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      09-27-2011, 10:41 AM   #1
Ural
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Wind Noise and Traffic Noise

From the moment I took delivery of my X3 on 8/11 I am having this somewhat excessive wind and traffic noise. Wind noise generated by the big mirrors at speeds over 75-80 mph is to me acceptable for an SUV. My problem is, I hear noise of passing cars in town at lower speeds like 30-40 mph and wind noise starts exactly at 50 mph from both driver and passenger sides. What I hear is not something that a badly assembled sunroof or windshield produces, it's more like a systematic noise .

I took the car to the dealer for this issue. Their verdict was a predictable " Everything is normal" . After I insisted that it is not, they then offered to test drive another X3 , and yes that one had the exact same noise . I did not give up at that point either , and had them check their PUMA database for any TSBs on this. Result was none , and I had to let it go for now, but I still think this car, if not all a series of production at least, has a sound insulation problem with the doors and the windows which BMW is not accepting yet. Such a refined car does not deserve it. I would appreciate to hear if anyone else has the same feeling.

Last edited by Ural; 12-06-2011 at 10:18 AM.
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      09-27-2011, 11:09 AM   #2
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I get wind noise from the mirrors I think from around 70mph, I'll have to check what happens from 50mph. I don't notice the traffic noise. Overall I would say my E93 was quieter.
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      09-27-2011, 05:50 PM   #3
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I get the wind noise to around 65 mph. Definitly a major issue which i m sure if more people complained, eventually a TSB will be issued.
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      09-27-2011, 06:20 PM   #4
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I can understand obscure bugs making it through, but how does something obvious like wind noise at 65mph+ not get noticed by the engineers and testers?
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      09-28-2011, 05:06 AM   #5
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Clivem2 : Traffic noise becomes annoying in my car especially in busy cities i.e. when crossing the Bosphorus Bridge , many cars passing at a speed from all 3 lanes of opposite direction. I too do not notice it when highway driving or on less crowded routes. Of course there fills in the wind noise .

Dukat: I agree with you . I truly believe our X3s are by far the class leader . I really love the car, but I cannot understand how BMW let the model launch with such an obvious flaw.

Coreyn: I am checking the TSBs from a website I randomly found but proved to be generally reliable by cross-checking TSBs of my Jeep Cherokee . So far nothing about doors, windows or seals or anything related to wind noise issue. I keep logging on there and also squeezing the BMW dealer's service rep by phone to carry this as a formal complaint to Germany .

Last edited by Ural; 09-28-2011 at 05:27 AM.
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      09-28-2011, 08:14 AM   #6
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Complain to the BMW head office in your country. That, plus warranty claims is the only way that TSB, SIB, etc are issued as far as I know.
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      09-28-2011, 09:00 AM   #7
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only driven the x4 for 400 miles so far and definitely can notice the wind noise on the motorway at 70mph... can't say i was too surprised tbh judging by the size of those wing mirrors!

with the hearing of cars at lower speeds, not sure if it's me but i certainly don't notice it anymore than i did with the previous 5 series?
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      09-28-2011, 10:09 AM   #8
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There is some wind noise, and bleed-through traffic noise, but I don't find it all that bad - considering. Once had a Subaru Outback where the mirrors actually whistled at highway speed - now THAT was annoying!

I can definately tell the difference though between the X5's dead silence at any speed and condition versus the X3. But if I look at the difference is seals and insulation, there is no guess work. The X5 was engineered to be very quiet. The X3... less so.
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      09-28-2011, 10:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEDZEP View Post
There is some wind noise, and bleed-through traffic noise, but I don't find it all that bad - considering. Once had a Subaru Outback where the mirrors actually whistled at highway speed - now THAT was annoying!
I had that problem on my 05 Outback XT. Turned out it was a little sticker (part tag) in between the mirror housing and the window gusset. If you flipped the mirror housing all the way in, you could access the sticker and peel it off. Problem solved. That was a weird one.
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      09-28-2011, 03:10 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by skier219 View Post
I had that problem on my 05 Outback XT. Turned out it was a little sticker (part tag) in between the mirror housing and the window gusset. If you flipped the mirror housing all the way in, you could access the sticker and peel it off. Problem solved. That was a weird one.
That makes sense. The sound was similar to blowing on a taught blade of grass and getting that vibration whistle. A loose sticker would probably produce just such a sound.
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      09-28-2011, 03:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ural View Post
Clivem2 : Traffic noise becomes annoying in my car especially in busy cities i.e. when crossing the Bosphorus Bridge , many cars passing at a speed from all 3 lanes of opposite direction. I too do not notice it when highway driving or on less crowded routes. Of course there fills in the wind noise .

Dukat: I agree with you . I truly believe our X3s are by far the class leader . I really love the car, but I cannot understand how BMW let the model launch with such an obvious flaw.

