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Well this is not boat related, more just a discussion about cars. Be curious to hear how others get along with their's and costs of things like servicing - and no you can't just be clever and say you do it yourself, some of us are not that gifted to sort their brakes out in the car park at work over lunch Grendal lol.

it has been 4 months since I took ownership of the BMW X5 and in this time I have driven 6,328 miles. Bringing the cars mileage up to almsot 31,000. I've kept every fuel receipt but won't share how much that has cost because frankly I am worried by their growing thickness how much that might be lol.

I changed all four tyres just over a month ago and they have been performing very well, and have become a lot quieter after their initial 'run in' period. Also in damp conditions on the A14 when approaching  the large ongoing roadworks they proved how well they grip when an Arctic locked up in front of me with plumbs of tyre smoke and then promptly swerved off into the nearside cones to avoid going into the back of another Arctic which had slowed. I can only presume the lorry driver had been not concentrating, but I was able to avoid the ensuing situation in front of me with confidence, of course some credit has to go to the car and a smidgen to me. 

Mechanically the car has used no oil, only needed some coolant when I took delivery and since then has used none. Starts and goes perfectly and very smoothly come cold, damp or sunshine. I put some ZX1 into the oil, and use a premium Diesel (Shell V-Power or BP Ultimate)  I have experimented and it is noticeable that you do get a better MPG with the premium fuel over the bog standard supermarket fuels. I know these premium fuels have a more complex additive package and BP Ultimate at least has the highest Cetane rating of UK Diesel  fuel and combined they do seem to work. I'd not say there is a real 'performance' gain, though the engine seems to idle smoother and acceleration is more linear but it is the Norwich - London - London - Norwich run where you don't need to work out much with maths just a look at the fuel gauge on the premium fuel shows it has not drunk as much as compared to the supermarket versions. This goes a long way to cancelling out the higher pence per litre cost - so long as you shop around for the best prices, cos' boy do they vary! It also means the fuel system is being kept cleaner and running at it' optimum.

I've just booked it in for a full service and new front and rear brake pads and brake fluid change. (£1,042.00) I suspect I am going to find that the front discs need changing too, as there is a slight wear ridge, and BMW tend to have pretty slim tolerances on them with only a few millimetres of wear before new disc's are called for. I don't need front pads actually,  but I do need rear ones. I have chosen to change  both to keep things balanced and, well because that is how I am. I also want to keep things original because the initial bite and stopping power of the original pads are great, going to Kwick-Fit  etc saves big on cost but the composition of their pads are harder - last longer but don't give that same intimidate response and are harder on the discs too.

I do however have a new electrical issue - the electric tailgate.  It has decided to not want to open or close electrically, just some of the time though. Open manually and close manually and then it will open and close electrically just fine. Go on a journey and park up and it will still open electrically. Lock car and return to it and it won't open electrically. I also have a nearside Daytime Running Light Module issue that tells me there is a problem, despite the DRL's running as they should. I did a diagnostics check with CARLY for BMW which found some stored error codes for this unit so it seems to be going a bit flaky.

I have had a look around for other X5's - yeah I have rather fallen for this model -  but to get one a bit newer (say a 2017 model year) with the mileage I have and the factory options I have the pleasure of, sets them not far shy of £40,000. Same car, same model build (F15) and no guarantee that car will be issue free. Therefore I am sticking with 'Colin' for the foreseeable, not to mention the two year warranty I have should anything big go wrong which will help cover the cost of such (mind you at BMW prices maybe not).

I do like the pull and performance when you want it, coming off Roundabouts leading out and on to the straight away on the A11 for example, surging forward never fails to impress. Over 2 tonnes of car getting to 60 MPH in 6.2 seconds verges on comical, but none the less brings a smile to your face. However it has not all been happy times. BMW just are plan stingy with the basic things with their infotainment systems. The radio reception on DAB is touch and go, there are some trim squeaks from the rear boot area and the cream leather seats are not wearing too well and will need to have some colour matching work done to restore some worn patches. You also are constantly cleaning them if you wear blue Denim!

You can see why I prefer Norfolk..One of these days the wheels will be gone come morning.

