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BMW M3 Maintenance and Repair

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Comments

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    Thank you so much. How about plugs and belts? Would you replace the water pump at this point?
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    How about plugs and belts?

    The plugs get changed at the Inspection II. If the belts have never been changed I'd do it now. Also check the belt idler and tensioner pulleys. If any of them are noisy or wobbly they need to be replaced.

    Would you replace the water pump at this point?

    In my experience the lifespan of BMW six cylinder water pumps is 60000-100000 miles. It couldn't hurt to change it, it's a fairly simple procedure. Some vendors are selling a replacement pump which is supposedly much more efficient and durable, but the long-term data isn't in yet. It's expensive- around $195 as compared with $70-$80 for an OEM pump.
    I'd also think about replacing the radiator; the OEM units have a bad habit of failing at the most inconvenient times. If you plan on keeping the car I'd recommend installing Zionsville Autosport's Alloy Radiator with Hi-Po Kit.

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    Thank you so much-Roadburner. I will try not to ask too much more. I don't live close to a BMW dealer, so have not done the scheduled maintenance. What plugs do you recommend? Anything else you can think of? I do intend to hang on to this car for years yet.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    I will try not to ask too much more

    Ask away, I'm happy to help.

    What plugs do you recommend?

    The BMW ETK(parts CD) calls for either a Bosch F7 LDCR or a NGK BKR 6 EK.

    Anything else you can think of?

    You might want to pick up the E36 Bentley service manual- on either paper or CD. You should also check out this E36 DIY page.

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    You have given me a wealth of valuable advice. I am struggling a little with replacing the radiator, but everything else sounds like reasonable insurance that my car will not suddenly have a disaster while traveling.
  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    95 M3-83,000 miles. Should the timing chains be replaced at some point? How about a 92 degree thermostat? When replacing the belts, should the pulleys and tensioners be replaced? Thank you very much-whitem3 (Steve)
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    Should the timing chains be replaced at some point?

    Probably not for at least 150K more miles.
    When replacing the belts, should the pulleys and tensioners be replaced?

    It wouldn't hurt to replace the tensioner/idler pulleys; they usually begin to fail in the 100K-130K range. If one does let go it can be a real pain- ask me how I know...

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

  • bornoborno Posts: 77
    Have 01 M3cic w/49K, being doing oil changes myself, and had dealer change coolant and break fluid recently, what else should be done now, or in near future...thanks in advance!, breaks have minor occasional squeak, but no warning lights??

    PS. what an amazing car
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    what else should be done now, or in near future

    Valve clearances should be checked at every Inspection I and II. I'd also change the fuel filter at every Inspection II.

    breaks have minor occasional squeak

    That's not too unusual. Try braking harder and see if the noise goes away.

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    I found a few more things to bother you about. I have spent enough for now-following almost all of your suggestions. BUT-down the road I was wondering about other issues like shocks, struts, u-joints, front wheel bearings. What else will be failing between 83,00 and 100,000 miles? AND-what exactly are you?-a mechanic, an enthusiast, a racer-what? You don't have to answer, of course. Thanks again-Steve
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    I was wondering about other issues like shocks, struts, u-joints, front wheel bearings.

    Shocks, struts, and wheel bearings often last over 100,000 miles. U joints rarely fail on a stock M3, but I would inspect the driveshaft center bearing and guibo at every oil change. If you start hearing a thumping noise from the rear of the car it usually means that the rear shock mounts(RSMs) are toast. There are lots of replacement options but I prefer the Meyle HD RSM which can be found at UUC Motorwerks.

    AND-what exactly are you?-a mechanic, an enthusiast, a racer-what?

    I'm just an enthusiast/home mechanic who has owned and wrenched on BMWs since 1983.

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    Wow! You are just FULL of pearls-as long as I ask the right questions! What have I forgotten to ask? What do you drive now? Never even thought about RSMs!
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    What have I forgotten to ask?

    Well, this is a helpful document.

    What do you drive now?

    1995 318ti Club Sport(original owner)
    2004 X3 2.5(wife's car)
    1999 Wrangler Sahara
    1996 Triumph Speed Triple(when I want to go REALLY fast)

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    What's a Speed Triple? I spent the day on my BMW K1200 LTC.
  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    I looked it up-WOW! What a bike!!! Steve
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    Thanks! There are a few pictures of mine on my CarSpace Page.
    I looked at several Beemers and just missed out buying a really nice K75S, but I'm glad I bought the S3. With Triumphs, depreciation is your friend... ;)

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

  • ian1stadian1stad Posts: 5
    I have a BMW M3 2003, how do you reset the check engine mileage doo hickey after an oil change... i saw the guy lean into my dashboard at BMW to reset it once when they forgot, but i couldn't see over his shoulder....do you know how
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    do you know how

    1. Key in 0 or off position.

    2. Press and hold odometer button and turn key to 1 or acc. position.

    3. Keep button pressed until any of the following words appear in display: "oil service" or "inspection", with "reset" or "re".

    4. Press and hold button again until "reset" or "re" flash. If there is no "flash", minimum consumption value has not been met.

    5. While display is flashing, press button briefly to reset service interval indicator. After display has shown new interval, the following will appear in display for approx. 2 seconds:"END SIA"

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

  • pm4pm4 Posts: 1
    hey,

    you can buy a tool for this from www.bavauto.com for around $70 .
    I am new at this site . I have an 2003 m3 convertible. No problems to speak of...my fingers are crossed.

    good luck,
    phil
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    you can buy a tool for this from www.bavauto.com for around $70 .

