We offer complete service for your BMW, Mini Cooper, Mercedes Benz, and Porsche. From routine maintenance to computer diagnostics. We carry OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts in stock, are equipped with factory tools and service bulletins, and have the all important factory diagnostic scanner to perform all required repairs. You will not find another independent repair facility that is as well equipped as we are to handle all types of repairs.
We honor all extended warranties. Cars with factory warranty and maintenance plans still in effect are recommended to visit an authorized BMW, MINI, Mercedes Benz or Porsche dealder. Please consult your service booklet for precise terms of your car warranty and maintenance required.
We perform all repairs according to the guidelines and service bulletins supplied by BMW of North America and MINI of North America. All repairs come with a 24 month/24k mile warranty on parts and labor.
Performing repairs and maintenance services at our location will not void the original manufacturer's warranty on your vehicle.
We do all repair work including:
* Drive train
* Steering and suspension
* Manual/automatic transmissions
* Engine repair
* Cooling systems
* Heating and air conditioning
* Engine management systems
* Electrical systems
A lot has changed in the last 20 years when it comes to servicing your BMW. No, not the need to keep it regularly maintained but rather the cost and the frequency of the various maintenances.
From 2002 to 2006, and then on, BMW introduced Condition Based Services ( CBS ) to eliminate the big out of pocket expenses every 10,000 to 15,000 miles of the old Oil Service Maintenance, Inspection 1 & Inspection 2 Maintenances. Now it is much more of an “a la carte” system and is based on a combination of your driving style/habits along with the time and miles driven. These services show up in the information screens of your BMW and are easily accessible.
Let’s discuss a few of these ------
We recommend changing the engine oil & filter every year or every 5,000 to 6,000 miles. Not as frequent as Jiffy Lube and certainly not as long between as the BMW CBS counter in your car. WHY? To start with, BMW corporate had to pay for a lot of the services when your car was new so extending the oil change interval was an obvious way to reduce expenses for them. It was also part of a nice sales presentation - “ You only have to come in every couple of years or so for an oil change “. Then it dovetailed nicely with the claims of the oil companies that they had developed new synthetic super oils that could extend the miles between oil changes.
SOUNDS GOOD! WHAT’S WRONG WITH THAT?
Oil sludge build up & oil caking all over the moving & not so moving pieces of your engine, that’s what. Those extended intervals cause internal build up that looks like melted chocolate candy bar coating just about everywhere inside the engine. Here are a couple of pictures from the inside of a 2014 328i with only 60,000 miles on it.
This oil crust buildup reduces the life of the engine purely & simply and in some cases has led to catastrophic engine failures. The new engines are working harder than ever before and even harder in Honolulu with the hot climate & our everyday slow moving, short trip, stop & go traffic.Here, the engines need oil changes more frequently than what BMW would have you believe.
OK. Go with Jiffy Lube and those types of shops. They’re less expensive &faster plus you can find them easier. NOT SO FAST ! They are less expensive because they use cheaper & substandard parts. Good synthetic oil is not cheap and what good is a junk oil filter that not only doesn’t clean the oil properly but also starts falling apart between oil changes? True Story ! We’ve seen it on more than one occasion. On top of that, most fast lube folks are entry level and have not been trained to work especially on BMW’s & MINI’s.Our guys have been trained to work on these cars and have years of experience.Plus we are using top of the line synthetic oils & high qualityGerman/European filters.
So….. Engine oil & filter change every year or every 5,000 to 6,000 miles using top of the line oil & filters done by someone who really knows your car. You can check out the discount coupons elsewhere in this site for additional savings. WINNER !
Every 2 years
One of the most neglected & forgotten services. The brakes should have the old fluid drained & filled/flushed with new fluid every two years. WHY? Brake fluid absorbs moisture all the time, 24 / 7 / 365and it’s certainly humid here in Hawaii. WHAT’S GOING ON WITH THAT? Two things.Stopping power & lower cost when it comes to brake repairs. The older the brake fluid is the more likely it is to break down and thus robbing you of the power needed to stop at times especially in an emergency situation. Plus the moisture in the brake fluid attacks some really expensive parts in the brake system & ruins them. This is not pleasant news when the day comes that brake work is being done and the shop calls to tell you that your bill is going up due to corrosion & contamination in the system caused by old, dirty brake fluid. Get that brake fluid flushed & renewed every two years for safety & savings in the long run.
