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Discussion Starter #1
Searched and found SEVERAL references to apparent issues on E39 PS brackets and alignment of belt etc. I find very few references to power steering problems on E60's.
Mine has gone to getting a little "chunky" when cold, then goes normal after 3-5 min. Last few days, getting some squeal when cold. Today, I parked it in the garage, and after running for just a couple seconds and squealing, I smelled hot rubber, like something was misaligned and dragging on the belt. Bearing, bracket, pulley or tensioner. I haven't ever looked in or at one, so I will dig in in a day or two.

Any threads or DIY's I haven't found yet? Send me a link if so please. Hopefully Wednesday I will tear in and document sharing what I find.

Thanks Gents and One lady.
 

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Mine did/does exactly the same. The squeals and the notchiness/chunky steering for the first 5 minutes until it's warmed up.
Then the power steering belt broke
Still had the same issue.
Replaced a couple of pulleys.
Still had the same issue with notchiness/chunky steering but no squealing.
In the end the indie shop said it was the actual power steering unit.
So I've decided to wait until the pump really fails before I replace it.
Good luck in your search for info on it.
 

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Searched and found SEVERAL references to apparent issues on E39 PS brackets and alignment of belt etc. I find very few references to power steering problems on E60's.
Mine has gone to getting a little "chunky" when cold, then goes normal after 3-5 min. Last few days, getting some squeal when cold. Today, I parked it in the garage, and after running for just a couple seconds and squealing, I smelled hot rubber, like something was misaligned and dragging on the belt. Bearing, bracket, pulley or tensioner. I haven't ever looked in or at one, so I will dig in in a day or two.

Any threads or DIY's I haven't found yet? Send me a link if so please. Hopefully Wednesday I will tear in and document sharing what I find.

Thanks Gents and One lady.
Probably your a/c /ps pump belt idler or tensioner pulley seized. On my car it was the idler that failed.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Pulled the fan and the belly pan, sure provides easy access to the whole front of the engine.
I pulled off the passenger belt and inspected, found angled, side wear on the back side of the belt. Looked at the idler and the tensioner, found a VERY mildly wobbly bearing on the idler. Tensioner seems fine.

So, Since I have it apart, I will replace the idler, both belts.
The question, should I replace the tensioners as well, since its apart? I mean, its not hard to get apart, but time is in short supply sometimes. Wondering if any of you have ever seen any wear on them?

The other drive units feel fine, but the squeal may come back and if it does, it will be a pump, not a belt!

Thanks all.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Dealer had an idler in stock, belts from NAPA auto parts, as neither BMW dealer had them in stock...
Swapped belts in no time.
VERY surprising- perhaps I want to believe, but it is so much quieter now. I was hearing this pulley since the day I bought the car, or it go slowly progressively worse. For how bad it wasn't, it sure made a lot of racket.
Immediately on start up, PS is smooth, motor is quieter.
 
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