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philip-pino 07-03-2012 11:13 PM

new to e46 m3
So I went ahead and bought an m3 from carmax that I've had my eye on for a good week.
I'm new to bmw's in general and was wondering about maintenance:

-How often should I get an oil change?
-What oil should I use to make sure the engine stays strong and healthy/clean?
-What grade of gas do you guys suggest?

Any help would be appreciated and thanks in advance!

Pinecone 07-04-2012 03:42 AM

1) There is a service indicator when you start the car. It tells you the number of miles until the oil change. When reset (look online to learn how to reset when you do an oil change) it starts at 15,525 miles, but the actual miles will depend on how much gas you burn. More gas, less miles. Some people change the oil at mid-point of the countdown (7750 miles).

There is also a requirement to change the oil every 12 months if you do not reach the mileage point. You do NOT reset the oil service indicator when doing this oil change, unless you are very close to hitting the mileage point (about 1 month of normal driving).

2) The ONLY oil that is approved with this engine is Castrol TWS or RS 10W-60. It is not a common oil. You can get from a dealer or some online shops. If you join the BMW CCA most dealers give you a nic discount, making the oil not too bad, but it isn't cheap. Since you are out of warranty, you can use whatever oil you want, but I use the Castrol TWS.

3) Only premium gas. I only buy from branded stations (Sheel, Rexaco, Exxon, BP, Sunoco), not off brand of independent stations. The car will actually produe more power using fuel up to about 96 AKI. This is about a 50/50 mix of pum premium and UNLEADED race gas. You can find unleaded race gas at some Sunoco stations.

philip-pino 07-04-2012 10:13 PM

Thanks for the help pinecone!
I plan to use chevron gas,since I've never seen/heard of a sunoco near my area.
But really appreciate it man,wanna baby this thing and make it last

Pinecone 07-05-2012 05:17 AM

There is a long tretise on gasoline online somewhere. The writer was/is a pteroleum engineer.

His point is all major brands of gas clean up deposits, but they also leave deposits. So he switched gas brands every 2000 miles. But he claimed that running only one brand of gas was not a good idea.

I just buy whatever is convenient of the major brands.

philip-pino 07-05-2012 12:48 PM

So mixing it up is alot safer huh?Thanks Pinecone!

philip-pino 07-05-2012 02:40 PM

Oh btw Pinecone,I hear alot of people saying that the m3 is expensive to maintain
What "maintenance" are they talking about specifically?anything that has to be done ritually?
When I had my civic all I worried about was oil change,alignments,and tire rotations..

Pinecone 07-06-2012 06:58 AM

The oil is not cheap to start with.

The car is a high performance car, typically subject to higher loads, so more things wear or break. And BMW service and parts are not the cheapest.

ECSTuning 07-06-2012 09:59 AM

Congrats on your M3 you're going to love it.

Great info Pinecone. Even thought the M3 will tell you when it's ready for an oil change, I've never gone by that I always change my oil around 7k miles. It's just a little reassurance that I'm taking care of my babies.

philip-pino when you're ready for you first oil change check out my oil change kit for the E46 M3 found HERE. It includes everything you need; oil, filter, new gaskets and washers, and a new drain plug.

Pinecone 07-07-2012 03:58 AM

I buy my oil from the dealer. With BMW CCA discount, it is $13.05 per liter.

Bav Auto has oil filters for $7.95 right now. I just ordered 8 (they fit all 3 Ms that I have).

mwhiteknight 07-27-2012 04:48 PM

Make sure you use castrol twe oil. Change oil every 7500 miles. Rear tire every 10 k miles Check your fan clutches well

hackbagger 09-09-2012 07:10 PM

mwhiteknight....change rear tires every 10K miles? how do you check a fan clutch?

mwhiteknight 09-09-2012 09:50 PM

my rear tire is shot every 10K miles, it is not matter what tire I put on for the rear. I do drive very hard.

Pinecone 09-10-2012 11:16 AM

Stop doing burnouts.

I get 25K miles out of tires, and this includes some track days.

mwhiteknight 09-10-2012 11:43 AM

it that 25K out of the rear tire. I can get that for the front tire but the rear is shot every 10K miles without doing donut.

Pinecone 09-11-2012 10:48 AM

Then your alignment is off.

I get 25K out of rear tires.

M3DOZA 10-04-2012 07:50 PM

Hello all! Guess my alignment is off as well since my rear tires go out quickly too! Think I only get 10k-12k on them. ; (

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