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E28 (1982 - 1988)

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  #1  
Old 06-18-2013, 07:43 PM
strangeaslife strangeaslife is offline
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Location: Chicago
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
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Mein Auto: 1988 528e
'88 528e, Fix or Sell?

This is my first time posting on the forums here. Hello!
I've got a little dilemma that I'm hoping I can get some extra input on...

I have an 1988 528e which was my first car and I've had it for the past six years. I bought it for $2,100. I love this car and in an ideal world would love to keep driving it forever, but more realistically I'd at least like to keep it on the road by making sure when I get rid of it it's going to someone who will be able to keep up with the repairs. Obviously there's been many expensive repairs over the years and it seems we've really hit the end of the road here as owners of this car. The most recent repair is the brakes. My mechanic is telling me that the brakes, pads, and calipers need to be replaced and it will cost $560. Apparently there was some issue with the calipers sticking which caused the brakes to wear down quickly and very soon the car was undrivable. When my mechanic called to tell me about the brakes, he basically told me to think seriously about whether I wanted to continue putting money into this car at this point. He said that I could fix the brakes but from what he sees he estimates that within six months after that I'm going to be coming in for other major repairs and before I know it I'll be looking at spending another 2k to continue keeping the car on the road (things he mentioned specifically: rear brakes for $362, fuel pressure regulator $202, some connection thing with rear tires, and replace and align them for $688, leaky tranny $567). He's gotten the car into much better shape than it used to be; at one point for a little bit the windows stopped rolling down and the driver door wouldn't open! But it still has a lot of oil leaks, a leaky tranny, etc. and lots of other issues ready to pop up. I love this car, but after six years of dealing with it I think it might be wise to move on...

My question is this: Do I at least fix the brakes to make it more "sellable" as my mother keeps suggesting, or do I save my money and sell it as is? Also, how do I figure out how much my e28 is worth? Like I said, I would be sad to see it taken off the road and sold for scraps/parts/etc. and I would never be dishonest with someone and not tell them the issues it has/will have. We've put a lot of work and money into it and I think it just needs some love from someone who knows what they're doing with this car rather than anyone spending a ton of money to have somebody else fix it for them. The trouble is finding someone like that to buy the car.

Basically I guess I'm looking for some advice here. My mother keeps urging me to crack into my savings (I've been saving since the car broke down, and I'm at $2,100 after a few months) and just fix the brakes so I can get back and forth to work and have transportation while I continue saving for a new car, and then I can sell the car when I'm ready to buy another one and have even more money. She says it won't sell if it doesn't at least have working brakes, but that just seems like so much money to spend on what ultimately kind of seems like a waste... My worst nightmare would be fixing this car right now for the $560 and three weeks later it's got something wrong again. That's what happened the last time I fixed it! I repaired something on it and then not even a month later it was in the shop again with this issue and I haven't been driving it since. I 've been bumming rides from my mom, friends and my boyfriend to get to work. I've been able to save so much money because I haven't had to spend on gas, oil changes, and haven't been going out so much since I don't have my own transport! Just looking for some other opinoins. Money is tight for me as I'm a college student and I can't afford to make a bad move with it right now. Ideally I'd like to continue saving without having to put money towards gas for another six weeks, but even then mom insists the car won't sell without the brake job done.

Input, please?
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  #2  
Old 06-23-2013, 01:02 PM
John in VA John in VA is offline
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Location: Leesburg, VA
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 227
Mein Auto: '74 tii / E28s / '03 530i
If, after 6 years of ownership, you have not learned (or been interested) enough to attempt a few do-it-yourself repairs, you should probably move on. Your shop loves to see you coming in, I'd imagine!
Front AND rear brake parts are ~$200 (not including calipers), but you could pick up used known-good calipers, if they, indeed, need replacing.
A new fuel pressure regulator is <$60 and takes 10 minutes to replace.
You can check the classifieds here and HERE to see what similar cars are selling/sold for.
Tthere might be some MyE28 owners that are near you that can assist in some of the repairs, or show you how to do them. Be sure to check in over there.

Good luck!
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  #3  
Old 06-30-2013, 12:37 PM
catso's Avatar
catso catso is offline
catso
Location: Chicago
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,930
Mein Auto: 2000 323i, 1988 528e
Quote:
Originally Posted by strangeaslife View Post
This is my first time posting on the forums here. Hello!
I've got a little dilemma that I'm hoping I can get some extra input on...

