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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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  #1  
Old 01-12-2013, 09:58 AM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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2006 - ZF Trans - Mechtronic Sleeve leak

Hello there,

I know there is at least one other thread on this topic but I was wondering if anyone had changed the Mechtronic sleeve without dropping the trans pan. Mine has the plastic pan with the built in filter. It's a 328i Coupe with the sport package. I'd love to just change the sleeve and top off the fluid for now if that's possible. I've seen hints that it might somehow not be accessible without removing the pan.

BTW, I'm in ATL. European Motor Cars wants $864 to do the pan drop / change and replace the sleeve.

Thanks in advance,

Jeff
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  #2  
Old 01-12-2013, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by j_nolesfan View Post
Hello there,

I know there is at least one other thread on this topic but I was wondering if anyone had changed the Mechtronic sleeve without dropping the trans pan. Mine has the plastic pan with the built in filter. It's a 328i Coupe with the sport package. I'd love to just change the sleeve and top off the fluid for now if that's possible. I've seen hints that it might somehow not be accessible without removing the pan.

BTW, I'm in ATL. European Motor Cars wants $864 to do the pan drop / change and replace the sleeve.

Thanks in advance,

Jeff


Tut, tut, tut.

Read all about.

Also, I'm hearing about this Youtube thing site, whatever that is.
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2013, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
Tut, tut, tut.

Read all about.

Also, I'm hearing about this Youtube thing site, whatever that is.
Aren't you done with those childish smart-ass replies? Idiot.
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  #4  
Old 01-12-2013, 02:51 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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So I deduce that I can change the sleeve without dropping the pan. Anyone want to weigh in on using Shell, Mercon, Castrol, or OEM to top the fluid off?
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  #5  
Old 01-12-2013, 02:54 PM
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fun2drive fun2drive is offline
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I don't understand the reluctance to drop the pan. It is not that hard and if you use an inch pound torque wrench not hard to reinstall correctly. Gasket is reuseable as well. You will have one hell of a time doing this job without dropping the pan. All you need is a Habor Frieght 5 buck hand pump to refill the trans until it weeps out the fill hole, start the car and once up to between 80-120F fill until it weeps out, put the plug in and you are done.
Not sure if yours takes Lifeguard 5 or 6 but both are easily available as you will loose some when you drain and drop the pan.
Esso LT 71141 and Pentosin AFT1 work for LG5 and LG6 either use LG6 or Mercon SP for fill replacements...
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  #6  
Old 01-12-2013, 05:22 PM
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Aren't you done with those childish smart-ass replies? Idiot.

Well, hello Saint. You seemed be away awhile....back strong now?
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  #7  
Old 01-12-2013, 06:35 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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I realize it's a BMW but there are two reasons I don't want to drop the pan. First. it's a lot more expensive and while I own a Bimmer, the timing sucks for my finances. Second, I've heard horror stories about trannys failing 2k miles after fluid changes. If I minimize the amount of fluid change, maybe I avoid a failure?


Since the filter is built into the pan, wouldn't it be crazy to try and reuse the pan?

Thanks,

Jeff

Last edited by j_nolesfan; 01-12-2013 at 06:36 PM.
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  #8  
Old 01-13-2013, 12:09 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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I've seen much debate about which fluid to use, Mercon SP, Castrol IMV, ZF, etc. I noticed that Valvoline IMV also meets the Shell M-1375.4 spec.

From the spec sheet: "BMW LT 71141, ETL-7045E and M-1375.4 applications"

Found Here
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  #9  
Old 01-13-2013, 01:39 PM
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What fluid you use is up to you but the reason I can recommend the fluids above is that it came from ZF the manufacturer of your transmission not repeat not a provider of ATF that says it is OK. Let me ask this if your transmission fails who do you blame?
Dropping the pan and refilling it with the saved fluid is not a good idea if your transmission has 50K miles or more.

I have never heard of any transmission failure from dropping the pan and refilling to the correct level with the RIGHT ATF. I have heard of and experienced transmission failure from flushing a transmission not from refilling one.

Unless you have over 120K miles on your transmission there is no need to replace the pan/ filter.
You are not saving any time or money trying to leave the pan in place.

Risking a transmission because you are trying to use an ATF that the manufacturer states is compatable isn't for me.

