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Old 06-29-2009, 03:46 PM   #1
5Chord OP
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Roadside Assistance Nightmare (X country)

I was all set to go on a MA trip with my bike club with my '09 BMW Xcountry and was getting cash for the excursion at an ATM near my home about 10pm Friday.

I got the cash, put a leg over the bike and.......It wouldn't start. It was not the 1st time and the bike had been in the shop for this problem once before. I always wait 15 minutes and the bike would immediately start. Not this time. So I called a nearby friend who gave me a ride to my house. I gave it another leisurely 1/2 hour, drove down to the bike (2 miles away) and it was still dead.

I knew at this point it was too risky to take it on the overnight trip, so I called BMW Roadside assistance (and a bike club member). Roadside asked what the problem was and I told them about the intermittent starting problem and I would like it towed to the dealer. They asked if a jump would help and I said it might, but getting to the battery required tools and was no easy task. The woman told me there would be no problem as the towing technicians worked on BMW bikes.

An hour later a guy showed up in a 90's era Toyota sedan and had no idea he was jumping a motorcycle and obviously was not giving me a tow. He called his boss and was told I would have to call back BMW Roadside. I did and right after the recording said" This call may be recorded for quality control purposes" the call was dropped. I tried it 7-8 times and figured it was probably my cell phone and drove home to try it there and it was the same!

I suddenly realized I had AMA Roadside Assistance! Ha! I would show them! I immediately got a nice gentleman on the phone who after getting my info told me he had one guy about 5 miles away who could give me a tow. He explained I would have to pay a $55 fee for overnight storage as BMW of Manhattan doesn't have a 24 hour drop off.

I said fine. He put me on hold for another few minutes and told me "Umm, they're not answering their phone anymore" He then told me there wasn't anybody else and maybe he could call me back when someone was available, like tomorrow? I told them they all sucked and hung up. Luckily I own a trailer.

It took me another hour, but I got the trailer, loaded it myself, brought the bike home and dropped the trailer back off (at my store) and by 1am was in bed.

I just put a new battery in it and will prepare to do battle with the BMW of Manhattan stealership.....To be continued
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Old 06-29-2009, 03:54 PM   #2
ventouxbob
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I had starting problems with my F650 also. got rid of it.
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Old 06-29-2009, 04:31 PM   #3
GB
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Moved to Thumpers.

Most likely a defective battery.
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Old 06-29-2009, 07:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadget Boy
Moved to Thumpers.

Most likely a defective battery.
Yeah, this was mostly a rant about how crappy ALL roadside assistance is.

BMW said exactly that, and (supposedly) replaced the battery two weeks ago. I replaced it myself today. The OEM BMW battery was TOTALLY dead. I have a sinking feeling the Xcountry cannot handle the load of the newly added heated grips, and PIA rally lights (on top of the extra load of the ABS). Or, they installed something wrong and it's draining the battery. Fortunately, BMW of Manhattan ordered and installed everything so there's only one finger to point.
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5Chord
Yeah, this was mostly a rant about how crappy ALL roadside assistance is.
Wow, no kidding. What good is it if they don't answer the phone, can't come, and when they do send somebody they don't have a clue?

You would have been better off to have just pushed the bike 2 miles home. It would not only have been faster, it would have been less effort.
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:28 PM   #6
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I had Ford roadside assistance. They give you a 200 point quiz about your VIN, location, color of your vehicle, how many people are with you, if you are in danger, what you had for dinner, the smell of your last BM, and on and on. It felt like I called a 900 number and I was paying by the minute.

After your phone goes dead from all the BS they never show up.

I'll bet your experience indicates an industry trend.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:13 PM   #7
montesa_vr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adaycj
I had Ford roadside assistance. They give you a 200 point quiz about your VIN, location, color of your vehicle, how many people are with you, if you are in danger, what you had for dinner, the smell of your last BM, and on and on. It felt like I called a 900 number and I was paying by the minute.

After your phone goes dead from all the BS they never show up.

