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BMW 3-Series Maintenance and Repair

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  • In the last 2 days, our 2007 328i sedan makes a scraping noise when going over a speed bump, but not if one front wheel only goes over. It doesn't do this for potholes.
    52k miles. Dealer suggested sway bar bushings but said it wasn't necessary?
  • So I bought my '04 330xi back in August with 79,000 miles on it, and around 2 months later was without a car for almost 2 weeks because of a failed CCV and DISA - caused misfirings, insane oil consumption and a host of other issues. I think the time it was out was a result of not taking it to the right mechanic from the get-go.

    With the exception of my expansion tank blowing out when the temperature here in Pittsburgh dropped to 4 degrees in December, I have had no problems - my mechanic was able to swap out the expansion tank, add coolant and bleed the system within 15 minutes of me bringing my car in.

    Plans for March when he takes my snow tires off? Engine Mounts, checking the intake boot for any tears, inspecting the driveline for any damage thanks to potholes, and either an Auto Trans Fluid change or a new radiator (preventatively).

    roadburner - At 84,000 miles have I missed the window for doing a trans fluid change? I would hate to cause the failure of my transmission for having it changed at a point later than I should.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Doesn't sound like bushings to me.

    Do you get the noise when the front end goes over the bumps, or the back end?
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    roadburner - At 84,000 miles have I missed the window for doing a trans fluid change? I would hate to cause the failure of my transmission for having it changed at a point later than I should.

    There are a lot of different opinions on that. I had a drain and fill(no filter change) performed on my wife's 528iA at 100,000 miles and the lady we sold it to now has close to 200,000 miles on it with no issues. That said, more than a few techs say leave it alone if it if the ATF wasn't changed prior to 60,000 miles. I'd probably roll the dice and change it- but with the understanding that I'd be chancing a premature failure.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • Hi Mr Shiftright, I purchased a new Acura RSX in 2006. As a middleaged female, I babied it, handwashed it, oil change every 4k-5k miles, etc etc. With 4 payments left and 70k miles on the car, the engine blew out of no where. Acura treated me like dirt. They talked to me like trash, offered no assistance and the customer service center in California was terrible. I got assigned to the same rude lady that said over and over again "Ma'am, we will not even consider assisting you unless you come up with every oil change receipt every 3k miles." period.... Needless to say, a friend of mine heard about how I was treated and put in a engine from a junk yard ($2k) and I traded it in to the dealer next door to the Acura dealership (also owned by the same) and got a Misti Eclipse SE. Dealer wanted $6k just to rebuild top half of original engine.... crazy. So the morale of my story is I guess you never know what your gonna get.. I see Escorts on the road still running 12 years later.... just never know.
  • Anyone have any comments about the relilability of a 2008 335xi (twin turbo)?? or, maybe I just answered my own question. (my grandpa used to say, if you have to ask, you can't afford..lol). I can afford the car, just the mainenance scares me. It does come with the balance of warranty (car has 36k miles on it) and the warranty that comes with a certified used. But, as a female, a single female, that lives week to week,,, I just cannot afford big ticket items (turbo/transmission/etc). And, I agree with a comment previous about Motor Trend magazine constantly praising the 3 series,,, then I look at the reviews and they seem average. (???). Thanks!!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,945
    Yep, once the warranty runs out, all bets are off on a car. You simply cannot count on what a complex piece of machinery will do over time. A certain small percentage of new cars will self-destruct "before their time" and I don't know why some get stuck and some don't. Life is not fair. :(

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • mylesrmylesr Posts: 9
    I got this reading #0411 on my 325i w/72K miles...service engine soon light is on as well. I have a K&M lifetime airfilter installed and just cleaned it. I was told the secondary air system is usually just for CA emissions...anyone have experience w/this? I am using regular gas and gety 22mpg.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    If you are that worried buy a 328i with a manual transmission. That's a great package and you eliminate three potentially expensive components- the turbos, AWD system, and the automatic. That said, I'm taking a hard look at a 335i manual at my local dealer- but then I'm looking for a car that can double as a daily driver as well as a track toy.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • I had an accident yesterday with my 2011 BMW. The damage to the car was the bottom panel under the passenger side door as well as the door and area above right side front wheel. My question is I'm wondering how the car will drive after the repairs. My concern is that the airbags never deployed during the accident ? Any information regarding the repair and or air bag deployment would be great. I'm pretty concerned about the car after the repair is complete?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    From the sound of things the accident was very minor and caused only damage to some of the exterior sheet-metal. What that means is:

