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BMW 3-Series Maintenance and Repair

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Comments

  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    edited March 2010
    I've just spoken to Roberto. It's probably best if you speak to him directly as well so you can understand the difference between BMW's detail job and what Roberto does and the products he uses. His basic detail, interior and exterior, with similar (but likely better) products as BMW is $195.

    For my 335xi, I include a 2 coat PH-balanced leather treatment for the interior leather and a Collinite paste wax treatment on top of the basic detail job. The Collinite wax job is an extra hour and a half of labor. Depending on the car, the complete job may run between $300-$375, but again, it's best to speak to Roberto yourself. He also can do an Aquapel window treatment that, although I haven't done it before, I may include this time to gauge the value vs. cost.

    As far as I'm concerned, it's definitely worth the price. For the nearly $50K for the vehicle, it's worth 1.4% per year (2x/year) to keep it in as pristine condition as possible.

    For whatever it's worth, I asked about detailing one a recent visit to my BMW dealership. (They invited customers for a free undercarriage inspection.) When I mentioned Express Car Detailing, even the BMW service tech suggested that a dedicated shop like Express would invariably do a better job than the outsourced BMW detail service.
  • jayvisjayvis Posts: 76
    I'm sure that I can't be the only one out there wondering why you guys don't consider doing your own detail work. I've found that part of the joy of owning one of these fine cars is time spent keeping them looking fine.
  • If it's still warranty then the service is free. The computer should indicate what needs to be changed (either oil, brake fluid, brake pads if they are worn, micro-filter). Did you get a service history of the car?
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    I would normally agree but I tried to clean bird poo off my car and I scratched the finish. That never happened on any of the Acuras i've owned so now I'm kind of paranoid about doing anything but a laser wash.
  • jayvisjayvis Posts: 76
    edited March 2010
    That's pretty typical of soft BMW paint. A guy I know who does clear mask installs says BMW paint is the most fragile of all luxury makes. It'll chip and scratch if you look at it wrong.
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    I wash my car in the non-winter months in my driveway. I have a pressure washer, a couple of fine wool mitts for the soap, several generic versions of Sham-WOWS! (they actually work!) and I enjoy doing the job. What I don't have is a power buffer, the really good cleaning, waxing, etc products or the patience to do a job like the professional detailers.

    You could probably find a good large flat rock in a nearby stream and clean your Armani suits, too, but the local dry cleaners does a much better job in a lot less time than it would take otherwise. It's worth it a couple of times a year.

    Ironically, Roberto, whom I've mentioned a few times in this thread, claims he likes working on BMWs because of the quality of the paint job.

    On a slightly different note, my dealer says that all 335i's since '08 come standard with the oil cooler. Can anyone corroborate this statement? I had one installed in Spring '08 at dealer expense on my '07 335xi, and I'm considering replacing it with the '11. I don't want to trade and get less than I already have.

    Thanks.
  • pandi13pandi13 Posts: 5
    No service history, only a Carfax report. Dealer said they got the car from an auction.
    Could I request from BMW service dept to pull the service record of my car?
    Thanks.
  • pandi13pandi13 Posts: 5
    I noticed that my speedometer is always +5 mph than actual speed (based on 3 GPS units used to verify speed). Told this to a BMW service advisor and he said that BMW's tolerance is 10mph, is this true? He also claimed that GPS speed is not really accurate.
    Our Toyota and Honda have their speedometer spot on with our GPS units.
    Can somebody confirm if the "within 10mph" tolerance is really true for BMW...Wouldn't BMW have a better precision req for their cars?
    thanks.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Your service advisor has no idea what he's talking about.

    First, a 10 mph error in a speedometer is so far off the mark it's laughable.

    Did you change tire sizes? A 5 mph error at 50 mph could be caused by a tire that was 10% difference in diameter/circumference, but that's a pretty bug difference.

