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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I got my car a couple years ago and frankly I really like the way it drives. Last year I had to replace all the O2 sensors but my local shop was able to do that without it costing a fortune. Before that they replaced the serpentine belt ( I think there was 2 or them).

Anyway, earlier this year the SES light came on and it was diagnosed as the secondary air injection problem, which after a lot of research looks to me like an annoyance more than a problem. My local shop suggested upgrading to an after market chip which will clear the code. I REALLY hate seeing that light as I drive which has caused me to pretty much drive my truck instead.

I'm scheduled to take it in in a couple days for the annual inspection and I've asked my local shop to look up that chip again to fix the SES light so i can decide whether to do it. I think they mentioned that there was a slight trade off in doing that. The car may be a little more sportier in terms of driving. I kind of like leaving cars stock as much as possible.

My car is a silver 2000 with the black interior. I bought it with 148,000 miles on it, I think I have about 169,000 on it now.

On other observance is that in the summer whilst trying to negotiate the 38 mile long parking lot called I-95, I can't really run the AC. Or maybe I can, it just seems that if parked in stop and go traffic I can watch the oil temperature go up slightly, and then the water temperature go up slightly...which causes me to freak out and turn off the AC. I have a real aversion to temperature gauges that go past 12 o'clock on the dial. Anyone else have that occurrence? Is it normal or should I get it checked out. If I am at speed all the temps are normal.

So anyway there you have it. Am I better trying to sell it with the SES light on and explaining the issue or biting the bullet and adding the after market chip?

I've had a could of other BMW's and they all seem to have problems with error lights of one fashion or another coming on which is one reason I am thinking about selling this one. My concern is fixing the SES light and having another pop up in a couple months. The only problem is what in the heck would I replace this M5 with...I do really like the car.


Oh dear... I seem to have posted this in the wrong section
 

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I would keep it. As you said, you don't know what to replace it with and you really like it.
Many well-known aftermarket tune will get rid of the secondary air system plus the benefit of better performance.
How is the maintenance on it? Cooling system and coolant is fresh?
 

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Oh, is the SES light supposed to be OFF? Figured it was always on by default...at least mine is :eek7:

Unless the issues you mentioned really bother you, I would consider keeping it. I have similar issues from time to time and get them fixed eventually. But until something really strikes me as a good replacement, I do not have the intention to get rid of the car. I wont claim, as some do that I will never sell it. Most who do say that sell it eventually, so they are all LIARS! :p But there are a small percentage of people who do keep them forever.

The little things shouldn't force you to sell. Its part of owning an older high mileage sports sedan. But if it becomes a money pit that you are not willing to fund, then its probably time to move on.
 

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It sounds like your car is healthy, just need few minor work to be perfect daily. I would keep the car and invest in a tune that can increase performance while turning off the code for secondary air system.

For oil temperature and water temperature, I would make sure there are no debris around radiator which can limit radiator ability to regulate the temp and make sure everything is working with fresh coolant. M5 cooling system is pretty robust compared to lesser trims like 540i. I would also make sure the clutch fan is good. Most of all, those are cheap repairs/maintenance.
 
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I would keep the car since you claim you like it. Those are minor problems nothing major. When i first purchased my car I had the SES light secondary air alarm. I used the board.....did my research and found out it it was just a bad secondary air pump that died. I ordered a used one on Ebay for like $95 replaced it and and car has been solid for the last 2 years. There will be little things to deal with due to age but that all comes with the package.
 

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I got my car a couple years ago and frankly I really like the way it drives. Last year I had to replace all the O2 sensors but my local shop was able to do that without it costing a fortune. Before that they replaced the serpentine belt ( I think there was 2 or them).

Anyway, earlier this year the SES light came on and it was diagnosed as the secondary air injection problem, which after a lot of research looks to me like an annoyance more than a problem. My local shop suggested upgrading to an after market chip which will clear the code. I REALLY hate seeing that light as I drive which has caused me to pretty much drive my truck instead.

I'm scheduled to take it in in a couple days for the annual inspection and I've asked my local shop to look up that chip again to fix the SES light so i can decide whether to do it. I think they mentioned that there was a slight trade off in doing that. The car may be a little more sportier in terms of driving. I kind of like leaving cars stock as much as possible.

