Last post on Jul 23, 2013 at 5:49 PM
You are in the BMW 5-Series
What is this discussion about?
BMW 5 Series, Car Safety, Tires, Wheels, Sedan, Wagon
#120 of 136 Re: Simple Solution [techman9]
Apr 16, 2012 (8:16 am)
No adjustable suspension. As far as suspension/wheels/tires goes, this is a base 535xi. We put our money into things like the Comfort seats with ventilation and message that make a huge difference when your standard long distance driving day is 13 hours.
#121 of 136 Re: Simple Solution [techman9]
Apr 16, 2012 (8:40 am)
Turns out my pothole on I40 didn't just take out a wheel. It knocked the alignment out of whack as well! Front and rear several degrees out. Three hours work and $435 to put it right! So, the total cost is not approaching $1100.
My essential question is whether the suspension is really bottoming, or if the impact transmitted through the RFT tires is so loud and sharp that it just FEELS as if the suspension is bottoming.
I am certain that BMW tech people could answer my question. But they refuse to make any comment or voice any opinion. So I am left with trying to talk with anyone else I can find who has more experience with these cars than I do.
In this past week I have talked with several Bimmer owners who have told me that their cars (previous-gen 3 and 5 series) also had impacts so hard and sharp that they thought the suspension was bottoming -- hard. BUT, when they switched to non-RFTs it became clear that the RFTs had been the problem. With conventional A/S tires, their cars still hit harder than other cars they have driven, but the impact no longer shudders through the entire body.
This is leading me to think that I may try an expensive fix to try to save this car: spend the money to get the Conti Extreme Contact DWS's mounted on BBS wheels with flow rolled rims (which should make the rims virtually as hard as those on forged wheels without going all the way to the cost of fully forged wheels.)
Total cost, including a spare wheel and tire and a jack, would be nearly $4K -- and I cannot be certain that it will fix the problem. But, the only other choice would be to take the hit of replacing a less-than-one-year-old $64K car.
#122 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [laurasdada]
Aug 28, 2012 (4:20 pm)
Hi, I paid $1435 for my 2012 528i T&W Protection Tier 2. I feel like I overpaid it, and hesitate if I should cancel it within 60 days. If anyone could share the experience will be much appreciated. My 528i has regular 17" tire. I drive much less than 8K mile a year I believe as I normally take the company coach to/from work.
#123 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [mxyzhang]
Aug 31, 2012 (5:09 pm)
Your "protection" plan really isn't anything more than an insurance plan, and as in all insurance plans, it's based upon the idea that it will bring in more revenue to the provider (insurer) than the outgoing costs (replacement wheels and tires).
So, the first thing you need to think about is how often in the past, recent or distant past, that you've had damaged wheels and tires. That will give you a general feeling about the value of the plan.
The mileage you drive comes secondary, unless its in areas you don't normally drive in or aren't familiar with...
On the plus side, you have 17" wheels, which gives you more sidewall height, which translates into more cushion for the wheel when you do hit a pothole. As wheel diameter increases, so does wheel damage, on average. Your experience may differ.
So, IMO, if you have never had to replace a wheel, and your last flat was 15 years ago, you might do better banking the money and taking the risk. OTOH, if you spend considerable lengths of time at the local tire repair shop, you might want to keep the protection.
Good luck in whatever your choice ends up being!
#124 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [mxyzhang]
Sep 01, 2012 (1:50 pm)
It depends entirely on where you live and where you drive. If you drive almost exclusively on smooth, well-maintained roads, at 8K miles per year you will probably never have any problems.
My situation is different. I drive 20K miles per year on roads in the west that have heavy truck traffic. Lots of pot holes. The runflats are COMPLETELY unsuited for this sort of driving. A single pothole cost me over $1000 to replace a wheel and tire and get a full 4 wheel alignment.
I resolved our problem by replacing the OEM wheels and tires with five lighter, stronger, OZ wheels with Conti DWS all season tires. It cost $3000 and the full sized spare takes up a lot of trunk room. But it absolutely transformed the car. Ride, handling, noise, and comfort all significantly improved. Unsprung weight considerably less. Total weight (including a jack) up by only a few lbs. Potholes that previously caused a big "bang" that made the car shudder now pass virtually un-noticed.
