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      02-15-2018, 06:10 AM   #1
pHiLix
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Steering rack - is there a permanent fix?

Hi all,

Unfortunately the drivers front side is knocking on my 2013 320i. Itís not that bad though, and could live with it if it doesnít get any worse.

Question is, have BMW found a permanent fix? Majority of the threads I read people say the sound comes back not long after they have the rack replaced.

I bought my car from an independent dealer and have 3 months statutory warranty. Iím trying to decide whether to bring it in for them to look at and try to fix, or leave as it. My concern is if there is no permanent fix and I get the rack changed, it might end up being the same or worse. Being a independent dealer, theyíll most likely use second hand parts for repair, so it might continue to knock if changed.

Let us know if there are any of you that have managed to fix the knocking coming from the front right suspension for good.

Thanks very much.
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      02-15-2018, 06:30 AM   #2
J306TD
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Will require a new rack fitting. Doubt your garage will be able to do it as requires coding to the car.

These racks have been changed about 5 times since your car was made. Latest being EO last year if LHD or start of this year if RHD.

I had mine changed by BMW in November. Cost about £300 as done under goodwill including diagnostic time.
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      02-15-2018, 06:36 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J306TD View Post
Will require a new rack fitting. Doubt your garage will be able to do it as requires coding to the car.

These racks have been changed about 5 times since your car was made. Latest being EO last year if LHD or start of this year if RHD.

I had mine changed by BMW in November. Cost about £300 as done under goodwill including diagnostic time.
So are you saying only a BMW dealer can change out the rack? What kind of coding is involved?

Have you heard any knocking since November? How many kilometres/miles have you done since?
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      02-15-2018, 06:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pHiLix View Post
So are you saying only a BMW dealer can change out the rack? What kind of coding is involved?

Have you heard any knocking since November? How many kilometres/miles have you done since?
They have to code the steering angle sensor not sure if there is another.

At least 3k miles. No noise has returned on mine.

If you have a search on google for BMW F30 Steering Knock its a very common issue
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      02-15-2018, 03:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J306TD View Post
They have to code the steering angle sensor not sure if there is another.

At least 3k miles. No noise has returned on mine.

If you have a search on google for BMW F30 Steering Knock its a very common issue
Yes Iím aware itís an extremely common issue and have done plenty of research on it, but was wondering if BMW have actually found a permanent fix for the issue, rather than a temporary fix where the sound goes away for a couple of months then comes back.
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      02-15-2018, 04:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pHiLix View Post
Yes Iím aware itís an extremely common issue and have done plenty of research on it, but was wondering if BMW have actually found a permanent fix for the issue, rather than a temporary fix where the sound goes away for a couple of months then comes back.
The latest version they hope has eradicated the issue. The area where the knock comes from has had the internal component redesigned
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      06-17-2018, 06:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J306TD View Post
Will require a new rack fitting. Doubt your garage will be able to do it as requires coding to the car.

These racks have been changed about 5 times since your car was made. Latest being EO last year if LHD or start of this year if RHD.

I had mine changed by BMW in November. Cost about £300 as done under goodwill including diagnostic time.
J306TD - Can I ask how you were able to get such a great goodwill deal (and perhaps from where)? I have this issue and am two years out of warranty, but am looking for the best strategy to go to my dealership with, such that I can avoid a repair bill costing several thousand!!

Many thanks
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      06-17-2018, 07:37 PM   #8
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I have been advised that it is by design , i was given a report that this has been checked and diagnosed by BMW with a Print our of the design it self .

they advised that this should suffice any concerns and give me peace of mind , so i am assuming that this is something one has to live with . for me sound is annoying but not bad and only happens sometime . a lot less in sport mode which is my 80% driving .
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      06-18-2018, 03:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esi183 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by J306TD View Post
Will require a new rack fitting. Doubt your garage will be able to do it as requires coding to the car.

These racks have been changed about 5 times since your car was made. Latest being EO last year if LHD or start of this year if RHD.

I had mine changed by BMW in November. Cost about £300 as done under goodwill including diagnostic time.
J306TD - Can I ask how you were able to get such a great goodwill deal (and perhaps from where)? I have this issue and am two years out of warranty, but am looking for the best strategy to go to my dealership with, such that I can avoid a repair bill costing several thousand!!

