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  #1  
Old 01-12-2008, 07:50 PM
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4.4 X5 with 5hp24 problems

For the last 2-3 weeks now I've been dealing with a slipping reverse gear. It would initially slip before fully engaging, but now it has completely stopped moving in reverse period and while down shifting in manual to 1st is occasionally displays no signs of engine braking. All forward gears remain normal otherwise.

I've been doing some research into this and it is either one of two problems;

1-It is a Valve Body issue as per the earlier 5hp30 transmission where it would wear the check balls out thus causing the line pressure to the F clutch pack to be diminished, with the familiar no reverse.

***
5HP30

...In this transmission, the problem is that the plastic ball in the valve body passes through the plate. This problem is solved by installing slightly larger balls. If I hadnít read about this problem numerous times through the aforementioned sources, there is a good chance we would have avoided the repair, or suggested a complete rebuilt unit...

quoted from
http://www.continentalimports.com/ser_ic100076.html
***


2-Or the slightly more complicated F Clutch Issue where the clutch seal itself is likely blown as per the 4hp22.

***
COMPLAINT:
ZF4HP22 NO REVERSE
(F CLUTCH CYLINDER FAILURE)

Vehicles equipped with the ZF4HP22 may come to the shop with a complaint of intermittent or no reverse. All of the other ranges may seem fine.

QUALIFICATION: During the road test it may be noted that there is no engine braking in manual first or second gear.

CAUSE: If an examination of the valve body fails to pin point the problem, an internal inspection will be necessary. Severe ring groove wear on the (F) clutch cylinder where the (E) clutch rides or even ring grooves missing because of wear is possible with a new ring installed on the drum, side clearance should be .003-.006 in.

CORRECTION: A new F clutch cylinder must be installed if any wear or damage is found. New sealing rings must also be installed. Steel rings mast be used for the E clutch sealing grooves.

The part number for the F clutch cylinder is 24-23-1217-088.
***

I've been reading a lot on this forums and like most people on here, i refuse to pay lots of money to have this problem fixed. My issue is instead of BMW diagnosing the actual root of the problem they just opt to replace the entire transmission (vaguely saying the transmission is defective), and for the unlucky ones, usually at our cost.

I can't be exactly sure which problem I have, But I'm hoping it will be problem #1 where it would be a worn out check ball, which would be labour intensive but cheap... If it's #2, I'll deal with that when the time comes.

I'm going to be dropping the pan and removing the valve body and measuring the diameter of the check balls this weekend. This should shed some light onto the subject for me. There is a detailed how-to with pics on the 5hp30 for reference.
http://www.bimmerboard.com/forums/posts/356031

The 5hp24 Valve body itself
http://www.freddiestransmissions.com/CIMG1774.JPG

List of other cars with 5hp24 transmissions that i may steal one out of
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZF_5HP24_transmission

People to talk to
http://www.noreverse.org/repair.html
-ZF Parts passenger car transmission distributor 1-800-660-2269. You can also email your inquiry to passcarinfo@zf.com

Additional Helpful Info
http://www.bavarian-board.co.uk/foru...TID=39297&PN=1


Hopefully someone finds this helpful as it was a real pain to find any information regarding our specific problem. I was hoping someone just like me would have already gone done this path and done this (replaced the check balls) but it doesn't seem like anyone has made that post yet.

If anyone can provide me with anymore detailed information regarding the ZP5HP24, knowledge is power and I'd appreciate that.

Regards,
Frank
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Old 01-12-2008, 07:55 PM
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Old 01-12-2008, 11:18 PM
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Thanks!
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:36 AM
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BLAST!

Well it seems my ranting on about how BMW needlessly replaces transmission was a bit premature in this case. It seems that my problem is actually internal, as i now suspect it's the infamous F Clutch Seal.

This evening I have pulled the VB off the transmission and out of the car, and pulled apart housing 1, 2, 3 and the channel plate on the valve body to find that the little check ball that used to be in housing 3 on the 5hp30 is now replaced by a check valve instead on the 5hp24. The check ball that is in the channel plate is replaced by a metal ball on the 5hp24 versus the Teflon ball on the 5hp30.

Everything else looks normal and clean, I feel quite a bit disappointed at this point as now I know that the extent of my problems is a lot more severe.

