AWD & DSC Malfunction In BMW – Explained

AWD & DSC Malfunction In BMW – Explained

The BMW AWD and DSC systems increase traction in your luxury vehicle.

While these systems can make your BMW easier to handle, you must be aware of essential precautions to ensure optimal function.

How To Fix AWD & DSC Malfunction In BMW Troubleshooting Guide

BMW has its unique method of handling four-wheel drive and stability controls.

When AWD or DSC malfunctions, it can result in decreased control or unsafe operation of the vehicle.

If your BMW has an AWD and DSC malfunction, stay calm because you can fix it.

Whether the problem occurs randomly or constantly, read this guide to diagnose and fix the problem.

In this article, we’ll look at AWD and DSC malfunction in BMW and how to fix them yourself.

AWD And DSC Malfunction In BMW

Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)

The DSC system, or Dynamic Stability Control, is integral to your BMW’s features.

This system holds the forefront in preventing driver error while driving and is responsible for keeping the car skidding in specific situations.

Suppose you have driven a car with a DSC failure. It would help if you repaired it as soon as possible to prevent severe damage.

DSC is an essential safety feature that you should never disable in your car.

However, when this feature malfunctions, it can leave you susceptible to accidents and other problems.

The BMW Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system will alert you with a “DSC OFF” message on the dashboard if there’s an issue.

There are many potential causes of DSC malfunction in BMW vehicles.

The Automatic Stability Control (DSC) system works to ensure constant speed. When this system malfunctions, it could cause your vehicle to lose control.

Malfunctions of the DSC become apparent in two ways, first in malfunction warnings and secondly through the vehicle’s speed.

Advanced All-Wheel-Drive (AWD)

The advanced all-wheel-drive (AWD) system incorporated in BMW vehicles can help you get going and keep moving through mud and snow.

In some models, it is beneficial in slushy road conditions and when driving over moderate off-road terrain.

Suppose your car has a four-wheel-drive system. In that case, you will be alerted to AWD malfunction in the driving mechanism.

The AWD warning light illuminates when you start your BMW to let you know that one of the components in the all-wheel-drive system has been unable.

The AWD and DSC could also fail without warning.

The most obvious sign of AWD and DSC malfunction in BMW is that the warning light will illuminate your dashboard, alerting you that something is amiss.

However, these warning messages are common and may indicate a faulty sensor which needs repairing.

What Causes AWD And DSC Malfunction In BMW?

When your four-wheel drive (AWD) or dynamic stability control (DSC) warning light comes on, you may wonder what happened to cause these issues.

When the Service AWD message appears in the Driver Information Center (DIC), the AWD system may not be functioning correctly.

If it is blinking yellow or red, contact your dealer for service.

If you have a BMW vehicle, you may experience one of these two problems at some point:

  • The All-Wheel-Drive Malfunction (AWD) message on your dashboard
  • The DSC Malfunction light that comes on when DSC is deactivated

These two BMW problems are very similar, but each has its specific causes. However, you should have an expanded outlook to diagnose problems.

Even though numerous reasons could cause AWD and DSC to malfunction in BMW, let’s start at the beginning.

AWD & DSC Malfunction In BMW

Low Brake Fluid

If you are experiencing AWD and DSC malfunction in BMW, the cause may be that your car is low on brake fluid.

It simply means the brake fluid level in your vehicle is below the minimum limit.

The overall pressure on your brakes is reduced, which causes your DSC system to malfunction.

The DSC system allows the vehicle to stabilize itself by modulating engine power to apply the brakes to one set of wheels.

If you notice a sudden increase in steering wheel shudder during braking, or if the car jerks when braking, it could leak one or more brake hoses.

Replacing low brake fluid as soon as possible reduces the risk of a crash resulting from loss of vehicle control due to a failed DSC system.

Leaks In Brake Fluid

One of the causes for an AWD malfunction or DSC failure can be leaking brake fluid.

When there is not enough brake fluid in your BMW’s tank, the brakes and steering become dysfunctional, which is dangerous when driving on the road.

You can check this by opening up the hood and locating your brake master cylinder.

You can also check for a brake warning light indicating that you are low on brake fluid.

Bad Wheel Speed Sensor

One of the causes for the AWD and DSC malfunction warning is if the wheel speed sensor needs replacement.

The wheel speed sensor is responsible for monitoring whether or not your tires are spinning correctly.

Suppose this sensor gets damaged in any way. In that case, it will not accurately assess the rotation of your vehicle, leading to DSC malfunction.

Sensor replacement is a complicated job that you should never attempt to do yourself.

DSC System Needs To Be Reset

Sometimes, the DSC system in your BMW may need to be reset so that it can return to its normal function.

If your car gives you a DSC malfunction message, you should first check for any error codes.

If there are no error codes, you will need to follow the directions in your manual on resetting the system.

Poor Battery Connection

You may have a problem with your car’s battery connections. If the battery connections are corroded or loose, it can cause AWD or DSC malfunction in BMW.

If the battery is not secured correctly, there may be insufficient power to operate the car’s electrical system.

Do not attempt to fix your car battery yourself because of the risk of electrocution and damaging your BMW’s electrical system.

How To Fix AWD & DSC Malfunction In BMW?

BMW drivers should bring their cars in for oil changes and other scheduled maintenance checks.

Regular service will prevent DSC system failure and preserve the car’s longevity.

If a warning light comes on while driving, there may be a problem with the AWD system.

You should reduce your speed and have your vehicle checked by a mechanic as soon as possible.

Driving on dry hard surface roads in the LOCK mode may overload the powertrain and cause AWD and DSC malfunction in BMW cars.

If your vehicle is experiencing a failure of the AWD or DSC systems, bring it in to be serviced promptly.


AWD and DSC malfunction in BMW is an electronic system failure. The warning system is not automatic or mechanical in any way.

You should be able to drive the car along with the AWD and DSC malfunction warning lights.

The Service All-Wheel Drive warning and indicator light is a good indicator that something is wrong.

However, it doesn’t allow you to interpret the problem unless you have the proper training and tools.

As you can see, all BMW models have a different set of requirements and features that they must meet.

That’s why it’s essential to keep up with the maintenance schedule for your particular car.