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  #1  
Old 12-06-2019, 12:30 PM
Consuelomaria Consuelomaria is offline
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2008 328xi, $9000+ in repairs..repair cost info for Chicagoans

This post is part info sharing, part rant and me wondering out loud if any of this is normal wear and tear for a car this age or is my frustration in having to put this money into this car warranted? The sucker is in the shop once again, now with suggested repairs costing $3900 (detailed below). Any advice or personal repair/maintenance experiences are welcome.

Before anyone suggests that I am having these problems because of neglect, not the case. I bought the car new, straight off the line in Munich, had regular maintenance under warranty. After the warranty expired, I continued maintenance at the BMW dealerships for 4 years. When I couldn't afford the dealership after retiring from the military, I began using indy Euro auto shops the past 3 years. The car will be 12yrs old in April, with 186,000 miles, but I started having major problems at 8yrs/118,00 miles. I am really trying to not buy another car until my daughter finishes college next year and am having a hard time wrapping my brain around how much money I am having to spend on keeping this car running. Especially, when I think about how little problems I've had with least expensive cars in my lifetime. I had my Ford Explorer for 10yrs and the only major issue was when I (due to my negligence) blew the head gasket at 10yrs of ownership. I have an 2002 Chevy Cavalier siting in my driveway that runs better than my BMW right now.

Below are repairs since 2016 and what is currently going on. Prices include labor and all required parts.


6/2016 $1020.00
Problem Stalling, squealing noise, pulls when braking
Repair Replace camshaft vanos solenoid, support arm bushings

9/2016 $696
Problem Won't Start
Repair Replace starter, intake gaskets

12/2016 $1055
Problem Won't go in reverse, window washer leak
Repair Replace transmission selector valve, replace washer pump

7/2017 $383
Problem intermittent misfire
Repair Replace plugs, coils, air filter (I realize this is regular maintenance, but I'd just had this done 2yrs prior)

10/2017 $1555
Problem Warning lights on 4x4 ABS, etc, clanking noise
Repair Replace transfer case, oil filter kit

8/2018 $381
Problem Loud squealing on deceleration and idle, vibrating when idle
Repair Replaced camshaft vanos solenoid, replaced drive belt and tensioner, oil filter kit (Is it normal to have to replace the solenoids again in 2yrs)

12/2018 $1199
Problem Oil leak, vibrating when idle
Repair Replaced valve cover and valve cover gasket. Valve cover was cracked.

4 Dec 2019 (my mechanic is on vacation, so I had to take it some place else)
Problem Oil leak. Vibrating when idle, sounds like loud drum, shaking like crazy when at a stop-light, but calms down in neutral or park. Air Conditioner/heater making loud rumbling noise

Suggested repairs below:

- Oil pan gasket leak $1210 ($1115 labor)
- Oil Filer Filter Housing $297.50 ($262.50 labor)
- Electronic Water Pump $919 ($420 labor)
- ABS bad right front speed sensor is bad - $410 ($120 labor)
- Camshaft Timing Fault Code $359 ($73 labor) This is for the solenoids to be replaced. Is it normal for solenoids to be replaced again? Three times in 3 years.

Also getting a Transfer Case Module Fault Code, which is weird since the transfer case was replaced in 2017.

Oh, and I had to replace the actuators on my front and back driver side doors and front passenger and back driver side windows at different intervals in the past few years. I've never had my power doors and windows stop working on any car I've very owned


Thanks for any input and I hope this helps others with comparing repair prices in the Chicago area.

Last edited by Consuelomaria; 12-06-2019 at 12:41 PM.
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  #2  
Old 12-06-2019, 12:50 PM
CALWATERBOY TRE's Avatar
CALWATERBOY TRE CALWATERBOY TRE is offline
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Mein Auto: E93 335i, somewhat mod
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Maybe it's totaled?
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  #3  
Old 12-06-2019, 09:48 PM
pidge1114 pidge1114 is offline
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Mein Auto: BMW '13 335is Convertible
Ditch it. Pretty obvious you're falling down a rabbit hole. Eat your losses and put that money for repairs towards another car.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:04 PM
SmitteyB SmitteyB is offline
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Location: Boston, USA
 
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Posts: 26
Mein Auto: 2007 328i, 2007 X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consuelomaria View Post
This post is part info sharing, part rant and me wondering out loud if any of this is normal wear and tear for a car this age or is my frustration in having to put this money into this car warranted? The sucker is in the shop once again, now with suggested repairs costing $3900 (detailed below). Any advice or personal repair/maintenance experiences are welcome.

