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E36/7 Z3 (1996-2002)
E36/7 Z3 Roadster, Z3 coupe, Z3 M Roadster and Z3 M Coupe talk with our gurus here.

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  #1  
Old 02-08-2013, 12:04 PM
psfz4 psfz4 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2004 2.5i Z4
tire sealants

I have used slime on garden tractor tires, but never had the opportunity to see what sealants do to the inside of the tire. Reading the fine print on the Continental kit answered my first question. They recomend that you rely on the compressors gauge and the sealant will screw up your tire gauge. Does the stuff solidify over time, or can you never use your expensive digital tire gauge on that tire again? To properly repair any puncture the tire should be unmounted and a patch put inside the tire. Does the sealer goop inside interfere with placing a patch inside?

Thanks in advance!
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  #2  
Old 02-08-2013, 03:27 PM
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vintage42 vintage42 is offline
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I carry the Continental kit but have not needed to use it.
http://www.tirerack.com/accessories/detail.jsp?ID=38
You are supposed to have the sealant wiped out of the tire, a plug installed from the inside, and the sensor replaced. I don't think Continental's latex sealant is like Slime.
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  #3  
Old 02-09-2013, 10:05 AM
Bill Terry Bill Terry is offline
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I've only used sealant in small wheels like lawn mowers, trailer's etc. I've been told if you use it on a car tire in an emergency have it professionally repaired ASAP. After putting it in the tire and driving at speed, heats it up of course. But when you stop and it cools down and semi-solidifies, it will make a lump and throws the wheel balance way off and near impossible to re-balance as long as it's in the tire.

Oh, and NO plugs.....

Last edited by Bill Terry; 02-09-2013 at 10:07 AM.
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  #4  
Old 02-09-2013, 12:43 PM
psfz4 psfz4 is offline
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Sounds like my AAA card is the way to go!!!!
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  #5  
Old 02-09-2013, 03:05 PM
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vintage42 vintage42 is offline
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I guess the Z4 has no spare. I have AAA, and imagine their first response would be a pickup truck that would try to plug the puncture, and failing that, that truck would next call a flat bed tow truck. This assumes you are near a town. You may want to carry a Conti Comfort Kit as a backup. It is German made, to their TUV standards.

With my Z3, I would first try to plug the tire and use my Conti kit to inflate it. If that failed I would put on the compact spare and put the flat in the open trunk. If luggage and passenger prevented carrying the flat, I would leave the flat on the car and use the Conti kit to seal and inflate it.
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  #6  
Old 02-09-2013, 07:45 PM
psfz4 psfz4 is offline
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Thanks for the advice. I called the Cincinnati AAA club and found that in the Cincinnati area I have an additional option to having the car towed or put on a flatbed. I can opt to having them take the tire to get it fixed and then return it to me. They said ther is a small charge for this service. Sounds like this might be the way to go for around town driving.
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  #7  
Old 02-10-2013, 06:16 AM
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vintage42 vintage42 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psfz4 View Post
... in the Cincinnati area I have an additional option to having the car towed or put on a flatbed. I can opt to having them take the tire to get it fixed and then return it to me. They said ther is a small charge for this service. Sounds like this might be the way to go for around town driving.
It might take AAA a couple of hours to arrive, get the car up and the tire off, take the tire to a shop, return and put it back on.

For those places and times when you don't want to be waiting that long, it would be good to have the option of trying a quick plug and Conti inflator as a first option. Then if you could not see the puncture or the plug could not seal it, use the Conti sealant as a second option, with AAA as the last option.

In any case, do practice getting the car up on the jack and the tire off and on. The Z4 does not have the complicated spare access of the Z3, but it's good to know where to how to place the jack, how to use the lug wrench, and how to use the hole aligning tool.

I had new tires put on my Z as soon as I got it, then tried to practice using the spare, and found the lug wrench in the tool kit could not get the bolts out. I took the car back to the tire shop, gave them the lug wrench, and had them loosen the bolts with their impact wrench and retighten them using the hand wrench instead of their impact wrench. When I got home I loosened the bolts to make sure I still could, and then retightened them with the hand wrench.

