93-325 Manual Tranny won't shift while the car is running - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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#1 (permalink) Old 06-03-2010, 12:35 AM
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93-325 Manual Tranny won't shift while the car is running

Hello all, First time writer, long time driver... I have a 93 325 with 139457 miles on the Tranny. I had the clutch plate and assy changed out approximately 2 weeks ago. The car shifted just right with no issues, then I turned on the A/C 2 days ago (not sure if this is actually related) but now, I must turn the car off and on several times before I can shift the car into gear.
Oh… when the car is off, I can shift into any gear without an issue… Please tell me this is an easy fix and that anyone can do this repair. (Anyone is actually referring to me of course)

THX for your input
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#2 (permalink) Old 06-03-2010, 06:12 AM
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Something is wrong with the clutch causing it to not disengage; I'm just having a hard time figuring out what starting and shutting off the car has to do with it that fixes it. Does it eventually start to go into gear if you just keep pushing and releasing the clutch a bunch while its running?

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#3 (permalink) Old 06-03-2010, 10:05 AM
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Hey Dr. Torque... I have no clue why turning the car on and off helps with the tranny. I thought it may have something to do with a sensor of some sort. I also tried jamming it into gear while the car is on (clutch pushed in / disengaged) and it does nothing. I tired putting it in gear (reverse), then turning the car on and it stays engaged, but once I remove it from the gear... it starts all over again. I know in automatics, theres a neutral switch, so I thought maybe theres something similar in manual trans?
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#4 (permalink) Old 06-04-2010, 05:29 PM
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Make sure that all the air has been bled out of the clutch hydraulic system. If there is no air in the system, chances are that the clutch master or slave cylinder have failed - externally this may show up as clutch fluid weeping from the master or slave cylinder, trickling down the outside or inside of the firewall or dripping onto the floor mat/garage floor.
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#5 (permalink) Old 06-04-2010, 05:34 PM
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Something with the hydraulic system most likely.



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#6 (permalink) Old 06-04-2010, 06:46 PM
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You all are great help...I will check it out this weekend. It is strange to me that I have to play with the ignition to get it going, but I can see it being a hydraulic issue... THANKS AGAIN.
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#7 (permalink) Old 06-05-2010, 09:22 PM
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this happened to me about 6 months ago, it was my pressure plate from the clutch one of the springs busted apart and got lodged in the trans. because i continued to try and drive my car for a few days it ended up costing me the whole transmission. and a 6 week wait to find a replacement because there werent any within 2000 miles. i recommend getting it to the shop asap. for me i could put it in gear and shift perfect with the car off but if i turned the car on i was screwed, i thought the problem went away a few times but it didnt
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#8 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 04:42 PM
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Thx JM... I checked the hydraulic system and it appeared just fine... I guess I'm gonna have to take it back to the mech that worked on the clutch... I'll update everyone once I get it fully repaired.
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#9 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 05:21 PM
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if you changed the flywheel from a dual mass flywheel to a single mass flywheel you pressure plate for the clutch will have 4 springs on it embeded in it, on mine it was also a brand new clutch and one of the springs went right away
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#10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 05:41 PM
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Hey JM...I think you are correct... It happened after turning on my A/C and I just spoke with another Mech and he informed me that a Dual mass Flywheel is installed in vehicles that have A/C or if you are a heavy A/C user... I think my mech used a single mass flywheel instead to save himself money, because he charged me $1500 to R&R the Clutch and some other stuff..
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#11 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 05:44 PM
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thats the clutch he should have put in and he should have only hit you with 400 for labor.
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#12 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 05:45 PM
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make sure he covers any replacement parts because he is liable to honor the warrantys.
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#13 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 05:46 PM
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ps you can use a single mass flywheel but he had to make sure to use the proper pressure plate and what not. id put 20 buck on it to say its one of the springs on the plate
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#14 (permalink) Old 06-06-2010, 10:25 PM
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You can't inspect the slave cylinder without removing it from the bell housing. Usually if it fails the pedal goes to the floor and stays there. At that mileage the dual mass flywheel, that all stock BMWs have wouldn't need to be replaced unless it was damaged from excessive slippage.


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#15 (permalink) Old 06-08-2010, 01:40 AM
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So here is the latest… I desperately needed to get to work today, so I started the car without using the clutch and the car shifted excellently. Go figure. So I decided to take the ride out again for lunch - without the clutch and bam – no issue.
Then I decided to push my luck and visit a friend about 45 minutes away and that was it… The limit. It started all over again. Now I have to shut the car off, and then start it again without pushing in the clutch. And it works for about 5 minutes. UGH!!!
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