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BMW 3-Series Maintenance and Repair

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Comments

  • kominskykominsky Posts: 850
    Good to hear you got it resolved.

    FWIW, my car has ~130K miles on it and other than the ignitor problem early on, the HIDs have been flawless. On my wife's Odyssey, with similar miles, I've replaced the halogen on one side twice and the other side once. So, based on personal experience, it seems that while the xenons are more complicated and would be expensive (out of warranty), they are more robust too. I believe in the future I'll stick with HIDs simply for the wider pattern... our area is loaded with whitetail deer and it's really nice seeing the green glow of their eyes BEFORE they make it to the road!
  • jodanjodan Posts: 4
    I have an AWD, so far I have no problem with it. 325xi 2004.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,019
    There are lots of different opinions on this issue. I change the oil every 7500 miles using a BMW Longlife 01 approved oil. Some commonly available oils that meet this standard are Castrol Syntec 0W-30, Mobil 1 0W-40, Valvoline 5W-40, and BMW's own synthetic 5W-30 house brand(which is a Castrol product, but NOT the same as Syntec 0W-30). I use Mobil 1 because I have always been pleased with its performance. My wife drives a 2005 X3 2.5 which has the same engine as your car. I once ran the 0W-40 oil for 9000 miles and then had a used oil analysis performed. The results indicated I could have run the oil an additional 1000 miles. Still, I just feel more comfortable changing it at half the interval called for by the car's service interval indicator.

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

  • Hi, I have a 1997 318TI AT which is over 11K miles and I just found out the timing belt need to replace A.S.A.P.
    I am wondering if anyone can suggest a specialist or repair shop in Los Angeles which can do the job. I do not want go back to BMW because I have many bad experience with them before. Thanks.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,019
    Hi, I have a 1997 318TI AT which is over 11K miles and I just found out the timing belt need to replace A.S.A.P.

    Your car has the M44 1.9 liter engine which has a timing chain. Your car should easily go at least 150K before you should even have to think about replacing it. Who told you that the non-existent belt needed to be replaced? In any case, I'd look here if you still need to find an independent BMW tech.

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

  • I am sorry, I forgot my car was a second hand car and it is 95' 318TI AT. Also have you ever tried those independent BMW tech before? Are they reliable? Thank you for your quick response.
  • ftrohaftroha Posts: 21
    For what it's worth, seven years ago I was told by a mechanic that I probably needed to replace the timing belt in my '93 318is. If I recall, the cost would have been around 1K. Rather than tell him to go ahead with the repair, I did some research on the Internet and learned that the problem might be the belt tensioner, a much cheaper repair. I went back to the mechanic with my printouts of a couple of articles I had found and the cost of the part needed (i.e., the tensioner). When he got around to checking my car out, he did in fact discover all I needed was the tensioner. I've been driving the car ever since, and I've had no problems related to the belt itself (which is still the original) or the tensioner. The point of my writing this is it's quite possible (given the similar make/model/year) that your car has a tensioner issue at this point in its life.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,019
    Also have you ever tried those independent BMW tech before? Are they reliable?

    I know several BIMRS members, but haven't dealt with any in your area. The shops I do know provide first class service. Are you a BMW CCA member? If so, ask some local chapter members which shops they use.

    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: 6,019
    For what it's worth, seven years ago I was told by a mechanic that I probably needed to replace the timing belt in my '93 318is.

    Repeat after me:

    No US spec BMW four cylinder engine has EVER used a timing belt.

    That said, BMW did supercede the M42 chain tensioner with the improved version(PN:11311743187) which was fitted to later cars.

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

  • I have a 325ci. When I drive, there is a thumping noise which appears to come from the left rear tire area. It occurs about every 5-10 seconds while driving straight.
    The tires are fine..no high spots, balanced and inflated properly. I have had several people look at it, but they can't determine what the cause is. Any suggestions where I should begin looking? (one person told me the rear axle seemed to have too much play..could that be it?)
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,019
    I have a 325ci. When I drive, there is a thumping noise which appears to come from the left rear tire area. It occurs about every 5-10 seconds while driving straight.

    Sounds like the left rear shock mount. It's no big deal; just replace them with these HD items.

    (one person told me the rear axle seemed to have too much play... could that be it?)

    This is why you shouldn't let a moron inspect your BMW. Your car doesn't have a rear axle. It has a differential(also called a final drive) as well as two half shafts. I hope you didn't pay that idiot anything.

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

  • Thank you for your reply. I am going to check into that tomorrow.
    (I did not pay anyone for their advice....good thing!)
  • eddgeddg Posts: 1
    HELLO EVERYONE ED HERE, LAST SEPT I BOUGHT A 2002 325I I WANT TO INCREASE H/P INSTANTLY! WHATS THE MOST RELIABLE,EASIEST,AND FRUGAL WAY TO DO IT???

    I AM CONSIDERING A TURBO/SUPERCHARGER... WHATS A RELIABLE BRAND TO BUY.WITHOUT CHARGING MY LIL' CREDIT CARD TO 10.K

    I WANT A SYSTEM THAT COMES COMPLETE. ALSO, I LIVE IN SOUTH TEXAS SO ITS PRETTY DARN HOT IN THE SUMMER BUT WINTERS ARENT THAT BAD HOW WILLL THE WEATHER EFFECT THE PERFORMANCE?

    SOMEONE LET ME KNOW PLEASE! :shades:
  • No easy cheap way to get HP out of a BMW 325i. The engineers didn't leave too much on the table that you could easily scoop up.

    A turbo is probably the best way to go but it's not cheap and it has its problems; otherwise, I'd say you'd get more fun out of better tires and struts and at least more noise out of a nice cat-back exhaust (but not much HP). So for maybe $1,500 bucks you can go around turns faster and make more noise doing it---that's fun.

    You'll see all sorts of silly claims for cheap horsepower but they don't seem to pan out on the dyno, so I'd suggest handling and a nice sound is the very best way to spend your money. If you want a turbo, that'll give you real HP but it's going to cost a lot of money.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Piece of cake, sell your 325i and buy a 330i.
  • tur--BO! tur---BO!

    shipo may be of the school (if I may speak for him) that says "If you want a faster BMW, go buy a faster BMW".
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Yupper! ;-)
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,019
    Yep, sell the 325i and buy an E46 330i with the Performance Package(AKA: ZHP).
    If that's too rich for your blood find a nice E36 M3 and fit a Conforti Cold Air Intake and Shark injector.
    Either of the above options will be less expensive -and probably quicker- than bolting a supercharger or turbocharger to your 325i. If you still want to pump up your 325i, I'd go with the Active Autowerke supercharger. It costs $4400, plus labor if you can't do it yourself. That assumes your engine is in good condition; if it's a bit tired, the added stress of forced induction will almost certainly hasten its demise. You also need to understand that it's not simply a matter of pumping an additional 90 RWHP into your 325i; you will need to upgrade the brakes and suspension to cope with the additional horsepower, so add another $2500-$5000 for that. And when all is said and done, I can almost guarantee that you won't get your money back when you eventually go to sell it.

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

  • Well said! OEM turbo engines are generally internally strengthened. If you have ANY weakness in your 325i engine, a bolt-on turbocharger will find it for you immediately. But with boost control, bigger injectors, intercooler and sensible driving (you don't want long periods of boost applied on a stock engine), you'd probably only decrease engine life maybe 10%.
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