My car is a silver 2000 with the black interior. I bought it with 148,000 miles on it, I think I have about 169,000 on it now.

On other observance is that in the summer whilst trying to negotiate the 38 mile long parking lot called I-95, I can't really run the AC. Or maybe I can, it just seems that if parked in stop and go traffic I can watch the oil temperature go up slightly, and then the water temperature go up slightly...which causes me to freak out and turn off the AC. I have a real aversion to temperature gauges that go past 12 o'clock on the dial. Anyone else have that occurrence? Is it normal or should I get it checked out. If I am at speed all the temps are normal.

So anyway there you have it. Am I better trying to sell it with the SES light on and explaining the issue or biting the bullet and adding the after market chip?

I've had a could of other BMW's and they all seem to have problems with error lights of one fashion or another coming on which is one reason I am thinking about selling this one. My concern is fixing the SES light and having another pop up in a couple months. The only problem is what in the heck would I replace this M5 with...I do really like the car.


Oh dear... I seem to have posted this in the wrong section
Spend some time here, there is a ton of info.

Unlock your onboard computer. You can see water temp and oil temp in real time (in C, not F). Ignore the gauges, especially the water temp gauge, that is an approximation. Water temp should generally stay under 90-93, but you can get over 100 with a pressurized system, so until it gets in the high 90's (mine never has), you are OK,PROVIDED YOU KNOW THE SYSTEM IS WORKING PROPERLY.

If the SES light is an issue, then get to the bottom of the problem. If is it the carbon buildup, best advice is to get an aftermarket "chip" tune. My personal preference is Evolve alpha n, which among other things will delete the carbon build up notice to the computer, as well as provide for a smoother and a little more powerful running car. Carbon build up is an emissions issue, and not one that really affects actual emissions or car performance. Alpha n also deletes the secondary air pump (as it was removed when I did the ESS install).

So, keep the car if you like the way it drives, just fix whatever the minor issues are. If you prefer to drive something else, and you have an SES, be prepared to take a financial hit, because the buyer will want some $$$ cushion to resolve the matter.

Regards,
Jerry
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I really appreciate everyone's input. I typically don't mind planning on paying for annual preventative maintenance. I have a 1998 Toyota Tacoma TRD 4x4 with a factory supercharger. It's paid for, it has 226,000 miles on it and it still look good and runs and drives great. Usually I might have to put $1,000 to $1,500 bucks year in replacing things that wear out. I don't mind doing that because I can plan for it.

I had a 1998 BMW 328 that was probably a worn out car when I got it and I shouldn't have bought it. A different local shop I used wanted $400 each for the O2 sensors ( times 4 of them) plus labor. They were very reluctant to use BMW 3rd party parts. The fan clutch went on that and took out the air-conditioning system ( I believe that's how the events unfolded) and it cost me $2,400 to fix that. Hell the car wasn't worth much more than that.
I still don't really understand how that could cause that much damage.

My new shop seems much more comfortable working on BMW's and is inclined to use after market products which is much more appealing to me. They'll buy the correct 10w 60 oil for me when I need oil changes and I have a $200 oil service as opposed to the dealers $500 oil smoil service.

I really wanted a gut check on doing the chip thing. It seems like everyone that is in the market for these cars is up to speed on that issue and due to the milage on my car it's probably better that I go ahead and fix the SES light with the chip upgrade. That way i don't have to worry about something else acting up and me not knowing about it because the light was stuck on. I'll let you know which chip he is recommending when he gets back to me.

That's good advice about having them change the coolant and having them check out the fan clutch. That just didn't seem right the way mine was acting. Maybe I can get that fixed.

Seriously, I was really looking at selling this and buying a Camry or something but man...at the end of the day I just couldn't seem to come to grasp with that idea. This car really is like a glove, it just wraps itself around you and is comfortable and fun to drive.

I've already replaced the o2 sensors on this one and do the preventative maintenance things as the shop suggests them so the car is fairly well sorted out.

f the SES light is an issue, then get to the bottom of the problem. If is it the carbon buildup,
The shop said it was carbon build up.

