Many cars nowadays are coming with condition-based servicing (CBS) systems. These types of systems have been a boon for mechanics, making the process of identifying and diagnosing issues in your vehicle considerably easier and faster.

While CBS is a great tool for drivers and mechanics alike, it’s not a replacement for a human mechanic – especially if you drive a luxury German car like a BMW!

Some BMW owners assume that they can get away with taking their car into a generalist mechanic, and that CBS will compensate for the experience gap.

This is not the case!

If you want to give your BMW the best possible service, you can’t rely on CBS alone. If you ask us, you should only ever entrust a BMW specialist in Melbourne with your next BMW service.

BMW CBS, explained

BMW was one of the first manufacturers to shift condition-based service in their cars, with the first BMWs equipped with computerised monitoring systems popping up in 2002.

The idea behind conditioning-based service is simple: instead of a fixed BMW service schedule, CBS allows your mechanic to provide service depending on what work your vehicle needs.

Using a computerised monitoring system, your vehicle keeps tabs on:

  • The condition of wearing parts
  • Levels of operating fluids
  • Temperature and driving habits

BMWs with i-Drive even allow you to monitor the status of individual parts and systems, as well as its remaining serviceable life and next service deadline.

Using this information, you’re able to avoid unnecessary services, and only pay for what your car needs.

That’s the theory, at least.

In the real-world however, things aren’t quite that clear-cut and which need a professional’s opinion – one which our BMW mechanics in Melbourne are eager to provide!

What a mechanic can do that CBS can’t

Better, more accurate diagnoses

Here’s something you might not know: BMW’s CBS system only actively monitors a handful of systems in your BMW!

While your onboard computer may actively monitor oil levels and supply the information to your CBS system, for the vast majority of parts, components and systems, CBS recommends service based on either:

  • Mileage
  • Time since last service

Many of the BMWs that roll into our workshop display alerts from CBS stating that a particular service is needed because the car has passed an arbitrary distance or time.

But what if the part itself is completely fine?

As we mentioned above, many of the parts and systems that aren’t actively monitored. By following CBS blindly, you may pay for a replacement or service that your car doesn’t actually need.

Thanks to their brand-specific knowledge and long working history with BMW vehicles, a BMW specialist mechanic can often give you a more accurate picture of your vehicle’s health than CBS.

We’ll look at the parts and systems that CBS doesn’t actively monitor, telling you whether you actually need a service, or if you can afford to push it back.

A BMW specialist in Melbourne provides service that accounts for how you drive your car

The milestones and deadlines set out by CBS are based on estimates made by BMW’s engineers.

However, these estimates don’t always reflect real-world driving conditions!

Over the years, we’ve noticed that BMW’s engineers tend to be more conservative than most drivers. In particular, their calculations seem to be based on long, uninterrupted drives.

As we’ve talked about before, the distance you drive affects the health of your engine – specifically, shorter drives are worse for your engine, and can lead to issues such as:

  • Sludge build-up
  • Premature engine wear
  • Oil dilution

The problem is that most of us don’t drive that far very often. According to the ABS, the average commute is around 16km – considerably lower than the distances BMW bases its calculations on.

The result? The milestones and deadlines set by BMW can be overly optimistic, leading to essential service and maintenance tasks being delayed.

That’s just one way that CBS doesn’t give the full picture. The only way around it? To call a BMW specialist in Melbourne and asking for their opinion!

We diagnose and service older BMWs

As a luxury car, many enthusiasts hold on to their BMWs for much longer. Not to mention, many car buyers pick up BMWs on the second-hand market in order to enjoy the luxury and exclusivity of a beemer, but without the price tag.

The result? Many of the BMWs our BMW mechanics in Melbourne work on are of an older vintage.

The problem is that the further away from the date of purchase you get, the less accurate CBS becomes.

Say you drive an E65 7-Series sedan. With the last vehicle rolling out of the factory in 2008, even the newest E65’s are almost 12 years old. CBS systems in these models are unlikely to be very accurate.

One reason for this is because more time means more variables such as unexpected wear-and-tear, which can affect CBS’ usefulness.

To make matters worse, BMW engineers assume that the useful life of your car is around 5 years before you upgrade.

As a result, CBS skews towards newer vehicles, and tends to become less accurate as your car ages.

Why you need a BMW specialist mechanic

We get it, we really do. We aren’t all made of money, and taking your vehicle for service at a BMW dealership is expensive.

As a result, many BMW owners are turning to independent mechanics to bring down their BMW service cost.

The logic is that with CBS, generalist mechanics will be able to provide a similar service to the dealership.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case!

While CBS can give them pointers, it’s no substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a BMW specialist mechanic in Melbourne.

Knowing the issue is one thing; being able to fix it is another. A generalist mechanic simply may not have the expertise needed to act on the information provided by CBS. They might lack the tools, or simply not understand how BMW components and systems work.

To ensure your BMW gets the best possible BMW service in Melbourne, you need to take it to someone who knows what they’re doing.


Looking for a BMW mechanic in Melbourne?

Ammstar Autohaus is driven to provide you with better value

Our promise to you is simple:

  • Dealership-level BMW service…
  • … provided at a fraction of the price!

Ever since 2000, that’s exactly what we’ve been providing BMW owners all over Melbourne.

Since we operate independently of the dealership network, we’re able to be much more flexible with our service… and our pricing!

Our BMW mechanics are true experts, possessing a wealth of brand-specific knowledge. In fact, many of our team members come from the dealership network themselves, bringing all their knowledge with them.

Combined with genuine BMW parts, in-depth computer diagnostic tools and unsurpassable workmanship, and it’s clear why we’re such a popular alternative to dealership service.

It isn’t just BMWs that we service, either. Do you drive a Mercedes-Benz? Volkswagen? An Audi? You’re in luck – we service all those brands too!

Leave your BMW with an expert – call Ammstar Autohaus’ experts today:

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