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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
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  #26  
Old 01-29-2011, 06:57 AM
Bimmer Squid Bimmer Squid is offline
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Xfer case Fluid change / quantity

Just did a xfer case fluid change on '08 X3 3.0si and have a data point you all might be interested in wrt service specs and failures of the xfer case. ALL the data I was able to get from this forum (and others) was the case required ~.7 liters of the special fluid, and that's exactly what drained out of mine when i pulled the plug. I went on BMW's TIS website and paid my $30 bucks for 24 hrs of access...dowloaded all the basic to intermediate maintenance info I could think of, including this particular check...so in theory this data is exactly what BMW says in THE answer.

BLAB (bottom line at bottom): BMW tech manual specifies to fill until fluid starts coming out fill hole, which took ~.9 liters. So what? Just wondering if the factory is habbitually underfilling this critical piece of driveline gear, resulting in pre-mature failure. Remember.."lifetime fill" means until the component reaches the end of it's life, not necessarily the lifetime of the car, or yours!

Thoughts?
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  #27  
Old 01-29-2011, 07:23 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer Squid View Post
Just did a xfer case fluid change on '08 X3 3.0si and have a data point you all might be interested in wrt service specs and failures of the xfer case. ALL the data I was able to get from this forum (and others) was the case required ~.7 liters of the special fluid, and that's exactly what drained out of mine when i pulled the plug ... BMW tech manual specifies to fill until fluid starts coming out fill hole, which took ~.9 liters. So what? Just wondering if the factory is habbitually underfilling this critical piece of driveline gear, resulting in pre-mature failure. Remember.."lifetime fill" means until the component reaches the end of it's life, not necessarily the lifetime of the car, or yours!

Thoughts?
Hmmm. It could be that 0.7 liters is the minimum acceptable fluid level...? Don't know myself what the acceptable range is; I'm sure someone else might...

Assuming that it is, and in the current corporate environment, I could easily believe the bean counters in the BMW front office have ordered minimum fluid levels at the factory to save a few Euros in profit margin; in essence, BMW would get a "free" 0.7-liter fluid fill (at least in the case of the transfer case) in two of every nine vehicles (by withholding 0.2 liters of fluid from every vehicle produced)... Plus with all the fluids at minimum, the vehicle will weigh a little less for shipping purposes, and less weight = lower shipping charges. Probably in the noise for one vehicle, but when you're shipping thousands of vehicles, it adds up...

The question then becomes whether the dealer is supposed to top off all these fluids just prior to delivery; or whether many of them are conveniently dispensing with that "pre-delivery preparation" to increase their own profit margins, figuring no one will be the wiser...?

All speculation, I admit... But...
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  #28  
Old 01-29-2011, 01:25 PM
spokelizard spokelizard is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer Squid View Post
I went on BMW's TIS website and paid my $30 bucks for 24 hrs of access...dowloaded all the basic to intermediate maintenance info I could think of
I wasn't familiar with this resource. Looks interesting. Went to the website, but before I plunk down my $30 for a day pass, can you give me an idea of what's behind the door??
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  #29  
Old 03-14-2011, 08:54 AM
Klamalama Klamalama is offline
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About a month ago I started to get the dreaded 3 light combo, with sound accompaniment at shutdown. So, before total failure I traded the X3 for a Lexus RX350. OK, it doesn't have a manual transmission, but in the quality respect it appears to be light years better. I'm still keeping my 330i but the love affair has been severely tempered by quality issues.
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  #30  
Old 03-16-2011, 11:35 AM
sfx3bmw sfx3bmw is offline
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Used Transfer Case

I am looking for a used transfer case for my X3. Does anyone know a reputable reseller? I have looked on the Internet and really cannot tell who to trust.
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  #31  
Old 03-16-2011, 06:18 PM
buford buford is offline
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what year?
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  #32  
Old 03-16-2011, 06:23 PM
sfx3bmw sfx3bmw is offline
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It is an 06 with about 80k in miles.
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  #33  
Old 03-18-2011, 12:19 AM
PPXYZ PPXYZ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Klamalama View Post
About a month ago I started to get the dreaded 3 light combo, with sound accompaniment at shutdown. So, before total failure I traded the X3 for a Lexus RX350. OK, it doesn't have a manual transmission, but in the quality respect it appears to be light years better. I'm still keeping my 330i but the love affair has been severely tempered by quality issues.
This car is unnerving.

