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  #1  
Old 05-23-2012, 08:34 AM
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BMW X5 2005 transfer case issue

Hello

I have had lights on the instrument panel come on, the abs and the 4 x 4 light. I got the car checked and put on a diagnostic and it came back with:

5F39 - transfer case internal error.

I was wondering if anyone had any ideas of what the cause of this may be.

The car is a 3.0d 2005 X5.

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 05-23-2012, 10:34 AM
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I would check the actuator. Transfer case actuator.

I just had this problem. Turned out that the plastic gear in it, get worn down. I took the actuator off, and flipped the gear 180 degrees. Been working fine for a bit.

When you shut the car off, do you hear a clanking noise from underneath, like a clack, clack, clack? That was my symptom.
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:57 PM
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Thanks for the reply.

Im not sure if this noise is present as i have not been driving the car really, I will check over the weekend for the noise. It does seem like what your describing is a common issue with the X5's.

Will report back once ive had a listen.
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:07 PM
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Agree with SlickGT1. Same 2005 3.0d and it just happend to me.

But my codes actually showed Transfer Actuator error (I wasnt getting your error)

Your error actually means Clutch Position unknown which is generally because the actuator isnt working.

Search this forum for transfer case actuator and there are a few good posts.

As SlickGT1 mentions, with the car running, turn off the ignition, listen for a clunk from under the car. If you hear it, it is definetly the gears slipping in the actuator. The actuator always resets itself when the ignition is turned off and you shouldnt hear a clunk.
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Old 05-24-2012, 06:39 PM
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Thanks for your input rb0135.

I am going to have a good listen when I get back home tomorrow. I will listen out for the gear slipping described in many of the posts that I have searched and what you have mentioned.

I have a feeling that it must be this but I have read posts where it has turned out to be the clutches in the transfer box, so you never know.

I think I remember my mate mentioning, when checking with the diagnostics tool, that the steering angle sensor code did appear. We cleared all the codes and then upon restarting the same transfer case code reappeared immediately, the steering angle one did not, however I did not drive the car after this. I will drive the car again and then recheck what codes reappear.
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Old 05-24-2012, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nash View Post
Thanks for your input rb0135.

I am going to have a good listen when I get back home tomorrow. I will listen out for the gear slipping described in many of the posts that I have searched and what you have mentioned.

I have a feeling that it must be this but I have read posts where it has turned out to be the clutches in the transfer box, so you never know.

I think I remember my mate mentioning, when checking with the diagnostics tool, that the steering angle sensor code did appear. We cleared all the codes and then upon restarting the same transfer case code reappeared immediately, the steering angle one did not, however I did not drive the car after this. I will drive the car again and then recheck what codes reappear.
Usually the code will appear straight away as when starting (or turning the key to pos2), the actuator goes through a reset position and if it finds the same fault, then the codes (and lights) will be thrown straight away. Mine did anyway..

Remember if you change the actuator yourself, you really need to be able to run the reprograming of the controller. This is usually done through DIS/GT1 as you need to clear out the "learnt" codes from the old unit plus the unit has a resistor pack that the controller computer needs to be reset for. People say they didnt need to do the repair function, but, you do have to. I didnt have time to do my actuator, my indy did it, and only did part of the programming. The car was still running strange, so I hooked my DIS/GT1 up, ran the Repair program, heard the actuator go through a series of movements, cleared the learnt min/max values and completed ok. Took it straight away for a drive and it was so much different to before it was re-programmed.
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Old 05-29-2012, 08:31 AM
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I had a good listen over the weekend and I could not hear any clicking sounds from underneath the car when switching off.

Does this noise always occur/present when the transfer case actuator is worn?

Now I am thinking it may be something else?

I have left the car at friends garage after driving it over the weekend so he can check if the steering angle sensor code reappears and for him to investigate further.

It seems to be driving ok with no noises etc. Anyone have any other ideas?
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Old 05-29-2012, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nash View Post
I had a good listen over the weekend and I could not hear any clicking sounds from underneath the car when switching off.

Does this noise always occur/present when the transfer case actuator is worn?

Now I am thinking it may be something else?

I have left the car at friends garage after driving it over the weekend so he can check if the steering angle sensor code reappears and for him to investigate further.

It seems to be driving ok with no noises etc. Anyone have any other ideas?
If you have that error on your dash. The actuator is disabled and it will not do that clicking sound. If that error goes away, and then when you shout down, it will click.

It is really 3 bolts to get that thing off. When you take it apart, you will see if the gears are stripped. Mark the actuator plastic gear before you pull its motor off. Google this issue. You will see what I mean. The actuator motor has a worm gear, and when you pull it out it will turn the plastic "worn gear". So mark that on the actuator body before you pull the motor out. Then flip it 180 degrees, so mirror to what you marked, and re-insert the motor. If it works, you won't have any errors right away.

When you take out the motor, look through the hole, and you will see if the teeth on the plastic gear are round, as in shaved by the worm gear.
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Old 05-29-2012, 02:20 PM
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I understand. As you say it's not that big of a job to get it out. I'll get it out and have a look.

Thanks for your input.
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  #10  
Old 05-29-2012, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by nash View Post
I understand. As you say it's not that big of a job to get it out. I'll get it out and have a look.

Thanks for your input.
Yea it is literally 3 bolts, a tiny bolt, and a plug. As a matter of fact, search actuator and my name, you will see a sort of write - up that I did. Really easy to get it out. Easier than taking off 20" wheels and putting them back on.
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