Timing chain BMW bulletin

 This Has been a big subject with everyone on my blog,,,,some of you guys have been asking about the bulletin about this repair,,,,so this is the BMW bulletin that us technicians work with,,,,I hope this helps some of you guys.

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83 Responses to Timing chain BMW bulletin

  1. JBone says:

    I had a mph dependent high pitched whine in my 2015 xdrive 28i e84 that they replaced the transfer case to fix. I’d say the noise is still there, but at 10 to 20% of the original volume. Could my noise have really been the timing chain?


  2. Dan says:

    Is there a good chance the timing chain will have extended warranty like the oil line feed problem? I have a 13′ X3 recently out of warranty and experiencing this problem now.


  3. Ned Monaghan says:

    Thanks for keeping us, the concerned, up to date on this timing chain issue. My car, 328i, CPO until Spring 2019 is listed so I’m covered. My further understanding however is that after the CPO warranty period ends , the repair of this failure would not be under warranty.

    Is that your understanding?



  4. concerned says:

    Can you post the sound file from TIS? Thanks.


  5. Jack says:

    From what I googled, this problem exist in N20/N26 with manufacturing date prior to 01/2015. But on the TSB, it says “produced before 03/2013”. I have 528i manufactured 02/2014. Should I be worried? Thanks! – Jack


  6. Peter says:

    did you hear of any engine damage because of this issue. or is it possible that it is a acoustic problem,
    Thanks Peter


  7. Neil Patel says:

    BMW refused to fix mine. Bill is almost $5000
    2012 528i xdrive 71k miles
    there is a class action law suit going on. I suggest all consumers to participate. It costs nothing
    Attorney handling cases in CA & NJ is Joe Santoli (josephsantoli@aol.com, 1-800-279-6996). Class reps are eligible for incentive awards commonly awarded by the Courts of $15-20k.


  8. Nick says:

    Hi Andreas,
    Thanks for all this information. I am looking at a used 2014 428i (build date 04/2014) that was a manufacturer buyback. Carfax shows timing chain and engine replaced in 09/2015. That’s how I found your site – researching the Carfax info. I’ve read that there was a new part that came out in 01/2015 (#11317584084 to #11318648732), not sure if it was the chain or the plastic guide rail. If this repair was done after 01/2015 – is it likely the new parts were used? This car is still under warranty until 06/2018. Just curious what your thoughts were. Thanks so much.


  9. Edward M. says:

    Talked with Class Action Attorney Joe S. his web site is : BMW engine failure class action.com – I told him that I was not experiencing problems as of yet but I would like the assurance’s of an extended warranty on N20 Engine failure that includes 100% cost of labor plus materials , period. So if you are interested in extended peace of mind call Joe 1-800-279-6996 or visit his web site. I love BMW and I have owned 7 BMW’s over the years. I always enjoyed the peace of mind knowing that their engineering was the best on the road……I don’t want some Corporate shirt and tie setting a police that will ruin my perception of “The Ultimate Driving Machine” ……..


  10. Edward M. says:

    Policy not Police ? Auto spell correct ?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. gullageb@yahoo.com says:

    You are living in a fantasy land if you think (or even expect) BMW to give you “assurance’s of an extended warranty on N20 Engine failure that includes 100% cost of labor plus materials.”

    After 4yrs or 50k miles, you are on your own unless you purchase additional warranty protection.

    A tiny fraction of N20 engines are experiencing this timing chain problem. This is nothing like the BMW high pressure fuel pump fiasco.


  12. Emil says:

    The engine oil pump chain of my 328i is broken which caused a damaged motor. Would you say that there can be a relationship to this service bulletin?


  13. concerned says:

    There is a thread on another forum that BMWNA now has 7-yr/70k extended limited warranty on timing chain and drive chain for oil pump for N26(and probably N20 too). My guess is the affected VINs who have paid for repair can get reimbursement through this ELW.


    Liked by 1 person

  14. concerned says:

    How many diagnostics hours are needed per SIB 11 03 17?

    My plan is to bring car in and authorize diagnostics, and see if the tech can find any issue. The caveat is if diagnostics sounds the timing chain is good, then I will need to pay $200/hour of diagnostics fees …..

    Does this take 4 hours to tear down and get to the timing chain and oil pump chain just to check?


  15. andrew says:

    Hello, came across this site when researching the 328i I was looking at potentially buying, as this uses the N20 engine. Great information on the site although I’m now a little worried! The car I am looking at was first registered in May 2013, it has 50k miles on it, all appears ok, but I guess this could be a candidate for trouble. Is there anything I could do to try and prevent problems, maybe getting the dealer to change the timing chain before I bought it is my best option? If they won’t, try and get a cost for doing the work and using that to bargain against the price? Or should I walk away from this engine at that age? thanks.


