Tag Archives: BMW

Why You Should Get a BMW for a Project car

Picking your perfect project car is a personal experience. Do you want a car that’s easy to work on or one you can sell for a lot of money later? Are you planning on turning your project car into your daily driver, or are you just tricking it out for showrooms or the track?

For many car fans, a BMW — especially an older one — can be an excellent option for a project car. Why should you pick an older BMW for your new project build? Here are four reasons.

  1. They’re High-Quality and Attractive

Utilitarian cars don’t always look the best — they’re certainly not something you’re going to take to your local car show unless it’s to show off that it’s 0-60. That’s one of the best things that BMW has going for them — they make those blocky, utilitarian cars sexy. Even if you pick up a model that is a couple of decades old, chances are it will still be in pretty good shape and might also run.

  1. They’re Everywhere

Sure, a brand-new Beamer might be out of your price range, but older BMW’s are just about everywhere.  You can pick up a used 3 series for a few thousand dollars — well below Blue Book value — nearly anywhere in the country. Seriously, pull up Craigslist right now, or your newspaper’s classified and search “Used BMW for Sale.”

A quick search for Tampa, Florida with a maximum price of $5000 brings back more than 800 results – and that’s just on Craigslist!

  1. Their Parts Are Easy to Get

You don’t have to worry about sourcing your parts from Germany anymore. You can find replacement parts online, or at your local auto parts store without too much trouble. Ordering parts online can help save you some money, but you’ll need to match up some other at the store before you bring them home to make sure you get the perfect replacement.

If you’re not able to find the perfect replacement part, don’t worry too much. Most of these old BMWs are made mostly of steel, making it easy to get custom parts stamped. Plus, metal stamping you know you’re always getting a part that fits perfectly.

  1. They’re Good for Everything

A BMW is good for just about everything — daily driving, shows, spending time on the track or any combination of the three. It doesn’t take much to swap your tires and spend some time on the road, then swap them back and drive home.

What your BMW can do will be entirely up to the work you do to it. When it comes down to it, these little cars are good for just about everything.

There’s nothing quite like owning a BMW, no matter how old it is. If you’re looking for a new project car, consider adding a BMW to your collection. You won’t be disappointed, and you may even find a new love for mechanics you would have missed out on otherwise.

Driving Your BMW in the Winter

Bavaria in January can see below-freezing temperatures, and in other parts of Germany, it’s even colder. Right now, a large chunk of the United States is seeing sub zero temps, with highs barely getting above zero. If you’re concerned about driving your Bimmer in the cold, you can feel confident it’s built to perform in any condition.

However, just because you have a high-performing car, you shouldn’t drive as if nothing has changed. To ensure your BMW has a long and rewarding life, you should take steps to be safe during the winter months and protect your car from the harsh effects of salted roads. These tips are easy to follow, but they make a world of difference.

Protecting Your Finish

If you’re like many BMW owners and want to keep the paint on your car looking as shiny and new as possible, winter weather is no fun. Snow and rain can strip wax from your car’s finish, but that’s only the beginning of your problems. Particularly for older models, you’ll want to ensure oxidization and rust do not set in.

The first step you should take to protect your car from the elements is to keep it inside. A clean, organized garage is the best place to do this. Make sure the garage seals well, has proper insulation and that the door is in good working order. A running car you can’t back out doesn’t do you much good.

Storing your BMW indoors will go a long way toward improving your winter driving experience. Allowing the battery and engine fluids to stay warm will reduce the effort needed to start the car, prolonging battery and accessory life.

The warmer indoor environment will also keep ice from clinging to underbody components. This step is critical in preventing rust, as expanding water can cause small cracks in metal components where rust can begin to eat away at your prized vehicle.

Driving in Snow and Ice

Some BMWs come equipped with the xDrive all-wheel-drive system, but if you own a rear-wheel-drive model, you can still enjoy it when there’s snow on the roads if you take the right precautions. To maximize traction, you should install a set of snow tires. Consider having a second set of wheels, so you can keep the snow tires mounted and install them when the weather turns bad.

No tire can stop you from making bad decisions on the road, so use caution. If you’re not sure how much traction you have, drive slowly and remain in control. Avoid making sudden or jerky movements.

Lastly, be prepared for anything. You could end up stuck in the snow and the cold, so it’s a good idea to keep an emergency kit in your car. BMWs often come with toolsets — however, you should also put together a kit containing, at minimum, a few snacks, water, a flashlight, a space blanket and flares. You should also carry a set of jumper cables.

It might sound like a lot, but these small things will allow you to drive your BMW all through the winter. That’s an easy choice compared to winding up stuck in a snowbank.

How to Get the Most out of Your BMW’s Engine

BMW has always been known for powerful, high-quality engines, but no engine will keep running forever without a bit of maintenance and some TLC. What do you need to do to get the most of out of your new or new-to-you BMW engine?

Change Your Oil

Changing your oil is one of the most important things you can do to keep your engine running smoothly for as long as possible. You don’t need to change it every three months or 3,000 miles, though — that’s a sales gimmick to make you spend more money than necessary.

You might hear a rumor that you can go 15,000 miles between oil changes for a BMW, but this isn’t true either. While newer models can go up to 10,000 miles between changes, the manufacturer recommends an intermediate oil change somewhere in the middle to make sure everything is running smoothly. Plan on changing your oil every 7,500 miles or so.

Invest in Good Engine Treatments

A good engine treatment can give your oil an edge and help you get the most out of your engine.  Depending on the formula to the individual treatment, it can improve the lubrication of your engine oil, protect your moving parts from dirt and engine debris and even improve gas mileage.

It is important to note that not all engine treatments are created equal and there are tons of them on the market right now. Most auto parts stores have an entire wall dedicated just to engine treatments, so do your research to find out which treatment will work the best for your individual engine needs.

Don’t Buy Cheap Filters

When it comes to filters, you definitely get what you pay for.  Cheap filters clog quickly and have to be replaced more often, which can bog down your engine and, if left in place too long, potentially cause damage.

We’re not saying you have to drop a ton of money on a high-end reusable K&N filter or anything — just don’t buy the cheapest filters on the shelf, because you’ll end up regretting it. Think of car filters as you would shoes: you can spend $100 on a pair of sneakers that will last you a year or you can spend twenty bucks five times on cheap sneakers that hurt your feet and wear out after a month or two.

The same thing applies to filters.

Pick a Specialist, Not Your Neighborhood Mechanic

One of the best things you can do for your BMW is to drive right past your neighborhood mechanic and instead head to a local BMW specialist. Not only will they have a better idea of the kind of treatment your BMW needs, but they’ll also have easier access to the replacement parts and equipment you need to ensure your car keeps running for years to come.

A BMW is a good car to invest in if you want something that will see you through many years of daily driving — but no car can survive if you don’t take care of it. Keep these tips in mind to get the most out of your BMW engine.