How hard is it to replace a clutch in a 5-speed manual transmission?
I have never done it, but it's generally cheaper to buy the tools and do it
yourself than to pay someone else. Plus you generally get better parts.
I've never done a clutch.
This is a Toyota 4Runner 1998 2WD with the W59 5-speed.
Anyone have any idea what I'll need besides a transmission lift?
Have you done a clutch?
How hard is it?
If you ask what work I've done, I've done cooling system overhauls, and
alternator replacements and the like when needed.
Youtube is pretty Spartan when it comes to things that most people don't
do. You'll NEVER find a DIY for your own vehicle, for example. Even if it's
as common as a Toyota 4Runner.
Search term: "diy clutch replacement w59 transmission" at Youtube:
On Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 8:57:25 PM UTC-4, Chaya Eve wrote:
Like Dean, I regularly find lots of repair videos on Youtube for my BMW X5
covering all kinds of repair jobs, from CV Axles to taking the
door panels off. They have sure helped me enormously. Plenty of
them there for other models too. Have you tried looking for
Toyota forums? The BMW forums have threads were people have done
particular repairs and sometimes they even include pics documenting
the whole process. If you're planning on doing your own work and
keeping the vehicle, a Bentley manual or similar is a wise investment
You have a Bimmer, where the people (e.g., on bimmerfest.com/forums) aren't
usually dumb idiotic kids but the 4Runner forum is filled with high school
In fact, the 4Runner forums are filled to the brim with children who can't
keep on topic to save their lives. It's disgusting how childish they are.
The minute you ask them to measure something they go off the charts, saying
that you should go to the dealer.
It's the only forum that ever advises always going to the dealer for
example, since they can't comprehend the concept of sourcing better parts
of better materials after measuring sizes.
I don't think any of the kids on the 4Runner forum even own a mic!
The Tundra forum, for some reason, contains adults though.
On Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 10:55:29 PM UTC-4, Chaya Eve wrote:
I know what you're talking about, but believe me, there is plenty
of stupidity and blind allegiance on the BMW forums too. I saw
a recent thread where someone was trying to figure out the diameters
of the various vacuum hoses so that they can be obtained locally
at a parts store or sourced online. He quickly got responses like
if you can't afford a vacuum hose, you shouldn't be driving a BMW.
They didn't much like me over there, because when there is some
obvious problems that shouldn't exist in a BMW, I point it out.
Like having window regulators that are crap. I've had three of
them fail, one went while the car was sitting in the driveway,
sending the glass crashing down, breaking into pieces. And others
have had similar experiences with those, yet the BMW diehards
salute the BMW flag and make excuses. "It's a performance car"!
There probably are more people there though that even if they
are dummies, they take a lot of interest in screwing around
with their toy, so they make more videos, posts, etc.
Another example of a dummy, on that forum some guy posted pics
of how to change an alternator. Now mind you, the alternator
on the X5 is like most today, it's fairly well buried, lots of
stuff near it, DC cable connected down under, where you can't
see it, etc. So, he tells people he didn't bother to first
disconnect the battery. He had a pic of the live cable disconnected
from the alternator and hanging by a string from the hood.
I couldn't imagine taking a socket wrench down under there
metal all around, to take the nut off, with it live.
I pointed out how dangerous and dumb that is and immediately
got arguments like, "but even if it does hit something, it will
just spark a bit....." I'll do some repairs, like maybe changing
an electrical component with a simple connector, without disconnecting
the battery as the manual tells you. But the alternator cable?
Yes, I think that's a lot of the problem. Most of them are 20 and
think they know it all. They are probably a lot more likely to be
posting than 50 year olds.
You are correct but it goes deeper than that for those of us who have been
on the Usenet and on car forums for as long as both have existed (Usenet
being longer of course).
There are mainly two BMW forums, where I think bimmerfest is the better
one, but that's up to the beholder to determine.
Heh heh ... that was me (if you're talking E39 and not X5).
I already created a spreadsheet on that E39 forum of what I could figure
out on my own for the various hose sizes. I was asking for further help,
but nobody knows it (I'm AW on that forum).
What I find strange is...
Nobody has ever measured the ID/OD/Length of the vacuum hoses in the E39?
On the Toyota forums, I found that same problem for the crush washers.
