Anyone have useful tips for breaking in (not breaking into) a new
I just purchased a 335i convertible, and the dealer said nothing to
worry about ... which I don't 100% trust. I'd like to keep the car for
a long time, so I figure it won't hurt to keep the baby gloves on for
So far, the only things I'm doing are trying to vary the RPMs, keep
below 4k RPM, and probably head in for an early oil change. The dealer
said no need to come in till the light goes off ... 15k miles?! ...
but that seems a bit long for a new car.
Any other advice?
You have the right attitude. What _I_ did at 2000 miles was change
all the driveline fluids. Engine oil (Amsoil 5W-30); manual transmission
fluid (Royal Purple Synchromax); differential fluid (Redline 75W-90).
Oh, an oil filter of course. The differential oil, in particular, looked
it needed changing. I have read that a differential produces a lot of wear
metals in its first 800-1000 miles. Seeing what drained out, I believe it.
What does the owners handbook say?
You don't really need to treat it with kid gloves, however it will do no
harm to do what you suggested if it's a personal car that you plan to keep
for a long time. One thing worth noting is that car manufactures are
pressurized by customers (particularly fleet/lease customers) to reduce
servicing costs. Of course, this means that servicing schedules are greatly
influenced by the manufacturers/distributors sales and marketing
departments, not necessarily technical engineers. Therefore, servicing
intervals increase and the amount done during the service is reduced, in
order to create sales.
One thing working in their favor is more advanced oils and materials used in
components now-a-days, although it is possible that they maybe a bit
short-sighted about what happens after the warranty period. That said, BMW
is at the forefront of technology therefore I would trust BMW more than
other manufacture, who will try to keep up with them.
Are manufactures/distributors service schedules now-a-days correct? Mmm,
decide for yourself.
Eh! Break in or running in went out with the ark didn't it?
Drive as a sensible person for the first few weeks and don't hold high revs nor
full throttle until around 1000 miles then take it gradually.
With the manufacturing tolerances used today and the highly skilled robots -
break in doesn't really need to be done.
Sir Hugh of Bognor
The difference between men and boys is the price of their toys.
the first 2000 miles. That worked quite well for me.
As for oil changes:
The reason that we had to change break in oil in the old days was that the
manufacturing processes left lots of debris in the engine. That situation
no longer obtains.
It is quite common for an engine from any manufacturer not to need oil
between oil changes. Mine did after almost 14000 miles. However, I now
change it every 7500 miles because oil is far cheaper than engine rebuilds.
U S makers usually recommend every 7500 miles, and they don't use synthetic
So, how do you explain the fact that the "M" cars (M3, M5, M6) have
a factory-mandated 1200 mile oil change? Those engines are manufactured
with tighter tolerances and more care than the "common" engines.
I think the answer lies in the question, tolerances are tighter etc., and I
dare say so are buyers' expectations.
If a new 528i blows up after a few weeks, they can always give you a new
one, but a custom built M5?
I suspect a good part of this is checking for anything loose.
Well, that's the downside of tighter tolerance designs.
If it were me, I'd definitely do the oil, differential, and manual
transmission fluid at a thousand miles. Maybe you won't get any gunk
out, maybe you'll get a lot, but the effort is minimal and the possible
return 200,000 miles later is great.
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
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