new member from UK with what appears to be a unique rattle/vibration/buzz/hum question - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 08-30-2011
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Smile new member from UK with what appears to be a unique rattle/vibration/buzz/hum question

Hi Everyone,

I brought my jasper blue SLK (R171 04 plate) in February 2011 and have loved every moment. Iíve used this site as a mine of information since purchasing it to solve a host of little problems from finding where the 12v plug was to clearing leaves from the air duct and fan causing me much hassle and can honestly rate it as one of the best car forums Iíve used.

I have a question for everyone though...

Since buying the car there has been the tiniest buzz/rattle/hum/vibration noise coming from the interior of the car. I THINK itís from the passenger side (left). It only appears when I hit 40+ mph regardless of road quality. Iíve seriously trawled this and other forums for similar experiences, every time I have found a possible answer I have wasted countless hours and weekend removing parts, tightening and realigning things with the vain hope to set off and the noise be gone but alas it remains. Today Iíve had enough and thought id pop on and ask the question. First Iíll tell you everything I have tried

I've removed the glove box entirely and checked all wires behind it for anything loose or rubbing
Iíve cleared lodged leaves from the fan blower unit (engine side)
Iíve had the air filter out and cleaned the box and checked the pipes for any obstructions as well as ensuring the catches are properly engaged
Iíve removed the interior passenger vanity mirror and housing above to ensure nothing was loose behind them ie wires to the lighting
Iíve checked the wiring behind the stereo isnít vibrating on anything by removing the gear lever housing, small storage tray and fan controls to get good access and visibility
Ive checked nothing is rattling around under the gear box leather bag and centre trim console by completely removing them
Iíve had both seats out (entirely from the car) and checked for coins/pens etc underneath
Checked the obviously things like loose stuff under the spare wheel.
Iíve emptied everything from EVERY side pocket, dash tray, centre arm rest compartment and glove box and still the noise persists.
Iím running out of things to check

As I say Iím almost 100% sure itís an interior noise, not from the engine as Iíve got out and listened for a similar frequency but I canít hear it. it may emanate from a fan vent but I donít believe its fan related as it doesnít start or stop if using the fan/ac. itís definitely not just a squeaking rear shelf etc as those noises as well as roof rattles are fine by me, Iím used to them from other cars, but this is a whole different noise...a constant, one pitch/frequency quiet hum/vibration/rattle/buzz

Itís driving me mad, I know it sounds daft but the noise just canít be ignored so Iím hoping someone will post some similar experience and most importantly anything I can check.

Much appreciated in advance for any ideas
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#2 Old 08-30-2011
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#3 Old 08-30-2011
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Welcome from London - the cabin on the R171 is not really well insulated from noises generated in the boot (trunk), and I've had tyres making a weird noise that resonated throughout the cabin..

If you have someone setting in the passenger seat, can they hear or help localize it?



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#4 Old 08-30-2011
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Welcome from NE England. Have you checked the heat shields under the car, between the exhaust system and the body? These can sometimes make buzzy noises, but as John says, actually trying to pinpoint the source can sometimes be nigh on impossible.






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#5 Old 08-30-2011
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#6 Old 08-30-2011
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Hiya Froome

Greetings and welcome from Staffordshire.

I know this is going to sound silly when it comes to the noise you're getting, what worked for me was to hook the passenger seat belt over the lumbar support. Once I did that thing improved enormously for me.

Hope to see some pics of your lovely SLK :-)
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#7 Old 08-30-2011
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Smile

Hi,

thanks for all of the quick, friendly responses.

I've tried the majority of those suggested but i will definitely check over them again, there are plenty of nooks and crannies in the boots for things to tap and rattle about in. The heat shield check is one i havent done at all yet so im keen to check that once its light again

thanks for all of the suggestions so far...keep them coming please
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#8 Old 08-30-2011
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Welcome from NW Blighty....

Good luck in finding your annoying noise. I can't add anything I'm afraid.
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#9 Old 08-30-2011
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IIRC some have reported this from the fuel/petrol area, like a pump of some sort.

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#10 Old 08-30-2011
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It may not be from the interior at all. I recently had to take my new '12 SLK 350 in because it sounded like the whipping of helicopter blades inside my car when it was idling. When I got out of the car, couldn't hear a damn thing. So, I took it to the dealer, and they actually lifted it up and was going over the whole car with a microphone and headphones to try and detect where it was coming from. They were equally perplexed as to why it sounded SO loud inside, but you couldn't hear it from the outside. They finally determined it was a valve (I think the bypass valve) for the fuel pump. After taking the fuel tank apart, they confirmed that was the problem.

So, moral of the story is, just 'cause it sounds like it's inside, doesn't mean it is.

I wonder if they can't lift the car up, push the accelerator to where it exceeds 40MPH, and see if the sound doesn't appear. Then, they might use the microphone/headphone trick to narrow it down.


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#11 Old 08-30-2011
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#12 Old 08-30-2011
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#13 Old 08-31-2011
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Welcome from Michigan.... I would guess heat shield vibration but I have had the seat back too far where it vibrated against the wind screen. Slight seat adjustment and no noise. Since you removed the seats, doubt this is your issue....
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#14 Old 08-31-2011
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Hi from London,

Welcome aboard, bummer about the niggle some good suggestions so far, cant really add, best of luck and hope you get it sorted, where in Brum are you?
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#15 Old 08-31-2011
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WOW, thank you

i cant believe how many people have taken the time to answer me with suggestions, from so far afield too. Great community forum.

ive tried a few of the suggestions this afternoon and unfortunately no luck, but i must be getting close through the process of elimination...the rattle/buzz wont beat me

i will have to wait to the weekend to check the heat shield...am i right in thinking i have to get under the car and check from the engine down the pipes to the back of the car to check "the heat shield"? i seem to remember someone commenting on this on a post i have read (albeit 100's of them)

i did notice this morning on my way to work that the buzz had got louder..almost changed pitch since i had had the glovebox out so i am hoping its something behind there..although i really cant imagine what as i seem to have examined it so thoroughly

hasontour - im from the sutton area of birmingham if you know it?
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#16 Old 08-31-2011
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Do you know if the windshield (wind screen) has ever been replaced?


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#17 Old 09-01-2011
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Hey, yeah i know Sutton, i'm originaly from Brum, Kings Heath/Moseley

Nice colour choice by the way
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#18 Old 09-01-2011
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#19 Old 09-01-2011
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hi

Jbanks - not sure about the windscreen, it does look pretty unmarked for a 7 year old car so maybe? why? im open to any and all suggestions

i fully removed the glovebox this morning and drove to work on a road that never fails to bring the noise out more than others..probably as i get chance to go about 40-50mph and the noise was still there but BARELY noticeable at all. Now, this may have diminished as there was a huge "gap/hole" for the vibrations to fall out of (opposed to reverberating off) but it was definitely quieter so im thinking its related for sure now. is there anything known to be in that region that comes loose...tap against things etc...ive checked wiring and cut cable ties short etc.

hasontour - no way, thats pretty coincidental, i work abhout 5 mins from moseley...right by edgbaston cricket ground. the colour isnt bad is it, i notice you have the same

cheers
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#20 Old 09-04-2011
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I had the fuel pump changed as it was hissing, but more noticeable while idling with sound coming from behind the rear cubbyhole. Still hisses but much quieter.


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