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I currently own a 2005 estoril blue e46 m3 with 76k miles and am having smg issues. I purchased the car last summer, and within 2 weeks of owning it the smg cog came on and the car shifted into neutral while driving the car pretty hard on a hot day. Drove the car home, shut off the ignition and didn't have the light come on for the rest of the summer. After taking the car out of storage this spring, the yellow cog comes on every time I drive it, and it has already shifted into neutral once.

I took the car to a highly reputable shop nearby and had the codes read/smg looked at. They wanted to charge $6k for parts + labor. After going back and forth, they said they could additionally repair just the smg motor for $2500. I purchased a K+DCAN cable and set up INPA. I am receiving codes 53 and 56 (the shop saw the same codes). I checked the preload pressure of the accumulator and the value was 36 (within the normal range).

Due to the motor being the most common failure and the fact that I get a cog during hot temperatures, I am convinced that replacing the motor (and temp sensor if possible) will fix my problem. Burkhart Engineering sells the motor replacement kit that contains the motor, grease, temp sensor, and high performance fluid.

If I replace the motor myself, I would do it from under the car. With this procedure you replace the motor (plug and play) and there is no bleeding of the system needed. If I want to replace the motor/temp sensor and bleed the system, I will have to take it to a shop as I would surely not be able to do this job.

I've called two shops in the area who specialize in bmw repair and neither were comfortable removing the smg unit, replacing the motor/temp sensor and putting it back in the car (This is not a standard bmw procedure so it makes sense).

Does anyone know of any shops in Michigan that have experience replacing smg motors (versus the whole unit)? If not does anyone have opinion on replacing just the motor, instead of motor + temp sensor + bleed. I'd really like to not shell out $6000 on this if I the motor replacement could potentially fix my issue.
 

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Its easier to just remove the whole pump and replace the motor than doing it on the car. If you have the K+DCAN cable you can bleed the system using INPA software.

Don't try to avoid bleeding the system. You actually want to get new fluid into the system if you can
 
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