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      09-09-2013, 02:38 PM   #1
BMWM4
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supercharger reliability?

I'm thinking of adding a supercharger to my car, but my concern is I daily drive my car and need something super reliable... if that even exists. I am thinking of the active autowerke system as active is a very reputable name for the m3. I was going to go with the stage 1 just because I figured its less power probably more reliable then the stage two. is this true? for those of you who have a supercharger or who have read enough about them to comment are they reliable what issues can I expect?
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      09-09-2013, 02:54 PM   #2
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That is a very loaded question... this should be good
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      09-09-2013, 02:59 PM   #3
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I don't have a supercharger yet, but my opinion on the matter from reading many posts on here is that the kit manufacturer matters little. The main differences between Evolve/AA and ESS/VF are Vortech vs Rotrex blowers. The rest of the components are pretty similar.

The main failure point of most S/C engines seems to be rod bearings, cylinder 8's rod bearings seem to be the worst. When they fail, they fail catastrophically, in most cases throwing the rod and destroying the engine in the process.

That said, I am considering going FI at some point, but like you, my M3 is my DD and I have concerns about reliability. I would assume that lower PSI kits such as AA stage 1 or ESS VT1 will likely put less stress on the engine than some of the stage2/VT2 models, but that is purely anecdotal and I have little evidence to back up my claim other than the fact that I haven't seen any of the low-psi blowers break an engine on here. Usually its the higher-end models that tend to explode.

I'm sure you'll get some 'spirited' responses to your question though, however I just wanted to give you my $0.02.
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      09-09-2013, 03:03 PM   #4
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IMO its always better for reliability to never go for max power. Being more of the conservative side is how i always been with my cars. It common sense less boost on a motor is less stress. although the s/c kits are not made to blow your motor. of course shit happens.

But yes if you are DD your car,and putting miles on it. I wouldn't want a stage 3 kit.
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      09-09-2013, 03:04 PM   #5
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It depends on who tunes it............................just kidding. I couldn't resist.
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      09-09-2013, 03:08 PM   #6
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It depends on who tunes it............................just kidding. I couldn't resist.
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      09-09-2013, 03:26 PM   #7
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Hi,
I would first like to start with a thank you for considering us as your number one choice to supercharger your beloved vehicle.

When it comes to reliability we have some of the highest mileage supercharged cars out there 80k+. Our level 1 kit is extremely conservative and you should have 0 issues running it as hard as you want on a daily basis. Infact 95% of our kits are installed on daily driven cars so this is nothing new to us. We have put many hours perfecting not only our tune but the consistency of the kit on a day to day basis and our customers dyno results prove it.

While we take as many precautions as possible to make sure our kits are as safe as they can be, their are also a lot of things that are out of our control. As with any performance upgrade the more you push the limits of the stock engine the chances of something happening do go up regardless of manufacture you decide on.

With that said I would either go for a stage 1 or stage 2 for maximum reliability.

Last edited by Andrew@ActiveAutowerke; 09-09-2013 at 03:38 PM.
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      09-09-2013, 03:30 PM   #8
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This topic has been discussed in several threads. I would say that all of the manufacturers have safe supercharger systems out there. There's no data supporting one has a higher probability for catastrophic failure. The only engine failure I've seen happen in person was on the only M3 in the group that didn't have a supercharger, had the second lowest mileage, and had never been tuned.

Also, many of the "stage 1" or entry level kits are not intercooled. There's also unclear data supporting the benefits of reliability by having your supercharger cooled, but it seems logical that it would help. So with that logic a mid-level supercharger would be the way to go.
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Last edited by Longbow64; 09-09-2013 at 03:35 PM. Reason: content
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      09-09-2013, 03:42 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Longbow64 View Post
This topic has been discussed in several threads. I would say that all of the manufacturers have safe supercharger systems out there. There's no data supporting one has a higher probability for catastrophic failure. The only engine failure I've seen happen in person was on the only M3 in the group that didn't have a supercharger, had the second lowest mileage, and had never been tuned.

