Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Pugugly {P}
Thinking about my recent thread on BiL's 330d (my old car). When I had the car all servicing was done by the book and the tab picked up by the lease company. Now it's in private hands BiL has carried on the credo of FDSH down to the recent coolant and brake fluid (he's a flyer so a bit....well you know). Now is this a rip off or sensible line to follow. I have never changed brake fluid on a vehicle I've actually owned, but been "sensible" with coolant (you know checking it, making sure any top up is to proper spec). When my bike visited a Motorrad dealer they changed the brake fluid on a two year old low mileage bike..........the bike has ABS and I viewed that as a sensible thing to do;;;

Opinions ?
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Pugugly {P}
Contradicted myself there should say never on a non-BMW vehicle.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Clanger
I'm all for changing coolant on a 2 year cycle. Once you see the rubbish that drains out with the coolant I think you'd be convinced it's a good idea. Anti-corrosion properties fade with time as well.

Brake fluid; same thing although I prefer an unscientific annual brake bleeding regime where (using the faithful Gunson Ezibleed) I pull out a metric jam-jar full of fluid at each rear wheel and a half-jar (told you it was unscientific) at each front wheel. Don't like the risk of running ABS systems dry and the annual visit to the bleed nipples seems to keep them unsiezed.

Rip-off? Depends how much you get charged.
Hawkeye
-----------------------------
Stranger in a strange land
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - tr7v8
Not changing brake fluid is a big mistake. I've bought enough motors where the brake fluid is like brown windsor soup & I've changed it together with various brake components. I've also had more than one car where the brake fluid has boiled & exciting doesn't adequately cover it. With an ABS pump costing in EXCESS of £1,000 alone a £55 brake fluid change seems a good deal!
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Bagpuss
The handbook for my car states that the coolant should be changed every 3 years and the brake fluid every 2 years irrelevant of the distance driven. I don't know what this costs in the UK, here in Germany the recent brake fluid change cost around 100 euros and the coolant change last year was similar, both at the local BMW main agent in Munich. It doesn't seem much to pay for piece of mind, especially compared to the other running costs (insurance, petrol, tyres, etc.). Also saves me getting my hands dirty;-)
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - local yokel
Given that the brake fluid is protecting you, and the coolant is protecting your engine, the most expensive single "component", I'd suggest both are worth doing by the book.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Pugugly {P}
£76.00 in a BMW garage with a good reputation last week.

I see the point now, it's after hanging around this place for so long I have become suspicious of everything and anything.....:-(
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - artful dodger {P}
IIRC brake fluid is hydroscopic - absorbs water over time. This will eventually affect the performance of the fluid. I always have my brake fluid changed every other year. Recently when I had new disks and pads fitted, I also requested a change in brake fluid. All they charged for was the fluid, so I got an extremely good deal.

Coolant is so easy and cheap to change, and does an important job, why even question if it is necessary. If necessay Bil could do this yourself and save the labour cost.


--
Roger
I read frequently, but only post when I have something useful to say.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Pugugly {P}
Paranoia Roger.

Started using UKGser's "backroom" things are far calmer there, but the company isn't quite in the same league !
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Bill Payer
Don't know if they still exist, but it was the fad a while ago (20+yrs?) to test the boiling point of a sample of brake fluid to see if it needing changing.
I seem to recall a bit of controversy about it, because brake fluid manufacturers said the fluid needing changing at boiling points that car manufacturers had never reached, even in arduous road testing.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - David Horn
Three years (at least) since my brake fluid was changed and it still looks like new. Had the brakes hot enough a few weeks ago to smell them burning so doubt that the fluid is boiling. Modern systems are so well sealed it's unlikely that anything can penetrate them anyway. I don't even have to remove the cap to check the level.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Clanger
IIRC brake fluid is hydroscopic - absorbs water over time.

[pedant]
That's hygroscopic
[/pedant]

;-)
Hawkeye
-----------------------------
Stranger in a strange land
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - quizman
A year ago when my Passat was 4.5 years old, and on the original brake fluid, I drove down to the Pyrenees. I went up and down several cols and used the brakes alot. They worked perfectly with no fading.
Since then I have had new brakes and pads all round, and new brake fluid. My point is that I think changing brake fluid every 2 years is a bit OTT.
The handbook in the Passat says that the coolant should last 10 years! It seems a long time to me.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Roly93
I agree with changing brake fluid and coolant in principle, but i think 2 years is a bit excessive. My Audi dealer banged on about doing mine (for £73 plus VAT) and I said no I'l do it myself next year.
One think I find astonishing, is that they wanted to change my brake fluid, but DIDNT change my air filter on a major (40K) service. I think they have their priorities wrong here, as I changed the AF myself, the old one being fairly filthy.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Lud
DIDNT change my air filter on a
major (40K) service. I think they have their priorities wrong here,
as I changed the AF myself, the old one being fairly
filthy.


Good point Roly. Every single secondhand car I have acquired has had a clogged air filter. A lot of people never think of replacing one. The result of bad clogging is that the car runs richer and more sluggishly, increasing wear on all components, using more fuel and quite possibly with these modern cars damaging the catalyser too.

Perhaps main dealers hope you will go to them looking helpless and saying the car isn't running as well as it used to. Then they can suck their teeth and appropriate your wallet.
Dealer rip off or common sense ? - Aprilia
Changing brake fluid and coolant every two years is a very good idea.

The rip-off is in the pricing. I can change brake fluid in about 20 minutes using a MityVac. I can get a a litre of brake fluid for under £5 (dealers will pay less). So that's a charge of about £70 for 20 mins work for which the technician will receive about £5. Its very good business if you can get it.....
 

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