  16. kevin says:


    Is this service bulletin/extended warranty(ELW) only for north america?
    I live in the Netherlands. And have the same issue(whining sound), and my BMW dealer said its a known problem, but i still have to pay for it. Its not broken yet so ‘only’ 1500€
    Also, Is it still save to drive with it?



  17. N4S says:

    I would appreciate if you listen my engine (in the link). My serviceman is the opinion that everything is ok. In my view, the noise of the engine is terrifying:


  18. Benny Gonzales says:

    I have a 14 x1 x28i and it has a horrible rattling noise and a slight whine when idling. There is a loud tick in intial start up and that goes away but rattle stays with whinning. could this be result of timing chain issue


  19. Peter says:

    The question from my side is: What noise is normal for this engine and what is a chain issue.
    My X1 28i makes a whining noise since I have the car (3 years). The noise is on a lower frequency and directly after the cold start. It disappeares after the first minute, but not completely.
    Here in germany this engine has almost no negative issues


    • James says:

      I wonder why the N20 in Germany would not have reports of this issue? My VIN shows that it is a “Hot-climate version” (S823A Heissland-Ausführung) here in the US and delivered to a dealership in North Carolina. I am not sure what changes were made for the US, but perhaps whatever these were contribute to the failure?

      I just received a letter saying that they are extending the limited warranty on the Timing Chain and Oil Pump Drive Chain for 7 years or 70,000 miles from original in service date. Mine is a mid-2014 build, so after the date indicated in the SIB.

      I do hope my does not have this problem!


    • If the whine noise is just in the morning then that is the turbo whine during start up is normal,,,,if the whine is all the time while reving the engine hot or cold that is timing chain problem.


  20. zomerkoning says:

    I found that my engine sounded quite rough last night, so made a little video today, no idea if it’s a timing belt issue… Still got extended warranty, so if it would be I could get it fixed, any help would be really appreciated.


  21. Peter says:

    you mean the high frequently whine noise?
    The noise with the lower frequence at the beginning is exactlty this what I have after the cold start. It disappeares


  22. steve says:

    I think I have the whine. I snapped this photo of the chain and can see shinny spots on the top of the chain


  23. Mike says:

    Hi, I’m looking at buying a BMW 428i from a BMW dealer. The car has 91000kms (57000 miles) on it. Build date is July 2014. The extended warranty which I was thinking of buying from BMW themselves doesn’t cover the timing chain as stated by a BMW rep. In your opinion, is the car worth going for or am I setting myself up for a number of issues. Regards

    Ps: the car is an Australian model, not sure if they are affected by the timing chain issues.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Mike says:

    Hi, I’m looking at buying a BMW 428i from a BMW dealer. The car has 91000kms (57000 miles) on it. Build date is July 2014. The extended warranty which I was thinking of buying from BMW themselves doesn’t cover the timing chain as stated by a BMW rep. In your opinion, is the car worth going for or am I setting myself up for a number of issues. Regards

    Ps: the car is an Australian model, not sure if they are affected by the timing chain issues.


  25. MSportF30 says:

    i just purchased a 2014 328i with 38K miles on it… I don’t hear a whine but is it something I should always keep an eye out for in the future or are 2014 models not affected? I just brought it in to the dealer too to have a full inspection done on the same day of purchase. They did not mention anything about the timing chain either. I still will probably purchase an extended warranty on it though. -Thanks!


  26. iamfenom says:

    I just purchased a 2014 328i with 38K miles on it and the same day of purchase I brought it to my local BMW dealer to have a complete inspection performed. They did not find any mechanical issues and did not mention anything to me about the timing chain. I’m still planning on purchasing an extended warranty but would like to know if I should keep an eye out for this problem in the future still or are the 2014’s not affected? Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Grant says:

    Would appreciate if you could listen to this clip. Its a 2013 N20 X3. Pretty sure I can hear the whine. Will be interesting to see what the response from BMW Australia will be when I take it in. https://youtu.be/-aRqF4EpUDQ


  28. Mike S says:

    Hi and thank you so much for all the advice you give !
    I believe I have the same whining noise coming from my 2012 F10 528i. I can see the rubbing marks on the chain when I unscrew the engine oil cap also. I’m still within 7/70k extended warranty.
    The question is, how straight forward is this repair? How complex? and can they mess it up opening up the engine? I live in Maine, nothing against them, but the only BMW dealer is relatively low volume so I don’t know how many similar issues their technicians deal with…so would I be better off going to a larger dealership? Should I take it to Boston instead?


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