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Discussion Starter #1
Lucky me - diagnostic lights and the dealers service center tell me I have a transfer case problem. Of course dealer wants to replace it for $4500, and that's not my first choice.

There are tons of articles about replacing the stripped gear if there is a clicking souls when turning off the engine, but... no clicking.

So - any suggestions on how to diagnose the problem? Is a stripped gear so common that it's worth a $20 try or does the lack of clicking point me toward something else maybe easy, like changing fluid or a complete replacement.

Strange thing is I don't feel anything wrong with the car. There may be a very very small shudder when I accelerate but it's barely noticeable and could be something else of course. Its so small I could be imagining it.

Thanks for any help.
 

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Nuclear engineer
02/2012 X5 35d M57Y CPO 100K miles NOKIAN WR G3 20K miles
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18,231 Posts
What light(s)/DTC and symptoms, please?

In a word, the TC clutch is open at low speed as for maneuvering in a parking lot, and open at high speed, it is intermediate normally, and shut on DSC command. When the engine is shut off, the clutch is cycled to compare the actuator travel fully open and fully shut to the adapted values.

If the TC clutch is repositioning on acceleration then it may be a DSC error. A ten year old probably could use a pre-emptive fluid change with the differentials and AT.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Doug - thanks for the note.
Getting the Brake, ABS, & 4x4 lights all on.
I don't have any other symptoms. Maybe that slight shimmy on acceleration, but again, its so small I could be imagining it.
 

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Nuclear engineer
02/2012 X5 35d M57Y CPO 100K miles NOKIAN WR G3 20K miles
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18,231 Posts

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2004 E53 diesel
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What error is the dealer getting?

Finding out the error code and looking up may give a better idea of what needs doing. Unfortunately a lot of techs/mechanics these days just use the replace mentality rather than fix. You could end up replacing perfectly good parts until the the real problem is found.

I would ask them for a print out of the error codes and do your own research.
 

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It sounds to me like you could have the common transfer case gear problem. The clicking noise will be audible only once in a while, not every time the car is turned off. It clicked one day on my X5, and when I tried to record it on video it would not do it for days!

Here's a complete DIY video for replacing the plastic gear:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UR7Vv5SQvDc
 
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