Many thanks
I took the car to my local garage at first thinking it was suspension bush. But they diagnosed as faulty rack. So went to my local dealer who also checked and agreed the rack was at fault. Car has full BMW SH so they claimed for goodwill.

There is no harm in giving it a go as you have nothing to loose well apart from 1 hour Labour but can be found in 15 mins
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      06-18-2018, 03:26 AM   #10
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Just went through this myself....

http://f30.bimmerpost.com/forums/sho....php?t=1490886
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      06-18-2018, 12:44 PM   #11
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Unfortunately I have no FBMWSH - is it even worth going to BMW about this ?

What are the chances I can get any sort of good will on a 90k mile car (I'm sure the problem was there for years, but the previous owner never bothered looking into it) ?

Thanks
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      06-18-2018, 05:21 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esi183 View Post
Unfortunately I have no FBMWSH - is it even worth going to BMW about this ?

What are the chances I can get any sort of good will on a 90k mile car (I'm sure the problem was there for years, but the previous owner never bothered looking into it) ?

Thanks

like I said no harm in trying
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      02-21-2019, 12:44 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pHiLix View Post
Hi all,

Unfortunately the drivers front side is knocking on my 2013 320i. It’s not that bad though, and could live with it if it doesn’t get any worse.

Question is, have BMW found a permanent fix? Majority of the threads I read people say the sound comes back not long after they have the rack replaced.

I bought my car from an independent dealer and have 3 months statutory warranty. I’m trying to decide whether to bring it in for them to look at and try to fix, or leave as it. My concern is if there is no permanent fix and I get the rack changed, it might end up being the same or worse. Being a independent dealer, they’ll most likely use second hand parts for repair, so it might continue to knock if changed.

Let us know if there are any of you that have managed to fix the knocking coming from the front right suspension for good.

Thanks very much.

Hello everyone.
I have an F30 320D 2012 model. I had this clunk sound coming from the right side (driver side) 2 years into owning the car. After reading all the forums as with many others, the suspicion was the steering rack issue. I managed to get it replaced under warranty. The sound was gone.

2 years later this clunk/click sound came back. By this time my warranty was over. I decided to leave it as that as I knew that replacing it was just a temporary fix since it was reported by many others that the problem will come back again. Sadly the sound got worse over time to the point it sounded like the whole steering rack was loose. But I somehow I couldn't come to terms that it was the steering rack that caused such a bad sound as the turning of my steering felt smooth and very normal. I didn't have the click sound when turning the steering left and right.

I decided to go to the workshop to check the suspension system but all the workshops concluded that my suspension, bush and shocks were fine. The way they checked it was simply by eyeballing as well as shoving a crowbar and seeing whether there was any movement in the Bush and ball joints. Nothing. None of them suggested tightening any nuts and bolts at this time.

Time went by and I continued to try to pinpoint where this noise was really coming from to no avail. Since it was about time to change the shocks I decided maybe this will help me figure out whether it was a shock or strut mount issue. All was replaced and I even changed the springs. (Bilstein B12 pro kit). The ride and handling improved a lot. The rattle and clunk seemed to have reduced a lot. But after a week the rattle and clunk was still there. Next, I decided to change the lower control arm as I felt the sound was like a ball joint rattling and was not the kind of sound from a worn bush. Again the rattle reduce a bit more but there was still a rattle somewhere. Long story short one by one I ended up changing all the links and arms, and even the dry shaft (it did need replacement). My hypothesis was that worn joints here and there little by little could have cumulatively caused the rattle to be more pronounce. The sound did seem to reduce significantly anyways with every change so to me it there was at least an improvement. This was the only way for me to go about it I.e. bit by bit.

This process took me a year until sometime in December 2018, I found out about the steering rack repair kit. I ordered it and got it installed and it seems to have worked! The sound was completely gone but alas it came back after a day! Again somehow the sound seemed like it was still the steering rack issue and many workshops concluded that the best and last choice is to just get the darn thing replaced. But this really didn't make sense to me as it only seemed as temporary fix. After more scrutiny of trying to listen where the sound was really coming from. (I just got people to sit in the car and try to agree was it from the right rear or front. It was really hard to say). Sometimes it would sound like a rattle from the rear and other times it sound like the front.

