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DIY: Do It Yourself
Post here to share or improve your wrench turning skills! All BMW E46 DIY tips, tales, and projects discussed inside. Learn to work on your car and know the right BMW parts you will need!

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Old 06-18-2012, 12:39 PM   #1
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Project ZF 5HP19 transmission: Oil pan and filter

Oil Pan and Filter

Link to other parts of the project

This can be accessed with the transmission still in the car. The procedure is generally done to replace the oil and filter. This is described well in other posts, so I won't labour the point.

On the subject of changing the oil in your transmission, here is a bit of background information for those who haven't heard it before. A lot probably have.

A number of years ago, some of the car manufacturers got into a bit of a competition with each other to have the longest interval between services. Also, what was found was that the highest risk of transmission failure was due to poor workmanship, and foreign stuff getting inside the transmission when it was opened up for a service. They decided to make the oil a lifetime item. That means never open it up unless you are doing serious work on it.

Here is my own experience of doing an oil and filter change. My wife has an Audi Allroad. It has the 4WD version of the 5HP19. We bought the car used with about 120,000 km on the clock. Soon after we bought it, it started vibrating significantly under hard acceleration. I spoke to a specialist transmission firm, and they said the first thing they would do was change the fluid and filter. They said it sounded like one of the clutches was slipping, possibly in the torque converter. So I changed the fluid and filter. Much better. I drove the car for about 1000km then changed the fluid again (as people may know, changing the oil by the normal method doesn't change what's in the torque converter). Huge change. The vibrating stopped, and the car drove miles better. I now change the oil and filter every 10,000 km, and 50,000km later it still drives great. I think, from personal experience, that an oil and filter change should be essential regular maintenance.

Interestingly, what the magnets in the oil pan looked like on the Audi when I first opened it up was very similar to my BMW (which was operating flawlessly), which was similar to the photos below. Very little wear of the transmission components. It was all of the other junk in the oil, as well as the oil breaking down that was the issue.

If you want your transmission to work well and for a long time, clearly an oil and filter change is essential at regular intervals. The oil will break down with time, it gets filled with all the clutch particles, and the filter will obviously get more clogged with time.

Whilst this is more involved than an engine oil change, it's not hard. You need to follow the procedure correctly, otherwise you will have issues. Problems I've heard of are the pan bolts coming loose creating leaks, or the filling procedure not being done correctly. Do it correctly and you won't have problems.

The procedure is:
1. Put the car on jacks. It must be level for the filling procedure, so it needs to be now. The filling hole is at the back of the transmission. If the car isn't level, the oil level won't be correct. This is a problem. The normal oil level is actually quite close to the spinning components of the transmission. If the oil level is too high, it can cause frothing, which will put lots of air bubbles in the fluid. This can create lots of problems. Air in hydraulic units (ie. The valve body) stops them from working properly. Also oil flown around the transmission will be affected. If the oil level is low, it may be starved of oil during manoeuvre. Obvious issues.

2. Drain the oil. You will get about 6 litres.

3. Remove the pan. Clean it up and the magnets.

4. Remove oil filter and replace.

5. Replace pan with new gasket. Use loctite on the bolts. Don't tighten diagonally, but one after the other going around the pan.

6. Pump new fluid through the filling hole until oil is dripping out the hole. Don't put the plug back in the hole. The transmission should be cold when you do this. After you've pumped the oil in, replace the plug and hand tighten.

7. Get in the car and start the engine. Put your foot on the brake, and change gears numerous times through all the gears. Hold the gears for approximately 3 seconds before changing again. When you run the car, the pump will now suck oil up into the transmission and fill it everywhere. Changing the gears ensures that all the passages in the valve body are full.

