Everything You Need to Work on Your BMW

Whether you want to make some modifications to your BMW or simply have to perform repairs and maintenance, you’re going to need a few tools. Turn your garage into a makeshift mechanic shop with these essential pieces of equipment. Then, get to work!

1. Floor Jack and Stands

If you plan to work on any of the components beneath your BMW, you’ll need a floor jack to lift and lower it. You’ll also need at least two jack stands to hold your car in place. Purchase stands that are rated for the weight of your vehicle to ensure the safety of both you and your car.

2. Wheel Chocks

Every year, roughly 13,000 automotive technicians sustain injuries while performing regular maintenance and repairs. To minimize injuries and fatalities, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) mandates the use of wheel chocks while operating on heavy machinery. These little blocks will keep your BMW in place as you work and will provide peace of mind if you don’t trust your parking brake.

3. Micro-Abrasive Tube Brush

It’s also wise to have some tube brushes on hand. Use nylox micro-abrasive brushes for internal deburring and finishing applications. For battery maintenance and scrubbing the inside of cooling tubes, you might use a wire tube brush instead. You might also use these brushes to eliminate rust, clean corroded light sockets and unclog EGR ports.

4. Socket Wrench Set

You must replace your spark plugs every so often. When the time comes, you’ll need a socket wrench to remove the old ones. Purchase a set with multiple sockets to ensure you always have the right size for the job. Odds are good you’ll be using it for more than just spark plugs.

5. Breaker Bar

Sometimes nuts and bolts simply won’t move, no matter how much force you use. In this case, you’ll need a breaker bar. The long handle provides maximum torque and stability. Ones with flexible heads also allow you to work from any angle and reach around tight spaces for the best leverage.

6. Tire Pressure Gauge

AC Schnitzer M3 Wheel

In a BMW — and any car, for that matter — correct tire pressure is critical. Check the pressure every so often by using a gauge to take readings. Some even come with a built-in air bleeder to easily reduce tire pressure and a display that glows in the dark so you can ensure your tires are full day or night.

7. Creeper

Working on the undercarriage of your BMW for long periods of time calls for something a little more comfortable than a skateboard. Invest in a creeper with cushioning to support your body and rotating wheels to easily roll you under your car. After an hour or two on your back, you’ll be glad you did.

Do Your Research

As you know, BMWs are luxurious and come with a hefty price tag. Therefore, if you want to perform maintenance work on it, you must know what you’re doing. Otherwise, you’ll end up paying to repair damages on top of the problem you were trying to fix in the first place.

Before grabbing your wrench, take some time to research the job you’d like to tackle. Read the owner’s manual, consult YouTube and public auto forums, and speak to experienced modders. These resources are invaluable as you work to maintain your ride and care for it properly.

How to Become a Better Driver

So you’ve got a BMW, and you don’t want to be the next person featured on Reddit’s “Idiots In Cars.” How can you become a better driver? Driving is a skill that we all tend to learn young. Getting that driver’s license and heading out on the road on our own for the first time is something of a rite of passage. While we hone our skills as we get older and spend more time behind the wheel, it’s easy to get trapped by bad habits we picked up while we were still learning. Thankfully, it’s never too late to become a better driver.

Don’t Tailgate — Ever

Tailgating is never a smart idea, no matter who you’re following. Drafting became popular on long trips — using the downdraft from large semi-trucks to reduce the amount of fuel you burn. While it does work, the benefits are negligible, and you’d have to be far too close to stop safely to save any appreciable amount of gas on your trip. Tailgating causes more than 950,000 injuries and 2,000 deaths every single year.

Be Mindful of Your Speed

We all know what speed limits are and how to follow them, but one thing that driver’s education teachers often neglect to say is that we need to be mindful of road conditions. Driving 75 mph on the interstate is only safe during optimal conditions. During rain, fog or other dangerous weather, meeting the speed limit isn’t safe. 