I'd be willing to try replacing that seal on my own if anyone can shed some light on that one for me! I can't seem to find any information on that one. BMW TIS or the ZF catalog don't go into any detail...
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swissfrank
I'd be willing to try replacing that seal on my own if anyone can shed some light on that one for me!
Sorry, man. My knowledge of the transmission is limited to vaguely knowing its location. Regardless, good luck and welcome to the board.
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Old 01-13-2008, 02:55 AM
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Sorry, I haven't been inside a BMW automatic (although I understand the valve body and front clutch concepts from other automatics).

From your other current post, it appears you replaced the factory fluid with a non-approved and lower spec fluid, about 40,000 km ago. Now you have an internal failure, it seems.

Do you see any connection here? Is there a possibility that the lower spec fluid may have contributed to an internal failure? Personally, I am in the camp of not changing fluid, as I believe that most of the transmission failures are not caused by fluid degradation as much as they are by sensor failures, and other problems not related to the fluid. I would run the transmission to failure, and then replace it, using only the factory fluid. That is just me, I have no more evidence that this is the most economical approach than those who change the fluid believing that it will help on principle.

I hope you get it sorted out. It would be interesting to understand the sequence of events a little better.
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  #7  
Old 01-13-2008, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCL
From your other current post, it appears you replaced the factory fluid with a non-approved and lower spec fluid, about 40,000 km ago. Now you have an internal failure, it seems.

Do you see any connection here? Is there a possibility that the lower spec fluid may have contributed to an internal failure?...
Thanks for the input. I'm going to play a little bit of devils advocate and offer some food for thought. I'm not discounting your opinion, but I'm a firm believer in changing your fluids, nothing lasts forever.

Yes, the ESSO LT71141 fluid is superior to regular mercon/dexron III but the most notable difference on the specs sheets are the LongLife or LifeTime additives packages that are added to the fluid more so than the sheer properties etc. Esso also says that this specific fluid only has a 3 year shelf life. Three years? How is it supposed to last a life time in an environment that is much harsher than that of a bottle. I have the spec sheets somewhere but I'll save that for another time, to save me going on a rant.

Not to mention I have a land rover with the 4HP24 (basically the same transmission with an extra gear) and it uses mercon/dexron III, and it's kind of funny to see every big car manufacturer (AUDI, BMW, JAGUAR, RANGE ROVER) with the exact same transmission 5HP24 , all use their own "SPECIAL FLUID"... Sounds more like a clever Marketing ploy than science to me. (Especially at $30/liter)

I must say that I am typically pretty abusive to my car, continually redlining my poor baby to say the least, and I am surprised how I have not noted any wear (metal or clutch) in the pan of my transmission since changing the fluid. The old fluid had quite a notable amount of soot and metal, and I particularly point my finger at fluid breakdown. If on the other hand my friction material and clutches burned out or grenaded, yes, at that point I would think using this fluid was definitely a bad idea, but that is not the scenario.

The main reason however, is the fact that we all know that the No Reverse on these transmissions, (X5, 7 SERIES, 5 SERIES and even similar on the 3 SERIES) have been occurring quite prominently, there are even many, many site dedicated to these very symptoms.

http://www.noreverse.org/

Most people have been unlucky and haven't even made it to 170,000km as I have, and lots have considerably lower millage. At the end of the day my point is, this also happens to people that do exactly as BMW says, and leave the transmission fluid intact or replace with the 71141. It may even seem that it actually happens more, but I think this is more due to an internal design flaw. As BMW made recall to the 7 series http://forums.audiworld.com/a8/msgs/150731.phtml

Something else to note is how BMW changed their service schedules a few years ago from the regular changing of all fluids at some point in time to the LifeTime everything after they started including service with purchases of new vehicles...

I have a feeling I may in fact have hit a tender subject, but I welcome the discussion. However I do not endorse the use of non recommended fluids, I just don't feel that paying $30/liter is justified and wanted to prove to myself there were alternatives.

I am trying to get my friend to fix my transmission for a couple cases of beer, I just have to get it out of the x5, and being under the car yesterday it looks as if it is going to be one PITA, anyone have any suggestions?

