Obviously, the engine is what runs your car. Minor issues may cause big problems, so you will want to have the engine checked several times a year by a certified mechanic. Only a mechanic trained in all of the BMW engine types and with a wealth of experience should be trusted with your treasured vehicle.
While your mechanic is checking your engine, have them also check the transmission. The fluid should be flushed at approximately 50,000 miles for best performance. Again, servicing the transmission fluid and filter regularly will keep your car healthy and prevent the tragic (and oh so costly) transmission replacement.
BMWs are known for smooth and responsive steering. As the BMW Corporation itself says, Good steering is what makes a car a precision machine and effortlessly driveable. It has a significant impact on sheer driving pleasure. You don’t want to mess that up! Like the transmission fluid, the steering fluid should be flushed every 50,000 miles for best performance, as it can become contaminated over time.
Getting your brakes inspected on a regular basis is imperative for your safety. This includes having your mechanic check the brake pads. If they are dirty, they can cause squeaking and other issues. Make sure to flush the brake fluid approximately every two years — otherwise, it will become contaminated by absorbing moisture from the atmosphere. This could cause serious brake system failures.
The cooling system, which keeps the temperature of the engine at its optimal operating level, includes the radiator, water pump, water pump belt, hoses, fan, and thermostat. You do not want an overheating engine, a blown head gasket, or damaged cylinder heads; the cost can be astronomical. Instead, have your car maintained by specialists who can help you avoid such catastrophes.
Pay close attention to your tire pressure (for most BMWs, this is 32PSI, but always check the sticker on the inside of the driver’s door). BMW recommends checking the pressure every two weeks or so but at least once a month. Your tires should be rotated every 3,000 – 6,000 miles or every six months. Also, the tires should be replaced every six years, whether or not the tread is worn. You can do the quarter test before that (yes, it used to be the penny test, but apparently, a quarter is more accurate. Plus — inflation…), OR you could trust your experienced mechanic to use specific gauges designed for that job.
How do you keep track of all of this?
Yes, your BMW does demand a little extra in the way of care and maintenance, but, as we have already established, she is worth it. Here are a few tips to help you plan:
You know that minor services can add up over time, so put some money aside for regular maintenance. Regular maintenance means that you will be less likely to need major car repair; it will be worth it in the long run. If you have budgeted ahead for yearly upkeep, you won’t feel the pain in your wallet when it’s time to pay.
Watch for warning signs:
Nip problems in the bud. If your steering wheel is vibrating, trust your qualified mechanic to check your wheel bearings, balance, and rotors. If the entire car is vibrating, it may be time to check your alignment or get new tires. If you see spots of liquid under the car, make an appointment immediately to find out what is leaking. Of course, pay attention to any warning lights. Your mechanic will be able to fix whatever is going on. The main point is — don’t delay!
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