I hear that there is a new Prius coming. Longer, taller but still no AWD. Drove a new Highlander Limited...too big and really overstuffed and unwieldy. About the same price as the X3. The X3 is much sprightlier, much leaner and MUCH nicer to drive but these issues are really unnerving even with my low miles. My other option was the RX and, even with all of Toyota's problems, I am still wondering.....

Last edited by PPXYZ; 03-18-2011 at 12:21 AM.
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  #34  
Old 03-18-2011, 09:09 AM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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Originally Posted by PPXYZ View Post

I hear that there is a new Prius coming.

My other option was the RX and, even with all of Toyota's problems, I am still wondering.....
Speaking of expensive problems ..... do a lot of research before your next car purchase.

I have been wondering why nearly half the Toyota Prius taxis around here have one headlight out.

They even outnumber VW's with 1 headlight out, and that's saying something.

Thought it might be something to do with the electrical complexity of the Prius - just Googled it and discussion of the problem abounds.

For example:
http://www.lemonlawclaims.com/Toyota...ht_failure.htm

I wouldn't want to have to pay $1K to replace a HID headlight every few years.
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  #35  
Old 03-18-2011, 02:33 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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Wow, I thought it was just coincidence that I see a lot of one-eyed Priuii.
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  #36  
Old 03-18-2011, 06:46 PM
PPXYZ PPXYZ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Supercourse View Post
Speaking of expensive problems ..... do a lot of research before your next car purchase.

I have been wondering why nearly half the Toyota Prius taxis around here have one headlight out.

They even outnumber VW's with 1 headlight out, and that's saying something.

Thought it might be something to do with the electrical complexity of the Prius - just Googled it and discussion of the problem abounds.

For example:
http://www.lemonlawclaims.com/Toyota...ht_failure.htm

I wouldn't want to have to pay $1K to replace a HID headlight every few years.
Maybe a Honda then....

Maybe a bike...

I thought that the Prius required a battery change every five years or so and it cost some $5K. Apparently that is a myth and the battery lasts pretty much the life of the car although that remains to be seen. At any rate it costs about $2K not $5K and it supposedly doesn't fail that frequently.

Audi Q5's have a water pump problem requiring a recall. Audi stepped up and gave owners a 1 year extension on the car's warranty or so I heard.

Now that's nice service although the water pump breaking sucked.
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  #37  
Old 04-30-2011, 06:22 PM
craziipolakk craziipolakk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimflint01 View Post
Our 2005 X3 with 61k miles, always dealer serviced is also now very loud with a whine and the dealer said it's the transfer case and needs a new one for $3,500. 61k miles? Yikes, this sure does seem like a problem that should be dealer covered. Others out there with this problem? jimflint01 - Denver
DO you have a Warranty? because mine is running out in 7 days and im hveing the light come up when i start off the 4x4 light and everytime i go to the dealer the problem wont happen so i really dont know what to do should i extend my warranty or is it even covered under warranty? if i extend it
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  #38  
Old 04-30-2011, 06:26 PM
craziipolakk craziipolakk is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Speed66 View Post
Hi guys,

Just joined up. As a newbie on Bimmerfest i wanted to know how many members have actually had or heard of transfer case problems with these X3's. Mine is a 3 litre petrol auto. BMW says they dont generally cause problems but im not so sure on that now as the car has only done 33000kms since new and has never seen any real hard work. So i'm thinking there must be an inherent problem in these.

