle of the belt and is allowed to bounce between the passenger seat and the B pillar. If you slide the buckle down lower, it does not have as much movement freedom. (Or slide it up, though it might come back down.)
Alternatives:
1. You can slide the belt over the seat side bolster. That way it won't touch the pillar panel anymore.

2. You can stick a small piece of self-adhesive black felt in the spot where the plastic buckle cover hits the pillar panel.

I did #2 and it works like a charm, even driving at 80mph with all the windows open.

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  #20  
Old 01-23-2005, 12:07 AM
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swchang swchang is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FenPhen
Not if it's rattling while you're driving and annoying you.

The buckle rattle happens when the buckle is in the middle of the belt and is allowed to bounce between the passenger seat and the B pillar. If you slide the buckle down lower, it does not have as much movement freedom. (Or slide it up, though it might come back down.)
My buckle can't slide lower. There's a black circle on the belt that prevents it from going down more.
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  #21  
Old 01-23-2005, 06:52 AM
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I've had my 04 330i for about 10 months now and it has almost 11K miles. I haven't had any problems with it except for a noisy gearbox which BMW insists is normal, it works fine but it's just a bit too noisy when the car is idling so it concerns me. If it's still noisy by 45K miles I'm going to push for a new one under warranty because I don't want to have to pay for a new one if it breaks at 50,001 miles.

As far as the rattles go, my experinence with cars is that unless you have a cushy suspension, with 14" wheels and lots of sidewall on the tires, on crappy roads every car is going to have some rattles. If the roads are smooth and you're getting rattling then it's something to look into, otherwise on bumpy, uneven roads which seem to be getting more and more prevalent in the US , then some rattling on a car with a million parts is going to be enevitable. Once you accept that fact the rattling won't bother you anymore.
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  #22  
Old 01-23-2005, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
My buckle can't slide lower. There's a black circle on the belt that prevents it from going down more.
I just put some felt on it and so far so good. The rattle coming from there has gone.
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  #23  
Old 01-23-2005, 11:35 AM
JetBlack330i JetBlack330i is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZGal
Hello All
Have had my 2005 325i for a few months now with 5000 miles on it. I am seeing a few issues.
This just started a couple of days ago.
I hear like a rattling sound from near the front door or window on the passenger side. Tried to listen hard and it seems to be coming from where the door is fixed to the car or near the windows. Its quite irritating and feel like something is loose and might fall off.
Just wanted to find out if any of you have seen any problem like this?
The noise seems to come most when the road is not smooth ( like surface roads ) and it comes even while driving and braking on bumps etc. Will be taking it to the dealer but was wondering if it was something that I could set right?

The other thing I have noticed is that if I leave the steering of the car it starts moving towards the right rather than go straight.

Apart from these I havent really had any other problems and the car is beautiful. Makes me very happy .
I know exactly what that is. It drove me crazy. Couldn't reproduce it at dealership.
It's your seat belt metal buckle hitting on the plastic trim!!!
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  #24  
Old 01-24-2005, 04:15 PM
AZGal AZGal is offline
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Solved

Hiya
Did some investigation and the rattle seemed to come from the seatbelt on the passenger side. Wow quite an irritating one. Now that I found the problem , took care of it and its gone . whew..
And the fact that the car is supposed to slide to the right is so interesting. Never thought that it was actually thought of and implemented.
I am back in the happy zone. Thanks for your replies.
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  #25  
Old 01-24-2005, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swchang
My buckle can't slide lower. There's a black circle on the belt that prevents it from going down more.
Yeah, pull it down as low as it'll go, and maybe rotate it a little so it's not perpendicular to the car's direction of travel.

Usually, it's not a problem for me, and I've only had to move it a few times. (I just reach over at a traffic light.)
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