Finally I decided to send the car back to the workshop to give a check to all the shocks again to be sure as well as tighten all the nuts under the carriage including the steering rack mounting nuts. I tested it and again it seems to have reduced the sound. I did notice one of the lower sway arm nut could be tightened a full turn. My conclusion was it contributed to movement and hence allowed the rattles somewhere else. So next was to check the shocks/strut mounting again. Aha! By chance we decided to push and pull on the tire and we could hear a click and visually we also saw the whole strut move. Opened and checked the top mount and noticed something amiss. The strut mount could be easily turned without the strut following. This indicated that the screw was lose. Opened up the screw and found that the thread on the strut had worn out and as such the nut was lose. I suspect this was an installation issue. The advise was to replace the whole strut.

Interestingly the workshop suggested putting a washer in hope that this may minimise the movement. Put everything back together and it worked! The strut was rigid. Drove a bit and the sound was vastly gone from the front. But there still seemed to be a rattle. This time we could clearly hear that it was coming from the back. By this time the workshop guy suspected that first and foremost it could he the locking mechanism of the rear bonnet. His idea was to wrap some electric tape over the metal latch. This made the latch rather tight when closing. And it worked! I am happy to report that all the sound is gone and my BMW ride is quiet and firm. It's so satisfying to have finally solved all the noises that many had gaveup and concluded as coming from the steering rack. I'm sorry that this is a very lengthy response but I felt it would be useful to share to others to see what I had to go through before finally solving the clunking noises and the lessons and observations as from my own search on Google I could not find one single article or sharing that finally resolved the noise for me without jumping straight to replacing the steering rack. Happy ride all!

Last edited by ally73; 02-21-2019 at 12:53 AM..
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      02-21-2019, 10:55 PM   #14
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Can you please Post some Pictures as well to help out everyone ......
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      02-23-2019, 09:49 AM   #15
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Here are the pictures of the original part that was from the steering rack and the new repair kit which has an updated design. I had it installed in January this year and it's been great so far. No sound coming from the steering rack.
Attached Images
  

Last edited by ally73; 03-07-2019 at 07:53 AM..
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      02-23-2019, 09:54 AM   #16
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And this was the worn down strut thread which had been the culprit for the other rattling noises that had been originally thought to have been from the steering rack as from the cabin in sounded like it originated at the steering rack.
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      02-23-2019, 10:12 AM   #17
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How did it get damaged that way? Are you lowered? Was something loose?
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      02-24-2019, 05:04 PM   #18
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seems like the kit would be a good option and at the same time check struts. can you please point towards procurement of the kit ?

Also thank you for Writing a detailed findings.
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      02-26-2019, 07:34 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obert View Post
How did it get damaged that way? Are you lowered? Was something loose?
I suspect it was not properly installed.
My left hand side strut was fine.
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      02-26-2019, 07:37 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chet82 View Post
seems like the kit would be a good option and at the same time check struts. can you please point towards procurement of the kit ?

Also thank you for Writing a detailed findings.
You can order the repair kit from BMW.
Just tell them that you are looking for the F30 steering rack repair kit.

They released a bulletin on it as a fix for the noises instead of resorting to replacing the whole rack as the first choice. See attached. It cost around Ringgit Msia $125 just for the part. Labour was around RM$280
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Last edited by ally73; 02-26-2019 at 07:45 PM..
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      03-09-2019, 05:11 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ally73 View Post
Here are the pictures of the original part that was from the steering rack and the new repair kit which has an updated design. I had it installed in January this year and it's been great so far. No sound coming from the steering rack.
Hi, I've heard of this fix but I couldn't find any place to order the part.
Also would a independent garage know what I'm talking about if I turn up with the car and this part?
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      03-19-2019, 10:10 AM   #22
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I have just ordered this part from BMW €35 will have it tomorrow. They did not have the tool to install it so going to make one myself will let you know how i get on.
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