    1) The accident wasn't even remotely severe enough to cause air-bag deployment, and
    2) once the skins of your car have been replaced and repainted, there will be zero change in how the car rides and handles.
  • Did you put additional oil in the filter or has the filter been in there for a long time? I got the check engine light AFTER I put in K&M filter and needed to replace the Mass Air Flow Sensor.
  • I am thinking about buying the above car at a local dealer for $29k, with 36k miles. Does anyone have any comment?? Should the maintenance on this type of engine scare me?? Even though it does come with a 3 year warranty. THanks!! ANy comments would be appreciated.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    edited February 2011
    The price is a bit high in my opinion; check out the CPO section of the BMW NA web site to get some comps. The main problem on the N54 motor is the failure of the high pressure fuel pump(HPFP). BMW recently issued a recall and the fix seems to have solved the problem- in any case the HPFP is warranted for 10 tears or 100,000 miles. Depending on how long you want to keep the car, I would have the ATF, transfer case fluid, and differential oil changed at around 50,000 miles, which should cost $500-$750. Other than that you are basically looking at oil changes, filter replacements, as well as brake fluid flushes every two years(less than $200) and coolant flushes every four years(ditto). Dealer service on my wife's 2004 X3 costs @$500 year, although that number can vary based on location.
    As I mentioned in my previous post, I would buy a RWD stick to maximize my driving pleasure and remove two potential expensive repairs in the bargain- although I would be extremely surprised if the automatic or the transfer case died before 150,000 miles.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    The main problem on the N54 motor is the failure of the high pressure fuel pump(HPFP). BMW recently issued a recall and the fix seems to have solved the problem- in any case the HPFP is warranted for 10 tears or 100,000 miles.

    Maybe, but I would say the jury is still out on the HPFP "fix". Many owners will tell you they have heard the issue was fixed many times, only to have it resurface. There have been many generations of "fixed" HPFP's to date...
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    Maybe, but I would say the jury is still out on the HPFP "fix".

    Note that I said "seems"- in any event, my comment was based on information from inside BMW NA, BMW SAs, and tech people outside of BMW. As you know, the recall also includes testing the injectors as well as software revisions. It's also well known that the majority of cars have never suffered HPFP failure while others are on their fourth or fifth HPFP. So yes, There have been prior "fixes"- but the latest fix seems to have worked.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • rflrfl Posts: 100
    3 strikes and you're out. I had 3 HPFP failures (2 of them dangerous one's at high speed) on my 2008 335XI. Let's just say that BMW stepped up to the plate in a big way. The N54 is a DOG ! What's unfortunate is that BMW knows it, knew it and it took them years to offer a recall which DOES NOT NECESSARILY FIX THE PROBLEM. It just replaces the HPFP with another one that doesn't have a great reliability factor. Why do you think it's now the N55 with a single Turbo charger. From a 40 year- 12 BMW owner....get rid of the car. The fix is undependable. Down right a possible lethal hazard. I still own 2 new BMWs and am thrilled with both of them. Good old 240-260 HP naturally aspirated tried and true engines. Besides...I'm getting too old for a turbo...even one that works. :lemon:
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2011
    3 strikes and you're out. I had 3 HPFP failures (2 of them dangerous one's at high speed) on my 2008 335XI.

    The problem has been continuing for over 4 years now. Now, immediately after a network news expose' showing the issue over national network TV, an immediate fix/recall was announced.

    That might be good enough for some, but before I dropped 50+ Large on a new 335, I would want a little more evidence showing the fix is indeed a "fix".

    This is not the small, insignificant issue that some would like to believe.

    BTW, I own 3 BMW products... A MINI convertible, Z4 Coupe and a 328I convertible, so I am definitely not anti-BMW...
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    Note that I said "seems"- in any event, my comment was based on information from inside BMW NA, BMW SAs, and tech people outside of BMW. As you know, the recall also includes testing the injectors as well as software revisions. It's also well known that the majority of cars have never suffered HPFP failure while others are on their fourth or fifth HPFP. So yes, There have been prior "fixes"- but the latest fix seems to have worked.

    I disagree with your conclusion, simply because the fix hasn't seen enough real-time & real-world testing.

