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BMW 7-Series Maintenance and Repair

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  • I'll find out which glue the shop tried. The plastic neck seems reasonably firm, but its subject to jarring, obviously. I also saw an amazing epoxy that sets up fast used by a body shop to reattach the flexible plastic trim under the driver door. I might ask them for it.

    If not I guess it's a new radiator.
  • yeah well welcome to the BMW radiator club.
  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150
    I find it truly amazing that the American consumer puts BMW, Range Rover, and other car lines into the SuperBrand category. The monthly maintenance bills on an out of waranty Bimmer or Rover have got to average $500 a month. For the Ultimate Drivers Machine to use plastic components such as plastic water pump impellers in the cooling systm is absoutely irresponsible. The typcial new GM car has zero, repeat zero maintenance out to 100,000 miles. Just change the oil, use synthetic if you are a keeper, and rotate the tires once in a while and you are free to travel about the country until 100,000 miles.

    Oh, well this must be the reason that a flawless 06 750i is now worth less than 40K.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    They are wonderful cars to drive and you pay for the privilege of that experience, and for the prestige of ownership. You simply cannot compare apples and oranges. A bicycle would be even cheaper to maintain. :P

    And it's not $500 a month. With the worst of luck, maybe $250 a month out of warranty. Still cheaper than buying a new Yaris.
  • Hello all, I am brand new to this forum and a brand new BMW owner. I recently purchased a used 98 740i, have had it for 2 weeks and have fallen absolutely in love with it. That said, the car mysteriously and suddenly died while driving on the highway. It was as if it ran out of gas. I am trying to save some money on the mechanic and am going to try and diagnose the problem myself, and thus far am waiting on the repair manual cd's in the mail.

    I wanted to pose to the community if there is a common problem with these symptons. It very well could be and probably is a fuel filter or pump or something of the sort, but was wondering if anyone had any info. I did not run out of gas, and all of the electrical components outside of the hood are working fine, but I have not tested anything under the hood yet.

    Anything would be helpful,

    Thanks
  • sysadb420sysadb420 Posts: 12
    Bickisland - by maintenance I assume you mean repairs? My car is not the best example since I only just turned 70K miles on my 98, but I have spent $1200 on repairs since I bought the car in August 2000. I've spent another $1700 on service including F&R brakes and 2 batteries. To be fair, several items broke during the warranty 4-year period including the water pump and the CD changer. It also had electrical issues with most of the exterior lights. That problem seemed to be a design issue as a service bulletin repair straightened it out. But with my car the bottom line is that most problems were caught and fixed during the warranty period and have not re-occured.

    I've had very few problems since the warranty ran out June 2002. This radiator leak is the first in awhile. I bought the two year old car for $41.5K in 2000 with 13.6K miles on it, and could easily sell it for $10K now. So from my perspective it's cost me about $31K in depreciation plus $3K in maintenance and repairs. Not bad, IMO, for 8.5 years of driving the best. I would admit that the equation is more expensive if you buy one new due to the rapid depreciation the first couple years. But the flip side is that you can buy a fabulous used car at a good price due to that depreciation.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    Have a scanner might help for diagnosis. I suppose that without one you could do some crude sleuthing---for instance you could check for spark in the usual manner---and/or you could squirt some starting ether into the intake--if the car fires up for a second, then you know you have a fuel delivery problem and not an ignition problem.

    Those repair CDs generally aren't any good, if they're the $9.95 variety. That's a kind way of putting it. CRAP would be more like it.

    You may need to invest in something better.

    http://www.bimmerzone.com/bmwproducts.htm#38

    Well worth it for the DIYer. That and a hand-held scanner and a service light reset tool.
  • bmlexusbmlexus Posts: 755
    And it's not $500 a month. With the worst of luck, maybe $250 a month out of warranty. Still cheaper than buying a new Yaris

    What do you mean by, still cheaper than buying a new yaris :confuse:
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    I meant that if you bought a new Yaris that's about what it would cost you per month---$250+.

