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BMW 3-Series Maintenance and Repair



  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 10,285
    Alternator output
    Ground cables- at battery and at engine connections MUST be clean
    Load test battery(yes, new batteries can be bad)

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport / 2014 M235i / 1999 Wrangler / 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2016 i3 REX/2009 Cooper Clubman Son's: 2009 328i

  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    My 2006 has 88k now. Lots of highway driving.
  • bimmer4mebimmer4me Posts: 266
    Recently on rare occasions, on initial start ups, I hear tapping noises in the engine. It sounds like a four banger. It only occurred twice in the last two weeks. If I take it to BMW they'll most likely say "can't replicate customers complaint". Should I take it in for documentation purposes in the event it becomes a serious issue after the warranty expires? I have four years left... purchased a CPO.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 10,285
    Almost certainly the hydraulic lifters. BMW should replace them without any hassle.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport / 2014 M235i / 1999 Wrangler / 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2016 i3 REX/2009 Cooper Clubman Son's: 2009 328i

  • bimmer4mebimmer4me Posts: 266
    Thanks, appointment tommorow. I hope I get the 330i as a loaner again...what a blast to drive.
  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    Is pad as effective as thin as it could be but before the brake sensor is triggered/cut?

    Is it necc. to replace the brake sensor with the pads when the sensor hasn't been triggered?
  • luckybellyluckybelly Posts: 15
    Brake Pads are equally effective when new and when old. However, if you are on the race track I would not recommend going with the thin pads. But for 95% of the drivers the pads are equally effective when new and old.
    Regarding the sensors - it is a requirement to replace when the light is triggered on. The reason is when the light is triggered on - the circuit is open. The sensor is a wire the is a loop. When pads touch the brake rotors where the sensor is it breaks the connection. Hope it helps.
  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    I mean do you need to replace the sensor, or can you re-use the sensor, when the light hasn't been triggered on (which means the wire hasn't been breached). Is it much more time consuming for the mechanic to try to save the existing brake pad sensor than it's to use a new one (~$15 each)?
  • luckybellyluckybelly Posts: 15
    Many times when removing the sensor the sensor will break - so its replaced.
    Keep in mind there are total of only two sensors. One in front and one in rear. But there are total of 8 surfaces that should be monitored but BMW in its wisdom chose to monitor only 2.
    To answer your question if the light isn't triggered on its reuseable.
  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    If the brake pad sensor malfunctions (let's say the light doesn't work), does the OEM pad itself produce any traditional noise that tells you it's time to replace the pad prior to rotor being damaged?
  • luckybellyluckybelly Posts: 15
    Nope. It makes a grinding noise occasionally when its metal to metal. But its too late at that time.
    You should replace rotors regardless. When getting any service you should always aske the service person to give you the thickness remaining on the pad. Generally at 30% or less its good to replace the pads and rotors and sensor.
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    Hey guys-
    I'm taking my E90 in for it's first "free" service. I plan on having them check tire wear, break pads, tranny fluid. Is there a differential fluid for the AWD system? Any other areas you can think of?
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168

    You may be a little disappointed by their response to your requests. My guess is they'll take your key fob, stick it in their reader, and let the car tell them what needs changing, and most probably, it will be only the engine oil. They will top off the washer fluid and probably do a visual check of brake fluid.

    My understanding is the differential is sealed and never needs refilling unless there is a diagnosed problem.

    Read the statement of work when they're done and see what they did.

    Who is your dealership?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,749
    The oil service includes a pretty comprehensive checkup... I don't know the answer on differential fluid, but all serviceable fluids are checked.. along with brakes, tires, tire pressure, etc..

    None of those items are due for replacement, unless the tires or brakes are worn (not likely at first service).


    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,328
    Just an update, a few weeks ago Idrove my Mom's '08 328xiA and noticed the car had 49,960 miles on it & asked her if there was anything wrong with the car because her warranty was about to expire. Nothing she says. She comes home the next day with a touch over 50K miles and tells me "the service light just came on." W ebrought it in today with a tick over 51K miles on it & the car needed new front pads & rotors to the tune of just under $700.