BMW.thumb.jpg.3d61fee99f7003c73b3cc680e0916a8c.jpg

 

 

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Robin, you have over the past years had me glued to your blogs, you have inspired me to do things I never thought possible and have shared unselfishly information which has enhanced our holidays on the broads. Your passion for boating and the broads passed on for all to share is so appreciated.

It would appear that this enthusiasm is now spilling over into cars, so now I'm going to repay you with my advice and experience in this area.

Now, I know I struggle to get across the thoughts I'm thinking, but cars are a tool, everyone has one, they get us from A to B, we do not drive on loose gravel up mountain passes in sub zero temperatures, nor do we drive through muddy rivers in the outback and then go surfing.

The car industry would like us to think we do.

The car industry want your money and you see more than willing to hand it over, just slow down a bit.

I throw my hands up in the air sometimes, it's just a car and I would bet good money you couldn't tell the difference between fuels or tyres and even if you could, where were you going today? London to Norwich, Mavis did that in her 2003 Ford Ka, it took her 10 mins longer than you, and she has saved a couple of Ks in her back pocket.

I think / guess what I'm saying is cars are a waste of money, or rather, people waste money on cars.

 

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8 minutes ago, Wyndham said:

Mavis did that in her 2003 Ford Ka, it took her 10 mins longer than you, and she has saved a couple of Ks in her back pocket.

 

Yes, but her ears were bleeding when she got there. I should know, we have three early KA's...:default_biggrin:

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Hi Robin, first a question, given the age of the vehicle, does it still have a warranty in force and if not would it be better to use a BMW independent specialist. Second, most of the trade, including myself, use Brakes international for parts, if you look at their website that will give you a good indication of prices for your model. There are two premium makes of pads and discs, Mintex and Ferodo both will be as good as original equipment [OE] and a dam site cheaper. I use mintex because the pads are slightly softer, giving better brake performance but the wear of the pads is not quite as good. Times should be about half an hour ish for each corner. Watch other makes of pads there are loads of Indian and Chinese sourced out there.

Fuel, don`t be mislead by fuel manufacturers claims that their rocket fuel gives better performance than others its not quite true. There are several reports that have been published that dispute the claims.The main benefit of most fuel manufacturers offerings is that they have a lubricant added which gives added lubrication to the internal mechanicals in diesel fuel systems. In 2001 the EU decided that sulphur should be removed from diesel this removed some of the lubrication and this caused  several vehicle fuel systems to fail.The fuel manufacturers had to replace this with an additive to counter the problem. Supermarket fuel does not have the additive so lubricants ie redex should be used. I use lubrizol if I have to fill up in supermarkets.

electrical, sorry I hit things with big ommers so am no use on lectrics.

Paul

ps  can the right honorable member for Donny not do the brakes(use grease not grout) :default_biggrin:

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23 minutes ago, scaniaman said:

Supermarket fuel does not have the additive so lubricants ie redex should be used. I use lubrizol if I have to fill up in supermarkets.

This is an example of how the car industry have brainwashed people.

Given that myself, my wife , my daughters, their partners, my sisters, etc and the many many people I have to queue behind when I fill up at the supermarket, all use supermarket fuel without any problem why should an additive be used?

Rhetorical, no need to answer.

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while - yes I do do most of my work myself, I have one tip on diesel addatives - I use the cheapest asda fuel I can get - oh and lidls fuel addative.

every tank I use gets a 5 litre shot of sunflower oil (Lidls cheapest @£4.29 for 5 litres (asda and sainsburys have similar for £4.50 for 5 litres).

this is cheaper than diesel, and running with it gives me between 1.5 and 2 mpg better economy.

now I wont say your diesel can run on it, but my older volvo can, this may be because I dont have particulate filters, or have to put in ad blu or anything,and i did ask a forum expert who has run his volvo on pure vegetable oil before I tried it. I do this without any modifications to the car, and legally you can run up to 2500 litres of veg oil a year without tax consequences. does the engine run smoother with added lubricant - dunno, but its slightly cheaper and gets better economy.

