How important is annual brake fluid change? - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 8:44 am Thread Starter
 
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How important is annual brake fluid change?

Greetings! As previously mentioned, I am negotiating the purchase of an '04 K12LT with 1600 miles. The seller took the machine to Dealer in Hickory, NC for its second service since ownership (the first was 600 mile). I spoke with service department today to review what was done. Engine oil was changed. Fellow I spoke with said engine and trans oil are one in the same. True? Final drive was changed with synthetic. New Battery installed. The bugaboo for me was being told that brake fluid was not changed because of low mileage and that there were no visible signs of moisture in fluid. I pointed out that manual says change brake fluid annually. Fellow blew of that comment. Is there something screwwy here? Dealer also says tires are cupped from low tire pressure. Should I request new tires? Thanks All!
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post #2 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 8:55 am
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Exclamation Brake fluid....

If it were my bike I would insist on replacement of the brake fluid. Brake fluid is hydroscopic, i.e., it will collect moisture from the operating environment. Unless I'm missing something your area is hardly considered dry.

Water in the brake lines corrodes and pits the various brake cylinders, which ultimately will result in fairlure. If the bike is an '04 it seems to me that brake fluid change is overdue.

The guy you spoke to re: engine oil and trasmission being the same is dead wrong. The tranny has a separate oil system and uses a gear weight oil. It should be replaced annually.

As to the tires Bridgestone BT020 tires, they typically cup over time but more so if the pressures are consistent with the recommendations in the owner's manual. Most k1200lt drivers use 42 front, 48 rear particularly on the BT020s to improve tire mileage and handling.

Tom

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post #3 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 10:18 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stashvillepete
<snip>I pointed out that manual says change brake fluid annually. Fellow blew of that comment. Is there something screwwy here? <snip>Thanks All!
The oil comment is definitely a sign something is amiss. The brake fluid recommendation is time based, not mileage based for a reason. I would insist on the brake fluid change except for my hesitancy to have that guy work on your bike. Any other options for service in your area?

Dan
2005 K1200LT - Ocean Blue

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post #4 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 10:45 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stashvillepete
Greetings! As previously mentioned, I am negotiating the purchase of an '04 K12LT with 1600 miles. The seller took the machine to Dealer in Hickory, NC for its second service since ownership (the first was 600 mile). I spoke with service department today to review what was done. Engine oil was changed. Fellow I spoke with said engine and trans oil are one in the same. True? Final drive was changed with synthetic. New Battery installed. The bugaboo for me was being told that brake fluid was not changed because of low mileage and that there were no visible signs of moisture in fluid. I pointed out that manual says change brake fluid annually. Fellow blew of that comment. Is there something screwwy here? Dealer also says tires are cupped from low tire pressure. Should I request new tires? Thanks All!
What the heck dealer did you talk to Extreme Motorcycles on 321

Those are just plane stupid comments and I'm thinking about having some warranty work done there? I can't remember the service managers name I spoke with there, but he assured me his people were excellant techs.

If this truely came from Extreme, PM me because I am going to print this and head right over there.

As far as your bike. You should probably buy it then bring it over to my place and we could go through it. If they worked on it sounds like all the fluids need rechecked and fasteners and drain plugs checked for secureness.

Brake fluid - BMW says every year, and that is what a certified rep should say and do. Me. I'm doing mine every 2 years, unless I get really good at it.

John

2004 - LT - Anthracite
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post #5 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 11:44 am
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I think the brake fluid should be changed at least every two years also, but no longer. Your bike has at least 2 years on the brake fluid, Maybe 3....

Brian Ley
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post #6 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 12:13 pm
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Change the brake fluid.

I agree with previous responders who question the knowledge of whomever you spoke to. Engine and tranny oil the same? This guy can't be a BMW trained mechanic. That's true for lots of Japanese bikes but I don't know of a single BMW that way. F-series maybe?

Anyway, forget him!

