Ask BMWBLOG: What do you recommend for maintenance for an E36 Z3?

Interesting | March 9th, 2013 by 7
bmw-z3-black

Robert, one of our readers, and a proud owner of Z3 E36 model, sent in a question regarding the recommended maintenance for this rare and …

Robert, one of our readers, and a proud owner of Z3 E36 model, sent in a question regarding the recommended maintenance for this rare and unique model.

I have a Z3 series E36 with a M44 1.9 engine. Around to turn over 30,000 miles (I drive around 1,500 miles/year). What do you recommend for maintenance?  No mechanical or performance problems (the 4-cylinder Z is not much of a speedster). I’m inclined to do nothing but an oil change.

Will a tune-up really make a difference? Ignition coils are pricey.
Ask BMWBLOG: What do you recommend for maintenance for an E36 Z3?
Our own Chuck Vossler offered an extensive recommendation on how to properly maintain this fine automobile:
Assuming it’s been on BMW scheduled maintenance, I would think that you have only done two oil changes.  If it were my car I would change the oil and oil filter,  air filter, the cabin air filter, the fuel filter, spark plugs, and the differential and transmission fluid.
Lastly, I would make sure to change the coolant,  thermostat and  water pump.  Make sure to only use BMW factory coolant that is blue: all others have stuff that can hurt the alloys in your cooling system.  Bimmerworld and a Bavarian Autosport also sell some stuff would work but those are the only places I would get it.
It would depend if any shocks or bushings were leaking or worn, but If they are you could consider putting new shocks. I like Konis myself.  As far as bushings go I prefer PowerFlex.
Don’t forget about brake fluid!
The above recommendations are if you plan to keep it for the rest of your natural born life!
Good luck!
  • http://twitter.com/ChuckVossler Chuck Vossler

    I’d add to check your Rear Shock Mounts too. They are notorious for trunk rattles/noises. I assume you have a 1996-01?

  • 88E30M3

    Chuck, Z3 production ran model years 1996-2002. The last unit rolled off the line on June 28, 2002. Furthermore, the 1.9 had a model run of 1996-1998.

    • http://twitter.com/ChuckVossler Chuck Vossler

      Thanks for the info. My favorite of that series was the Z3M coupe. It was nuts!

  • Pingback: Ask BMWBLOG: What do you recommend for maintenance for an E36 Z3? | labmw.com

  • Lucky13

    For the cost to replace everything mentioned he could buy another used Z3.

    • http://www.bmwblog.com Horatiu B.

      The same one though with low miles?

    • http://twitter.com/ChuckVossler Chuck Vossler

      Any 20+ y/o car is going to require some TLC. DIY would save yourself a ton on all of this. No special tools until you get to the front springs & you can borrow those compressors from Advanced Autoparts for free. Just depends on how you want to maintain your BMW and how long you plan to keep it. If he’s kept it 20 yrs, I am bettin’ he’s in it for the long haul. The cheapest would be to do nothing until it breaks.

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