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BMW 7-Series Maintenance and Repair

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  • the odometer registered 51,062. carfax report indicates 51,943 as of 9/20/04. this is confusing. which of these is valid.

    the extended warranty by Driver Edge VSC, Inc, excludes any tune-up item (spark plugs and wires, distributor cap and carburator), electronic equipments (alarm system, telphone, clock and inverter), normal maintenance items (tires, wheels, wheel covers, shock absorbers, alignment, brake shoes or pads, rotors or drums, belts, thermostats, houses, filters, exhaust or emission parts, clutch, pressure plates or clutch release bearing and CV boots).
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Well forget it, that's most of the car for gawd's sake. And "all that" for only $3,300?

    You need to keep shopping. THere MUST be a better warranty out there. (Actually, these aren't warranties, these are insurance policies you are buying---they are betting you DON'T need the repairs and you are betting you do).

    Also the discrepancy between CARFAX and your odometer is troubling.

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  • You are very kind. Thank for you advice.
  • Well I got the heater core replaced, it took my mechanic a day and a half. What's unusual about this replacement is that when the mechanic ordered the heater core from the dealer. The core design was changed by BMW. So that makes me wonder, that they are aware of a problem with the heater core. But there is no recall for it. My mechanic says he has never in his experience seen a BMW heater core give out. But there is always a first. But in any case the total cost was 997.0 which is expensive, but would of been more from the dealer. Just wanted to let you know. Also after he completely re assembled the dash. He noticed that the air bag icon came on, and he told me that the bag sensor is not working. This another problem , I'll have to get the dealer involved. He said it could be a routine maintaince that has to be rest. In your experience is that true, or do I have to worry about a repair. Please let me know your thoughts on this issue.

    Regards,
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Maybe he forgot to connect something? If the light wasn't on before, I think it might be his baby.

    There isn't a "recall" on items not related to safety. Re-designs of less than perfect components goes on all the time in the auto industry and they are rarely publicized.

    If the inlet tube to the heater core snapped off or cracked, that is SO typically BMW.

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  • oniononion Posts: 1
    Hi, I'm new to this forum and am about to buy an '01 740iL from Carmax w/ 51k miles for about $31.5k. I've done extensive research on this '01 model and it's rated as the highest 7-series BMW in terms of reliability going back to the early 90's. I'm wondering why.. is it because by '01 they finally perfected this model before they changed it in '02 ? any thoughts ? also, Carmax offers a Maxcare warranty for 3 yr/36k miles for $1,800, thinking it's a must, thoughts ?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Well this isn't a "warranty" it's an insurance policy, and Carmax is betting you'll have fewer than $1,800 in repairs (which are covered by them). So in most cases the "house wins" on these contracts.

    One reason they might win is the exclusions in the Maxcare warranty. You have to read it very carefully for exclusions and decide if it's still worth it. Obviously, by putting in exclusions, the warranty (insurance) company is improving their odds, and it would be interesting to know what they aren't betting on.

    But if it's a decent policy, I'd consider it. You can run up $1,800 at a BMW dealer real easy.

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  • I suspected the howling/wobbling sound generated by the front tires were associated with uneven tire wear pattern.

    I have a 01 740iL Sport equipped with Michelen Pilot. The left showed a slight uneven wear on the outside thread, which I thought to be the source of the howling/wobbling sound. The right front shows a normal wear pattern.

    I replaced all four tires with Hankook Ventace K104 that match OEM tire size. The sound level decreased but was not completely eliminated. Although not quite as loud as the sound generated by the old tires, the sound level becomes more pronounced at speeds greater than 55MPH.

    Is the sound generated by the thread design (both tires are similar in design) or is there mechanical fault with the car (i.e. defective front wheel bearing).
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    I have noticed that on BMWs you seem to get a lot of noise with tires that are directional, rather than rotate-able.

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  • Hi, I have a 94 740i that quit on me and my mechanic is telling me that there was a bad batch of that engine and that the original owner never had it replaced by BMW as part of a service recall that was not well publicized. Does anyone here know more about this?

