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      11-26-2012, 09:29 PM   #1
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radiator/coolant change?

Do I need to have it changed? Dealer says that it's "diluted" but I'm wondering if this is necessary/good idea? Have you guys changed it before and at what intervals? I'm at 55k miles/88k kms.

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      11-26-2012, 10:37 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by tranquility View Post
Do I need to have it changed? Dealer says that it's "diluted" but I'm wondering if this is necessary/good idea? Have you guys changed it before and at what intervals? I'm at 55k miles/88k kms.

Thx.
Mike Miller (BMW CCA Technical Editor) in his famous Mike Miller's Old School Maintenance Schedule recommends a coolant flush every 2 years with 50% BMW anti-freeze and 50% distilled water. Note this is if you want to keep your car for a long time (i.e. 100k+) or you want to be kind to the next owner.
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      11-27-2012, 08:17 AM   #3
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My dealer also recommended a coolant flush recently. Perhaps it is better to have it done before this winter?
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Last edited by Asbjorn; 11-27-2012 at 08:29 AM.
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      11-27-2012, 12:14 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by morfinx View Post
Note this is if you want to keep your car for a long time (i.e. 100k+)
+1
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      11-27-2012, 09:05 PM   #5
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My dealer also recommended a coolant flush recently. Perhaps it is better to have it done before this winter?
I find it curious that a dealer recommended a coolant change when BMW calls it a lifetime fill. I thought they had to tow the company line.
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      11-28-2012, 05:21 PM   #6
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^The dealerships in my area claim that tranny and differential fluids are lifetime but they didn't mention anything about coolant though. :shrug:
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      11-29-2012, 11:08 AM   #7
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Quote:
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^The dealerships in my area claim that tranny and differential fluids are lifetime but they didn't mention anything about coolant though. :shrug:
If keeping the car I would definitely change the diff oil at 50K (easy job) and perhaps the transmission, especially the auto (but you need to follow the correct instructions and use the correct oil which is very very expensive)!! Lots of people suffering from cracked transmisson pans at x years, as they are made of plastic, and is across the model range.
Lifetime all as far as BMW are concerned is 100K but you have to put a gun to their heads to get them to admit it !!!!! No such thing as lifetime oil
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      11-29-2012, 11:07 PM   #8
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If keeping the car I would definitely change the diff oil at 50K (easy job) and perhaps the transmission, especially the auto (but you need to follow the correct instructions and use the correct oil which is very very expensive)!! Lots of people suffering from cracked transmisson pans at x years, as they are made of plastic, and is across the model range.
Lifetime all as far as BMW are concerned is 100K but you have to put a gun to their heads to get them to admit it !!!!! No such thing as lifetime oil
That's what I find annoying about BMW, saying things are 'lifetime', and then saying off-the-record something else...it really confuses because there is no true std.

Re diff fluid, did you mean 50K miles or kms?
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      11-30-2012, 03:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
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That's what I find annoying about BMW, saying things are 'lifetime', and then saying off-the-record something else...it really confuses because there is no true std.

Re diff fluid, did you mean 50K miles or kms?
Hi I live in a world of imperial miles lol, plus it is just a reference point. Doing the diff is so easy and cost effective to do, plus the peace of mind it is clean oil after running the car for a few years

Ps always remove the FILL plug first before you drain out the old !! many a poor soul has drained the diff/transmission and then found they cannot get the fill plug loose to refill.....doom

Last edited by raven333; 11-30-2012 at 04:02 PM.
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      11-30-2012, 10:50 PM   #10
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Hi I live in a world of imperial miles lol, plus it is just a reference point. Doing the diff is so easy and cost effective to do, plus the peace of mind it is clean oil after running the car for a few years

