do you REALLY need the Inspection I and II if you can replace stuff yourself?

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I can check tubes and wires visually but I do not have any diagnostic equipment. I am due for the Inspection II soon and I don't mind having the oil changed. I can change spark plug wires and visually check
stuff.
Is there a compelling argument for paying $675 for an inspection II on a 1997 528i with 73,000 miles on it?
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Well, the Insp 1 & 2 does have a dump of the diagnostic system, but most everything else is a pretty simple DIY. You could have you dealer or independent mechanic do just the diagnostics. The 97 needs a reset tool for the service indicator although I think there's even a DIY workaround for that.
Don't forget fluids besides oil. Diff, trans, and P/S should get a drain and fill on roughly the Insp 1/2 interval. Coolant should be drained and refilled every 4 (current BMW practice) or 2 years (pre-free-maintenance sched). Air and microfilters should probably be replaced.
R / John
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John Carrier wrote:

I think you would only need to read codes if the Check Engine light is lit. Otherwise, there is nothing to "dump". Also, not sure if you still can in a '97, but you may be able to do the 5-stomp to extract codes. Any '97 E39 owners know for sure?

Should be able to use the jumper wire method to reset the service indicator too. Again, any '97 E39 owners care to comment?
--
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No, there is no compelling reason in my book.
If you read up on the contents of Inspection II, you may find that there are fluids to replace, but the stuff that says "check" or "adjust", then you should be able to check or adjust as needed.
Having said that, if you had ever raised the hood, you would know that there are no plug wires on your car.

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You need to remove the engine cover to be aware of this.
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I'm just a Camry owner who's thinking/dreaming about a BMW, but what mysterious German ignition technology is this that doesn't require high voltage wires to the positive leads of the spark plugs? (or are we talking about a diesel model?)
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wrote:

There are wires hidden under a plastic cover, but the cars use individual coils mounts on the plugs.
R / John
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Most modern engines don't have a distributor, but use one coil for each cylinder, the coil being triggered by the engine ECU. And the coil is directly attached to the plug so no plug leads as such.
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Dave Plowman (News) wrote:

I think you'll find that, except for cars designed without regard for price, there isn't a coil for every cylinder, and you will find spark plug wires. Certainly, there are spark plug wires on the 2007 Camry, which is a newer (i.e. more modern) design than any presently shipping BMW. Camrys also outsell BMWs by a large margin, so I think the "most...engines" claim is also suspect.
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There are of course variations but I was trying to keep it simple. There aren't plug leads in the sense of replacing them as you'd do with a distributor ignition system.
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Nobody Important wrote:

There are no cars made for sale that are "designed without regard for price".

Wrong again. Newer != more modern.

Maybe so.
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dizzy wrote:

Vanquish. McLaren. Maybach.

If you don't think the 2007 Camry engine and tranny are modern designs, you are in a very small minority.
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Arguing with Dizzy is like teaching a pig to sing. It annoys the pig and wastes your time.
Having said that, newer is not necessarily more modern. In the case if the Camry it could be, but Dizzy is quick to pick the least significant detail and pick it apart. And, the cars you listed are not cars that are offered for sale to the general public. Dizzy was speaking of consumer products, there is no consumer product made that is made without regard to cost or price. Toyota is king of the price conscious auto makers; everything they do (make) gives serious consideration to price points. (Damn it! I just defended Dizzy.)
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Dishonestly-snipped context restored.
Nobody Important wrote:

None of which are "designed without regard for price". Not even close, in the cases of the Maybach and Vanquish.
Do they have even one pound of steel that could have been replaced with magnesium or titanium or carbon fiber for a weight savings that would be too expensive to be worth it?
Learn how to think.

I didn't say they weren't "modern", cretin. I merely pointed-out that being newer doesn't make them MORE modern than "any presently shipping BMW".
Learn how to read.
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wrote:

I agree that the claim of :most cars" is a bit strong, but the technology is sound and is spreading. I don't know about your Camry, but if what you say is true, I'm surprised. Your car should have a 3 coils with each one connected to two spark plugs, either by plug wire or by a direct connection (better). In any case, I'd be surprised to open your hood and find a distributor.
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Jeff Strickland wrote:

Yes, you're quite right, without actually pulling the engine shroud (when did manufacturers start thinking engines need to be hidden like this, anyway?) IIRC there's one coil for every 2 cylinders, with one coil-on-plug assembly and a high voltage wire going to the second, paired cylinder. I think "most" manufacturers are sharing the coils in this way. After all, a wire is much cheaper than a coil-on-plug assembly.
In some previous Camry designs, there was even a so-called waste spark system in which the spark plugs went off even in cylinders on an exhaust stroke, which saved money for the manufacturer, but made the plugs wear out twice as fast. (I guess this is the technique used even on modern engines that share the coils.)
But, actually, the BMW I really want is one of those 2-litre diesels which aren't sold in my country (Canada) because there's too much sulphur in the diesel fuel that comes from the tar sands here.
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That's true, but a separate coil is more efficient -- the cycle time is longer (the rest time is longer) -- when there are more coils.
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Well it means the coil must have twice the output of one used for a single cylinder, so the savings aren't so obvious. It also means fairly tortuous HT wiring on many engine designs if the wasted spark is on the exhaust stroke - which in some ways defeats the beauty of the single coil idea - no chances of cross firing.
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wrote:

Each spark plug gets its own coil mounted directly above the sparkplug. The coil is connected directly to the respective plug, and is fired by input (output, really) from the engine computer.
Toyota is starting to do this as well. They are using three coils, one to be shared by two plugs in a V6, but the idea is the same.
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wrote:

And that connection is a wire from the ECU, not high tension, but a wire none the less.
R / John
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