You, your BMW and your alignment
Friday, June 22nd, 2007
It is critical to know that weights must be added to your vehicle for the accuracy of your alignment, (with the exception of some M3’s).
BMW alignment specs are accurate only in a loaded or active suspension condition. In other words “weighted”. An example would be: 150 lbs. both driver/passenger front compartment, 50 lbs. in rear compartment, 50 lbs. in the trunk, and a full tank of gas. Your suspension will then compress to a certain point and the specs become precise.
BMW has no alignment specs for an “unweighted vehicle”. Is your shop performing the correct alignment for your BMW? Yes, it does take more effort, and a little more time, but it …
Tell the truth – it is just easier
Thursday, June 21st, 2007
As you know, your BMW is a complicated machine. Occasionally, your Service Advisor, at your local shop may have to spend some extra time explaining suggestions or repair procedures. We have found that BMW owners (in most cases) love to talk about their cars. However, always tell us what happened, (or the symptoms your car has experienced). Believe it or not, some people think that if they don’t mention the fact that they drove their car 15 miles in an overheat condition, that maybe we won’t notice and the car will be OK, and the subsequent repair will not be substantial, and life for your BMW will go on as usual. Not usually the case. …
Shiny wheels – where art thou?
Tuesday, June 19th, 2007
Your beautiful BMW is perfectly clean, and you are motoring along happily on your local neighborhood street. You are smiling, enjoying the day and BAM! You have just been hosed by some leafy, dry, dirty, particulate matter that is being blown by (what else), a leaf blower. Ahh, it was so much easier to keep cars clean when the leaves (and the accompanying dirt), was not blown. Maybe, that is causing the increase in tons of particulate matter in the air, that our California Air Resources Board is trying to alleviate. It may not be cars polluting the air, it could be the tons of leaves and dirt being shwoosed around!
So, now, it is time to clean the car again. …
Environmental concerns hijacked? – followup
Wednesday, June 13th, 2007
Regarding my post yesterday: To make it a little bit easier to find one of the most pertinent, ironic statements in the CARB regulation, see page 8, paragraph 1 of the ISOR . CARB is completely disregarding the science! They refused to do their own emission testing to prove that this regulation is needed! The line about “it was too expensive, etc.” is a kicker, considering what they want to force on the taxpayers of our great state.
We run tests and show proof to our customers for our recommendations, all day long. It looks like CARB doesn’t have to be bothered. Go figure!
Environmental concerns hijacked?
Monday, June 11th, 2007
I know everyone is pretty busy these days, but you may want to pay attention to what is happening in our great State of California regarding the California Air Resources Board, aka CARB, and their regulations. As of last week, the Federal efforts to increase the gas mileage standards are being rebuffed by California, and now it’s looking like a power play amongst the politicians, EPA and CARB.
CARB has a budget of about $313 million this year alone, and it’s going to be even higher next year. This gives them plenty of resources to expand their “powers” and regulations. The potential impact on you, the consumer, could be very noticeable and perhaps in ways you did not expect.
If your car …
Buying a pre-owned BMW
Sunday, June 3rd, 2007
OK, I hope I did not sound too harsh relaying the experiences with some window regulators. But, an independent shop that specializes only in BMW will see weaknesses in certain model / years that the manufacturer does not. It is only because we see the cars at a different time in their life, if you will. So, if you are looking to pick up a pre-owned BMW (even their Certified Pre-Owned BMW’s), we can help. In most cases, we can tell you what our experiences have been with a specific year / model. What the strong points have been and common issues (if we have any), that are out there.
We still believe that a good maintenance history (ask for records), …
BMW window regulator – good and bad
Saturday, June 2nd, 2007
Ahhhhh the infamous BMW window regulator! The window regulators on certain BMW models/years are notorious for failing unexpectedly. It’s a plastic wheel component with a wire cable running over a channel (held taut). The cable snaps or more commonly, the plastic wheel breaks. You may be driving along and hear a very loud noise inside the vehicle. Your kid starts crying because, all he/she did “was try to roll down the window” and the sound obviously scared the heck out of everyone!
We have seen clients who have had all replaced, some replaced, none replaced and some replaced more than once by the local dealer! It does not seem to make a difference whether the …
Car inspections show poor results
Friday, June 1st, 2007
We are so glad that the majority of our customers take good care of their beautiful BMW’s! The Car Care Council recently released their findings that showed out of 851 cars that were being inspected in April and October ’06, (in 16 states), 88% of them failed! The most common failures being fluids; engine oil, transmission fluid, coolant, and washer fluid. All routine items, but, doesn’t that make you wonder (what percentage) of safety related items are not being fixed? These cars are on the road with us, next to us, or in front of us or behind us! (Ouch!)
A tow driver installed my battery and broke the dash display
Monday, May 7th, 2007
Your BMW battery is specific to your vehicle and must be installed properly. This requires items shut down and then powered up in a specific sequence. It is not a quick swap out/in as it was in the old days! (not that we would know about those old days!) You can experience serious, costly electrical problems if not installed properly.
The harsh truth is that there are some mechanical shops and body shops working on these cars that should not. We have seen Nav systems ruined by incorrect battery install. We have seen windshields installed and the subsequent failure of the rain sensors.
It takes a substantial investment in time and money to stay current with technology on your BMW. Just because …
Any quick oil/lube chain store can clear my check engine light or codes for me?
Thursday, May 3rd, 2007
Fault codes are exactly that. They indicate problems that could become serious if not diagnosed and repaired. When a car comes in that has had the codes cleared, it now becomes a diagnosis situation that takes longer. This does not save you time or money in the long run. Also, do not think that by just resetting a check engine light you will pass your smog test!