A tip on using the wrench: cut a piece of white PVC pipe to fit over the handle. It increases the diameter which makes it easier on the hand and also eliminates friction on the hand.
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  #8  
Old 02-10-2013, 07:35 AM
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Pinecone Pinecone is offline
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1) Slime and the tire sealants that go in after the puncture are different products. Slime is put into a good tire and supposedly seals any punctures when they happen. The other ones are designed to be put in after the puncture occurs. And the one can solutions typically use a flammable gas as the inflator. NOT good.

2) AAA will do what you ask. Tow or try to repair or take a repair. They will even come and change the tire if you have a spare. It can take a while for them to get to you, it depends on where you are, how busy the service provider is. AAA does not actually do the work, they call the closest available people with whom they have a contract to do the work.

3) If you are handy, the idea of carrying a plug kit is not bad. It can be done without removing the wheel, SOMETIMES. But you still need a compressor to re-inflate.
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  #9  
Old 02-11-2013, 10:24 AM
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SD Z4MR SD Z4MR is offline
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When I replaced my S2000, which had a mini-spare, with the Z4 M Roadster, which doesn't have a spare and doesn't have run-flat tires, I investigated various options to deal with a flat tire situation or other breakdown situations. In the 13 years that I owned the S2000 I had 2-3 flats IIRC.

The Z4 M cars come with the M Mobility Kit which consists of a canister of tire sealant and a 12V tire inflator. There are actually two versions of this kit. The original version is hooked up so that the tire sealant is actually blown into the flat tire by the inflator. In the second version, which is what I keep in the car, the sealant is first squirted into the flat tire and then inflated with the inflator. This would be my last resort in the case of a flat tire. I also bought a tire plug kit which I keep in the car and would be my second to last resort.

I also upgraded my AAA membership to AAA+ which will flat bed the car anywhere I want within 100 miles. This would also be good if I had a mechanical break down for any reason and I could choose to have them tow me to either a local independent or the closest BMW dealer. I consider this my first resort.

In addition, my Liberty Mutual insurance has Road Assistance which is similar to AAA+ and will to me to the "nearest qualified facility regardless of distance". I also re-activated BMW Assist shortly after buying the M Roadster. BMW Assist will tow me to the nearest BMW dealer. BMW Assist doesn't offer all of the safeguards for the M Roadster that are available in later model BMWs like remote unlock, emergency notification and location in case of an accident, so I'm probably not going to renew this one. One way or another I figure that I'm covered.
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  #10  
Old 02-11-2013, 01:20 PM
psfz4 psfz4 is offline
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Wow Tom! I'd say you have flats and breakdowns covered! Tire rack says that 85% of cars that go to the junkyard have never used the spare or jack. I havd had my share of flats over the years, but most were either slow leaks such that I could add air and get to where I wanted for repairs, or flats the occured in my garage overnight. Then I removed the wheel and used a jack stand till I got it fixed. Actual flats on the road have become a fairly rare thing. I think I will rely on AAA, or keep a spare in my garage and call my wife to bring it if I need it close to home. My Z4 is a summer car and not a daily driver, so I don't plan any road trips in it.
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  #11  
Old 02-11-2013, 04:40 PM
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SD Z4MR SD Z4MR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psfz4 View Post
Wow Tom! I'd say you have flats and breakdowns covered! Tire rack says that 85% of cars that go to the junkyard have never used the spare or jack. I havd had my share of flats over the years, but most were either slow leaks such that I could add air and get to where I wanted for repairs, or flats the occured in my garage overnight. Then I removed the wheel and used a jack stand till I got it fixed. Actual flats on the road have become a fairly rare thing. I think I will rely on AAA, or keep a spare in my garage and call my wife to bring it if I need it close to home. My Z4 is a summer car and not a daily driver, so I don't plan any road trips in it.
My wife had never had a flat tire in her life (although she is a bit younger than me, well OK, a lot!) until we did European Delivery on her 335is Coupe, where we discovered a screw embedded into the middle of the tread just after we had gotten off the Autobahn, where we were doing about 140 MPH (yes, she was driving)! My only experience with a puncture in a RFT, so I can't say that they're all bad.

