Proper Alignment is VERRY Important! - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

 
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#1 (permalink) Old 12-23-2005, 09:45 AM
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Thumbs up Proper Alignment is VERRY Important!

Here is what happened:
  • I installed M5 front & rear stabilizer bars on my 1999 540/6 last June.
  • Although installing the front sway bar required removal/reinstallation of most front suspension pieces, I chose not to get an alignment afterwards because everything "felt" ok.
  • I finally got Firestone to do an alignment in mid-November.
  • Between mid-November and mid-December, the outer tread blocks on the front tires wore from 7/32" down to showing cord! Firestone's "alignment" was obliterating my tires at a furious rate!! The steering wheel had to be canted 4 degrees right in order to go straight! I asked for and obtained a refund from Firestone for the "lifetime alignment" contract, which cost $139.
  • I replaced the now-unsafe front tires with new ones & immediately went to the local BMW dealer, and paid them $110 for a (one-time) alignment.
  • The dealer did it totally by the book.
  • Wow - what a difference! My 540 finally feels FIRMLY planted on the ground and tracks straight!
Conclusion: Having an alignment done to BMW specifications and in accordance with procedure (weights on seats, new lock-nuts, etc.) is not cheap and is a fussy affair, but it is well worth it!! Sort of a microcosm of BMW cars in general, eh?
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<span style='colorurple'>Eric S.</span>
2006 Honda Odyssey EXL-RES
2006 Honda Accord V6 EX-L Sedan
1999 BMW 540i 6-Speed (Sold to M3UOND on 9/21/06)
1991 Honda Civic Si - Occasional Beater
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#2 (permalink) Old 12-23-2005, 03:34 PM
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#3 (permalink) Old 12-23-2005, 09:29 PM
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Eric
I would have asked Firestone to share the cost of the new tires !!!
Looks and sounds like it was their mistake....no?
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#4 (permalink) Old 12-24-2005, 04:02 PM
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I agree, but I try to pick my battles...

Quote:
Originally Posted by billB
Eric
I would have asked Firestone to share the cost of the new tires !!!
Looks and sounds like it was their mistake....no?
I totally agree with your point, but those tires had served many miles up to this point. I was figuring on another 5000 miles out of them, which is why I'd had Firestone rotate them left-to-right (to put the faster-wearing outside shoulders on the inside). If you look at the remainder of the tread in the photo, the tires weren't exactly new, but had at least that much in them.

And it cost me $50 for their re-mount and re-balance of those two front tires. As I said to the guy there, I could have "demanded" more, but I really only wanted my $139 back for the lifetime alignent since it was obvious they could not fulfill such a contract. I felt I was being very reasonable and apparently so did they. Sometimes you just want to cut the ties and move on....

<span style='colorurple'>Eric S.</span>
2006 Honda Odyssey EXL-RES
2006 Honda Accord V6 EX-L Sedan
1999 BMW 540i 6-Speed (Sold to M3UOND on 9/21/06)
1991 Honda Civic Si - Occasional Beater
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#5 (permalink) Old 12-24-2005, 04:35 PM
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Sometimes you just want to cut the ties and move on....
I did it many times.....
1. Reminds me with the quick lube place when they over torqued the famous hallow drain plug on my car..1/2 of it wind up inside the pan!
2. When they jacked it up right at the bunn of the rear axle; cracking the upper carrier.....Had to change the whole subframe.
3. A tow truck driver/owner !! placed his hooks on the rear control arms destroying both

Well the third one? I was not a nice guy...The repair did cost him $450

I am glad you took that decision
Regards
billb
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#6 (permalink) Old 12-27-2005, 12:29 PM
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Hello all,

I agree with Eric... when it comes to alignment, the stealer is the the best bet.

Transmission work/pan replacement, I would let the dealer do it next time! I just had pan replaced on my 840ci and the guys put the wrong fluid. I hope not to have a problem later on. A while ago, Bill B posted a list of the the proper fluids depending on car models and transmissions. According to it and some other research I did, I came to the conclusion the wrong fluid was used. The shop assure me that it's the same thing and not to worry about it... We'll see!

LOS

Here it is what they put in it...

DEXRON II- SYNTHETIC
83522-30104

According to BMW and the transmission maker it should be SHELL brand....

Last edited by LOS; 12-27-2005 at 12:34 PM.
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#7 (permalink) Old 12-27-2005, 06:43 PM
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LOS -

Good hearing from ya! Sorry, but I know next to nothing about the BMW automatic trannies. Good luck with your situation.

About the only thing I've been able to confirm is that Castrol says its Mercon V can be used for all applications requiring Dexron III (i.e. E39 power steering system). Still, I managed to buy a couple of quarts of Mobil-1 synthetic ATF that meets all specs for all trans fluids and plan to replace the Castrol Merc-V with the Mobil at some point by flushing it through my power steering system....

<span style='colorurple'>Eric S.</span>
2006 Honda Odyssey EXL-RES
2006 Honda Accord V6 EX-L Sedan
1999 BMW 540i 6-Speed (Sold to M3UOND on 9/21/06)
1991 Honda Civic Si - Occasional Beater
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