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Thread: 2019 R1250 GS Hayes Brake Caliper Failure

  1. #16

    Find the positive

    Quote Originally Posted by skornet View Post
    I purchased a 2019 1250 RT in October and due to the weather turning cold only have about 450 miles on the bike. I was reading this thread this morning and went to check on my calipers. I did not see any fluid on the floor but after running my hand over the calipers I had brake fluid on my fingers. Pretty disappointing!
    Sad that you are dealing with a failure. On the positive side of things you found it during a time while you are not going to miss riding too much and your dealer might be able to do a quick turn around on the bike.

    Much better to find this type of thing in the garage instead of while riding. My 2019 had the same issue and was repaired before I picked it up by my dealer. I have had it about 4 days. I am enjoying it a great deal.

  2. #17

    Update

    Sorry for the delay in updating my situation. Recall from my op on 1-16-20 my bike was picked up by BMW on December 4th. It was returned to me from the Cincinnati dealership last Tuesday, 2-11-20. That is 70 days. In my simple mind in the repair world you submit your vehicle, the service technician would replace the faulty brakes with new ones (or given the history of the Hayes issue a new set of Brembos), and the bike would have been back in my garage December 11th at the latest. But this is what happened, who I have spoken with, and where things stand. Please note this is a long post as its intent is to help those who are in the initial stages of this problem with what they may encounter. I know I wish I would have had this information at least before I called roadside assistance but really before I bought the bike.

    1) I filed a complaint with the NHTSB shortly after op based on a suggestion on this thread. I filed it because I did not understand why BMW still had my bike after 6 weeks (at the time) and I had heard from no one at BMW and the dealership was unable to explain (not their fault) what BMW was doing or why it was taking so long. If it were a car in Indiana the Lemon Laws kick in after 30 days and it's a different conversation entirely.

    2) The BMW dealership in Cincinnati was fantastic as it relates to their communication with me. Unfortunately they were subjected to BMW's schedule in Germany which is dealing with this issue on a worldwide scope. Over the course of the first 4-6 weeks we had a Friday update call which usually was quick and was always summed up with the notion that BMW has requested more information/pictures of the calipers.

    3) BMW customer service contacted me a few days after noticing my post in "social media" (this site) and left a message stating that they were working on it. This was six weeks after they picked it up.

    4) After researching more about this issue while I continued to wait (this is late January by now) I stumbled upon a thread in https://advrider.com/f/threads/recal...50gsa.1407354/. At current count there are 19 pages of comments from people with this issue mostly from the U.S. and Canada. To be sure, the site is more brand agnostic than the MOA site but these are BMW owners commenting. As I stated in my op, in my opinion, there was not a lot of information (or I couldn't find it) to be gleaned from our (MOA) website on this issue. The comments thus far have been helpful but not actionable (except filing with NHTSA). However, the comments on the advrider site were robust and telling. The lack of communication from BMW after 7 weeks, no end in sight, combined with discovering a lot of disturbing information while learning of others' experiences brought me to the conclusion that I would seek legal advice because mentally I had thrown in the towel once I learned the scope of this problem (buy it back please and I'll start over with a nice pre-owned or maybe consider another manufacturer). Specifically at this point I wondered what rights I had as to the possibility of getting relief from a process afforded under the lemon laws. I consulted with the legal team affiliated with ABATE of Indiana. They confirmed what I already thought. In Indiana, I (or anyone) have no rights with respect to the lemon laws since it is a motorcycle and as such any remedy is solely available under the sellers' promises (warranty). Their suggestion was to hope my new brakes work or sell it which unfortunately I already suspected. BMW knows this and many of their policies dovetail with this law (e.g. don't inform the consumer for six weeks what's going on (because we can), but when he posts on BMWMOA we'll give him a shout and say "working on it.")

