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Thread: engine clatter at idle after warmup

  1. #1

    Default engine clatter at idle after warmup

    My 99 540i with 166,000 miles began making a clatter sound at idle after warmup. When engine first starts cold the sound seems normal. When warm and clattering at idle, the clatter sound is not noticeable at higher rpm. The sound comes from the right front of the engine. What could be the source?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Japan
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    9,110

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    top or bottom of the engine, right side from driving direction there is the timing chain tensioner https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=11_7556
    or one of the pulleys in front of the engine from the belt tensioners? https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/par...BMW-540i&mg=11
    get a cheap mechanics stethoscope, with that it is much easier to find the source of the noise, costs abt $10

  3. #3

    Default engine clatter

    Quote Originally Posted by shogun View Post
    top or bottom of the engine, right side from driving direction there is the timing chain tensioner https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/sho...diagId=11_7556
    or one of the pulleys in front of the engine from the belt tensioners? https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/par...BMW-540i&mg=11
    get a cheap mechanics stethoscope, with that it is much easier to find the source of the noise, costs abt $10
    Hi - thanks for the reply. clatter if from the right front of the engine.. I suspected the tensioner and was going to remove it to see its condition.. but I don't see how I can get access to remove it directly, even after removing air cleaner unit. I saw a youtube video to do that but it was a 6 cylinder.. I have the V-8. What may I have to remove to get access?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    Eastern Tennessee USi
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    14,704

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    Remove the fan shroud, then loosen the tensioner and remove the first belt and check for the noise. If you can't get enough access that way then remove the fan. Pretty sure you can do that without removing the fan tho. Don't run it too long cause the water pump isn't working. If the noise is still there then go to the next belt and tensioner for the AC unit. Spin the idler by hand and feel for smoothness, you got this right? If the idler feels smooth check the pulleys for alternator and water pump etc etc.

    If the noise remains I would next assume your oil pump bolts are mostly in the bottom of the oil pan. Get a lower pan gasket and get to work, also tighten the chain a bit. This is in no way rocket science and can be done on ramps. Every single V8 I have checked have bolts in the pan. My current 530 only had 2 bolts in the pan but all the rest were loose. I had no noise or issues, it's just a thing I check.

    Edit: you can clean and loctite the pump bolts and holes or just tighten them and hope you don't over torque them. I usually do the loctite thing.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
    Last edited by 632 Regal; Yesterday at 08:48 PM.
    95 E34 530I V2.34
    ===========
    Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.

    John F. Kennedy

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