Three Ways You Can Become a Better Driver

Three Ways You Can Become a Better Driver - Motorwerkes - BMW Maintenance and Repair

Most drivers develop their driving abilities just enough to pass the tests and get a license, but we all know that doesn’t necessarily make you a model motorist. Skillful driving is about both safety and caring for your BMW, so you might want to consider a few upgrades to your habits.

Sharpen Your Defensive Driving Skills

The process of becoming a licensed driver teaches a lot of essentials when it comes to navigating the road safely. However, there’s another level of driving technique and proficiency that you don’t really get unless you pursue the right instruction. The right defensive driving course offers the chance to develop skills in evasion, braking, and preventative technique which can prove to be lifesaving in extreme circumstances. These skills are especially powerful when combined with the sharp handling and safety features of your BMW, which should not be relied upon to prevent accidents on their own.

Be Alert, Be Aware

A lot of us spend a significant portion of our lives driving. Because of this, we tend to tune out from what we’re doing when we’re at the wheel and pay attention to other things. However, one of the best ways you can become a better driver is by breaking this habit and remaining alert. This applies to how we pay attention to our surroundings as well as how we pay attention to even the smallest aspects of our driving technique. How much distance are you leaving between you and the vehicle in front of you? Do you stay conscious of your input and avoid abrupt movements or decisions? These are all important to bear in mind.

Stay Educated

Remember last week when we talked about the importance of staying informed about the maintenance needs of your BMW? The exact same principle applies in the department of driving techniques. One of the greatest things about having an experienced BMW certified technician to take your vehicle to is that they don’t just offer mechanical help. A good BMW expert is also a good driver and understands the importance of combining a great car with great driving habits. Ask your technician for tips that apply to your specific model and follow them closely, it’s a great way to stay smart as a driver!

The certified technicians at Motorwerkes may not be able to make you a better driver beyond offering some friendly advice, but when it comes to taking care of your BMW, we can do a lot more than that! Our team does it all, so call (403) 453-0269 to make an appointment today!

Keeping Your Leather Interior in Great Shape

Keeping Your Leather Interior in Great Shape - Motorwerkes - BMW Maintenance and Repair

One of the best feelings a driver can experience is stepping into a BMW with well-maintained leather upholstery. This is a big factor in everything from the comfort of your drive to the resale value of the vehicle. A mistake can compromise your interior, so let’s find out how to get it right.

Being Mindful

As with most aspects of car care, it’s always a good idea to check with the owner’s manual of your BMW before you do anything else. It may recommend or rule out certain techniques and products that are prone to cause damage to your upholstery. Interior leather surfaces can vary more widely than you think, from soft, smooth aniline to velvety nubuck and vinyl-like pigmented types. Does your upholstery contain any perforations? This will also affect your cleaning technique, as you want to avoid letting any fluids or gunk get trapped in these small holes. In short, know your interior well if you want to give it a proper detailing!

Technique and Materials

Regardless of what kind of leather your interior is comprised of, cleaning and conditioning it will almost always involve a few fundamental steps. Think of it as a layered process. You’ll first want to clear the surfaces of any abrasive materials such as grit and dirt in a way that doesn’t wear anything down. This can be done with careful vacuuming, clearing out small nooks using compressed air, and using microfibre towels to smoothly wipe unfriendly material away. A deep clean with the right saddle soap followed by proper conditioning and wipedown is often what follows, but the exact products will vary based on your particular interior.

The Summer Sun

Of course, the process of cleaning itself isn’t the only thing contributing to healthy leather upholstery. You also need to be attentive to everyday conditions. Obviously, avoiding things like contact with shoes and accumulation of dirt and debris is essential. However, many drivers neglect to properly protect their leather from the sun, particularly during summer. This is one element that can take a significant toll over time, especially when it comes to your steering wheel, dashboard, centre console, and even driver and front passenger seats. Be careful of where you park and be sure to use a high-quality sun shade on your windshield!

How is your BMW looking these days? If you want to keep your favourite vehicle in top condition, call (403) 768-3169 to make an appointment!

A Few BMW Repairs You Should Never Attempt Yourself

A Few BMW Repairs You Should Never Attempt Yourself - Motorwerkes - BMW-Certified Maintenance

A good vehicle is a long-term investment, and the better you take care of it, the more you’re getting for your money. Many drivers assume that saving in the short-term by attempting DIY repairs is usually a good call. Let’s look at some situations where this is definitely not the case.

Engine and Diagnostics

BMW drivers like us have a strong enthusiasm for automotive engineering and learning more about what makes a vehicle go. It can therefore be understandably tempting to try and diagnose an engine problem yourself. While the desire to get your hands dirty is admirable, engine diagnostics are best left to a BMW certified mechanic. This isn’t just a matter of being equipped with the latest approved tools and software, it’s a matter of preventing costly damage that can make your problem worse. So before you dig in to determine a potentially complex issue, go with a professional check-up instead!

