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E60 (2004 - 2010)
BMW 5-Series (E60 chassis) was first seen in the Unites States in the fall of 2003 with a 2004 Model Year designation. The E60 is now available as a 528i, 528xi, 535i, 535xi, 550i and a 535xi sports wagon! -- View the E60 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 09-19-2013, 12:26 PM
CJohnson623 CJohnson623 is offline
Charles Johnson
Location: Minneapolis
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 62
Mein Auto: 2004 BMW 545i
Transmission fluid change

Hi I have a 2004 545i with an automatic transmission with 95k on it. The transmission fluid has never been changed and I'm not sure what kind of fluid to get or the process to change it. Any DIY links? Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 09-19-2013, 12:43 PM
schpenxel schpenxel is offline
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Location: Greensboro, NC
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 3,296
Mein Auto: 2004 545i
thectsc.com has the fluid and fluid changing kits w/oil pan, etc. Buy some extra pan bolts while you're at it--I nearly stripped a few on mine

is a video I did of doing something else to the transmission, but it shows removing the oil pan, which is necessary to change the filter (it is built into the pan) so you can just watch that part basically

The only weird part is filling it back up

After putting it back together you pump as much transmission fluid in as it will hold until it starts coming back out (there's a plug on the side of the transmission that you'll take out to pump oil in to) then start the car. Then the objective is to have fluid barely draining back out of this car when the fluid hits roughly 105*F. To do this I usually add fluid as soon as I start the car to get too much in there, then let it drain until it gets to the right temp. Once it hits that, put the plug back in and you are good to go. I think you're also supposed to get in the car and slowly change through the gears to make sure there's fluid throughout

You also need to reset transmission adaptations after changing the fluid

Last edited by schpenxel; 09-19-2013 at 12:45 PM.
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Old 09-19-2013, 12:45 PM
CJohnson623 CJohnson623 is offline
Charles Johnson
Location: Minneapolis
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 62
Mein Auto: 2004 BMW 545i
Thanks for the quick help!
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  #4  
Old 09-19-2013, 01:08 PM
banglenot banglenot is offline
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CJ, make sure you use the ZF fluid. Expensive compared to others, but your're really trying to get another 60-80K out of this fluid/filter change.

Also, get some Liquid Wrench and an impact wrench for the bolts. Some models strip (as schpenxel notes above) or break off if you try to gorilla them off.

Schpenxel, was it you that swapped out the actuators in the mechatronics since you had the pan off, or was that someone else?
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:18 PM
schpenxel schpenxel is offline
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Location: Greensboro, NC
 
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Yep, that was me! In the driveway no less, lol
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:28 PM
schpenxel schpenxel is offline
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Location: Greensboro, NC
 
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Mein Auto: 2004 545i
Quote:
Originally Posted by banglenot View Post
CJ, make sure you use the ZF fluid. Expensive compared to others, but your're really trying to get another 60-80K out of this fluid/filter change.

Also, get some Liquid Wrench and an impact wrench for the bolts. Some models strip (as schpenxel notes above) or break off if you try to gorilla them off.

Schpenxel, was it you that swapped out the actuators in the mechatronics since you had the pan off, or was that someone else?
Agree on the fluid and other points--I did not use an impact wrench to loosen the bolts, but a little 1/4" impact driver made quick work of all the little bolts that hold the plastic under carriage cover and oil pan off once you get them loose

One thing I found out the hard way--when you think you've found the right size torx bit, try the next size up. I used a T25 on about half the bolts, and all but stripped a few (and did strip one) before I realized they were actually T27. After I switched I didn't have any other issues with stripping bolts out

On the replacement bolts I bought they increased the size of torx bit, so I guess that helped with the whole stripping issue
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