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Old 2nd November 2012, 12:45   #1
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Default Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Hi guys ! This is to inform all my dear team-bhp.com guys regarding my new bmw 328i tire problem. I purchased my car on Aug 7 2012 from Infinity Mumbai & within 700 kms / 2 weeks of driving i noticed a large bubble on front left tire. This was replaced by bmw under my insurance BMW Secure (which i didnt realise ).

However within a week the same replaced tire developed a bubble, the BMW guys replied that since this seems to be "an issue " they will contact BMW India & try to replace my 225/45/18 tires & wheels with 225/50/17

I waited for 10 days and during these days 2 more tires developed Hugh bubbles ( front & back right side ).

I had a show down with BMW Infinity guys including BMW india guys with e mails & phone calls, they said this is not a manufacturing defect but due to fast driving on Bad pothole roads ! This was a also confirmed by Goodyear inspector !

They advised replacing the tires under Insurance, & since i have used all 4 tires, my insurance will not cover further damages to my car tires unto Aug 2013

Kindly advice me
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Old 2nd November 2012, 13:15   #2
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Default re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

RFTs are pretty sensitive to the road surface they run on. I personally know someone who had to replace the full set of tires on his 5 Series (previous gen) - due to frequent punctures. Call it unfortunate, but he had not opted for the BMW secure package. He uses tubeless tires now and everything is fine.

I guess the only option you have would be to get all 4 of them replaced with tubeless tires of the same specification. I cannot however comment on the impact of this action on BMW Secure though.

I'm pretty sure that other BMW owners on this forum would have faced similar (if not the same) issues with their RFTs.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 13:48   #3
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Default re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Say a firm and polite NO. This should not be replaced under insurance. Get this replaced under manufacturing defect.
3 tires developing bubbles cannot be attributed to bad roads.

While we would all pounce and suggest asking for replacement of car as it might appear to be factory misaligned in some sort but it really may not happen.

Get it in writing that if any tires develop further bulges, the alignment, balancing and new tires would be fitted free of cost ALL inclusive. Also a spare car or equivalent compensation needs to be provided for the time the car stays in the workshop for repair, tests. A near 40 lakh car with all Secure and similar schemes should COVER ALL such comedies.

They need to check for any alignment, balancing, suspension, struts to check for this behavior. Have them check on a professional machine if the rims are slightly bent or similar (this is highly unlikely).

Don't downgrade to 17". The 18" wheel design is exclusive to the 328i so they better not try to replace this.

Am sure, you would have known the slight harsh quality of 18" but then switching to 17" might kill the look by a substantial margin.

Ask BMW if they can fit a top end Michelin regular tubeless or similar tire. This might save them some cost and you continue to remain under warranty with a benefit in ride quality.

Last edited by dipen : 2nd November 2012 at 13:52.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 14:04   #4
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Default re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

My suggestion would be to try and change the brand of the tires from Goodyear to some other brand. If the problem reoccurs, then the fault is with the car only. However, this seems to be more of a an issue with the tires than the car.

It is not theoretically possible for a misalignment to cause the tires to develop bubbles/bulges. If the alignement was indeed so much out, you would surely have noticed the same while driving.

Let us know how this pans out.


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Old 2nd November 2012, 15:03   #5
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

To be frank with you, don't expect anything from them. I would say replace them under secure, and then be extra careful.

What tyre pressure do you keep? And also what area do you stay in?

These being 45 profiles you need to be extra careful with them and avoid going into all kinds of potholes unless it is almost at a crawl. These new generation runflats have much better ride, which is probably because they have made the sidewalls less stiff which makes them more delicate.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 17:45   #6
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Replace all tyres to tubeless ! Best decision I made to get rid of the RFT they are not only prone to sidewall damage but also a much worse ride quality.

However, you should be more careful when you drive with such low profile tyres
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Old 2nd November 2012, 20:03   #7
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisu View Post
My suggestion would be to try and change the brand of the tires from Goodyear to some other brand. If the problem reoccurs, then the fault is with the car only. However, this seems to be more of a an issue with the tires than the car.
The problem is very unlikely car related. It is tire and road conditions related. This RFT recommendation for BMW should not be implemented in India for sure. Places like US/Europe etc. it is an altogether different situation with the road conditions etc.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 20:12   #8
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Don't feel BMW will help out much in this. Replace the tyres under insurance ask them if they can get you tubeless ones - 5 Nos - in place of these. Seems to be an issue of Indian road conditions coupled with low profile of the tyres.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 20:37   #9
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

That's sad. I'd suggest you get new tires via the Secure package, wear the tires out (responsibly) and then swap them for non RFTs. Not only will the ride improve, the tires will be more reliable and cheaper to replace / repair.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dipen View Post
Ask BMW if they can fit a top end Michelin regular tubeless or similar tire. This might save them some cost and you continue to remain under warranty with a benefit in ride quality.
This will not happen! In fact, if you attempt to swap RFTs for regular tubeless tires on your BMW / MINI anywhere in the US / Europe etc forget BMW, even the regular tire-shops will not touch your car with a 10ft long barge-pole. They immediately object to the swap and say that they will only replace it with RFTs again, if need be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by akshay1234 View Post
TThese new generation runflats have much better ride, which is probably because they have made the sidewalls less stiff which makes them more delicate.
This is with reference to Bridgestone's 3rd-gen RFTs, right? I'm not sure about other brands but Bridgestone has specified that the side-wall has been softened for a better ride.

