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Old 01-02-2015, 11:58 PM   #1
engl0405
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Question Weird hissing sound from the front end

Hi,

First time posting here, so I apologize if I mess anything up or post in the wrong place .

I have an e46 325 CI manual.

I have a weird hissing sound. It's not continuous and it's frequency (not pitch) is linked directly to the speed of the car. The sound continues when the car is coasting in neutral.

Here's the weird part: The noise gets really loud, to the point you want to pull over, but then it sounds like something shifts and clicks and then it goes away on its own. (just as I was switching lanes to pull over)

I don't think it has anything to do with the engine / gearbox, since it's linked to the speed of the car, even when in neutral.
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Old 01-03-2015, 03:02 AM   #2
BMWfan07
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Probably an air leak somewhere? such as vacuum hose.
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Old 01-03-2015, 03:37 AM   #3
engl0405
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Hi @BMWfan07, I know what you mean, but it's more like a metal on metal or something on metal. It's tied to the speed of the wheels, I read somewhere that it may be a little stone getting in between the brake disk and the brake shield, so I will check that out.

Thanks for the reply
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Old 01-03-2015, 06:19 AM   #4
CheapDailyDriver
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Could be one of your pulley bearings.
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Old 01-03-2015, 07:35 AM   #5
engl0405
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@CheapDailyDriver, thanks for the suggestion. I just replaced all of them. It's not engine related. The noise changes with coasting speed, even when the engine is idling (If I put the transmission in neutral on an off ramp I can hear the noise change). It seems to be coming from the wheels. It is a metallic grinding of sorts, as if something is rubbing against a piece of metal, then something clicks a few times as if it clicks into place then the noise goes away.

I will investigate further and post my findings and a recording of the noise if I can catch it.
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Old 01-03-2015, 09:26 AM   #6
CheapDailyDriver
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That needs a little more investigating. Could be a caliper valve sticking or a loose pad or even a brake sensor. Does applying the brakes when coasting do anything to change the noise?

Last edited by CheapDailyDriver; 01-03-2015 at 09:26 AM.
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Old 01-03-2015, 10:30 AM   #7
engl0405
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Post Audio Recording of the noise

I was finally able to get the recordings off my phone and upload them.

https://soundcloud.com/engl0405/sets/e46-unknown-noise

They are both linked to the same sound (the volume is a bit weird).
The second one has a distinct click at the end where the noise just goes away.

The phone was on the passenger side on the floor.

The kind of clicking hints at the guibo, though the sound is more of a friction sound than a clicking sound.
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Old 01-20-2015, 06:49 PM   #8
engl0405
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Ok, so it turns out the sound was coming from my rear end. One of the springs holding in my parking break had gone through a rotted out dust shield and was flying around inside there. The constant hissing was coming from the parking break pad which was grinding against the inside of the disk's drum. The random rattle was caused by the spring sometimes getting caught in-between and then shifting in a place where it wasn't touching the rotating drum. A common solution is to weld that little spring against the dust shield.

I just replaced it, since I had to replace the bearings anyways.
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