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Just to echo what @scaniaman says I always used Brakes International as well. There are a lot of dodgy, fake brake pads on eBay (especially fake Mintex) but as you are not going to be doing the work yourself I don't suppose that matters. I would keep away from main dealers though. There are a lot of BMW independents about and the cost savings would be enormous. Also front and rear pads wear at completely different rates, I do a lot of miles (about 25k last year) and get through 3 or 4 sets of front pads to every set of rear so changing the fronts because the rears need doing is not so bad but next time the fronts wear out don't be tempted to change the rears 'to keep them even'. It doesn't work like that :)

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Hi Robin if your going to Cooper bmw Norwich they are well over the top price wise. I had a service done last week (oil and filters) which I booked on the bmw website and said it would be £250. When I got there they said it was classed as a major service! and would be £550 so a bit of hagling brought it down to £400 which I thought was ok. My car has done 35k miles although it’s a 330d 3 series says the front brakes are ok for 8k and the rear ok for 35kmiles so it seems a bit early for yours ? Is it showing up on the veichle status that they need doing.

Just going for 2 new tyres this morning another £450😫

John

 

 

 

 

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8 hours ago, LondonRascal said:

I do however have a new electrical issue - the electric tailgate.  It has decided to not want to open or close electrically, just some of the time though

A word of warning on electric tailgates. When we bought a new car a few years ago, it had an electric tailgate which was something I had not seen before. I used to get a buzz from clicking it open as I was walking back to the car with a loaded supermarket trolley. One time I had been to the local farm shop before the supermarket. Did my trick of clicking the tailgate open and - all my veggies etc tumbled out! I don’t do it any more............. :default_blush:

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for my volvo I always use partsforvolvosonline.com, either genuine volvo parts or their own brand manufactured to the original specs or better, also upgraded parts, for example on my v70 I pay the few pounds extra on front suspension wishbones (that include the ball joints) and get the police rated units - a heavy duty part, the brake pads and discs they have there are black diamond (performance parts) volvo original, mintex or their own brand that are manufactured by the company that manufacture for mintex and other leading brands, so their parts are always as good as original volvo or better. brake discs, generally I go through 2 sets of pads to a set of discs.

I can get original spec pads for £18 for a front set (on offer at half price at the moment) front and rear discs at £30 each and a set of rear pads for £26, so for under £200 I can replace the brake system all round (if I do the actual work myself, half an hour per corner so a couple of hours work sees me done. similar for a lot of other jobs on the car, oil changes, filters, even suspension arms / ball joints. 

I would normally replace a set of pads annually, and discs every other year, tyres - the car gets a set every year, but then I am doing more than 30,000 miles a year, so those types of expenses are expected.

electrical gremlins are the worse sort, it could be water ingress into a unit, or just a bad connection - many problems are just poor earth connections.

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Anyone servicing there own cars may use manufactures parts to cut down on the continual servicing. 

I have always been a firm believer of good tyres and brakes. Any dealer however operates at the best profit they can make so using cheaper parts maybe part of the norm for them, fast wearing pads a prime example.

Are their many car owners taken in by the claims of BP & premium fuel suppliers? The fuel savings claimed in their adverts would never pay for themselves for the additional price paid .

Regards

Alan

 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Wyndham said:

I throw my hands up in the air sometimes, it's just a car and I would bet good money you couldn't tell the difference between fuels or tyres and even if you could, where were you going today? London to Norwich, Mavis did that in her 2003 Ford Ka, it took her 10 mins longer than you, and she has saved a couple of Ks in her back pocket.

I think / guess what I'm saying is cars are a waste of money, or rather, people waste money on cars.

I'm with Wyndham on this one. I am, as you know, a bit of a petrolhead and absolutely love cars but I just can't get excited about mass-produced stuff.

The problem with cars is that generally they are pretty good at being cars these days and so the manufacturers have to work very hard to make people buy a new model every 3 years or less when in reality you just need to buy the right car, look after it and then keep it for 10 years.

We all know that certain countries have a tendency to produce unreliable cars, and that most of the German brands also gave up on reliability in the early noughties when they were haemorrhaging money. This was partly because their cars were lasting too long and thus not being replaced as often, and partly because of the vastly increased costs of meeting safety and emissions standards.