    It may indeed be the permanent fix, but for a company that has denied the issue for 4+ years to then state its been fixed simply isn't good enough for me personally.

    And, yes, while the majority of owners may not have experienced the problems, what would you say would be an acceptable number?

    1 out of 100? 2,3, 5 or 10 out of 100? That's still not a majority.

    Do you know how many different versions of HPFP's have been involved?

    If YOU have one of the 1,2,3, 5 or 10, then you would most likely feel its a much larger issue.

    I would...
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    If YOU have one of the 1,2,3, 5 or 10, then you would most likely feel its a much larger issue.

    I would...


    Well, I'm currently considering the purchase of a 335i, so I guess you could say I'm willing to back up my words with action.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    Its a nice car, and if you take the plunge I hope you don't see any of the problems associated with the HPFP.

    As you said, 100% of the cars don't have the problems.
  • Unfortunately, welcome to the club. My car had this happen when I was leaving to work. Had the vehicle towed to the dealer yesterday. Thankfully still has CPO. Unfortunately, they said they had to reprogram the car to see if this resolved the issue. Honestly, I do not think so. Probably needs whole new steering column. Contacted attorneys suing for minicooper Class Action to see if they want to take this up. I would file a complaint with NHTSA to make sure your issue is documented. Particularly since I called BMW and they state their is no investigation by the NHTSA. They are treating it as an isolated problem when there are many posts for E46 and E90 models, I believe X3 as well. Here is the link to file a NHTSA complaint: http://www.safercar.gov/link">
  • I think I'm going to get a Pontiac G8 GT instead... it's serviced locally at a chevy dealer, the reviews are raving,, replacement parts won't be that expensive,,, although it's a Pontiac (never thought I would even think about it),, it's supposed to be an awesome sport sedan. Thanks ya'll!!
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    The G8 is a great car, but remember that it is built in Australia and replacement parts may well be an issue over the next few years. Edmunds had a long term G8 and they had to wait two weeks for brake pads- and this was over a year ago.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • rhmassrhmass Posts: 263
    roadrunner, in your suggestion posted you mentioned replacing both the transfer box oil and the automatic transmission fluid. I was making appointment with the dealer today for the 60,000 miles (Inspection II) service on our 2006 325xiT. The service advisor told me the dealer's service foreman would not recommend such maintenance performed due to the potential damage to the respective components. I am now confused as to why he would discourage me for such services, since obviously I will be paying it our of my own pocket. Is there really a possibility for negative outcome from such service. Since my appointment is a week from now, so I still can insist on the services, if I want to do so.

    What is your opinion on the reason the dealership wouldn't want to perform such service? TIA for your advice.
  • Any opinions on whether I should change my fuel filter or not? My 323ci has 325,000 miles on it (runs great too engine never rebuilt). It is easy to get to and change but it has never been changed. Will it damange my engine if I don't change it? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    The service advisor told me the dealer's service foreman would not recommend such maintenance performed due to the potential damage to the respective components.

    My dealer performed a drain/fill on the automatic transmission(no filter R&R) and transfer case of my wife's X3 without any hesitation- the total bill was $207. If you want to replace the filter on the newer ZF autoboxes -like your car uses- you have to replace the oil pan and filter as a unit. and the new part costs @$270. Having said that, a simple darin/fill or the AT and TC is NOT rocket science, and I'd be very inclined to tell your SA that if the foreman doesn't think his shop is competent to handle what is a very simple job then you will find a shop that is qualified.
    A few other observations:
    BMW still calls for a 100,000 mile ATF change on most of their automatics; what does your dealer tell those customers?
    The transfer case is equipped with sensors that actually indicate when the fluid needs to be changed and will indicate a fault when hooked up to the DISplus or GT1 diagnostic computer. Does your dealer just ignore the fault and send the customers down the road in blissful ignorance?
    Just my $0.02...

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,853
    Change it; a clogged filter won't damage your engine but it could shorten the life of your fuel pump(s).

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Change it? Why? Fuel filters these days are good for an easy quarter of a million miles, errr, that is unless you live in the middle of a very dusty desert.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,667
    ? what makes you say that?
    I can't say I've had a newer vehicle long enough to text your theory. Last vehicle I even took past the 100k mark was a '98. But if a fuel filter would last that long, what would be the point to having a filter at all? I mean, if what is coming out of your tank is THAT clean, then it certainly wouldn't hurt your engine.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

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