Every2 years ( Usually done in conjunction with the brake fluid flush service )
This filter or filter set, in some models, is working full-time, cleaning the air you breathe that is coming into the car through the air conditioning system. ( Unless your air conditioning is not working properly and you are driving around with open windows. That is another story. ) The micro filter is catching and blocking dust, pollen, allergens, soot, twigs & bird feathers, you name it! We see some pretty incredible things in these filters when we change them. A new filter has the ability to screen out particles down to 3 microns in size. That is the same as a N95 face mask. Think about that! Is your A/C a bit diminished or a bit stinky? A new filter could help! Plus it helps keep everyone in the car a little healthier.It should be replaced every two years for optimal performance and usually gets done at the same time the brake fluid is replaced. Here’s a comparison picture of two filters, one old, dirty one and a new one. Which would you rather breathe through?
The coolant for the car’s engine should be replaced every 3 to 4 years ( this is not what keeps the air conditioner cold -- it keeps the engine cool &protected )
Here’s why: Most vehicles use long-life engine coolant (usually a 50/50 mixture of antifreeze and water) in the radiator that for several years will provide protection against boiling in hot weather and freezing in cold temperatures, with little or no maintenance. Modern vehicles also have longer intervals between fluid changes of all types partly because environmental regulators have pressured automakers to reduce the amount of old coolant, as well as other waste fluids, that must be disposed of or recycled.
Coolant can deteriorate over time and should be tested to see if it’s still good, as it can be hard to tell just by appearances. Even if the coolant reservoir shows sufficient coolant level and testing shows the cooling and antifreeze protection are still adequate, a coolant drain and antifreeze flush may be needed.
The coolant can become more acidic over time and lose its rust-inhibiting properties, causing corrosion. Corrosion can damage the radiator, water pump, thermostat, radiator cap, hoses and other parts of the cooling system, as well as to the vehicle heater system all of which can cause a car engine to overheat.
Thus, the coolant in any vehicle with more than about 50,000 miles should be tested periodically. That’s to look for signs of rust, leaks and to make sure it has sufficient cooling and overheating protection, even if the cooling system seems to be working properly and the reservoir is full. The cooling system can be checked with test strips that measure acidity, and with a hydrometer that measures freezing and boiling protection.
If the corrosion inhibitors have deteriorated, the antifreeze coolant should be changed. The cooling system might also need flushing to remove contaminants no matter what the maintenance schedule calls for or how many miles are on the odometer. On the other hand, if testing shows the coolant is still doing its job protecting from overheating and not allowing corrosion, changing it more often than what the manufacturer recommends could be a waste of money.
Replace every 3 years
The air that enters your engine flows through the air filter. The filter catches sand and other debris protecting your engine and helping it last longer. The engine air filter should be replaced between 15,000and 30,000 miles, depending on driving conditions. If you have a turbocharged engine or often drive on unpaved roads, it needs to be changed more often. If you don't drive a lot, an air filter should be replaced at least every 3 years, as with age it becomes brittle. An old filter can tear, allowing dirt and sand to enter the engine.
An air filter is installed inside the air filter box. It's made of pleated paper-like material. The air flows from the bottom up, so dirt and larger objects are trapped in the box under the filter.
As the air filter gets dirty and gradually clogs up, it restricts the air flow into the engine. This adds strain to your engine, making it harder for it to "breathe." Due to increased vacuum, some dirt particles could be sucked through the filter and scratch the engine pistons and cylinder walls. For the same reason, the engine may start consuming more oil.
Symptoms of a dirty air filter include a lack of power on hard acceleration and at higher RPMs, although it's not always noticeable. The fuel economy may also be affected, although not by much. In extreme cases, the "Check Engine" warning light may illuminate on the dash.
Every 60,000 miles
Replacing spark plugs & ignition coils are the closest thing to a “tune-up”that can be done on modern cars.
On a few of the cars from 2002 ( 7 series ) and ending with the 2006 3 series there are reminder service icons calling for the replacement of the spark plugs at different set mileages. None of the BMW’s since then display this service request any longer & owners must rely on their own record keeping or the recommendation of a particularly conscientious service adviser. Nevertheless, the average BMW / MINI should have the spark plugs replaced at 60,000 miles while some sport engines require them at even earlier mileage.
