If you have ever had the experience of owning a German car, you know both the rewards and the pains of living with the product of meticulous engineering. These machines are designed with the expectation that every owner is as meticulous, attentive, and careful as the people who build them. The reward is the pleasure of being conveyed to your destination in a piece of clockwork precision. The punishment for disobeying the owner's manual is swift and decisive—often involving clouds of smoke and pools of leaking fluid.
Fluids as Parts
It is easy to think of a car as being defined as the metal, plastic, rubber, and glass bits. The various fluids—oils, fuel, coolants, grease—are thought of as additives, secondary to the "solid" parts of the car. This is a dangerous misconception, especially when the machine is German-engineered. All of the things that we love about German cars—precision, performance, feel, and response—are only possible because the liquid parts are engineered just as obsessively as the solid ones.
That is why there are unique blends of fluids for specific makes and models of German cars, even for seemingly minor engine and equipment variants within a particular model and year. When you own a German car, you need to think of fluids as parts, not additives.
Engine oil is, of course, the primary lubricant in all combustion engines and one of the most critical fluids to get right. The old rule of thumb was to change your oil at 3,000-mile intervals. Today's high-performance German cars often specify intervals that are 2, 3, or 4 times the old distance. This isn't just because the engines are better, but also because the oil is better—but only if you use the factory-approved oil blend. A quick-lube shop simply doesn't know these cars like a specialist does—and that can take years of enjoyment out of your car.
Transmission and gear oils
The transmission is the most intricate piece of mechanical equipment on your car. The overall health of your car is dependent on smooth and precise operation. The delicate parts and close tolerances inside the transmission of German cars mean that inexpert service—even for a simple fluid change—can cause permanent damage to the vehicle.
The two main types of coolant fluids are engine coolant, and brake fluid. These fluids are glycol-based are relatively cheap compared to expensive synthetic engine oil blends. However, coolant is one of the most important fluids in your car—and most German cars have factory-approved coolants as well.
The power steering system and even the exhaust system on high-efficiency clean diesel engines have fluids that require monitoring and replacement as part of a maintenance regimen. There are also various greases and other fluids that are found in every moving assembly in your car.
If you want to get the most out of your high-performance piece of German engineering, give one of our experienced technicians a call—don't sacrifice performance and durability with cheap imitations!
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