Basic Car Maintenance Everyone Should Know

Most people use their car every day without a second thought. They will get in, turn the key, and head out on their way. It’s almost always the case, unless you are a car person, that you don’t think something is in need of repair till a light shines or a weird noise starts to occur. Afterall keeping up with a vehicle requires some amount of attention. But what if you could minimize the likelihood of an expensive repair, by doing only simple maintenance items? In this post, we will look at simple car maintenance items you can do that will potentially save you from experiencing a catastrophic event or costly BMW car repair.


Tires are the essential features of your vehicle. They are what makes contact with the ground. Having good tires versus a bad one can make a huge difference. Have you ever experienced a tire blow out, or know someone that has? At high speeds having a tire, blow can be incredibly dangerous. It can also do much more damages than just having a flat tire. Almost all tire blowouts can be avoided by simply checking your tires periodically, and having them replaced when needed.

A good rule of thumb is to inspect your tires every month for wear, tread, and that they are correctly inflated. The tire sidewall will tell you the max psi they should be filled to. Overinflating can be just as bad as under, so it is best to stay a little below the max. Check for signs damage to the tires as well; if anything looks suspicious, you can take it to our German auto repair shop.


There is no way of avoiding the topic of engine oil when talking about the maintenance of a vehicle. It is the fluid that keeps everything in your engine working the way it should. Oil reduces friction of the metal movable parts within, and it an absolute must. Checking the oil isn’t as tricky as it sounds. Most vehicles are equipped with dipsticks that are labeled check oil on them. In fact, the dipstick will also have at the end clues as to if you are low on oil, clearly marked, low. If there is one maintenance item you should routinely do, and be in the habit of doing is checking the oil levels. If you find that your car is consistently low on oil, it could signal a leak or possibly other issues within the motor.


Lastly, make sure to maintain adequate coolant in your vehicle’s cooling system. Each car requires a different type of coolant. BMW recommends the use of their own specially formulated coolant for their vehicles to run at their best. TIP: Use caution when checking your coolant levels. Never try to open the radiator cap if your car has been running and reached it’s operating temperature. In doing so can cause injury. The coolant is a pressurized system. When it is hot, pressure builds, the second you turn the cap it will spray out. At close to 200 degrees, this is something you don’t want touching your skin. Instead, wait until your car has had time cool down or even better let it rest overnight and check before starting it in the morning.


Maintaining a good running vehicle is as simple as checking its primary components. These simple car tasks only take a few minutes and are well worth the time. Many repairs, breakdowns, or troubles can be avoided with proper care.

Getting Your Vehicle Road Trip Ready This Summer

Summer is still in full swing, which means there is plenty of time to hit the road and go out on an adventure. Using your own vehicle instead of renting is an excellent way to save money on your trip. But before you head out in the road, you may want to consider bringing in your vehicle to have it looked at. Having a BMW mechanic look over critical components of your car can help you to travel everywhere you need to go and everywhere in between. Car maintenance is key if you wish to have your last. The key services you should have done to ensure roadworthy performance include:

Oil Change

The oil change is essential for all engine function to run smoothly. Before long trips having an oil change done, especially if it is near servicing is ideal. While going over the mileage a little won’t necessarily hurt anything, a fresh oil change can help boost your MPG. Getting better fuel economy on long trips is great for saving a little bit of money at the pump. An oil change will also ensure that the fluid level is correct and where it should be.

A/C Check

Your vehicle’s air conditioning is vital. When temperatures reach over 100, driving in an unairconditioned car can feel more like torture than an exciting time waiting to reach your destination. An A/C check will inspect the freon, make sure the blower motor is working correctly. If your freon is low, the air conditioning will not blow as cold as it should. The elements of a car’s air conditioning system should only be handled by a professional. It can be very dangerous to try and fix issues with any pressurized system.

Coolant Services

Overheating is a common problem on long road trips. Having your upper and lower radiator hose inspected for signs of breakage or tears and making sure the coolant levels are correct will go a long way in keeping your engine cool on out of town road trips. A technician may also look over your radiator for any signs of damage that may lead to overheating. If you have had trouble with rising operating temperatures, have those addressed beforehand.

Tire Rotation/ Tire Replacement

Tires need to be in optimal condition for any drive you take. Older tires or those with worn out tread can potential blowout while driving. This is a very unsafe condition. Tire rotation will move the worn tires to the non-driving axle for better durability. However, if after a tire inspection you need to have a tire replaced, you should do so before hitting the road. A tire popping while out on the road will mean costly towing service and delays. Tire rotation is a simple service that should be done periodically and is part of most manufacturers recommended routine service.

