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Old 06-15-2017, 03:52 PM   #1
wc123wc
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E39 530i front end clunk



I have a 2003 530i sport; it's my 3rd E39 and I L.O.V.E it!
It drives really well and the suspension is tight as I changed almost all rods/arms/links in the front end in the last 2-3 years.

But it has one problem that is driving me crazy: a front end clunk over uneven surface (potholes, etc). It sounds like a loose change rattle. (FYI, my previous 525i and 530i also had the same noise.)

In the winter is not a big deal because I close the windows and I don't hear it; in the summer it drives me crazy!

Today I came across this link and I thought "Interesting...what's the knuckle / spindle / carrier?"
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=604481

When I see my mechanic next time I will ask him about it, but I am wondering if anyone had a similar problem fixed by replacing the knuckle/spindle/carrier? Is it a costly fix?

Thanks for your helpful feedback in advance!
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Old 06-18-2017, 10:47 PM   #2
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The "carrier" or spindle is just a chunk of aluminum, it holds the wheel bearing and attaches to the control arms and tie rod ends. It has NO moving parts whatsoever, and can not make any noise. I guarantee this is not the problem.
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Old 06-19-2017, 09:15 AM   #3
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Thanks for the information. They were saying there's a sleeve or something that can fall out when changing rod/links/bars, etc. Something called "LCA knuckle metal sleeve".

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The "carrier" or spindle is just a chunk of aluminum, it holds the wheel bearing and attaches to the control arms and tie rod ends. It has NO moving parts whatsoever, and can not make any noise. I guarantee this is not the problem.
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Old 06-19-2017, 11:11 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by wc123wc View Post
Thanks for the information. They were saying there's a sleeve or something that can fall out when changing rod/links/bars, etc. Something called "LCA knuckle metal sleeve".
If any of the sleeves are missing;
A. The mechanic who put it together is a criminal
B. You would have inches of free play in steering.
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Old 06-20-2017, 10:36 AM   #5
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Ok, it can't be the sleeve then. Thanks for the info.

I am just trying to figure out where this front end noise is coming from.
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Old 06-21-2017, 07:03 AM   #6
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Does the clunk go away when the brake is applied?
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Old 06-21-2017, 02:32 PM   #7
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No, it's still there even when I brake.

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Does the clunk go away when the brake is applied?
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Old 06-23-2017, 02:39 PM   #8
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Basically there is more than one type of noise all coming from the front of the car...I guess it comes with the age of the car.

1) Whooshing sound from going over bumps. I guess the damper are old?
2) Cracking noise at sharp steering at low speed.
3) Clicking noise after a quick stop and go; not after a complete stop. Brakes?
4) Rattling noise from going over bumps/potholes.

It's what it's I guess.
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Old 06-23-2017, 02:46 PM   #9
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Here are some pictures of the car. It's a beauty, and an absolute pleasure to drive. I am just trying to get rid of the noise(s) if possible.
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Old 06-27-2017, 04:15 PM   #10
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Nice, you can see that it's very well-maintained. If I were in Canada I would definitely but it
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Old 06-27-2017, 11:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wc123wc View Post
Basically there is more than one type of noise all coming from the front of the car...I guess it comes with the age of the car.

1) Whooshing sound from going over bumps. I guess the damper are old?
2) Cracking noise at sharp steering at low speed.
3) Clicking noise after a quick stop and go; not after a complete stop. Brakes?
4) Rattling noise from going over bumps/potholes.

It's what it's I guess.
1. I agree
2. Bad tie rods, bearings maybe?
3. If from rear, your driveshaft CV joint is a likely culprit
4. I chased this for years in my 540. Everything from sway bar end links to strut mounts to motor mounts. Could be thrust arms/bushes too.
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