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Thread: 540i/a Shifting

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Germany
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phatty5BMW
    Once the car is warm, the problem is eliminated. The car was fine when we got it, I did a "shogun reset" everything was fine, until about a week later.
    So the reset 'fixes' the cold shifting problem, if only for a week at a time? That sounds like a funky trans computer. If it was a sticking solenoid or something mechanical in the valve body, what difference would it make, resetting the trans computer?

    My knowledge/experience with this car is not that great but this possible temperature-related electrical problem sounds like others I've seen in other cars/systems.

    I guess the good news is, if the trans computer is dying a slow death, it will one day confirm its ill health by dying outright.

    Brian

  2. #2
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    Feb 2005
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    Geneseo, Illinois
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    Default 540i/a Shifting

    Hey guys my dad bought a 95 540/a. With the car cold, at first drive off the trans is wanting to go to 4k rpms before shifting. Its never done this in the first few weeks of ownership, but seems to be doing it more often. Its doing this in second gear. First gear seems to be ok, but its second gear thats doing it. Once the car is warm, the problem is eliminated. The car was fine when we got it, I did a "shogun reset" everything was fine, until about a week later. Is there any cables or anything that can be adjusted?

    I feel like a total noob right now but whatever, I am asking your guys opinon. My 535 has never had a shifting issue so I don't know where to start. He is in Chicago right now with the car, he is going to do another reset on it and maybe see if that clears it up. Any info would really be appreciated!! Thanks guys!

    -Pat

  3. #3
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    Feb 2004
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    What is the mileage on that car? I would change the fluid and filter at this point.

  4. #4
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    Feb 2005
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    Geneseo, Illinois
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsell
    So the reset 'fixes' the cold shifting problem, if only for a week at a time? That sounds like a funky trans computer. If it was a sticking solenoid or something mechanical in the valve body, what difference would it make, resetting the trans computer?

    My knowledge/experience with this car is not that great but this possible temperature-related electrical problem sounds like others I've seen in other cars/systems.

    I guess the good news is, if the trans computer is dying a slow death, it will one day confirm its ill health by dying outright.

    Brian

    Well see thats the weird thing. The car didn't do anything abnormal when he bought it.

    Car still shifted fine up until I did the reset procedure on it.

    About a week or so AFTER the reset procedure, it started hanging up on second gear. This is why I am a little stumped if it would be an electrical issue or mechanical. There was no trans problem up until then. I am not saying the reset caused it at all, just wondering if anyone knows what it may be or what I can check. Thanks guys.

    -Pat

  5. #5
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    Feb 2005
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    Geneseo, Illinois
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiger
    What is the mileage on that car? I would change the fluid and filter at this point.
    158,xxx is the mileage on it. I have been reading posts about the whole lifetime fluid thing. What is the best recomendation that you guys think. I know there is a lot of technical posts on here, but an easy answer would be great From what we know and what it looked like, the car had been serviced at a bmw dealer most of its life. Everything is damn near immaculate on it, and this is really the first issue that we have come acrossed so far.

    -Pat

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, PA.
    Posts
    571

    Default call Kirt Koeller the 5hp30 expert............

    Full Name: Kirt Koeller
    Job Title: ZF Transmission Expert
    Company: Auto Sports Unlimited

    Business: (800) 624-3876 ex 5735
    Business 2: (616) 748-5735

    E-mail: europetransman@hotmail.com

  7. #7
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    Tampa Bay, Florida, USA
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    I screwed around with this very issue last year at around 153K.
    First, I'd check under the car for any sign of leaks. Your fluid level may be down. In my case, I didnt have a leak.
    Changed the fluid and filter. The filter was the old style which had collapsed on itself.
    Get a Filtran filter from BMW dealer; fluid was Pennzoil Multivehicle ATF.
    Cheap, and it works.
    Did the "slop fluid in the face" fillup. Look in the archives for the fluid/filter R&R.
    It was fine for about three months. Changed the fluid again.
    It improved for another 3 months then the shifting went dangerously bad.
    I finally replaced with a rebuilt 5HP30 last month.
    I checked my records and the valve body had been replaced by BMW/ZF at 85K. So i figured the trans was just wearing out.
    Ramon
    1994 540iA Nikasil EAT Chip
    Tampa Bay, Florida USA

  8. #8
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    I still would do a fluid and filter change first. My car, at 105,000 miles, my valve body went caput. I had Kirt rebuid it for me and I reinstalled it with new fluids and filter. I used Pennzoil MultiVehicle ATF... this is 2001 or 2. I think I was the first to use it. No problem ever since.

    I would change the fluid a couple of times before I actually change the filter if I were you. Drain and fill it with Pennzoil ATF 2 times and wait a couple days of driving in between. By the third time, I would drop the pan and change the filter too.

    When I did my valve body, virtually all the fluid came out... I collected nearly 10 quarts and put in I think about 11 as I did lose some new fluid. No problem with tranny since then.

    As for MBXB's case, I think his rebuilt valve body was failing... maybe worn gear selenoid and/or speed sensor. He said it was running beautiful and all of the sudden it start slipping... sounds like valve body to me. I am not sure if his car was a city car or highway or average... all is a serious factor on condition of the transmission.

  9. #9
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    Nobody else has any suggestions?

    -Pat

  10. #10
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    Before I went thru all that fluid changing, I did the 'shogun' reset several times, and even swapped out the trans chip; eliminating the chip as a possible problem. So the next step was the fluid/filter.
    Ramon
    1994 540iA Nikasil EAT Chip
    Tampa Bay, Florida USA

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