Q & A
Okay, this is the page that if it were titled FAQ, you would have avoided it. We will be constantly updating this page as we think of things, so stay tuned. Anyway, here goes:
Does it void my warranty if I have my BMW serviced by someone other than the dealer?
Absolutely not. The Magnussen-Moss warranty act was signed into law by President Gerald Ford in 1975. It prevents manufacturers from excluding consumers from warranty coverage based on preconditions for receiving service under warranty. If asked, a receipt for a purchase of oil would suffice as proof of maintenance should the issue arise. The “formative years” of your BMW are the building blocks of a long and happy life. Don’t take your bike to a facility that doesn’t encourage you to communicate directly with the tech working on your Beemer.
What is the story with BMW batteries?
well, we used to joke around the shop of the original BCW that BMW stood for “battery might work.” Obviously, a big part of battery reliability is the care and maintenance that goes into it. But that being said, there have always been a huge number of BMW batteries replaced under warranty (and meeting the criteria for replacement-proper care, etc.) As an example, I began experiencing problems with my 2008 R1200GSA that I felt may be battery related. The battery was three years old in March (as I write this, it is June,) and charged directly at the battery posts with a BMW charger every three weeks or so when not used frequently. I tested the battery the morning after a longer ride. It tested at 170 CCA (cold cranking amps.) It is rated at 200 CCA, so it was due to be replaced. Instead of replacing it with an identical battery, I installed a high performance Yuasa sealed battery (identical physical dimensions and post configurations.) I measured it’s output at 400 CCA! This battery sells at BCW for $99 and is made in the US (we hate having stuff shipped halfway around the planet if a US made product is equal or better quality.) That’s just one example, but if you need a battery for your BMW, we will sell you the one that fits your needs and budget best.
Does it make any difference what spark plugs are installed in my BMW?
In the past not so much. But there have been huge technological advances in the engine management systems of the newer bikes. The bikes run leaner and without a “margin of error” that they had in the past. On top of that there have been an unusual number of failures of the stock spark plugs specified by BMW on the R1200 models. BCW stocks and installs the Bosch dual ground spark plugs originally specified by BMW unless you specify otherwise. We also stock both the NGK standard dual ground electrode plugs and the NGK iridium plugs as well (for about the same cost as BMW charges for the standard ones). All of the F650 singles (regardless of year and model), wear out spark plugs very quickly. On these bikes, the NGK iridium plug is definitely recommended. If in doubt, ask your BCW tech when dropping off your bike.
Can I bring in parts bought somewhere else to have installed on my bike?
Sure. We are all watching our pennies these days and price is paramount in most folk’s minds. That includes having your parts shipped directly to us as your preferred installer. Of course, we would like to have you buy your parts from BCW. If you find a better price on something, let us know. Many people have already found out that we can compete on price and save you the hassle of getting the stuff yourself somewhere else. Don’t let price alone be the determining factor, though. Rarely does someone buy an item for a few dollars more, especially if it’s of better quality, and regret it later.
Tires are another story though. We no longer honor tires purchased elsewhere to be mounted and balanced here. This was a really tough decision but our operating costs have increased, and we had to make some changes. We will continue to offer the most competitive tire pricing for your BMW, Triumph or Moto Guzzi in San Francisco.
I see other brand of bikes in BCW sometimes. Do you guys work on other makes of motorcycles besides BMW?
We do, but only if we are confident that we can do a top-notch job. The TEXA diagnostic system we employ is compatible for virtually all the bikes out there. We have connection cables for Ducati, Triumph, Moto Guzzi, Suzuki, and more. Most of us and many of our clientele own multiple bikes and prefer to have all of their service work performed at one shop if possible. Communication between the vehicle’s owner and the servicing technician is the most crucial part of our relationship and your satisfaction. If you feel you can get that from BCW but not elsewhere, why go elsewhere? Plus we hate hearing your horror story after the fact or worse yet, fixing somebody else’s screw up on your dime. Ask us, we are as close as your phone…
Does BCW sell used parts?
Yep. But what we have is somewhat random (mostly Boxer stuff), and not entirely sorted. E-mail us with what you are looking for and we will let you know whether we have it, the price, condition, etc. Be sure of your purchase though, as all sales are final, and parts sold as is.
Do you ship parts?
Yes we can! Please let us know your full shipping address so that we can provide you with a shipping quote. Depending on the item(s) and sometimes your address, will determine if it will be shipped via UPS or US Postal Service. We currently do not ship via Fed Ex or other carriers at this time.
What forms of payment does BCW accept?
For in store payment, we accept Visa, Mastercard and American Express, as well as cash. However, checks are not accepted.
If you are purchasing from out of state for items to be shipped, payment must be received through Pay Pal.
Can I drop off my bike after hours?
That is totally up to you if you choose to leave it in front of our driveway after hours, though we’d recommend dropping it off before we open if absolutely necessary. We have a drop box with envelopes for you to fill out, sign, put your key inside, and drop into our mail slot.