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X5 E70 (2007 - 2013)
E70 BMW X5 produced between 2007 and 2013. Discuss the E70 X5 with other BMW owners here.

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  #1  
Old 04-15-2010, 04:14 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2005 X5 4.8is
2005 X5 4.8 Transmission Failsafe code 4F8A

I need help...I just bought a used 05 4.8is auto trans with 66k miles-no warranty. It started having hesitation problems while shifting from 3rd to 4th gear. Eventually it will hesitate or 'slip' so bad that it goes into failsafe mode. I've noticed that it only does it once it's warmed up. It drives absolutely perfectly and then out of nowhere it starts hesitating until it goes into failsafe. And it's only with a certain amount of pressure on the throttle. If I give it a lot of gas it doesn't do it. Subsequently, if I give it just a little gas it won't do it either. It's somewhere in between. Now for the run down...

I've taken it to 4 different shops. I'll try to sum this up as easy as I can... The first place told me that it was a fluke deal and to keep driving it. Of course it happened again and then they took down the transmission filter and pan. They said it was clear as could be and ZERO debris. No gunk, no metal shavings. At that point he told me that the filter wasn't bolted up correctly and he thinks it was a pressure loss problem and now it will be fine. The day I drove it off, it went into failsafe. I turned around and went back. Sometimes turning the car off and on clears it out of failsafe, sometimes not. That day it cleared it. The mechanic and I went for a ride and it did slipping again. He said it felt like it was NOT a tranny problem but a engine problem. Then the code that he found was 4F8A. He said I needed a new transmission...

The next place I went to told me that it could be a computer software problem and that I need to take it to BMW to have it updated. Did that and the dealer told me it had Dinan software upgrade. Which I wasn't told when purchasing. I told them to remove it, and add all current updates to ALL computers in the car. (I also want to add that my driver front wheel well was making a clunking noise and then the self adjusting suspension inactive light came on. The dealer told me I have a leak in the airbag. However, it's never done it since and has stayed full this entire time. Also once full the sound went away so I think it was just the depleted airbag. So I tend to think it points toward a computer issue. Even in the morning it's full. One would think if it actually had a LEAK it would go flat at least some point during the last week again...right?)

So back to the tranny. I drove it off and the shifting did feel different with the Dinan removed, but it felt great. Smooth and like a different car. But then, it slipped again. About 7 times and then went to failsafe mode. At this point I'm at a loss. I am sick to think of spending $8000 for a new tranny and that not be the issue. I want to completely rule out that it's not a computer problem. But now I have no clue what to do. The dealer is telling me I need a new transmission. But it is intermittent enough that I'm not sure. Plus with the fluid and pan being so clear it makes me hesitate... Another shop is saying possibly computer and working on it now.. Also the code comes up that it's slipping between 4th and 5th gear but I am certain it's between 3rd and 4th. One shop I took it to hooked it up to a rev monitor (?) and confirmed it WAS between 3rd and 4th. Then why does the computer code say 4th and 5th!?! I can't keep spending money blindly with no clue what will fix it...HELP!!! Thank you soo much in advance!!!
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  #2  
Old 04-15-2010, 08:35 PM
ard ard is offline
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The prior owner probably had transmission issues and had the fluid changed in a similar desperate attempt to foresall the future... your clear fluid is of zero diagnostic value unless you KNOW it was original. (The filter not being bolted up correctly? Prior owner=scumbag)

The prior owner had Dinan software. I take this as an indication he (or she) beat the crap out of the transmission- redline raised 250rpm...just imagine what those full throttle shifts did to the tranny.

had anyone put gauges on the tranny and measureed line pressures, etc as the trans shifts? This seems like a classic symptom of worn/heated/leaking seals causing sloppy hydraulic actuation- and slipping. It can vary with tranny temp and load specifics.

I would stop spending money chasing the hope of a silver bullet.

