Last post on Mar 25, 2013 at 4:00 PM
You are in the BMW 5-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 5 Series, Electrical, Engine, Sedan, Wagon
Go to NHTSA to file a safety complaint.
Or call Monday-Friday (8 am to 8 pm ET) (888) 327-4236 TTY: (800)424-9153
#2167 of 2734 terrible transmission problems
Aug 26, 2008 (1:50 pm)
This is my 4th BMW, having had a 2000 528i, an '03 Z-3, and an '06 330cic. I took delivery of my 528xi in late February 2008. All was good until early May when I got a message on the I-Drive screen that the transmission was overheated, but that the car could still be driven albeit with reduced performance. Since that message appeared, the transmission has developed a severe shifting problem where the car will violently downshift into first gear when accelerating after turning a corner or from a very low speed. It's even worse when turning onto an uphill grade and then accelerating. The BMW Store has been superb in their efforts to repair the car, but unfortunately it seems that the issue is a software problem that BMW engineering has yet to address. I have been told that they are working on the problem and that hopefully an update will be available sometime in September. The person at BMW's customer service department with whom I spoke was of no help whatsoever and was actually quite condescending during our conversation. I have now driven my car 4 months with this shifting problem, and am hoping that no internal hard part damage is being done to the transmission when it slams into first gear. Has anyone else experienced anything similar?
#2168 of 2734 Re: terrible transmission problems [andrewky33]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Aug 26, 2008 (2:01 pm)
SI B 24 23 07
This Service Information bulletin supersedes SI B24 23 07 dated December 2007.
[NEW] designates changes to this revision
6-Speed Automatic Transmissions Diagnosis and Troubleshooting Hints
All with ZF 6HP transmission
All with GM6 transmission
Diagnosing symptoms involving 6-speed automatic transmissions and determining the root causes of the complaints are the areas where specialized assistance is often needed. Due to the high cost and complexity of the 6-speed automatic transmissions, an Enhanced Technical Support process has been developed to help identify the root causes of customer complaints relating to Automatic Transmissions concerns.
All diagnostic and troubleshooting steps listed in this Service Bulletin should be performed prior to submitting a PuMA case ("TC Case" or regular technical support "Case").
A PuMA case may be submitted ONLY after all appropriate diagnostic steps and/or hints listed below were performed and diagnostic results are inconclusive (regular technical support case), or when a component replacement (transmission, Mechatronic, or VB-TECHM) is requested ("TC Case"). Such a PuMA case has to include all the necessary information required by B24 23 07.
IMPORTANT Both "TC Cases" and regular technical support "Cases" are NOT going to be processed, and will be rejected as "unjustified", if the basic diagnostic troubleshooting procedures and pertaining information required by SI B24 23 07 are not performed and submitted.
When diagnosing the 6-speed automatic transmission complaints, the following troubleshooting steps should be performed, and required information needs to be included in a PuMA contact (both "TC Case" or a regular technical support case):
1. Customer Concern
^ Drive the vehicle to reproduce the customer's complaint.
^ Be as specific as possible when describing the issue at hand, including the exact driving and environmental conditions required to reproduce the complaint. ("Transmission is shifting badly" will create more questions than answers).
^ If the complaint cannot be verified, contact the customer to obtain a specific description of the problem. If possible, test drive with the customer, observing any unusual driving habits (e.g., "Two-footed driver").
2. FASTA Data
^ Perform a "Short Test" and transmit the FASTA data prior to programming or troubleshooting. In many instances, the "uncontaminated" FASTA information may be helpful in determining the root cause.
3. Transmission Fluid Level/Fluid Condition
^ Check the fluid level for all transmission concerns, even if there are no obvious signs of external leakage.
^ Follow the appropriate fluid level checking procedures. The main items to remember are:
^ Check the level at fluid temperature between 30°to 50°C.
^ Engine running at idle.
^ Transmission in Park.
^ Vehicle leveled and secured against movements.
^ If the fluid does not flow out when the plug is removed, then add the appropriate amount until it trickles out. DO NOT insert your fingers into the filler hole to check where the transmission fluid is! !!