Nobody on the forum thought to measure the crush washer OD/ID/Thickness?
Can you believe that?
I must be odd - because I'm all for second sourcing, especially when you
can often get better material (e.g., silicone, copper, whatever) at lower
But you need the sizes.
For each bimmer model, there are about a score of common problems.
For the E39, offhand, they're
. seat twist
. abs trifecta
. fsu/fsr fries
. vapor barrier leaks
. disa valve pin disintegration
. cooling system leaks (mostly the behr expansion tank)
. trunk loom fraying
. headlight adjuster breaking (after 2001)
. power steering bracket cracking (V8 only)
. power steering hose leaking (I6 only)
. CCV and dipstick tube clogging
. VANOS o-rings disintegrating
. rear tire negative camber inner wear (by design)
. jack pads falling off (before the re-design)
. dorman front window regulator plastic rollers
. dorman rear window regulator lead crimp
. windshield wiper pumps leaking
. mechanical tensioners noisy (early models)
. cluster pixels fail one by one (replaced under extra warranty)
. mid pixels fail one by one (not covered after warranty expired)
How's my list of *common* problems that almost every E39 (and E46 and E38)
is affected by?
I know the window regulators better than anyone and I've been on the BMW
forums for something like 20 years (or so) so I know exactly what you're
There are always two types of people.
There is the type who bought the car for the image.
And there is the type who bought the car because they thought it was good.
It's actually good - once you (repeatedly) fix the 20 things that go wrong
on almost all of them. Some (like the DISA) you can use Gary's solution to
redesign them, while others (like the CVV) you can use BMW's redesign, but
others (like the cooling system if you don't go Zionsville) you just have
to constantly replace.
You do learn EXACTLY why they fail though, and they often fail for the most
ridiculous of reasons.
For example, the door window regulator you're talking about is Dorman where
the Uro has (only recently) redesigned the rollers so that the wire won't
fall off. That only works for the front. On the rear, the lead crimp falls
off the wires. On both, the motor can fail but usually doesn't. Also the
trolly bolts loosen up rather often, but mostly because people who replace
the regulators don't locktite them. And lots of people who replace the
regulators in the front forget to disconnect the battery before
disconnecting the yellow airbag so they complain incessantly about the
airbag light after a door regulator repair.
In the case of seat twist, it's the cable ends that get soft.
In the case of the Bosch ABS trifecta, it's a wire that falls off its pin.
In the case of the sitronic FSU, it's a MOSFET trace that cracks.
In the case of the trunk loom, it's the wires that crack in the same spot.
In the case of the Hella headlight adjusters, it's the brittle plastic.
In the case of the DISA it's a plastic pin (which Gary replaced with metal)
In the case of the VANOS (long story) it's said by Raj to be the buna
In the case of the wiper pumps it's said to be the o-ring design
In the case of the rear tires, just change 2 degrees to 0 degrees
In the case of the behr cooling system - a key is never overfill it ever!
In the case of the vapor barriers - bmw didn't apply enough adhesive
In the case of the jack pads - the new design has an expansion pin
In the case of the power steering bracket - always check the bolts!
In the case of the power steering leak - cut off & re-use the hose
In the case of the CCV - you can replace with a cold-weather design
In the case of the cluster & MID pixels - they used lousy pink tape
The oddest thing is that each of the common problems happens for many years
over a few models so BMW doesn't care.
All have stupid reasons for existing (see above).
Notice though that nothing above is related directly to handling and power
(although rear camber is but that's not a flaw but it's designed in).
The point is that BMW *only* knows how to design a drive train.
Almost nothing else is BMW good at designing.
The proof is in the list above - which if you own the E39 or E38 or E46 of
about the same years, you'll know to be all fact.
On Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 3:38:04 PM UTC-4, Chaya Eve wrote:
Could have been E39. I sometimes flip among the various models
that share the same M54 engine. So, probably was you...
Crush washers I can believe, because even if you buy one from the
dealer, they are what? 50 cents? And they are available from
foreign car part suppliers online for very reasonable prices.