We also know that you can't trust a badge like you used to, particularly now that Nissan and Mitsubishi are basically just producing re-skinned Renaults and Mazda and Volvo are owned by the Chinese.

Unless you have the money to buy a hand-built supercar they're just not genuinely exciting, so as a daily driver you're best off with something solid like a Lexus, Toyota, Honda, Suzuki, Kia or Hyundai. No they're not considered as exciting, and that's because they may not have invested quite as much of your purchase price into marketing the product via TV ads, having the brand in a racing series, events etc etc. The money has been spent on developing the product, making it reliable and getting the basics right.

Robin has mentioned the 'BMW ecosystem' before and that's sort of the point. There is no 'BMW ecosystem'. It's a car. A metal box with four wheels, the drivetrain and some seats. Anything else is just marketing, and you're paying for it.

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I have an electric tailgate that has tried on more than one occasion to knock me out when Im putting things in the boot!

As for fuel, I have tried numerous retailers of Diesel fuel and logged the mileage achieved from quantity and after much workings out on paper I came to the conclusion that the difference wasnt worth the ink used in my pen! 

Same as tyres, there are certain budget brands I would avoid through my experience of them giving a poor ride but there many more that can be just as good (dare I say better) than the premium brands.  I particularly like ATS for tyres.  

I also wouldnt be paying main dealer prices for anything other than a car that had to be maintained to preserve a warranty from new, the prices are just OTT and there are many independants around who will be significantly cheaper.  

Why pay expensive prices when you dont need to.  

 

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12 minutes ago, dnks34 said:

Why pay expensive prices when you dont need to.  

But just don't go to Kwik-fit. They're not engineers, they're parts installers.

I wouldn't have them touch my car.

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Don’t touch quickfit with a very long pole. 

I asked my JLR people what fuel to use in Millie.Supercharged  V8, 575hp 600+nm girlie and They said and I quote:

“Ordinary 95 unleaded is fine no need for additives or premium fuel unless you’re going to race on the track”. Funnily enough that’s what my dad said after 40 years in the lubrication oil business.

I use cheapest available from same brand what I don’t do is go all over to save 2p. If you do that you’re likely to find the places that don’t store their fuel correctly sooner rather than later. Usually here it’s COOP, which is a Swiss supermarket brand.

Spend the money on nice air fresheners not fuel additives lol 

 

M

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1 hour ago, oldgregg said:

But just don't go to Kwik-fit. They're not engineers, they're parts installers.

I wouldn't have them touch my car.

I have only been to Kwik-fit twice, it took ages and on both occasions I was temped to take the tools off of them and finish the job. I use a local tyre fitter I have know for years. 

Tyres are one of the most important items on a car, it is the only thing between you and death, I have been in tyre bays when reps call in for budget tyres, the cheapest possible and these guys are doing 60,000 plus miles per year and mostly on motorways!

At least these days not many fit remolds or used tyres.

Regards

Alan

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I am not understanding this.

What is wrong with 2nd hand tyres?

What is wrong with "low budget tyres?

and what is wrong with the opinion of high mileage drivers?

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Reading all these posts I'm inclined to agree with them, as Wyndham says it's just a car and Oldgregg's post saying they are just parts installers I think that applies to most places right up to main dealers thats why they are now called fitters, mecanics seem to be a dying breed. I recently changed my car, had a Mazda5 for eight years it was three years old when I got it started to cost a bit and Mazda parts are dear. Looking at the different interpretations of what BMW stands for I would be reluctant to have one.

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22 minutes ago, ranworthbreeze said:

Tyres are one of the most important items on a car, it is the only thing between you and death.

 

15 minutes ago, MauriceMynah said:

What is wrong with 2nd hand tyres?

What is wrong with "low budget tyres?

and what is wrong with the opinion of high mileage drivers?

2nd hand tyres per se aren't a problem, nor are budget tyres.

What's important with any tyre is whether it's any good.

I have had cheaper ones that were brilliant, and a few years back bought a used car which was fitted with newish Pirelli P6000's (or 'ditchfinders' as they're known on car forums) which were absolutely lethal in wet conditions.

We swapped those 'premium' tyres for a set of cheaper Avons after both my wife and I had nearly crashed the car in the wet on separate occasions and the car was transformed...