With the two flats that I had on my S2000, in both cases I had driven somewhere and when I returned to the car the tire was flat. In both cases, it was the rear tire, and because of the LSD on the S2000 and the difference in size between the rear tire and the mini-spare, if you had a flat rear tire, you had to jack up the front, put the mini-spare on the front, and then move the front tire to the rear. The mini-spare fit horizontally into a little cubby behind the passenger seat, which naturally wouldn't fit a regular tire. So you had to take out the styrofoam insert in the bottom of the trunk that held the jack and tools, put that into the cubby, and the put the flat tire vertically into the trunk, as this was the only way it would fit. It was quite an process. Fortunately I never had to do that in the rain. If you already had anything in the trunk, like duffle bags for a trip, you'd be screwed.

I did drive the Z4 M Roadster back from the Bay Area to San Diego when I bought it and I did notice that it didn't have the M Mobility Kit, so the dealer gave me the canister of tire sealant. I didn't know any better and thought that was all I needed. After I got home and discovered that it needed the compressor, I contacted the dealer and they sent me an entire new M Mobility Kit.

I do plan on driving up to the BMW CCA Oktoberfest in Monterey in August and I'm going up three days earlier than my wife so I can go to the BMW CCA Festorics the weekend before. I'm taking the Coast Highway and if I get a flat tire between San Luis Obispo and Carmel, I'm pretty much on my own! It would take hours for AAA or anyone else to respond in that area, so I'm going to need to at least be able to drive to the closest place to get a tire repaired or replaced, which could be quite a ways. A mechanical breakdown will be a disaster! I'll probably take an extra hose or two and a serpentine belt. At least on the way back my wife will be following me ( or I may be following her!).
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  #12  
Old 02-12-2013, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
until we did European Delivery on her 335is Coupe, where we discovered a screw embedded into the middle of the tread just after we had gotten off the Autobahn, where we were doing about 140 MPH
HMMMMM, our E46 M3 was supposed to be held under 105 MPH for the first 1200 miles and then under 137 MPH until 3200 miles.

We had one slow leak I patched with a kit in the M Roadster. None in any of the other cars we currently own. Last one was almost 20 years ago, and my wife was taking the Jeep Cherokee to get new tires.
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  #13  
Old 02-12-2013, 11:24 AM
ghpup ghpup is offline
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This is a very interesting thread. Personally, I have now had 3 flats on my ///M. As most of you know, the Z3M did not come with a spare just as alll Z4s and this is by design. While I have the M Mobility kit, it has never been useful since the wound in the tire was too large to seal and the tires would never hold pressure.

My solution, as I've read has been use by others, is to leverage my AAA membership and on the phone, I notify them that I need a flatbed. They always push back, but I insist that is the only solution. Unfortunately for me, each time has been after hours and I've had the car towed to my house and then into the garage until I could find replacements. Once I find replacements, I call AAA again and off we go to the tire shop. While not as convenient as a spare or a quick repair, I accept the situation as something that goes with this particular car. Others may not be as accepting, but this is not my daily driver and I have options.
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  #14  
Old 02-12-2013, 01:45 PM
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SD Z4MR SD Z4MR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinecone View Post
HMMMMM, our E46 M3 was supposed to be held under 105 MPH for the first 1200 miles and then under 137 MPH until 3200 miles.

We had one slow leak I patched with a kit in the M Roadster. None in any of the other cars we currently own. Last one was almost 20 years ago, and my wife was taking the Jeep Cherokee to get new tires.
The break-in for a non-M is different, and for the newer E92 335is is only 1200 miles. We did a clockwise loop starting in Munich, then including, among other places, Salzburg, Fussen, Lauterbrunnen, Lucerne, Stausberg, Stuttgart, Heidelberg, to Trier, where we got the flat tire. We had passed the 1200 mile break-in period the day before IIRC. The worst part was that we were on our way to Cologne, and then the next day was going to be four laps at Nurburgring! Unfortunately, the flat tire happened at 3:40 on a Saturday afternoon, which meant that we were stranded in Trier until Monday morning, missing our Sunday on the Norschleife. Our return flight was Wednesday AM, we had a hotel reservation in Rothenburg for Monday night, and we were meeting friends in Munich on Tuesday night, so there was no way that we could fit it in at that point. I did get to peg the needle at an indicated 160 MPH/260 KMH on the Autobahn between Rothenburg and Munich though! Ironically, the whole trip was actually planned so that we would arrive at Nurburgring after the break-in period.

