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Are BMW 5 Series Expensive to Maintain?

BY: Andrew Giorgi
Close up side view of an orange BMW luxury car

BMW is a German car brand long renowned for its luxurious vehicles, which marry performance with sophistication. However, alongside this reputation, BMWs are also often associated with high maintenance and repair costs due to the luxurious materials and parts used to create the vehicle.

Every car, regardless of how well it’s built, can encounter repair issues after years on the road. Knowing the costs of maintaining your BMW 5 Series can help you plan for these repairs down the road.

Factors Influencing Maintenance Costs

For reference, BMW vehicles have an average yearly repair and maintenance cost of just under $1,000. Having to throw $1,000 into your vehicle for repairs suddenly can be a challenge for most automotive owners. However, it may be unclear what is actually going into this hefty average cost, especially if you’re used to car brands with lower maintenance costs.

On the surface, the most expensive factors that influence the overall cost are the age of your BMW, its mileage, your driving habits, and even the regional differences in labor rates and parts pricing. The best way to reduce the cost associated with these factors is to simply engage in preventative maintenance on a regular basis by adhering to BMW’s routine maintenance schedule. The purpose of this is to keep all major parts in working order by addressing smaller issues before they compound.

Parts Pricing and Availability

Given BMW’s status as a luxury brand, the pricing for parts and availability often come at a premium compared to non-luxury counterparts. This means beyond just repair costs, you may also have to contend with long waiting periods before parts become available. In an effort to mitigate these expenses, some BMW owners even opt for aftermarket parts or explore alternative solutions for original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts.

To put the repair costs of certain crucial parts into perspective, consider the following average part replacements for BMWs:

  • Oxygen Sensor: $556 to $663
  • Spark Plug: $236 to $342
  • Alternator: $1,265 to $1,504
  • Mass Airflow Sensor: $466 to $685
  • Exhaust Muffler: $2,305 to $2,343

The above is just the beginning, as these are only a few of the crucial parts under the hood. Be aware that if you’re not going to take care of preventative maintenance, issues can compound, resulting in multiple parts breaking at once. This means you could be looking at a repair cost well over $1,000, which might require you to dip into your emergency savings to cover the cost.

Service Intervals and Common Repairs

With all of the above factors and nuances to consider, it’s also worth looking at regular service intervals for the BMW 5 Series, as well as some common repairs you may be faced with. Remember that all BMW models will differ slightly in their schedule and the tasks that must be performed, but the following are most commonly seen:

Every 5,000 Miles

  • Get a vehicle check and inspection performed
  • Check the brake fluid
  • Check the coolant
  • Check the engine oil
  • Inspect the front and rear brakes
  • Inspect the engine and cabin air filters
  • Inspect the windshield wipers, especially in a climate with poor weather
  • Rotate your tires

10,000 Miles

  • Replace the engine oil (oil change), oil filter, and coolant
  • Repeat the above every 10,000 miles

20,000 Miles

  • Inspect and replace the fuel filters
  • Repeat the above every 20,000 miles

30,000 Miles

  • Replace the brake fluid (after the first replacement, it can be replaced at every 60,000-mile intervals)

60,000 Miles

  • Replace the engine air filter and spark plugs
  • Inspect and replace the brake pads and brake rotors as needed
  • Repeat the above every 60,000 miles

90,000 Miles+

  • Replace the timing belt and hoses
  • Continue with the above schedule at each respective interval

In addition to all of the above service tasks, consider adding seasonal maintenance jobs into your rotation as well. While these will occur on a quicker basis, they help you to go the extra mile to protect your vehicle.

For example, in the summertime, you should consider replacing your windshield wipers to repair them for the upcoming rain, tune up your air conditioning, and replace the air filter. By contrast, in the winter, you should consider checking up on the antifreeze under the hood, inspecting the tire tread to ensure traction is maintained, and checking your battery. On top of all of this, don’t forget to simply keep your BMW 5 Series clean to avoid corrosion and damage to the exterior and interior components.

