BMW is conducting a voluntary safety recall of certain 2009 and 2010 BMW X5 diesel SUVs to fix a potential problem with the fuel filter heater.
A notice on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website puts the number of vehicles potentially affected by the recall at 1,540. Affected vehicles are BMW X5 xDrive35d SUVs built from June 13, 2009 through November 13, 2009.
According to the NHTSA bulletin, “the fuel filter heater, which is used for warming up the diesel fuel during vehicle operation at low outside temperatures, could experience an electrical overload condition and become permanently activated.”
Documentation from BMW (PDF) submitted to the NHTSA indicates that permanent activation of the fuel filter heater could result in a drained battery. The automaker said that, in most cases, it would not be possible to start the vehicle because of the dead battery. In rare cases, “the unit could overheat and eventually lead to a vehicle fire.”
The automaker said it discovered the problem in early 2012 after receiving 16 “possibly-related” field reports in non-U.S. markets, but no field reports in the U.S. An additional six field reports were received in early 2013 in non-U.S. markets.
BMW said it has not received any reports of accidents or injuries related to this issue.
What BMW will do
BMW will notify owners and dealers will replace the fuel filter heater. The service will be performed at no charge. The BMW safety recall is expected to begin in August 2013.
In the meantime, owners of 2009 and 2010 BMW X5 diesel SUVs with any questions or concerns may contact BMW at 1-800-525-7417.
Alternatively, owners of vehicles involved in the campaign may contact NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 or go to http://www.safercar.gov. Reference the NHTSA campaign ID No. 13V339000.