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E60 525i 2004 Transmission issues

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E60 525i 2004 Transmission issues

Old 01-11-2019, 05:08 AM
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Angry E60 525i 2004 Transmission issues

Hello everyone. I'm kind of new member here on forums, and as Introduction link is not working, I'll gonna write few words about my E60 issue.

I bought this car before 8 months. I am very happy with the car, except tranny issues, that I'll try to explain below:



Since purchase I have strange RPM slips, that have become more aggressive lately. I've purchased car with about 190000 KM on clock.
After purchase, I went to local service guy (Not an BMW dealer) and he changed gearbox oil and replaced Oil filter(pan). After that, "RPMs" were stabile for some time (3K KM) and after that started showing up again. That (I call it slipping) firstly occured on low speeds (like driving 60 KMph in D on 1500RPMs) and now (after 20k) slippings started to occur all the time.
Here is video of my transmission issues. Is there any advice - what can be done with this?


Also, Engine is M54 and Gearbox is ZFs 6HP19-21.
There is no engine or Transmission faults when connected to diag. :S

Last edited by Aleksandar Basic; 01-11-2019 at 06:51 AM.
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Old 01-11-2019, 08:49 AM
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Hi Aleksandar,

unfortunately it's your torque converter. You have to change it. No other repair is possible.

You do have a nice interior, wow!
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Old 01-11-2019, 10:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Giubo View Post
Hi Aleksandar,

unfortunately it's your torque converter. You have to change it. No other repair is possible.

You do have a nice interior, wow!
She is pretty nice for an 15 yo lady, I agree on that.

Is there any Tourqe Converter compatibility list available, as I'm unable to find any salvaged 525i around me, who is willing to sell only tourqe converter (W/o whole transmission)

thanks for your reply, Giubo!
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Old 01-20-2019, 05:16 AM
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When you swap a trans, it needs to be registered with your on board computer.
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Old 01-20-2019, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Rookiemistake View Post
When you swap a trans, it needs to be registered with your on board computer.
We are talking about swapping a whole transmission unit or just a Tourqe Converter?
I think it can be changed separatly.

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Old 01-20-2019, 11:08 AM
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Alex-- I guess I'm a little skeptical of the torque converter comment without more data.

When the mechanic did the fluid swap, how many liters of fluid did he pump into it? Should be around 5-6 for a fluid refresh with pan.
Did he use LG6, or another fluid?
What color and odor was the dumped fluid?
Was this the first time the fluid had ever been changed?
Are you aware of any previous mechanical work on the transmission?
Have you run BMW code scans on the car and specifically the transmission? INPA or ISTA will help.
It's not unusual for other basic ZF problems to occur at your mileage: the rubber connections between the mechatronics (valve body) and the transmission dry up and/or crack, causing fluid pressure to drop. The actuators can get clogged or restricted over time.
You should get codes for these, but it's not guaranteed unfortunately.
At the least, take the car to a genuine ZF service station for a tranny check before you pursue a new torque converter.
Very well-kept E60. Good luck

Last edited by banglenot; 01-20-2019 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 01-20-2019, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by banglenot View Post
Alex-- I guess I'm a little skeptical of the torque converter comment without more data.

When the mechanic did the fluid swap, how many liters of fluid did he pump into it? Should be around 5-6 for a fluid refresh with pan.
Did he use LG6, or another fluid?
What color and odor was the dumped fluid?
Was this the first time the fluid had ever been changed?
Are you aware of any previous mechanical work on the transmission?
Have you run BMW code scans on the car and specifically the transmission? INPA or ISTA will help.
It's not unusual for other basic ZF problems to occur at your mileage: the rubber connections between the mechatronics (valve body) and the transmission dry up and/or crack, causing fluid pressure to drop. The actuators can get clogged or restricted over time.
You should get codes for these, but it's not guaranteed unfortunately.
At the least, take the car to a genuine ZF service station for a tranny check before you pursue a new torque converter.
Very well-kept E60. Good luck
OP, of all of the responses that are in this thread THIS one is the only one you want to pay attention to. Also, please search the DIY section of this forum as I outlined transmission problems I was having and how I resolved them. Best of luck to you.
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Old 01-20-2019, 10:47 PM
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did you reset the adaptations after the oil change? When I had my transmission serviced, after I left the shop the transmission was all over the place, gears were changing violently, it clearly was not working properly, I had to go to BMW and they reset my adaptations, everything went back to normal afterwards.

if the transmission slips, there should be some transmission faults stored.
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Old 01-21-2019, 08:53 AM
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Guys, thanks for your interest in helping me solve this annoying issue.

