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Should I change my "lifetime" tranny fluid?

My car recently turned 60k miles and the Inspection II lamp will come on in the next 25 miles. So I've gathered all the parts I need for this stuff and am leaning toward tackling the "lifetime" tranny fluid. My car is automatic. Since it's a CPO, the warranty is good for until Aug. '08, so I am a little hesitant to mess with the tranny. But then I lose sleep at night thinking about the grime and goop in the 60k mile tranny. I am a maint. fanatic. I've read over the DIY article on Bimmerfest a few times and he seems to have suffered no problems for having used the aftermarket ATF oil that's so much cheaper than the OEM Esso stuff at $28 per litre. Anyway, what do you guys think? Should I wait until the day after my car is out of warranty to do this or should I do it as part of my Inspection II? I might put another 10k miles on her before the CPO warranty expires and I might want to buy another extended warranty then. Obviously, no tranny can go on indefinitely with the same fluid and I think it might be made worse the longer I wait. But then changing it might void my warranty if I have problems later on. What do you think?
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:28 AM
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I put Amsoil in mine. I would change it now. If it fails and BMW claims it is the fluid then Amsoil will cover it under their warranty. It may be a battle though.

Keep your receipts.
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Old 04-06-2007, 04:45 PM
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DO NOT CHANGE IT. IT WILL ONLY GIVE YOU PROBLEMS. AND IF IT DOES GO BAD UNDER WARANTY AND YOU TAKE IT TO THE DEALER THEY WILL BE ABLE TO TELL AND THEY WILL REJECT THE WARRANTY.
THERE IS NO NEED TO CHANGE THE FLUID
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Old 04-07-2007, 06:57 AM
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Ok, that's the consensus I'm hearing on Bimmerfest too. But how did the guy who did the tech article with different fluid not have any problems? He listed several identical fluids that were considerably cheaper and the one he used was fine. I guess I'll just hold onto the stuff I have and do it as soon as the warranty runs out.
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Old 04-07-2007, 08:41 AM
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If you are going to change it anyway then why not now? At least you have a chance of it being covered under CPO. The only thing BMW can claim is that it was the fluid then it becomes a fight between Amsoil and BMW CPO. This is all assuming something bad happens.

As far as mileage, the sooner you change it the better. Our local BMWCCA sponsor mechanic says change it before 80k or never change it because the chance of loosening sludge is too great. His recommendation is 60k, IIRC.
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Old 04-07-2007, 11:57 AM
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How would it becomea fight between BMW and Amsoil? BMW says to never change the fluid, so that might kill the warranty right there. And their TSB says, if you have to top off, only use the Esso stuff and nothing else. And it says that anything else will cause tranny failure that will not be covered by warranty. If several other ATF oils are just fine, even used by VW, which I think have some of the same transmissions (made by GM), then there's something fishy going on with this claim of imminent tranny damage and must be Esso, etc.
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Old 04-07-2007, 01:54 PM
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My comment is assuming you will be using Amsoil. Amsoil has a white paper stating that their ATF is a direct replacement for this ESSO part number. So, Amsoil will warranty the tranny if their fluid causes the failure. If the tranny fails under the CPO then BMW can only deny by claiming the fluid caused the failure, so that makes it either the CPO covers it or Amsoil does.

Tell BMW it was leaking so it had to be replaced.
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Old 04-08-2007, 06:19 PM
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Heres a quote of myself from another thread in the E36 forum:

"Read these all the way through:
2000 328i GM Automatic Transmission fluid type / Thank you
E46 ATF fluid and change...

In one of those, I gave a link to a Bentley Publishing PDF that should answer your every question. "
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Old 04-09-2007, 07:54 AM
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Thanks. I'm still confused though. I have no doubt I can handle the job. I'm just wondering about these warnings that mixing fluids will cause damage. The guy who did it on Bimmerfest - http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=166135 - listed several compatible ATF oils. He didn't use the Esso stuff and said everything was fine, if not better, afterwards.
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Old 04-09-2007, 08:17 AM
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I wouldn't worry about mixing compatible fluids. Mine has Amsoil plus the undrained Esso.

Thats a good write up. I've considered doing mine again in a few months with the "pull the cooler return method" so I can get it all flushed thoroughly.
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Old 04-09-2007, 11:02 AM
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i see all to often people who change thier fluid and then they see problems a short time after and they guess what NOT COVERED. but you do what you like
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Old 04-10-2007, 05:10 PM
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