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Old 08-12-2007, 12:30 PM   #61
NicB.
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Sevencars, you were right, the plastic vane was crooked. I could see it when I looked up from a different position. I took it off, pulled pretty hard to straighten the plastic tab, then it slid right on...no more crooked steering.

Thanks again!

NicB.

Edit: This also fixed my squeak at low speeds. still have some vibration, but think the alignment needs checked again.
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Old 08-19-2007, 01:30 PM   #62
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Same problem here... 01 330ci with 113K

When I wiggled the coupling I heard the same sound when you wiggle the steering wheel from right to left. Bought a new part, unscrewed the bolts and was fighting with the damn thing for two hours and was not able to retract the part # 1 into the steering column
I am going to my mechanic tomorrow

How you guys managed to take it out?
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Old 08-19-2007, 01:40 PM   #63
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Hey man, like said above, don't panic. What you might try is swinging your legs out under the front driver's side wheel. This should allow you to put your other arm through some suspension components and onto the other side of the coupling. Then you can have both arms pushing. You will also be in a lot better position to get some purchase on it.

As far as taking it out goes, you could try spraying some WD-40 up there or PB to loosen it up. Also, I found it was difficult to move part #1 up into the housing without pushing from the coupling. Too hard to get any real leverage on it.

Good luck man...mine drove me nuts, I almost called my mechanic too.
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Old 08-20-2007, 11:55 AM   #64
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I replaced mine over the weekend. R&R took about an hour, including getting the car on the lift. Had to remove the LF wheel only. The upper bolt can be removed with an 8mm socket (6 point) in a swivel at the end of a 8" to 10" extension. Reached in over the top of the left LCA. Lower bolt can be removed by using the same tool but reaching in under the left LCA. Also, insert and thread the bolts into the new coupling before installing. Def an improvement in driveability and stability.
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Old 08-24-2007, 07:06 PM   #65
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Well I just got this replaced and with a mechanic along with the bushings. Car feels tight but the damn wheel is crooked and I now notice a hell of a lot more vibration. I'll take it to get an alignment tomorrow. Do you think they could fix the steering wheel position as well?
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Old 08-26-2007, 09:21 AM   #66
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Tell them to double-check the position of the coupling. There is a plastic fin that aligns the coupling and if that went on crooked, it will make your wheel crooked. Read the past few posts to learn more.
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Old 08-26-2007, 03:50 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NicB. View Post
Tell them to double-check the position of the coupling. There is a plastic fin that aligns the coupling and if that went on crooked, it will make your wheel crooked. Read the past few posts to learn more.
Yeah I saw that. You think the alignment place would look at that?
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Old 08-26-2007, 10:50 PM   #68
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Maybe, but its not an alignment issue, its an issue with the coupler. By the way, for all those that have the knocking sound, you might just try tightening the upper bolt on the coupler (closest to steering wheel). I replaced my coupler and had knocking (where there wasn't any before). I checked it out this weekend and noticed that i could move the steering column in and out slightly (there is a half circle cut in the column for the screw to go through), but tightening the bolt made it so that it would no longer move and fixed the knocking sound. Phew..!
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Old 08-27-2007, 01:03 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by NicB. View Post
Maybe, but its not an alignment issue, its an issue with the coupler. By the way, for all those that have the knocking sound, you might just try tightening the upper bolt on the coupler (closest to steering wheel). I replaced my coupler and had knocking (where there wasn't any before). I checked it out this weekend and noticed that i could move the steering column in and out slightly (there is a half circle cut in the column for the screw to go through), but tightening the bolt made it so that it would no longer move and fixed the knocking sound. Phew..!
Would this be hard to do on my own? What would I need?
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Old 08-27-2007, 09:38 AM   #70
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I think it was an 8 MM socket and a small and medium sized rachet. Drive the car up on stands, take off the undercarriage dust shield, slide yourself back, unscrew the two bolts with the 8 MM, pull up on the steering rack to and the coupling should slide out, put new coupling in (be very careful when aligning it), tighten bolts down, pull on steering column to make sure there is no play. Done. Now that I have done it, it's like a 20-30 minute job. But first time around it took me like 2 hours cuz i messed it up the first time.