I have an 1988 528e which was my first car and I've had it for the past six years. I bought it for $2,100. I love this car and in an ideal world would love to keep driving it forever, but more realistically I'd at least like to keep it on the road by making sure when I get rid of it it's going to someone who will be able to keep up with the repairs. Obviously there's been many expensive repairs over the years and it seems we've really hit the end of the road here as owners of this car. The most recent repair is the brakes. My mechanic is telling me that the brakes, pads, and calipers need to be replaced and it will cost $560. Apparently there was some issue with the calipers sticking which caused the brakes to wear down quickly and very soon the car was undrivable. When my mechanic called to tell me about the brakes, he basically told me to think seriously about whether I wanted to continue putting money into this car at this point. He said that I could fix the brakes but from what he sees he estimates that within six months after that I'm going to be coming in for other major repairs and before I know it I'll be looking at spending another 2k to continue keeping the car on the road (things he mentioned specifically: rear brakes for $362, fuel pressure regulator $202, some connection thing with rear tires, and replace and align them for $688, leaky tranny $567). He's gotten the car into much better shape than it used to be; at one point for a little bit the windows stopped rolling down and the driver door wouldn't open! But it still has a lot of oil leaks, a leaky tranny, etc. and lots of other issues ready to pop up. I love this car, but after six years of dealing with it I think it might be wise to move on...

My question is this: Do I at least fix the brakes to make it more "sellable" as my mother keeps suggesting, or do I save my money and sell it as is? Also, how do I figure out how much my e28 is worth? Like I said, I would be sad to see it taken off the road and sold for scraps/parts/etc. and I would never be dishonest with someone and not tell them the issues it has/will have. We've put a lot of work and money into it and I think it just needs some love from someone who knows what they're doing with this car rather than anyone spending a ton of money to have somebody else fix it for them. The trouble is finding someone like that to buy the car.

Basically I guess I'm looking for some advice here. My mother keeps urging me to crack into my savings (I've been saving since the car broke down, and I'm at $2,100 after a few months) and just fix the brakes so I can get back and forth to work and have transportation while I continue saving for a new car, and then I can sell the car when I'm ready to buy another one and have even more money. She says it won't sell if it doesn't at least have working brakes, but that just seems like so much money to spend on what ultimately kind of seems like a waste... My worst nightmare would be fixing this car right now for the $560 and three weeks later it's got something wrong again. That's what happened the last time I fixed it! I repaired something on it and then not even a month later it was in the shop again with this issue and I haven't been driving it since. I 've been bumming rides from my mom, friends and my boyfriend to get to work. I've been able to save so much money because I haven't had to spend on gas, oil changes, and haven't been going out so much since I don't have my own transport! Just looking for some other opinoins. Money is tight for me as I'm a college student and I can't afford to make a bad move with it right now. Ideally I'd like to continue saving without having to put money towards gas for another six weeks, but even then mom insists the car won't sell without the brake job done.

Input, please?
Brakes parts are cheap for these cars, and rebuilding your calipers even cheaper. I once bought a set of OEM Beck Arnely front pads for $6 on Amazon. Evaluate the brake system and determine what it really needs, then shop around. You will finds lots of parts sources. Its a DIY type of situation to own an older car, there are always things that will need to be repaired and the cost of having a good shop do all of it is prohibitive.
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2013, 07:13 PM
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Studawg Studawg is offline
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Mein Auto: 2003 540iT M Sport
How many miles are on the car? If you dont have any mechanical skills, or a desire to learn them, you probably shouldnt own a 25 year old car of any kind, much less a BMW. At the same time, I think a lot of people get conned into fixing things that dont need to be fixed. Since you are on a tight budget, here is what I think. Rear brakes? You dont need em, you get all your braking force from the front. Leaky tranny? let it leak and just keep an eye on the fluid level and add it when needed. oil leaks? Same thing. You paid $2100 for the car and had it for 6 years, i say fix the front brakes and just keep driving it. In the meantime, learn a thing or two about auto mechanics. It will probably be worth more to you in the long run than that college degree you're working on.
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  #5  
Old 08-31-2013, 03:05 AM
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BMWFatherFigure BMWFatherFigure is offline
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Mein Auto: E23;E30;E38;E32;E34 +
Your 'shop owner must be planning his retirement on you. Unless you want to learn about your car (any make) you are going to keep him rich. +1 on all the above. If you really love your BMW learn and repair. It aint rocket science. Get the Bentley..............
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