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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 07-16-2014, 12:56 PM
MVITCH MVITCH is offline
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Location: Idaho
 
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Mein Auto: X5 35d
Unhappy Engine warning light coming on X5 Diesel

Purchased my 2011 x5 diesel with only 1367 miles on it this past Dec. The dealer replaced the EGR cooler prior to me buying it.Have loved it and now have just over 7000 on it. In the past 4 weeks have driven to places where I had steep elevation changes and the engine balked, warnings came on, and I lost much power until we got to the top and stopped the car, turned all off, and started again. Called the dealer in Tri Cities, Wa. (great dealership), and they said I am OK to drive, but to make an appt. soon. Had no further problems until this past Friday when heading out of Lewiston up our steep grade and the same feel of the balky engine and then the lights and warning came on again. Got to top, stopped and shut off, started up and away we went, with only a minor notice when passing a car along the way. Drove perfect in Tacoma, Wa. lowlands, and the engine light that had been on Friday/Sat was off Monday when I saw clients. On the way home to Lewiston Tuesday, we were cruising at 70 up to Snoqualmie pass and near the top, my engine balked, brought me down to 40mph, put my flashers on, and was fearful, I'd get hit in the rear as I moved right. Within a few seconds all was well, and we continued onto BMW tri cities for our 1pm checkup. After they drove and tested the car, they could see the incidents saying their tests showed code #004b81 for the egr rate control. Completed test plan with no defaults did clear codes and test drove OK. vehicle operating as designed. unfortunately on the way to Lewiston, we had to pass a car about 65 on a slight grade and again the engine balked some, light came on, and the warning notice in the NAV, and within a few seconds was fine again, and light went out. What the heck??? Any ideas, suggestions guys/gals??
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  #2  
Old 07-17-2014, 08:35 AM
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Pat_X5 Pat_X5 is offline
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Location: San Gabriel Valley - So Cal
 
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Mein Auto: '13 Diesel X5 & MBZ R350
Glad it's still under warranty.

Did you check the vehicle's history ?
Such a low mileage car for 3 years is suspect.

Was it possibly a buy back / lemon car ??

Let us know ?
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  #3  
Old 07-17-2014, 09:51 AM
lpcapital lpcapital is offline
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Very interesting!!! Yet another diesel car showing EGR/NOx issues at altitude. That along with the Denver, CO special testing they are doing I'm wondering what's cooking...

I've been wanting to report this factoid I've observed on my dad's 325d (Euro car, so take it for what is worth): the EGR shuts off by design whenever the atmospheric pressure drops off below right around 900-920 mBar which is about 1,000m/3,000ft above see level. I've observed this while driving up a few alpine passes while monitoring engine parameters with BMWhat.

I can't really help much as I've never investigate the behavior of our car when at altitude.

This may be a total swag but here's the letter that owners in the Denver area have received: http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/att...3&d=1397065738. Maybe your dealer can investigate with BMW if there is at all any link.

There has been also discussions on this board about people in the Denver area having problem ranging from NOx sensors to EGR: note that the two are very much interconnected. The EGR is used to reduce oxygen concentration in the intake air to lower peak combustion temperature that in turn reduces NOx emissions.

It's logical that the EGR rate is either directly affected by NOx reading or NOx reading are part of the adaptation adjustments to the EGR rate. Whenever adaptation is involved the parameter can move within a range and if for whatever reason (for example reading from the sensor affecting adaptation) the actual value falls outside said range an error is recorded.

The flow of the EGR, particularly the low pressure EGR, occurs because of a certain deltaP (differential in absolute pressure) between the exhaust side and intake side. If your intake pressure is lower the gasses will flow more for any given aperture of the valve.

Also very important is the way that the EGR rate is measure where again pressure plays a key role: the DDE controls the westgate to achieve a certain manifold pressure. Given the fixed size of the manifold such pressure is achieved with a certain quantity of air (adjusted by temperature and barometric pressure). It then turns around and check how much air has gone through the MAF. The delta between the two has come from the EGR system (ore some intake leaks).

