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2004 BMW X5 CDR EEPROM Full?

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2004 BMW X5 CDR EEPROM Full?

Post by Filterer » Thu Jun 23, 2016 4:53 am

Hi, I have a small dispute with my insurance company which I would love some help with!

The airbag issue light on my 2004 BMW X5 came on after a reasonably significant nose to tail where I was hit from behind, the airbags did NOT deploy however the light was definitely not on before the crash.

During the insurance claim process the BMW dealer attempted to reset the error code, however it was not a "soft" code that they could reset, their computer read an error "240 (F0) Control unit fault, internal", which they said the only way to repair was to replace the unit.

Upon more investigation I found multiple anecdotal references to the BMW SRS/MRS (which I believe is manufactured by Bosch) stating that after any "crash" above a significant level, regardless if the airbags have deployed or not will record into the CDR EEPROM and that the EEPROM can only fit three crashes before it is full. Of relevance is that the car was previously also involved in at least one other nose to tail while I have owned it, and quite probably had been in on in the 10 years before i owned it. There also appear to be companies in Russia/UK/USA that are able to reset the EEPROM and thus the CDR and recover a SRS/MRS in this state, however these are all on the other side of the world.

Unfortunately the insurance company has so far declined to cover fixing the issue as they say there is no way an airbag goes off in a rear collision, so how can the airbag module be involved, it must have already been faulty and I am just trying to claim it on insurance..... I have tried to explain the above but they have said I need to find a reputable source that states the above for them to look at it again.

I have done a LOT of googling but I can't find good reputable sources for the info I need, I am hoping an expert here could point me at some official bosch or bmw technical papers that might help my cause, specifically points to the following would be immensely useful:
    1. A CDR record is created even for rear end crashes with no airbag deployment (nor tensioner deployment)
    2. The EEPROM only stores up to 3 incidents and then will return an internal fault to standard dealer tools

The closet i have for evidence for this is:
However these aren't BMW or Bosch technical documents as far as I can tell, does anyone have any ideas on where i can find better information? I don't want to have to pay to replace the unit ~$1000 for a crash that wasn't my fault :x.

Thanks!

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Re: 2004 BMW X5 CDR EEPROM Full?

Post by Rusty Haight » Thu Jul 07, 2016 8:19 am

First, because I'm a stickler for semantics, there is no "CDR record." There is no "crash data recorder" but there appears to be at least a freeze frame recording capability associated with crashes in that unit. Bosch - while they DO make the Crash Data Retrieval (CDR) Tool - also make airbag control modules but that's from a different part of the company than the guys associated with crash data. From the 04 time frame, if we look to early GM or Chrysler crash data as the examples, it's likely the equivalent of what was called a DERM and it probably only "records" the indication that there was a crash and that certain system(s) were or might have been activated or deployed.

Having said all that, sure, it;'s reasonable that such a system would record something associated with a rear ender which has nothing to do with a frontal airbag. Many systems today have that capability AND record data associated with it.

Your best bet is to find a local mechanic OR go back to the original dealer who was going to fix it and have them read ALL the codes stored and explain what they mean and get that in some sort of report then go back to the insurance company with that. You've done some good work researching what you have and if you add to that something from a mechanic who regularly services that system, had read out the codes and can explain what they mean indicating there was nothing wrong with the module pre-crash, then (especially if it stored something from a rear ender) I can't see how they can avoid honoring the repair.

Best of luck!
- Rusty Haight
Collision Safety Institute


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