^ Make sure that you are checking the fluid level at the correct filler (overflow) plug, since they have different locations. (On the E53 with 6HP26, the overflow plug is in the pan; on other applications, it is located on the side or at the rear of the transmission.)
4. Transmission Shift Concerns and Fluid Leaks
^ Adjust and/or correct the fluid level, and then clear the EGS adaptation values and test drive.
^ If the shift issue is resolved, then address the root cause of the leak.
^ If the complaint is unresolved, then submit a PuMA case for further instruction.
5. External Damage
^ Inspect the transmission oil pan for obvious signs of impact.
^ Inspect the external shift or emergency release cable adjustment, bracket and lever.
6. Transmission Fault Codes
^ Diagnostic fault codes are an essential tool for troubleshooting. Print and secure the fault codes before clearing. Perform all applicable DIS/GT1 test plans as prompted by the EGS fault codes stored.
^ For the EDS (pressure regulators) and the MV (magnetic valves) fault codes, check the environmental conditions when the faults were set. In general, electronic transmission control units work correctly when the voltage range is between 10V and 15V. If the fault codes environmental conditions indicate voltage below 10V or above 15V, then troubleshoot vehicle's electrical system, e.g., the battery, battery connections, grounds, charging system, the integrity of the vehicle's transmission harness and its connector (X85xx).
^ Prioritize the relevance of all driveability-related faults stored in the DME, DSC or EGS control modules. For example, if the vehicle ran out of fuel and the engine stalled, the consecutive misfire and transmission gear monitoring faults (slippage faults) are irrelevant. Various engine driveability complaints ("stumbling, poor running, hesitation") caused by poor fuel quality may also result in transmission shift quality complaints.
7. Aftermarket Equipment
^ Inspect the vehicle for the presence of any aftermarket equipment (including wheels and tires), or software which may affect vehicle performance or may cause customer concern.
^ Mention any modifications to the vehicle (e.g., "Conversion to a stretch limo") in the submitted PuMA case.
8. Programming Replacement Transmissions and Mechatroniks/VB-TECHMs
^ Print the short and the long EGS ID page before removing the transmission or Mechatronik (VB-TECHM). You may need the part numbers for the programming of the replacement unit. Refer to SI B24 18 07 (Programming of replacement Transmission or Mechatronic) for helpful hints on EGS programming.
^ On vehicles equipped with the GWS gear shifter, prior to transmission or Mechatronic replacement, perform the "EWS Reset Function" using the DIS/GT1 path: "Service Functions/Transmission control/Calibrations/EWS Reset/Test plan".
9. Repair History
^ Check the repair history to see if there were any recent repairs that could affect the proper operation of the transmission. (If the vehicle returns with a transmission slippage concern after an oil leak repair, chances are that the transmission fluid level is incorrect, causing a new driveability complaint.)
10. SI Bulletins
^ Check to see if there are any Service Information Bulletins that apply to your specific complaint. Make sure that both "subject" content and the affected vehicle model match your case.
^ Follow the SI B instructions exactly. (SI B24 14 07 states that the guibo needs to be removed for the inspection; a visual external inspection will not be sufficient to reveal the loose bushings that we are checking it for.)
11. Vehicle VIN Number
^ Double check the VIN number before submitting a PuMA case. The incorrect VIN will prevent access to FASTA information. Also, the requested IBAC programming codes will not work with an incorrect VIN.
12. [NEW] Transmission Serial Number/Part Number
^ Always provide a transmission serial number and part number from the transmission's ID tag. The transmission serial number is an essential piece of information needed by the Hotline Expert; it is especially useful on repeat complaints afier a transmission replacement.
13. PuMA Reporter and Valid Phone Number
^ Preferably, the reporter listed in the PuMA case should also be the person who works on the vehicle. If it's not possible, mention your name in the "Work performed" section of the case.
^ Always provide a direct and a valid phone number so that you can be easily contacted if necessary by the Transmission Expert.
14. Warranty, CPO or Goodwill Replacements
^ Transmission and Mechatronik/VB-TECHM replacements covered under BMW Warranty, Goodwill or Certified Pre-Owned programs require PuMA authorization. Use the PuMA contact number as your replacement authorization. Refer to SI B24 09 00 (Automatic Transmission Repair & Replacement) for more details.
