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Do-It-Yourself H.Q.
Share your DIY projects or ask questions about how to fix something on your own. Help fellow Bimmerfest members improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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  #251  
Old 10-17-2012, 11:29 AM
Assimilator1 Assimilator1 is offline
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Mein Auto: BMW 330d E46 11/2001
Who said the original oil isn't available??

I bought the genuine Esso stuff from a VW parts wholesaler (much cheaper than BMW!) a couple of months ago .
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  #252  
Old 01-22-2013, 09:01 PM
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AlboBMW AlboBMW is offline
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A big thank you to all of you who have participated and helped make this a great thread. Thank you especially to OP for his research and hard work.
I did this job this past weekend, and I can't tell you how nasty and grimy the "lifetime" fluid was. I got so dirty changing the fluid that I didn't have time to take pics. My cas has 162K miles. I noticed smoother shifting after the fluid change.

I used Valvoline MaxLife.

Once again, thank you all.
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  #253  
Old 01-22-2013, 09:08 PM
shroomer shroomer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlboBMW View Post
A big thank you to all of you who have participated and helped make this a great thread. Thank you especially to OP for his research and hard work.
I did this job this past weekend, and I can't tell you how nasty and grimy the "lifetime" fluid was. I got so dirty changing the fluid that I didn't have time to take pics. My cas has 162K miles. I noticed smoother shifting after the fluid change.

I used Valvoline MaxLife.

Once again, thank you all.
Totally.

I have 154000 miles. I did an oil and filter change at about 70k miles. I drained and filled a few times since then.
As far as the tranny goes, all has been good.
I have used Valvoline MaxLife everytime.
Apparently I am getting a bad torque converter seal code. I am curious if the Valvoline caused the bad torque converter seal. Anyone else have this issue with a Valvoline fluid change?

In any case, my tranny is still good. So that's cool. I just erase the code with my scanner and it stays gone for several hundred miles. So I guess I'll just drive until I have a real issue.

But thanks for this thread!!! Well done.
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  #254  
Old 01-23-2013, 08:51 PM
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AlboBMW AlboBMW is offline
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Location: Norman, OK
 
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Mein Auto: '01 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by shroomer View Post
Totally.

I have 154000 miles. I did an oil and filter change at about 70k miles. I drained and filled a few times since then.
As far as the tranny goes, all has been good.
I have used Valvoline MaxLife everytime.
Apparently I am getting a bad torque converter seal code. I am curious if the Valvoline caused the bad torque converter seal. Anyone else have this issue with a Valvoline fluid change?

In any case, my tranny is still good. So that's cool. I just erase the code with my scanner and it stays gone for several hundred miles. So I guess I'll just drive until I have a real issue.

But thanks for this thread!!! Well done.
Sounds like a common issue from the replies in this thread: http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum....php?t=1566841
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  #255  
Old 04-26-2013, 12:12 AM
irrogical irrogical is offline
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Mein Auto: e46
Transmission warning light

I got the dreaded phone cal from my wife: there's a light on in the dash, what do I do?

It was the transmission fault light, and she limped the car home. I replaced all the fluid I drained out without dropping the pan, and the light went out. In the mean time I ordered a filter, gasket, and new bolts from the dealer.

The filter etc came in this week, and I was planning to drop the pan and do a full change in a couple weeks when the weather warms up some. Unfortunately the car had other ideas, and illuminated the warning light again today. I have done the filter and new fluid (6.5 qts went in, probably 6.25 staayed in), trouble is the warning light did not reset this time. Anyone have any idea how to reset the light? Or better, read the code?

Just to be clear, this is the exclamation point inside the gear next to the D; the service engine soon light is off.

We have a 2003 325 with the ZF transmission, and 105k miles.

Side note, even with the old filter, the drained fluid tonight was much redder than the first set, about 100 miles ago.

Big thanks to T-W for the original post, it was much better than Uncle Bentley's coverage

--roger
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  #256  
Old 04-26-2013, 06:30 AM
tblt44 tblt44 is offline
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Mein Auto: vette
The original fluid should be carmel color like motor oil. At least it is on the GM transmissions. The red stuff is ok as long as its designed for your ZF transmission. What fluid did you us
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  #257  
Old 04-29-2013, 06:16 AM
irrogical irrogical is offline
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I used the Valvolene max life fluid - still has the Esso comparability label on the quart bottle; I have a Zf 5HP19.

I called the dealer today on my way to work, I am of course being 'blamed' for changing filter. I told home light was on before filter change, and that mollified them. Apparently my 'codes' are internal transmission faults - ouch!

He couldn't remember what the codes are so of course that's no help to me. Sounds like I'm going to need a good Indy in Boston / Metro-West soon.

