Welcome to Bimmerfest -- The #1 Online Community for BMW related information! Please enjoy the discussion forums below and share your experiences with the 200,000 current, new and past BMW owners. The forums are broken out by car model and into other special interest sections such as BMW European Delivery and a special forum to voice your questions to the many BMW dealers on the site to assist our members!

Please follow the links below to help get you started!

Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E34 (1989 - 1995)

E34 (1989 - 1995)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-20-2013, 10:55 AM
Larrick Larrick is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Berkeley California
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 573
Mein Auto: 1994 525it
Automatic transmission service confusion

I want to check and service the automatic transmission in a 1994 525it. According to Bentley it is A4S 310R. Bentley suggests that an authorized BMW dealer with the appropriate temperature measuring equipment is the only one capable of checking the ATF level.
I have to assume that one of you know a way around that requirement.
Is the ATF fluid strainer the "filter"? Do you simply clean it and replace it?
I have read some interesting DIY transmission fluid changes for the e34 but they are vague in some aspects...like change the filter. Bentley does not mention a filter that I can find.
RealOEM. does not show a filter.
The transmission is fine but I want to do some preventative maintenance.
Does anyone have a procedure?
Some sites suggest that one should just change the ATF if there is any doubt about service history.
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
  #2  
Old 01-20-2013, 11:13 AM
BMR_LVR's Avatar
BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
Humble E34 lover
Location: Asheboro, NC
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,264
Mein Auto: 1992 525i
Check here. It will take you through the whole process. The transmission shown is in an E36, but it is the same transmission as yours.

I bought a laser temperature gun at Autozone for about $29 or so. I shoot the transmission pan to get an idea of the fluid temperature.

Hope this helps.
__________________
Most problems are usually something simple !

Quote:
Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 200K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-20-2013, 11:42 AM
Larrick Larrick is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Berkeley California
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 573
Mein Auto: 1994 525it
Thanks, I did actually find the site you sent me while continuing my own search. My confusion was with the word "strainer" used in Bentley. I picture a substantial, reusable, metal mesh, when I read the word as opposed to "filter" which I associate with a replaceable paper cartridge.
I must be over thinking it!
I plan on buying the filter and gasket kit and doing a atf change.
Bavauto says that a Black label on the pan indicates that Dexron III was used as original. A Green label indicates 7045-E was used and that BMW recommends 7045-E.
I have read suggestions that you should drain the atf after a short amount of driving and then refill because you cannot get all of the fluid out even when the pans are off. The second change mixes with what fluid was left and makes for a more complete change.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-20-2013, 12:21 PM
BMR_LVR's Avatar
BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
Humble E34 lover
Location: Asheboro, NC
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,264
Mein Auto: 1992 525i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larrick View Post
Thanks, I did actually find the site you sent me while continuing my own search. My confusion was with the word "strainer" used in Bentley. I picture a substantial, reusable, metal mesh, when I read the word as opposed to "filter" which I associate with a replaceable paper cartridge.
I must be over thinking it!
I plan on buying the filter and gasket kit and doing a atf change.
Bavauto says that a Black label on the pan indicates that Dexron III was used as original. A Green label indicates 7045-E was used and that BMW recommends 7045-E.
I have read suggestions that you should drain the atf after a short amount of driving and then refill because you cannot get all of the fluid out even when the pans are off. The second change mixes with what fluid was left and makes for a more complete change.
Your idea for a change after a short amount of time driving may not be a bad idea if you don't have the tranny service record, but once you do that, servicing the tranny every 30k should be sufficient. I do mine every 25k just for a little piece of mind.
__________________
Most problems are usually something simple !

Quote:
Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 200K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-20-2013, 07:44 PM
zfxpE34 zfxpE34 is offline
Registered User
Location: Florida
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 98
Mein Auto: 1995 BMW 540i E34
i just purchased a 95 540i, with 109k I have no idea if it's ever been serviced, shouldI have it serviced, or leave it alone it is shifting sligtly rough
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-20-2013, 07:57 PM
BMR_LVR's Avatar
BMR_LVR BMR_LVR is offline
Humble E34 lover
Location: Asheboro, NC
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,264
Mein Auto: 1992 525i
I recommend having the fluid drained and a new filter installed. It is generally not recommended to flush it.
__________________
Most problems are usually something simple !

Quote:
Originally Posted by noego View Post
It's Deja Poo - as in, I've heard this **** before.
Steve

Calypso Red 1992 525i with 200K miles

1991 735i - Sold
1992 525i - Sold
1995 325is - Sold
2000 528i - Sold

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-20-2013, 08:43 PM
BMWFatherFigure's Avatar
BMWFatherFigure BMWFatherFigure is offline
Old School
Location: Perth, Western Australia
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,324
Mein Auto: E23;E30;E38;E32;E34 +
+1 on above
__________________
Good - Fast - Cheap: Pick any two.
Current:
E23 735i; E32 735iL (X 2 - 1 Alpine White and 1 Glacier Blue); E34 535i; E38 735iL; R50 Cooper; R55 Cooper Clubman.
Previous:
E21 318i; E30 318i; E32 735iL; E34 535i; E38 730iL; E53 4.4i
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-21-2013, 05:06 AM
snowsled7 snowsled7 is offline
The Ornery Old Man
Location: SW Mountains
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 980
Mein Auto: GTI
Why not flush it? You might as well change all of the fluid right?

