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Thread: Hydraulic fluid overfill

  1. #1
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    Hydraulic fluid overfill

    I guess it's possible to overfill the top hydraulic fluid in the top motor. I relocated the pump to the trunk and added fluid several times. The top didn't want to close, and the fluid looked low in the reservoir. It worked fine for a day but now I'm seeing hydraulic fluid on the ground in front of the rear tires. I'm thinking when I had to close the top manually, I distorted the hinge seals or I just overfilled it and the fluid blew out the seals. Any ideas. This has been an ordeal.

  2. #2
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    How is your motor sitting ? Set it up right and fluid should be right above the + as see pic below



    Quote Originally Posted by tombrhill View Post
    I guess it's possible to overfill the top hydraulic fluid in the top motor. I relocated the pump to the trunk and added fluid several times. The top didn't want to close, and the fluid looked low in the reservoir. It worked fine for a day but now I'm seeing hydraulic fluid on the ground in front of the rear tires. I'm thinking when I had to close the top manually, I distorted the hinge seals or I just overfilled it and the fluid blew out the seals. Any ideas. This has been an ordeal.

  3. #3
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    Although these electrical pump's can be made to work again, they just do not work as well as they once did. Rust has damaged the electrical contacts within the motor and you'll notice the lack of power during top closing.

    you more than likely simply overfilled the fluid. If you lost your seals, your top wouldn't move.

  4. #4
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    I'm aware of the plus mark of the reservoir. I also saw , because of how the unit sits in the trunk, if you try to put too much in it comes out the filler hole. I topped it off with the top closed because it wouldn't move. It went up and down several times but needed to be helped coming up. I looked at the reservoir and the level had gone down. I went to lower it the following day and it wouldn't open completely. I added more fluid and with no results. Getting out of the car, I noticed fluid on the ground in front of the rear tires. The first few times I tried it there was no fluid.

  5. #5
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    If I recall correctly, you were in top down, motor and emergency by-pass failure, which didn't give you a lot of choices other than cutting a line or manually bring the top up.

    If your seals are going it's age related, rather than pushing the top up. This is sort of why there are venders which re-built them.

    If your hinge lifter seals are seeping they will just get worse as you use the top.

    I'd just use the top until you have total failure. The nice thing is your motor/pump is in the trunk so you can't get jammed up not being able to manually close the top.

    Afterwards, it will be your call if you either want to re-built it or simply use the top manually.

    Note: I also have a 17 year old Z4 and when(not if) my lifters fail, I'll simply go manually.

  6. #6
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    I was really proud of myself for moving the pump. I guess, like you say, I can use it manually for the time being. I know to replace the hinge lifters you have to remove the top which is what I tried to avoid. It never ends with this car. I suppose I'll sell my motorcycle later on to get all the parts for the top.

  7. #7
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    I found my bmw convertible kit if you need the banjo washer size.. looks copper ?
    con10.jpg

  8. #8
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    I was able to reuse the washers on my pump with no leaks. Now, however, it appears fluid is flowing out of my hinge lifters. Someone said the seals might just be worn out, but it could be I had to much fluid in the pump, too much pressure on 17 year old parts.

  9. #9
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    450 rebuild, wont cost a whole bike... https://www.tophydraulics.com/55-bmw-z4

  10. #10
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    I have their videos on pump relocation and hinge removal. I'll take this route which will call for a top removal to remove the hinges. Just another step in the ownership of a 17 year old German automobile.

  11. #11
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    Tombrhill. Did this top removal job on my 2005 Z4 about two months ago. The biggest hassle was the two clips holding the u-frame in the very front corners of the trunk. It's almost impossible to get the frame out of these clips. There are access holes in the frame and through the clips so I simply took the screw out of the clips and remove them with the frame. After I got the frame out I removed the clips from the frame and remounted them back in place before reinstalling the top which just snaps down in the clips. The cost of having the cylinders was about $450.00. Used a company in Sarasota to do the rebuild. Great people and service, Three day turn around. CabHyd.com

  12. #12
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    Thank you D Target, I didn't know about this company. As I live in Southeast Ga, it would be more convenient for me to use a Florida company with comparable prices to Top Hydraulic s. No telling what I'll run into after top is removed. The hinges were not leaking after I moved the pump. The next day after adding more fluid , I saw puddles of fluid on both sides

    - - - Updated - - -

    Sorry about the spell check, D Yager

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by D Yager View Post
    Tombrhill. Did this top removal job on my 2005 Z4 about two months ago. The biggest hassle was the two clips holding the u-frame in the very front corners of the trunk. It's almost impossible to get the frame out of these clips. There are access holes in the frame and through the clips so I simply took the screw out of the clips and remove them with the frame. After I got the frame out I removed the clips from the frame and remounted them back in place before reinstalling the top which just snaps down in the clips. The cost of having the cylinders was about $450.00. Used a company in Sarasota to do the rebuild. Great people and service, Three day turn around. CabHyd.com

    Outstanding tip on getting around those clips. Thanks for sharing!

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