Cheap insurance: Why our BMW received a crank seal guard

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Update by J.G. Pasterjak to the BMW 435i project car
Apr 17, 2024 | BMW, BimmerWorld, Redline Bimmer, 435i

BMWs are 100% reliable, if you fix everything that breaks.

That sage advice comes from our old friend, Rennie Bryant of Redline Bimmer, a longtime South Florida repair shop.

This phrase really captures the reality that BMW generally builds stout, capable, well-engineered cars capable of lasting hundreds of thousands of miles–but that there are also some disasters waiting in the wings …

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Comments
Nathan JansenvanDoorn
Nathan JansenvanDoorn Dork
4/17/24 9:20 a.m.

If it makes you feel better, a friend lost a Subaru motor to this same failure mechanism. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
4/17/24 9:41 a.m.
Nathan JansenvanDoorn said:

If it makes you feel better, a friend lost a Subaru motor to this same failure mechanism. 

Nice to see other companies adopting cutting edge German engineering techniques.

300zxfreak
300zxfreak Reader
4/17/24 10:41 a.m.

And now you know why I no longer own a BMW.......or ever will again. Probably.

jerel77494
jerel77494 New Reader
4/17/24 10:44 a.m.

"BMW's are 100% reliable, if you fix everything that breaks." Sad, truly sad. How much are we paying for these cars again? At what point do you say it's just not worth it? 

We have a 2014 X3 X-drive and after 140k miles, the a/c whines, the transfer case has a leaking seal, the rear diff is toast and the rear wheel bearings are howling. The transfer case wouldn't be so bad except BMW won't let you replace the seal; you have to replace the transfer case. $7000!!!

And I'm typing this next to this headline: Surprise: Our BMW 435i broke a belt during its first track day.

Talk about irony!

 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
4/17/24 10:50 a.m.

In reply to jerel77494 :

Wait until you hear about the part that’s NLA for our E46 M3. (Still gotta write it up as we just got everything sorted.)

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
4/17/24 11:38 a.m.
jerel77494 said:

"BMW's are 100% reliable, if you fix everything that breaks." Sad, truly sad. How much are we paying for these cars again? At what point do you say it's just not worth it? 

We have a 2014 X3 X-drive and after 140k miles, the a/c whines, the transfer case has a leaking seal, the rear diff is toast and the rear wheel bearings are howling. The transfer case wouldn't be so bad except BMW won't let you replace the seal; you have to replace the transfer case. $7000!!!

And I'm typing this next to this headline: Surprise: Our BMW 435i broke a belt during its first track day.

Talk about irony!

 

Everything you said is true.

But it's a testament to just how fun and satisfying they are to drive that we put up with all this and still lust after them. 

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/17/24 1:35 p.m.
jerel77494 said:

We have a 2014 X3 X-drive and after 140k miles, the a/c whines, the transfer case has a leaking seal, the rear diff is toast and the rear wheel bearings are howling. The transfer case wouldn't be so bad except BMW won't let you replace the seal; you have to replace the transfer case. $7000!!!

Sounds like it's time for a Cayman-transaxle-style unofficial fix...

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/17/24 1:49 p.m.
Nathan JansenvanDoorn said:

If it makes you feel better, a friend lost a Subaru motor to this same failure mechanism. 

The parts Outback I purchased needed headwork because an accessory belt failed. The accessory belt took out the timing belt, which resulted in a bunch of bent valves. Good thing I only wanted the short block.

Except that I made the mistake of opening it up, so of course I found a bunch of bearings that were about an hour away from a catastrophic failure. Only part I ended up using from that car was the block.

Slippery
Slippery GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
4/17/24 1:50 p.m.
jerel77494 said:

"BMW's are 100% reliable, if you fix everything that breaks." Sad, truly sad. How much are we paying for these cars again? At what point do you say it's just not worth it? 

We have a 2014 X3 X-drive and after 140k miles, the a/c whines, the transfer case has a leaking seal, the rear diff is toast and the rear wheel bearings are howling. The transfer case wouldn't be so bad except BMW won't let you replace the seal; you have to replace the transfer case. $7000!!!

And I'm typing this next to this headline: Surprise: Our BMW 435i broke a belt during its first track day.

Talk about irony!

 

Call these guys, they probably have the seal you need. BMW did not make that tcase, its used in many cars:

https://cobratransmission.com


Also looks like BMW sells the seals and a new unit is $3800. You need a better indie mechanic.

DavyZ
DavyZ Reader
4/17/24 4:39 p.m.

My wife had a 2002 328i and I could not ever figure out how and why they make the cooling system so complex on these cars.  Just how many O-ring joints are there?? How much do they cost??  Why wouldn't a safe, thick, molded rubber hose do the same trick at a fraction of the cost??  I will admit that they are great cars to drive and even better when they are running well, LOL, but I think they are eventually doomed to the junkyard due to their prohibitive parts and repair costs, or to become drift machines from engine swaps.  

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