    Also, I am now looking to replace the engine, but I need to know how to identify the "bad" engines so that I don't get stuck again. Is it a rage of serial numbers, does anyone know?

    thanks in advance.
  • By All means, get the extended warrranty. I leased a '98 740 Il in December 99. Did the maintenance. At 89,000 miles , the engine had to be replaced, warranty covered it , but i was sweating for 4 weeks while they decided what to do. I leased a 2000 740Il, in part because they
    inferred that If I did they would look favorably.
    The 2000 740 Il : Navigation is poor. The Air Mass Sensor failed twice. Car dropped dead on the road, once on I 95. Dash read "Emergency Engine Failsafe shutdown". Not something I Wanted to see after the debacle with the first.

    The cars has been towed to the dealer the last 4 of 5 visits. The Power steering hoses failed, Radiator failed, window regulator and motor failed, Fan Clutch assembly failed.

    Anyone want to buy a car for parts. Thank god I only have 6 months on the lease. Unfortunately
    the warranty expires in July. I will probably give it back early rather than risk owning it out of warranty. Good Luck

    Bob
  • bmw12345bmw12345 Posts: 1
    Looking to purchase my first BMW (1999 740il with 63k miles). It looks great and the owner has all of his maintenance records from the local BMW dealer. He actually just did the 60k routine maintenance. The owner is asking $19,500. I have always owned Japanese cars. Since this is my first venture into a BMW, I'd like to know up front if there are going to be any common problems that may arise with this 1999 740il. Any feedback would help.
  • Wife and I love the style of the 96-99 740il. The models we have seen are in our range. My concern is the ownership cost. I am assuming the worst that could happen. Anyone know how much it is to rebuild the engine or transmission. I am looking to keep for another 10 years.
  • blckislandguyblckislandguy Posts: 1,150
    Reading the posts here and on other boards about the 7 Series Ownership experience is depressing. Lots of people, some maybe without enough cash, think that they can get into a 7 Series for little money because of the low resale and then enjoy a 7 Series on the cheap. Guys, there is a reason why the resale prices are so low. Think about it. A MY2000 7 Series could be a money pit that could go right through your wallet. Then you'd put an ad in the paper and offer yet another 7 Series at a give away price and hope that the buyer wouldn't come back to haunt you.

    If you just gotta have a high end car and yet can't pay the price for a new one with the factory warranty, IMO the best deal is a very late model XJ Series Jaguar. They are relatively cheap to buy because the initial MSPR is a good 15K less than a 7 Series, the reputation they had for poor QC hasn't washed out yet, and, frankly, they don't have the buzz of BMW or MB. They do though have more reliability at a lower price. So, less money, less flash, more reliability. Seems simple to me.
  • houmanhouman Posts: 2
    Just bought a 745i sport and wife is complaining about the rough ride which I have to agree with. Is this common? can it be reduced if I change wheels to 18?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Have you checked your tire pressure against factory recommendations?

    What is your stock tire size now and what is the brand/type?

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  • houmanhouman Posts: 2
    its a Dunlop 245/40 19
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Okay, Here's the deal.

    The 19s on that car ride hard and you're stuck with it...but the car also came with 18s I believe. Maybe your dealer will swap them out for you if you bought the car new from him?

    If you can't get 18s or don't want them, you have two other choices:

    1. deflate the 19s to 32-34 lbs---this will improve the ride BUT CAUSE EDGEWEAR on those tires.

    2. You can switch to Michelin Pilot Sport AS tires, which will ride better in the 19" size than the Dunlaps.

    Your 745 is designed for high speed sport driving. It isn't a mall cruiser so that's why it rides like a race car---it sort of is built to perform like one and the ride is not to everyone's taste.

    So there you go, hope that helps.

