The BMW X3 is a first generation Sport “Activity” Vehicle introduced to the US market in 2004 and ending in 2010. It was a continuation of the BMW 3-series and is also known as the e83. This high-performance crossover vehicle had all-wheel drive and a cab filled with high-tech gadgets, but also a few common problems that continue to be discovered. One such problem is that the sunroof rattles and shakes.
Many owners of the X3 have complained that if they have the sunroof cracked open, it will shake, rattle and knock once the vehicle exceeds 40 or 45mph. Some drivers have said it doesn’t happen when the sunroof is closed, but most have said that closing the sunroof entirely will stop the rattling.
Drivers have noted that cracking a side-window will help alleviate the problem slightly. This is due to a lowering of the cabin pressure so the rattling is not so evident. This is just a temporary solution and does not always alleviate the problem in all vehicles. The problem might be “better” but it is not solved. A rattling sunroof might be expected in vehicles that are aging or sunroofs that have had heavy-use, however it is also happening in X3 sunroofs that have had little use.
If your BMW e83 is having any sunroof problems and rattles, then visit a specialized German auto maintenance mechanic for professional service. They will be able to find the exact cause of the trouble and repair it, so you can open the sunroof without fear of rattling and knocking noises.
Search for a local, independent BMW repair shop with BMW mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the expense.