Or Ebay. Those vacuum hoses though, if you paid $10 for this one,
$10 for that one, it adds up quickly. And even the alternate
online sources, if you do it by BMW part number, they still
aren't cheap. I just got 7ft of silicone hose for $5 on Ebay
Somebody at BMW should be fired for the CCV, which for the peanut
gallery is their PCV type system. Instead of a simple PCV, they
have an oil separator that takes the crankcase vapors outside
the engine, to an oil separator, that pulls the oil out and returns
the fumes to the intake to be burned. The problem is the CCV
contraption fails, the pipes get clogged with mayonaise like stuff,
because the oil and water cools and turns into sludge. And some
of the failures are interesting. Have you seen the video of the
engine oil logged? The CCV failed, the intake sucked crankcase
oil into the cylinders, oil logging it so it locks up. That's
only possible because the BMW geniuses put the return line as part
of the dipstick tube and it winds up below the oil level in the
And yet if you bring up that this is a stupid design, you get told
no, BMW has a better design, their engine meets more stringent
emissions standards, etc. At the same time you have guys over
there re-engineering it back to a PCV valve design.
Been there done that. LOL. I now have the BMW software for my
PC so I can reset the light.
Can't complain too much about that. Had one fail here.
The puter says that's screwed up again. It's not on my priority list.
It's like an appendix, another example of the German's making it more
complicated. I've driven it with and without the DISA connected and
noticed no difference. Maybe you get some extra torque or HP at some
point on the curve for the spec sheets, but I can't tell any difference.
I did mine last year, because I was doing the valve cover gaskets.
I have to say, they seemed pretty good to me. I think they were
still working and sealing OK. The new ones are just a tad tighter.
From those forums, that's the conclusion I came to. Things like those
window regulators, you would think they would fix after the first few
years of failures.
The good news is that while there are some problems, like the CCV,
DISA, etc, the engines are durable and go 300K miles without blowing
Yeah. Lots of bimmers have the M54.
That's one thing BMW got right.
The engine and the drive train and the steering/suspension.
Plus interior noise is pretty low.
Everything else is essentially not much thought about on a bimmer.
On Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 9:18:47 PM UTC-4, Chaya Eve wrote:
One thing I recently learned is that when you have the AC compressor
switch set to on, it appears that it basically runs it with the AC
full on and uses the heater to then warm the air to the set temp.
I can understand the need to do that to some extent, to remove
humidity. You want to drop the air temp to remove humidity, then
warm it back up. But when it's not humid, it's a waste of energy to run
the AC compressor excessively. You would think when they are desperate
to increase mileage to meet govt reqts that reducing the AC load
would be something that could be easily done. A humidity sensor
for example. Also they target an AC coil temp just a couple deg
above freezing, while other cars appear to maintain a higher temp.
So they are constantly chilling air down to near freezing, only
to heat it back up to get it to 72F.
Interesting. I didn't know that, but on the E39, the BMW mindset seems to
be similar in that it's really a PITA to set things up because they don't
want you to touch it, where you're "supposed" to fine-tune adjust
temperature only by adjusting the "mixture" of hot and cold air.
So it's the same BMW mind set on the E39 as you mentioned for your X5.
In the E39, you set the "desired" passenger/driver temperatures with a
multi-button-push method that you don't want to do every day. And then
you're supposed to leave that passenger/driver temperature setting forever
and not touch it again.
What that means is that you can't set the interior temperature at the time
you start the vehicle. The computer figures it out based on whatever it
bases it upon (probably the delta between ambient and your permanent
Then, almost the way you mentioned above where you "heat the AC" air,
you're "supposed" to control the fine-tuning of the temperature merely by
letting the computer do all the work where all you do is twist the one
cold/hot blue/red knob that adjusts the portion of hot air and cold air
So you don't have the kind of easy twist-knob controls like most cars have.
It's fine if you really don't want to adjust the temperature, but if you
want to adjust the temperature, it's a dozen button presses. Sigh.
I never heard that, but maybe that's the reason.
Yes. But. You probably test smog/mileage with the AC off. :)
I didn't know about that.
BMW engineers are a strange lot.
On Thursday, September 21, 2017 at 1:44:10 PM UTC-4, Chaya Eve wrote:
All cars with AC essentially do that. It's how you get the fog off
the inside of windows when it's cool outside. Even though AC is
not needed the compressor runs, the air gets chilled, removing the
humidity, then warmed back up.