Be sure that before you leave if your due for your routine scheduled maintenance to have it performed. This includes the 30k, 60k, and 90k services. If your air filter needs to be changed, it’s a good idea to have this done as well. It can improve fuel economy along with an oil change. Have your German car service done with the best at Ryan GMW.

What Is A Tire Sidewall?

Invision driving down the road and all of a sudden your tire blows out. Tire blowouts can be a frightening experience and a dangerous one at high speeds. Tires have a limited, and it’s dependant on a few factors. They are affected by road conditions, the amount of mileage put on them, and age. When the time comes to replace a tire(s), you will want to find the appropriate tire size that works for your vehicle.

How do you know what tire you would need to order? While you can bring your car into the German Auto Specialist at Ryan GMW to get your tires rotated, you can also have tires ordered that fit your vehicle perfectly. Most know that the tire size is found directly on the tire. Your vehicle will likely also have a tag indicating the appropriate tire size to fit on factory wheels that came on your car. However, if you have changed the wheels on your car, the tire size could be different.

If you want to change your wheels to an aftermarket set, or simply order tires to fit your existing one, being able to decode a tire label is handy. Let’s break down the essential information that appears on the sidewall of a tire to gain a better understanding.

In this picture, you’ll see the need to know info about the tire. Right now it may look like just numbers with a sprinkle of letters here, but let’s start decoding. You’ll want to read the tire left to right as you usually would. No trickier here!

The first letter that appears, in this case, P, is the type of vehicle the tire is suitable for. The P means a passenger vehicle. Other options include:

T – Temporary Spare
LT – Light Truck
C – Commercial
ST – Special Trailer

Next, you’ll see a set of numbers. These groups of numbers indicate the size of the tire and are the most useful to know. The first set, in this case, 215, indicates the section width. It measures in millimeters the width from sidewall to the sidewall at it’s widest point. Next, the following two-digit number, 55, is the aspect ratio which is the height of the sidewall compared to the width. The bigger the aspect ratio number is, the bigger the sidewall.

There may or may not be a letter present in between the last set of numbers. For this example there is. The R represents that the tire is Radial, which just means the layers run radially across.

Finally, the last set of numbers, 17, indicates the wheel size by its diameter. This number is probably the most essential to know, depending on who you ask. If you order or receive the wrong wheel size tire, it won’t fit, not in a million years. Wheel size varies, so checking your tire can help identify what size wheel you have if you don’t know. They can come as small as 15 and go up to 22 or even larger. However, most vehicles come stock with 16,17 or 18 which are standard.

There’s plenty of other information on the tire, including its manufacturer and DOT specs such as it’s load rating, but the string of numbers above are the most essential to know. A BMW Mechanic Near Me can help to put new tires on, rotate, and order the correct size to fit your vehicle for the best road performance.

BMW Maintenance Tips

When you own a BMW, there are a few things you will want to do over the course of your ownership to ensure that it is running at peak performance as well as being a safe driver for you and your family. A reputable BMW shop will be able to assist you with all of the maintenance your car will need. Below are some of the best maintenance items that should be done routinely as part of owning a BMW that will last for years to come.

Have Regular Oil Changes Done

It will be the hands down best service tip you will ever do for your vehicle’s engine life. The engine is the heart of the car and one of the most expensive repairs you would ever have to do. To avoid major issues, giving your BMW regular oil changes will extend the engine’s life while giving you added performance as well as better fuel economy.

Replace or Clean your Air Filter

Your engine runs with a combination of air and fuel, and a dirty air filter will give you less performance and fuel economy. Periodically changing or cleaning your air filter will give you many benefits as well as allowing your engine to breathe easier. If you have replaced your stock air filter with an aftermarket one, like a K&N air filter, it will need to be cleaned, not replaced. A stock air filter will need to be changed out for a new one. It is one of the easiest maintenance items you can do to increase your horsepower as well.

Check the Status of your Tires

Tires play an intricate part in how your car will drive. If your tires are too worn or are wearing unevenly, you will feel it in the way your vehicle drives. It is best to replace your tires when they have worn down, and periodically rotate and balance them for an even wear on all four corners. One other aspect you shouldn’t overlook is your tire pressure. It is best to check your tire pressure somewhat frequently to make sure all tires are the same pressure and meet manufacturer specifications.

Check and Double Check your Fluid Levels

You may be accustomed to only checking fluids if something isn’t running right. It is an excellent idea to regularly stop and check the levels at least every three months. You should check your oil, transmission, coolant, power steering, and brake fluid levels. If you do it all at the same time, it will make it easier to monitor their levels.


Owning a BMW is a great adventure, and if you are good at it, it will be good to you. So check, replace, refill these items when needed. The best possible tip doesn’t put off repairs. If your BMW is making noises, take it to a reputable BMW auto repair shop to have it looked. These tips will help prevent large issues as well as help your BMW last longer.