    5) In the meantime on Feb 3rd I received a call from a senior customer service person from BMW. This was not a "recorded line" type of call but an actual policy maker. He said I understand you have a concern your bike has been getting its brakes serviced and its been there a few extra days. I said no its been there 8 weeks but that is the least of my concerns. I then went on to say I understand the new brakes will arrive tomorrow from Germany, and there are extensive rounds of testing and protocols that need to be done on the new brakes (confirmed by BMW of Cincinnati), and we should be getting close to the end. He said yes. He was also kind enough to agree to have my bike transported back to my home given the winter conditions which is two hours west on I-70. I concluded by saying I really have one question knowing that the brakes are in and at this point I'm just waiting. I asked him how are the product liability lawyers at BMW corporate comfortable not issuing a recall/stop sale given that they've known about this issue since very early on after these models went on sale more than 12 months ago. He asked me to explain. I said ok look at it this way if a significant sample size of these bikes have brakes that fail and knowing a failure could kill someone, does that not open themselves up for a legal process and a public relations nightmare given they have known about this for over a year and not issued a recall/stop sale? After a pause, he simply said "have your brakes really failed?" I said two service advisers and BMW roadside assistance said they have so I'm going with that. My mind then wandered to a famous lyric from the canon of the minstrel group Pink Floyd who opined "when the band you're in starts playing different tunes..."

    6) The brakes arrived at the dealership on 2/4 (per dealership). The service advisor told me we would need several days to test the brakes and go through various protocols per Germany/service advisories and then assuming they pass we'll be done. Again, in my simple mind, I have implicitly assumed in life if I did need new brakes on any vehicle I owned they would install them and out the door I go. I've never heard of anyone having to have their new brakes tested for a week after they were installed. It is my understanding one of the tests is to have the brake lever actuated with a zip-tie overnight and make sure the calipers are not leaking the next day. They do this test on brand new brakes. Awesome. The good news is my new brakes passed the weeklong gauntlet including the zip-tie test. I received the bike one week later on 2/11 after all of the testings and it is resting in my garage. The bad news is per the aforementioned advrider website many folks are coming back in a 2nd, 3rd, and even 4th time. I don't know which flavor is on my bike out in the garage. Are these good? Will they need to be replaced one more time? Two? Who knows. I don't. And I'm going to go out on a limb and say I believe BMW does not know either since really BMW and I can't establish the fact together that the original brakes actually failed.

    7) Although my bike is back safe and sound in the garage I will wait and observe for awhile to look for visible evidence of caliper failure (failure is my word as noted above BMW just calls it leaking). Our winter weather gives me the patience to do that. One alternative solution was offered by someone in the advrider forum who said "Once I discovered my leak and knowing about the chaos of getting these right I decided to skip all the drama and purchased the Brembos out of my own pocket and had them installed for about $1200." They said they considered it an unavoidable "tax" to give them peace of mind. I find this the most palatable solution that I have seen and one that I will most likely pursue once the Indianapolis dealership is opened. Because at the end of the day this is a fantastic bike that I want to own and should have had Brembo's in the first place (in my opinion). Do I want remedy under the lemon law or an equivalent? No, I want what I thought I was getting: A great motorcycle with functioning and confidence inspiring brakes. Based on the totality of the situation and all of the information I have I do not feel I have confidence inspiring brakes but with another $1200 I will. The NHTSB seems to agree with me.

    8) If you file a claim with the NHTSB they will call you back and ask for your experience in excruciating detail. They called me on Thursday 2/13 and after being on the phone a long time with the investigator and retelling all of the facts of my experience I asked "am I crazy or over the top for feeling the way I do?" He laughed. He said my "problem" is common as it relates to this issue and in fact there are many people much more alarmed, angry, and even litigious. He went on to say the problem is big enough that he is not the only investigator on this issue but part of a "team" of investigators. I asked him "in your opinion and given all the others' data you are looking at I describe myself as one of an army of guinea pigs to snuff out this issue. Is that a fair assessment?" He said "yes and that term is used quite often by people like yourself when I speak with them about their cases." He said they continue to collect data (complaints) and will continue their "process". As a side note this person offered that part of the data he is collecting is not just complaints from customers but also from BMW technicians who are sending in information anonymously.

