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HELP! Just bought my first E30 what the hell is all the noise???

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  • HELP! Just bought my first E30 what the hell is all the noise???

    Just bought an 88' M3 from member "1fastcosmo" in Tulsa OK, and had it shipped to me in Nashville. Since getting the car 3 weeks ago I had replaced some parts, and done some work which includes:

    -Cool temp sensor
    -O2 sensor
    -New Bosch plugs
    -Air filter
    -New in-tank fuel pump
    -New fuel filter
    -put good trans in it (2nd gear synchro out on trans that came in it)
    -Oil change

    Ever since I got the car, it has had some pretty good "rattle" sound all through the rev range. Sometimes at start-up it sounds REALLY loud, like there is no oil in the car, but quiets down after a few seconds. Driving home last night on i-65 I noticed a new noise. There seems to be a knocking sound. It is fairly sporadic, and can't be heard at idle, but if you rev the car up you can hear it at around 2000-2500 rpms. :/ I babied it all the way home and have now parked it. I'm affraid to drive it because I don't want to blow the motor.....any ideas? I am new to the S14 motor so I have know idea what I am hearing.

    Oh, also it doesn't seem to have all the power it should at WOT. I noticed that the barometric pressure sensor is connected, but it being held to gether by zip-tires and copper wire :/...didn't think much of it until I read a thread discussing taking it off. I live maybe 100ft above sea level, so I think I may unplug it for know...but first I need to get her running right. Any advice???
    Last edited by evanlomas; 07-10-2010, 03:56 AM.

  • #2
    I would have it checked by a mechanic who knows these s14's. I bought the roller from 1fastcosmo. lol. Drama....


    • #3
      The noise you hear at start up is your timing chain tensioner. A common replacement is the e36 tensioner. You can find info on it by doing a search. As for the knocking sound IDK, maybe someone else can chime in.


      • #4
        sorry to sound so negative.......but could be a spun rod bearing. you'll know the more you drive'll slowly progress louder.


        • #5
          Sooo...if it's a rod bearing, what am I looking at for replacement cost?? Ballpark of course. I'm assuming that's fairlt labor intensive...ouch


          • #6
            Could indeed be a spun rod be safe and end the guessing, you "really need" to take it to a BMW mechanic who knows these engines. I'd recommend contacting a good Certified Independent BMW Shop (should be less costly than a dealer & will likely have an old school mechanic).

            Hopefully you haven't purchased a "money pit" engine rebuild could easily cost more than you probably paid for the car!

            Good Luck!



            • #7
              The seller did not disclose this noise to you?


              • #8

                The rattle is more than likely coming from the timing chain tensioner! The tensioner is located on the passenger side of the engine just near the header. Makes sure itís not loose. I found mine was loose and leaking. Also how many miles are on the engine?? Secondly if you spun a rod bearing I would say it would be a consistent knocking sound not sporadic. If youíre mechanically inclined you can remove the lower and upper oil pan and check the rod bearings yourself or take it to a reputable shop with experience with S14ís. I hope its nothing big and just an easy fix. Keep us informed.



                • #9
                  Sounds like rod a bearing to me too. Either way when purchasing a used m3 with no history it's cheap insurance to change them. Plus I bet the pan gaskets are leaking anyway. Nice fun messy weekend job.

                  Originally posted by drinaldis
                  I dated a girl who used to do the reverse grind. I kinda liked it.


                  • #10
                    Thanks for all the input guys. I really appreciate it. There is a place here in Nashville called Tree House Racing that I have heard good things about. Apparently they have a guy there who know's these S14's very well. Now in reference to the timing chain tensioner, would I want to go specifically with an E36 M3 tensioner, or would any e36 tensioner do the job?

                    Also, I feel very comforatble saying that I am nowhere near qualified to replace my own rod bearings...anybody have an idea what kind of labor time is in envolved and what kind of bill I might be looking at through an independent shop?

                    Oh and I do have a stack of receipts going back to 95 on the car. It appears that it was fairly well taken care of, but wasn't driven much in the last few years. ....and no, no end noise was disclosed by the seller. It was in much rougher shape than described when I got the car. Came in with a flat tire, no brake lights, many pieces missing, things unhooked, no spare, etc, etc, but for what it's worth he's sending me a spare wheel/tire and the three missing center caps.
                    Last edited by evanlomas; 07-10-2010, 06:22 AM.


                    • #11
                      I agree with what people have posted. I'm surprised at how calm you are. I'd be pretty pissed if the car was delivered in that condition AND had these engine issues right off the bat. You didn't inspect the car prior to buying?

                      88 M3 - LACHSSILBER/M TECH
                      89 M3 - ALPINEWEISS II/SCHWARZ
                      85 323I S52 - ALPINEWEISS/SCHWARZ
                      91 M TECHNIC TURBO - MACAOBLAU/M TECH


                      • #12
               I guess I'm so calm because there isn't much I can do now, except sink a a little money into it. I wasn't expecting this, but I have put 500mi on the car before this noise started up so we'll see. I'm going to have it towed to the shop on monday and get a proper diagnosis...wish I had a little more money to spend on it right now though :/ I saw that the rod bearing set isn't too terribly expensive. What else do I need, parts wise? Upper and lower oil pan gaskets I'm sure, but anything besides that? Just hoping it's not in need of thousands worth of work...

                        Thanks for all your help!
                        Last edited by evanlomas; 07-10-2010, 08:39 AM.


                        • #13
                          Sorry to hear of this, but it's good to hear you're able to take action on the problem.

                          Best of luck!
                          I spend all my money on beer, cars, guitars, and women....the rest is just wasted.


                          • #14

                            Here we go again
                            91 M3 AW 2.5 CR Dogleg
                            88 M3 AW Track Car s54
                            95 525 Touring M52 Turbo
                            04 Toyota Tundra


                            • #15
                              I'm really sick of hearing about this 1fastcosmo guy. Seems every time someone gets scammed in here the guy is involved. Didn't he steal from a bunch of people a couple years ago then he resurfaces again?? Come on it's time for a definite ban.