Before anyone suggests that I am having these problems because of neglect, not the case. I bought the car new, straight off the line in Munich, had regular maintenance under warranty. After the warranty expired, I continued maintenance at the BMW dealerships for 4 years. When I couldn't afford the dealership after retiring from the military, I began using indy Euro auto shops the past 3 years. The car will be 12yrs old in April, with 186,000 miles, but I started having major problems at 8yrs/118,00 miles. I am really trying to not buy another car until my daughter finishes college next year and am having a hard time wrapping my brain around how much money I am having to spend on keeping this car running. Especially, when I think about how little problems I've had with least expensive cars in my lifetime. I had my Ford Explorer for 10yrs and the only major issue was when I (due to my negligence) blew the head gasket at 10yrs of ownership. I have an 2002 Chevy Cavalier siting in my driveway that runs better than my BMW right now.

Below are repairs since 2016 and what is currently going on. Prices include labor and all required parts.


6/2016 $1020.00
Problem Stalling, squealing noise, pulls when braking
Repair Replace camshaft vanos solenoid, support arm bushings

9/2016 $696
Problem Won't Start
Repair Replace starter, intake gaskets

12/2016 $1055
Problem Won't go in reverse, window washer leak
Repair Replace transmission selector valve, replace washer pump

7/2017 $383
Problem intermittent misfire
Repair Replace plugs, coils, air filter (I realize this is regular maintenance, but I'd just had this done 2yrs prior)

10/2017 $1555
Problem Warning lights on 4x4 ABS, etc, clanking noise
Repair Replace transfer case, oil filter kit

8/2018 $381
Problem Loud squealing on deceleration and idle, vibrating when idle
Repair Replaced camshaft vanos solenoid, replaced drive belt and tensioner, oil filter kit (Is it normal to have to replace the solenoids again in 2yrs)

12/2018 $1199
Problem Oil leak, vibrating when idle
Repair Replaced valve cover and valve cover gasket. Valve cover was cracked.

4 Dec 2019 (my mechanic is on vacation, so I had to take it some place else)
Problem Oil leak. Vibrating when idle, sounds like loud drum, shaking like crazy when at a stop-light, but calms down in neutral or park. Air Conditioner/heater making loud rumbling noise

Suggested repairs below:

- Oil pan gasket leak $1210 ($1115 labor)
- Oil Filer Filter Housing $297.50 ($262.50 labor)
- Electronic Water Pump $919 ($420 labor)
- ABS bad right front speed sensor is bad - $410 ($120 labor)
- Camshaft Timing Fault Code $359 ($73 labor) This is for the solenoids to be replaced. Is it normal for solenoids to be replaced again? Three times in 3 years.

Also getting a Transfer Case Module Fault Code, which is weird since the transfer case was replaced in 2017.

Oh, and I had to replace the actuators on my front and back driver side doors and front passenger and back driver side windows at different intervals in the past few years. I've never had my power doors and windows stop working on any car I've very owned


Thanks for any input and I hope this helps others with comparing repair prices in the Chicago area.
Cam Timing - VANOS solenoids should last 100k. Are you putting in quality parts? Not used or Chinese?

Transfer Case - remanufactured?

Very odd for those two.

Has your water pump failed? Or is your Indy being proactive?
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Old 12-07-2019, 07:58 AM
dharmabmw dharmabmw is offline
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When you say dealer maintained, what was the oil change interval? More frequent oil changes prevents a lot of engine problems especially with respect to the vanos system. Also, if you DIY you can save a considerable amount of money especially on simple things like plugs and oil changes.
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Old 12-07-2019, 08:30 AM
marvinstockman marvinstockman is offline
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Mein Auto: 1997 M#
Are your oil leaks weeping or really, really leaking. If weeping, ignore them.

