The key to maintaining the life of your BMW is to have it serviced routinely, whether it's according to specific BMW factory scheduled guidelines or on a condition based service. In doing this, you’ll prolong the safety and reliability of your BMW.
Factory Scheduled Maintenance vs. Condition Based Service – What’s the difference?
Your BMW has a specific recommended maintenance schedule that should be performed when your BMW hits a certain mileage or time interval. This is called Factory Scheduled Maintenance (FSM). Not all BMWs require the same schedule, so it’s important to know your exact model.
In newer BMW automobiles, a Condition Based Service (CBS) system is used. This system creates individualized service requirements based on data collected from the vehicle using sensors, driving conditions and time intervals. It details what items need to be replaced or serviced. It is both flexible and economical for serviceable items and has the benefit of being tailored to your driving habits.
The Importance of FSM and CBS
FSM and CBS are important for several reasons, including:
- Protection of your investment – you purchased it, now protect it.
- Save money – prevent high costs later by completing service repairs now.
- Hold value – helps to preserve the resale value of your vehicle.
- Protect environment – cleaner air and lower emissions from your vehicle help the environment.
- Increase vehicle safety – pinpoint safety problems and fix now before they possibly lead to an accident later.
What Services are performed during FSM and CBS?
Typical FSM services include the following:
- Oil & filter change
- Air filter replacement
- On-board diagnostic system checks & resets
- Fluid inspection & top-off
- Brake & tire inspection
- Windshield wiper blade inspection & replacement
- Ignition system
- Cooling system
Typical CBS includes the following sensor based and internally calculated items:
- Engine oil filter
- Cabin air filter
- Wear on the brake pads
- Brake fluid condition
- Spark plug condition
- Coolant replacement
When to Take Your BMW in for Service
Niles Todd, owner at Portland Motor Works, who routinely uses CBS requirements for his BMW and Mercedes clients, stated, “in the past we would do an inspection service every 15,000 miles, which included a tune-up. In between those inspections we would perform oil and filter change, which were mileage based. Technology has improved and things are so efficient now that we can extend the periods of time between workshop visits.”
At Todd’s shop in Portland, Oregon, he recommends a visit at least every 6 months for an oil and filter service, in addition to a full inspection. That way they can inspect your vehicle twice a year and possibly catch any small problems before they get costly.
“We work in concert with the CBS requirements to protect the customers investment, says Todd, “while at the same time taking full advantage of the savings condition based service offers the driver.”
To ensure the smooth operation of your BMW, take it to your local independent BMW service facility, their expert BMW mechanics know your vehicle best.
A special thanks to Niles Todd at Portland Motor Works in Portland, OR for his help in preparing this article. As BMW repair experts in Portland, Todd’s shop recently has expanded their servicing to include Audi, VW and Mercedes.