^ Goodwill considerations also require you to contact your BMW NA field representative and to inform him of the PuMA case and your intentions.
#2169 of 2734 Looking for independant Chicago bmw service shop
Sep 02, 2008 (7:33 pm)
Hi I just purchased a 2002 530iA with 57k from a BMW dealership.Never had a 5 before. Had a 04 330xi before but this car is much more my thing.I love it ( 2 days in)
After looking through the great forum info I think it would be good to find an independent BMW technician.Does anyone know of anybody out this way? I live in the southwest suburbs of Chicago.
I guesst he car is due for its Service 2 at 60k
Approx how much does a Inspection/Service 2 cost at a dealership?
The car as documented history through 40k and then nothing. Which worries me a little but i hope that getting it from a BMW dealership means that the work they did on it ( $1400 worth) when they took it in means I'm not gonna be stuck with a wallet sucking car.
#2170 of 2734 Re: Looking for independant Chicago bmw service shop [wax_71]
Sep 02, 2008 (8:35 pm)
Does anyone know of anybody out this way? I live in the southwest suburbs of Chicago.
Bimrs.org has a website listing member repair shops, all are BMW Specialists (including the folks who take care of my car). There's several in Illinois.
Or you could join the BMW Car Club of America and check their database,
Good luck with your E39.
#2171 of 2734 Re: Looking for independant Chicago bmw service shop [wax_71]
Sep 03, 2008 (10:00 am)
Approx how much does a Inspection/Service 2 cost at a dealership?
Swope BMW in Louisville, Ky only charged $382 to perform an Inspection II on my wife's 2004 X3 2.5- and that figure included a brake fluid flush as well as the cost of repairing a bit of curb rash on the RF wheel. I brought my own Mobil 1 0W-40 so the grand total was $424.
As for indie shops, I'm sure that members of the local CCA chapter(Windy City) would be happy to provide recommendations.
And let me echo what Andy said; enjoy your 5er. The E39 is still one of the best sports/luxury sedans out there.
#2172 of 2734 HVAC fan speed
Sep 16, 2008 (7:13 pm)
Guys I need help. I tried to look in the past discussions to see if I find something on my problem but found nothing. Anyway I have a 2002, 530i BMW 5-speed stick that has been a great car except for one thing. When I turn on the fan to get some air in the car (or even with A/C) the speed of the fan suddenly goes high and then low as if someone just arbitrarily changes the fan speed, quickly. If I shut the fan off completely I still can hear it run. The bad thing is that even when I shut the engine off and take the keys out, the fan still runs and it typically stops after about 5-10 minutes. But apparently last time it must have been running longer than usual so it drained the battery. One other electrical snafu that I have with this car is that sometimes when I put a CD to play it says “no disc” but after about 5-10 minutes of driving it starts to play.
I just need some guidance so when I take it in for repair then I have some ideas. Thanks a bunch.
#2173 of 2734 Re: HVAC fan speed [jhox85]
Sep 16, 2008 (8:33 pm)
I just need some guidance so when I take it in for repair then I have some ideas.
The problem is almost certainly what BMW calls the Final Stage Unit. It's an extremely simple DIY fix. The how-to can be found here. You should be able to find the part for under $90.
As for the CD changer, you might try a different CD magazine to see if the problem persists. Failing that, you will have to take it to an auto sound shop.
#2174 of 2734 Re: HVAC fan speed [roadburner]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Sep 17, 2008 (8:33 am)
What IS that thing exactly?
#2175 of 2734 Re: HVAC fan speed [Mr_Shiftright]
Sep 17, 2008 (10:22 am)
What IS that thing exactly?
As I understand it, the FSU is essentially a somewhat complex resistor pack- which explains the strange HVAC fan behavior when it goes bad.
#2176 of 2734 Re: HVAC fan speed [roadburner]
Sep 17, 2008 (6:01 pm)
the FSU is essentially a somewhat complex resistor pack
Leave it those German engineers, the Ashtray in my Bimmer has like 20 parts.