All of this assumes you have the GA6HP19Z (ZF) not the GA6L45 (GM) transmission..
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2013, 03:34 PM
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Buy the extra fluid from the dealer. Get a new 5 gallon bucket from your local hardware store and hit the BMW parts counter. You may overpay slightly but save your $7k transmission in the process.
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  #11  
Old 01-13-2013, 03:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j_nolesfan View Post
Hello there,

I know there is at least one other thread on this topic but I was wondering if anyone had changed the Mechtronic sleeve without dropping the trans pan. Mine has the plastic pan with the built in filter. It's a 328i Coupe with the sport package. I'd love to just change the sleeve and top off the fluid for now if that's possible. I've seen hints that it might somehow not be accessible without removing the pan.

BTW, I'm in ATL. European Motor Cars wants $864 to do the pan drop / change and replace the sleeve.

Thanks in advance,

Jeff
You are confusing. Is that for a 2006 or your 328i 2007? If the latter, it should be a GM unit, although those problems are common on the ZF.
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  #12  
Old 01-13-2013, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j_nolesfan View Post
Hello there,

I know there is at least one other thread on this topic but I was wondering if anyone had changed the Mechtronic sleeve without dropping the trans pan. Mine has the plastic pan with the built in filter. It's a 328i Coupe with the sport package. I'd love to just change the sleeve and top off the fluid for now if that's possible. I've seen hints that it might somehow not be accessible without removing the pan.

BTW, I'm in ATL. European Motor Cars wants $864 to do the pan drop / change and replace the sleeve.

Thanks in advance,

Jeff
Are you wanting to DIY or looking for a credible tech / second opinion?

I like these guys .... they have kept our 2002 330i alive since the dealer faded in the rearview mirror .....

http://www.munichmotorsport.com
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2013, 05:04 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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fun2drive,

Thanks for your time and advice. I can agree with all points. The only issue is, my filter and pan on the HP6 ZF transmission is one unit. I'd be worried about disturbing debris in the filter or pan unless it was easy enough to clean both. I'm at 81k miles and any fluid I remove will be replaced with new fluid, definitely not reclaimed fluid.

If the pan doesn't impede the access to the sleeve, I would think I could merely top the fluid off after replacing the sleeve and avoid the pan drop. I'm going to confirm that tomorrow night, if I can make time to jack it up and take a closer look.

With that said, the way In reading your statement about recommended fluids, it appears that Mercon SP is the one you're recommend for topping off the existing fluid? Would you say the same for Pentosin ATF1?

Thanks,

Jeff
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2013, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j_nolesfan View Post
fun2drive,

Thanks for your time and advice. I can agree with all points. The only issue is, my filter and pan on the HP6 ZF transmission is one unit. I'd be worried about disturbing debris in the filter or pan unless it was easy enough to clean both. I'm at 81k miles and any fluid I remove will be replaced with new fluid, definitely not reclaimed fluid.

If the pan doesn't impede the access to the sleeve, I would think I could merely top the fluid off after replacing the sleeve and avoid the pan drop. I'm going to confirm that tomorrow night, if I can make time to jack it up and take a closer look.

With that said, the way In reading your statement about recommended fluids, it appears that Mercon SP is the one you're recommend for topping off the existing fluid? Would you say the same for Pentosin ATF1?

Ya gotta drop the pan - BMW note, procedure. Note where is says drain & save the fluid.

Filter service routine.

Hey, just be patient & move it along - not a tough job. Don't forget the new pan gasket!!


.

Last edited by CALWATERBOY; 01-13-2013 at 09:40 PM.
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  #15  
Old 01-14-2013, 04:04 AM
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bear-avhistory bear-avhistory is offline
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Agree with Cal again - must be something in the air - just be sure to wear throwaways or clothes you will be using for DYI down the road. You get trans fluid in them it will not come out.

BMW notes "Up to 1 liter of Shell M-1375.4 transmission fluid can be claimed for topping up the transmission fluid level."
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  #16  
Old 01-14-2013, 04:35 AM
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Originally Posted by bear-avhistory View Post
Agree with Cal again - must be something in the air - just be sure to wear throwaways or clothes you will be using for DYI down the road. You get trans fluid in them it will not come out.

BMW notes "Up to 1 liter of Shell M-1375.4 transmission fluid can be claimed for topping up the transmission fluid level."

Numbness. It's cold out there!

Also, my New Year's Resolution: Be right sometimes.