    Second, any decent GPS unit will have speed accuracies in the fractions of mph. How close did the 3 GPS units you try track? Also, you basically calibrated your GPS units (or vice-versa) against the speedos in your Honda and Toyota. So you have 4-5 speed measuring devices, all of which match each other pretty closely, I guess, and then you have the outlier speedo in your BMW.
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    http://townhall-talk.edmunds.com/WebX/.f18346e/19

    Well documented discrepency, I have confirmed through 3 different methods that my speedo is off by 4 mph at highway cruising speeds.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,536
    All six of my past BMW as well as the three I currently(a 1975 2002, a 1995 318ti, and a 2004 X3 2.5) own have had speedometers that are 4-5 mph optimistic. Big deal.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • pandi13pandi13 Posts: 5
    1. Still using orig spec tires: 205/55R16 RTFs.
    2. GPS units are dead on at 40, 50, 60 mph cruising speeds on our Honda CRV and Toyota Camry.
    Will try to get a clearer answer from the BMW service advisor next time.
    Thanks.
  • pandi13pandi13 Posts: 5
    The reason I'm asking is because I got a pre-owned car (also my first BMW), just inspecting everything and trying to get it fixed before the warranty expires. If it's standard for BMW to have +5mph on their speedometers then I'm ok with it.
    :)
  • I too have experienced the same difference. My 2007 328i was about 4 mph different than my Garmin GPS with my BMW reading higher than my GPS.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,148
    Both of my BMWs were a tad optimistic on the speedometer, however, the odometers were dead-on-balls-accurate. ;)

    Best regards,
    Shipo
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    I'm sticking with my theory that it is to keep the speeding ticket count down. ;)
  • jlbljlbl Posts: 1,333
    Or to avoid BMW being suited because of driver speeding tickets. :)

    Regards,
    Jose
  • nkeennkeen SE PennaPosts: 313
    edited March 2010
    I have a 2006 325i sedan, manual, ZSP with 35K miles. The car is just now going out of warranty. What kind of experience have people had with out-of-warranty cars and how have the maintenance costs been? (In-warranty fixes to mine have been a thermostat that was jammed open and a valve leak.) I am debating whether to keep the car or trade it for a 2011 Mustang GT with the 5.0 Coyote engine.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Well the Mustang will be fun but you're going to be in for a bit of a shock regarding fit and finish and build quality.

    As for the out of warranty question, my opinion is that the only way to own a German car out of warranty is to provide a very, and I mean *very* high degree of periodic maintenance, preventative maintenance, and inspection.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,536
    Are you a BMW CCA member? Have you found a good independent BMW tech? That's a good start toward reduced maintenance costs. My two late model BMWs have not required anything other than scheduled maintenance(save brakes and tires) from 50,000-100,000 miles. The maintenance and repair costs have averaged @5 cents per mile for both vehicles.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • jamiem4jamiem4 Posts: 23
    Hi-I was wondering how you locate a BMW CCA technician? We are storing our deployed son's 2002 BMW 328i and it likely will need a new clutch. The estimate from the dealership was almost $2K for that work and replacement of the Guibo joint. They wanted over $660 for the replacement of a slightly leaking valve cover gasket. I'd like to get the items fixed for when our son returns but I don't know where to take the car here in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. Many thanks for anyone who can help! Jamie
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,536
    BMW CCA doesn't officially endorse technicians or shops, although most local members will be glad to recommend specific shops. You can also find a tech here: http://www.bimrs.org/2008MapPage.html

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • I found my indie shop from here http://www.bimmershops.com
  • uncletouncleto Posts: 45
    Hi! just did some checking on my front wheels if theres any play on them by doing the 3' oclock, 9 oclock. there is movement in the 9' oclock position atleast i could say 1/2 inch. both wheels on the same position. Im wondering if this is a sign of a wornout outer ball joint of the control arm, or the tie rod. Is there suppose to be a play on the wheels... or this is normal? Thanks, for any imput.
  • uncletouncleto Posts: 45
    Correction: The movement was only 1/4 of an inch. is this normal for the front wheels to have this play. I thought there shouldnt be any movement at all period. Thanks again for any imputs from you guys.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Check your tie rod end - may have some play there.

    Also, make sure you are not inadvertently moving the whole steering rack with the 3 oclock/9 oclock movement.

