1990 535i automatic no thrid gear - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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#1 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 01:19 PM
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1990 535i automatic no thrid gear

I just bought a 1990 BMW 535i for $400.00 from a car auction. It's an automatic with about 220,000 miles on it. I got the car to use in the 24 hours of lemons race. When driving the car, it would "grab" like the brakes were catching. My father was driving the car and said that a "Transmission Error: was displayed. Then all the sudden the transmission quit. I changed the transmission fluid and the filter. Now the car will go into forward and reverse, but the car will not shift to third gear. When the car does try to shift to third, the wheels lock up like the parking brake was engaged. There is no transmission error displaying. Does anybody know what is wrong here? Thanks
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#2 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 01:22 PM
OMFG another one!?
 
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I hate to say it, but I'm fairly sure that there's a very serious problem. It's not likely to be any less than a complete rebuild.

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#3 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 02:17 PM
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The car will do into third gear if M is selected instead of E. (You put the selector on 3 instead of D) When I changed the fluid, there was a lot of grim and nasty stuff in the pan. Is it possible that something i clogged up inside the case?
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#4 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 03:48 PM
OMFG another one!?
 
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Yeah, the classic super old fluid. I bet it needs a major flushing.

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#5 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 08:03 PM
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I put dextron VI in it because that is what the advanced auto parts store said it took. Does it take dextron II or something else?

I drained the transmission again and filled it back up with fuild then drove it again. This time the car tried to shift but didn't really want to unless you played with the gas. Still no Thrid gear though. Then all the sudden lots of white smoke poured out the back of the car. Looks like the transmission fluid busted out the back of the tranny somewhere and hit the exhaust. The car still goes forward and backward though.

Do you know how much a rebuild kit costs and where to get one from? I may attempt to rebuild it myself if the kit doesn't cost much. Since I am building this car for the 24 hours of lemons race I can't spend more than 500 bucks (you can sell stuff of the car to counteract money you spend though).
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#6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2009, 08:08 PM
OMFG another one!?
 
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I'm not very familiar with auto rebuild kits (a manual driver I am). You may have an easier time doing a manual swap. Or maybe you can find the same tranny in better shape from a pick and pull yard.

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#7 (permalink) Old 06-01-2009, 04:50 AM
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Strange about the white smoke as an auto box is in no way under pressure, so maybe an internal part has actually smashed through the casing and caused fluid to pour out, your best bet would be to find a 2nd hand box.

A rebuild on an auto box is very difficult and not like a manual box rebuild which is quite easy and you have to have basically hospital laboratory clean working conditions

If I remember correctly there are something like 2000 parts in an auto box.

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