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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Discuss problems you have had or are having with your Z4
Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 12:48 pm

Hi all,

I've been struggling with a occasional steering wheel wobble between 55-65MPH range. Some days it's completely fine with no wobble at all and the day later it shakes again. I've already replaced front tires, balanced the wheels, changed front wishbones and FCAB's, put on new Sachs shocks all around with new top mounts, replaced the sway bar links and checked the suspension twice for any loosnes. All seems to be fine and I still cannot find the route of this issue. Does anyone have any idea what can be causing this? It kills all the joy of driving this car :(

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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by j3nks79 » Mon Feb 26, 2024 4:42 pm

Not a sticky caliper is it?
Or inner tie rods like to have play on these
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rdm05z4
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by rdm05z4 » Mon Feb 26, 2024 4:55 pm

Ball joints or Bent rim?
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Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 5:08 pm

Rims are straight, ball joints are also good since the control arms have recently been changed (300km ago).
As for the sticking caliper I'll have to check that. Tie rods seem to be ok, but will have a look again.

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perttu
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by perttu » Mon Feb 26, 2024 5:55 pm

Could be EPS-related: viewtopic.php?t=100725
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Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:03 pm

I've already adjusted the ring mentioned in the thread last year. My steering was very light before that, now it feels about right for a BMW. Unfortunately occasional wobble is still present :(

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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Mike6 » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:09 pm

Play in the steering or universal joints?

Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:12 pm

U joints on the steering column are tight, no play there. There's also no play in the steering itself, just sporadic steering wheel wobble above certain speed.

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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by enuff_zed » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:15 pm

I know you say you've done it, but it does sound like balancing.
Have you had the rears all sorted? Could be the rear end shimmying.
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Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:19 pm

I've had all 4 wheels checked and rebalanced by my friend, he assured me that the wheels and tires are fine. Also, if it was wheel balancing issue, wouldn't the wobble be permanent?

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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by enuff_zed » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:25 pm

Cebula wrote: Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:19 pm I've had all 4 wheels checked and rebalanced by my friend, he assured me that the wheels and tires are fine. Also, if it was wheel balancing issue, wouldn't the wobble be permanent?
Probably yes. Unless it was some kind of synchronisation between the wheels.
Anti-roll bar bushes?
Inner tie rod ends?
Always in the same gear?
Always on the same piece of road?
You also say the ball joints must be good as the lower arms were recently changed, but it is possible for new components to not be perfect.
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:37 pm

I do all the work on the car myself, new control arms were definitely good. Anti roll bar bushings were changed last September. Tie rods seem to be alright. It wobbles no matter the gear or road I'm driving :(

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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by enuff_zed » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:39 pm

Cebula wrote: Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:37 pm I do all the work on the car myself, new control arms were definitely good. Anti roll bar bushings were changed last September. Tie rods seem to be alright. It wobbles no matter the gear or road I'm driving :(
Fair enough, but what I really meant was, you could have bought a perfectly good arm, only for a ball joint to fail soon after.

I'm out of ideas for now but I'll have a think on it.
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Cebula
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by Cebula » Mon Feb 26, 2024 6:45 pm

I'm battling this issue for almost a year now. It was doing the same on old control arms :(

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perttu
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2003 E85 2.5i intermittent steering wheel wobble

Post by perttu » Mon Feb 26, 2024 7:38 pm

If you've tried everything else, you might want to revisit the EPS adjustment. I used to have the twitchy steering issue and I was never able to fully correct the problem by adjusting the ring alone. In my case, I had to adjust the steering rack preload as well, see viewtopic.php?p=2028068#p2028068. Now, a disclaimer, I have no scientific proof that the rack preload is 100% an affecting factor, but adjusting it worked for me.
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