Thanks
 

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I really appreciate everyone's input. I typically don't mind planning on paying for annual preventative maintenance. I have a 1998 Toyota Tacoma TRD 4x4 with a factory supercharger. It's paid for, it has 226,000 miles on it and it still look good and runs and drives great. Usually I might have to put $1,000 to $1,500 bucks year in replacing things that wear out. I don't mind doing that because I can plan for it.

I had a 1998 BMW 328 that was probably a worn out car when I got it and I shouldn't have bought it. A different local shop I used wanted $400 each for the O2 sensors ( times 4 of them) plus labor. They were very reluctant to use BMW 3rd party parts. The fan clutch went on that and took out the air-conditioning system ( I believe that's how the events unfolded) and it cost me $2,400 to fix that. Hell the car wasn't worth much more than that.
I still don't really understand how that could cause that much damage.

My new shop seems much more comfortable working on BMW's and is inclined to use after market products which is much more appealing to me. They'll buy the correct 10w 60 oil for me when I need oil changes and I have a $200 oil service as opposed to the dealers $500 oil smoil service.

I really wanted a gut check on doing the chip thing. It seems like everyone that is in the market for these cars is up to speed on that issue and due to the milage on my car it's probably better that I go ahead and fix the SES light with the chip upgrade. That way i don't have to worry about something else acting up and me not knowing about it because the light was stuck on. I'll let you know which chip he is recommending when he gets back to me.

That's good advice about having them change the coolant and having them check out the fan clutch. That just didn't seem right the way mine was acting. Maybe I can get that fixed.

Seriously, I was really looking at selling this and buying a Camry or something but man...at the end of the day I just couldn't seem to come to grasp with that idea. This car really is like a glove, it just wraps itself around you and is comfortable and fun to drive.

I've already replaced the o2 sensors on this one and do the preventative maintenance things as the shop suggests them so the car is fairly well sorted out.


The shop said it was carbon build up.

Thanks
1. If you want to get from point A to point B, the Camry is a wonderful appliance. If you want to drive there, then keep the M5 or similar.

2. O2 sensors are really DIY, assuming you have opposable thumbs and they work. $400 each is ludicrous. A ramp is helpful (lift even better). Check here, the Bosch part numbers are available for front and rears (different part numbers), each is around $100, maybe less. Spend $5-$10 for an O2 socket (basically a socket that one that has a slot cut into it) and it should take about 30 minutes unless one is stuck and won't come out (happens if last change occurred while dinosaurs walked the earth). I put a dab (very small) of anti- seize on the threads. IF YOU GET IT ON THE PROBE, YOU NEED TO REPLACE. So be careful. A good indie would charge you around $500-$600 depending on the price of parts and how they mark them up (10%). I would just allocate a Saturday and DIY. Fronts are more critical than rears.

3. In the old days, the computer chips were literally changed. Today the car is generally reprogrammed using a computer and an interface cable with the OBD II port (above the drivers left knee in our cars). 50-100 miles for the computer to adapt.

4. If you want cheap and reliable, stay with Toyota (TRD supercharged truck). BMW will never be as cheap, or quite as reliable.

5. Check with board members in your area. I am sure you can get multiple recommendations for good indies who know our cars and will treat you fairly. Remember, they have to make a living too, and like most of us, they want repeat business, so they do have to make some reasonable profit on jobs. That is OK.

Regards.
Jerry
 

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2. O2 sensors are really DIY, assuming you have opposable thumbs and they work. $400 each is ludicrous. A ramp is helpful (lift even better). Check here, the Bosch part numbers are available for front and rears (different part numbers), each is around $100, maybe less. Spend $5-$10 for an O2 socket (basically a socket that one that has a slot cut into it) and it should take about 30 minutes unless one is stuck and won't come out (happens if last change occurred while dinosaurs walked the earth). I put a dab (very small) of anti- seize on the threads. IF YOU GET IT ON THE PROBE, YOU NEED TO REPLACE. So be careful. A good indie would charge you around $500-$600 depending on the price of parts and how they mark them up (10%). I would just allocate a Saturday and DIY. Fronts are more critical than rears.
I bought 2 pre cat sensors for $100 or $50 each and did those myself and 30 min of my time using hand tools. Not very hard to do. Just another example, if you do your research for the best pricing on online vendors, you may be able save some money in long term and keep the bmw ownership cost to reasonable level for a high performance sedan.
 
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