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  #17  
Old 01-14-2013, 07:59 AM
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If you have the 6spd ZF transmission I can't recommend Pentosin ATF1 or ESSO now Mobil LT71141 because those are for 5 spd ZF transmissions. What is the difference? I don't know I would have to send samples to Blackstone as I did with Mercon SP and see how similar they are. Yes Mercon SP is the same as LifeGuard 6 with two exceptions, color and smell. The Blackstone analysis stated that they could have come from the same batch of ATF since there was no difference (except what I stated above) in the samples. Mercon SP is 5.99 from O'Reilys a quart. LG6 best price I know from this supplier is
http://www.thectsc.com/index.php?p=p...d=184&parent=0

If you have any doubts about ATF just read their opinion on using something other than what ZF recommends. It is in bold orange right in the middle of their web page.

I agree with the above posters and I have done this job myself, you will spill some ATF maybe a pint so it helps to have plastic under the area to catch what will spill. Regarding the integral pan and filter. You always clean the magnets and wipe the pan clean before installing on any transmission. The debris that falls into the pan and I suppose the filter is both clutch material and steel particales which is all normal and can ruin your transmission if it gets stuck in check balls. That isn't going to happen when you drain-drop-refill vs flush.

This isn't a terrible job and it serves a dual purpose of changing a good deal of ATF and fixing that rubber sleeve. I would suggest and drain and refill again in 30K miles and every 30K miles after since ATF if you use Mercon SP is not expensive and that will keep your transmission happy...

Last edited by fun2drive; 01-14-2013 at 08:01 AM.
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  #18  
Old 01-14-2013, 10:55 AM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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Thanks again to all who posted.

I've ordered the replacement sealing sleeve. I'm tempted to top off the fluid in the next day or two even before the sleeve comes in just because I'm paranoid since I don't know how much has leaked out and I expect that the car won't go into some sort of safe mode due to low fluid in time to be able to save part damage, anyone? This will also give me an idea of how crucial the pan drop is to getting at the sleeve.

Oreilly doesn't have the Motorcraft Mercon SP fluid around here so I'm going to the local Ford dealer who has it for $7/qt. I've heard ranges of one to six quarts on different pan drops.

When the part comes in, I'll probably do the fluid replacement and keep the pan for now. I'll post back when there's something else to report.

Cheers,

Jeff
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Old 01-14-2013, 11:21 AM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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Oh, another piece of handy advice that I hadn't seen to this point. Since the pan is plastic, let the temps cool to near room temperature or the pan can warp if you take it off while hot. I suppose that's common sense but when looking at the all of the steps related to the job, that little point could get missed. Also, I now understand that the lock for the Mechtronic sleeve is located inside the transmission above the pan. I was reading that as if the lock was outside the transmission. A real "eureka" moment. "Hey, I'm not dumb, I'm just slow..." LOL!

Thanks again,

Jeff

Last edited by j_nolesfan; 01-14-2013 at 12:19 PM.
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  #20  
Old 01-14-2013, 11:35 AM
BMWTurboDzl BMWTurboDzl is online now
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Could try BIMRS.ORG. There's a shop or 2 off Howell Mill and 75

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Old 01-14-2013, 01:18 PM
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Numbness. It's cold out there!

Also, my New Year's Resolution: Be right sometimes.

Attachment 357624
70 & drizzly today.
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  #22  
Old 01-19-2013, 09:19 AM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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Question Getting started - big question.

So, I've got the car jacked up and I've removed all of the plastic shields. It is extremely tight around the mechatronic wiring entry point into the transmission. It would be immensely helpful if I could remove the rear cross member from the transmission without providing some additional support. In other words, will the fact that it's mounted to the motor and to the drive shaft be enough to hold the transmission in place while I work?

I can post a pic if needed but it's the aluminum cross member under the back (rear) of the transmission.

Thanks in advance.

Jeff
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:09 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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Oh no, slippage?

Ok, I did it without removing the cross member. I do have one curious question though. Mercon SP, I expected it to be red but it stinks like gear oil. The stuff that was in there didn't seem to stink like that. Does the smell dissipate over time?

Thanks again,

Jeff
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  #24  
Old 01-19-2013, 03:10 PM
j_nolesfan j_nolesfan is offline
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Yeah, just went for a test drive. The timing on the shifts make it feel like I'm clutching and changing a manual shift. I don't know if I'd call it a slip or a hesitation. I'm suspecting the Mercon SP fluid.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:31 PM
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So, everyone keeps giving you information on the transmission fluid for the ZF transmission, and you keep referring to it as well.

However, doesn't the 2007 328i use a GM 6L45 (6L50?) transmission, which would seem to imply Dexron VI transmission fluid instead of Mercon SP? Aren't the viscosity specifications for the two different?
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