Any help or ideas?

Mine started developing a whinning noise a few thousand K's back.
I think im having that problem the dealer cant find out whats wrong with it really annoying everytime i drive the 4x4 light comes on for no reason and the car looses power starts shaking ? is that what youre faced with? i have a 07 x3 with 46000 miles
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  #39  
Old 10-01-2011, 03:11 AM
tempestv8 tempestv8 is offline
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Are the problem transfer cases in this thread limited to the X-drive transfer case or did some folks experience failed non X-drive transfer cases too?
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  #40  
Old 10-01-2011, 05:23 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tempestv8 View Post
Are the problem transfer cases in this thread limited to the X-drive transfer case or did some folks experience failed non X-drive transfer cases too?
If you don't have xDrive (i.e., AWD), you don't have a transfer case. Perhaps you're confusing terminology; do you mean the differential...?
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Last edited by timfitz63; 10-01-2011 at 05:43 AM.
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  #41  
Old 10-06-2011, 12:01 AM
e83 e83 is offline
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I have had this issue (I think). The dealer said it was due to non OEM tyres which I thought was rubbish. I bought my car with a staggered setup (235/50R18 and 255/45R18) Having looked into it further, it seems the Star rated tyres shipped on BMW are tweaked so that the rolling circumfrence front a rear are the same otherwise the xdrive system has a massive task balancing it all out and eventually gives.
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  #42  
Old 10-06-2011, 05:49 AM
tempestv8 tempestv8 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timfitz63 View Post
If you don't have xDrive (i.e., AWD), you don't have a transfer case. Perhaps you're confusing terminology; do you mean the differential...?
My bad - I was very confused by my parts person at the BMW dealer. I gave them the VIN number and asked if my vehicle has X-drive so that I can buy the right replacement fluid. He said that according to the VIN, it doesn't have X-drive and I should just put Dexron III into the transfer case.

Anyway, I crawled underneath the vehicle and could see the transfer case was indeed an X-drive transfer case. So I really don't know why the dealer seemed to think that there are X3 vehicles without X-drive.... dumb asses...

I've since checked the fluid inside the transfer case and it was fine so I didn't end up changing the fluid, which was my intent all along.
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  #43  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:58 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tempestv8 View Post
My bad - I was very confused by my parts person at the BMW dealer. I gave them the VIN number and asked if my vehicle has X-drive so that I can buy the right replacement fluid. He said that according to the VIN, it doesn't have X-drive and I should just put Dexron III into the transfer case.

Anyway, I crawled underneath the vehicle and could see the transfer case was indeed an X-drive transfer case. So I really don't know why the dealer seemed to think that there are X3 vehicles without X-drive.... dumb asses...

I've since checked the fluid inside the transfer case and it was fine so I didn't end up changing the fluid, which was my intent all along.
No worries; it wasn't clear to me whether you already had an X3, or were just researching one. I saw that you had a 5-Series wagon, and wasn't sure what vehicle you were inquiring about. And clearly, your SA was confusing the matter for you.

As you surmised, all X3's have xDrive, and therefore, all have a transfer case.
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  #44  
Old 10-06-2011, 02:54 PM
tempestv8 tempestv8 is offline
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I should say that it was the parts person that I spoke to, and not the Service Advisor. The parts department may not be as clued up as the SAs. Anyway, no harm done as I could clearly identify the transfer case to be x-drive, as I could see the protruding electric stepper motor for the transfer case tucked up behind the heat shield. That was how I confirmed that I definitely had x-drive - the x-drive mechanism uses that electric motor to modulate the pressure on the clutch packs...

I've now edited my profile. Got two M54 powered vehicles to maintain now.
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  #45  
Old 10-20-2011, 01:04 PM
sashaepstein sashaepstein is offline
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Hello, dear X3 owners!