Coreyn: I am checking the TSBs from a website I randomly found but proved to be generally reliable by cross-checking TSBs of my Jeep Cherokee . So far nothing about doors, windows or seals or anything related to wind noise issue. I keep logging on there and also squeezing the BMW dealer's service rep by phone to carry this as a formal complaint to Germany .
There were a few of us that had problems with wind noise during the first few months of 2011 production and posted about it. I had excessive wind noise from the drivers door. The noise was minimized, but never truly eliminated, when they replaced the seals on the door.
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      09-28-2011, 08:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEDZEP View Post
That makes sense. The sound was similar to blowing on a taught blade of grass and getting that vibration whistle. A loose sticker would probably produce just such a sound.
That is exactly how I would describe it. Pretty crazy.
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      09-28-2011, 08:59 PM   #13
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There was definitely a lot of wind noise on my X3 on any speeds >50 mph

And I say "there was" because sadly my X3 is in the process of being technically lemoned.
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      09-28-2011, 09:07 PM   #14
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There was definitely a lot of wind noise on my X3 on any speeds >50 mph

And I say "there was" because sadly my X3 is in the process of being technically lemoned.
What's wrong with your car?
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      09-29-2011, 08:37 AM   #15
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Quote:
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Complain to the BMW head office in your country. That, plus warranty claims is the only way that TSB, SIB, etc are issued as far as I know.
Actually, my dealer is also the main distributor of BMW in my country. That's why I am trying to make them forward my complaint to BMW Germany. Another problem is, F25 was introduced to our market last year in November, and as of August,2011 only 65 X3s were sold in the entire country (here people prefer X5s and Q7s.. oh and Cayennes ). Therefore I may be the first one complaining them about the noise in X3.
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      09-29-2011, 08:44 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alanintx View Post
There were a few of us that had problems with wind noise during the first few months of 2011 production and posted about it. I had excessive wind noise from the drivers door. The noise was minimized, but never truly eliminated, when they replaced the seals on the door.
After they replaced the seals, are you noticing anything visibly different from old seals in terms of material used and/or workmanship?
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      09-29-2011, 08:59 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LEDZEP View Post
There is some wind noise, and bleed-through traffic noise, but I don't find it all that bad - considering. Once had a Subaru Outback where the mirrors actually whistled at highway speed - now THAT was annoying!

I can definately tell the difference though between the X5's dead silence at any speed and condition versus the X3. But if I look at the difference is seals and insulation, there is no guess work. The X5 was engineered to be very quiet. The X3... less so.
I could understand being a superior class, X5 can be more silent, however comparing to some other compact SUVs (not even premium ones) I think especially the wind and traffic noise at lower speeds should have been minimized before launching the model by design and engineering, and if not, their after sales teams should be taking this as a real problem and seriously take actions.
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      09-29-2011, 09:30 AM   #18
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Quote:
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After they replaced the seals, are you noticing anything visibly different from old seals in terms of material used and/or workmanship?
The answer to your question is that I notice no difference NOW.

However, when the new seals were initially installed in March, the F25 was a brand new model and the service personnel were not familiar with the interior trim removal process. They damaged the interior door panel and installed one of the seals incorrectly.

I had some strong words with the service management and the dealership replaced the complete interior door panel and reinstalled the seal correctly.

So, nothing visibly different now, and the materials (which came from Germany), are exactly the same as the original.
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      09-30-2011, 02:00 AM   #19
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The answer to your question is that I notice no difference NOW.

However, when the new seals were initially installed in March, the F25 was a brand new model and the service personnel were not familiar with the interior trim removal process. They damaged the interior door panel and installed one of the seals incorrectly.

I had some strong words with the service management and the dealership replaced the complete interior door panel and reinstalled the seal correctly.

So, nothing visibly different now, and the materials (which came from Germany), are exactly the same as the original.

Sorry to hear about your bad experience.

The seals being the same as the original makes me think that wind noise you were having was due to a faulty installation at the factory, and lessened by reinstalling them correctly at the service, eventually. Might be the source of the issue for us as well.
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      10-03-2011, 12:49 AM   #20
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Sat in silence on the motorway earlier to listen for wind noise at 70mph and 80mph. Can't hear anything significant on mine at either speed. If you want to compare, I've attached 30 seconds of audio at each speed recorded from an iphone (you'll need QuickTime). I can only assume certain X3s have more of a problem than others or I'm going deaf!
Attached Files
File Type: zip at70.zip (237.7 KB, 286 views)
File Type: zip at80.zip (236.0 KB, 185 views)
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      10-03-2011, 10:48 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ural View Post
Sorry to hear about your bad experience.

The seals being the same as the original makes me think that wind noise you were having was due to a faulty installation at the factory, and lessened by reinstalling them correctly at the service, eventually. Might be the source of the issue for us as well.
This is was what the service management at my dealership thought. I had heard from others that replacing seals that were misaligned, due to incorrect installation, minimized their noise problems, as well.
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      10-03-2011, 12:25 PM   #22
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I have had a "Loaner" for two days, 2.0 Diesel basic model NO wind/traffic noises at any speed.
Currently giving 42MPG.
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