The ABS brake system is pretty complex, and I'd go with annual brake fluid changes as recommended by BMW. This is not where I'd find a short cut (and I like short cuts).
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post #7 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 12:27 pm
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Smile

I too bought my bike from them, they have good prices, just have to negotiate a lot, walk away a few times, I have heard they are getting rid of the beemer part of the dealership, get the extended warrantee, then take it to bmw of charlotte, for maintenance, or learn to do it yourself. There are a lot of guys near you who will be more than happy to teach you and help you out with things that need to be done. If you have time look up the tech session we are having on dec 8 at cccpasterjack's place and come by and we will be happy to show you the ropes.
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post #8 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 12:40 pm
 
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I just had my annual brake maintenance done and the service manager told me that now, BMW is saying that the wheel circuits only have to be done every 4 years vs. every 2 years. I went ahead and had mine flushed anyways...

Like everyone said, I would definitley find a more knowledgeable dealership - those comments scare me...

I quit going to my nearest dealer because they couldn't even put the tupperware on right - I sure didn't want to pay them for screwing that up and then worry about what else they messed up as I whizzed down the roadway.

Please don't by shy/hesitant about going somewhere else or hurting their feelings - it's your bike, your $$$, and your skin...
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post #9 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 12:47 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stashvillepete
Greetings! As previously mentioned, I am negotiating the purchase of an '04 K12LT with 1600 miles. The seller took the machine to Dealer in Hickory, NC for its second service since ownership (the first was 600 mile). I spoke with service department today to review what was done. Engine oil was changed. Fellow I spoke with said engine and trans oil are one in the same. True? Final drive was changed with synthetic. New Battery installed. The bugaboo for me was being told that brake fluid was not changed because of low mileage and that there were no visible signs of moisture in fluid. I pointed out that manual says change brake fluid annually. Fellow blew of that comment. Is there something screwwy here? Dealer also says tires are cupped from low tire pressure. Should I request new tires? Thanks All!
I can't believe a BMW dealer would say the engine oil is the same as the tranny!Everybody's posts are correct EXCEPT the dealer. If he said exactly what you mentioned, he is clueless. Get everything you can BEFORE the sale happens, especially this time of year when you have most leverage. If he agrees to give you the moon, GET IT IN WRITING! Just my 2 cents worth.

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post #10 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 1:50 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlieVT
That's true for lots of Japanese bikes but I don't know of a single BMW that way. F-series maybe?

Anyway, forget him!
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post #11 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 2:20 pm
 
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Hickory ain't got a BMW dealer...Closest one is Greensboro, Carolina BMW..

Motor oil in motor,,Gear oil in tranny and rear diff............Pete
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post #12 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 3:14 pm
 
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Change the brake fluid now, then every 2 years (at least). Tires? Get new ones thrown in the deal...definitely!
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post #13 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 5:05 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petepeterson
Hickory ain't got a BMW dealer...Closest one is Greensboro, Carolina BMW..

Motor oil in motor,,Gear oil in tranny and rear diff............Pete


Actually, Pete, Extreme IS a franchised BMW dealer. He bought the thing from whomever was previously in the area. I think it was either in Hickory or Boone.

Extreme also has a VERY experienced, and I hear capable, mechanic. Trained and experienced for almost decades. Certifications and all!

Unfortunately for BMW riders, that is all for HARLEYS!!! Same goes for the dealership!

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post #14 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 8:20 pm Thread Starter
 
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Yes work is being done by Extreme...

Well, thank you all for the Input. More background...the 2004 bike was purchased at Extreme 10/2003 and it is now three years and 1600 miles old. I am purchasing from a private party, very nice folks. Since the bike had not been serviced since the 600 and the seller had trouble with intermittent starter operation when showing it to me (probably battery, since replaced) and to protect the Pinnacle extended warranty, seller agreed to update the service on the bike. It was the individual with the title of service manager who I have spoken with. Subsequently, seller has agreed to clutch and brake fluid changes and tranny fluid when the dealer figures out if it is separate from engine but says "ixna" on the tires. I'm thinking how cupped can they be at 1600 miles?