As altitude increases, oxygen concentration decreases: oxygen affect NOx and EGR rate in various way. If there's less oxygen the combustion temperature is lower so you can use less EGR. In addition, the NOx sensor actually measures oxygen, not nitro oxides (there's a chemical reaction occurring inside the sensor where NOx is split between N2 and O2 and by measuring how much O2 comes out, it calculates the NOx that generated it). I've read studies that showed that altitude also have an impact on the amount of NOx produced during combustion.

I probably digressed, but you asked for ideas: hopefully I gave you some. Point really is that I'm starting to see a pattern between altitude and EGR/NOx trouble... Makes me really wonder is there is a glitch in the control system...
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Last edited by lpcapital; 07-17-2014 at 03:59 PM.
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  #4  
Old 07-17-2014, 02:13 PM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVITCH View Post
. Completed test plan with no defaults did clear codes and test drove OK.


vehicle opesrating as designed.
I assume you copied this? No faults, right? Your typo or theirs?

The Bolded part would definitely piss me off. This is boilerplate, lazy SA CYA garbage.

The car is NOT "operating as designed", unless BMW has designed cars to limp and throw codes as normal design parameters. I am sure Tri Cities has schmoozed you, but I dont like when there is anything in their record that seems to try and avoid blame. Just because the test plan passed does NOT mean the car is working properly- IN FACT, I would submit it is proof that the BMW test plan is inadequate to diagnose the underlying issue! NOT proof it is operating normally.

Semantics perhaps, and as long as they are working with you no need to be a dick. But gentle pressure, questions, etc, are called for so that pay attention and dont just try and send you on your way.

Definitely follow up on LPs link, and see what else has been reported at elevation...

GL
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  #5  
Old 07-17-2014, 10:24 PM
henrycyao henrycyao is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lpcapital View Post
Very interesting!!! Yet another diesel car showing EGR/NOx issues at altitude. That along with the Denver, CO special testing they are doing I'm wondering what's cooking...
I drove the x5 recently to Lake Tahoe CA, then enter Yosmite on the east side. X5 35D was able to drive through 9000 ft above sea level without trouble. Although, I do feel slower at passing car up on a hill. I on the other hand was starting to feel out of breath. I agree this is not an extended test by any means. This does not seem too much different than what OP wrote.
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  #6  
Old 07-17-2014, 10:28 PM
henrycyao henrycyao is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat_X5 View Post
Glad it's still under warranty.

Did you check the vehicle's history ?
Such a low mileage car for 3 years is suspect.

Was it possibly a buy back / lemon car ??

Let us know ?
Lemon car? I doubt it. BMW don't honor warranty in those cases. If it has gone through the legal hassle, it should have been black listed.

I am curious why it is that low mileage as well.
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  #7  
Old 07-18-2014, 02:34 PM
WolfgangGullich WolfgangGullich is offline
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So my '11 X5d did the same thing a couple months ago coming back from my inlaws (who live at 3500ft in the Sierras). The light came on going up there and turned off on the way home. Truck didn't have any issues with how it was running, in fact was totally normal.
Checked the engine codes with a scantool and the X had nothing saved in memory. I'm guessing this is the same exact issue related to elevation.
Weird thing is is that on 3 prior trips to their house, the light never came on.
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  #8  
Old 07-18-2014, 04:02 PM
ard ard is offline
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^^ what diesel scan tool?
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  #9  
Old 07-19-2014, 07:10 AM
WolfgangGullich WolfgangGullich is offline
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I just used an OBD scantool borrowed from a friend. You don't need a special BMW tool for this to read the codes
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  #10  
Old 07-19-2014, 09:57 AM
ard ard is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WolfgangGullich View Post
I just used an OBD scantool borrowed from a friend. You don't need a special BMW tool for this to read the codes
Ha. Actually no.

This may explain why you didn't read a code...
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  #11  
Old 07-19-2014, 12:22 PM
henrycyao henrycyao is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Ha. Actually no.



This may explain why you didn't read a code...

Does that mean only dealer can get the code or is that BMW scanner available for sale?