I would concentrate on buying a BMW REMANUFACTURED transmission as cheaply as possible. I would spend some time on line and on the phone with the bigger internet dealers, find who will give you the best price- then approach your dealer and negotiate a package price- labor+ tranny. I would FIRST find out what the "book time" is on a tranny R+R, and be prepared when I go to my local dealer....

GL

A

PS About 6 months ago I replaced the tranny on my beater MDX.... $3k total. Acura Reman, dealer installed. Negotiated. Oh, and that was at 206,000 miles. But I actually change my ATF fluid religiously- for soem reason BMW owners seem to think their fluid lasts forever.
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  #3  
Old 04-15-2010, 09:09 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Thanks for your response. I agree with you that the previous owner probably beat the crap out of the transmission especially because they put the Dinan software in...and also that the transmission fluid should be changed at least every 30k miles!!

To answer your question, no nobody has put gauges on the tranny to measure line pressures. I will bring that up to the mechanic who has it now, thank you. Do you think that if it is something like a leaking seal I can get that fixed rather than buy an entirely new transmission? Again, if I need a new tranny or some work done on the one I have now, I will do it. I just want to KNOW that I need to go down that avenue now and it not be a computer/programming issue!!! Nothing would be worse than to start putting money into the trans and it end up not being that at all!

I've called a few places and the ball park for most of the BMW re-manufactured trannys are $8k with labor. Thank you again
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  #4  
Old 04-15-2010, 11:42 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie822 View Post
Thanks for your response. I agree with you that the previous owner probably beat the crap out of the transmission especially because they put the Dinan software in...and also that the transmission fluid should be changed at least every 30k miles!!

To answer your question, no nobody has put gauges on the tranny to measure line pressures. I will bring that up to the mechanic who has it now, thank you. Do you think that if it is something like a leaking seal I can get that fixed rather than buy an entirely new transmission? Again, if I need a new tranny or some work done on the one I have now, I will do it. I just want to KNOW that I need to go down that avenue now and it not be a computer/programming issue!!! Nothing would be worse than to start putting money into the trans and it end up not being that at all!

I've called a few places and the ball park for most of the BMW re-manufactured trannys are $8k with labor. Thank you again
-

I would not spend money on the tranny to fix it- The internal seals are all done on a rebuild- these are not usually done as a repair...this is throwing good money after bad. The pressure tests just confirm it is shot. If pressures are GOOD, then maybe the problem is something else.

DO NOT CALL PLACES!!!! Find out what the part costs and what the labor time is. THEN call the places.

Contact Tischer, Crowne, getbmwparts and get a quote on the tranny alone. Maybe someone can post a labnor time for an R&R.

A
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  #5  
Old 04-16-2010, 06:07 AM
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David1 David1 is offline
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There are many folks on here that have the older X5is that need trans replacement either for slipping or a bad torque converter.
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  #6  
Old 04-16-2010, 08:25 AM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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David - I know there are several problems with the older 5spd transmission that's used in 03 and older. But I was just hoping since I haven't read many problems with the 6spd that's used in my year that it would be ok!

Ard- Thanks a bunch for the contact info!!
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  #7  
Old 04-16-2010, 03:30 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David1 View Post
There are many folks on here that have the older X5is that need trans replacement either for slipping or a bad torque converter.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie822 View Post
David - I know there are several problems with the older 5spd transmission that's used in 03 and older. But I was just hoping since I haven't read many problems with the 6spd that's used in my year that it would be ok!
!
Just a matter of time. The lack of BMW maintenance on these trannies will come home to roost in the 6sp just like it does in the 5sp. Nothing "magical"- heat, time, debris, wear
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  #8  
Old 04-16-2010, 04:49 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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I agree, but I just feel like with 66k miles even if it hasn't had a flush yet, it wouldn't be shot.

