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General E46 Forum
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Old 08-12-2012, 12:48 PM   #1
02gtstang
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Rattle on start up. Has new dr vanos already

I have a 2005 330 CI that has a rattle upon coldstart up. It is done it before the vinous change and after the Venice change and I'm wondering if I could have a timing chain tensioner starting to go out or the timing chain could be slapping the cover a little bit it only does it for a few seconds on start up but it worries me if something could be failing. the car only has 85,000 miles on it. It almost has a sound of that is when you change the oil on the car and it rattles for second till it builds pressure back up and I'm wondering what you all think that could possibly be thank you for any help
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Old 08-12-2012, 01:14 PM   #2
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Have you verified that the noise is coming from the VANOS/timing chain area? Sometimes starter motor gears will hang up, or it could be pulley noise.

You could find out a lot from pulling the valve cover. If you have verified that the source of the noise is under there, that would be the next step, IMO.
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:17 AM   #3
02gtstang
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I would think it wouldn't be the starter either. I had to put a new starter in it about 3 months ago
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:58 AM   #4
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What oil are you using?

You do know new vanos has a break in period, right?

The timing chain guides haven't seemed to give us any issues yet...at least, I can't recall reading of one go bad...at least not in NA engines, so I wouldn't worry about that.

The exhaust mani heat shield (riveted onto mani gasket) seems to rattle. Exhaust components might too (the front bracket seems to rust apart).

Could be pulleys beginning to complain.
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Old 08-13-2012, 06:58 AM   #5
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I have the same problem. Although mine does not seem to care if the motor is cold or at operating temp. And it is intermittent. My guess is a collapsing lifter. It only takes one or two seconds for the noise to go away and then it is quiet. Car is an 05 330I with 68K. Well maintained previously and currently.

I am fairly new to the E46 and motor issues so I am not sure what else could cause this. Has anyone had an issue with lifters on these cars?
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Old 08-13-2012, 07:13 AM   #6
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The engine seems pretty bullet proof. Well maintained is good and honestly, I think your PO would have had to have been an idiot to do something that would affect the lifters. Having the correct oil seems to help a lot of this.

Pulleys will also make raspy sounds intermittently...check belt condition and make sure the tensioners are holding belt flat between pulleys.

And to clean things up generally, Techron--the only additive my car has seen.
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:06 AM   #7
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The engine seems pretty bullet proof. Well maintained is good and honestly, I think your PO would have had to have been an idiot to do something that would affect the lifters. Having the correct oil seems to help a lot of this.

Pulleys will also make raspy sounds intermittently...check belt condition and make sure the tensioners are holding belt flat between pulleys.

And to clean things up generally, Techron--the only additive my car has seen.
I listened to the noise early this morning after getting to work. No rattle/knock on morning start up - only after sitting for an hour or so. The noise cannot be a lifter collapsing. That would be more of a tapping sound. This is more like a chain rattling until the tensioner does what it is supposed to do. Takes from 1/2 to one second for it to stop.

I will definitely check belt tensioners but is there a timing chain tensioner that could cause this? Or is this the classic Vanos rattle I hear so much about?
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Old 08-14-2012, 11:20 AM   #8
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I think it's a tensioner or idler pulley. The tensioner itself might be fine...see if the belts are running flat between pulleys. If the belt is hopping, the tensioner isn't good.

No one that I recall in an ordinary non-M, non-turbo e46 has had an issue with timing chain tensioner/guide. I'm sure someone has, but they probably have over 200K miles at least or been doing stuff to engine.

If one pulley is bad, replace all three--make sure you know what tensioners you have before you order pulleys.

GL...hth.

Oh, use a hose as stethoscope and verify the source...or remove belt and spin pulleys...if it spins freely, it's bad. It should stop in a rotation or two. Anyway, at that point, I'd just have them handy and replace them...and belts. Autozone sells dayco pulleys are are OE (INA brand) if you didn't know.

Search pulleys in thread titles...you'll find out all you need.
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Old 08-17-2012, 01:12 PM   #9
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The car has all new idler pulleys from when I did a oil filter housing gasket. it also has a brand-new water pump and belts. I'm running royal purple in the car but it's been doing it ever since I bought the car with the factory BMW oil that was in it before
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Old 08-17-2012, 01:15 PM   #10
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If it the vanos, you can put your ear to the vanos area and hear the rattles. If this doesn't help find the source, more than likely its the bearings on the pulleys.
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Old 12-28-2012, 11:54 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by 02gtstang View Post
I have a 2005 330 CI that has a rattle upon coldstart up. It is done it before the vinous change and after the Venice change and I'm wondering if I could have a timing chain tensioner starting to go out or the timing chain could be slapping the cover a little bit it only does it for a few seconds on start up but it worries me if something could be failing. the car only has 85,000 miles on it. It almost has a sound of that is when you change the oil on the car and it rattles for second till it builds pressure back up and I'm wondering what you all think that could possibly be thank you for any help
Did you ever find out what was causing your start up rattle?
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:48 PM   #12
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Take a video of the noise...

I had a start up rattle too and then eventually it just disappeared. I think mine was a exhaust problem...
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Old 12-28-2012, 12:57 PM   #13
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My car rattles for a second when i start it cold, but when its warm it doesnt. The rattle doesnt sound engine related at all so i just ignore it.
I have noticed that my header gasket flaps were moving loosely so that could be it.
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