    Soooooo even though it SEEMS like you might be spending a good deal on your out of warranty luxurious great handling 7 series, you STILL couldn't buy much of a new car for the same money.

    I trust this clarifies my obscure prose.
  • bmlexusbmlexus Posts: 755
    I meant that if you bought a new Yaris that's about what it would cost you per month---$250+.

    Soooooo even though it SEEMS like you might be spending a good deal on your out of warranty luxurious great handling 7 series, you STILL couldn't buy much of a new car for the same money.


    Well, at least the Yaris will keep you away from a workshop for at least 3 years, it wont get you stranded in the middle of nowhere.

    I've read so many bad reviews about the x6, even from people I know who work for bmw, its hard for me to buy and trust a brand new bmw for reliability issues. I don't want to get worried about my new car engine being over heated on a long drive and be stuck in an unknown place in the middle of nowhere.

    A used bmw seems to be out of the question, at least for me.

    Thank for the quick reply
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    well it's a trade-off. No Lexus equivalent model so far drives anything like a BMW 7 Series. Not even close.
  • Hi, im new to this forum and I'm very close to buying a 98 740i with 105,632 miles. however, how does this car handle in the snow, bcoz i plan on moving to Minnesota after this summer...Thanks.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    Should be fine with 4 snow tires and a good snow driver---the driver is at least 50% of the equation of what we call "good in snow".

    Of course, you aren't going through snow drifts like a jacked-up 4X4, so be realistic as to what you attempt.
  • eric312eric312 Posts: 71
    I used to have 2001 740 with sports rims/tires. In NY snow the car was very difficult to drive. Not sure how it would have been with snow tires.

    Also, with 100k+ miles i would be VERY careful. Repairs on this car are very expensive.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    Well sport rims and tires would be the worst possible combo for snow, so I'm not surprised you had difficulty. I applaud your ability to get around at all on a setup like that.

    With 4 snows, this big heavy car should be okay, but ground clearance could be a problem.

    As for repair and maintenance, I presume the buyer already knows about that and is ready to deal with it.
  • Hi,
    Like i said b4 I want to get one of these cars. I have test driven the 98 740i with 105,632 miles. everything works perfectly, although the engine sounds like that of a motorcycle from the outside, bt like a V8 from the inside.

    The 00 740il has 60,362 miles, bt needs engine work (oil pump is spoilt). Which do u think i should go for, mind you the 98 has a flood record.

    Thanks
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    The engine overhaul will cost you more than the entire car is worth, so forget that one. Free wouldn't be cheap enough, sorry. :cry:

    I think you should pass on both cars given what you've presented to us. My two cents.
  • bobmc4bobmc4 Posts: 2
    Just looked at a 92 w/157k. Warning message Tacho. No service records. Body and interior in good shape. Owner says there was a small fluid leak in the interior of driver side.(his freing "bypassed" the leak. He wants $2500. What do you think?
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,636
    Okay so it's got a leaking heater core. This is a 735 right?

    So that's about $175 for the heater core.

    Labor to R&R is 8.0 hours

    Labor to evacuate and replace AC freon --- not sure about this.

    Anyway, total cost where I live would be about $1350.

    This presumes that the AC system is okay....or you can just skip fixing the AC part and just do the heater core for maybe $1200.

    We assume you want the car to have at least heat/defrost?

    Your call on that. My impression is that you can buy a very nice clean 735i with no major problems for about $3000--$3500.

    If I were buying it, to cover my butt, I'd offer $1500 tops.
  • sysadb420sysadb420 Posts: 12
    Update on trying to epoxy the radiator neck: It's a no-go. I loosened the overflow cap to relieve pressure, let it sit a couple days after 2 applications so it could cure, and after one dry day I saw a coolant drop on the second day - before starting it or resuming pressure in the system. I then drove it about 20 miles and it seems to be retarding the leak, but it's still leaking.

    I'd say a new radiator is in my future.
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