Also what else is still making me hesitate on a mechanical problem is that my front airbag did NOT have a leak after all. It was a "random" glitch I'm told...it did it one morning and not once since then and stored no codes.
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  #9  
Old 04-16-2010, 06:01 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie822 View Post
I agree, but I just feel like with 66k miles even if it hasn't had a flush yet, it wouldn't be shot.
I'm making a general statement about maintenance.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie822 View Post
Also what else is still making me hesitate on a mechanical problem is that my front airbag did NOT have a leak after all. It was a "random" glitch I'm told...it did it one morning and not once since then and stored no codes.
I have no idea what you are talking about with the "air bag leaks". There is no such possible "code" or "problem"... airbags are inflated ONCE and almost immediately deflate- tehre is nothing that monitors the integrity of an airbag... since your first post just mentioned this as an aside I ignored it. I suspect that you had some random code with the rear air suspension, and the dealer was just ignorant or lying- plus some lost in translation....

Dealers lie, they are ignorant, they are lazy- they are really bad at diagnostics- they tend to throw parts at problems...this is all true. But it is also true that once you have an internal transmission fault due to abuse, it is a loosing battle trying to fix "that one thing that is causing MY current problem". Been there, done that. If you were a hobby mechanic that wanted to learn about Getrag 6sp ATFs, then sure- spend 40 hours messing around. But if you are paying a professional, you want to just 'cut out the cancer all the way to the margins' and be done with it.


Here: $4879
http://www.trademotion.com/partlocat...&siteid=214672

Here 4570
http://www.trademotion.com/partlocat...&siteid=214760


Core charge is $500. Probably 150 to ship the new one to you, 150 to ship yours back in the same container- they refund the 500.

$5000 in parts.

What is the labor? I don't know. I'll guess 10 hours. $130x10=1300. 6300.


You want a Getrag GA6HP26Z transmission. BMW part number is 24007530100

If you want to keep the BMW warranty on the tranny, a BMW dealer must install it- last tranny I did (see above) I could have put in myself. But for $1100 I decided to have acura do it and keep the warranty.

Good luck

A
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  #10  
Old 04-16-2010, 06:59 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Thank you SOO MUCH for getting prices for me, that is extremely sweet of you! I really really appreciate it!!

As for the suspension...Ok my instrument panel lit up and said 'self adjusting suspension inactive' and the green light to the left of the steering wheel which indicates the ride height was out. I turned the car off and on 3 times and the code stayed. Then then next time I started it the code was off, and the light was back on so it was back to normal. When I took it to the dealer they told me my driver front airbag had a leak and needed to be replaced ($1723). However, ever since that day it has never had that code one time and the airbag has remained full. So evidently it doesn't have a leak! And the shop that I just took it to told me there wasn't a stored code and there isn't a leak. So that points to a screwy computer, in my opinion, right!? And my flat tire light comes on and off too, but I've checked the air pressure and it hasn't changed. I read a BMW bulletin that said it gives out faulty readings.

But again, it makes me feel like it's a computer issue. And especially because I would think if it were the transmission it would continually slip between 3rd & 4th, not intermittently! Ugh, I don't know....
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  #11  
Old 04-16-2010, 07:10 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie822 View Post
Thank you SOO MUCH for getting prices for me, that is extremely sweet of you! I really really appreciate it!!

As for the suspension...Ok my instrument panel lit up and said 'self adjusting suspension inactive' and the green light to the left of the steering wheel which indicates the ride height was out. I turned the car off and on 3 times and the code stayed. Then then next time I started it the code was off, and the light was back on so it was back to normal. When I took it to the dealer they told me my driver front airbag had a leak and needed to be replaced ($1723). However, ever since that day it has never had that code one time and the airbag has remained full. So evidently it doesn't have a leak! And the shop that I just took it to told me there wasn't a stored code and there isn't a leak. So that points to a screwy computer, in my opinion, right!? And my flat tire light comes on and off too, but I've checked the air pressure and it hasn't changed. I read a BMW bulletin that said it gives out faulty readings.