I had also read somewhere (I can't seem to remember now, been scouring the net for that article) that the new gen runflat tires' sidewall has actually gotten stiffer so that it copes with harsher road-conditions. Nothing about the ride-quality though. Not sure which brand either.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 22:05   #10
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

I just don't understand why BMW sticks to the RFTs. Even highways have potholes and its impossible to avoid all of them. Shouldn't they be selling cars that suit the driving conditions rather than the opposite? One of the reasons (another being over-budget ) I stayed away from BMW is the RFTs. And each damn thing costs a fortune.

Last edited by shivasuma : 2nd November 2012 at 22:15.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 22:11   #11
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

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Originally Posted by suhaas307 View Post
This will not happen! In fact, if you attempt to swap RFTs for regular tubeless tires on your BMW / MINI anywhere in the US / Europe etc forget BMW, even the regular tire-shops will not touch your car with a 10ft long barge-pole. They immediately object to the swap and say that they will only replace it with RFTs again, if need be.
Not entirely true. In India many customers under BSI have switched to regular tubeless of similar profile without voiding warranty. And the tire warranty is provided by the tire manufacturer and not by the car manufacturer. That is why the Goodyear engineer is inspecting the bubble in addition to BMW folks.
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Old 2nd November 2012, 22:49   #12
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Quote:
Originally Posted by dipen View Post
Not entirely true. In India many customers under BSI have switched to regular tubeless of similar profile without voiding warranty. And the tire warranty is provided by the tire manufacturer and not by the car manufacturer. That is why the Goodyear engineer is inspecting the bubble in addition to BMW folks.
Oh, that's good to hear.

I'd read on other BMW / MINI forums that they are very strict about tire swaps.

I'd take the runcraps off my Cooper S or 328i without even hesitating. The ride on an already stiff car becomes unbearable with them.
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Old 3rd November 2012, 01:31   #13
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Quote:
Originally Posted by suhaas307 View Post
Oh, that's good to hear.

I'd read on other BMW / MINI forums that they are very strict about tire swaps.

I'd take the runcraps off my Cooper S or 328i without even hesitating. The ride on an already stiff car becomes unbearable with them.
They don't void anything if you switch to tubeless. I just did.

And the 328i rides surprisingly well even with the RFTs and 18s.
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Old 5th November 2012, 14:53   #14
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

Since you are driving in Mumbai, I am convinced that we probably have some of the worst roads in the country. Not sure what strain of LSD the guys operating the road-rollers are on.

As one 328i owner to another, my average speed is 17Km/hr, haha. I've had her only for 2 weeks, so I'll be going through this soon enough, if I'm not careful. It's a shame, I have to drive this beast so slow with possibly everyone over-taking me. I literally crawl over pot-holes and badly designed speed breakers at 5Km/hr which covers most of the city.

A couple of suggestions,

- Don't switch to 17's especially if the alloys are being changed as well. That's just killing the car's look.
- As Akshay mentioned, the RFT 18's do surprisingly ride really well, but if your Secure has been exhausted and BMW offers no help, switch to Tube-less. I'm not sure if you can switch one at a time or if you have to change all 4 together. Sahil or Akshay might be able to confirm that.
- You might want to try Navnit, instead of Infinity. From my experience, they are a lot more tolerant.


I haven't filled air in mine yet, but at what pressure are you filling yours?

Most people including dealers mention 30 psi on all 4. But, if I'm not wrong, the sticker on the door or some forum mentions something like 32 in the front and 38 in the back or something. Anyone tried with the door specs? Or is 30 perfect?
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Old 14th November 2012, 17:20   #15
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Default Re: Tyre Bubbles on 1 month old BMW 328i RFTs

My honest and sincere advice, in the most straightforward way. Change from RFT to regular tubeless, and keep the speeds in check. Doing double ton speeds is very tempting but sacrifice that for everyday comfort and you will find your 3-series experience to be far more comfortable and rewarding. You may find the links below helpful:

Entire thread : http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...320d-help.html

Specific post : http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...ml#post1999593

I am now on my second set of Conti CPC2. Changed the old set just a month ago at about 47,000 km. This set should be enough to see me through our planned ownership, which is around 5 years. We are halfway through that, with a 2.5 year old car covered by a BSI for 100,000 km.
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