Drives: 2008 e90 m3
Join Date: Jan 2012
Proposed M3 Maintenance Schedule
A lot of our cars have come off of free dealer maintenance,and many more will be doing so soon.This is what I have worked up as what I plan to do to maintain my car.I hope to keep it a long time,and take pleasure in a car that runs well,so I would rather over-maintain than under-maintain,especially on a high-performance car like the M3.This comes from reading on this forum, from discussions with a friend who is a BMW master technician, and with a friendly SA at my dealer. I also looked at and give credit to Mike Miller's Lifetime Maintenance Schedule.
Disclaimer: I'm not a mechanic. I have very little mechanical ability. Often,I tell my girlfriend I'm "working on my car." What this actually means is that I'm doing something like cleaning the seats and putting Leatherique on them,or maybe something semi-mechanical like checking coolant level,or checking the oil (with a real dipstick on my other car,or by pushing the stupid button on our car.) Working on my car sounds more manly than what I'm really doing. I actually have very few useful skills,although I can get speeding tickets reduced,which can come in handy.I am pretty good at reading,remembering,and pulling stuff together.
This,then is not meant to be THE WORD. It's just a framework for discussion and opinions.I would love to hear from some of the more mechanically inclined members of the forum.I will add in comments and suggestions from other folks from time to time to make this a collaborative effort.
OIL AND FILTER- Every 5k to 7.5k miles,or 1 year, whichever comes first. (robotk says 7500k or 6 mo,meko says get an oil analysis,7.5 k or one year is fine,even with some tracking.davesaddiction got one,and says based on that he'll go as long as 10k,maybe dropping to 7.5 k if he does some tracking.)
MANUAL TRANS,DIFFERENTIAL FLUIDS, ENGINE & CABIN AIR FILTERS- At least every 30k miles. (dreamspeed says 15k for the engine air filter. exmowner notes it might be a good idea to replace the drain plugs when doing the diif/trans oil,especially on the differential which has an integrated,non-replaceable gasket.)
DCT FLUID- BMW says it's lifetime fill. Mike Miller recs every 30k miles
ALSO, EVERY 30K MILES- Inspect brakes, engine and transmission mounts, belts or pulleys (not sure of terminology here), tensioner, idler pulley,hoses. Replace belts, pulleys, hoses,water pump,thermostat and related parts by 100k miles if not sooner. (dreamspeed says 60k for drive belts,or at least visually inspect. Mike Miller says 60k for OE BMW poly-ribbed serpentine belts,more often for lesser quality belts.)
SPARK PLUGS- Every 30k to 37k (The manual says at 37k.)
SHOCKS- 50k to 60k-(elm3 says the shocks last longer than this,so this is probably on the early side.) Change more frequently if doing Baja racing.
BRAKE FLUID- Every 2 years. (This is what the manual rec's)
COOLANT- Every 3 or 4 years (The manual says it's lifetime fill! I don't believe such a thing exists.) (dreamspeed says 2 years.)
POWER STEERING FLUID- Every 30k (dreamspeed says might be lifetime,do by 60k.)
FUEL FILTER- Not really a maintenance item because it's in the gas tank,incorporated into a fuel pump.However, dreamspeed notes that at some point you'll probably see symptoms of a dirty/clogged fuel filter like sputtering or stalling,and that when you're then changing the fuel filter,it might make sense to also change the fuel pump,especially if you're up at 80k miles or so.
BATTERY-Mvy suggests every 3-4 years.
ADJUST VALVES- Not needed, the S65 engine has hydraulic lifters which I believe do not need adjustment.Note that phrozen 06 found that oil started seeping out of his vc gaskets at around 129k,so based on that i think it might be prudent to replace these at,say,100k
tiato notes all this should be done more frequently if your car will see much track time,which is a good point.This schedule is geared to a mostly street-driven car.
Anyone have thoughts or suggestions? Have at it.
Last edited by bimdo; 01-09-2015 at 05:02 PM.