But again, it makes me feel like it's a computer issue. And especially because I would think if it were the transmission it would continually slip between 3rd & 4th, not intermittently! Ugh, I don't know....
so you had (possibly) a transient code on the suspension computer, and you think (desperately cling to the hope ) that it could just be one issue causing the old 'airbag code' and all the transmission issues???

Two different computers.

The "suspension inact" stuff seems to be very common- do a separate search about that issue. I think the only conclusion you can draw from that experience is the dealer is a thief.

Second- read your manual. You will see that the 'tire light thingy' actually needs to be "set"...and then "reset" when you change tires, add air, etc. Pretty sure you turn the key on (not starting, but lights on) then hold the tire control button in until the dash/console indicator goes on or off... just hold it in for 15-20 seconds. Should reset the sysyem and fix that problem.


Has your tranny issue changed at all over time? Any worse on hot days, or after a long drive in one gear, etc? Anything about what you are doing when it slips that might be a pattern?

Can I ask? Did you get a Pre-Purchase Inspection when you bought this used? Bring it to a mechanic and get a really thorough inspection?

A

Last edited by ard; 04-16-2010 at 07:15 PM.
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  #12  
Old 04-16-2010, 07:30 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Of course I would love that the same issue is causing all the problems by a screwing computer. I'm not convinced one way or the other yet. Yes I am obviously leaning toward it being the transmission itself. I just want to make certain that it isn't a computer issue first. If I buy a new trans and it still does the same issue, I will be extremely disgruntled. I'm just wondering if it could be a throttle positioning sensor? Because it really ONLY slips based on the EXACT position of the throttle.

I'm aware that the tire pressure monitor needs to be reset. I have done that each time...And without the tire pressure changing, the light intermittently comes on and off. Again, not saying it IS the same reason I'm having transmission issue, just merely stating the possibility that could be a communication issue. Yes I did have an inspection, at a shop up where I bought the car. No computer codes showed up, and the only thing brought to my attention was that the oil needed changing and that the brakes are getting low. Other than that, a clean bill of health.

It slips worse once the car is warmed up... It hasn't changed since I've bought it, even after the computer updates through BMW.
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Old 04-16-2010, 09:39 PM
ard ard is offline
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Well, it's piqued my interest. A few interesting posts for the 5 speed, nothing much on the 6sp.

The AT fluid gets thinner when it warms- and leaky internal seals will get worse, so the functions that need internal pressure to 'hold' will fail when temp rises and fluid thins.

I guess I'm at a loss now... just drive it and see if it gets worse. If it does, and eventually the car won't move, (or gets real bad) you've proven it is the trans I guess.

A

PS If you have a BMW dealer diagnose "bad tranny" and they do the work, they can't give it back with the same problem.
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  #14  
Old 04-16-2010, 10:32 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Yes, I think you are on the right track that if it is an internal transmission problem, it's relating to a loss of pressure.

I think I will just keep driving it for now and do a little more research to see. I agree that if it keeps getting worse, at least I'll know for sure it's not computer/sensor related! I'm going to talk to a friend at BMW next week and see what he thinks.

Thank you again for your input and looking up the parts/prices! I will update what I find out
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Old 04-18-2010, 11:17 AM
ard ard is offline
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Check this out:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=432722

Here's a VERY important distinction: "BMW Experts" know "BMW"..and BMW recommneds "replace transmission" when the box doesn't work right. At least in my experience. Dealers rarely troubleshoot INTO the transmission case.

You might do better finding a Getrag Transmission Expert- someone that knows TRANSMISSIONS and not just BMWs.

GL

A
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  #16  
Old 04-18-2010, 08:34 PM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Yes, I agree they are the best at distinguishing problems. At this point I will most likely buy a new transmission... Thank you again!
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  #17  
Old 06-23-2010, 10:51 AM
Katie822 Katie822 is offline
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Hey everyone, I just wanted to update my post at let you all know that I had the transmission replaced through the dealer and no longer have any problems! I've been driving it for a month now and haven't had a single issue. Thanks everyone for your help!
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