Timing Belt

This may seem like a rather unassuming and nonthreatening item to replace, but it actually poses significant risk if attempted by an untrained hand. Naturally, it will need replacement at an interval recommended by your local BMW expert, and the replacement should take place in a timely manner so as to prevent further damage. However, don’t let this motivate you to do it yourself. As a procedure, it involves a lot of engine disassembly and reassembly. If you’re not experienced in the process, you could end up making a mistake that increases the cost of repair and replacement by a considerable amount.

Transmission and Suspension

Transmission repair is one of the most significant and also essential procedures that a vehicle can undergo. Since it requires expert handling of many different parts, not to mention the costs of the damage that a DIY procedure can lead to, this is one best left to a trained technician. The same goes for suspension repair, which can be dangerous both in the process (crawling under a heavy car) and in the aftermath (an unskilled repair could mean a very hazardous drive). Remember that the most experienced hand is always worth it in the end!

There are plenty of BMW maintenance procedures that are best left to a certified technician, not only for the sake of preventing costly damage, but also for the sake of safety. When in doubt, you can always give Motorwerkes a call at (403) 768-3165 to find out what your best options are!

How Does Winter Affect Your BMW’s Fuel Economy?

How Does Winter Affect Your BMW’s Fuel Economy? - Motorwerkes - BMW-Certified Maintenance

As we’ve discussed in a number of different contexts, winter weather affects many aspects of owning and operating your BMW. Aside from maintenance and driving technique, there’s also the issue of fuel economy. So how does this time of year affect your milage and what can you do?

Atmospheric Conditions

When temperatures drop, they take a toll on your transmission, the viscosity of engine oil and other fluids, the time it takes your BMW to get to operating temperature, your alternator’s ability to charge your battery, and more. The system is further stressed by the power it requires to produce warm air, heat your seats, and other functions commonly used during this season. As if that weren’t bad enough, lower temperatures mean denser air, leading to increased aerodynamic drag. All this adds up to more fuel used and less overall efficiency.

Road Conditions

A vehicle’s fuel efficiency is also significantly dependent on the conditions of the surfaces it travels on. Build-up of snow, slush, ice, and road salt as well as weather damage to asphalt all mean irregular surfaces, a considerable increase in resistance, and a decrease in speed relative to fuel consumption. Understandably, slower and more cautious driving takes place once winter is underway, as it very well should. The side-effect of this caution is, however, lower fuel efficiency. And don’t forget, your tires lose pressure with every decrease in ambient temperature!

Addressing the Problem

As you can see, there is a pretty wide range of things working against your BMW on cold days as far as mileage is concerned. Fortunately, there are also ways of compensating for their effects. As is often the case, it’s attentiveness and all the little things that come together over time. Keep your BMW parked in a garage when possible to avoid a chilled engine, avoid using your heat, defrosters, and seat warmers more than you need, don’t take frequent short trips, and keep an eye on that tire pressure. If you need more specific milage tips according to your vehicle, feel free to ask a certified BMW technician!

Boosting fuel economy may seem like a slow endeavour, but good habits can add up to a big difference for your BMW and your wallet over time. If you’d like to improve performance while saving on costs, get in touch with Motorwerkes at (403) 768-3165 and we’ll be happy to help!

Winter Driving Technique: Myths and Misconceptions

Winter Driving Technique: Myths and Misconceptions - Motorwerkes - BMW-Certified Maintenance

Taking care of a vehicle during winter involves a lot of attention and care. However, it’s not just about how your BMW runs or looks, it’s also about how you operate it. Unfortunately, there are quite a few winter driving myths out there to address! Here are just a few.

Cruise Control

While it may be convenient to use cruise control during that long winter trip to see family during the holidays, handing over this amount of control to your vehicle is very unwise in low traction situations. If an obstacle presents itself and you need to brake and make a sudden adjustment to your course, having the cruise control engaged means you’ll likely be unable to regain control in time. What’s more, your BMW’s cruise control could apply automatic acceleration at a hazardous moment, such as during a skid, leading you to hydroplane. The bottom line? During winter, cruise control means you lose control!

The Superiority of SUVs

Many drivers are led to believe that SUVs provide the absolute best in safety and performance everywhere you drive them. BMW SUVs are indeed outfitted with plenty of excellent features that improve stability and control when navigating irregular terrain off-road. However, it’s a mistake to assume that an SUV will give you optimum safety on paved roads that have been overcome with ice during winter. In this regard, they’re not necessarily better than a well-engineered sedan. Never assume that the type of vehicle you use is a replacement for smart, attentive driving at this time of year.

Skidding and Braking

There are few things more nerve-racking than the moment you realize you’re starting to lose control of your vehicle on a slick road. Drivers will deal with this situation differently depending on what source they’ve gotten their information from. As expected, there are plenty of misconceptions. For one thing, it’s often recommended not to engage the emergency brake, or to brake at all, as this can make the situation much worse. Turn into the skid, gently accelerate, and keep your eyes on where you want your vehicle to go. Drive with attention and care so that you can keep your vehicle, yourself, and your passengers safe!

Whether you’re maintaining your BMW or getting better at driving it, owning a performance vehicle is an adventure we’re just as inspired by as you. That’s why the Motorwerkes team will always provide the best BMW-certified maintenance. Call us at (403) 768-3165 today!