    As noted above, an SIA reset tool is NOT needed to reset the SIA on most BMWs from @11/00 forward. However, if you plan to work on your BMW, then I would advise purchasing the appropriate R5/FCX-II from Peake Research, which will allow you to read most BMW fault codes.

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

  • ian1stadian1stad Posts: 5
    Roadrunner: thankyou !!!
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    You're welcome; I'm always glad to help another ///M car enthusiast.

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

  • whitem3whitem3 Posts: 12
    It's whitem3 bothering again. I have now done nearly everything that you suggest. I have not yet replaced the RSMs, but I think I will do that. I "tested" the rear shocks by pushing down vigorously on the rear corners. There was very little give, and it sprung right back. So...I have 2 questions.
    #1- If I replace the RSMs, should I replace the rear shocks at the same time? If so-with what?
    #2-what would be the top 3 performance enhancing changes I could make on my 95 M3? I am not looking for more speed, just even more pleasure driving. Thank you so very much. Steve
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    #1- If I replace the RSMs, should I replace the rear shocks at the same time? If so-with what?

    Well, if the RSMs are quiet I'd probably and leave them alone. As for shocks I'd go with either Bilsteins or Konis.

    #2-what would be the top 3 performance enhancing changes I could make on my 95 M3? I am not looking for more speed, just even more pleasure driving.

    1. Attend several BMW CCA drivers schools- per year.
    2. A Conforti Euro Intake Kit
    3. UUC Sway Bars

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

  • lostit3lostit3 Posts: 2
    I have a question. I just bought a 2005 M3 convertible with very low miles, less than 5,000. I have two more years on the existing warranty. I'm looking at possibly getting an extended warranty. Would any of you recommend this? I thinking of owning for up to 7 years. What's a good policy? Good price?
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    I'm looking at possibly getting an extended warranty. Would any of you recommend this?

    The only extended warranty I'd consider would be the one offered by BMW, which essentially mirrors the CPO warranty. FWIW, I've also been looking at E46 M3s, and if I buy one I'm just going to roll the dice and forgo any additional warranty. The E46 M3 has proven to be quite reliable and I feel comfortable with assuming that risk.

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

  • ian1stadian1stad Posts: 5
    Karen: I bought my wife a 2003 M3 4years ago and just recently had to deal with the whole extended warranty scenario. I tried to buy the BMW extended warranty but as i bought the M3 from a dealership other than BMW they wouldn't sell it to me, they wanted to sell me their extended warranty which as i was sitting in the F&I guys office, I looked up while he was doing his sales pitch and saw a "MERCURY INSURANCE MEDALLION" on his bookshelf...that set bells off in my head. So, I thanked him for his help, by the way he tried to sell me the BMW Maintenance plan for about $1600.00 which is the 2 year oil change maintenance plan BUT as my wife drives maybe 8500 miles a year and the M3 only requires oil change service every 15,000 miles it didn't seem like a very good deal to me, but back to the extended warranty. I called my MERCURY insurance broker and bought the same warranty from Mercury at like 1/2 the price it would have cost me in the dealership...as we all know they mark those items up the wazooo as thats how they make their profit!! Mercury offers to plans..definetly get the DELUXE GOLD PACKAGE...it was 7 years or i think 70 or 80 thousand miles..can't remember exactly BUT AND THIS IS IMPORTANT...the 7 years starts from the M3's INSERVICE PRODUCTION DATE so you have to extremely careful and call the VIN number in and check when that date is....because sometimes you maybe buying a 2005 M3 but the production date could be like November 2004 AND THATS when the extended warranties start. Hope this has been alittle helpful.
    best regards,
    Ian
    (PS Watch "CRIMINAL MINDS" Wednesday Nights at 9pm on CBS....thankyou.)
  • m3momm3mom Posts: 1
    I have a 2004 M3 convertible 6 speed manual transmission. only 11k miles. Last June I drove it for a while when the low gas light was on. After I filled the tank, about 15 min.later while driving on the highway at about 75mph, the service engine light came on and even though I had the gas pedal to the floor the car wouldn't go over 30mph and the engine was very rough sounding. This lasted for a few minutes then everything went back to normal. Since then, no problems until a few days ago when gas gauge showed a little less than 1/4 tank (low gas light NOT on) again driving at about 75 mph. This time car wouldn't go over 30mph and it never went back to normal. I got off the highway and had the car towed to the dealer and so far they've told me they can't re-create the problem and don't know what's wrong. They suggested they would put $10 in the tank and drive it on the highway. I told them to NOT put any more gas in and drive it like I did at 75mph. They are still trying to diagnose the problem. Does anyone have any idea what this problem could be?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,279
    Well gee...symptoms only occur when fuel level is low...you'd think the dealer would check fuel rail pressure and fuel pressure regulator, etc. and the fuel pump itself. Let me get Homer Simpson to go over there and smack 'em one in the forehead....

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

  • bornoborno Posts: 77
    I bought 01 M3cic, 6sp.,27K privately. Car was two years old, when I got it, have had it for four years. Last year had small sensor problem, cost $300, or so. Recently, my top motor died, cost $1400. I was hoping to have won the extended insurance game, but now looks like I'll break even, as long as nothing goes wrong next season. However the car is FANTASTIC, and dependable. Wouldn't worry too much either way, just enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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