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      06-17-2014, 02:20 AM   #1
MWE92M3
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Question about servicing my car

My E92 has 56k miles on it now and the only service indicator that's currently on is for an oil change. I've done two HPDE events since my last service (break flush) at the dealer and I feel like I either need another break flush or new pads, but none of the indicators have gone off.

What's the general action here? Does everyone wait for the lights to come on or just get servicing down on their own schedule (more specific to brakes in my case)?

I'm thinking of taking my car to the Dinan service center as it's more convenient than the BMW dealer. I want to find out if they can install any non-Dinan, more performance oriented, brake fluid/pads for me.
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      06-17-2014, 09:03 AM   #2
tinman831
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Inspect the brake pads and fluid visually to determine whether or not they need to be changed. If the pad wear sensors go off then you'll need to replace the sensors as well. You don't want it to get that far.
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      06-17-2014, 11:03 AM   #3
jphughan
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As above, pads should be replaced based on visual inspection. If you're not running full race pads, I'd recommend replacing the pads when they're around half of their original thickness if an HPDE is coming up because the second half wears a lot faster than the first, and they'll start fading much more quickly as they get thinner. If you don't have any HPDEs on the horizon, pads can be worn very close to the end on pure street driving before requiring replacement.

Brake fluid should be replaced at least every year on a car that sees track time. Some HPDE organizers' tech forms require fluid to have been flushed within the last 6 months. I find that unnecessary for proper brake fluid, but I understand that HPDEs just want to have a standard tech form that applies as broadly as possible (even to those running stock fluid) and plays it safe.

If you want to upgrade your pads and fluid, don't bother with Dinan. For brake fluid, use something like Motul 600 or Castrol SRF (lots more information on both in other threads), and for brake pads it depends on how advanced you are. If you're still starting out, I'd recommend a "street performance" pad like StopTech's option; it will give you more fade resistance on the track (and far less chance of uneven pad deposits) while still behaving just like OEM on the road. If you feel the need for a full race pad and are comfortable swapping between street and race pads, PFC is a popular brand for our cars and has a few compound options. Pagid Yellow is the other popular option, but they're a bit more finicky about proper bed-in and swapping between street and race pads, so keep that in mind.

For other service, hopefully you're not waiting until the iDrive indicator goes off to change your oil. You should also definitely change your diff oil and (if 6MT) trans oil if you haven't already. Those don't come up on iDrive, and the dealer knows that they should be changed at every third full oil change (not counting the 1200-mile service), i.e. every ~45K miles, but I'd personally recommend every 30K for a car that sees track time. Power steering fluid would also be an excellent idea, as would coolant if you've never done either one -- despite the fact that BMW considers both of them "lifetime".

I tend not to just do what the shop or iDrive says, because BMW's recommended maintenance intervals are too long for even regular service IMHO if you plan to keep your car longer-term, never mind for a car that sees track time. Much of my maintenance schedule is based on Mike Miller's Old School BMW Maintenance document.
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Last edited by jphughan; 06-17-2014 at 01:14 PM.
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