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Norseman

wind noise ?

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Hi folks

Our '98 523i sedan, owned for 5 months now, is a typical quiet BM at speed apart from what can best be described as a 'loud whisper' coming from the front of the car & I'm thinking maybe air is entering the cabin. There's no sensation of a draught even at legal limit speeds & adjusting the heating/ventilation controls doesn't make any difference. Maybe those of you that have been E39 owners for a while & know the cars better than I do could suggest any likely causes?

Many thanks.

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9 hours ago, Norseman said:

Hi folks

Our '98 523i sedan, owned for 5 months now, is a typical quiet BM at speed apart from what can best be described as a 'loud whisper' coming from the front of the car & I'm thinking maybe air is entering the cabin. There's no sensation of a draught even at legal limit speeds & adjusting the heating/ventilation controls doesn't make any difference. Maybe those of you that have been E39 owners for a while & know the cars better than I do could suggest any likely causes?

Many thanks.

 

Are the pollen filters seated correctly (each corner of the engine bay under the black covers)?

 

Could it be the air pump that you're hearing on the cold start? Maybe the viscous fan?

 

If you're car is running fine and there are no issues/no warning lights; I'd say you'll be fine :) 

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Pollen filters appear to be correctly fitted, thanks for the advice.

Don't think either of your alternative suggestions are likely, the sound definitely sounds like wind noise … even the weather (ie still air or head wind) can make a difference to the volume.

I'd try some form of sealant, if only I could sus. exactly where the sound comes from :unsure:

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Could be many different things, but has it had a new windscreen recently? I ask because if it has, windscreen fitters need to follow a fairly precise procedure, carefully documented in the BMW TIS, when fitting a new screen in order to avoid creating the wind noise issue on an E39.

 

When I had a new windscreen fitted to my M5 I provided the fitter with the printed TIS document. I thought he might be a knob about it "telling me how to do my job" etc etc but he was quite grateful, did a great job fitting the screen and asked if he could keep the document, so proper professional (always learning etc.).

 

Edit. (BMW E39 windscreen replacement TIS for those interested):-

 

R&R Windscreen.pdf

Edited by DepthHoar

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Having bought the car from an independent dealer five months ago I've no idea about the 'screen. Thank you for both for your reply & the TIS link which I'll certainly store for future reference.

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Have a look at the scuttle panel too. If that's perished it'll be letting noise in around the base of the windscreen 

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5 hours ago, d_a_n1979 said:

Have a look at the scuttle panel too. If that's perished it'll be letting noise in around the base of the windscreen 

 

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll take a look over the weekend.

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19 hours ago, DepthHoar said:

Could be many different things, but has it had a new windscreen recently? I ask because if it has, windscreen fitters need to follow a fairly precise procedure, carefully documented in the BMW TIS, when fitting a new screen in order to avoid creating the wind noise issue on an E39.

 

When I had a new windscreen fitted to my M5 I provided the fitter with the printed TIS document. I thought he might be a knob about it "telling me how to do my job" etc etc but he was quite grateful, did a great job fitting the screen and asked if he could keep the document, so proper professional (always learning etc.).

 

Edit. (BMW E39 windscreen replacement TIS for those interested):-

 

R&R Windscreen.pdf

Depthoar

Do we know if there is anything that can be done if the windscreen has not been fitted in accordance with the TIS.  Other than getting it taken out and put back in.

Many of our cars, mine included, will have had replacement windscreens over the years put in by people like autoglass given the age of the cars.

It seems the critical things are spacers and how the beading is applied.  That and removing/repairing rust which I doubt the windscreen places do given they have limited time.

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I had a whistling years ago after having a windscreen replaced on one of my E39's years ago, turns out it hadn't been sealed properly around the top and had to be redone. The garage insisted - in order - that I was imagining it and there was no whistling, then later that any whistling I could hear must have always been there, and then that it's normal and they all do that all the time. 

 

I ended up having to prove the point by taping around the outside edges of the windscreen, taking one of their guys out for a quick A-road blat, then pulling over and removing the tape for the same fast road drive back, making it instantly apparent that something was not right.

