This is followup on my BMW X3 E83 2008 transfer case saga. Here is recap:

  1. The dashboard had BMW triad of lights in dashboard. I replaced the nylon gear in transfer case actuator servo motor and lights disappeared. However, now the rear wheels started to skid at slow, sharp turns.
  2. Replaced the transfer case fluid. It helped a lot with alleviating rear wheel skidding. However, the rear wheels were still skidding on very sharp, slow turns.
  3. Connected with BMW's ISTA/D to re-calibrate transfer case. This almost eliminated any rear wheel skidding unless engine gets to operational temperatures.

I am trying to understand why temperature appears to have an impact on wheels skidding (transfer case viscosity? AWD is disabled while engine is cold? Metal expanding in transfer case? Perhaps something completely else?)

  • Have you checked for any error codes? with a quality reader...
    – Solar Mike
    Feb 22, 2019 at 8:23

1 Answer 1


This sounds like it's a differential problem. Rear wheels slipping in turns means they are forced to rotate at the same velocity, so slippage is the only means to alleviate the torque applied to the axles by uneven velocities. Have you checked the differential oil level? The temperature effect can possibly be accounted for by the oil viscosity OR a sensor somewhere losing contact, regaining it under thermal expansion and then sending bad information.

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