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BMW X5 Maintenance and Repair



  • Have heard that the I drive is too hard to learn is this true? would love to hear real world experiences. also is there an issue with finding someone to replace the RFT tires or using a car with these?
  • anon3anon3 Posts: 147
    Is iDrive hard to learn? The answer, apparently, is that iDrive is hard to learn only if you're a journalist for an automotive magazine or for Consumer Reports. They complain incessantly about iDrive being too complicated, usually because they couldn't master it during their 20 minute test drive. A normal human being shouldn't have a problem with iDrive if they have basic computer experience.

    The truth is that you will not learn 100% of the iDrive functions the first time you drive the car, but you should be able to learn 75% of the features after a couple drives. The important features (like stereo controls) that you use every day are easy to learn and most of those features also are controlled by buttons on the dashboard or steering wheel. Beyond that, there will be a few obscure options that you don't need to use on a daily basis and you can look those up when you need them (like the ability to use iDrive to check engine oil levels while driving on the highway, or re-setting your tire pressure monitor).

    I've had several vehicles with iDrive since it first debuted. I like it because it provides extremely detailed control over the vehicle's features. It's great for people like me who want to configure the vehicle to my own personal preferences. But it requires some thought. You have to learn something new and there is a bit of a learning curve the first time you use it. Apparently, that's a problem for journalists.
  • anon3anon3 Posts: 147
    You asked about issues with run flat tires ("rft"). One drawback to run flats is that they can contribute to a stiff ride because the sidewalls are reinforced and tend to be stiffer than a regular tire. Once you drive on them flat, they usually are damaged and have to be replaced. Cars with run flat tires usually ship with a convenience spare and not a full-sized spare. They are slightly more expensive to replace than regular tires.

    But you don't need special equipment or skills to mount run flats on a wheel. You can replace run flat tires with regular tires (as long as they're the correct spec), so you aren't required to use them forever on a car the has run flats as original equipment.
  • mimsmims Posts: 1
    was driving along in my X5 when suddenly without warning my accelerator died on me i had no power at all it has been on the diagnostic machine @ BMW but cannot find the fault.Also when they pulled out the dip stick oil shoots into the air. any one know y ?
  • My wife drives a 2004 X5 which we bought new and have never had a problem with in about 50,000 miles. I seldom drive the car but when I do I use my own key. Recently I get in the car and my key will turn in the column and lights, radio, air all come on but engine makes no attempt to start, it acts as if the battery were dead at that point. I remove my key and use hers, and the car starts immediately, no problem. By chance I have learned if I start the car with her key, I can immediately turn it off, replace with my key and it starts fine. I drive for 5 minutes or as of yesterday, a 3 hour 200 mile trip, and once I stop the car and remove the key, it will not restart the car unless I first use her key to start, then remove and replace with mine. Anyone seen anything like this? Is it a key issue or security system? Thanks, dh
  • cefuscefus Posts: 45
    Sounds as if you have a dead battery in your key. Your key worked at one time right?, I know the keys should recharge after being in the switch for awhile,but maybe you have let it get too low. Its like a car battery,let it get too low and it will never take a charge. hope this helps
  • cefuscefus Posts: 45
    If the seat occupanct sensor in the driver seat has gone out, then the car will not move. Have the dealership look in the DXC for the driver seat occupancy. If the car is in drive and you raise your bum out of the seat the car will go into park.
  • Dude - I just picked up my 2008 X5. iDrive is one of the MAIN REASONS I purchased this car.

    I looked at Suburbans and Hummers (H1, H2, H3), I own a Land Rover, I looked at Nissan Armada and at the Mercedes GL and ML.

    After the iDrive - the other systems were a joke. The Audi was the WORST. It had what seemed to be hundreds of buttons in the center console by the shifter which lit up when pressed and that changes the function of other knobs and dials. I would have crashed looking at that.

    The iDrive is like a mouse. You can move it like a joystick, rotate it to go thru lists and then press it in to select. SOooooooo Easy. I agree with the other comment that ONLY THE PRESS seems to not like it.

    Get the X5 FOR the iDrive. It's great.
  • Thanks Cefus. I didn't realize that could/would happen with that key not being in use but looking through the manual, it looks like you are probably right. Thanks again.
  • Hi there - I'm going through the same issues with my '05 4.4i.
    Wondering if the new transmission resolved your issues. What did you need to do in order to have them replace the unit.


  • jvicjvic Posts: 1
    I had a check engine light as well. Checked the code's (don't remember numbers) but it was "lean fuel trim bank 1 & 2. The problem eventually cleared itself. I think I put regular octane gas at fill up. Hope this helps someone in the future.

  • While in the manual carwash, my wife was inside the vehicle in the front passenger seat and at one point I tried to open the driver's door which I found to be locked. My wife tried to unlock it using the door release button on te console several times while I was trying unsuccessfully to open it, till I realized something had happened and the handle no longer worked to open the door - does anyone have a refernce manual on how to repair the door handle?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 61,776
    I think what you need is some instructions on how to remove the door panel. Once that is off, you should be able to see the problem.

    I can get you at least to removing the door panel. Looks like you have to be real careful with the airbag and the door handle light wires.

