Question about 2004 BMW 3 Series

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Grinding or humming noise from X3

Car has been terribly noisy. The dealer suggested I change tires. I did, the noise is unabated. A tire shop suggested it is a front right wheel bearing problem (80%) but a 20% chance it is the font left WB! How can I be sure it is before I spend $700 or more on this problem?

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  • nabilelias Oct 03, 2009

    I am told that for the X3 you need an assembly unit and the part is expensive and labor intensive. The cheapest estimate I got (out of 10) is $450 and I am not sure if it is made by the original equipment manufacturer.

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Jack up the front of the car with both front wheels off the ground. Now spin each wheel as hard as you can and listen carefully. You should be able to hear the one with a bad bearing. If that does not work, Drive down a 4 lane road where there is no traffic at about 45 mph. Now swerve to the left to unload the left front bearing. If the noise goes away the problem is the left front wheel bearing. If not the problem is with the right front wheel bearing. It should not cost $700 to replace a wheel bearing. The tire shop should be able to spin the tire on the car and determine if the bearing is bad and which one. Maybe you need to go to another shop that can determine 100% which side is bad before spending that kind of money on a $200 repair.

Posted on Oct 03, 2009

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Raise the car on that side grab the tire and see if has any( play) moves from side to side considerably.

Posted on Oct 03, 2009

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