8. Put into Park, and with the engine still running, get back under the car, remove the filler plug and pump more fluid into the transmission until it drips out of the filling hole again. This is now the correct fluid level, however it needs to be at the correct temperature. The correct temp is 30-50 deg C. If you don't have an OBD DIS to give you a readout of this, then just put your hand on the pan. When it feels nice and warm, this is the right time. This will take very little time as the BMW system of transmission oil cooling actually warms it when it is below normal operating temperature. As the oil warms, it will expand and a little more fluid will flow out the filler hole. When the oil is at the correct temperature, put the filler plug in and torque correctly. Don't turn the engine off until you have put the filler plug back in otherwise a whole lot of fluid will flow out of the filler hole.

There are some differences between the ZF manual and BMW TIS regards the tightening torques. I've quoted below the ZF manual and the TIS in brackets. Personally I'm going to use the BMW TIS because the pan on the BMW is different to what it on the Audi (it seems they are brand specific), so I'm going to assume that BMW has worked out that this is the correct torque for their pans. Also, I've never had any leaks from the transmissions I've done this to, and I've use the BMW TIS torque specs for these.

Oil filler 35 Nm (30 Nm)
Oil drain 30 Nm (35 Nm)
Oil pan 10 Nm (6 Nm)
Filter bolts 6 Nm (6 Nm)

Here are some photos to help you out.

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Last edited by jjrichar; 06-18-2012 at 01:03 PM. Reason: correction
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Old 08-16-2012, 01:05 PM   #2
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DIY - Transmission ATF Pan Installation

Installing the ATF pan with the gasket proved to be a challenge when the car is supported by Race Ramps or jack stands. With limited clearance, visibility and mobility, it is difficult to ensure the gasket is correctly aligned with the installation holes.
Example applies to the 5HP19 A5S325Z ZF transmission.
The screws and the threaded holes must be clean and free of contaminants since the screw preload depends on the torque applied.

Temporarily install CLEAN M6-1 x 25mm “Allen” set screws (jig) into the transmission body to facilitate the insertion of the pan. Install a minimum of 4 screws, one on each side of the pan attachment.

The gasket is very thin, .020 inches thick. The gasket thickness and material was designed to seal the precision interface and to retain the initial screw preload, not to fill in voids.

Apply a little dab of petroleum jelly (Vaseline) in a few places outboard and between the new transmission gasket and the pan to hold the gasket in place. Make sure no Vaseline gets inside the pan.

Align the pan with the gasket on top to the (jig) set screws. I did not use any thread locks. Install the pan screws (new screws were used). Snug up the screws after ensuring the gasket is in place.

ZF Manual (Version 99/04/15, page 3.8/4) states “Place a new lightly oiled paper gasket 03.020 on the sealing surface of the transmission housing. Working diagonally, fasten the oil pan with 22 screws 03.0444.”

5 HP-19 Repair Manual is available from:

Oiling the gasket will not provide a visual indication the seal was installed correctly after the installation. If the gasket was installed dry, and upon investigation later the gasket (edge) is wet, it is an early indication there is a leak.

What torque value to use installing the 22 transmission pan screws?

Bentley Manual’s torque is 6Nm (53 in-lbs) and it specified applying Loctite on the threads before installation. The type of Loctite was not specified. Loctite Threadlocker Blue 242 is designed for locking threaded fasteners which require normal disassembly with standard tools. The “K” factor for this coating is not known. One would surmise to use the lowest torque to prevent breaking the hardware.

The top of the screw head has an 8.8 mark stamped on it indicating a minimum tensile strength of 800 N/mm2 (mPa) or 116,030 psi. M6-1 screw must be able to carry a minimum tensile load of 3,619 pound force.

BMW company standard N 600 02.0 and ZF Manual (Version 99/04/15, page 1.5/2 Item 18) specifies a torque of 10Nm (88.5 in-lbs) for M6 8.8 screws installed dry.
(see enclosed pdf file)

From the analysis shown, it looks like “ZF” torques the screws to a preload just beyond yield.
I used new screws to be conservative.