On Wed, 20 Sep 2017 19:37:50 +0000 (UTC), Chaya Eve
Wghat about the bloody aluminum engine mount bolts? Not sure of the
model but in the last 5? years and I believe it was a V8.
The only legitimate reason to buy a Bimmer is for image. Even its
performance is mostly image.
On the E39, the engine mounts are not a major problem. I don't recall a
single thread on it but I'm sure they exist. That includes both the V8 and
The only engine "mount" that is really bad is the V8 power steering pump
has two bolts, one of which loosens up for some reason, and then when it
falls out, it stays out forever (unless someone notices it). Over time, it
causes the bracket to crack, and it's an expensive cast aluminum bracket,
so lots of people have tried "welding" it to some degree of success.
The lesson is to always check that lower bolt once a year if you have the
V8. The I6 doesn't have that problem because it's a different setup where
the V8 at least has a way to drain the PS fluid whereas the I6 has no
I understand that perspective. I didn't buy it for that reason, but I
understand the perspective. I bought it because I thought it was a good
car. And it is a good car in very many ways. It's also a POS in very many
The handling is very good, especially at speed.
The power is pretty good for the size engine (high compression ratio).
The suspension is pretty good.
That's about it for what's good - but you have to admit that's the hard
The easy stuff, like making an A/C system that doesn't take a dozen button
presses or sealing the rear door vapor barriers with enough adhesive so
they don't leak water or designing the window regulator plastic rollers out
of better plastic (etcetera), they suck at.
All BMW engineers seem to care about is designing the drive train.
The good news is that the engine will last forever as long as you don't
overheat it due to the crappy cooling system. :)
On Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:44:03 +0000 (UTC), Chaya Eve
A friend's wifes BMW snapped an aluminum bolt on a motor mount,
causing the engine to shift out of position. Being a retired machinist
he took it apart and was able to remove the threaded portion of the
bolt from the block? and replaced it with a steel bolt. This was the
mount that fastens the engine to the chassis - and I believe it was
the bolt that fastened the mount to the engine block.
I'll try to remember to ask Ted next Wednesday at lunch.
For the price of a Bimmer, it should all be better than just "pretty
good" My old Mercury Mystique was "pretty good" on all those counts
too. Went like a cat on a hot tin roof - and cornered like it was on
rails. That little n2.5 V6 (Porsche design with Cosworth heads.) was a
pretty willing engine - and just as capable.
Must have had the same engineers that designed the German Fords.
The stylists look after the rest - under the constraints of the bean
The same could honestly also be said of a Chevy Vega - - -
I'm on the Yaris forum and get a little slop over from the Tundras. The
Yaris crew is pretty good although they lean toward coil-overs and CAI
like frustrated ricer racers. Of course the car is used for club racing
in Japan so the goodies exist.
I am not yet on Yaris so I should try them.
Mostly I just want DIYs.
If I could find a DIY for the clutch, that would tell me almost everything.
I did watch a few youtube DIYs and it looks like the general procedure is
something like the following - but the real problem with watching a DIY for
the wrong vehicle is that sometimes little things matter a lot.
For example, if you have to support the engine but you don't think that you
do, or if you have to have a certain sized tool but you don't have it, then
you're stuck at the worst time and place.
Anyway, the "general" procedure seems to be this:
. While it's on the ground, remove the cabin gear shift mechanism
. If possible, unbolt the "conning tower" for the shift mechanism
. Then jackstand the car as high as you can get it (I have 6 ton stands).
. Remove the drive shaft
. Remove the slave cylinder
. Remove the speedometer cable
. Remove any speed sensors
. Remove anything else in the way
. Then support the transmission with a transmission jack
. Then unbolt the front bell housing
I think that's it.
Did I miss a major step?
One question I have is "will the fluid leak out"?
I think not - but I know that the gearshift lever is open to the fluid.
So if you tip it over, the fluid will certainly come out.
The second question is whether a transmission lift is really needed when
you're in a jackstand situation (so you don't need ten feet of lift).
Can't a floor jack hold the transmission?
I watched one video where a guy wrestled the transmission out by hand.
Must I have a transmission jack?
If I need it I'll get it - but it will only be used once so I'd rather not.
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