I have read the internet legend that a flush will somehow damage your transmission. My experience is with a Snap On transmission flushing machine, I have used it, and seen it used on hundreds of vehicles. I am not aware of a single one ever having a failure after a flush. Fluid flows through the trans as it would if it was running, no excessive pressures, no backwards flush. It is designed so that it can not possibly harm the transmission.

I think the root of this legend is so many people buying old vehicles with worn out automatic transmissions. They buy a car with a trans on its last legs, try a flush as a fix to a mechanical problem, the trans fails and they want to blame the flush. Fact is, the trans was cooked before the flush.

I have read the stories that claim sludge is knocked loose too gumming up the works. This is extremely unlikely as most auto transmissions are spotless inside. ATF is highly detergent, it is a closed system with no combustion taking place like in the engine. There just isn't the debris there is in an engine.

I think you should have it properly serviced with a complete fluid exchange and filter.
__________________
Current ride... '13 GTI Wolfsburg
BMW's from my past...
'92 535i/5 '89 325ix/5
'98 750iL '86 325(e)/5
'95 740iL '84 318i/5
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-21-2013, 05:15 AM
kmorgan_260 kmorgan_260 is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Salem, WV
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 750
Mein Auto: 1997 528i
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowsled7 View Post
Why not flush it? You might as well change all of the fluid right?

I have read the internet legend that a flush will somehow damage your transmission. My experience is with a Snap On transmission flushing machine, I have used it, and seen it used on hundreds of vehicles. I am not aware of a single one ever having a failure after a flush. Fluid flows through the trans as it would if it was running, no excessive pressures, no backwards flush. It is designed so that it can not possibly harm the transmission.

I think the root of this legend is so many people buying old vehicles with worn out automatic transmissions. They buy a car with a trans on its last legs, try a flush as a fix to a mechanical problem, the trans fails and they want to blame the flush. Fact is, the trans was cooked before the flush.

I have read the stories that claim sludge is knocked loose too gumming up the works. This is extremely unlikely as most auto transmissions are spotless inside. ATF is highly detergent, it is a closed system with no combustion taking place like in the engine. There just isn't the debris there is in an engine.

I think you should have it properly serviced with a complete fluid exchange and filter.
I agree with this assessment. There is a lot of urban legend associated with auto tranny service but my experience and that of a few knowledgable mechanics is that any type of service (flush or fluid/filter change) is beneficial IF DONE CORRECTLY.
__________________

94 318I (Daughter's car), 96 740IL(current project), 97 528I(DD), 07 335I(Son's car)
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-21-2013, 10:57 AM
Larrick Larrick is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Berkeley California
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 573
Mein Auto: 1994 525it
The ATF change write-up sent by Steve is excellent. Thank you.
A few comments and questions:
Two feet of clearance between ground and sump pan would be nice for working space. I am thinking of using four floor jacks to keep the car level.
The Pelican Parts write-up estimates 45 minutes for the ATF to reach the proper temperature. This is because the transmission is heating slowly when not engaged.
Isn"t there a standard amount of ATF which should be in the transmission? And if that amount is put in after the sumps are back in place. why not run the engine with the transmission engaged and wheels off the ground
to speed up the heating of the ATF?
What is the purpose of running through the gears with your foot on the brake? The transmission is not moving.
Does this engage the pump to circulate the fluid?
Why would the fluid heat up at all, when nut under driving conditions?
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-21-2013, 02:28 PM
Larrick Larrick is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Berkeley California
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 573
Mein Auto: 1994 525it
One more question......what is the best brand of filter and gasket kit to buy. I am thinking of Meistersatz from AutohausazAz.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-21-2013, 05:24 PM
snowsled7 snowsled7 is offline
The Ornery Old Man
Location: SW Mountains
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 980
Mein Auto: GTI
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larrick View Post
Isn"t there a standard amount of ATF which should be in the transmission? And if that amount is put in after the sumps are back in place. why not run the engine with the transmission engaged and wheels off the ground
to speed up the heating of the ATF?
There is a standard amount if you could drain the whole system. Most of the trans fluid is in the torque convertor. If you can't drain it, it stays in the system and all you can do is guess. You can measure what you remove I guess.

Quote:
What is the purpose of running through the gears with your foot on the brake? The transmission is not moving.
Does this engage the pump to circulate the fluid?
Why would the fluid heat up at all, when nut under driving conditions?
With your foot on the brake and the trans in gear, the engine is running against the torque convertor. This will heat the fluid up more quickly. The convertor is like two fans blowing against each other in a fluid bath. The fluid heats when the fan on the engine side is pushing against the stationary trans side fan.

Seems to me that the $100-120 is costs to have the fluid exchanged at a shop would be a lot easier and cleaner than trying to do it yourself. Good Luck
__________________
Current ride... '13 GTI Wolfsburg
BMW's from my past...
'92 535i/5 '89 325ix/5
'98 750iL '86 325(e)/5
'95 740iL '84 318i/5
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Forum Navigation
Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E34 (1989 - 1995)
Today's Posts Search
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:52 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
© 2001-2011 performanceIX, Inc. All Rights Reserved .: guidelines .:. privacy .:. terms