Production design on the BMW E53 X5 began in 1994, shortly after BMW purchased Land Rover. BMW wanted a sport utility vehicle of their own, and the idea was to craft an SUV that possessed both the sophistication of a BMW and the ruggedness of a Land Rover. Ultimately, BMW designers allowed the sophistication to hold greater sway and the company chose to market the E53 X5 not as a sport utility vehicle, but as a sport activity vehicle (SAV). Frustratingly, many owners of the E53 X5 report issues with water leaking into the cabin due to a faulty sunroof.
Most commonly, water begins leaking through the sunroof whenever it rains. In many instances small puddles collect in the glove compartment, and people frequently report water dripping from the sunroof switch. In some cars, however, the roof leaks so slowly that the problem doesn’t become apparent until a moldy smell begins settling over the interior.
The matter can be as simple as clogged drain tubes (commonly affecting cars parked underneath trees for long stretches of time), or as complex as a faulty sunroof cassette. There are also a multitude of seals and vapor barriers whose malfunction could cause the leaks. Because of the numerous possible culprits, attempting to pinpoint the exact trigger for the glitch can quickly become frustrating.
The longer the problem persists, the greater the chance of severe damage to the car’s electrical system. In a worse-case scenario, wires can short and cause a fire. In order to prevent significant harm, the best option is to bring the car to a local BMW service shop so they can adequately locate and fix the problem for you.
Search for a local, independent BMW repair shop with BMW mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the expense.