--roger
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  #258  
Old 04-29-2013, 06:51 AM
tblt44 tblt44 is offline
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Is the transmission functioning better now with the fluid change?
A new trans is big money.You may find a shop to get you a used one about 1500 or rebuild yours.
First you may want to try getting the light reset to see if the fluid change helped.
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  #259  
Old 04-30-2013, 09:20 AM
irrogical irrogical is offline
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Codes were 31,35, 36: internal slipping. The input shaft and output shafts are not turning in the proper ratio. Having called a couple people so far, sounds like a new tranny is the way to go cost wise. People don't sound like they want to rebuild a Zf, they just replace it. (That includes a transmission specialty place.). I have prices of 1600 for a used on w/ 6 months warranty and 2950 for a reman with 12 months. Both unlimited miles. I am being told +/- 9 hours labor for a straight swap. Looks like I'm in it for about $4k, which is still less than the dealer wants for the transmission alone albeit with 2 yr warranty

--roger
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  #260  
Old 04-30-2013, 09:23 AM
irrogical irrogical is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tblt44 View Post
Is the transmission functioning better now with the fluid change?
Seemed to me like everything was fine until the light came on. I can't tell a difference in how it drives before or after the new fluid or new fluid and filter.

--roger
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  #261  
Old 05-10-2013, 03:29 AM
firefoto firefoto is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 325ic
AT service & coolant lines replacement

When I bought my car, the transmission blew the front transmission seal within a month of purchase. Although not covered by warranty, the seller replaced the transmission with another est 120k trans at no charge. 2 years later the trans coolant line hoses are leaking and need replacement. The hoses were rubbing against the sway bar and were seeping there but were also seeping from the swage fittings on their ends. It looked like an engine oil leak since the fluid was brown. I figured the valve cover was leaking but when we hoisted it, we found no leaks from the engine and lots of trans fluid under the car. Scary since you can't check the fluid level. My oil change service guy wasn't checking the fluid so we could have been low on trans fluid.

I work at an adult career center and had my ASE class do the work. Your description was spot on for the trans service.
Replacing the lines was very difficult. Don't try to do this without a lift. You'll go crazy! Tough to remove the lines and even tougher to install new ones. The quick connects did not disconnect, plastic release collars disintegrated so we had to destroy the retainer tabs in the connectors. Snaking the lines over the rack and around everything else was difficult...but can be done. Install and remove from the rear.
We used Mercon V Valvoline, 6.25 qts. Bought a fluid vacuum hand pump at NAPA for $13 to pump it in. Had to put smaller fuel line hose into the pump hose to fit into fill hole in trans. Remove cap of pump to fill with Mercon. Screw lid back on and pump into trans. Easy but slow.
My instructor is a diesel & HD truck service mechanic and runs a large truck service facility. He is very familiar with transmissions. Said watch out for chunks in the trans pan, are pieces of the lock up plate disintegrating. I had a couple. Said Mercon V is a full synthetic fluid used in all the newer transmissions and the bottle says replacement for Ford trans fluid and Dexron III.
My transmission had a green sticker on it.
Took about 1.5 nights of 3 hours classes to do all this while instructing the students.
The transmission is running perfectly. The car has 140k on it and about 130k on transmission. I will be having the class do transmission service on all my vehicles. After seeing the trans filter almost plugged, and the off color fluid coming out, I believe this condition would have shortened the life of the transmission considerably.
BTW, instructor believes this is a European Ford transmission. The filter had a Ford part number.

Thanks so much for the detail on how to service and fill the transmission! It took about 4 quarts before we started it and another 2.25 quarts after we started, ran through gears and left in idle and neutral.
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  #262  
Old 06-17-2013, 04:56 PM
Augster Augster is offline
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So the inlet transmission oil cooler line broke and I drove the car approximately 5 minutes/5 miles before truly realized what was happening with the tranny warning light coming on. The dealer wanted $1,200 to replace the oil cooler and busted line, but doesn't know the status of the transmission (they can smell burnt transmission fluid in the transmission). After getting towed back, I'm going to replace the cooler and line myself, but also do a complete filter and fluid change, and just hope for the best.

Since the last meaningful comments on ATF were made between 3 to 4 years ago, with Valvoline Maxlife (Dexron/Mercon) heavily recommended then, if not selecting the more expensive OEM Esso LT 71141 (I have the A5S 325Z tranny). Do these recommendations still hold true (Valvoline Maxlife and Esso LT) as the ATF to use? If Valvoline Maxlife has proven to meet or exceed BMW specifications by now, then I'd go for it.
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  #263  
Old 06-20-2013, 06:07 PM
firefoto firefoto is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 325ic
been driving the 325 for over a month since the fluid change and it seems to be running just fine. Unfortunately a fluid leak developed but this time it's in the high pressure line to the power steering pump. Probably was there all the time but the transmission hose leak was far more leakage. So we'll replace that too. Then maybe we'll have a dry bottom!
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  #264  
Old 06-22-2013, 09:39 PM
Duane Sagar Duane Sagar is offline
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hi everyone i have an04 x5 with zfga6-hp26 trans can any one tell me for sure what trans oil was put in this from new, the vehicle is comong up to 100 thousand miles and i want to do an oilchange (bmw dealer told me not to do it that it would cause problems)
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  #265  
Old 09-25-2013, 07:06 AM
adaseb adaseb is offline
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Mein Auto: 2002 BMW 320i
Should it be in PARK or NEUTRAL?
Been a while since I checked my tranny fluid and can't remember.