I'll bet your experience indicates an industry trend.
LOL! A classic post. Thanks.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:18 PM   #8
plumber mike
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It sets my mind at ease knowing I just put my RA card in my wallet. And then to hear about the wonderful service you received...... I'm more concerned about the electrical gremlins on your bike Keep us posted.
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Old 06-29-2009, 09:44 PM   #9
Django Loco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5Chord
Yeah, this was mostly a rant about how crappy ALL roadside assistance is.

BMW said exactly that, and (supposedly) replaced the battery two weeks ago. I replaced it myself today. The OEM BMW battery was TOTALLY dead. I have a sinking feeling the Xcountry cannot handle the load of the newly added heated grips, and PIA rally lights (on top of the extra load of the ABS). Or, they installed something wrong and it's draining the battery. Fortunately, BMW of Manhattan ordered and installed everything so there's only one finger to point.
This is very typical of BMW's and in particular the singles. Bottom line is they have NO IDEA how to design and electrical system. The old F650's did the same thing .... cooked batteries, fried components. And not just once but forever, over and over. Can you say Lemon Law?

The other problem is BMW guys don't seem to be real good at doing diagnostics. I don't think the X series bikes have CAN bus ... do they? If so,
my condolences. If not, then I'd suggest you get in there and figure out where the weak components are and replace them. I've heard Reg/rectifiers
go bad or over charge the Batteries on the X series bikes.

This is stuff the Japanese solved in the early 70's. So basic. BMW are not there yet.

Now why is that?
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Old 06-30-2009, 06:17 AM   #10
5Chord OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plumber mike
It sets my mind at ease knowing I just put my RA card in my wallet. And then to hear about the wonderful service you received...... I'm more concerned about the electrical gremlins on your bike Keep us posted.
Yeah I don't get that warm fuzzy feeling anymore looking at my BMW RA card...........BMW of Manhattan will get a call today regarding the dead battery. I'll keep you posted.
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Old 06-30-2009, 06:22 AM   #11
5Chord OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by montesa_vr
You would have been better off to have just pushed the bike 2 miles home. It would not only have been faster, it would have been less effort.
Nah, it's a 45 min walk without a 350lb bike. Plus there are several hills, most of them up. Maybe if I was in my 20's and had a few Red Bulls


And remember: "Luckily I own a trailer. It took me another hour, but I got the trailer, loaded it myself, brought the bike home and dropped the trailer back off (at my store) and by 1am was in bed.
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Old 06-30-2009, 07:45 AM   #12
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Laugh

The only thing better than having your own bike lift in the garage is having your own rescue trailer and a wife who knows how to use it!
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:27 AM   #13
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i had a similar experience with BMW roadside assistance in Manhattan a few year ago. long story short, after being told they had no trucks available to tow a bike, i rode to the dealer on a flat tire and left the bike in front of their service door. i kept the key (so in a way, they DO have night drop off).

but they got the last laugh; charging me a ridiculous amount to change the flat.

that's the one and only time i've (tried) to use BMW roadside. with my 2 other problems, i've used roadside offered through my insurance, with MUCH better results.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:34 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5Chord
Yeah, this was mostly a rant about how crappy ALL roadside assistance is.
If youse got the AMA roadside assistance I would assume youse are a AMA member, in which case you're a fool for not joining the AMA Helping Hands program, which is a programs of riders helping fellow riders broke down on the side of the road. Don't know how riders are in New Yawk, but out here in Nevada I've had a Helping Hand drop everything and blow the rest of their day to come pick me up in the middle of no where US50, returning my bike and me to my front door.
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Old 06-30-2009, 02:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdxkawboy
If youse got the AMA roadside assistance I would assume youse are a AMA member, in which case you're a fool for not joining the AMA Helping Hands program, which is a programs of riders helping fellow riders broke down on the side of the road. Don't know how riders are in New Yawk, but out here in Nevada I've had a Helping Hand drop everything and blow the rest of their day to come pick me up in the middle of no where US50, returning my bike and me to my front door.

You mentioned this back in 2006 in this thread.

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=146184

I can't find much on it. I even tried a google search for ""ama helping hands motorcycle" and the first page or two only lists your post linked above that is relevant.

Care to elaborate? It sounds interesting.
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