I’m not sure but I think it took 6 liters of fluid. Fluid was dark but no weird smell. Also, I’ve checked fluid level by myself few days ago, and fluid is mild dark and there is no “strange” odor - it smells almost like new oil. It’s not ZF’s LG6 oil, it is ALPINE ATF 6 HP. Fluid pan isn’t ZF’s genuine , it is some replacement one I found here in Bosnia - Febi or something.
I haven’t found any previous records of any work done on transmission, so I think that it’s first time anyone changing fluids.
As of errors, I’ve scanned all systems with Delphi when I’ve checked fluid temperature few days ago, and there was only 51ad error shown. Also, car was checked by local BMW station 3 months ago, no errors found on transmission, but symptoms were lot weaker then (symptoms from attached video, was only noticeable when going constant speed at motorway and RPM slip amplitude was lot smaller than it is now).

I’ve erased that error and will get car connected again tomorrow to Delphi. I’ll try to find INPA also and try to find more error codes.
As of nearby ZF service, I live in Bosnia and Hercegovina, Europe, so nearest ZF center is in Germany and like 500 miles from me.

@KyleB I’ve looked through your DIY post related to 6HP19 rebuild, and I was planning to get replacement rubber sleeves and get that changed sometime in future. Just unsure where to purchase genuine ones (Only chinese ones from ebay available to ship to me, so I assume that I’ll have to get that shipped to friend in Sarasota).

As of adaptation reset, I did that via Delphi but haven't noticed any change in transmission from “regular. I’m not sure was that done upon fluid and pan change, so one more reason to find IMPA tomorrow and get that done for sure.

Also I’ve noticed that there is small “punch” when changing from 2>1 gear. Everything else with transmission seems to be fine.
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Old 01-21-2019, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Aleksandar Basic View Post
Guys, thanks for your interest in helping me solve this annoying issue.

I’m not sure but I think it took 6 liters of fluid. Fluid was dark but no weird smell. Also, I’ve checked fluid level by myself few days ago, and fluid is mild dark and there is no “strange” odor - it smells almost like new oil. It’s not ZF’s LG6 oil, it is ALPINE ATF 6 HP. Fluid pan isn’t ZF’s genuine , it is some replacement one I found here in Bosnia - Febi or something.
I haven’t found any previous records of any work done on transmission, so I think that it’s first time anyone changing fluids.
As of errors, I’ve scanned all systems with Delphi when I’ve checked fluid temperature few days ago, and there was only 51ad error shown. Also, car was checked by local BMW station 3 months ago, no errors found on transmission, but symptoms were lot weaker then (symptoms from attached video, was only noticeable when going constant speed at motorway and RPM slip amplitude was lot smaller than it is now).

I’ve erased that error and will get car connected again tomorrow to Delphi. I’ll try to find INPA also and try to find more error codes.
As of nearby ZF service, I live in Bosnia and Hercegovina, Europe, so nearest ZF center is in Germany and like 500 miles from me.

@KyleB I’ve looked through your DIY post related to 6HP19 rebuild, and I was planning to get replacement rubber sleeves and get that changed sometime in future. Just unsure where to purchase genuine ones (Only chinese ones from ebay available to ship to me, so I assume that I’ll have to get that shipped to friend in Sarasota).

As of adaptation reset, I did that via Delphi but haven't noticed any change in transmission from “regular. I’m not sure was that done upon fluid and pan change, so one more reason to find IMPA tomorrow and get that done for sure.

Also I’ve noticed that there is small “punch” when changing from 2>1 gear. Everything else with transmission seems to be fine.
If you are not getting any "ratio monitoring" codes but your transmission is behaving erratically I would seriously think about removing your valve body and replacing the adapter seal and four sealing sleeves between the transmission casing and the valve body. Not only that, I would highly recommend replacing your gearbox fluid with ZF Lifeguard 6. Improper fluid can cause problems As long as your transmission pan is comparable to the ZF one I wouldn't worry too much about it being from Febi. Don't forget to reset adaptations in EGS after you do any servicing of your transmission. Good luck!
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