    I used to have a boss that would famously say "it's not about the money......well, yeah, it is about the money." And we would all laugh. Here, if I'm an exec at Motorrad I have no problem recalling/stop sale the 310 (which they did). Operating profits are a blip on that model as promulgated by BMW in their public earnings statements. The flagship 1250 and its variants? Different story and obviously a recall/stop sale on that model would be cumbersome for sure and very, very expensive. Not to mention the public relations nightmare. No in this case BMW has determined a zone defense is called for to "contain and manage". However with a zone defense you leave open seams and in this case seams that lead to the NHTSB, law firms with frisky lawyers looking for something to do, and state AG's. No one will ever know if BMW has picked the right (least costly) strategy but they certainly have picked one and are 12 months into executing it.

    If you have this problem with your brakes I am sorry. There are a lot of us out there. First, at the end of the day and the punchline from my two lengthy posts is if you do have this problem BMW (and your dealer) will work as long as it takes to fix your problem. But be forewarned it will be on their schedule. Second, you will get brakes back on your bike that will either work/last as designed or they will not and you should find that out in short order (see comments from people who are back for rounds 2,3 or 4). That's an obvious statement but not one many of us have ever considered let alone faced. What I have learned is you are on your own distinct and separate journey with BMW/Dealer to determine your problem, fix or replace it, and get you on your way. From when you call your dealer to when you get your bike back depends on several factors. Although my experience was 70 days yours may be better or not. One factor is BMW apparently cannot keep up with demand for new parts. BMW's primary focus right now is to keep the dealers happy because they are in a tough spot. As such, if they have new models on the floor that are leaking the service advisor on direction from the general manager will put any new brakes received from Germany on those first so they can be sold and then cross fingers and hope it doesn't come back for its round 1 fix/replacement. Then the in-service bikes stand in line like mine did. Another factor is the length of testing it takes depending on which variant of "the problem" you have (mating surface, o-rings etc.). The zip-tie test needs to be done overnight each time they do it for example.

    I will report back should the situation warrant it. But at this point my bike is back and I have brakes I do not trust. Absent a phone call from the chief BMW engineer and the head of BMW's product liability/GC's office to say "Hey we've thought this through and here is why you should not be concerned..." I will most likely buy the brembos when the new dealership here in Indy opens and move on. Good luck and safe riding.

  3. #18
    Debbie's Servant Lee's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update.
    Lee
    2016 R1200RS
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    Past BMW Bikes: 2011 K1300S, 2003 K1200RS, 1991 K75S, 1987 K75T, 1984 R100RT

  4. #19
    Registered User jandhumphreyme's Avatar
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    Yes, thank you for the update. Please post an update after you get some miles on the bike, like to hear how well the new calipers are holding up. Good luck.
    So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains
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  5. #20
    Fortis Fortuna Adiuvat Omega Man's Avatar
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    In Indiana, I (or anyone) have no rights with respect to the lemon laws since it is a motorcycle and as such any remedy is solely available under the sellers' promises (warranty).
    Been down that rabbit-hole here in Mass with a bike being gone for 2 months....Suzuki. Paid to repair out of my own pocket.
    Good luck.
    OM
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  6. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by gm81275 View Post
    Hi I am at my wits end and need some help. Searched the forum so sorry if I'm redundant here but cannot find an applicable thread. In late July I traded my 2014 GS 700 for a new 2019 R 1250 GS at Falcone BMW in Indianapolis. Nothing but joy as I broke in the engine rest of summer/fall. Performed break in service in October at dealership. Now the facts:

    Received notice that Falcone was closing its doors Oct. 31 and a new dealership (Tom Wood) would carry the franchise beginning in 2020. I thought no big deal and winterized the bike thinking I'm good until 6000 service at which time the new dealer would be up and running here.