If you search for my username in the Bimmerfest European Delivery Forum from May 2011, you can see a more detailed post on the flat tire, including pictures.
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  #15  
Old 02-12-2013, 02:00 PM
Z3Papa Z3Papa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinecone View Post
HMMMMM, our E46 M3 was supposed to be held under 105 MPH for the first 1200 miles and then under 137 MPH until 3200 miles.

We had one slow leak I patched with a kit in the M Roadster. None in any of the other cars we currently own. Last one was almost 20 years ago, and my wife was taking the Jeep Cherokee to get new tires.
I always found this curious as every Z that ran through the factory in Spartanburg was run up to 140 in the booth before being checked off. Never understood why it was ok for them but wrong for the owner. As an aside, it is now theorized that modern engines don't need a break in per se but you want to run them through their gears regularly during the first few thousand miles without doing solely highway driving. No sure if I buy that either but whatever.

To the OP -- I go through several sets of tires a year. I'd be given the evil eye from my tire guys if I brought in a tire with sealant used. Not saying they wouldn't change or repair the tire, they'd just give me grief as it some very gross crap to deal with once the tire comes off.
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  #16  
Old 02-12-2013, 02:25 PM
fastgaas fastgaas is offline
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Hi All

Before you flame me for impending doom, hear me out. I've driven BMW motorcycles for 30 years and always carried a plug kit ans tiny motorcycle compressor (had very bad experience with slime, never again). Fixed a flat or two on motorcycles and when I got my Z4 I tossed the small package into the trunk. One day I drove past a construction site and within 5 minutes my dash lit up. Sure enough my right front RFT has two screws and left one in them, little to low tire pressure. 100 miles from home and a long wait to AAA (besides where would they take me?) I figured what the hell, I'll plug them.

Took maybe 45 minutes to insert and do 3 plugs with the tools in the kit and a cheap jack and lug wrench I had. I figured the combination of plug and RFT would get me home and then I could deal with it. I got home fine and guess what? No leaks. I will be replacing the tires soon, but 5000 miles later the plugs have held without issue.

Note: This was not a cheapo plug kit I had, but a professional quality kit for motorcycles. The mushroom plugs was compressed and inserted behind the hole. Also, all the holes were on the tread line and small (they hissed if you touched the screw).

I plan on replacing my RFT with normal tires and plan on keeping my little compressor and plug kit with me (and a AAA card)

Safe travel guys
-fastgaas
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:30 PM
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I had only 1 issue with non-run flats in my '04 Z4. We were on a road trip with a group going from Houston to Z-fest in LA. Got up one morning near Phoenix, and my tire light came on. Stopped at a gas station (I had a compressor in the trunk and plugs). I aired it up, and it was a very slow leak. Carefully drove to Discount Tire. I had bought the tires from a Discount in Houston. We got there before they opened, but 1 half hour after they opened I was on my way, with a patched tire (free!). We caught up with the group later that day. Most flats are small punctures, and we have tire monitors on our Z's. The key is to pay attention and do something when the light goes off. A small air compressor and plugs will handle 90+% of the problems. AAA for the rest....
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  #18  
Old 02-13-2013, 08:29 AM
chickdr chickdr is offline
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Originally Posted by SD Z4MR View Post
[snip] I also re-activated BMW Assist shortly after buying the M Roadster. BMW Assist will tow me to the nearest BMW dealer.[snip]
As an aside- you don't have to pay for BMW Assist in the M Roadster since it doesn't come with a spare tire. You get lifetime BMW Assist(for flat tires only). Many don't know this, but if you call and ask they will confirm. BMW doesn't want you bad mouthing them for giving you no options when you trash a tire and the Mobility kit won't fix the hole...
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:43 AM
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SD Z4MR SD Z4MR is offline
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Originally Posted by chickdr View Post
As an aside- you don't have to pay for BMW Assist in the M Roadster since it doesn't come with a spare tire. You get lifetime BMW Assist (for flat tires only). Many don't know this, but if you call and ask they will confirm. BMW doesn't want you bad mouthing them for giving you no options when you trash a tire and the Mobility kit won't fix the hole...
On it! I'll report back.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:57 AM
chickdr chickdr is offline
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On it! I'll report back.
I realized I said it wrong- it is roadside assistance(which I believe is part of the assist feature). It would be the wrench button on the center console. Anyway, it is lifetime for M cars without a spare. They will come and tow you to the nearest BMW dealer for a flat repair.
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Old 02-14-2013, 02:17 PM
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SD Z4MR SD Z4MR is offline
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I called BMW Assist yesterday and got nowhere.