    Unfortunately it doesn't say how to remove the door handle but that's probably just some bolts or allen bolts after you remove the actuators, cut the moisture barrier (which you must re-tape) and get the air bag out of the way.

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  • Hello. My 2002 X5 suddenly stopped blowing air from the vents for both heating and AC. The I am wondering could it be just a fuse?? The lights on the instrument panel for the heat/ac are illuminated, but no air comes out. Any suggestions??
  • jendresjendres Posts: 2
    Please does anyone out there know if there is meant to be a check you can do on your turbo. Mine has recently blown and when I asked what had caused it to go I received a reply of "wear and tear" which is understandable. When I questioned them that my car had just been in for a service why was the turbo not checked, the reply was "we do not check turbo's, we wait for them to go and replace them" At my cost as the car is out of service plan. Please can anyone tell me if this is indeed BMW's way of doing things.


  • lion2000lion2000 Posts: 22
    This happened to my 2001 X5 after 55K miles. Dealer took care of it with no charge. It was the Reostat that adjust the fan speed blown out. Happen to many X5 for some reason.
  • jendresjendres Posts: 2
    Does anyone know if an auxilary fan not working would contribute to a turbo blowing ?
  • rfightrfight Posts: 4
    I have a 2007 X5, when I try to play a DVD on the rear entertainment system I get a message that I have the wrong country code. Went through the dealership for repair but they said their dvd worked. I rented a dvd this weekend and it still gave me the same error. Any suggestions. I have another appointment with the dealer to check it out again but don't really want to take it in for something this silly.
  • cefuscefus Posts: 45
    Is this the new or old version of the X5?
  • cefuscefus Posts: 45
    No it does not effect the turbo, this fan is for cooling of engine and water.
  • cefuscefus Posts: 45
    take your dvd with you, when you go to the dealer and see if they can get it to play.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 61,776
    You didn't mention the year of your vehicle.

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  • kris2kris2 Posts: 40
    Hi Group,

    I am new to BMW and this group with the purchase of a 2005 3.0 X5. The dealer has not yet given me all the manuals as we closed the deal late saturday night. I am wondering if someone can let me know if there is a lock on the steering wheel adjustment. I try the lever that is supposed to work but it does not tilt or telescope, maybe it is not working or maybe it has been locked with the seat adjustment, I am not sure and wanted to check. I tried looking at the manual online but did not figure it out. I will be seeing the dealer tomorrow but any help meanwhile is much appreciated.

    Thanks in advance
  • Please help me!!! Convinced it could go offroad, i took my x5 up and down some steep dirt hills in my area to test out the hill descent, and at the bottom were some HUGE potholes that were impossible to get around. when i went through them, i could feel the bottom hit the ground and a huge THUD. now, whenever i accelerate moderatley (pedal atleast half in) there is definate reverberation felt through the gas pedal and a noise in the in the engine or exhaust or somewhere when i accelerate (i have a 4.4i by the way, 2004) that definatley wasnt there before, it used to run much more smoothly. Please help!! Have i just completeley ruined my car, or has something just come loose?!?!?! I looked at the undercarriage and couldnt see any damage, so now im freaking out because i JUST bought the car. Please, if anyone has any idea what might have happened to my car please help!
    Thanks so much!!
  • mrb5mrb5 Posts: 1
    I have a 2004 X5 due for the 100k service. Dealer is talking about $900.00 to get it done, that seems high. Does that sound correct?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    The Edmunds Maintenance Guide will tell you what BMW says should be done and what it should cost in your zip code.

    The dealer probably is suggesting that more services be done, and you may decide some of them are worth it - just keep in mind that upselling on scheduled maintenance is a big profit center for the dealer.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 61,776
    You might have bent a wheel or an axle shaft. Needs to go on a lift to see what's what.

    If there are optional skid plates for your car, I'd get 'em if you plan more offroad adventures.

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  • sherigsherig Posts: 1
    Has anyone any knowledge of fires in a 2004 X5? (or other years/models) I had the LCM Module replaced twice within weeks to correct lights not working after strong burning smell. Service report says "Internal short circuit in lamp control module". About 2 weeks after the second replacement - the car caught fire with the engine off and key out as well as lights off. The alarm went off 3 times before the fire started. BMW is sending an investigator to determine cause yet keep inferring the fire may not be related to part. Can you give me any information?
  • Hi All -
    The engine oil level on my 2008 X5 4.8 is low and I've read that BMW prefers Castrol. A search in the BMW manual and online showed SAE grade 5W-30 is preferred and/or approved. But when I got to the auto shop the attendants said that 5W-30 may not be thin enough for 08 X5 and suggested 0W-40.

    Which do I go with? There's 7928 miles on the car and I'll be adding another 800 miles or so with a trip to Northern California and I haven't yet taken the car in for service. The BMW sales guy told me the car would indicate when it needed service, but I'm skeptical about this too.

    Any feedback appreciated, thanks!
  • coupedncalcoupedncal Posts: 252
    Why not stop by your dealer and they will top off per manufacturer recommendation? You have already paid for free maint. on this car so why not let them worry about it?
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