Regards,
Frank

Last edited by swissfrank; 01-13-2008 at 08:55 PM.
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Old 01-13-2008, 10:44 PM
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Frank:

A thoughtful post, lots of details. A couple of comments:
  • Agree that the fluid is very expensive. Problem is, we don't know exactly what they changed, if anything. I suspect they have some of their own additives, but there isn't a lot of detail available
  • Not sure how you get soot in a transmission, but agree that you could have black sludge. No combustion going on in there, to my knowledge. Probably semantics.
  • Agree that transmission failures happen irrespective of fluid changes. I haven't seen a good analysis that shows the correlation of fluid changes and failures. I know that BMW transmissions don't last as long as many would like, certainly not equal to engine life as an example. I think the fluid is transmission lifetime, not vehicle lifetime. I just don't think that changing the fluid is shown to increase transmission life. While the idea of fresh fluid is appealing, it comes at the cost of disturbing what is there, ie it isn't a free benefit IMO. My sense is that the transmission is going to fail at some point, and driving habits, as well as luck of the draw, has as much to do with it as fluid changes.
  • The No Reverse site is interesting. A bit of a rant, but interesting.
  • I think that the change to included maintenance is not as related to the move to longer term fluid change intervals as some put forth. Fluids are lasting longer whether or not maintenance is included. You don't get transmission fluid change included in your Canadian X5, so it is more of a US theory. Also, BMW continues to pay the warranty costs. Believing that this maintenance practice leads to a failure just after the warranty expires seems too much like a conspiracy plot to me.
  • I do believe strongly in changing fluids. I just don't include automatic transmission fluids in that list. Engine oil, coolant, and brake fluid are at the top of my list. If I owned a vehicle long enough, I would change the power steering fluid. I don't see the need to change the fluid in all compartments, as the contamination paths are different. If I went offroading, I would change diff fluids, for example. I don't think that engine oil change intervals relate to transmission fluid change intervals, due to the lack of combustion byproducts, the sealed nature of the system, etc.
  • Not a tender subject at all, in fact it is an interesting one.
Best of luck in your repairs.

Jeff
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Last edited by JCL; 01-13-2008 at 10:52 PM.
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  #9  
Old 01-14-2008, 03:04 AM
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Jeff,

From previous and current experience on a variety of transmissions, soot comes from the friction material, that very slowly wears down over a very long time, just a powdery substance that is suspended in the fluid and tends to cling to the wall of the transmission, completely normal from everyday use and product of the friction in the transmission when changing gears. You're right no combustion in there at all, that would definitely be cause for alarm.

It would be nice to see transmissions last the life of the entire car...

I Agree that the "No Reverse" website is a bite of a rant, but when dealt the 'No Reverse' cards, I too have already been prone to rant on about it, what a PITA! My problem is I haven't made enough money last year, where I wouldn't have to worry about this, and just take it to my trusty mechanic like old times. Lots of Money fixes everything with ease, and 2008 is the year, haha.

I wasn't meaning there was some conspiracy in place, I do recognize our modern engines run a lot better and cleaner, and the advancements made in fluids and components (well except the one that failed, in my case) have greatly improved. But I had a friend that is a BMW shop foreman, and his biggest issue was when they revised the maintenance program to 30,000km sometimes even more, a lot more cars came in with maintenance related glitches, and he said himself most cars, need to be serviced before that. And from a business stand point since BMW does pay for oil changes etc, it's cheaper for them to extend the intervals until this period is over. Primarily BMW has always used synthetic oils, which tend to last about 20,000km, but before this free oil service program was introduced they recommend 5 or 7,000km service intervals regardless, this is when you had to pay for it. That was my point, BMW seems to want you to do more of it when you have to pay and less when they have to, naturally.


Differentials, that is something else I also serviced, front and rear, they are also seal for life, and I have not done major off roading until recently for the life of my vehicle. But despite the front diff being a sealed system, my diff fluid was black like tar and ran like molasses. My rear diff however was only brown, I have personally noticed that for some reason the Front Diff does run considerably hotter, despite more of the torque supposed to be exiting through the rear wheels.... I did service the diffs again at the next oil change since I had done a lot of off roading, as this is good practice, however all was normal.

I think everything has a shelf life and everything eventually doesn't do its job as good as it once did, and since there is a lot of heat build up in the transmission i think whatever is in there will only be able to do it for so long until it stops. But noted I'm the one sitting here with no reverse and you are not.

Those are the reasons I believe in fluid maintenance, but you have brought up great points. I hope others find our rants useful, haha. Someone just has to come help me take me transmission out now.

Regards,
Frank
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  #10  
Old 01-14-2008, 03:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by statdoc
Sorry, man. My knowledge of the transmission is limited to vaguely knowing its location. Regardless, good luck and welcome to the board.
Thanks for the welcome, I'd kinda like not to have to be so intimate with my transmission though, just knowing it was roughly underneath me and working would have been awesome.
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