    1/4 inch is still way to much play, and is not normal.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    edited April 2010
    You have something going on there, but not a ball joint. You can't test a ball joint that way. I mean, you *may* have a bad ball joint but you didnt find it in that manner.
  • uncletouncleto Posts: 45
    Many Thanks again for your inputs. im just trying to get some 2nd opinion on this matter. i went to an independent mech. before and ask to check for my steering & supension. He found out that my bushings and ball joints are worn and loose. but never mentioned the tie rods. im just in the process of shopping around for the reasonable price. the Indie shop quoted me around $1300, 4 hrs of labor incl. i may have to call the dealership and ask for a quote. i may also need to have it aligned after wards, hoping all the steering components are in order. Will let you know guys whats my next move.
  • astortxastortx Posts: 3
    I have just replaced CCV and pipes,hoping to stop oil consumption.Now the car gives me P1345, P1348 and P1350 codes.I did not opened the spark park-coil cover at all.Checked all the clamps,double checked, cleared the codes, but still coming back.Any idea why it is happening?
    Thanks in advance
  • astortxastortx Posts: 3
    Never mind, the codes was gone overnight
  • sunilbsunilb Posts: 407
    Mike Miller wrote a thorough and informative buying guide for the E46 and E90 in the latest issue of Bimmer magazine. I was surprised to learn about BMW's decision to limit information that they share with technicians on the E90... he indicated that the E90 will actually be more expensive to maintain over the longer term (more complex + less information from BMW).
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    So my E90 is 6 mos old w/ 12.5k miles on it and I have my first "warranty work" pending. :mad:

    1)There is a "cracking" sound coming from the stereo speakers that sounds almost like a watch ticking. Hind sight being 20/20, i think this cracking has been going on since day one but has gotten progressively louder so that now I can't stand it.
    2) The SOS light comes on now when I start the car and the "exclamation" symbol stays on.
    3) The radio will just cut out and I have to turn it on again w/ the knob.

    Are all these problems connected? Who knows!
    It'll be in the shop next monday. :(
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    UPDATE:

    BMW has had my car for a day and a half now and still doesn't know what's wrong w/ it. Stay tuned, that is all.
  • lwyselwyse Posts: 1
    I have a 2003 BWM 330 that recently overheated for no apparent reason. I had added water to it 2 days prior to the overheating incident. My mechanic told me that the ext warranty company needed my authorization to cover costs to tear it down, in case it wasn't covered by them. He also warned me that they may try to say it was caused by "negligence" on my part so they can avoid paying the claim. The only problem he found so far is a crack in the resorvour (which IS a covered part). Has anyone heard of overheating problems and causes? I couldn't find anything on TSB.gov (technical service bulletins). H E L P!!
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,536
    Well, you shouldn't have to add any coolant at all. There was obviously a leak somewhere. How did you know it was low on coolant? Did the car overheat in traffic or at highway speeds? Was the system bled in the correct fashion? Is the cooling fan operating properly? How about the t-stat? Cars simply don't overheat "for no reason"...

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    Well this is embarrassing but I'll post it anyway as a teaching point. My car had the above symptoms for a while, well it turns out the guy who installed my laser jammers damaged the main "bus" cable which controls many of the cars functions. After working on it for many hours, BMW replaced the cable and only charged me $120. I think I'll bring them coffee and donuts tomorrow. :blush:
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    This is interesting. My auto detailer in Natick, MA also installs alarm systems, stereos, radar systems, etc. When I asked him about installing a better alarm system in my 2011 335i instead of the factory alarm system, he told me that he doesn't touch most European brands especially BMWs as the electrical/inter-component system uses fiber optics and can easily be damaged by installers unfamiliar with the complexities and nuances of the system. The recommendation came straight from his alarm system regional sales representative. You should consider yourself lucky that BMW even did the work let alone charge you far more for the repair.

    One interesting comment that he related is that an alarm system, on the average, only delays the thief stealing your car by 3 minutes and doesn't deter anyone from a "smash 'n' grab". With the engine immobilizer in the Bimmers, (theoretically at least) the would-be thief would have to tow, drag or put the vehicle on a flatbed truck.
  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    Yeah, I looked into getting a Viper car alarm at Best Buy and was told by the Tech that they don't do BMW's.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 13,695
    Are simply a waste of money. If someone really wants your car, they're going to take it. When's the last time you called the cops when you were walking down the street or to your car in the mall pkg lot and heard a car alarm going off?

    Never?

    Exactly!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2017 Pilot Touring AWD, 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport 4WD

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 13,695
    I know you're getting rid of your 335xi ('08?) for a new '11 335xi (I hate the X drive badges on the cars & much prefer the xi monkier). How come you are ditching your current 335xi? How many miles are on it? What are they offering you on the trade? I know you keep your car in immaculate shape.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2017 Pilot Touring AWD, 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport 4WD

  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    edited May 2010
    Well, now you're asking me to second-guess myself as to why I would trade-in a perfectly fun fully paid-off 2007 335xi with ~28,500 miles and take on a new payment of a couple hundred a month!

    Now that you mention it...