 

Unsightly as it is, maybe use the same method to rule out windscreen seal? Tape around the exterior edge of your windscreen and take a quick test drive, see if whistling stops, and if so, remove section at a time to see if you can narrow it down to a certain area. If so, then there MAY be a gap in the seal which you could locate beneath the windscreen surround trim, seal, and then conceal again under the trim. If it turns out not to be windscreen though, at least you've ruled that out?

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2 hours ago, Pzero said:

Unsightly as it is, maybe use the same method to rule out windscreen seal? Tape around the exterior edge of your windscreen and take a quick test drive, see if whistling stops, and if so, remove section at a time to see if you can narrow it down to a certain area. If so, then there MAY be a gap in the seal which you could locate beneath the windscreen surround trim, seal, and then conceal again under the trim. If it turns out not to be windscreen though, at least you've ruled that out?

 

Now that's a good idea :wink:  Especially the latter advice about removing the tape bit at a time.

Your reply is appreciated, as are all others.

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On 12/10/2019 at 09:05, Dbcrd said:

Depthoar

Do we know if there is anything that can be done if the windscreen has not been fitted in accordance with the TIS.  Other than getting it taken out and put back in.

Many of our cars, mine included, will have had replacement windscreens over the years put in by people like autoglass given the age of the cars.

It seems the critical things are spacers and how the beading is applied.  That and removing/repairing rust which I doubt the windscreen places do given they have limited time.

 

You could stick tape around the screen as has been suggested in another post but if you want the clean factory-original look you're almost certainly looking at removing the screen and starting again. There's not much that can be retrospectively fitted/adjusted.

 

If you look at the TIS you'll see that the screen has to be pre-tensioned first using foam blocks of particular dimensions. Then there's the offset at the top of the screen which has very little dimensionsal tolerance. Add to that the installation of foam tape, rubber buffers and glue in very specific locations & dimensions.

 

Re. rust repair.

My M5 has a minor rust blemish in the area at the base of the screen covered by glue. I was allowed about 10 minutes to descale, prime and protect the repair before the window tech wanted to crack on and fit the screen. Fair enough, he's got a screen to fit and bodywork isn't his gig. Luckily the screen was fitted at home where I had the wherewithal to do the simple bodywork prep and heat gun to dry everything so that the glue could go on top of it all. Ideally, the screen would come out whilst the car was under cover, carry out the bodywork repair and allowed to dry overnight, with the screen fitted the following day. I'm not 100% confident of my rust repair (even though it was tiny) and am sure it will need to be done properly......some time, sooner or later.

 

Windscreen replacement Top Tip:

If you still have the original screen in your car (it will have the BMW logo on it) and it needs replacement then insist they replace it with another BMW OE screen (from a BMW dealer). I was given the run around by the glass fitting company to start with....'the aftermarket screen is just as good as BMW OE', and, 'we only fit aftermarket screens'.... 'our replacement screens are actually better than BMW OE' (that last one cracked me up!)....'they all come from the same factory in Turkey anyway'. I resorted to speaking directly to my insurance company and informed them that since the damaged screen in my car is BMW OE then I want an actual OE replacement, like for like.  BMW keep a wide and deep back catalogue of parts for our cars so OE screens are still available (or were when my screen was fitted a year or so ago). I eventually won the argument but my particular insurer is known to be pretty good and co-operative when settling claims. Yours may not be and maybe has you tied up in small print exclusions. If your screen has been replaced before with an aftermarket one and needs changing again, then you'll be in a weaker position to demand OE.

There's was a long thread on Pistonheads about the quality of OE and aftermarket windscreens led by username Glassman, an independent glass fitter who does a lot of high end work. Glassman is aka Glasstec Paul and has a revealing personal blog posting on this issue:

http://www.glasstecpaul.com/dealer-part-windscreens/

Edited by DepthHoar

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Very interesting advice, thank you. My own screen doesn't have the BM symbol, being a 21 year-old car it's probably had more than one replacement 'screen.

It would appear the sound is coming from the top of the screen so the tape method of detection sounds promising, quite where I go once the fault is identified is unclear, but one step at a time. 

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