Auto Express (and their sister brands) do an annual test of tyres whereby they put each product round a track in a set of controlled conditions and compare things like wet grip, dry grip, stopping distances etc etc. Of course it's a bit subjective, but I wouldn't buy anything that did badly in their testing. Funnily enough, the Pirelli P6000 didn't score well in the wet.

I personally don't buy part-worn or remoulds because you don't know the provenance of the actual tyre you're buying.

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A number of old tyre fitters in the past used to fit Avon tyres if they could not manage to sort out balancing issues.

A main dealer once wiped out a set of tyres on my old Mazda after altering the tracking, on seeing the inside edges of all of my tyres I had them checked out by Steve, they were 15 to 20 points out of calibration on the front wheels.

I tend to have Michelin and Hankook winter tyres on spare wheels.

Regards

Alan 

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ah tyres, as I do high mileages I get through a set of tyres every year, (or thereabouts) but I usually go for a mid range tyre (under £100) that has a good wear rating and a reasonable wet grip rating (I slow down when its wet) so usually its not a premium brand tyre.

as for kwikfit, and several other local garage chains - well I dont go to them any more - kwikfit fitted a new exhaust manifold to one of my cars- after I gave them the correct part number for the manifold they ordered the wrong one (they had the car sitting there) took over a week to fit it, and when I got it back there was a noticeable growl of an exhaust leak - they then passed it on its mot twice with the leak (the second time they passed it after I told them they were the ones that fitted it- they just slapped some exhaust putty on, passed it on the mot, and the putty fell off the next day, the third time they failed it on the exhaust leak they left when they fitted the part.

I gave up on another garage when they tried to tell me that they wanted to test the aircon for leaks with nitrous oxide (rather than inert nitrogen) it was at this point my BS detector fired off and I gave up on that garage, if their staff thought they tested aircon systems with nitrous oxide, I didnt want them going near my car.

nowadays if I need work doing on my car i take it to a little garage run by a couple of old guys on the industrial estate where I work, at least they know what they are doing and do a fair job for a fair price. (they also maintain most of the fleets of vehicles that run out of the estate, so are usually pretty busy.

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10 hours ago, Wyndham said:

This is an example of how the car industry have brainwashed people.

Given that myself, my wife , my daughters, their partners, my sisters, etc and the many many people I have to queue behind when I fill up at the supermarket, all use supermarket fuel without any problem why should an additive be used?

Rhetorical, no need to answer.

But answer I will, your family members are most likely using petrol i`m talking about diesel only. this is not a car industry problem its a fuel industry problem which mainly affects high mileage vehicles IE vans & trucks. As a former road transport engineer I used to buy upwards of 50000 litres of fuel per week and in 2001 fuel quality fell off  a cliff. Truck fuel pumps and injectors began failing because the sulphur had been removed from diesel.To counter this diesel fuel from most of the manufacturers had additives  mixed in. Supermarkets however did not & still do not put them in, leaving cars which do higher mileages and older cars at risk.If you subscribe to the consumers association they have on more than one occasion warned about fuel quality.  I fill up at Costco cash & carry which do have additives mixed in but still use lubrizol.

Paul

Has anybody noticed that Robin has yet again lit the blue touchpaper then gone to bed and left us debating. RASCAL by name RASCAL by nature methinks. :default_biggrin:

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A mate of mine used to have a Jetta with the dreaded FSI engine (known as Failure Seems Imminent), and it would mis-fire if fed supermarket petrol.

It was a known issue and obviously the fault is with VW who should never have sold that engine in the UK (or anywhere really) without reworking it, but it does show that all fuels are not equal.

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Just topped up with fuel and as advised by the garage who I called at this morning put in some Forte adatives as in their words supermarket fuel isn’t great.

John

 

 

 

 

E53D6124-6121-4268-BBBF-5AE7459E9FD2.jpeg

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anyone remember the incident with supermarket fuel (petrol) a few years back where it killed off a lot of the o2 sensors in the exhausts of cars, that got me a cheap volvo someone couldnt be bothered to change out the sensors and just got rid of the car, I swapped out the one from my car into the new car and it ran perfectly

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