Friday, April 24, 2015 9:48:00 AM
After purchasing and driving home the Imola Red M Roadster, it was time to assess the service and repair work the car would need to be in optimal condition. The pre-purchase inspection from the dealer in Albuquerque revealed over $4,700 in needed work. And according to the service advisor this was the conservative quote which didn’t include the cost to perform needed scheduled maintenance. After taking into account the repairs suggested by the dealer and conducting my own inspection, I created a thorough list of needed services and repairs. My intention was to initially address the most important drivetrain service items, followed by a comprehensive overhaul. The cost of having the dealer perform these repairs would exceed several thousand dollars, but fortunately I have the tools and experience to properly perform these repairs at my home garage.
- Change motor oil, filter and drain plug washer: Mobil 1 5w30 synthetic, the factory approved motor oil and recommended oil weight (and my preference)
- Replace DINAN Cold Air Intake (CAI) cone air filter
- Replace spark plugs with factory approved Bosch Platinum 4+ plugs, inspect coils
- Flush brake fluid and clutch line, and bleed system
- Inspect belt tensioners and replace engine drive belts
- Replace fuel filter
- Replace motor and transmission mounts as both show signs of age with some cracking
- Replace driveshaft coupling due to cracks
- Replace the center support bearing (not visible from under car) as precautionary measure
- Replace power steering hoses due to oil seepage next to oil cooler
- Replace power steering reservoir and fluid
- Replace two transmission seals: there was slight oil seepage from the rear of the transmission. The dealer believes the leak stems from the rear main seal, however upon closer inspection the upper shaft seal appears to be leaking as well
- Replace manual transmission gear oil
- Replace shifter linkage bushings and clips to restore feel back to new condition
- Repair differential oil leak (reseal differential). The dealer believes the paper gasket for the cover is leaking, but oil seepage surrounds the side output shafts, leading me to believe the output seals need to be replaced as well
- Replace differential gear oil
- Repair broken rear sway bar mount on right rear trailing arm and reinforce with welded kit. One end of the DINAN sway bar is currently not connected to a trailing arm and also needs a new drop link
- Replace front and rear DINAN Koni struts and shocks. Originals are worn out
- Replace control arm, bushings and sway bar drop links to improve handling
- Repair rear subframe: a couple of the factory welds in the trunk are starting to separate. A common issue which needs to be addressed immediately before it worsens.
- Replace missing front plastic undercarriage pieces, including brake ducts
- Lubricate door hinges and inspect for wear or damage
- Replace Driver’s side door striker: Interior light not properly working in conjunction with driver’s door opening and closing. Driver’s side door striker appears to have slight damage to inside plastic hook.
- Replace front and rear brake rotors and inspect brake pads
- Rebuild brake caliper pistons on all four wheels, as right rear caliper makes a metallic sound under braking
- Metal polish the FISKE FM-5 wheels and DINAN Free Flow exhaust mufflers
- Repair or replace front M-bumper which is cracked at bottom. This would also be a good time to fill in the side marker wholes and smooth out the bumper
- Purchase a new open wrench for the trunk tool kit, as the original is missing
- Purchase a new air compressor/tire repair kit, as the original is missing from the trunk
- The outdated hardwired built-in radar detector needs to be removed from the steering column and front bumper
- Replace both seat bushings, as seats rock back and forth during hard braking
- Detail exterior (Interior leather was recently treated).
- Wash and detail undercarriage and wheel wells
- Polish headlights
Preparing for the Big Project
Due to the size of this project, before starting on the tear down and build up I made sure I had another car to drive so that I could garage this car for at long as I needed. I also planned to have the front bumper repaired while the mechanical work was being done. I had the use of my two car garage, a work bench and a mechanics lift, all of which made the project much more manageable. Some special tools needed to be purchased to install the transmission and differential seals, but otherwise I had every tool I needed, including a Motive power bleeder for the brake fluid. For ordering parts, most of them were purchased from Pelican Parts, my local BMW dealer or FCP Euro. Each vendor has distinct pricing for different OEM and aftermarket items, so it makes sense to order from multiple vendors. Replacement DINAN parts were ordered directly from DINAN in Morgan Hill. In the next segment I'll go into detail about each repair and service.