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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 06-07-2014, 07:18 AM
bigjppop bigjppop is offline
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Worth it to change the auto transmission?

So I've got the P0741 code that says my torque converter has issues. The car drives perfectly and I can detect no issues with shifting or mileage. Had the car, a 2003 530i with the 5HP19 green sticker automatic transmission, checked out by an indy shop and they said it's probably the seals but can't know for sure without taking things apart.

Their recommendation is if you're going to do the torque converter you might as well do the transmission at the same time while you've got the entire thing dropped out. The car only has 95K miles on it so needless to say, I'm pretty disheartened, especially since I've only had it for 8 months.

Anyway, they recommended just to keep driving it until it actually turns into a problem. They said it will be pretty obvious when/if things really start to go south but it shouldn't be something that will leave me suddenly stranded on the side of the road.

So my question is, is it worth it to replace the transmission/torque converter in these cars or is this a "career ender" for the e39. I don't have any firm quotes on getting the work done but was given a rough estimate of 3000-3500 for a used tranny/torque converter including labor. They said a new transmission would be 5000 just for the parts.

Thoughts? Keep driving/maintaining the car like I'm going to keep it forever knowing it will need major transmission work in the future? Try and sell it now? Drive it until the I can't anymore and then try and sell?

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 06-07-2014, 08:05 AM
mio_e46 mio_e46 is offline
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I hate seeing posts like this! It scares the sh!t out of me! Makes me wanna sell my car ahora! LOL -- I myself would not spend the 3k to fix it -- you CAN just repair the torque converter and be fine you don't necessarily need to rebuild or replace the tranny if its operating fine ... is the tranny fine??
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  #3  
Old 06-07-2014, 08:29 AM
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eparayno eparayno is offline
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No not worth it. Change out the torque converter, atf and rear main seal and call it a day. Might as well have the guibo and tranny mounts checked/replaced while they're at it
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Old 06-07-2014, 08:41 AM
mio_e46 mio_e46 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eparayno View Post
No not worth it. Change out the torque converter, atf and rear main seal and call it a day. Might as well have the guibo and tranny mounts checked/replaced while they're at it
how much do you think all that runs ??
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  #5  
Old 06-07-2014, 08:42 AM
stickbuilder stickbuilder is offline
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Worth it to change the auto transmission?

Do the seal ring between the converter and the pump while you can. Rear main seal too. You'll be good to go. You should be in for less than a thousand if you have it done. Less than five hundred if you do it yourself.


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Last edited by stickbuilder; 06-07-2014 at 08:43 AM.
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  #6  
Old 06-08-2014, 03:45 AM
bigjppop bigjppop is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stickbuilder View Post
Do the seal ring between the converter and the pump while you can. Rear main seal too. You'll be good to go. You should be in for less than a thousand if you have it done. Less than five hundred if you do it yourself.


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Less than 1000 changes the calculus dramatically. I'll need to talk to some more shops. I was quoted closer to 2K parts and labor for just the torque converter.

Does anyone see any issues with continuing to drive the car as normal until it actually shows some problems? Can I make anything worse?
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Old 06-08-2014, 05:15 AM
kmcguinn kmcguinn is offline
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Have the same code. My Indy said there are cars that have this code for years w no issues. The TC won't lockup and the mpg is impacted at highway speeds (-1mpg). I notice this only during spirited driving at +75mph. My actions have been to keep spirited driving to a minimum and reset the code when it does.

Drive it as is.


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  #8  
Old 06-08-2014, 05:39 AM
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Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
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sell the car learn to drive stick...

and you'll never post something like this again
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  #9  
Old 06-08-2014, 08:08 AM
stickbuilder stickbuilder is offline
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Precious few of them available. The OP is looking for answers, not a smart a$$ remark. Your post is a troll plain and simple. Grow up.


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  #10  
Old 06-08-2014, 10:41 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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I can't help much, but, there might be help in the bestlinks.

Typing /p0741, I get this reference:
- How to diagnose the P0741 DTC (1) & how to replace your torque converter (1)

And, typing /transmission shows disassembly photos and many other things which may be of interest to the OP.
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  #11  
Old 06-08-2014, 01:22 PM
edjack edjack is offline
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http://www.obd-codes.com/p0741
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  #12  
Old 06-09-2014, 01:46 PM
bigjppop bigjppop is offline
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Again, really appreciate the responses. Given me a lot to think about. I think I'll probably just keep driving the car as is until it actually gives me problems. I was planning to do the transmission fluid anyway so I might as well do that and just keep on. If/when things start acting up I'll look at having the torque converter replaced (hopefully its only around 1K like someone else above mentioned).

I'd like to get into an F10 in the next couple of years so maybe I just keep going with the e39 for as long as it will give me while I save up for the next one.

So many choices!
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  #13  
Old 06-09-2014, 07:04 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Change the fluid.
Drive until the wheels fall off...
Then get a stick shift...
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  #14  
Old 06-09-2014, 08:39 PM
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IndiansFan IndiansFan is offline
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I would agree with eparayno. I posed the same question to a BMW independent in North East Ohio. He said it is not worth it. Just replace the torque converter and drive it for another 100k miles. His advice is much more reliable than one of the posts above........
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Last edited by IndiansFan; 06-09-2014 at 08:42 PM.
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  #15  
Old 06-10-2014, 02:33 AM
stickbuilder stickbuilder is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
Change the fluid.
Drive until the wheels fall off...
Then get a stick shift...

Not a thread about stick shifts. Family car. Not race car.


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  #16  
Old 06-10-2014, 04:55 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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FYI,

Stick is not about racing, it is about preference.
I have always driven a BMW with Stick.

However I have Auto at home too (Volvo, Honda Odyssey etc.)...

So stick is not for racing, it is also a family car.
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