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Old 08-27-2007, 11:36 AM   #71
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ok i have a question i dont have a knock when i turn the wheel and my steering isnt overly sloppy but i have a bad vibration i know its not rims / tires / lca bushings / rotors im wondering could this cause my "harsh" steering?
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Old 08-27-2007, 12:04 PM   #72
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ok i have a question i dont have a knock when i turn the wheel and my steering isnt overly sloppy but i have a bad vibration i know its not rims / tires / lca bushings / rotors im wondering could this cause my "harsh" steering?
Probably not. In fact, R&R'ing the coupling would actually increase your ability to feel the vibration. This isn't your solution.
How many miles on the car? Have you tried usinf wheels/tires from another car? What kind of tires are mounted on the front wheels? How many miles on the tires? What kind of roads do you drive on? Is the vibration speed specific? Have you ruled out wheel bearings?
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Old 08-27-2007, 12:18 PM   #73
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thanks for the info there i have new rims tires my roads do blow but i havent thought about wheel bearings is there a way to check that b4 replacing?
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Old 10-19-2007, 09:32 AM   #74
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Just stumbled across this in the TIS. It's a Service Instruction on "Steering wheel torsional vibrations when braking" which calls for the replacement of what we've been calling a flexible coupling but which BMW calls an "articulated washer."

There's both an old and a new version of that washer, with the change apparently incorporated in to the cars starting with the 4/2001 production (deduced from RealOEM).

There's also mention of hydraulic piping to the steering rack that had variable orifices installed. But I'm pretty confident that note has no signifigance for almost all of us. It appears that it's an either/or choice between the variable orifice and the articulated washer. If you've got one, you won't have the other. Trying to look up the part number they give for the orifices in RealOEM comes up empty, so I'm not sure where or when they were used.
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File Type: pdf SI steering washer.pdf (179.9 KB, 1137 views)
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Old 10-19-2007, 03:18 PM   #75
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What I think the TIS document is trying to say is that if you change the coupling on a car that has an older steering rack whit these "orifices" you need to change that hydralic piping at the same time as you change the coupling.

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Old 10-19-2007, 03:35 PM   #76
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Any all-wheel xi differences for this fix?

Does anyone know if the fix for this "click/noise" issue issue would be any different on the all-wheel 325xi? (2004 to be exact).

Also, I looked and found the part here:
http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...42&hg=32&fg=30

but the cost of the coupling is radiclaly more than the 330i version ($30 vs $151), even though the picture looks the same (different part #)

Why so different $$$ for xi? I can see the part on my car and it looks the same...

Mine only clicks when turning left 2" (from dead straight) and only after driving about 20 miles. Truly does feel like its in the column "line" (either lower or upper).

PS: I too have spent mucho $$$ via dealer to try and fix this (dealer also
did some extra "past warrany work for free) now I have some extra info for them. THANKS!!!
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Old 10-20-2007, 10:58 PM   #77
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Great thread. I am in the same boat now (loose steering + knock/clunk while turning).

I took a quick look at the lower rubber coupling, and it looks/feels brand new. When I shake+twist the assembly by hand with both front wheels off, it seems like there is play coming from higher up in the steering column. This is right where the lower joint assembly meets this "cup" (#8). There is a ton of lateral play and I hope the rack is fine; I am going to take apart this lower joint assembly and try to visually inspect it even though I have no idea what I'm doing.

Warranty is up... I'm broke... time to pretend I'm a mechanic
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Old 10-21-2007, 12:33 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by vanzalone View Post
Does anyone know if the fix for this "click/noise" issue issue would be any different on the all-wheel 325xi? (2004 to be exact).

Also, I looked and found the part here:
http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...42&hg=32&fg=30

but the cost of the coupling is radiclaly more than the 330i version ($30 vs $151), even though the picture looks the same (different part #)

Why so different $$$ for xi? I can see the part on my car and it looks the same...

Mine only clicks when turning left 2" (from dead straight) and only after driving about 20 miles. Truly does feel like its in the column "line" (either lower or upper).

PS: I too have spent mucho $$$ via dealer to try and fix this (dealer also
did some extra "past warrany work for free) now I have some extra info for them. THANKS!!!
Technically, it's not applicable for cars after the 10/00 production, but prior to that there was a service bulletin issued about incorrect torque on the front sway bar mounts. Apparently the mounting bolts had paint on them and would read as fully torqued when actually still a little loose. The resulting symptom is described as "..a clunking or cracking noise from the front of the car when making turns at slow speeds."

I'd suggest checking this anyway, along with the other suspension bits, to see if anything is loose or has play in it. Has the dealer already done this, or do you have any records of what the dealer has done?
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Old 10-21-2007, 04:30 PM   #79
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Here's something people might find handy - a 10 page guide from the TIS on diagnosing steering issues
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Old 10-21-2007, 04:35 PM   #80
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nice to bring the thread back b/c i think that might be my problem. how much does it go for?
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