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XBimmers | BMW X3 Forum BMW X3 and X4 Forums | F25 (2011 - 2017) | F26 (2014 - Current) Second Generation BMW X3 (F25) General Forum ATF Fluid change, differential oil change, and AWD Transfer case fluid change

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      03-28-2017, 03:46 PM   #23
dcaron9999
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Found this bulletin from ZF, which I thought would help in this thread:
http://www.zf.com/global/media/en_zf...s/TE-ML_11.pdf

...of particular interest, is the maintenance interval recommendation, even with the poor english translation, as an added bonus ;-)

5-, 6-, 8- and 9-speed as well as 4HP20 automatic transmissions:
ZF 5-, 6-, 8- and 9-speed as well as the ZF 4HP20 automatic transmissions are filled maintenance-free with specially developed partially synthetic ATF oils. Maintenance-free fills are intended for normal operating conditions. Especially driving at very high operating temperatures can result in accelerated aging or increased wear of ATF oils. It is recommended, in the event of severe operating conditions, such as:
- frequent highway driving in top speed range,
- offensive, sporty driving style,
- frequent trailer operation,

being above average, oil purification (oil change) on automatic transmissions is recommended between 80,000 km and 120,000 km, or 8 years, depending on the load. In each case, only released ATF oil may be used for oil changes. And oil changes must be performed in accordance with the relevant specifications. The exception is the ZF 5HP18


Then in the same document, there is a list of equivalent ATF's:
According to spare part number of vehicle manufacturer:
ZF-LIFEGUARDFLUID 8 (ZF No. S671 090 312)
=> Audi / VW Oil No. G 060162 A1 / A2 / A6 ATF
=> BMW ATF 3+, Oil No. 83 22 2 289 720
=> Jaguar Oil No. 02JDE 26444
=> Land Rover Oil No. LR023288
=> Chrysler Oil No. 68157995AA
=> Petronas Tutela Transmission AS8
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      03-29-2017, 07:18 AM   #24
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Called VW and Chrysler dealerships, and they are charging ridiculous sums ($78CAD /Liter and $47CAD/Liter respectively).

Finally settled on Liqui Moly Top Tec 1800, at a local autoparts shop, for a fair price, @ $23CAD/L.

https://products.liqui-moly.com/top-tec-atf-1800-2.html

"Developed for ZF 6HP19/26/32 and ZF 8HP 45/55/70/90 type automatic transmissions that are installed in various Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Porsche, etc. vehicles. Meets further specifications, allowing it to cover an even wider range of vehicles. Usage according to the prescribed specifications from the unit or vehicle manufacturer."
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Last edited by dcaron9999; 03-29-2017 at 07:24 AM..
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      03-29-2017, 11:03 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcaron9999 View Post
Called VW and Chrysler dealerships, and they are charging ridiculous sums ($78CAD /Liter and $47CAD/Liter respectively).

Finally settled on Liqui Moly Top Tec 1800, at a local autoparts shop, for a fair price, @ $23CAD/L.

https://products.liqui-moly.com/top-tec-atf-1800-2.html

"Developed for ZF 6HP19/26/32 and ZF 8HP 45/55/70/90 type automatic transmissions that are installed in various Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Porsche, etc. vehicles. Meets further specifications, allowing it to cover an even wider range of vehicles. Usage according to the prescribed specifications from the unit or vehicle manufacturer."
Sounds like you are all set! Let us know how it goes.

As a side note, can you imagine how stunned a typical Jeep or Chrysler owner must be when they show up for an ATF fluid flush and the dealer quotes them something like $1500 - $2000 CAD for the job?! Oh man, that must take some explaining! ($78/liter for ATF is just freakin' highway robbery. That's what pushed me to try a local indy that has a very good reputation. Happy I did and it saved me a bundle!)
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      04-03-2017, 06:09 AM   #26
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Please let us know how it went dcaron.
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      04-03-2017, 11:24 AM   #27
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My reading is:ZF does not envisage a need for change of fluid - nor "flush", but is open for "special needs" like racing or towing - all to support dealers and get away with a - possible - break down liability case - all in good US-tradition.

My advise is: don't touch the delicate AUTO! We have "Worlds best AUTO" in the ZF 8HP, why take chances?
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      04-03-2017, 12:47 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tjalle View Post
My reading is:ZF does not envisage a need for change of fluid - nor "flush", but is open for "special needs" like racing or towing - all to support dealers and get away with a - possible - break down liability case - all in good US-tradition.

My advise is: don't touch the delicate AUTO! We have "Worlds best AUTO" in the ZF 8HP, why take chances?
Exactly why I am changing the fluid. Machines never break down due to running in clean lubricant.
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      04-03-2017, 01:09 PM   #29
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Granted manual is less sensitive than AUTO, but my 9000 gearbox has 280000 km on the clock - no problem - no change of fluid - no flush.

