BMW X3 05 airbag light on (both dash and overhead are on), and finally choose Foxwell NT520 to do it well, it wins the pricy shop service and BlueDriver by Lemur & generic ELM. Which is worth to have for a DIY user.
Here we go for details.
Car model and year: BMW X3 05
Car Issue: an airbag light – both dash and overhead are on, so pointing to the passenger air bag
Tool to buy:
Foxwell NT520 BMW scanner (the seller already download the BMW software before shipping) and am happy with it.
The reason to Foxwell NT520:
1. Far away from the service shop and pricy for service: The dealer where I want an hour shop time ($130) just to read the code, which is v pricey if I need a 2nd read after any repair to reset the codes (I’m not interested in the kluge fix to bypass the sensor mat)
That leaves me looking for a way to check codes to try to pinpoint the fault location.
2. BlueDriver by Lemur and generic ELM can’t do.
I have a BlueDriver by Lemur as well as generic ELM clones that I run with IOS and Android Apps. They are OK on new cars, but all will only read basic codes on the BMW (the same as they do with other older cars in the family fleet – 98 Jag XJ8, 99 Suburban and 06 Saab 95).
Foxwell NT520 BMW X3 05 airbag light reset done
It has an impressive range of capabilities, far more than my other ELM 327 based apps, reading a large range of modules on the car and displaying many “hidden” codes – ie codes that don’t set any dash lamp errors.
2 features that came in especially handy were the airbag test and transfer case test functions.
The airbag test confirmed that the issue with the airbag was a faulty passenger seat mat sensor. The error can’t be reset without replacement (or putting in the kluge that masks the fault and makes the module think things are OK). As the issue is limited to the sensor only and the airbag is still functional, this gives some time to decide how / when to make the fix. At lest we know that the car has airbags in the event of a collision – all that will happen is the passenger bag will deploy even if the seat is empty.
More importantly, the transfer case tests showed that the fluid required change (code 54C6 was set). Once I decided to change it, this lead me to also pull the actuator motor on spec to make sure the gear wheel that has caused problems for many was OK (there were no codes that indicated it was bad). I’m glad I did as I found the gear was worn to the point it was only a matter of time until it failed to operate and the car defaulted to the limp home state when running the calibration routine (which it does on every shut down). Pic of the wear is att.
For these things alone, the tool has paid for itself.
2 thumbs up!
Thanks to KHRX3 (www.bimmerforums.com)