    It started when I went in for routine service for the 30,000 mile check, basically just an oil change and they gave me new wiper blades. It was about 7:15 AM on a weekday and I wasn't properly caffeinated! I was sitting having a double cap when someone in a loosened tie came up to the espresso bar (this is a classy joint! - BMW of Sudbury, MA). He turned out to be the dealership GM. I asked what was new in a turbo and described my car. He worked up some numbers that didn't immediately depress me. I went away but stayed in touch. (Isn't that how it invariably gets you into trouble with cars and women?!) Within a couple of weeks of e-mails, he put me in touch with a sales rep who, surprisingly, was quite pleasant.

    I had been all over Edmunds and the BMW site, but could find no information on 2011s and they weren't taking orders for 2010s in Germany.

    I figured that my 4 years free service would be up in August '11, and although it is still 15 months away, I decided that to wait might reduce the trade-in value more than I was willing to accept and didn't want to be in a bind regarding buying an extended protection plan (ripoff? comments?) or having no warranty. I decided I liked the idea of having no maintenance expenses despite a relatively small car payment ($200-250/month with any luck).

    I figured on $26,000 trade-in value based on the high end of KBB and Edmunds. I was offered $25,000 and asked for, and received, a middle ground offer of $25,500. With the new ride priced at invoice less $1,840 Option Credit plus $750 dealer profit and the chorus of miscellaneous charges like TAX, it came out under invoice, as they say, OTD.

    This is what I have now:

    2007 335xi, manual naturally
    Sparkling Graphite Metallic
    Grey Leather
    Premium
    Sport
    Cold Weather
    Logic 7 Stereo (it was standard back then (*sigh*))
    Park Distance Control (rear only)

    This is what I'm getting:

    2011 335i xDrive
    6 sp MANUAL. I can't believe anyone would pay EXTRA for an automatic!
    Tasmin Green Metallic (I read a comment that driving these days is like watching a B&W movie. I figured I'd add a little color. Besides, the bright red LEDs look cool against the green.)
    Oyster & Black Leather
    Premium
    Sport (No M - the front looks like someone punched out the front teeth of the car)
    Cold Weather
    Harman Kardon Surround (the Owner's Circle web site doesn't show it as included but the GM swears it will have it - it better be there!)
    Satellite Radio
    Park Distance Control (rear AND front, this time)
    Heated seats (Included)
    Heated Steering Wheel (Included - that should be cool!)
    Fold down rear seats
    Dark Burl Walnut wood trim
    BMW Assist

    HD Radio is standard now (even on *ugh* Fords)

    I think that's it. The car is at the Vehicle Prep Center in New Jersey and hopefully will be here by the weekend. That may be optimistic. The sad thing is that the first thing the car saw when the Prep Center wiped the wax out of its headlights was NEWARK!!

    As for the xDrive stick-on, it sucks. I posted a few weeks ago that someone should tell BMW that it makes the car look like a Toyota, and these days, that is NOT a good thing! I say let it be a 335i, period. Let the guy in the other lane in a mid-winter snowstorm wonder why you're leaving him spinning when the light turns green! I feel no shame whatsoever when Lamborghini is putting 700 hp at all four corners in the new Jota. 0-100 km/hr in 3 seconds???

    YEAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

    Does this help?!
  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    Let us know if the new turbo is better than the old...
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 13,695
    Yeah - thanks for the deatiled info. great story btw. When you get your '11, make sure you check their website to see what they're asking for the car. My guess is they'll ask $32,500 for it.

    Your info helps me because I am a BMW nut. We currently lease a 2007 X3 (Montego Blue/Black Leatherette) which goes back at the end of July. When we return the X3, our stable will consist of a 2010 Acura TSX tech (black/black/sulushbox) which will become my wife's daily driver/family hauler & my 2001 Honda Prelude Type SH (Milano Red/Black/5-speed stick/120K+ miles). We are actually going to be New Englanders soon (Trying to buy a house in Stamford, CT). We're also going to be BMWless. Once the finances clear up, I'm going to start searching for a new ride for myself. Our new home will bring me further away from my job & by the end of next year, my Prelude will have close to 140K miles on it.

    I've always wanted a 3 series. I can convince myself 7 ways from Sunday that they are too expensive & too small, but everytime I get in one it is like a magical journey. I love BMWs so much that I'd actually consider a CPO car when the time is right. The fuel pump problems & turbo failures really scare me away from the 335, although the acclereration is simply intoxicating. The 328i is a great car too, but their asking prices aren't that much lower than the 335 (used).