I am soliciting an advice on the transfer case problem in my 2004 x3. The problem manifests by loud bangs when accelerating from low speed, which after reading this thread I think is a common problem. The mechanic in the BMW service whom I demonstrated the problem said that he thinks it is the transfer case because he said "he scanned car and found code for VTG". To verify that claim he "disconnected VTG" (this is a quote from the customer receipt printout) and let me drive the vehicle. The bangs were gone, so he said the transfer case needs to be replaced. First of all, I don't understand whether he disconnected the rear drive or the front drive when he said he "disconnected VTG". Secondly, since at least one drive is connected and the car runs perfectly, doesn't it mean that at least some part of transfer case is ok?
I am just trying to see whether I really need to launch into a $4,500 repair.

Thanks in advance for any advice,
Sasha

Last edited by sashaepstein; 10-20-2011 at 01:24 PM.
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  #46  
Old 10-20-2011, 02:20 PM
Martin5333 Martin5333 is offline
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For you folks that have the jerk problem at 1000-2000 rpms, it might be the transmission and the different riding habits detected by the computer, instead of the transfer case.
You can try reseting it by doing the following procedure:


1. Insert key and turn 2 clicks - accessories power on, dash lights illuminate.
2. Press gas pedal all the way to floor, past the click point.
3. Hold for 25 seconds.
4. Release gas pedal.
5. Turn engine on and ride.

The jerking on first and second gears should end, specially for vehicles equipped with steptronic.
Martin
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  #47  
Old 10-20-2011, 10:15 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sashaepstein View Post
.... he said "he scanned car and found code for VTG". To verify that claim he "disconnected VTG" (this is a quote from the customer receipt printout) and let me drive the vehicle. The bangs were gone, so he said the transfer case needs to be replaced.
VTG is BMWspeak for Gearbox Control Module.

My guess is he just undid the electrical connector on the transfer case actuator, so you would have been driving without xDrive.

I think we have heard of cases where just draining and refilling the transfer case solved the banging.

But it may be too far gone - ask them why that would happen when the fluid is lifetime.
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  #48  
Old 10-22-2011, 08:30 PM
sashaepstein sashaepstein is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Supercourse View Post
VTG is BMWspeak for Gearbox Control Module.

My guess is he just undid the electrical connector on the transfer case actuator, so you would have been driving without xDrive.

I think we have heard of cases where just draining and refilling the transfer case solved the banging.

But it may be too far gone - ask them why that would happen when the fluid is lifetime.

Thanks. I think things have really gone too far because I've been driving it with these bangs for 10 months :-) Usually the bangs are too laud and too uncomfortable only when I got stuck into a traffic on highway, but that happens pretty rare.
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  #49  
Old 11-01-2011, 01:47 PM
Hungarian E30 Hungarian E30 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sashaepstein View Post
Thanks. I think things have really gone too far because I've been driving it with these bangs for 10 months :-) Usually the bangs are too laud and too uncomfortable only when I got stuck into a traffic on highway, but that happens pretty rare.
I had the banging noise too and some jerking at low rpm. I bought a TC with 66k in it, but I did not swap yet, because I did the reset (stated above) and changed to winter wheels and after the test drive the noise is gone and the car pulls strong. I ordered factory fluid (My fav store had one liter in stock) for my TC. I'll change it and if I still have no noise, I'll have a TC for sale.
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  #50  
Old 11-10-2011, 04:09 AM
Martin5333 Martin5333 is offline
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Tired of the shudders and uncomfortable ride at low rpms I went for the Transfer Case oil change ( should've done it before....).I have 56k miles on my 2004 3.0i steptronic bimmer. What a difference! Problem solved, and a relief that the TC isn't damaged.
Hence i do recommend if you detect this problem go for the oil TC change and reset your computer as described in my other post. If this doesn't work then the problem could be the actuator....
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Last edited by Martin5333; 11-10-2011 at 04:10 AM.
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