The Bossard website is a useful tool to help understand the torque-preload relationships.
Select “Torque and Preload Calculator”
K=.08 (Thread & Under the Head); Torque = 7.79Nm; Preload = 10.70kN

00 00 Extract from company standard BMW N 600 02.0

The maximum tightening torques are:

Only applicable to shaft screws with metric standard and fine threads according to DIN 13, sheet 13 and nuts with height of 0,8 x d according to DIN 934 and only for a µ total = 0.125 (screws phosphatized, screws untreated or galvanized. Lubrication condition: unlubricated and also oiled).

For cadmium-plated screws or nuts (µ total = 0.08 to 0.09) the tightening torque with screw material at the same level of utilization ca. must be 30% less than shown in the table.

The values specified in this table apply to all screw connections conforming to the aforementioned conditions.

Not applicable when using a different surface or lubricant condition on the thread, or if the height of the nut differs.

Not applicable to necked-down bolts, self-tapping screw connections or to connections between parts made of different materials.

Maintaining specified tightening torques is vital for performing repair work to a professional standard. This presupposes that the torque wrenches required for this are subjected to a regular inspection. Approved torque testing equipment is listed in the catalogue of workshop equipment planning documents.

00 - General Instructions Type Screw Measure Unit
00 00 M6 and M7 - maximum tightening torques according to BMW N 600 02.0
Applicable range for tightening torques, refer to extract from company standard BMW N 600 02.0

Size Screw Measure Unit
M6 thread M6 8.8 9.9 Nm

Torque-Preload Discussion:
The preload applied is dependent on the torque; the torque value was based on tests to ensure the gasket will seal and the screw does not back-off under vibration. The thread friction and friction under-the-head are the factors contributing to the torque required to attain the desired screw tension. If any oil, thread lock, contaminants, etc. are present in any of the fastener interfaces, the torque tension relationships will change.

The screw plating prevents the screw thread from galling and to control the torque-preload relationship. The captive washer is used to control the friction under the head and spread the load.

“K” factor or Nut Factor or Friction Coefficient or Torque Coefficient in the formula T=KDF:
See the Bossard Technical Information section of the catalog, page T.041.

Bolt Science

If you do not have the correct torque driver which can measure the torque accurately, use 6Nm (53 in-lbs) with Loctite.

I do not use thread lock on items I intend to disassemble again. The amount of thread lock applied cannot be controlled causing the installation torque-preload to be inconsistent. The thread lock hardens with time and sometimes the screw thread strips the threads off the hole at removal.

In situations where thread lock is required by the OEM, the thread patch lock is pre-applied on the screw threads.
See QPD 18240 for suppliers:
Type P, Color of patch = Supplier & Plant Location
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 5 HP-19 ATF Pan Screw Torque.pdf (27.5 KB, 647 views)
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Old 02-19-2014, 12:50 PM   #3
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How to verify the torque wrench accuracy, calibration


Last edited by jotscan; 02-19-2014 at 01:25 PM. Reason: Added information
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Old 05-08-2014, 10:07 PM   #4
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wow I can't believe it was do hard to find this! Excellent DIY and tons of great info!

Thank you so much!!
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Old 10-09-2015, 11:44 AM   #5
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So I just did this and only got 5 quarts out, and was only able to put about 5 quarts back in. Is something wrong? I followed the procedures in multiple DIYs exactly. It was at the right temperature.
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Old 10-09-2015, 03:32 PM   #6
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You will never get all the oil out if you just drop the pan as about 4 litres will stay in the torque converter and clutch packs, with the most being held by the TC. You will get about another 2 litres out if you drop the valve body, as it allows the clutches and TC to half drain.

5 litres is right on the money, and if 5 litres went back in, that's all good.
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Old 10-16-2015, 02:46 PM   #7
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For people that want to flush out more fluid than just what the pan holds, here is a link to a thread explaining how to do so by disconnecting one of the transmission cooling lines...
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