    Early December as I walked past the bike to my car I noticed a fluid pool from front caliper on front rim. Called old service manager at Falcone who is now at another shop and asked what's up. He reported BMW knows about this and has known for some time and is surprised there is not a recall. He had several disaster stories of course (showroom bikes leaking, new bikes from BMW already leaking in the box upon arrival) and said of course to park it (already was for winter) and to either 1) wait until new dealership is live or 2) Call roadside and have it taken to Cincinnati BMW which is what I did. That was December 4th.

    When I called the Cincinnati service manager to say the bike is on the way he echoed the former service manager in Indy. He has seen the problem on several bikes (both showroom and in-service like mine), has no idea why there has not been a recall, and is getting no guidance from BMW other than "send the pictures in".

    Now that it is six weeks later and there is still no update I'm not sure what my remedies are other than to wait on BMW and at some point I presume to be told "we fixed it".

    My question is to anyone who can provide insight (technical, current BMW responses, product liability attorneys). If BMW head service advisors (one former, one current) are perplexed as to how BMW is handling this and acknowledge there are a bunch of us out there with faulty brakes, even has a service advisory out, then why has there not been a recall. All it takes is one death and BMW knowing of the problem to unleash a legal process, a massive PR problem (BMW knew about faulty brakes but let their customers keep riding), and certainly a customer loyalty issue.

    Lastly, when I get the bike back how will I know (absent putting Brembo's on which are on all 2020's) the "retooled" calipers are safe. BMW did not know the original brakes were not safe, now they want me to have my wife drive me two hours to Cincinnati, they flip me the keys, and I ride back on I-70? No thanks.
    I would not be too hasty purchasing Brembo calipers from BMW. I purchased a new 2018 GSA. The bike has Brembo calipers. At 6200 miles I was traveling along at 60 MPH and the right front caliper activated on it's own. By the time I could get safely stopped the rotor was cherry red and upon hitting the gravel berm the wheel locked up and skidded to stop. I got it to the dealer and they had it for three weeks while they dealt with BMW. The Dealer gave me a loaner bike while mine was in the shop. BMW finally shipped a new rotor and caliper from Germany and I got the bike back. The dealer could not find any problem with the brake system and BMW never asked for the caliper or rotor. They just replaced parts and told the dealer nothing. I have 35,000 miles on it now with no further problems, YET, but it is constantly on my mind when traveling. Good luck.

  7. #22
    When I was asking about what Beemer to buy, it was suggested NOT to buy the first year of a change. In this case it's a 1200 to a 1250. After reading this thread, that appears to have been very solid advice.

    What a mess with this issue, I'd be some hopping PO'd if I was without a new bike for 8 weeks. Especially if I was making payments on one.
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  8. #23
    Registered User WWeldin's Avatar
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    Is the 1250 GS chassis still the same as the prior year? I know on the RT is.

    Did the '18 GS have Brembos up front?

    My RT has Hayes on the fronts and Brembo on the rear. Strange.

    Good luck. Thanks for the informative update.
    2000 R1200C, 2019 R1250RT

  9. #24
    Well the issue was already with some 2019s and now with the 2020s. They know now for a year about the leaking Hayes calipers. I did not - when I traded my perfectly fine 2016 GSA against my 2020 GSa in December. After riding it home (75 mi) it has been sitting in the garage ever since. Called my dealer back in December and am still waiting for the new calipers to come in. Today the dealer told me they received a new bulletin that the calipers he ordered are no good and he needed to order different ones to be arriving the end of March...

    Today I stopped out of curiosity at a different dealership in northern WI. 3 GS/GSAs on the showroom floor with leaking calipers for sale!! This is incredulous. They were leaking so badly that drips were hanging off it and the caliper mounts were stained.

    Filed a complaint with NHTSA. Called BMW customer service which did not get me anywhere, except that they acknowledged I should try for a buy back if not resolved by the end of March. I have been a faithful BMW owner since 1998, but cannot believe this is being kept so hush hush by BMW. And nothing in the MOA magazine about it! MOA should be loyal to its members and stand up to the Marquee if warranted.

