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In your original post you said it was a rattle/pinging sound under load. To me that sounds like the knock sensors not adjusting the timing enough to prevent detonation or pre-ignition, but I'm still very old school. Just my $.02

DING DING DING We have a winner.

Given the description of the symptom set, this car is having trouble with advanced timing -- the engine is pinging/knocking due to craptastic gas and the engine timing is not retarding as it should.

Bonus points go to the digging up of an old post.
 

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2001 330xi
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893 Posts
DING DING DING We have a winner.

Given the description of the symptom set, this car is having trouble with advanced timing -- the engine is pinging/knocking due to craptastic gas and the engine timing is not retarding as it should.

Bonus points go to the digging up of an old post.
Could this be tested by adding octane booster and seeing if it gets better?
 

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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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I have an issue with octane booster in general. There's two ways to solve ping with fuel. One is higher octane. The other is octane booster.
Beware that many of the "boosters" achieve the same net effect by slowing down the flame front propagation.

Apples and oranges. FYI
Go for the better fuel.
 

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2001 330xi
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I have an issue with octane booster in general. There's two ways to solve ping with fuel. One is higher octane. The other is octane booster.
Beware that many of the "boosters" achieve the same net effect by slowing down the flame front propagation.

Apples and oranges. FYI
Go for the better fuel.
Would we expect pinging with a top tier mid grade?

Sent from my MI 5 using Tapatalk
 

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Op, unplug the Vanos solenoid connector and try again to see if the noise gone.

You did the Vanos anti rattle; how did you set the washers and ring spacer?
 

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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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Would we expect pinging with a top tier mid grade?

Sent from my MI 5 using Tapatalk
Absolutely not. As I've stated many times, on both of my wife's E46 commuter cars we ran top tier regular (unless on a trip and the car is filled and I want to go fast) with zero issues. Yes I can hear an engine ping, I've been doing this a long time.

That's what the knock sensors are for. When working correctly, the little microphones can detect the onset of pre-ignition long before your ears.
As an example:
Regular gas might see 25° of ignition timing advance.
Premium gas might see 28° of ignition timing advance.
 

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2005 E46 325ci
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318 Posts
Discussion Starter #110
DING DING DING We have a winner.

Given the description of the symptom set, this car is having trouble with advanced timing -- the engine is pinging/knocking due to craptastic gas and the engine timing is not retarding as it should.

Bonus points go to the digging up of an old post.
I've addressed that post and as a result replaced my knock sensors and went from gas station to gas station only using the best gas I could get my hands on in Canada, yet the problem still persists.
 

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2005 E46 325ci
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Discussion Starter #111
Could this be tested by adding octane booster and seeing if it gets better?
I've also done that twice (with running 94 Chevron) and it seemed to make no difference but I'm willing to give it a go a third time and hopefully third times the charm but not holding my breathe on it.
 

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2005 E46 325ci
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Discussion Starter #113
I have an issue with octane booster in general. There's two ways to solve ping with fuel. One is higher octane. The other is octane booster.
Beware that many of the "boosters" achieve the same net effect by slowing down the flame front propagation.

Apples and oranges. FYI
Go for the better fuel.
I've already tried both options but I'm willing to give octane booster another shot with a tank of 94 chevron (which is what I usually run besides Shell 91) and see if that does anything the third time around.
Although I believe that this could be related to the oil consumption at this point as I've literally covered every other possibility at this point so my only theory at this point is that I may be galloping enough oil to lower the octane in the combustion chamber thus causing pinging.
Another alternative theory I have is that due to oil consumption my piston could have chunks of carbon deposits thus increasing compression slightly causing pinging but these are both just my theories based on my hours of research all across the web (including on here) and my discussions with BMW Master techs in my area.
I will be boroscoping my engine very soon to confirm the carbon deposits theory.
 

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2000 E46 323i, 3.0L and 2.0L Z3's
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So, by now you will know under what sort of conditions the issues occurs in. Why don't you run an OBD Fusion log under those conditions and see if you can capture the problem happening. The ignition timing data will be interesting to see. If it is pinging, then we should see a rapid adjustment of the timing.
 

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2005 E46 325ci
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Discussion Starter #115
Op, unplug the Vanos solenoid connector and try again to see if the noise gone.

You did the Vanos anti rattle; how did you set the washers and ring spacer?
Alright I'll try disconnecting it and reconnecting it and let you know how that goes. Do I do it while the engine is running or no?
Also, for the Beisan Vanos seals and anti-rattle kit replacement I actually got both done by a Bmw master tech as I didn't want to risk messing anything up with that whole job as it was a little over my pay grade. I can however reach out to that tech to see how he set the washers and ring spacers but I trust that he did it properly given his experience. Is there any particular way they're supposed to sit?

Also, I must say that the sound I'm hearing seemed to be unaffected by the Beisan Vanos rebuild.
 

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2005 E46 325ci
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Discussion Starter #116
So, by now you will know under what sort of conditions the issues occurs in. Why don't you run an OBD Fusion log under those conditions and see if you can capture the problem happening. The ignition timing data will be interesting to see. If it is pinging, then we should see a rapid adjustment of the timing.
It is quite intermittent so sometimes when I'm logging I don't hear it and then one day I won't be logging and I hear it so I will try to log everytime I drive now just so I can actually capture it as you said.
 

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Also, I must say that the sound I'm hearing seemed to be unaffected by the Beisan Vanos rebuild.
So the knock noise happened already before the vanos rebuilt? As you pointed out there is a moment the power dropped and recovered at certain rpm range. This made me think one possibility is vanos didn't adjust the cams timing properly for that moment.
If anti-rattle kit didn't set right, it might end up with too much bearing clearance then at certain rpm/timing adjustment, it can cause good oscillation/rattling, or mild knocking like.
 

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2000 E46 323i, 3.0L and 2.0L Z3's
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I have had (and fixed) very bad VANOS rattle. There was no loss of power. The rattle was very evident at idle and could be heard sitting in the car. It went away at around 1,500 to 2,000 rpm.
 

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I have had (and fixed) very bad VANOS rattle. There was no loss of power. The rattle was very evident at idle and could be heard sitting in the car. It went away at around 1,500 to 2,000 rpm.
Total agreed on this. I was more about the vanos response issue causing wrong cam timing.
 
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