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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 05-11-2014, 12:17 PM   #1
Registered User
Join Date: May 2014
Location: MA
Posts: 499
My Ride: '99 S2 M3 | 5MT
Exclamation SES light on whistling urgently need help

Hey all,

This would be my second post on this issue as I have wandered through countless posts with no avail in reaching a solution

My car is a 2004 325 with 101,xxx miles on it

General description of the problem:
- Whistling noise on acceleration, varies with throttle, most noise between 2000 and ~4500 rpm
- Service engine light has gone on
- Have checked that DISA + MAF sensor are plugged in, they are
- MAF looks perfectly clean, possibly even replaced by previous owner, but have not attempted using MAF cleaner on it
- **** Bouncing idle ****
- Lower (thinner) vacuum hose to F-piece on upper intake boot is not present (previous owner was an idiot?)
- Have already replaced lower intake boot
- Upper intake boot has cracks that do not go all the way through (tested also with smoker, no leaks)
- I notice some gunk built up around the seal of the DISA valve
- Noise began almost immediately after installing CAI, service engine light went on ~1 week after installing the CAI

Could anyone diagnose this problem? The whistling is incredibly annoying and the rough bouncing idle is worrying me :/ ANY help would be greatly appreciated.


Last edited by illuminated; 05-11-2014 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 05-11-2014, 01:13 PM   #2
Registered User
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Washington (the state)
Posts: 1,689
My Ride: 2003 325xi
You have pieces of the puzzle but clearly need more info. Get the stored codes with an $80 OBDII reader. You'll need to clear them and retest for results moving forward. No one here will properly troubleshoot your car, it's your baby to do the diags. You're aware vac leak is going to be the chase or a shop visit. We can only offer guesses.

-Whistling noise on acceleration, varies with throttle, most noise between 2000 and ~4500 rpm

> Vac leak (says Captain Obvious) Use a 2-3" hose like a plastic vacuum cleaner hose. Place one end over your ear and listen for the noise source moving the other end around the engine bay. If you can hear it in the car, you can find it under the hood.

- Lower (thinner) vacuum hose to F-piece on upper intake boot is not present...

> Okay, this just doesn't make sense? Pic?

- Noise began almost immediately after installing CAI, service engine light went on...

> Could the CAI be the source of the noise where the SES is unrelated? Wrap and secure rags around that thing and see if the pitch changes?
Anything made can be made Better

Last edited by White_Knuckles; 05-12-2014 at 01:05 AM.
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Old 05-11-2014, 03:05 PM   #3
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boston
Posts: 4,971
My Ride: 2003 325xi
Remove aftermarket intake, scan and clear codes.
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acceleration, disa, leak, vacuum, whistling

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