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  • oconnomoconnom Posts: 1
    I want to retrofit a genuine BMW E32 cruise control, anyone able to e-mail me the cruise wiring diagram ?
    Mick
  • 92735i92735i Posts: 25
    I am the original owner of a 92 735i that now has 210,000 miles and running strong. I did a top end freshen up at 160,000 miles. The only other major work is the front end ball joints, struts etc. $1400. The a/c evaporator and other components $1400. None of which I really mind since the age of the car. My son drives it now 30,000 miles/year.
    Had a 2004 745i. Loved it, lost it due to corp. reorg. Just bought a 2001 740iL w Spt Wheels. Very nice car. Has 55,000 miles, I purchased the EZ Cap to run till 2010 plus another 20,000 miles for $2000. I now drive about 3-4k miles a year, so I believe I got good value for the extended warranty. I purchased the car for $28k w 55k miles - again, I believe a good value. Some minor signs of wear on the driver front seats. Wondering if I can find a OEM heated seat as replacement or if too expensive is it realistic to have a leather shop re dye (Black)?

    Anyone have experience with re working leather upholstery on these cars?

    thanks
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Thanks for that interesting report on your 7s.

    What do you mean "reworking" the leather? You mean revitalizing or replacing?

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  • 92735i92735i Posts: 25
    Revitalizing.

    I did some checking around. Apparently there are specialty shops that recondition worn leather seats. They can clean, strip, and re dye to original color, fix cigarette burns, cracking etc.

    One shop said that most of the time, it is staining that has embedded into the grain. Deep cleaning and a re dye typically is sufficient to restore if no tears.

    Planning on doing it. Will let everyone know the result.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Dyeing can work but they had BETTER know what they are doing, and it won't work on badly stained leather because the dye won't take evenly. But sometimes it looks pretty good. You can always tell a re-dye though.

    Still probably a lot cheaper than the alternative....gulp.

    BTW it takes 5 cows to cover a car like that. I read that somewhere :)

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  • mevandemevande Posts: 190
    BMW 740i(and il) are hot items. Most BMW dealers that get a 740i or il see them sell in a day or two. I think the reasons are many are not happy with the 2002+ styling and the "I Drive", hence 1998-2001's are selling at a premium. I think the Carmax deal sounds good!
  • My '98 740i has 65,000 miles on it. Recently it started losing power, and it is getting worse. If I try to accelerate even moderately, the engine sounds strained, and then I find myself running on what must be 5 or 6 cylinders. That continues until I turn the engine off. When I start it up again everything is smooth - until the next acceleration or hill.

    Does anyone have an idea of what might be causing this? Thanks!
  • lobdelllobdell Posts: 9
    I have a 2001 740il with 49k miles and still under factory warranty. I was feeling good until the radiator and water pump had to be replaced under factory warranty a week ago. Now I am considering an extended warranty. I am reading the fine print and a lot of things are being excluded. The warranty has a total maximum of $10k. The cost of the warranty is between $3k and $4k depending on company. I am strongly considering not buying the warranty and taking the risk. I know it is simply an insurance policy, and most consumer advocates advise against extended warranties in general. We are maintaining the car and driving it carefully. I have to decide before I reach 50K miles which will occur in the next week or so. The car is in excellent condition and has been checked by the BMW dealer and independent garage, and no problems can be found. Any comments?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    This sounds like an ignition break-down of some sort, (miss under load is sort of classic ignition symptom) but you've have to pull codes to learn more I think.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,320
    Well you can see where the insurance company is hedging their bets on this car, by exclusions and by putting a cap on it. This "warranty" sounds crummy. Shop around for something of more value. $10K would barely cover an engine overhaul.

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  • joshcjoshc Posts: 2
    I am in the process of buying a 1999 740IL with 104,147 on the dash. car needs breaks rotors, heater core, rear window regulators. is the car worth 10,000? I am very skeptical because of how expensive maintainence is on these vehicles. please give me some advice. i have heard so many different oppinions from a lot of people but would like to hear from an expert.

    Josh! HELP
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