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(Published in der Bayerische, magazine of the National Capitol Chapter BMW Club of America, November/December 2018

DIY for Beginners…

By Christine McKee

A DIY is a great perk offered by the BMW Club.  At a DIY, an area BMW repair shop opens its doors for members to service their cars onsite. Members save loads of money by not having to pay the labor costs for fluid changes to front end alignments to installation of filters, mufflers, wiper blades, etc.

But what do you do at a DIY when you don’t know how to do…anything?

Here’s seven tips I learned for navigating the DIY experience:

  1. Email the DIY coordinator to reserve your slot ASAP (slots go quickly).  Leave your contact information and the service(s) you want to perform. Let the coordinator know you need much help; fortunately there are knowledgeable club members who show up solely to help.
  2. Arrive early to sign in; it’s first come, first on the car lifts. And be sure to dress to impress:  old clothes that you look greasy-good in.
  3. I strongly suggest you buy all your supplies from the DIY repair shop host. It’s only polite.
  4. If another member is assigned to help you with your repairs, then you should plan to stay to help that member with their repairs.
  5. How can you help when you’re clueless? Hold the flash light under the carriage for the mechanic; keep track of parts, screws, etc.; keep your workspace organized and clean; learn to run the lift, and anything else that strikes your fancy (BMW members love to teach.)
  6. Free morning coffee and donuts. Free pizza for lunch.  ‘Nuf said.
  7. Enjoy the experience!