7 March 2016
With warmer weather comes a great opportunity to take your BMW for a trip out on the open road. Whether you’re running solo or going with friends or family, it’s critical that you keep your vehicle in the proper condition for the journey. Here are a few things we like to look out for.
Oil and Fluid Levels
How long has it been since your last oil service? Do you follow the Motorwerkes recommendation of 5,000-8,000 km intervals? Road trips can add on a considerable amount of extended strain to your engine if everything isn’t running smoothly. Depending on the distance, you should also be prepared for the possibility of having to refill your oil in the middle of the trip, so taking some with you may be advisable. After considering the oil, your brake and wiper fluids as well as coolant levels should be next on your list.
Brakes and Tires
Even if your brake fluid has been checked, that still leaves the condition of the brakes themselves. The importance of this in terms of safety goes without saying, especially with all the braking you’ll need to do in certain environments. Similarly, knowing the condition of your tires is imperative. Have you switched to a summer set as recommended in our blog on seasonal tires? Be sure to get this done and to keep your pressure within manufacturer-recommended range. Don’t forget that checking pressure at a lower temperature will give you a more accurate reading!
Battery and Other Components
When it comes to your battery, cables should be firmly in place with connections in tact and there should be no signs of corrosion. If you spot that unsightly residue on the cable clamps and terminals, it can be dealt with using a toothbrush and baking soda or with a specialized terminal brush. However, depending on its age, having your battery tested may be a good idea. Continue to cover your bases by checking your wipers, all lamps, and other small components. Then you’ll be able to enjoy those long stretches of road with true peace of mind!
Keeping your BMW in the best condition always makes for a better road trip, keeping you and your passengers both safe and comfortable. To schedule an inspection and for further advice, give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 768-3162 today!
1 February 2016
If our earlier blog on performance upgrades got you thinking about how you can amp up the power of your BMW, you might be wondering where your upgrades will be coming from when you get them done at Motorwerkes. For this week’s blog, we’d like to fill you in on how it all works.
An Authorized Active Autowerke Dealer
Motorwerkes is proud to be an authorized dealer for Active Autowerke, a BMW performance parts manufacturer with over three decades of experience. It means that we can provide you with some of the highest quality performance and tuning technology available, combining the sophistication of their manufacturing with the expertise of our certified team. Whether it’s a software tune or a custom build like the example M3s listed on our site, their the reliability of their engineering help us deliver the results you need.
What Do You Have in Mind?
You might already have a general sense of what kind of upgrade you’re looking at for your BMW. The trick is choosing the one that’s just right for you and your model. Browsing Active Autowerke’s site to familiarize yourself with the possibilities is a great way to do this. One aspect of upgrade work that they’ve really made a name for themselves in is software. ACTIVE-8, for instance, combines the convenience of the piggyback tuning approach with a highly competitive 64-bit processor that stands up to TUV testing standards like no other module out there. And with just one look at their shop, you’ll see that software isn’t the half of it!
While Active is our go-to supplier for the parts and software that will amp up the power of your BMW, Motorwerkes understands that the world of upgrade manufacturing is a big one! If you have an upgrade or project in mind that requires parts not supplied by Active, we’d be happy to provide our signature quality of service and make that installation happen. However, our commitment to Active Autowerke means that you’ll need to source and bring in the parts yourself. In either case, your BMW will be in the right hands when it’s with us!
Looking for advice on how to get the power you need and where to get the necessary parts? We’re more than happy to advise you on this and many more services! Get in touch with us at (403) 768-3166 today and find out why we’re still Calgary’s favorite BMW specialists.
25 January 2016
In addition to all the technical help, you’re probably aware that we love to dig into BMW history and trivia. Excluding the facts covered in our previous blogs, here’s some fun assorted info that you may not already know!
The Signature Grill
The “kidney” grill that BMW’s vehicles have become known for was first introduced in 1933 on the BMW 303. It has changed slightly in appearance since then, and was one of the company’s many early efforts in pioneering aerodynamic vehicle design.
The Headquarters Building
You may know that the headquarters building located in Munich was modeled after a four-cylinder engine, or even that it was finished in time for the 1972 Olympic games. However, few aficionados are aware that the branding of the building had to be removed during the games to comply with the International Olympic Committee’s rules on product placement.
The April Fool’s Day M3 Pickup
One of BMW’s most impressive April Fool’s Day jokes was the infamous M3 pickup. The fusion between pickup truck and classic M3 structure may have been a prank, but the vehicle is in fact fully operational and boasts a number of impressive specs. Along with horsepower matching its M-series relatives, these include a 450 kg load capacity and even a drag coefficient in league with the M Coupe.
