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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 11-24-2019, 09:45 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Knocking

Hi guys
I've searched through all the posts and I have not seen my problem so I'm gonna ask.
I have a 2003 BMW 540ia m sport (yes it's a real m sport).
When I bought the car ,motor wasn't running.
Turns out the timing chain guides were completely gone.
I bought the proper tools,guides,chains , timing chain tensioner seals,oil pump and new lifters..
Got it running with No Check engine lights.
But the engine rattles like it's going to come apart for the first 3 seconds of running cold then it quiets down and sounds normal.It never happens later in the day. It's only when I start it up the next day.
I did not rebuild the vanos .
Anybody have any ideas on why I have this short but irritating noise?
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  #2  
Old 11-25-2019, 12:32 AM
Chedley Chedley is offline
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knocking or rattling for a few seconds on cold start is quiet NORMAL on the V8 M62TU engine.


Did you replace the timing chain tensionner on this engine? If not, redo it. It is a pretty easy 16 minutes job that anyone can do.
It would be good for the longevity of the timing guides, and may alleviate the cold starts knocking.
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Last edited by Chedley; 11-25-2019 at 12:39 AM.
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  #3  
Old 11-25-2019, 06:28 AM
Mr.Yuck Mr.Yuck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beam540i View Post
Hi guys
I've searched through all the posts and I have not seen my problem so I'm gonna ask.
I have a 2003 BMW 540ia m sport (yes it's a real m sport).
When I bought the car ,motor wasn't running.
Turns out the timing chain guides were completely gone.
I bought the proper tools,guides,chains , timing chain tensioner seals,oil pump and new lifters..
Got it running with No Check engine lights.
But the engine rattles like it's going to come apart for the first 3 seconds of running cold then it quiets down and sounds normal.It never happens later in the day. It's only when I start it up the next day.
I did not rebuild the vanos .
Anybody have any ideas on why I have this short but irritating noise?
these things sound terrible at 1st start up and even at low rpms. Not sure why. If any of my other cars sounded like this at start up I'd turn the key off.
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  #4  
Old 11-25-2019, 08:24 AM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Well that makes me feel a little better,yes I have already replaced the chain tensioner.
But I've spent alot of money,blood,sweat and tears on this car,I just find it hard to believe that this is what new bmws sound like on start up.
Something,somewhere is not right.it sound like a diesel starting like marbles,that's why I'm wondering if the vanos would be noisy until they filled with oil.
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  #5  
Old 11-25-2019, 08:37 AM
Mr.Yuck Mr.Yuck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beam540i View Post
Well that makes me feel a little better,yes I have already replaced the chain tensioner.
But I've spent alot of money,blood,sweat and tears on this car,I just find it hard to believe that this is what new bmws sound like on start up.
Something,somewhere is not right.it sound like a diesel starting like marbles,that's why I'm wondering if the vanos would be noisy until they filled with oil.

My 540i Sport 6 speed has 219,000 miles on it. When I bought it at 199 the guy had just replaced almost everything you could, much like you did, Still sounds like butt when you start it and the PS reservoir has a slight leak, like they all do.
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  #6  
Old 11-25-2019, 11:11 AM
edjack edjack is offline
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There are check valves in the oil galleries that can fail. JimLev knows where they are, and has pics. IIRC, it is a major job to replace them.
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  #7  
Old 11-25-2019, 04:05 PM
SamD SamD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edjack View Post
There are check valves in the oil galleries that can fail. JimLev knows where they are, and has pics. IIRC, it is a major job to replace them.
Failing check valves would explain a LOT of the rattle at startup until the oil pump gets the oil back to those areas of the motor...
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  #8  
Old 11-25-2019, 05:18 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Thanks for all the great info,I'm looking forward to hearing and learning about these check valves.
It's a possibility that debris from the plastic timing chain guides got into them making them malfunction.
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  #9  
Old 11-26-2019, 11:05 AM
haolibird haolibird is offline
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Gee...I feel better now.

Jim Lev, talk to me about the check valves again!

