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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 10-20-2013, 11:57 AM
imbvl imbvl is offline
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Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
 
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Mein Auto: BMWs: '01 X5, '03 540/6,
Clutch replacement problem

Clutch replacement problem
2003 E39 540/6-speed, 121K miles. Clutch was worn out, as evidenced by an RPM-dependent whine from that area, whenever the clutch was out, in neutral or any gear, stopped or moving. Bought an OEM kit (pressure plate, clutch disc, and throw-out bearing) from the dealer. Dropped the transmission, removed the pressure plate and clutch disc, and also the dual-mass flywheel, to replace the rear main seal. Flywheel looked great, no discoloration. Throw-out bearing felt 'loose'. Didn't measure clutch disc thickness. Put it all back together, re-installed the transmission. Wanted to start it, to be sure everything worked OK, before re-installing the driveshaft and exhaust system. Need to depress the clutch before starting (so it won't start in gear). First 80% of clutch travel was almost no resistance, then it got SOLID. Couldn't push the pedal to the floor. The first 80% was way too light - can push the pedal down with one finger! Took the transmission back out, to verify that I hadn't put the clutch disk in backwards - "getriebeseite" was toward the gearbox. Disassembled clutch disc and pressure plate, inspected them, put it all back together (this time with only two bolts at top and two at the bottom of the bell-housing, in case it needs to come out again). CRUD! SAME SYMPTOMS!

Does anyone have any suggestions?

While I'm waiting for feedback, I'm going to drop the gearbox for the third time, and put all the old, "worn" parts back in, to see if there's something screwy about the new parts. I'll also compare part numbers, old and new.

The first time I put it together, I apparently didn't have the clutch slave cylinder extension rod fitted to the lever arm properly, and when I operated the clutch, it blew the end of the slave cylinder out. So I took the slave cylinder out, cleaned the piston and spring, put it back together, and bled the system, keeping the bleed port at the highest point in the slave cylinder. Bled it until no bubbles came out. So I don't think air in the system is the problem. Putting in the "old" parts should tell me if it's the mechanical pieces, or the hydraulic system, that's the problem.

Thank you!

Bruce, in South Florida
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  #2  
Old 10-20-2013, 12:51 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
So did you reset the self adjusting pressure plate when you took it off?
__________________

2000 540/6 Slightly tweeked...everywhere
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  #3  
Old 10-20-2013, 01:37 PM
imbvl imbvl is offline
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Mein Auto: BMWs: '01 X5, '03 540/6,
no, I replaced it with a new one, which came already self-adjusted, with a three-pronged ring which is removed after you clamp the pressure-plate down.
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  #4  
Old 10-20-2013, 04:41 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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Sounds like you know what you're doing, but I'll just ask to help you go over things ....

1. Re-aligned the flywheel with the proper guide dowel bolt hole in the crank? (You would've quickly noticed, if not.)
2. Didn't put the throw-out on backwards? (Probably not possible anyway....)
3. Have already ordered a new slave yet? (Probably a good idea, considering.)
4. When you installed the new PP and removed the lock-plate, did you hear the PP snapping a bit?
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  #5  
Old 10-20-2013, 05:07 PM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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As I understand your post, you installed the new PP, then removed the new PP after experiencing problems. After you remove the new PP it must be reset before reinstalling.


Quote:
Originally Posted by imbvl View Post
no, I replaced it with a new one, which came already self-adjusted, with a three-pronged ring which is removed after you clamp the pressure-plate down.
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  #6  
Old 10-20-2013, 06:40 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
Quote:
Originally Posted by pshovest View Post
As I understand your post, you installed the new PP, then removed the new PP after experiencing problems. After you remove the new PP it must be reset before reinstalling.
^___that's the way I read it too.
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  #7  
Old 10-21-2013, 04:55 PM
imbvl imbvl is offline
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Mein Auto: BMWs: '01 X5, '03 540/6,
Pleiades first:
1. Flywheel properly indexed.
2. Throw-out bearing in correctly.
3. New slave ordered, will be here tomorrow.
4. When I installed the new PP, and torqued it down (25 Nm) the "fingers" moved rearward, relieving the load on the retaining plate, and it just fell out. No "snapping" noise.

pshovest and JimLev, I installed the new PP, and the retaining plate (lock plate) fell out after I torqued the PP down. When I took the PP back out, I first installed the lock plate before uloosening the bolts. Doesn't that accomplish the same thing?

I measured from the rear-most surface of the PP to the flywheel surface, with the new PP and the old PP, both properly torqued down. Same dimension on both - 1.5 inches. Then I measured from that same rear-most PP surface to the top of the "fingers" (installed). BIG DIFFERENCE! 0.35 inches on the old PP, 0.70 inches on the new. Total slave piston travel is only 0.05-0.10 inches, just enough the loosen the disc from the flywheel. So now I have to figure out why the difference. Any suggestions? BTW, the difference in clutch disc thickness was only about .040 inches - that's not enough to drive the "finger" height that much, IMHO.

Thank you, all three, for your help!

Brucer, in Florida
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  #8  
Old 10-21-2013, 05:55 PM
pleiades pleiades is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imbvl View Post
..... pshovest and JimLev, I installed the new PP, and the retaining plate (lock plate) fell out after I torqued the PP down. When I took the PP back out, I first installed the lock plate before uloosening the bolts. Doesn't that accomplish the same thing?.....
You might need to try something like this, then....

http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php?t=629140
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  #9  
Old 10-21-2013, 06:27 PM
imbvl imbvl is offline
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Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
 
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Mein Auto: BMWs: '01 X5, '03 540/6,
HOLY S..T! I think that explains the problem! THANK YOU!!!!!

I don't have the expensive tool, but after I understand the objective, I can improvise.

I've been at this for about a week. Getting pretty fast at R & R the gearbox!
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  #10  
Old 10-21-2013, 06:41 PM
pshovest pshovest is offline
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Mein Auto: '10 535iA, '00 528iTM
I'm surprised the locking plate fell out when PP was bolted up. I expected removal would take some effort, but I'm only familiar with the non-SAC version. I doubt that's enough travel for the slave cylinder. Did you disconnect the slave hydraulically when you removed the trans or just let it hang by the tubing/hose? Sounds like hydraulic problem. Did you bleed the clutch. If master & slave cylinders worked with original clutch, I wouldn't expect a problem with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by imbvl View Post
.......... Total slave piston travel is only 0.05-0.10 inches, just enough the loosen the disc from the flywheel. So now I have to figure out why the difference.............Brucer, in Florida
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  #11  
Old 10-21-2013, 08:19 PM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Mein Auto: 540/6, S60 Volvo, Tribeca
When I changed my clutch and PP I needed to use a ratchet in the center hole to get the locking plate out.
The slave rod should travel about 1/2".
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  #12  
Old 07-16-2014, 05:43 AM
39eforplay 39eforplay is offline
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Mein Auto: e39 540i 6speed
wat size rachet did u use to get the locking plate outs

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