Hello all! This is my first post to this list. I don't know a whole lot about bmw's but i'm trying to learn.
Just got a wonderful '87 325i L6 2.5 convertible, black, with 136K miles. drives like a champ. It needs several important repairs, however, and I'm trying to find the best and most economical way to get them done. I don't know enough to do them myself.
The biggest problem with the car is the suspension. Especially on the right side. I hit a tiny bump and it feels like somebody's hitting the car with a ramming rod. I got it checked out and it turns out to need new shocks on the right side, and new inner and outer axle boots.
My problem is: I absolutely must fix the shocks and boots now, or could do more damage to the car. But I've just graduated school and have very little funds!
The local BMW mechanic (BlueRidge MotorWorks, Charlottesville, VA) wants $425 parts&labor for the boots, and $477 parts&labor for the shocks. 85% of this cost is the labor. Now, I found a local mechanic who knows his stuff about bimmers and will do the work for much less...but i've got to find the parts. So my problem is: how can I find reliable, exactly correct parts to deliver to this guy? BlueRidge won't help me out at all. I looked on advanceautoparts.com, under my car model, and found several options at different price ranges and different manufacturers, but don't know enough about it to know what's right, what's wrong, what's good, what's not.
For the axles and boots I found the following manufacters:
Monroe, KYB, Mcquay Norris.
Any advice? Would you recommend just shelling out the extra money to have the dealership do it? Or is there a way to obtain the correct parts, and if so, what should I look out for? Any other websites that I can check out? Any help would be greatly, greatly appreciated!
PS: Other problems, in case you're feeling even more generous
radiator (leaking), found this manufacturer:
Go/DAN (= TransPro?)
BlueRidge recommended that I change the timing belt at 4 years or 60,000 miles. It's been 4 years, but only 30,000 miles since it was changed. Am I okay? What should I look out for?