ABS - do you have an ABS light on? If not, your sensors are good. On a rainy day, try activating your abs by stopping hard.

As was said, water pump may only be preventive.

Your rough idle may only be a dirty idle air control valve.

Remember, the shop may be pulling past codes that are not current. In any case, a code is not a license to replace parts, you still have to use your head and troubleshoot.
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:54 PM
CALWATERBOY TRE's Avatar
CALWATERBOY TRE CALWATERBOY TRE is offline
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Mein Auto: E93 335i, somewhat mod
Quote:
Originally Posted by Consuelomaria View Post
This post is part info sharing, part rant....

>snip<

Dude, just sell it!

Put the proceeds down on a sweet new Accord, hybrid might be best w/47 mpg city & hwy.

Think on it man. What's yer ride worth in 3 years even with all repairs? What, not even $9k? YOW!

Now then. What's that Accord worth, just 3 years old and you've spent just about as much as proceeds of BMW sale + repairs....?? NOTE: Honda's routinely go 200k+ mi before major issues.

Food fer thought.
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Old 12-07-2019, 03:53 PM
Yukoner Yukoner is offline
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Location: Whitehorse, YT
 
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Posts: 1,594
Mein Auto: 2011 328i x-drive
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmitteyB View Post
Cam Timing - VANOS solenoids should last 100k. Are you putting in quality parts? Not used or Chinese?

Transfer Case - remanufactured?

Very odd for those two.

Has your water pump failed? Or is your Indy being proactive?
+1. This list includes some common things (Valve Cover Gasket, Oil Filter Housing Gasket), but also some very uncommon things, such as transfer case, etc. TBH, sounds like a lemon. Especially if you owned it since new and you (if you're being honest) were up to date on regular maintenance. I also wonder about something like:

10/2017 $1555
Problem Warning lights on 4x4 ABS, etc, clanking noise
Repair Replace transfer case, oil filter kit


This seems kind of cheap for an entire transfer case. I feel the part alone cost more than this.....

Anyways, as others have said, I'd say sell this one and cut the losses.
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  #9  
Old 12-08-2019, 07:06 AM
Mark963 Mark963 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2011 E90 328xi
I'm certainly not an authority, but it seems like many of the repairs were "cheap" for what they were. But it also seems like they're more frequent that what's generally expected. For instance $383 for coils, plugs and a filter is very reasonable - about 1/3 of what a dealer would charge. But those should last several years - 60K on plugs is being conservative and coils should last 2-3x that as long as the plugs are replaced every 60K.

The Vanos solenoids normally last longer than that. Is it possible that the oil isn't being changed at least every 8-10K miles with REAL synthetic and that's leading to the solenoids plugging up (and possibly not actually failing). Pulling them and cleaning them is a 10 minute job.

Have you ever read Mike Miller's suggested maintenance intervals? There is certainly a notion floating around that car manufacturers have been encouraged to extend fluid change intervals (15-20k oil, 100K transmission fluid) in the interest of creating less "waste" but that may also shorten the life of the engine, transmission, etc. One of the manufacturers of transmissions used in BMW's had published guidelines far shorter than BMW called for. Maybe some of your maintenance is the result of following BMW's guidelines. Many of us try to do most of our own work not just to save money, but to know exactly what's been done with our cars and trying to do "best practice" instead of "dealer recommended".

"So you bought an E90 V 1.2.pdf" is a version of Mike Miller's maintenance suggestions. You might dig that up just to see what other people experience and also what's considered good preventative maintenance.

Perhaps you're getting the cheapest the service at the moment, but maybe not the best and it's leading to more future repairs. Maybe it is just wearing out. You might never know. Maybe taking it somewhere else for a second opinion would be good. BMW's aren't generally as easy to own as some other brands, unless you're willing to throw money at them.

I've owned cars where I derived enjoyment just from their low cost and the economics of owning them. People tend to focus heavily on repairs but not on depreciation and I've owned a few pretty decent cars that cost me around $1k/year in depreciation over the time that I had them - that's pretty good for any generally reliable car and I know my 328's depreciation is way more than that, but it's a cost I am willing to pay.

Good luck and let us know how it works out for you.
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