But again - everybody to his fancy. You'll allowed to change/ flush to your liking - but count me out
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      04-04-2017, 03:45 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmxIII View Post
Please let us know how it went dcaron.
Decided to go with the full synthetic Liqui Moly Top Tec 1800 ATF, recommended for our ZF 8HP 45 tranny. I chose not to change the pan and filter for this first phase (partial ATF replacement).

I first drained and measured the original ATF liquid from the pan. About 4.5 liters came out, and viscosity seemed thin/watery with a greenish black tint to it. It did not smell as nasty as typical Mercon or Dexron ATF's I have replaced in the past on my other vehicles, so chemical composition is definitely different with the ZF-approved ATF's.

The drain bolt is plastic and has a weird ratchery fealing in the first couple of threads as you loosen it, or you finish tightening it up, then it locks. Even though it's not designed to be re-useable, such as the the pan, I was very careful not to strip it, or damage its embedded o-ring.

To save time and anxiety, I did not want to deal with a running car over my head, and temperature readings which you are supposed to do, and I followed for my other cars in the past.

So to ensure I inject the same volume of ATF (4.5 liters) back into the pan, I ended up going ghetto style - I tilted the vehicle on its side, to have the fill hole higher off the ground than the rest of the pan, which allowed me to force-feed exactly 4.5 liters of fresh ATF back into the pan.

Been about a week, and so far so good. Did not notice an immediate and striking difference in driveability. My X3 35i had 108,000Kms when I bought it. Ive read several recommendations for our tranny is an ATF + pan/filter replacement at every 100,000Kms. Rather be on the safe side, and call me anal, but I drop and fill all liquids on any pre-owned cars I buy, and I intend to keep for a while, or even resell more easily. I keep all bills for my maintenance records.

Will probably proceed to phase 2 (pan/filter + ATF fluid replacement) in the next 1000-5000 Kms, to try to get to most of the old-new blended ATF fluid circulating into the system (piping, radiator ,etc).
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Last edited by dcaron9999; 04-04-2017 at 05:18 PM..
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      04-04-2017, 10:34 AM   #31
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that's what I do. start draining and refilling the pan at 50k. every 2 or 3 oil change I do it. I measure what comes out and put the same amount in because ZF's fill procedure is a PITA.

we are now on our third BMW with ZF auto. wife's cars. x5 4.4 went 170k and x5 4.8 went 120k without issues.

mine were all manual transmissioned but now I have a DCT so we will see.
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      04-04-2017, 01:02 PM   #32
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This is very interesting - we have North America, with many years of automatic gearboxes and "rest of the world", with, primarily, manual. Early automatics had even more sensitive valves and internal brakes.

It has developed a culture of flushing and changing oil, primarily - probably - due to delicate valves in auto gearboxes in NA- not so in Europe and rest of the world?

Of course ZF and Aisin are playing along and recommend - if not flushing - but changing oil after long time.

I worked for a car manufacturer, who used Aisin automatics - "none" of our customers - nor our testvehicles, ever had an oilchange.
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      09-08-2017, 08:09 AM   #33
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Saw in a post above that the ZF 8 spd takes 4.5 litres - is there a reference manual/source for this? Negotiating fees with BMW Dealer & Indy's and hate to say "I saw it on a forum".

Thanks!
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      12-23-2017, 08:16 AM   #34
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Anyone in NoVA had this done at a BMW dealership or local Indy? I've done all the maintenance on my cars over the years (everything minus alignments and tire mounting since I don't have the equipment) either by myself or with the help of a buddy, but I just have absolutely no desire to do anything under the car anymore and would rather pay to have it done. I don't know what the going rate would be or a good place to go specifically for X3's since I've never used a BMW/Indy shop before, but if it's crazy, I'll just suck it up and do it myself.
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      12-23-2017, 08:58 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcaron9999 View Post

So to ensure I inject the same volume of ATF (4.5 liters) back into the pan, I ended up going ghetto style - I tilted the vehicle on its side, to have the fill hole higher off the ground than the rest of the pan, which allowed me to force-feed exactly 4.5 liters of fresh ATF back into the pan.
Funny, i will be doing the "ghetto style" refill also.
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      12-27-2017, 10:41 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BIG_KID View Post
Funny, i will be doing the "ghetto style" refill also.
+1.

How did you get the car to tilt like that on one side?

I think the reason is due to a thermostatic bypass...


