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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 06-05-2010, 09:28 AM
tpolo76 tpolo76 is offline
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Location: Illinois
 
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Mein Auto: 528i
BMW 528i Transmission Problems

BMW 528i has 147,000 miles. Majority of mileage are on highway. Car has not been drive hard - all around easy miles. Have never had a problem with automatic transmission until a week ago. One day the transmission suddenly started to slip - 1st gear OK. Shift into 2nd gear, RPMs go up and speed drops. If I go easy on the accelerator, I can slowly get it up in speed in 2nd gear- it will takes awhile. I'm not sure I can get to 3rd gear. Was concerned, so I headed home after about a 2-4 mile trip. Two days later, after I let it warm up (for about 15 minutes}, I tried it out again going around the block. The same thing happen as in day 1, but I noticed that while in 1st gear the transmission seemed to be grabbing. I didn't notice this the first day.

I obviously have a problem but can anybody give me a little more insight. Anybody know of a good, reliable and honest BMW transmission repairman in the western suburbs of Chicago (Naperville). Any help would be appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 06-06-2010, 12:26 PM
pangolin pangolin is offline
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Mein Auto: 540i 6-speed
Make sure there is enough fluid in there. Also change the fluid, if it hasn't been done. There isa group of people who don't believe in this, I'm not one of them.
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:08 PM
tpolo76 tpolo76 is offline
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Thanks for your reply & info.
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:19 PM
jarhed1964 jarhed1964 is offline
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Mein Auto: 97 &99 528i, 05 e60 530i
That is a GM 4L30E Transmission. Used by Izuzu, BMW, and a few other auto makers. This is a known issue with those freakin trannies. I replaced the transmissions on both of my 528s. If someone has not replaced or had their 4L30E replaced or rebuilt yet, it is only a matter of time.
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:33 PM
tpolo76 tpolo76 is offline
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Location: Illinois
 
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Thanks for the info. Are these rebuilt transmissions generally reliable and what kind of miles can you expect to get out of them? Generraly, what is the going rate for a rebuilt (Trans & Installation?. What is the installation /waranty period I should expect if I go this route? Antthing else I should be aware of with a rebuilt?
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:44 PM
jarhed1964 jarhed1964 is offline
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Mein Auto: 97 &99 528i, 05 e60 530i
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpolo76 View Post
Thanks for the info. Are these rebuilt transmissions generally reliable and what kind of miles can you expect to get out of them? Generraly, what is the going rate for a rebuilt (Trans & Installation?. What is the installation /waranty period I should expect if I go this route? Antthing else I should be aware of with a rebuilt?

That kinda depends on where you are and the reputation of the tranny shop. I was in SoCal when I got both of mine done. You can get a remanned tranny on Ebay from a shop in Arizona, but good luck shipping your old one to them for the core charge, or shipping it back if it is defective. You should find a local shop that is REPUTABLE to do a rebuild. Make damn sure they will give you a warrantee on their work. In other words, if it's broke after they rebuild, they get to do it all over again for FREE.

I have had NO problems with either of mine since the rebuild. I have also replaced the fluid and filter every year since then (two years ago). I paid about $1800 for the rebuilds with a 9 month warrantee on workmanship and defective parts.

Get some quotes, but make no commitments until you sort through them all. There are a lot of independents out there who worked for Cottman and other places for years before they started their own shops. If you talk to them, you'll know the ones who know what they are doing, and the ones who are just "winging it".
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