"Is it worth going through a contested passing of accounts because of a trustee who wants more than his 5 percent or are the costs involved so great that it's better to give in and let this trustee have his extra money even though he's been taking forever and not done things the way they were supposed to be done (never giving a proper accounting or any information at all) up to the point where I won't get anywhere with this situation without a lawyer's help?"
The question of whether it's "worth it" is on the face of it a question about money. You'd like to know whether the cost of hiring a lawyer is going to outweigh the savings to the estate. I'll talk about that, but I'd like to say that this question really is about more than money.
Your frustration comes out in the way you've worded your question. Obviously you have serious misgivings about the way this executor conducted himself during the course of the estate administration. Ask yourself whether you can live with him getting extra pay for doing such a terrible job. While a court fight can destroy any relationship between an executor and a beneficiary, so can the resentment felt by one party who feels the other has taken advantage of him.
Please understand that I'm not encouraging you to go to court; I just want you to recognize that you may harbour hard feelings for the executor after the estate is over if you allow him to do something that you feel is wrong. You may be okay with that, or you may not, but take it into account as you decide whether taking him on is worth it.
Passing of accounts applications are not the most expensive kind of lawsuit out there, since they generally are not a full trial with all the bells and whistles, but it's still a lot of money.
There may be a middle ground between "giving in" and taking the executor to court. The situation you've described sounds like something that could really be helped by mediation. The advantages to you would be that it is less expensive and less time-consuming than going to court, and that you get to say everything you need to say to the executor. You would hear his side of it too, but in a setting that is more about clearing the air and coming to an agreement than fighting it out.
Not everyone hires a lawyer for mediation, since the lawyers don't speak for you during mediation sessions. You and the executor would speak for yourselves and the lawyers would really only be there to advise on legal points, if they are there at all. The lawyers also do any preparation work requested by the mediator, if you find it too much to do on your own. If there are other beneficiaries of the estate, they should participate too, and perhaps you could share the cost of a lawyer with them.
I strongly urge you to consider this, as it wouldn't deplete the estate (or your bank account) and would be a lot easier on everyone's stress levels. If the mediation doesn't work, your last resort would be a lawsuit.