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Thread: BMW Oil Changes?

  1. #1
    240Robert ST Gui's Avatar
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    BMW Oil Changes?

    Ok my buddy found out how expensive BMW maintenance is (at least at San Jose BMW) for his R1200GS Adventure:

    valve cover gaskets - $149 x 2
    oil change - $300
    drain plug crush Washer - $9
    Replace crush washer very oil change and washer and drain plug every other oil change. WTW??

    He had a 6000 or 12,000mi service that was a little steep. I don't remember which.

    I will say this— SJBMW does a nice job of itemizing the parts and labor. It's just like a hospital stay. Ouch.

    My question— anybody with a similar model change their own oil? He's always changed the oil on all his bikes and still does on his ST. Aside from removing the skid plate, are there any hints or kinks he should be aware of?
    Don't tell me what I know. Tell me what I don't know.

    Ride safe, ride often.

  2. #2
    AdminiSTrator Mellow's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    Of course people do, have a friend that had almost 200k on his gs ADV and did all his own reg maint.

  3. #3
    SMSW's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    I ride with a local BMW club. Not only do some of the guys do their own oil changes, but all of the maintenance! One of the ride leaders recently pulled his forks for a front end overhaul.

  4. #4
    Unterbrecher von Sachen BakerBoy's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    Yes, it is quite practical to do all one's own maintenance on a BMW--the parts and tools are available online, and the factory service manual is available via DVD.

    I purchased a HEXCODE GS-911 and the service manual and so can/will do all factory services myself. I can also reset or change any settings that a BMW shop can do.

    The only thing I need a BMW shop for is any warranty issues that I may choose not to do myself, or to upgrade the bike's firmware.
    John - 2016 BMW R1200RT

    "Sometimes you find yourself in the middle of nowhere,
    and sometimes in the middle of nowhere, you find yourself." ~Unknown

  5. #5
    Site Supporter Gerhard's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    To be fair if they charged for valve cover gaskets it was more than an oil change, they at least also checked the valve clearance.
    On my RT the oil change is easier than it was on my ST, the oil filter is recessed in the oil pan under the bike and accessed without removing any plastic, on a GS you would have to remove a skid plate. From people that do their own valve checks they say it is easier than most bikes because the cylinder heads are so accessible.
    Mine needed new shims for the first time at it's last service which happened around 95,000 km (60,000 miles) so it isn't like they go out of spec very often. Mine needed front brake pads, had the brake fluid changed, needed two new tires, new spark pugs, final drive oil changed, and there might have been a couple of other things done in about 5 hours. They give you bike to ride while they do the service and review what was done and if there are any issues that need to kept an eye on, i.e. he said that the rotors are getting close to minimum thickness.

    Gerhard
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  6. #6
    Upt' North's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    How Much. At least Dick Turpin wore a mask! (For over the pond readers he was a bit like Billy the Kid)
    $9.00 for a washer, gold perhaps.
    I suppose they charge what people are willing to pay and over here you can buy service packages up front.
    Re the oil, because my BMW SUV is under warranty I use their oil just in case something goes bang, first time I bought a litre about £6.00, not bad I thought, about 12 months later the same bottle was £20.00, now that's inflation for you. Bring on Brexit.
    The ironic part is that I bought a litre of Motul to keep the ST topped up and three years later it lies covered in dust unopened on the shelf in the garage.
    Upt'North.

  7. #7
    Will Ride for Food scootac's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    Bobs BMW shows valve cover gasket kit for $106, savings of almost $90 right there.
    Sounds like San Jose is pretty proud of themselves....and if people will pay there fee....that's what they will charge.


    "Too often. . .I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen.?



  8. #8
    Site Supporter acedantinne's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    Beemer Bone Yard. Tell your friend.
    The beemer=my R1200RT is easier to change oil than my ST1300. Filters & oil purchased from the Bone Yard.
    I have to agree with Gerhard, Valve gaskets? more than a oil change for sure. Again, valve gaskets come with a kit from Bone Yard to do the complete service.
    Let Your friend know they sell Liquid Moly Oil. it is what I use in the RT 1200. #1 oil in Europe.
    Valve check is simple, as in both cylinder are hanging out there, 3 bolts an your into checking clearance already.

  9. #9

    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    After owning more than a dozen BMW's over the years, I always did my own service work and rebuilds (400 K on an old R75/7). I owned and enjoyed the Airheads, however, I started loosing interest in the then new Oilhead versions.
    My R80GS Basic had over 300 thousand miles on it with no major issues, as did my R75/7 and a R65LS. My R1150GS was nowhere near as reliable or enjoyable as the older bikes. I enjoyed my F650 Funduro when they still had carbs on them, however, when BMW started copying the Rotax Motor / Aprilla framed F650's with their own version, Fuel injection sucked (pun intended) and the dealerships started being all about $$$$ and no longer about riding.
    I believe I read a consumer news report that said BMW is the #1 bike for problems with service issues now. Does not surprise me.
    They build these things now so only their tools work, they don't sell parts, and its become a Hipster/fad lifestyle bike now. The R Nine T for example, first the stripped version, then a new tank, new model, then a fairing, new model, GS copy new model, they are simply parts bin bikes now.
    The only thing I like about BMW's anymore are their grips
    They have had problems/issues with their brake lines and ABS systems since the K model bikes, and don't get me started on the Bleeding procedure that needs to be hooked up to their computer etc.
    Think I'll keep my outdated Honda for now.
    Seems BMW is going to go the way Ducati did with their service manuals. Ducati wants $500 + for a service manual for any of their new bikes, plus whatever mark up the dealer adds to that price.

  10. #10
    SMSW's Avatar
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    Re: BMW Oil Changes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Igofar View Post
    I believe I read a consumer news report that said BMW is the #1 bike for problems with service issues now. Does not surprise me.
    Pretty sure that was a Consumer Reports survey.

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