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Old 06-20-2022, 10:39 PM
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 80
2004bmwx53i is on a distinguished road
Losing Brake Fluid - 2004 X5, 3i

I changed brake pads, rotors and calipers on all 4 wheels, bleeded the system starting from the furthest to the master cylinder, RR, to the closest, FL. Ever since then, I keep losing fluid a lot in spite of having a pretty good braking performance and hard brake pedal. The fluid in the reservoir keeps going down to the minimum level. No apparent leakage on the road. Once I fill the reservoir, it only takes a couple of miles or so before the red alarm comes on indicating low level of brake fluid. And starts again. I must have done this at least 3 or 4 times so far. Where the hell does the fluid go. Leakage in the booster would show inside the car on the driver side, but it's dry.

Any guidance would be much appreciated.
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Old 06-20-2022, 11:01 PM
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 601
Effduration is on a distinguished road
I would check bleed screws and brake hoses at each caliper because you just did it.

But the most common brake fluid leak is under the car, below the driver's seat behind the plastic cladding.. Remove a couple of rivets and screws to flex the cladding to get a look with a flashlight.

Also, your X5 is not a manual trans car is it? If it is, you could be losing brake fluid thru the clutch hydraulics.
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Old 06-21-2022, 04:30 PM
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Michigan
Posts: 325
ahlem is on a distinguished road
Any brake fluid in the vacuum hose coming off your brake booster?
Potential bad seal in the master cylinder with brake fluid getting sucked into the engine.
2001 x5 3.0, 1990 e30 M3, 1991 318is, 2002 325i, 2008 335i Dinan stage 3 6 speed,
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Old 06-22-2022, 01:00 AM
andrewwynn's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Racine, WI
Posts: 9,753
andrewwynn will become famous soon enough
That fast of leak almost certainly in the rear line under the left front seat. There is a design defect that causes this failure.

Mine blew out dramatically from a deer related fast stop. The panel well hold a lot of fluid before it drips out but usually it will puddle by the time the low fluid light comes on. I think your leak is slow enough your are just leaving drips along the way
2011 E70 N55 (me)
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Old 07-01-2022, 07:39 AM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 450
Russianblue is on a distinguished road
Originally Posted by Effduration View Post
I would check bleed screws and brake hoses at each caliper because you just did it.

look for fluid residue on the inside of your rims. I had this happen one time when I didn't tighten up a bleed valve sufficiently (always scared of stripping those things due to an incident years ago).

2005 X5 3.0i - 71k mi (9.2018) -> 81k (9.19) -> 100k 9.21
SOLD : ( 2003 X5 3.0 - 177k mi (9.2018) -> 186k (9.19) -> 205k (9.21)
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SOLD : ( 1988 528e w/ Bullseye s256 / MS2 Extra / GC Coilovers / Yukon Coils ~ 300+ HP
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Old 07-03-2022, 02:54 PM
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 1,554
cn90 is on a distinguished road
You are in Ontario Canada, so likely salt corrosion of the metal lines that run along the left side underchassis.

I wrote a DIY in this forum...
1998 E39 528i 5sp MT
2006 E53 X5 3.0 6sp MT
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Old 07-03-2022, 04:25 PM
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Location: Little Elm,Texas. (40 minutes North of Dallas)
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If it wasn't leaking prior to your work and the engine is running the same then check your work very carefully first.
X5 4.6 2002 Black Sap, Black interior. 2013 X5M Melbourne Red, Bamboo interior
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