How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Steve Your Own Question
Steve
Steve, BMW Expert
Category: BMW
Satisfied Customers: 23898
Experience:  BMW Expert
26942375
Type Your BMW Question Here...
Steve is online now

the back right tyre of my BMW X3 locked on the motorway,

Resolved Question:

Hello the back right tyre of my BMW X3 locked on the motorway, the man from the AA said it might be a problem with the differentials/ sensors at the back of the car within the car's computer.
We got a quote from the mechanic for £1080 saying he's not sure but he thinks he's solved the problem.
I think he's taking a punt, that he doesn't know the answer and if it's not what he says, the cost for me will spiral out of control.
Here's the quote below. Can you please tell me whether this sounds right of whether he's ripping me off.
Many thanks:
"Hi, further to my conversation a few minutes ago; The transfer actuation unit has an intermittent fault which needs to be eliminated before we go any further. This is a part that would have to be replaced if it turns out that the transfer box itself is at fault anyway so the easiest and cheapest option at the moment would be to change the cheaper of the two first (Actuator) We can get the part here from BMW by Wednesday. The part itself is £750 Inc of VAT and the labour to fit & programming is £336 Inc VAT. The total comes to £1086 We can have the car back to you by Thursday evening providing we order the parts by tomorrow morning and all goes according to plan.
Regards"
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: BMW
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.
What fault does he have that indicates the transfer case or actuator is bad?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The 4x4 light and the brake light is coming on when it's being driven. That's all.
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.

I will provide an honest answer. I trust this will be appreciated. Please remember that a low rating PUNISHES me for being honest and that I receive nothing for my time until a positive rating is clicked.

the transfer case splits power between the front axle and rear axle, it can't cause one wheel to lock up.

the diagnosis is wrong, take the vehicle elsewhere, to somebody that knows this vehicle well and has the proper skills and equipment to diagnose it.

Please let me know if you have further questions. Please do not forget to click a positive rating as this is the only way I receive credit for my answer, thank you. Best wishes with your vehicle.

Steve and other BMW Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
The right front tyre is a very worn down Pirelli that the AA man said needed replacing. The right rear is a brand new Pirelli. The back left tyre is a year old goodyear. The front left is a second hand budget tyre. Do you think this had any bearing on the 4x4 coming on and the car shuddering? It was a very hot day on hot motorway Tarmac. I changed the tyre pressure because we had lots of weight in the car. It began juddering so I changed the air pressure again to just more juddering. Could all of these things have factored into making this problem?
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.
Please do not forget to CLICK ON a positive rating.
It is very risky to run different tyres on each corner as they will spin at slightly different speeds which can cause issues for the differentials, the transfer case, the transmission and the wheel monitoring stability systems.
Running tyres as you have described is a recepie for disaster, really, you need to rectify this at once.
So yes, this could have contributed.
As the question has been answered, please kindly CLICK ON a positive rating.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
If I took the car back from this mechanic and got a new mechanic to put all new Pirelli tyres on, do you think having all new same tyres on would likely automatically correct the problem?
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.

Please do not forget to CLICK ON a positive rating.

it is possible that putting proper tyres on would correcet the issue immediately, but not terribly likely given that damage may have resulted from running different tyres already.

.

As the question has been answered, please kindly CLICK ON a positive rating.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you - damage to what?
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.

Please do not forget to CLICK ON a positive rating.

damage to the differential, transfer case, transmission or other part of the drive train

.

As the question has been answered, please kindly CLICK ON a positive rating.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you. Can you please advise me on where I could find a genuine directory of bmw approved mechanics in my area?
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I would be happy to do so, however, I have not yet received proper credit for answering the original question, via positive rating.
Once I receive proper credit for the original answer, which is complete, I will be happy to provide this info, free of additional charge.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Steve I just gave you an excellent rating and a tip. Sorry. I didn't understand the process. I have a new related development. The mechanic wants to charge me £80 including vat for diagnosing the problem and time spent on the vehicle. He may have spent time on the vehicle, even though his diagnosis is wrong. He also thinks his diagnosis is correct, or an important first step towards fixing the problem. Tomorrow I may be unable to take back the car without paying that £80. Should I dispute the £80 fee as the diagnosis is wrong (his argument being he knows what it is etc after spending time on it).
Expert:  Steve replied 2 years ago.

you cannot dispute the fee, he has spent time on the car and that is his hourly rate.

the only places that are "approved" to work on your car are main dealers, you can find a list here: http://content.bmw.co.uk/bmwuk/dealerlocator/

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you very much.

Related BMW Questions