Common Problems with BMW 550i

The BMW 550i is the perfect sedan for individuals who desire power, comfort, and performance all in one. This car is also brilliantly designed and easily captivates passersby.  Nonetheless, like every other BMW Model, the 550i also has some issues. But what are the common problems with BMW 550i?

Some of the common problems that BMW 550i owners should expect to face in the future include engine overheating, water pump damage, steering wheel noises, air conditioning issues, rear window wiper failure, and timing chain problems.

Note that these issues occur on most BMW 500i models but not all of them. Besides, fixing these challenges is quite easy but costly at the same time. What’s more, you may need to take your car to a certified BMW mechanic or BMW service center to avoid voiding the warranty during repair or maintenance. 

What are the common problems with the BMW 550i?

Water pump damage

One of the common problems that BMW 550i owners are likely to face is water pump or thermostat issues. This is because the cooling system fails most of the time and it is responsible for about a quarter of the issues that the BMW 550i faces. 

So, it is important to always inspect the water pump and thermostat. If you find any damage to these parts, replace them as soon as possible. Always check the check engine light and temperature gauge for any signs of a damaged cooling system.

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Engine overheating

Overheating engines is common across all types of BMWs. This is also directly related to a failing thermostat and water pump damage. Therefore, if the thermostat or water pump fails, the engine will overheat. As a result, this will lead to all sorts of problems for the car’s engine.

Hence, you should ensure that the thermostat, water pump, and other cooling system parts are working as needed.

Steering wheel noises

This problem is very common, more so, when driving at low speeds. Some BMW 550i users have reported that they hear squeaking noises emanating from the steering wheel. Aside from driving at low speeds, this noise can also be heard when turning the steering wheel from a full lock on one side to the other.

Steering wheel noises usually occur because of a lack of lubrication on the steering rack. So, ensure to apply lubrication to prevent this noise from taking place.

Timing chain problems

One of the common timing chain problems is timing chain snapping. When your BMW 550i undergoes such an issue, you may have to take your car to a BMW service center for realignment of the chain or to replace it with a new one if it’s damaged.

Faulty fuel pump

This problem is not very common on the BMW 550i, but it still happens. It is very common on the BMW 535i models. When the fuel pump fails to work properly, it also affects engine performance, which affects the overall performance of the car.

Air conditioning problems

Another common issue that BMW 550i owners should be ready to deal with is the air conditioning system failing to work properly. Some users have reported the fan’s speed changing suddenly. Others have reported the air conditioning blowing only cold air on the lower settings.

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Most of the air conditioning problems are caused by a faulty blower motor resistor. So, this part should be inspected and replaced if need be.

Worn-out tensioners

When tensioners wear out, you will start hearing a squealing noise from the engine bay. Therefore, if you hear such a noise, start by inspecting your car’s engine belts. After covering several miles, the engine belt can crack or wear out. To solve this issue, you will have to replace the belts.


Is the BMW 550i reliable?

BMW 550i is among the least reliable BMW 5-Series. Unlike the BMW 3-Series that rank slightly above average, the 550i ranks almost bottom last. So, if you’re searching to buy a reliable and dependable used BMW 550i, stay away from this model.

According to, it ranks the BMW 550i model at position 29th out of 30th, indicating how unreliable the BMW 550i is. 

What is the high mileage for BMW 550i?

BMW 550i is one of the most durable BMWs ever made. So, these cars can run for over 200,000 miles as long as they are well-maintained. Nonetheless, a BMW 550i with more than 150,000 miles is considered to have high mileage. So, if you’re buying a used BMW 550i, consider one that has not clocked over 150k miles.

Is the BMW 550i expensive to maintain?

Yes, the BMW 550i is very expensive to maintain. Actually, BMW is the most expensive luxury car brand to repair and maintain. For instance, the BMW 550i annual repair and maintenance cost is around $1050, while that of Audi A3 is around $870. This is almost $200 more than Audi A3.

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The main reason why BMWs are costlier to maintain than other luxury cars is because of the high cost of BMW spare parts. What’s more, some BMW parts are cumbersome to repair, making technicians charge more because of the work they have to put in place. 

What year BMW 5-Series is the most reliable?

BMW 5-Series is one of the most powerful, advanced, and practical sedans on the market. But like any other BMW series, some cars in the series are more reliable than others. In this case, the 2020 BMW 5 Series is the most reliable model year in the series. This model registers fewer issues than other models.

What are some of the common problems with the BMW 5-Series?

The BMW 5-Series produces some of the most powerful, comfortable, practical, and high-performance sedans on the market. However, they also have several issues that they face over time and they include timing chain problems, air conditioning challenges, cooling system failure, sunroof seals issues, and faulty fuel pump.


The BMW 550i may be a powerful, advanced, and excellent sedan, but it also has several challenges that interested buyers should know about. Some of the challenges that owners of this car should expect to face along the way include water pump damage, engine overheating, timing chain issues, steering wheel noises, air conditioning issues, and rear window wiper failure.

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Edwin Odipo

Why do you love writing about cars? Cars make our lives easy. You can visit your distant friend, relative or even rush to the grocery store a few miles from your home with a lot of ease. Imagine how life was before the invention of cars?? To me, cars are a blessing that made life more convenient.

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