BMW 330Ci Maintenance

Picked up the BMW the other morning for service as the owner had complained about having an burning smell in the cabin at stop lights. Up on the lift to check it out!

Found the leak was pouring out of the valve cover gasket at the front of the motor, so a replacement was needed! But, on the way to the shop, I noticed the car was not getting up to operating temperature. Figured likely a stuck thremostat.

Pulling apart the top of the motor to replace the gasket.

Here is a pretty good example of a car that has maintained 15k mile oil change intervals.

As you can see, the sludge buildup is ridiculous. While there have been incredible improvements in oil technology that allow longer change intervals, the 15k mile oil change interval oddly enough came about around the time dealerships were offering free maintenance for the first 50k miles or so on new vehicles. Up the intervals, less money out of the dealer pocket for maintenance. Coincidence? I’ll let you decide that for yourself. Once it is out of warranty they expect you to buy a new car anyway, so who cares if the car only goes 100k miles before needing a new motor. Just some food for thought.

Then I went after the thermostat, while in there, I noticed some slight seeping from the radiator end tank, so time to replace the entire cooling system. Since most of these parts like to fuse themselves together (hoses, radiators, etc), I highly recommend replacing EVERYTHING on the front of the motor in regards to cooling. The plastic gets pretty brittle over time, and likely will not come apart without stress cracking, etc.

New vs. Old.

New waterpump

And radiator, shroud, etc.

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