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  #12  
Old 07-19-2014, 04:14 PM
Duncanj2 Duncanj2 is offline
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Location: Naples FL. Mashpee MA
 
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Mein Auto: 2010x5
I have had bad luck with my 2010x5 diesel. I got a check engine light related to the SCR system at 37K, 45K, 57K miles. All required replacement of various components of the system. The dealer charged me $1260 to fix the last issue (out of warranty even though this is the third time they have replaced components on the system). Additionally, the car will only go about 5K miles before signalling I need to refill the system with the DES fluid. I had the fluid refilled at the 57K outage, again at 63.6K and today at 65.7K the check engine light is on again, undoubtedly the DES system. Either there is an issue with these systems, or my dealer ( Germain - Naples FL) doesn't really know what they are doing and have failed to identify the root cause of th problem, hence the repeating issues. Any one else having these problems or am I just saddled with a lemon or a incompetent dealer service organization ?

Jack Duncan
Naples FL
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  #13  
Old 07-19-2014, 11:46 PM
WolfgangGullich WolfgangGullich is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Ha. Actually no.

This may explain why you didn't read a code...
How do you figure? BMW has to adhere to international OBD standards which states fault codes must be able to be read. Any scanner will pull the codes but won't tell you what they mean...ie: just report back the alphanumerics which you can find the pdf lists for. BMWs store all fault codes even after the light goes out. You don't need BMW's dealer software just to see the codes
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  #14  
Old 07-20-2014, 08:52 AM
ard ard is offline
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Location: CA
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WolfgangGullich View Post
How do you figure? BMW has to adhere to international OBD standards which states fault codes must be able to be read. Any scanner will pull the codes but won't tell you what they mean...ie: just report back the alphanumerics which you can find the pdf lists for. BMWs store all fault codes even after the light goes out. You don't need BMW's dealer software just to see the codes
You want to believe that, knock yourself out.


Everyone else: only certain OBD codes are required in the USA (and the laws on diesel vs gas vary as well)... ALL the others are BMW proprietary.

Do your research...manufacturers like autogrnuity, etc, get a lot of $$$ for their European diesel software... Not because they tell you what it means, but because you won't see ANY proprietary codes without it.
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  #15  
Old 07-20-2014, 08:54 AM
ard ard is offline
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Location: CA
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duncanj2 View Post
I have had bad luck with my 2010x5 diesel. I got a check engine light related to the SCR system at 37K, 45K, 57K miles. All required replacement of various components of the system. The dealer charged me $1260 to fix the last issue (out of warranty even though this is the third time they have replaced components on the system). Additionally, the car will only go about 5K miles before signalling I need to refill the system with the DES fluid. I had the fluid refilled at the 57K outage, again at 63.6K and today at 65.7K the check engine light is on again, undoubtedly the DES system. Either there is an issue with these systems, or my dealer ( Germain - Naples FL) doesn't really know what they are doing and have failed to identify the root cause of th problem, hence the repeating issues. Any one else having these problems or am I just saddled with a lemon or a incompetent dealer service organization ?

Jack Duncan
Naples FL
You've been screwed by that dealer. There is NO WAY you should be paying for that ongoing issue.. Why haven't you escalated the issue to BMWNA and/or taken it elsewhere?!?!?!
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  #16  
Old 07-20-2014, 09:32 AM
henrycyao henrycyao is offline
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Location: Bay Area, California
 
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Mein Auto: BMW X5 35d
Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
You want to believe that, knock yourself out.


Everyone else: only certain OBD codes are required in the USA (and the laws on diesel vs gas vary as well)... ALL the others are BMW proprietary.

Do your research...manufacturers like autogrnuity, etc, get a lot of $$$ for their European diesel software... Not because they tell you what it means, but because you won't see ANY proprietary codes without it.
Do you mean autoenginuity? I can't seem to find autogrnuity.

Is this the right comany? http://www.autoenginuity.com/
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  #17  
Old 07-20-2014, 01:01 PM
WolfgangGullich WolfgangGullich is offline
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Location: Seaside, CA
 
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Mein Auto: 2011 X5 35d
Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
You want to believe that, knock yourself out.


Everyone else: only certain OBD codes are required in the USA (and the laws on diesel vs gas vary as well)... ALL the others are BMW proprietary.

Do your research...manufacturers like autogrnuity, etc, get a lot of $$$ for their European diesel software... Not because they tell you what it means, but because you won't see ANY proprietary codes without it.
Sons a' b....es
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