  10. #25
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    Brake caliper failure

    @gm81275 - have you asked BMW for compensation for the downtime; ie monthly payments and warranty extension?

  11. #26
    Registered User RIDERR1150GSADV's Avatar
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    The only thing I can say that if you're trading a 2014-2018 GS/A or RT for a new 1250, you can make the dealer swap the "old" Brembo calipers off your old bike onto the new bike.
    A few peeps down here have done that. It is the only workaround to get proper brakes on a new bike which really is a ridiculous thing to have to do.
    So happy I didn't become a beta tester for BMW.... YMMV
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  12. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by kaileybutt View Post
    @gm81275 - have you asked BMW for compensation for the downtime; ie monthly payments and warranty extension?
    No I have not. I gave them my perfectly fine 2014 700 and roughly $19K so I have no payments. In terms of a warranty extension I suppose I could have but where I live I consider the winter a "warranty eater" anyway and this happened during that time. My opinion might change if the new calipers start leaking but for now I would view it as simply exacting a pound of flesh. Probably warranted here but that's not me.

    No my issues continue to be existential in terms of my relationship going forward with BMW. Since 1997 we have bought 8 cars spending roughly $380K and two motorcycles for roughly $40K. We happily did this because we had a partner relationship based on engineering, safety, fun, and trust. People and companies make mistakes. It's how you respond that matters. For me and my wife, and now by extension my kids, BMW's response has shaken my belief in three of the four pillars in our relationship. That's for us to chew on going forward but for now as I stated before the bike is back safe in my garage and not exhibiting any caliper issues.

  13. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by gm81275 View Post
    No I have not. I gave them my perfectly fine 2014 700 and roughly $19K so I have no payments. In terms of a warranty extension I suppose I could have but where I live I consider the winter a "warranty eater" anyway and this happened during that time. My opinion might change if the new calipers start leaking but for now I would view it as simply exacting a pound of flesh. Probably warranted here but that's not me.

    No my issues continue to be existential in terms of my relationship going forward with BMW. Since 1997 we have bought 8 cars spending roughly $380K and two motorcycles for roughly $40K. We happily did this because we had a partner relationship based on engineering, safety, fun, and trust. People and companies make mistakes. It's how you respond that matters. For me and my wife, and now by extension my kids, BMW's response has shaken my belief in three of the four pillars in our relationship. That's for us to chew on going forward but for now as I stated before the bike is back safe in my garage and not exhibiting any caliper issues.
    I admire this attitude. Current behavior nowadays seems to be to yell and scream and threaten and pontificate, all from behind a keyboard - and then wonder why the dealer we used to relate to now thinks we are jerks.
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  14. #29
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    Brake Caliper Failure

    Quote Originally Posted by gm81275 View Post
    No I have not. I gave them my perfectly fine 2014 700 and roughly $19K so I have no payments. In terms of a warranty extension I suppose I could have but where I live I consider the winter a "warranty eater" anyway and this happened during that time. My opinion might change if the new calipers start leaking but for now I would view it as simply exacting a pound of flesh. Probably warranted here but that's not me.

    No my issues continue to be existential in terms of my relationship going forward with BMW. Since 1997 we have bought 8 cars spending roughly $380K and two motorcycles for roughly $40K. We happily did this because we had a partner relationship based on engineering, safety, fun, and trust. People and companies make mistakes. It's how you respond that matters. For me and my wife, and now by extension my kids, BMW's response has shaken my belief in three of the four pillars in our relationship. That's for us to chew on going forward but for now as I stated before the bike is back safe in my garage and not exhibiting any caliper issues.
    @gm81275 - well stated and kudos for being the good guy taking the high road. With your loyalty to the brand, I'm surprised BMW didn't offer you some relief as a goodwill gesture to mitigate the 'sour' experience with the calipers. An extended warranty costs them, essentially, nothing but rewards you for being loyal, perhaps a brand advocate and being very reasonable in your dealings with them.

    Hopefully this issue will be resolved quickly and become but a distant memory

  15. #30

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