When I changed the filter and fluid, I remember leaving the transmission in NEUTRAL when refilling.

Reading some guides on here saying it should be left in PARK.

It makes a difference. Because in PARK there is more fluid coming out of the fill plug rather then in NEUTRAL.

So if I go according to NEUTRAL I might have a little too much fluid. Going according to PARK, I might have a little less fluid.

Big Pain checking this fluid. Took me an entire hour almost to raise the vehicle and make it level. Wish there was a dipstick.
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  #266  
Old 09-25-2013, 03:32 PM
bimmerZ5 bimmerZ5 is offline
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Mein Auto: Z3 3.0i Rdstr, E39 530i
Quote:
Originally Posted by adaseb View Post
Big Pain checking this fluid. Took me an entire hour almost to raise the vehicle and make it level. Wish there was a dipstick.
while i can't answer your question, I have to say I agree with you that adding a dip stick for $10 or so would have been very useful. but for some stupid reason, BMW has been getting rid of dip sticks... friends with newer BMWs all have engines that don't have an oil dipstick anymore and rely on the electronic sensors that have been known to fail; i've never heard of a dipstick failing...
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  #267  
Old 11-03-2013, 04:38 PM
badvlvo badvlvo is offline
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Mein Auto: 00 z3 2.5, 04 e46 2.5
Good thread here. I will be doing the next round of maintenance on the e46 myself and the trans is due to be serviced this time. Im an experienced wrench, but this answers any questions I may encounter while doing this service. Thanks!
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  #268  
Old 12-03-2013, 11:31 AM
Redz284u Redz284u is offline
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Mein Auto: 2003 325i Wagon M56 SULEV
for some reason, I found that my transmission pan screws are t27?????? the t25 fits but its very loose. maybe at some point the original owner had them swapped??? anybody else have t27 6mm x 22mm screws???
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  #269  
Old 12-03-2013, 08:52 PM
dvsgene dvsgene is offline
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I don't think it matters. T25 or T27. Most people have a set. Tighter is always better to avoid stripping.
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  #270  
Old 06-23-2014, 12:12 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Location: San Jose, California
 
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Mein Auto: 02 BMW 525i M54 auto 130K
By way of update ... This excellent picture & fact-filled DIY was just written today:
> E39 (1997 - 2003) > DIY: 1998 BMW 528i MANUAL Transmission & REAR Differential Fluids UPDATED version
Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
DIY: 1998 BMW 528i MANUAL Transmission & REAR Differential Fluids UPDATED version

* To see the original DIY from May 2006 (@88K miles), scroll down to see it. This is for updated version of what I just did at 141K miles.
See also:
- ATF: Automatic transmission fluid (1) (2) (3) (4) & automatic transmission fluid & filter DIYs (0) (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) & torque values (1) & how to find the hidden E39 transmission fluid level dipstick (1) & why ATF gushes out of the fill hole (1) & ZF 5HP19 facts (1)
- Differential: Rear differential hypoid gear oil (1) & differential fluid change DIYs (0) (1) (2) (3)
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Each repair should invariably add to our knowledge base by the process of inexorable incrementalism.
Your job, in return, is to read the suggested threads, where the best people will always add value to those threads, either by pictures or by descriptions, so the next person with the same problem stands on your shoulders.
See also: E39 Bestlinks & How to easily find what you need
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  #271  
Old 08-22-2014, 10:36 PM
glhx glhx is offline
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As somewhat of an update

I changed to max life at 110,000

At 130k ......I believe it's my 3rd gear is slipping when I go from 4th to 3rd. I give it heavy gas......it drops down and slips for about 3 seconds.

I have been getting codes that my transmission sensor is acting up, unsure why

I smelled burned clutch last time.


How I changed the fluid.
With 25 quarts of max life until all the old fluid was gone. Max life is red.....esso is brown. All he fluid was red. Car was up in the air.....wheels turning and fluid level with the drain plug. Gears were shifted while changing. Replaced 2 filters for the heck of it to get any trash out of there.

Coincidence....maybe. I'm going to have to tear it apart and find out. Upgrade it and......well......ZF told me to use their life guard semi synthetic fluid. They also told me bmw is semi synthetic. Max life is full synthetic.

Is it too slippery. I don't know.....it's only that 1 gear. But that's rare for that to happen so soon. It's always reverse that kills these. Which is a time consuming easily fix for $300.
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