The oil comment is definitely a sign something is amiss. The brake fluid recommendation is time based, not mileage based for a reason. I would insist on the brake fluid change except for my hesitancy to have that guy work on your bike. Any other options for service in your area?

When the deal is done I will likely be getting the bike serviced at home and at Touring Sport in Greenville, NC.

What is it with dealerships? How do they stay in business when no one trusts them?
Thanks again!
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post #15 of 20 Old Nov 14th, 2006, 10:14 pm
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I would add my two cents . When i was at Extreme last week inquiring about service I was given to understand they were between certified and were trying to get one from their Salisbury store.They seem to have trouble getting and keeping a good BMW service tech,howerer they are still a good parts source. As to the comment about the Big Dog choppers and H/D stuff they shipped it off to another store and to the best of my knowledge now deal only Suzuki and BMW with luck mabe they will get better.. I would also sugest the tech session in Cornelius nc in DEC>
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post #16 of 20 Old Nov 15th, 2006, 2:08 pm
 
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Doesn't it need special equipment?

Hi

I have a 2002 in the UK, acquired 4 months ago and was thinking about having the brake fluid changed.

A couple of specialist BMW private garages have opened in the last few years - run by ex BMW mechanics. They say they cannot change the Brake fluid as BMW will not give (sell) them the specialist equipment needed - they will maintain everything else.

My 2002 has PowerBrakes and ABS.

Any comments.

jeremy
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post #17 of 20 Old Nov 15th, 2006, 3:02 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremy_gibson
Hi

I have a 2002 in the UK, acquired 4 months ago and was thinking about having the brake fluid changed.

A couple of specialist BMW private garages have opened in the last few years - run by ex BMW mechanics. They say they cannot change the Brake fluid as BMW will not give (sell) them the specialist equipment needed - they will maintain everything else.

My 2002 has PowerBrakes and ABS.

Any comments.

jeremy
If it has not been done in the last 2 years, change it. England is pretty humid.

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post #18 of 20 Old Nov 16th, 2006, 2:25 pm
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Wink re:My 2002 has PowerBrakes and ABS

Hi , I have change the brake fluid on my 2002 K1200LT a couple of times . I don't think I did it the official way , but it works for me .

I put some speed bleeders on the ABS unit , the two long bleeders that go straight back . That way I can change the brake fluid from the master cylinders to the ABS . Hint :It goes easier on this part if you take out the battery , that way you can get a wrench on them .
After I get that part done , then I put the battery back in . Then I do the wheel cylinders . I have speed bleeders on the motorcycle wheels also . So I just turn the key on and very lightly give it some brake . You need to keep an eye on the ABS reservoir , as it WILL get pumped out very fast if you give it too much brake ( I learned the hard way ) .

The tricky part for me was getting fresh fluid out to the sidecar wheel . I tide a string the rear brake pedal , then ran it over to the sidecar wheel . Then I could pull the string to put the brakes on with one hand , and work the bleeder out there with the other two hands(;-)
Hope this is of help ...patric ...

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post #19 of 20 Old Nov 17th, 2006, 8:01 am
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I looked at the dealers around here (NC) before buying my LT. Looking at the site for Extreme scared me. Too much choppery stuff. And having seen their other place in Salisbury and hearing this, I am still feeling like they don't care too much about the BMWs. As for mine, it has 6289 miles on an 03. I changed the oil myself (kinda cathartic) and let the dealership do the clutch/brake fluids and rest of 6K service. If you change them, you will have the peace of mind that it is done.

Welcome to the LT gang. Lot of Carolinians buying LTs lately.

See ya on the road sometime, somewhere, hopefully.

rando
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post #20 of 20 Old Nov 17th, 2006, 8:05 am
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinJoe
England is pretty humid.
For humid, please read it rains all the time

The garage I use is fantastic, great service, loan bike when required and good mechanics.
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