Last edited by Polo08816; 12-27-2017 at 10:59 AM..
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      12-27-2017, 08:07 PM   #37
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I made some ramps out of 2x10 boards stacked on top of each other. put them on left side and drive up on them.
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      12-28-2017, 06:01 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Polo08816 View Post
I think the reason is due to a thermostatic bypass...
It's because ATF expands as it's heated. A proper fill would probably pour out the better part of a quart at normal operating temperatures with the fill plug open.
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      12-31-2017, 03:37 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hardparker View Post
It's because ATF expands as it's heated. A proper fill would probably pour out the better part of a quart at normal operating temperatures with the fill plug open.
If you're not time limited as in you can wait for the car to cool down overnight, there's no reason why someone should not be able to fill the transmission to the correct level.
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      01-04-2018, 10:07 PM   #40
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2011 X3 35i, bought new.
At 104K miles indie shop replaced six sparkplugs (Bosch ZR-5-TPP-33) and fluids in transmission, transfer case and front & rear differentials. Sparkplugs had first been replaced by dealer at time of camshaft VANOS warranty work at about 50K miles. Powertrain fluids had never been changed.
Labor $860.
Parts $650.
"Green Shop" fee $36.
Taxes $ 116.
Total $1660.
Wife says it drives like new, lotsa zoom-zoom when she punches it.
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      01-14-2018, 07:27 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcaron9999 View Post
Decided to go with the full synthetic Liqui Moly Top Tec 1800 ATF, recommended for our ZF 8HP 45 tranny. I chose not to change the pan and filter for this first phase (partial ATF replacement).

I first drained and measured the original ATF liquid from the pan. About 4.5 liters came out, and viscosity seemed thin/watery with a greenish black tint to it. It did not smell as nasty as typical Mercon or Dexron ATF's I have replaced in the past on my other vehicles, so chemical composition is definitely different with the ZF-approved ATF's.

The drain bolt is plastic and has a weird ratchery fealing in the first couple of threads as you loosen it, or you finish tightening it up, then it locks. Even though it's not designed to be re-useable, such as the the pan, I was very careful not to strip it, or damage its embedded o-ring.

To save time and anxiety, I did not want to deal with a running car over my head, and temperature readings which you are supposed to do, and I followed for my other cars in the past.

So to ensure I inject the same volume of ATF (4.5 liters) back into the pan, I ended up going ghetto style - I tilted the vehicle on its side, to have the fill hole higher off the ground than the rest of the pan, which allowed me to force-feed exactly 4.5 liters of fresh ATF back into the pan.

Been about a week, and so far so good. Did not notice an immediate and striking difference in driveability. My X3 35i had 108,000Kms when I bought it. Ive read several recommendations for our tranny is an ATF + pan/filter replacement at every 100,000Kms. Rather be on the safe side, and call me anal, but I drop and fill all liquids on any pre-owned cars I buy, and I intend to keep for a while, or even resell more easily. I keep all bills for my maintenance records.

Will probably proceed to phase 2 (pan/filter + ATF fluid replacement) in the next 1000-5000 Kms, to try to get to most of the old-new blended ATF fluid circulating into the system (piping, radiator ,etc).
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIG_KID View Post
Funny, i will be doing the "ghetto style" refill also.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BIG_KID View Post
I made some ramps out of 2x10 boards stacked on top of each other. put them on left side and drive up on them.
On second thought, the fill hole is towards the back of the transmission and vehicle. It would seem that if you reversed the car onto ramps - raising the rear of the car - you would be able to achieve the same result instead of tilting the car on one side?
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      01-16-2018, 07:52 AM   #42
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we have a 2008 X3 3.0i bought used at 91k and now have 121k on it. Been wanting to change the trans filter and fill for a while and havent had time.

Local indy shop says its not a simple as just drop the pan and change the filter and fill. Seems all will come out. (9.5 qts) about $470 to change out. $120 for filter kit, $150 for 9.5 qts synth fluid and $200 labor. would prob do the transfer case too as I dont think any of the driveline fluids have been changed.

Ive read that it was a GM trans and (i assuemed) like all my other GM trans I just drop the pan, change filter and add few quarts till its full but now I see that there are 2 possible transmissions One ZF GS6X37BZ and One GM GA6L45R how do I tell which one I have and do they each require diff procedure?
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      01-16-2018, 12:28 PM   #43
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@why2kmax

You have posted on the incorrect forum. Your 2008 X3 is a first generation model. Below is the link to the correct forum....

http://x3.xbimmers.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=91
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      01-16-2018, 03:21 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter_R View Post
@why2kmax

You have posted on the incorrect forum. Your 2008 X3 is a first generation model. Below is the link to the correct forum....

http://x3.xbimmers.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=91
Ugh, sorry about that. I didnt realize it. Please delete my previous post
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