Lenny
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  #10  
Old 11-28-2019, 12:27 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Knocking fixed

Most of you know I have been chasing a knock and rattling in my BMW 540i m sport 4.4.
After doing the timing chain guides,tensioner and all the other stuff.
So I decided to order a vanos rebuild kit.
While waiting for the kit,I decided to get under the car and lube my steering colum knuckle.
While I was under the car I noticed my fuel line was smashed about a foot forward of my fuel filter.
I'm not sure how it ran at all.i attached a pic of the section I removed.
Any how after I made the repair I started the car up to check for leaks and noticed that 90 percent of the noises were GONE. Now I still have a slight very slight vanos knock ,but atleast its quiet enough that I can live with it.
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Last edited by Beam540i; 11-28-2019 at 12:29 PM.
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  #11  
Old 11-28-2019, 12:31 PM
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540 M-Sport 540 M-Sport is offline
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My car has 306,000 miles currently (same model as yours). I had the timing chain guides, chains, tensioners and vanos rebuilt at 263,000 miles. Since then, I only have intermittent (not every time) faint, cold start knock.
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  #12  
Old 11-28-2019, 12:56 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Nice car brother
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  #13  
Old 11-28-2019, 01:03 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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03 540i m sport 4.4

Needs a little TLC on the body but,I only paid 400.00 for the car and 600 in parts and tools to get it running.
It's only got 150,000 miles on her.
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  #14  
Old 11-28-2019, 05:43 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haolibird View Post
Gee...I feel better now.

Jim Lev, talk to me about the check valves again!

Lenny
Just saw your post. Will post pics when I get home tomorrow.

Bad vanos o-ring will cause a short knock at cold startup. Mine did it until I replaced my vanos o-rings.
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Last edited by JimLev; 11-28-2019 at 05:45 PM.
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  #15  
Old 11-29-2019, 06:27 AM
Mr.Yuck Mr.Yuck is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLev View Post
Just saw your post. Will post pics when I get home tomorrow.

Bad vanos o-ring will cause a short knock at cold startup. Mine did it until I replaced my vanos o-rings.
Is that hard? Mine makes some noise at start up
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  #16  
Old 11-29-2019, 07:27 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Yuck View Post
Is that hard? Mine makes some noise at start up
Replacing the vanos o-rings? If you've never done it before it is.
The engine needs to be timed after you mount the vanos back on to the cams.
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  #17  
Old 11-29-2019, 08:24 AM
haolibird haolibird is offline
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James,
Always Thankful for your input.

Bad VANOS o-ring?
But...but...I replaced mine!
I had a feeling I should have just got exchanges, although I was pretty sure I had done the job correctly.

BTW, still no timing codes, so I'm confidant about that job.
I really believe it was more of a timing cover misalignment than a timing chain misalignment.

Very Best,
Tom
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  #18  
Old 11-29-2019, 09:10 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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As long as you don't have any codes I wouldn't worry about the upper timing cover position.
About 5 years ago I did my guides (didn't do the vanos) and had vanos knock only when starting the cold engine. It didn't do it at every start.
The next year I did the vanos and haven't got the knock since then.

There are check valves behind the vanos solenoids, they can be pulled out using an M10 x 1.0 bolt.
If these check valves don't close when the engine is shut off oil will drain out of the solenoid and distribution unit that feed the vanos.
Also the 99tu engines didn't have a Teflon coating on the distribution cover that the 3 rings on the end of the cam seal to. If the ID of the cover is worn it will allow oil to leak by.
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  #19  
Old 11-29-2019, 09:23 AM
haolibird haolibird is offline
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Aye!

Thanks Jim.

Yeah, knocking like mad on cold start.
Warm, no problem.

I'm gonna run this car till it dies, or I die.
Not gonna open it up again.
To quote Roger Murtaugh: "I'm too old for this sh!t!".

Regards,
Tom
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Old 11-29-2019, 09:41 AM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Hi jim,these backflow valves,,are they part of the vanos solonoids?
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  #21  
Old 11-29-2019, 12:12 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beam540i View Post
Hi jim,these backflow valves,,are they part of the vanos solonoids?
No, they are behind the vanos solenoids. If you unscrew the solenoids the check valves are directly behind them. As the pic above shows you can screw in a bolt or use just about anything that will fit into the ID of the check valve to pull it out.
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Old 11-29-2019, 12:33 PM
Beam540i Beam540i is offline
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Dam it
My vanos solonoid socket wont fit completely over my solonoid.
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  #23  
Old 11-29-2019, 01:25 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Just saw your PM. I'll reply shortly.
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  #24  
Old 12-01-2019, 01:43 PM
SamD SamD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beam540i View Post
Hi jim,these backflow valves,,are they part of the vanos solonoids?
I believe these are the check-valves from FCP Euro:
https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw...ve-11121706921

Here's their location. They're parts 8 & 9 on this diagram and would be right behind the VANOS solenoids under the timing covers.
https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=11_7550
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  #25  
Old 12-01-2019, 02:16 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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^--Right, that's them. No need to replace them just clean them if they are dirty. The only rubber part is the o-ring that you can replace. The check valve and internal spring is all metal.
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