Also, many of the "stage 1" or entry level kits are not intercooled. There's also unclear data supporting the benefits of reliability by having your supercharger cooled, but it seems logical that it would help. So with that logic a mid-level supercharger would be the way to go.
All of our kits come intercooled for this reason
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      09-09-2013, 03:46 PM   #10
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There you go.
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      09-09-2013, 04:31 PM   #11
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wow, that is a lot of information, nobody offers a warranty or anything if something should go wrong though right?
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      09-09-2013, 05:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWM3 View Post
wow, that is a lot of information, nobody offers a warranty or anything if something should go wrong though right?
NO !!!!!
I`m from NYC and my 09 VF620 goes to manhattan 3/5 times per week, flawless !!!!!!!
do a little home work and go with a shop that has racing experience, I went with VAC out of Philadelphia. this guys never let me down, you have a question they pick up he phone and talk to you and for me that makes a huge difference, thats why i went with VF after all people ship Cars and motors to this shop from all over the world. my 09 today has 33K miles and about 12K w/blower a few track weekends and the only thing that i notice is my rear tires only survive 6 months now
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      09-09-2013, 05:39 PM   #13
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how do the intercoolers hold up when going to the track pretty often (1,2 times a week).
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      09-09-2013, 06:30 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWM3 View Post
wow, that is a lot of information, nobody offers a warranty or anything if something should go wrong though right?
We offer a 2 yr unlimited mile warranty on all parts included with the kit.


Quote:
Originally Posted by pkim1079 View Post
how do the intercoolers hold up when going to the track pretty often (1,2 times a week).
They get the normal dings from small debris every now and then just like my 135 does... We believe the extra cooling is worth it though.
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      09-09-2013, 06:43 PM   #15
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They get the normal dings from small debris every now and then just like my 135 does... We believe the extra cooling is worth it though.
Not concerned about dings, more about heat soaking.
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      09-09-2013, 06:49 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pkim1079 View Post
Not concerned about dings, more about heat soaking.
Quite well actually since you are always moving on the track the intercooler always has a steady amount of new air flowing through cooling it down. Our back to back wins in the one lap of america show how well an air to air system holds up. The only time I see air to water having the advantage is in situations like traffic/sitting and on the dyno.

Also our Gen 2 kits include an even larger intercooler than before so heat soak should not be an issue!
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      09-09-2013, 07:07 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Team Plutonium View Post
I ran my supercharged M3 daily, and I ran her hard... no issues including 4 track days, performed like a champ. For the last year I did run the larger motorsport 24 oil cooler though.
It seems a lot of people are. The s65 may have some small flaws but it really has proven itself to be a damn good motor.

Last edited by Andrew@ActiveAutowerke; 09-09-2013 at 07:14 PM.
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      09-09-2013, 07:16 PM   #18
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Agreed. One of the greatest engines out there!
Until the S55 hits jk
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      09-09-2013, 08:22 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWM3 View Post
wow, that is a lot of information, nobody offers a warranty or anything if something should go wrong though right?
I'm fairly certain all S/C manufacturers include a warranty that covers all the parts included with their supercharger kits.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrse92m3 View Post
NO !!!!!
I`m from NYC and my 09 VF620 goes to manhattan 3/5 times per week, flawless !!!!!!!
do a little home work and go with a shop that has racing experience, I went with VAC out of Philadelphia. this guys never let me down, you have a question they pick up he phone and talk to you and for me that makes a huge difference, thats why i went with VF after all people ship Cars and motors to this shop from all over the world. my 09 today has 33K miles and about 12K w/blower a few track weekends and the only thing that i notice is my rear tires only survive 6 months now
Glad to hear!
You also bring up a good point that lots of people looking to go F/I overlook. No matter what kit you buy, you're also paying for service/support especially if they're installing the kit. This is why we're proud to work with all our other Authorized Installers like VAC.


-OP, if you'd like, we have an authorized installer right down the freeway from you in York. You can order the kit from your Dealer of choice and have a VF-Authorized installer local to you assist with your upgrade. There's a lot more things to consider when going s/c. Feel free to contact me anytime with questions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew@ActiveAutowerke View Post
It seems a lot of people are. The s65 may have some small flaws but it really has proven itself to be a damn good motor.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Team Plutonium View Post
Agreed. One of the greatest engines out there!
+2, the s65 while driving sounds good, but at idle...
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      09-10-2013, 09:09 AM   #20
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my favourite thing about our engines is that I feel they are bulletproof when stock, I mean I can beat on it regularly without even a thought that anything will happen. I fear that will change with a blower? I dont want to worry about pushing the car it defeats the purpose of the mod if you can't push it as much
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      09-10-2013, 09:34 AM   #21
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Just a question for folks living in the US.

What's the point of putting a SC on your DD M3?

I totally understand if you track it, but it seems like you'll never get full use of what the engine/SC combo is capable of in the US.

I've been living in Europe since 06' and find it absolutely fantastic to drive here. I never tuned or charged my M3 because I didn't feel it was necessary until all of the cool kids started to do it and I didn't want to be left behind.

I did get my X6M tuned and holy shit!
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      09-10-2013, 10:51 AM   #22
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I agree. You can't use any of the added power on the street. Hell, I can't use most of my stock power without provoking WA state troopers (which are everywhere).
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