    With a tick over 51K miles, the car is still as tight as the day she picked it up. The brakes are super strong & the car's handling is simply incredible.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • michele16michele16 Posts: 4
    I have a 2005 BMW 325CI that has approximately 60,000miles on it. My vehicle was covered under the 4 year maintenance warranty but this expired in 2009 and so have had all the past maintenance and repair work at the dealership. The fan clutch and the front lower controller bushings need to be replaced. I have been quoted $463 for the fan clutch repair and $820 for the controller bushings. Is this a reasonable quote? Would it be better for me to take it to our family mechanic or should I stay with the dealership I am familiar with.
    Thank you!
  • Greetings and salutations..
    This is my first post and I apologize for changing the subject or stepping on anyone.
    I recently purchased my first (used) BMW. It is an "01 325i with 152k miles. The original owner did take fantastic care of this vehicle, as is evident in the lack of sun damage (north Texas, 110f in the summer) and the immaculate interior.
    When I purchased this vehicle, the A/C was not cooling. The (German import only) repair shop I used to handle the repairs concluded that the compressor was bad, and the oil filter housing was leaking.
    After the repairs were complete I learn that I was charged over $700 for the compressor (labor additional) and over $100 for the oil filter housing. There were some other minor repairs and services, such as interior trim clips replaced, a foaming (?) engine cleaning, etc.. The final bill was over $1800. The dealership had
    quoted $1600 just for the compressor replacement.
    I later learn that I could purchase a brand new compressor from the same shop for less than $250.
    Did I get taken for a ride? Is this right?

    To top it off, the interior trim clips I was charged for, weren't even installed!
    I'm a bit discouraged.

    Though I must say that this is, perhaps, the best vehicle I have ever owned. (I used to be a devout Honda and Toyota fanatic)

    Thank you in advance for any information!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    I rather doubt you'd find a NEW one for $250, and certainly not a German one. You would probably find a remanufactured one for $300 or so, and maybe even a new Japanese one for $350--$400.

    You know what they say---you get what you pay for. Besides, if you want the shop to warranty their work, you have to buy their parts as a rule---you can't bring your own, because if you do and they fail, no shop is going to honor either parts or labor.

    Shop the best repair shop, not the best price, and you'll be happier with your BMW in my opinion.

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

  • Thanks for your reply, Mr.Shiftright.

    That has been my mentality throughout this. They seem to be a great shop, and money aside, I am thrilled with their work.
    Regarding the cost of the compressor, perhaps I should clarify; $234. was the quoted purchase price for a brand-new, BMW OEM, compressor, if purchased through their parts counter, and $711 plus labor (roughly another $400), if purchased through their repair shop, at the same business. Are they expecting the compressor they installed to fail at least two times, and built the price into their parts cost?
    I am more confused than anything, what justifies a $500 increase in the price?
    A lifelong friend, and BMW enthusiast as long as I've known him, also uses this same business for many of his BMW parts, and is just as puzzled.
    Maybe I am being picky, but $500 is $500!
    And again, even with over 150k on this car it feels, drives, and rides like brand new. I am more than thrilled. And I look forward to using this forum as a sounding board, and sharing what I learn along the way!

    Thank you!!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,595
    Interesting....maybe you need to go back to clarify, just for your own peace of mind---it doesn't seem, on the face of it, to make any sense.

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

  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250

    $770 is the estimated cost for compressor based on $50 per hour.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 10,285
    That dealer is trying to hose you. You can get an OEM quality fan clutch for $100, and it takes less than an hour to install it. As for the lower control arm bushings, you can get a pair of heavy duty bushings for $90- so they are charging an insane price for labor.
    I agree with Firebird; find a good indie shop.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport / 2014 M235i / 1999 Wrangler / 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2016 i3 REX/2009 Cooper Clubman Son's: 2009 328i

  • This is the ride my women wants. Any free one around here?

  • jimbresjimbres Posts: 2,025
    Are you aware that you're replying to a 9+ year old post?
  • dan3434dan3434 Posts: 9
    I have a 2007 BMW 335i...occasionally I get an annoying squeaking sound when I hit a bump that seems to be coming from the dashboard. It persists every time I drive over uneven roads, but will sometimes go away without explanation. It sounds like a bird chirping. I took it to the dealer, but with the mechanic in the car could not duplicate the problem. As soon as I got near my house (quite a distance from the dealer), the noise started again. Anyone else have this issue? Any idea what it could be?
  • dan3434dan3434 Posts: 9
    No I wasn't...thanks. Will re-post in the right spot.
  • knokoutknokout Posts: 1
    edited June 2010
    I have a 2003 330 xi - love it! Last summer, the AC started to whine and seemed to put some drag on the engine. This summer it is still making the same noise and doesn't seem to cool as well. Also the driver's side is cooler than the passenger side. Any suggestions? Low freon or fried compressor?
  • fomentarfomentar Posts: 49
    I also have '03 330Xi...last year on first 'hot' day, A/C blew warm air...ended up recharging system with 'freon'. Service department suggested 'freon' route as cheaper alternative, to their credit...has been fine since.
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