The Development Codes
One particularly unique feature of BMW’s approach to manufacturing is their development code system. For much of the company’s history, every model has been designated a codename consisting of a letter (E, F, or G) followed by consecutive numbers. “E” was the first letter used for these codes and stands for “entwicklung,” the German word for “development.”
The Mercedes Rivalry
BMW was quite close to bankruptcy in the late ‘50s due to a number of factors, including the postwar vehicle market and difficulty adhering to design trends. Mercedes attempted an aggressive takeover of BMW at its most vulnerable moment, before they were saved by collaborative investment from a wide range of sources including its workforce. Things were really back on track by 1959 when a majority share was purchased by German businessman Herbert Quandt.
There will always be more to learn about BMW, whether it’s about the vehicles themselves or the company that creates them! To learn about the needs of your vehicle, give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 768-3163 today!
18 January 2016
Here in Alberta, purchasing winter tires for your BMW is one of the most important components to responsible driving on icy and snowy roads. Combine the tips in our previous blogs on winter maintenance and winter driving with this brief guide to winter tires!
The Importance of Winter Tires
Winter tires can sometimes be a bit of an investment. However, if you choose the right ones, it’s an investment in your safety and the safety of others. It also goes without saying that a set of winter tires is likely cheaper than the repairs that you’ll need after a collision. Overall, driving in cold conditions is at its safest when all of the proper steps have added up. Winter tires are the upgrade that will complement your smart driving and knowledge of your vehicle to make for great driving even on the coldest days.
How They Work
There are a few clever approaches to engineering that make good winter tires as effective as they are. Generally speaking, they are optimized for a greater degree of grip in low-traction environments as well as resilience in lower temperatures. Because the rubber compound is a bit softer, you’re getting better traction because the material can remain flexible in response to the road. Put this together with greater tread depth and careful design of the siping and you have a considerable improvement in winter handling. Don’t use them year-round though, as they’re not designed for higher temperatures!
Things to Keep in Mind
It’s a good rule of thumb to stick with the original equipment specs and, more specifically, avoid undersizing the tires and overwhelming them with the weight of your vehicle. The loss of tire pressure with dropping temperatures should also be kept in mind. When it comes to the decision between run-flat or regulars, we see that run-flats come standard on most BMWs because much of the engineering of the vehicle is designed specifically for their use. They’re also good for avoiding the pain of changing tires in the snow. Some may find, however, that they do not offer the longevity or traction of regulars. This and other considerations will vary widely, so getting a personalized opinion from a specialist is always a good move.
Need more help optimizing your BMW for the best and safest winter performance? Motorwerkes is a trusted team in Calgary that can help you with your BMW motor vehicle. Get in touch with us at 403-768-3168 to see what we can do for you!
18 January 2016
Despite the ingenuity of our favorite BMW vehicles, we can’t forget that they are complex pieces of machinery which are mass-produced at a rapid pace. As such, small mechanical flaws are bound to appear. The subject of this week’s blog is a particularly common one you may have experienced yourself.
If you own an X5 powered by an N62 or N63 engine, you may have noticed smoke emitting from the tailpipe in greater thickness than is normal. It may be white or blue in hue, and may show up most often as a puff during acceleration after a long idle. Keep in mind that different thicknesses and colors of smoke emission may occur in a variety of vehicles, so if you’re not sure how closely your issue fits this profile, further research or a professional smoke test may be in order. These symptoms aren’t necessarily unique to the N62 and N63 engines, but BMW owners and mechanics have found it to occur very consistently among them.
What Causes It
The causes of the issue are related primarily to your oil and your crankcase vent valve. More specifically, it is due to a manufacturing flaw in the quality of the valve seals. When engine temperature rises, the valve seals harden. This causes oil to get by and eventually burn, producing the smoke. In addition to the more obvious symptoms, this leads to a significant problem in oil consumption which can lead to further complications down the line if things aren’t taken care of promptly.
How to Solve It
Depending on how long the problem has gone untreated, the fix may be quite simple or involve a few extra steps and considerations. In general, however, a valve repair is necessary as your immediate action. Then you’ll need to consider the frequency of your oil servicing. Keep your interval at about 5,000 to 8,000 kilometers between each oil change. Make sure you let the specialist know of any other issues that have cropped up and describe the symptoms with as much detail as possible. This will ensure better service and a longer life for your engine!
Motorwerkes is dedicated to keeping you informed on the most current and noteworthy info regarding your BMW, not to mention providing the utmost in repairs, upgrades, and more! You can get details on our services by calling us at (403) 768-3163 today.