Here is a simple test: if you encounter situations in which your car slams into potholes as if it had hit a steel bar, it is only a matter of time before you lose a tire/wheel or more. If you don't, you will probably be OK.
I will NEVER buy any car with runflats again. They might make sense for someone who drives on smooth, well-maintained roads and never wanders far from service (as in Germany). They are un-suited for people who drive away from civilization in the U.S. BMW's are MUCH better cars without run flats. BMW should have made run flats an option in this country.
#125 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [busiris]
Sep 01, 2012 (1:59 pm)
Past experience with non-runflat tires is NO predictor of how you will fare with run flats. Before run flats, I had been driving almost exclusively on 45 profile tires for almost 20 years and had never had a tire fail due to an impact.
Driving on the same roads at the same speed with BMW 45 profile runflats was a nightmare. I previously had had no idea how bad the roads I regularly drive on are.
When I switched the BMW to non-runflats and lighter, stronger wheels, it was like getting a new car. Impact noise is WAY down. Ride and handling are better. And, the pothole problem completely went away. It is like I am driving on different roads.
#126 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [mxyzhang]
Sep 01, 2012 (2:19 pm)
After thinking about this for a little longer, here is what I would do if I were you:
Cancel your insurance.
Use the money you save to buy a good set of non-runflat tires and mounting with expert dynamic balancing. Plus a Conti inflation kit. You will still have a bunch of money left over.
The new tires will make your car quieter, better riding and better handling. And, you will have no more problems with potholes than you would have had with any other car.
If you get a puncture, the the Conti pump will re-inflate your tire and inject sealant that will allow you to drive at least as far as you could with a run flat (or a temporary spare).
The only reason that we also have a full sized spare is that we spend too much time a long way from anywhere and wanted the peace of mind of knowing that we could always get home.
#127 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [atalaya505]
Sep 02, 2012 (11:24 am)
So, what you're saying is that the wheel and tire "protection" insurance is a money loser for the agent selling it, since wheel and tire issues are practically guaranteed with RFT's.
Obviously, you don't understand how insurance works...
Folks either seem to love or hate RFT's. And, it isn't too difficult to pick out either side by the comments they make.
Past driving experience is the sole best predictor of what one might expect in the future, all other conditions being equal.
There's a huge difference, however, between prediction and guarantee.
#128 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [busiris]
Sep 02, 2012 (11:47 am)
Not saying that RFTs are guaranteed to fail. Our oldest daughter and her husband wore through the RFTs that came on their 328xi with no failures. The same is probably true of most people who drive where the roads are reasonably good. Those of us who drive in areas where roads aren't so good are much more likely to have continuing problems. Ask Car and Driver about their experiences.
It just seems to me that if you are worried about RFT's, it doesn't make sense to spend the money on the insurance. For considerably less money you can mount a good set of non-RFTs and carry a Conti Mobility kit.
When the RFTs wore down, our daughter replaced the RFT's on their 328xi with conventional all-seasons. "That transformed the car", she said. "We should have done this from the beginning."
#129 of 136 Re: Wheel and tire insurance [atalaya505]
Sep 03, 2012 (11:48 am)
Depending on the size of the hole, the mobility kit may not seal it. But, while it may take awhile, you do have the free towing!
From a functional viewpoint, the advantage of a RFT is you choose where to stop within the max range of the safety margins. With regular tires, you must stop right away, or you'll trash the tire and probably the wheel (and maybe more, if the shreaded tire takes out brake lines, etc.).
RFT are getting better...Tirerack said on some of the newest generation ones they've tested, they rode as well as the equivalent normal tire in the same brand's family. The Goodyears I have on mine are not the greatest, but I do have some RFT winter Michelins I run for part of the year, and they're actually quieter and handle almost as well along with being a softer compound which lessens impacts.
Luckily, so far, I've not had a problem and hope to keep it that way!