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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I own a 2009 328i with 91,000 miles. At 80,000 miles, the BMW dealership replaced the front and rear brake pads, rotors, and sensors. It was time for an oil change, so I checked the dealership's service website. It APPEARS I need the brakes serviced every 5-10k miles, but this seems excessive. What do I really need?? With relatively new rotors and pads, how often should I get a brake "service"? And what does that mean- are the brake lines bled every time? I drive 15k miles per year. How often should I return for brake servicing?
 

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wooohooo
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Recommendation is to change the brake fluid every 2 years. A few do it more often, particularly those who track their cars, and a few wait longer. I do mine slightly more frequently than the recommended interval. Google "hygroscopic brake fluid" to learn about the main reason to change on a regular interval.

As for the brake parts themselves, of course they will last you way beyond the stated mileage interval.

Also know that you can very easily go into your OBC or whatever it's called by fiddling around with the stalk and/or trip odo button. YouTube will cover just about every service reminder you have. If the mechanic failed to reset a service alert, then you might get that warning come up extremely prematurely.

If you end up becoming very wary of stealerships like I eventually did, you might learn how to safely lift your car and measure the rotors and pads yourself, using a brake gauge set and/or micrometer.

For instance, I use these to check pad wear. Just stick it right in and compare, can't get any easier than that. Might save you $$$.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
BMW-Bwk

Ilovemycar, thanks for the good info. I got at least 50K out of my last pads. So, I will probably be good for the next three years. But, I understand that every two years I should go in for a brake service (which I understand means a brake line bleeding and top off the brake fluids). I hope I am correct on that. Thank you!
 

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wooohooo
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Ilovemycar, thanks for the good info. I got at least 50K out of my last pads. So, I will probably be good for the next three years. But, I understand that every two years I should go in for a brake service (which I understand means a brake line bleeding and top off the brake fluids). I hope I am correct on that. Thank you!
Yes, brake bleed every two years. Any decent indy shop can do it. Uses DOT 4. I choose BMW OEM, about $4 per bottle or so.
 

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The only reason for a 'periodic check' of brakes IN THE PAST was to inspect the linings for wear, so that metal would come into contact with metal and score the surfaces, necessitating more costly machining or replacement of the scored part.
Today, the BMW is equipped with wear sensors which will light up a warning on the dash and let the driver know he needs to get new brake pads. It is possible, nevertheless, to avoid the additional cost of replacing the sensors (once the wear light turns on, the sensor has to be replaced) by replacing the pads in advance of the sensors making contact, and a visual inspection by the mechanic has the possibility of alerting the owner that 'your pads are close to worn down' (i.e. "pad is thin, but sensor has not yet made contact").
Other than as described above, there is no yearly 'brake service' needed. There is, according to BMW recommendation, the need to replace the brake fluid every TWO years, because the brake fluid absorbs water, and water reduces the boiling temperature of the brake fluid, and BMW feels that more than 2 years means a dangerously low boiling temperature, leaving your brakes ineffective in times of emergency. (Other manufacturers have their own brake fluid change intervals, running from yearly to every 3 years to (in the case of Toyota) never :tsk: !)
 

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I know this is not the exact forum to ask this question as I have an 06 E85 (Z4) but the topic is very close. Does any of the gurus know if its OK to exchange my Pentosin DOT4 LV (low viscosity) brake fluid with Pentosin DOT4 if I only use the car in the summer? I am not hard on the bakes and do not track the car. None of the shops in my area carry the LV version and I hate going to the stealership unless I have to.
 
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