Ps always remove the FILL plug first before you drain out the old !! many a poor soul has drained the diff/transmission and then found they cannot get the fill plug loose to refill.....doom
Don't know how your Z4's are built for the UK, but here in the US there is no drain plug, just a fill plug. Because it's a "lifetime fill"! You have to suck out the old oil through the fill hole and then fill it through the same hole.
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      12-01-2012, 02:44 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jparnes1 View Post
Don't know how your Z4's are built for the UK, but here in the US there is no drain plug, just a fill plug. Because it's a "lifetime fill"! You have to suck out the old oil through the fill hole and then fill it through the same hole.
Not to argue the point about a drain plug as I have not checked, no need as yet, but I would be surprised, as with those vacuum pumps you do not get all of the oil out, which would make it incredibly messy if then have to drop the pan to remove any trace of metal shards (which may also be attached to the magnets).....
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      12-01-2012, 09:04 PM   #12
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Not to argue the point about a drain plug as I have not checked, no need as yet, but I would be surprised, as with those vacuum pumps you do not get all of the oil out, which would make it incredibly messy if then have to drop the pan to remove any trace of metal shards (which may also be attached to the magnets).....
Been there, believe it.
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      12-02-2012, 04:59 AM   #13
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Ok, a dealership is saying there is a difference between just draining the radiator and filling w/ new coolant vs draining it, actually cleaning it w/ some equipment, and filling it up w/ new coolant? What is the norm?
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      12-02-2012, 03:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jparnes1 View Post
Been there, believe it.
I hate to blow smoke at you, but just checked the latest BMW ETK parts manual
and there it is !!!!! The drain plug is on the bottom of the transmission pan and the fill plug is marked accordingly
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      12-02-2012, 04:26 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I hate to blow smoke at you, but just checked the latest BMW ETK parts manual
and there it is !!!!! The drain plug is on the bottom of the transmission pan and the fill plug is marked accordingly
Look back at my first post. I was referencing raven333's post regarding the diff, not the tranny. No drain plug on the diff.
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      12-02-2012, 05:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
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Look back at my first post. I was referencing raven333's post regarding the diff, not the tranny. No drain plug on the diff.
Hi ! you are correct there is no drain plug on the Diff, I agree with you I cannot believe that they did not put a drain plug in, I know for a fact that you do get some amounts of metal shavings in the diff., no where near what you get in the tranny but still some, and not being able to at least empty the diff completely is insane !!! Life time oils again a complete misnomer. Smoke now in my direction
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      12-03-2012, 09:36 AM   #17
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Quote:
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Hi ! you are correct there is no drain plug on the Diff, I agree with you I cannot believe that they did not put a drain plug in, I know for a fact that you do get some amounts of metal shavings in the diff., no where near what you get in the tranny but still some, and not being able to at least empty the diff completely is insane !!! Life time oils again a complete misnomer. Smoke now in my direction
No prob.
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      12-10-2012, 06:30 PM   #18
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Is a roadtest necessary after a coolant flush is done? I would have thought that this is not needed, but I dunno...

On a similar matter, are roadtests required when sparkplugs and brakes are changed?
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      12-10-2012, 09:50 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Is a roadtest necessary after a coolant flush is done? I would have thought that this is not needed, but I dunno...

On a similar matter, are roadtests required when sparkplugs and brakes are changed?
New brake pads should be ridden lightly for a spell because their fully braking ability is not immediate. However, new pads do not need to be bedded in.
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      12-11-2012, 02:58 AM   #20
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I see that new brake pads should be ridden lightly, but shouldn't they leave it to the customer instead of roadtesting it themselves? I just don't like unnecessary roadtests because I hate the idea of the potential for joyriders (it's just a Z4, not a Ferrari, but still, I can't stand other ppl unjustifiably driving my baby), unless a roadtest is absolutely necessary.

I have no idea about the need for roadtesting sparkplugs and also after a coolant flush? Any ideas guys?
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      02-04-2013, 06:17 AM   #21
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I just had my coolant changed at 42.000km / 4 years because I hope to keep this car long-term. The process was to first drain the radiator using the drain plug as seen on this video.

youku.com/

Then air pressure was added and the engine was turned on shortly to get out the last drops. Next they refilled with bmw antifreeze mixed with bottled drinking water 3:1.
I don't know why they didnt add more water. I believe 1:1 would have been sufficient. On the other hand I am happy they did not add any more of that non-destilled water...

Next they added pressure to the system and monitored the pressure over a few minutes to check for leaks. Finally they turned on the engine to see if it heated up normally.

I also had the fuel and air filters changed, and they cleaned my inlet manifold to remove carbon buildup.

Old air filter (which has been cleaned several times before using high pressure air)



New air filter



I also snapped a picture of a 3-series 335 convertible parked nearby. It seems that the anti-roll bars were beefed up a bit on the Z4.

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Last edited by Asbjorn; 02-04-2013 at 06:28 AM.
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      02-04-2013, 05:16 PM   #22
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New brake pads should be ridden lightly for a spell because their fully braking ability is not immediate. However, new pads do not need to be bedded in.
Any additional info on this? Is it because of the pad material BMW uses?

I was under the impression (from using Hawk and Carbotech aftermarket pads in the past) that achieving a good transfer layer on the rotor from proper break in was extremely important.
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