After going through the phone menu and selecting the option for "all other questions" or something like that, I was connected an agent. She started asking all kinds of questions and I said that I wasn't calling for roadside assistance, I just had a question. She said that she was dispatch, didn't know the answer, but would transfer me to someone who would. (I'm pretty sure that I didn't press 1 for Roadside Assistance.) After waiting a few minutes I appeared to be back to the main menu. I went through this whole process again, and this agent was also in dispatch. After interrupting her and again explaining my question, he said she would transfer me to Customer Service. I ended up with someone who was dispatch for something called Signature Auto Club who said I would have to call BMW Assist.

Anyone else want to give it a go?
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  #22  
Old 02-14-2013, 05:56 PM
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vintage42 vintage42 is offline
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Originally Posted by Z3Papa View Post
... every Z that ran through the factory in Spartanburg was run up to 140 in the booth before being checked off. Never understood why it was ok for them but wrong for the owner...
It would be OK for the owner if they did it briefly, which they are either unable or cannot be trusted to do. After vintage BMW motorcycle rebuilds, the best break in consists of short runs to high speed, 10-15 seconds, followed by backing off. Could only be done on hilly twisty rural roads.
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Old 02-15-2013, 03:13 PM
chickdr chickdr is offline
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Originally Posted by SD Z4MR View Post
I called BMW Assist yesterday and got nowhere.

After going through the phone menu and selecting the option for "all other questions" or something like that, I was connected an agent. She started asking all kinds of questions and I said that I wasn't calling for roadside assistance, I just had a question. She said that she was dispatch, didn't know the answer, but would transfer me to someone who would. (I'm pretty sure that I didn't press 1 for Roadside Assistance.) After waiting a few minutes I appeared to be back to the main menu. I went through this whole process again, and this agent was also in dispatch. After interrupting her and again explaining my question, he said she would transfer me to Customer Service. I ended up with someone who was dispatch for something called Signature Auto Club who said I would have to call BMW Assist.

Anyone else want to give it a go?
Like I said- I have already checked it out. We do have lifetime roadside assistance for flat repairs since the car has no spare tire. I already confirmed it when a CSR at the dealership told me about it. There are many threads about this with various "no spare" M cars.

Here is a number to try if you want to hear it for yourself- this thread was from 8/12:

Confirmed! Z8's are covered by BMW's Roadside Assistance for life against flat tires (any brand). They will flatbed your car to the nearest BMW dealer or to the BMW dealer of your choice if they are within 50 miles of the closest dealer in the event of tire failure and help arrange for alternate transportation if needed. Call 800-332-4269 for assistance or confirmation of coverage with your VIN

One more piece of supporting info(not sure where this was copied from though...): http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...ide+assistance

Last edited by chickdr; 02-15-2013 at 03:28 PM.
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  #24  
Old 02-17-2013, 01:41 PM
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Pinecone Pinecone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chickdr View Post
As an aside- you don't have to pay for BMW Assist in the M Roadster since it doesn't come with a spare tire. You get lifetime BMW Assist(for flat tires only). Many don't know this, but if you call and ask they will confirm. BMW doesn't want you bad mouthing them for giving you no options when you trash a tire and the Mobility kit won't fix the hole...
Did you call and ask?

I did, and they had heard NOTHING about this. Try making a service call and tell us how it goes.
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Old 02-17-2013, 01:44 PM
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Pinecone Pinecone is offline
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For break in, there is a difference between running it up for a short period on rollers and running it on the road for a longer period of time.

I have heard that BMW engines (at least the M engines) have the rings pre-seated. But you still have other moving parts, bearings, chains, etc. Plus the clutch, the transmission, the differential, and the half shafts.

But if you follow the book, you should be fine.
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