Used 1994 525i - 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 03-11-2005, 07:58 PM
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Hello all, I'm new to the forum, and would like to ask a purchase question. Here goes, I am thinking of buying a used 525i with 244k miles. Is the anything out of the ordinary that I sould look at before buying a high mileage BMW. Thanks in advance, John
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#2 (permalink) Old 03-11-2005, 08:31 PM
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A car is a car is a car.

I have a 530 with 275k on it and it runs like a watch. I looked at a 94 325is 5speed with 84k on it and it was THRASHED.

You need to do the normal things, above all else, DRIVE IT. Brake good? Run good? All the gears work? Steer good? At all different speeds? Look for control issues like vibration, braking, suspension over bumps. Get out and grab all the wheels with your hands and shake them HARD, side to side, top to bottom. Listen for any strange "clunks" and notice how much play is evident (should be very little unless you weigh 200+lbs like me!).

With that many miles on it you have two possible scenarios: 1) the car needs practically everything replaced OR 2) it's had lots of stuff replaced already (likely). It's your task to determine where between the two a particular car happens to lie.

Look underneath it. Leaks? Anything with 244k probably has leaks on it but if it's leaving puddles behind every time you pull up to a stop sign it's probably a good idea to either pass the car by entirely OR plan on at least replacing a bunch of seals.

Clunk at acceloration? Driveline problems or rear axles are common on high mileage *anything*. Just replaced a driveline in my 86 535 to the tune of $600 after it was all said and done.

I own three high mileage BMWs (had five) and two things I look for in particular...

1) tire wear can indicate lots of problems. Tires should be fairly evenly worn. If it has brand new el-cheapo tires on it I get suspicious.

2) I like a DIRTY engine compartment. If it looks like months or years of dust and such it's easy to see where leakage problems have been (look for all four vital fluids: brake fluid, power steering fluid, coolant and engine oil). If an engine looks completely spotless... like it's just been steam cleaned... I get suspicious.

I don't think there is anything in particular specifically wrong with the 525 unless you consider it's power. (History fun fact! In the 70's BMW actually exported to the states a 518 as their answer to the "gas crunch"!)

1992 325ic *sold*
1984 320 *sold*
1986 325 5sp sedan, 175,000 Great car!
1986 535 5sp sedan, 172,000 Awesome!
1978 530 AT sedan, 275,000 still runs and drives
1997 740il AT sedan, 125,000 Like a newly wed!
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#3 (permalink) Old 03-11-2005, 08:52 PM
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244k is alot... check carfax first to see if there are any problems. btw,what year and how much $$

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#4 (permalink) Old 03-11-2005, 09:17 PM
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Thanks for the replys, it is a 1994 525i for $3900.
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#5 (permalink) Old 03-11-2005, 09:31 PM
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the price isnt that bad... just take it to a mechanic to do a compression test, and other tests... it will cost around $50, but it is def. worth it

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#6 (permalink) Old 03-11-2005, 09:52 PM
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$3900 to me is a straight car with good interior and no obvious mechanical problems, if it has that many miles on it. Smoke out the exhaust, a knock in the block, slipping gears and you could easily bury another $3900 to make it road worthy.

Don't know where you live but $3900 in my neck of the woods buys a LOT of high mileage BMW. Don't be afraid to shop around.

1992 325ic *sold*
1984 320 *sold*
1986 325 5sp sedan, 175,000 Great car!
1986 535 5sp sedan, 172,000 Awesome!
1978 530 AT sedan, 275,000 still runs and drives
1997 740il AT sedan, 125,000 Like a newly wed!
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#7 (permalink) Old 03-12-2005, 07:53 AM
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Thanks to all for the advice, the car has no interior problems, as far as I can tell, the engine and trans work great. The concern that I have is that the check engine light is on and the srs light is on. The ac does not work, the compressor is turning, yet no cold air. Are there some common problems with the ac system on these cars? Thanks again, John
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#8 (permalink) Old 03-12-2005, 08:37 AM
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that is going to be more problems than it is worth.

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#9 (permalink) Old 03-14-2005, 05:41 PM
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Agree with Ciscokid above. It may be not worth the trouble. Shop around.

I had the same problem with my AC. Check the Auxiliary cooling fan (it is an electric fan in FRONT of the radiator). Fan (and the required resistor) are not cheap. Installation is not particularly easy either.

'95 525 175K
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#10 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 03:15 AM
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Originally posted by 2MuchTorque@Mar 14 2005, 03:41 PM
Agree with Ciscokid above. It may be not worth the trouble. Shop around.

I had the same problem with my AC. Check the Auxiliary cooling fan (it is an electric fan in FRONT of the radiator). Fan (and the required resistor) are not cheap. Installation is not particularly easy either.

'95 525 175K
[snapback]311349[/snapback]
If you can see problem's already, don't get it. At least around here, that's too much $$$. If you still want it, get it checked out for about 50 bucks. Rule of thumb, take the kbb price, take the cost that it would take to get it repaired, subtract the repair price from the kbb price. After that, I would offer an even lower price to start the negotiations. From what I've experienced, if the car's got some obvious prob's already, the owner just wants to ditch it and it's not worth the cost of fixing it first.
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