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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This is a follow up to my previous thread "Moaning at Freeway Speed". Asking for a little advice from my fellow fanatics.

Been trying to chase down the rumble strip sound coming out of my car. I've always said that I thought it was in the rear end, and it only happens at 68 miles per hour and up. I replaced the CSB, Flex Disk, Transmission Mounts, and Diff fluids, and the sound is still there. I can control the sound with the gas pedal. Basically, I don't here much until about 68 mph, but once I hit 68, if I gas the car, I hear the Rumble Strip sound kick in. When I let off the gas, it calms down. Now if I'm accelerating hard down an onramp onto the freeway from say 40 mph, and stay on the gas hard all the way up to 80 mph, I don't get the rumble strip sound. Stated all this in my previous thread, sorry for the redundancy.

Anyway, I took it to a popular Indy here in town, and the first tech looked it over and decided it was the front wheel bearings. I told them I thought they were full of crap, and I'd spent a lot of time evaluating this, no way it was wheel bearings. So, I went out with another one of their techs for drive down the freeway for several miles showing him the problem over and over again. He said he thought it seemed more like a torque converter issue. They then had the owner of the shop check it out (apparently he's super good with these cars, wrenches a lot, builds race cars, etc). He came up with the same conclusion. Torque Converter.

He said he pulled codes 049 and 111, and the problem definitely lies with the torque converter. Price quote I got was $1950 for replacement with parts and labor. He said if I were planning on offloading the car within the next year, that would probably be my best bet. If I'm planning on keeping it a while, I'd be better off getting the "no reverse" fix done, as well as a replacement of the "F Drum" for an additional $800. So now we'd be at $2750.

I thought about picking up a used transmission or even doing the 6 speed swap at this point, but my buddy who used to be a mechanic and helps me with all my diy's says he's not down with doing a trans swap (says he's too old and his body is too worn out lol). What you guys think? My main problem is I'd be pretty freaked out if I dropped $2750 and that ended up not being the problem. Advice needed big time, thanks in advance.
 

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You can get a remanufactured Converter for less than 300 bucks. Sounds like the lock up sprag is bad in yours. When you go full throttle, the sprag does not try to engage. You do have to pull the transmission and you might want to replace the front pump seal and seal ring while you are that far along.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You can get a remanufactured Converter for less than 300 bucks. Sounds like the lock up sprag is bad in yours. When you go full throttle, the sprag does not try to engage. You do have to pull the transmission and you might want to replace the front pump seal and seal ring while you are that far along.
Thanks Man. Unless I can find someone w/ experience and more tools than I, I'm probably not attempting this DIY. Plus, I should probably do that reverse fix too while it's out.....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Just called a reputable tranny shop here in town. Gave him the symptoms, and he concurred w/ the indy. Quoted me $4300. Ouch.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Buy used transmission from BMW recyclers and put it in. Plug and play. Do it in a day.
Thought about it, but would have to find another ZF, and it'd have to be low mileage. These ZF's have lots of problems over 100k i'm hearing. You ever swap one of these? Might need to see if I can find a local fanatic who's done one and bribe em w/ beer. Any takers in Sacramento??? :hi:
 

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I've read about several auto to manual swaps and honestly it's not that difficult. There's just a lot of aspects. If you obtain a ZF, all you have to do is remove the exhaust and driveshaft. Then you just take the tranny out and put in the new one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I've read about several auto to manual swaps and honestly it's not that difficult. There's just a lot of aspects. If you obtain a ZF, all you have to do is remove the exhaust and driveshaft. Then you just take the tranny out and put in the new one.
Have you heard about anybody swapping in a GM for the ZF? The more I research, the more I think the GM is a better product... Thought about the manual swap too, but that might be a little more than I care to take on.
 

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What causes a TC to go bad? Worn parts, low fluid.....

Also without a lift I don't see how you can get the tranny out from under the car. Jack stands or ramps I don't think will get the car high enough so as a DIY for the average DIY'er I don't think it is possible.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
It would require a new harness and some heavy programming if not an entirely new TCU.
Yeah, that's probably why I haven't been able to find a thread for it.... If you gotta go through all that, just do a manual swap right?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What causes a TC to go bad? Worn parts, low fluid.....

Also without a lift I don't see how you can get the tranny out from under the car. Jack stands or ramps I don't think will get the car high enough so as a DIY for the average DIY'er I don't think it is possible.
That's what I was wondering too.... Gonna dig some more.
 

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Yeah, that's probably why I haven't been able to find a thread for it.... If you gotta go through all that, just do a manual swap right?
Well the manual swap has the flywheel and clutch installation. Also you install the new shifter and clutch pedals. An automatic replacement is probably many hour shorter.
 

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A quick question, have you changed the transmission fluid? We have an Audi (with a zf 5hp19 transmission) that showed signs of TC clutch slippage like you are talking about. I did numerous fluid changes to try and get out as much of the old fluid as possible, and it completely removed the problem. 50,000 km later and it hasn't come back, and the transmission drives better than it ever did. Might be worth a try.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have not actually. I was going do it when I thought the problem was in the differential but now that I've ruled that out it has crossed my mind. Trouble is that if that doesn't help I'm out another 200 bucks for nothing.

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Discussion Starter #18
What causes a TC to go bad? Worn parts, low fluid.....

Also without a lift I don't see how you can get the tranny out from under the car. Jack stands or ramps I don't think will get the car high enough so as a DIY for the average DIY'er I don't think it is possible.
More like mileage I believe.


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Discussion Starter #19
Bump

What do y'all think? Should I spend a couple hundred more and do a transmission fluid and filter change, or pay the $2800???
 

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Do a fluid change without dropping the pan, that won't cost you much.
If that won't work - wait a few weeks - find a replacement TC and have it installed. That should be done for about a $1000
Also, visit a few trans shop, ask their opinion to verify it's the TC.
 
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