    I'm also going to check out the Infiniti G37S Sedan & an FX 35 Sport (only automatic though).

    What you got for ur trade will help me gauge what to offer for a CPO 3 series. Thanks again!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2017 Pilot Touring AWD, 2019 Tacoma TRD Sport 4WD

  • upstatedocupstatedoc Posts: 710
    "Car alarms ........... Are simply a waste of money"

    Maybe in the city.... ;)

    I know I take a look around if I hear a car alarm just to make sure there's no funny business.
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    I will definitely update on the N55 vs N54. I'm very curious about the twin scroll vs twin turbo, and what diffference, if any, Valvetronic makes as well.

    The car still has the OEM ContiProContact all-season SSRs. I estimate that they have another 7-10,000 miles of tread left. They are all wearing absolutely evenly, too. I have had no trouble with them at all. I don't know what I'm going to get with the new ride. The dealership GM swears that the Bridgestone issues are a thing of the past. The new G3 SSRs should be available, but I'm wary at this point. I should find out in a day of two. Delivery date is scheduled for tomorrow.
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    My tee time is 80 minutes from now, so I have to slip out of work soon, but I just wanted to wish you good luck with all you have going on. I hope the house purchase goes smoothly! I'll post a picture of the new car when it's been properly detailed. The Shadowline trim should look really good with the window tinting I plan to do.

    By the way, the only issue I had with my '07 was a noisy right front wheel bearing that was replaced in the first year. I never had any fuel pump, starter, limp home, turbo or overheating issues at any time and in any weather, sub zero or >100 degrees.

    Maybe I was lucky, but I always treated the car well, including a gentle pat on the dashboard after a close call. I believe that if you take care of the car, it appreciates it and will return the favor!

    Ever seen the movie "Christine"? ;)
  • Firebird_EOUFirebird_EOU Posts: 250
    edited May 2010
    I cannot find any availability info on G3 SSRs from Bridgestone in 2010. They announced it last year, but then haven't heard anything since.
  • xeyexeye Posts: 168
    I have also searched high & low for definitive information from Bridgestone or anyone else including the dealer and no one has anything to say about the G3's. That really concerns me as I have to make a decision whether I raise a big stink if my new 2011 335i xDrive comes shod with these tires. It appears as if Bridgestone is staying under the radar. I did, actually, read a couple of mag reviews that say the G3's are the best thing since the Model T. Do they come as OEM on the cars? Who knows? Is there a way to identify the tire as a G3? Who knows?

    I don't trust any tire company that doesn't represent themselves; certainly not with this kind of investment, speed, handling, etc.
  • sunilbsunilb Posts: 407
    Xeye... are you saying that the 2011s are going for less than invoice?? Edmunds only indicates the special financing offer, but no mention of rebates on the 2011s.

    Appreciate any info you can share.
  • ursamajorursamajor Posts: 127
    The car arrived in six weeks, intended to replace the defective 2008 335xi which had 16680 urban miles on it when it was repurchased last week. Two failed fuel pumps, failed electronics (requiring days in the shop, during which I was given a 2010 328i loaner), battery drain at 8000 miles, etc,- BMW N.A. was so compliant and the settlement so generous that I immediately ordered a non-turbo xi Tasman Green, beige leather, lots of good equipment. The 2010 models could no longer be ordered, so I went for the 2011 despite the absence of incentives, all of which were focused upon the 2010. Lease rates were very high. I attenuated the surrender of the vehicle until May 3rd, when new incentives and lease rates were hopefully going to make the lease attractive. The best offer I received from Pacific in Glendale, CA was invoice, but there were no incentives and the lease money factor actually increased from .0022 to .0033. Bottom line, my payment was going to be only $ 20 less/mo. than my previous "well-equipped" 2008 335xi which I also had factory-built. Not much to justify a straight-six with uninspiring acceleration for the same price, to a lessee. I also think that without incentives, the cost to a purchaser for a 328 is a poor value.

    I am now driving a new Audi A4 Quattro which I would say is quicker than the 328, has conventional tires, not those damn run-flats, and considerably better mileage--of course, it's a 4cyl, but the turbo, although not broken in yet, seems promising. The cap cost was $ 7000 less than the BMW and hard to believe, the a.p.r. of the money factor was .624% (that's about 5/8ths of ONE PERCENT) vs. 5.5% for the BMW. There may be BMWs in my future, but at $ 150/mo. less of a lease payment, slightly lower drive-off, and Quattro with a more docile ride, I'm glad I could make this choice.
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