Here’s a picture comparing a new spark plug to an old one. Believe me some of the old ones we take out of engines look worse than the old one depicted.
Why do spark plugs need to be replaced? Over time they wear out, become contaminated and eventually fail.
What are the signs that spark plugs are worn out? In some cars, you might notice that the engine doesn't start as easily as before. It may run a little rough or hesitate when accelerating, especially when it's cold. Old, worn-out or contaminated spark plugs can cause poor gas mileage. Often, though, there are no symptoms until one of the old spark plugs stops working, causing the engine to misfire. The term "misfire" means that the affected cylinder is not firing up. For example, if one cylinder misfires in a4-cylinder engine, it will run on only three cylinders. An engine that misfires runs rough, shakes and lacks power. The "Check Engine" warning light flashes on and off or stays on solid.
Often a worn-out spark plug can cause an ignition coil to fail. The ignition coil is the part that generates high-voltage impulses to create an electric spark. The ignition coil failure is the #1 reason most engines start running rough but not the only reason.
Should spark plugs be changed earlier as a precaution? It depends on the mileage. For example, if your car has long-life spark plugs that are due at 100,000 miles and your dealer recommends changing them at 50,000 miles, it's too early.
If your engine is good on gas and runs like new, consider waiting until closer to the recommended mileage.
Do all spark plugs need to be replaced at the same time? Yes, spark plugs are usually replaced as a set. It's important to use the correct parts, as wrong spark plugs may cause problems. It's also vital to carefully inspect new spark plugs before installation. If a new spark plug has been dropped on a hard floor, the insulator might be cracked. Cracks in the insulator are visible on close inspection.
Do all spark plugs need to be replaced if an ignition coil fails? If one of the ignition coils fails and spark plugs haven't been changed in awhile, it's a good idea to change all of the ignition coils and all of the spark plugs as a precaution. If spark plugs are fairly new, replacing one spark plug and the ignition coil in the affected cylinder might be enough.
Every 30,000 TO 60,000 miles
This last maintenance item is one of the hardest services to convince most customers to have done yet is potentially one of the most important to the longterm life & health of the engine along with restoring engine performance that may have been so slowly decreasing over time that the owner / driver may not even notice.
Almost every modern auto engine produced currently by any manufacturer today isa turbocharged gasoline direct injection engine. That is high tech speak for the systems required these days to build a high performance fuel efficient engine. BMW & MINI have been making this type of engines since 2007 and since 2012 is the only type being used in all of their cars. This high performance fuel efficient engine comes with an undisclosed price though and most customers don’t find out until after the warranty is over. What is this“price” ?
These engines build up a sometimes massive amount of carbonized oil &gasoline vapor deposits that fill the air intake tracts & cover the intake valves to the point of choking off the air that the engine needs to breath in order to run properly. This shows up first as a slightly rougher than normal idle and slight hesitation when accelerating. At first it wouldn’t even be strong enough to set off a “Service Engine Soon” check engine light. As the carbon progressively builds up the misfire becomes more pronounced and may even shift from cylinder to cylinder. Sometimes this does set off a “Service EngineSoon” warning and continues to be rough even if the spark plugs and coils are changed. Here’s a picture to illustrate what we are talking about. You don’t have to be a mechanic to see the difference between the clean system and the choked up system. The bad one looks like the bottom of your barbecue grill.
Obviously the picture to the right is the bad, carboned up, clogged system and the bottom picture is what a nice, healthy good system looks like. Cleaning this carbon out is no easy chore either and is way worse to dothan that barbecue grill. Fortunately, we have the proper tools and have done this numerous times. What happens if you don’t have this done? The engine performance degrades slowly but surely and if left unchecked then may even result in one of those dreaded catastrophic failures. Ask our Boss, Voytek! His personal 2010 530i station wagon, with just 60,000 miles on it, broke down two blocks from our shop and had to be pushed into the shop. Without any warning signs one of the valves broke off and in just a few seconds of running damaged the engine so badly that he had to find a complete replacement engine. Turns out the valves were carboned up so badly you could barely see them when we had the engine apart. What a hard lesson to learn!! Ask more than a few MINI Cooper owners about bad, carboned up valves and they will tell you similar stories. The repair costs are more than 5 times the price of the cleaning preventative maintenance.
Get that carbon cleaning ( AKA “the walnut shell blast” ) done every 30,000 to60,000 miles! Your car will love you!