Regardless of whether you drive high-performance expensive cars, cheap cars, or something in between, preventative maintenance is crucial to keeping your vehicle safe. Don’t forget that if you are driving a BMW 3 series vs. BMW 7 series, as an example, then the requirements will differ for your BMW ultimate care. On the same line of thinking, a used BMW and a new BMW will have different requirements, so take the time to research your specific model and refer to your dealership to see if you can download a maintenance schedule.

The Impact of Complex Electronics and Proprietary Systems

One significant factor that contributes to BMW’s maintenance costs is its advanced electronics and proprietary systems. BMWs are equipped with sophisticated technology, including infotainment systems, advanced driver assistance systems, and complex engine management systems. This often includes a myriad of smaller components, such as cameras and sensors.

Servicing these systems requires specialized knowledge and tools, which directly lead to higher labor rates and longer repair times. As new technology such as artificial intelligence (AI) and general automated driving begin to evolve, it’s only a matter of time until repair costs skyrocket to new heights. This is why it’s essential for BMW owners to handle preventative maintenance to avoid major repairs, yet it is also essential for owners to seek out qualified technicians with experience working on BMW vehicles to ensure proper diagnosis and repair for electronic issues.

Extended Warranty Coverage for BMWs

Adding an extended car warranty to your BMW 5 Series can be an excellent choice for additional protection on your vehicle. For those unfamiliar, an extended warranty acts similarly to a manufacturer’s warranty in that it provides financial protection against covered breakdowns. Don’t mistake extended warranty for car insurance, however, with the latter being used in the event of a car accident rather than a breakdown. While an extended warranty can be offered by the manufacturer of a car, it tends to be more expensive and provides less coverage than those offered by third parties.

Extended warranties can act as a financial safeguard against high maintenance and repair costs for BMW owners. These warranties also often come in different levels, with some offering very little coverage for only the largest parts under the hoods and others offering more comprehensive coverage. Providers like Endurance Warranty can help protect your BMW by covering the majority of issues that can arise. In particular, those with the 5 Series can enjoy comprehensive coverage from Endurance, including protection for electronic components and the major mechanical systems.

The Value of an Extended Warranty for BMW Owners

After looking into adding an extended warranty contract to your BMW, you may have noticed the cost associated with warranty packages. While for some, this may seem like a hefty price to pay for something that may never be needed, it’s best to think about an extended warranty as an investment. While you are putting funds into a warranty package, consider the financial upside in the form of potential savings when unexpected repairs and maintenance tasks inevitably arise.

BMW owners can enjoy partnering with third-party providers such as Endurance Warranty because we offer personalized auto protection plans and a wide range of benefits. BMW, on the other hand, only offers two extended warranty plans that limit the coverage options that you can use.

On top of this, you can only purchase a BMW extended warranty if you already have an active BMW standard warranty from when the car was purchased. This is why extended warranties from third-party providers have such value, not to mention the fact that third-party warranty providers partner with trusted repair shops so you can be sure your vehicle is being taken care of by the best of the best.

Protect Your Luxury Car With Endurance

When operating a high-end vehicle like a BMW, the last thing you want is to be unprotected. Even with a manufacturer’s warranty from the dealership, BMW repair jobs may still fall outside of the standard coverage. A vehicle service contract from Endurance Warranty can be the perfect way to fill the gap in this coverage.

With Endurance, you can choose from multiple auto protection plans, each offering a unique blend of protection for the parts under your hood, or customize your own plan. With coverage ranging from simple high-level stated coverage to near bumper-to-bumper coverage, you can rest easy behind the wheel, knowing Endurance has your back.

Reduced maintenance and repair costs are only the tip of the iceberg, though, as each Endurance contract comes with standard perks such as 24/7 roadside assistance and rental car reimbursement. New customers can also activate our Elite Benefits package, including up to $1,000 in total loss protection, complete tire coverage, up to $500 in collision coverage, and more.

To learn how Endurance can protect you and your BMW, call our award-winning customer service team at (800) 253-8203 and request a FREE quote. Alternatively, you can shop online to see your price right away.

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