Did you make a new year’s resolution for 2019 yet? If not, here’s one for you — make this the year you start doing repairs and maintenance on your BMW yourself.
Why Work on Your BMW Yourself?
So, why should you start doing your own repairs and maintenance? If you have a BMW, you probably love it — there’s a reason bimmers have attracted so many loyal fans around the world. Working on your own BMW, even if it’s just basic maintenance, will help you:
- Appreciate Your Vehicle: You’ll learn more about how it works and get to see some of its inner workings firsthand.
- Relax With Friends: Working on a car is also a great way to relax and spend time with family and friends. If you’re new to DIY car repairs, you may be able to get a more experienced friend to help you. If you’ve already spent some time working on cars, you can probably find another BMW fan to work with or enlist an enthusiastic newbie who wants to learn more about them.
- Save Money: Another major draw of DIY BMW maintenance is the potential cost savings. Your Mechanic, Inc. ranked BMW as the most expensive car make to maintain and estimated a cost of $17,800 over 10 years. This is mainly because BMWs are more expensive, higher-quality cars to begin with and, therefore, the parts are more expensive too. The labor can also be more expensive, especially if you a more advanced model such as one in the M series. Doing this labor yourself, however, can result in significant savings since labor costs account for a substantial portion of the price of a visit to the mechanic.
Tips for BMW Maintenance, Repairs and Modifications
Say you’ve decided to start working on your car yourself this year. How should you approach this new task? Here are three tips to help you get started.
1. Start Simple
If you’re not experienced in working with cars, start with some of the simpler maintenance tasks. Some great tasks for beginners include:
- Changing your oil and oil filter
- Changing your windshield wipers
- Changing your air filter
- Replacing spark plugs
- Replacing your drive belts
As you get more comfortable with your car, you can move into more involved jobs include a range of maintenance and repair tasks and even some custom mods. That being said, you should probably leave the most advanced jobs, such as transmission repairs, windshield replacement and bodywork, to the professionals.
2. Make Safety Your Top Priority
Safety should always be your top priority when working on your car. Before you get started, make sure you’re in a safe environment. Clear the area of any potential hazards, and if you’re working in a garage, ensure the garage door is working correctly and won’t come down on your workspace. If you’re running your car, leave your garage door open and face the tailpipes toward the outside to prevent hazardous fumes from building up.
While working on your car, wear safety goggles, avoid loose clothing and tie up long hair. If you’re working on the underside of your vehicle, make sure you use high-quality floor jacks that can support your car’s weight and blocks for the wheels. Ensure that you’re working on a level surface and never use makeshift materials as car jacks. You should also have a fire extinguisher and a first aid kit nearby and easily accessible.
Also, make sure that all children and pets stay clear of the area unless they’re under direct supervision. If you’re letting your kids help or watch as you work on your car, give them a basic safety lesson first.
3. Invest in Quality Tools
In addition to your floor jacks, you’ll also need to invest in some other basic tools. Make sure they’re of decent quality — you don’t want your tools breaking mid-maintenance, as this would be quite inconvenient and could cause safety issues. Your BMW deserves high-quality tools. Many BMWs come with a small set of tools, so check what you have in that kit.
Some of the basic tools you’ll need include:
- Phillips and flathead screwdrivers
- An adjustable wrench
- A torque wrench
- A socket and ratchet set
If you’re a BMW owner, make 2019 the year you start working on your bimmer yourself. You’ll save money, learn more about your car and have a good time doing it.