Learn to Identify Dangerous Intersections

Not all intersections are created equal, and some can be more dangerous than others. Learn how to identify and navigate them safely. Frontage roads, roundabouts and intersections with blinking lights can be incredibly dangerous if you’re not careful. Some roundabouts can reduce traffic accidents by up to 82% — but they only work if the drivers navigating them know what they’re doing. 

Don’t Weave Through Traffic

No one likes getting stuck behind a slow car or a huge truck that struggles to accelerate, but you need to be smart about changing lanes. Weaving in and out of traffic increases your risk of ending up in an accident. Be careful when you decide to change lanes. Give other drivers a wide berth, move smoothly and don’t travel at high speeds. This isn’t a NASCAR track. There are no winners, but if you lose control and cause a pileup because you were impatient, there will be plenty of losers. 

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Don’t Drive Drowsy

We all know that driving under the influence is both dangerous and illegal, but we’ll get behind the wheel after pulling an all-nighter or working a double without a second thought. What your driver’s ed teacher neglected to tell you was that drowsy driving is just as dangerous. Being awake for 24 hours slows your reaction times. It’s roughly equivalent to driving with a 0.10 blood alcohol level. For comparison, you’re considered legally drunk in most parts of the country with a 0.08 BAC. 

Practice, Practice, Practice

When it comes down to it, the only way you’re going to become a better driver is to get behind the wheel and practice. If you’re worried about dangerous intersections, take the time to navigate them during off-peak hours or at night. Drive safely and focus on honing those skills.

7 Things to Do If get into a wreck in your bmw

No one wants to think about getting crashing your BMW, but statistically, you’re likely to file an insurance claim for an accident once every 17.9 years. That might not sound like much but when you multiply that by the sheer number of drivers and cars on the road, there is the potential for hundreds or thousands of accidents every year. What do you need to do after you get into an accident?

1. Stay At The Scene

The first and most important rule you never leave the scene of an accident that you’re involved in. Leaving the scene, especially if someone is injured, changes the occurrence from a fender bender to a hit and run, which could have some very serious consequences. Stay at the scene and move on to the next step. 

2. Contact Law Enforcement

The next thing you have to do is contact law enforcement. This is especially important if it was a hit and run or there are injuries. Even if you feel like it isn’t something serious enough to require the intervention of police or medical professionals, give them a call anyway to find out whether they need to send someone to address the accident. 

3. Follow Social Distancing Rules

This is a new step for 2020, but with the COVID-19 pandemic running rampant, social distancing rules apply even after a car accident. If the other driver isn’t following social distancing guidelines or is making you feel uncomfortable, stay in your car until law enforcement arrives and can assist. Don’t fight with anyone over masks or social distancing — just remove yourself from the situation until it’s safe. 

4. Don’t Talk to Anyone

It’s tempting to strike up a conversation while you wait for the police or a tow truck but it’s a good idea to avoid talking to the other driver unless absolutely necessary. Don’t admit fault and don’t talk to anyone until you’ve had a chance to talk to law enforcement officers. 

5. Call Your Insurance Company

The next step is to put in a call to your insurance company. You’ll need to contact them again after you receive the police report but it’s a good idea to put them on the alert that you’ve been in an accident so they can be ready to act as soon as you are. 

6. Get Medical Attention

Next, once you’ve gotten permission from law enforcement to leave the scene of the accident, you need to make an appointment with your family doctor. Soft tissue injuries from accidents like whiplash can take days or weeks to manifest, so you could find yourself feeling symptoms long after you’ve put the whole accident behind you. 

7. File Your Claim

Finally, once you have the police report in hand, call your insurance company again and file your claim. The details of this will depend on who is at fault and the amount of damage done to both vehicles, but the sooner you get the ball rolling, the sooner you can complete the process and move on with your life. 

Be Careful Out There

Hundreds of accidents of various severity happen every single day. While no one wants to get involved in one, it’s important to know what to do if they occur can make it easier to deal with. 

The Ultimate BMW Forum