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-   -   What fuel to use for X5 (http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=678056)

amt7565 02-23-2013 04:03 AM

What fuel to use for X5
 
I have been diligently using only 93 Octane fuel for my 3 series. Now upgrading to an X5.

Will a 91 suffice? Thoughts?

dcharnet 02-23-2013 04:23 AM

"Suffice" is very subjective. The X5 will run fine on 87 or above but at 87 will be down a little on power, and, some say, MPG. In normal driving it is hard for me to feel or see any difference. These are not race cars, after all. The difference between 93 and 91 is immaterial. The most important thing is to buy "top tier" fuel with decent additives.

amt7565 02-23-2013 04:29 AM

What is "top tier" ?

Frank-O 02-23-2013 06:15 AM

I know my Audi actually lists the brands that Audi suggest for us in my S4 as top tier, I wonder if BMW does the same?

amt7565 02-23-2013 06:32 AM

I will check. The 3 series I had did come recommended with a higher octane though. This was from back in 2005.

dcharnet 02-23-2013 11:30 AM

"Top tier" is a voluntary industry labeling standard regarding fuel quality, especially additives. It was implemented by several major brands such as Shell at the request of BMW, Mercedes, Porsche and perhaps others to insure that their vehicles had available to them a high quality fuel. Anyone posting the top tier logo has to meet certain specs. Some of the major gas companies refused to do this but still provide high-quality fuel. Google it for more information. The point is that over time a higher-quality fuel is better for your vehicle than a lower-quality one, although you pay more. This has nothing to do with octane rating. I would spend my money there before worrying too much about octane rating, but if the prospect of a little power loss is troublesome to you or, for you, inconsistent with a quality vehicle, then buy the higher octane. I notice no difference on the road in MPG or performance during normal driving. In my race car, where performance really matters, I would never buy less than 110.

amt7565 02-23-2013 01:01 PM

Thanks All. Useful info.
The X5 users manual recommends an AKI 91 and a minimum of 89 with an Ethanol rating E10.

I will Google to see what these actually corresponds to in terms of Brand.

quackbury 02-23-2013 01:22 PM

The phrase "top tier" has absolutely nothing to do with octane. Even the most off-price stations have the octane ratings posted on the pump.

"Top tier" is shorthand for "high quality name brand" like Exxon Mobil, Shell, etc. Unlike the bargain brands ("Joe's Great Gas"), top tier fuels tend to have a better additive package (detergents and anti-foaming agents). These additives cost money, and are largely responsible for the price difference between top tier and cut rate brands.

The brand is only part of the equation. You also want to buy fuel from quality, high volume stations. Joe's Great Gas may not sell much premium or mid-grade fuel, so their fuel may sit in their underground tanks longer, picking up moisture. Moisture in the fuel can wreak havoc with modern engines, and the higher the ethanol content, the easier it is for the fuel to pick up moisture.

From the Owner's Manual:

Super Premium Gasoline/AKI 91

This gasoline is highly recommended. However, you may also use gasoline with less
AKI. The minimum AKI Rating is:
> BMW X5: 87
> BMW X6: 89

If you use gasoline with this minimum AKI Rating, the engine may produce knocking sounds when starting at high outside temperatures. This has no affect on the engine life.
Do not use gasoline below the specified minimum quality, otherwise engine damage can result.

Use high-quality brands

Field experience has indicated significant differences in fuel quality: volatility, composition,
additives, etc., among gasolines offered for sale in the United States and Canada. Fuels containing up to and including 10% ethanol or other oxygenates with up to 2.8% oxygen by weight, that is, 15% MTBE or 3% methanol plus an equivalent amount of cosolvent, will not void the applicable warranties with respect to defects in materials or workmanship.

The use of poor-quality fuels may result in drivability, starting and stalling problems
especially under certain environmental conditions such as high ambient temperature and
high altitude. Should you encounter drivability problems which you suspect could be related to the fuel you are using, we recommend that you respond by switching to a recognized high-quality brand such as gasoline that is advertised as Top Tier
Detergent Gasoline.

Failure to comply with these recommendations may also result in unscheduled maintenance.

Penguin 02-23-2013 03:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by quackbury (Post 7399965)
Failure to comply with these recommendations may also result in unscheduled maintenance.

BMW-speak for "we won't pay for it, you will," as BMW pays only for scheduled maintenance and manufacturing defects.

NoI4plz 02-23-2013 03:59 PM

If you are buying a premium car, at a premium price, and you want the premium warranty that is included, I think you need premium fuel.... 91 and above is perfectly fine.

And always try to have proof of this, since BMW likes to nit pick to get out of paying (they always have an excuse) for warranty issues. So either get a receipt or use your CC or DB.


Good luck!

amt7565 02-23-2013 04:42 PM

Noted folks. Thanks for sharing some good info here. I think I will stick with AKI91 and avoid nondescript gas stations.

Kzang 02-23-2013 07:13 PM

BP 93 for me..

dcharnet 02-23-2013 07:27 PM

No warranty could be voided just for using 87. Ever.

jfabes 02-23-2013 07:37 PM

i always run 93 but its usually because it was a car that made more power with 93 (turbo, sc, tune, strung-out e46 m3 LOL, etc.). while i can't comment on the x5 specificially, i know that when we had our Q7 3.6Q, it got significantly worse mileage with 87. and not just around town, but on 4 different trips from houston to dallas (250 miles), travelling the same route.

NoI4plz 02-23-2013 07:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jfabes (Post 7400662)
i always run 93 but its usually because it was a car that made more power with 93 (turbo, sc, tune, strung-out e46 m3 LOL, etc.). while i can't comment on the x5 specificially, i know that when we had our Q7 3.6Q, it got significantly worse mileage with 87. and not just around town, but on 4 different trips from houston to dallas (250 miles), travelling the same route.

Drop in gas mileage is normal. Its the same if you excessively use premium with a motor designed around using 87 gas.

NoI4plz 02-23-2013 07:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dcharnet (Post 7400644)
No warranty could be voided just for using 87. Ever.

I see you either are naive, or unfamiliar with how BMW and other automakers like to pick up part warranty claims. Trust me, legally you may have a case, but in reality the headache of having to prove that to a stubborn SA or BMW rep is time spent that you do not need.

If someone else is pickin up the tab, I`m gonna maintain that vehicle the way the want it to be. I would forget about what I think caz it aint my name on that repair bill.

Once the warranty is over I go to town on a vehicle. Before the warranty is up, i maintain said conditions.

RockChips 02-23-2013 08:43 PM

Even using the best gas around, like Chevron or Shell is not good enough IMO.

Look into Techron, Redline SL-1 or Regane. Or BMW's fuel additive as recommended by the manual.

RockChips 02-23-2013 08:52 PM

Costco started advertising 5x EPA detergent levels at select locations

http://www.costco.com/clean-power-locations.html

dcharnet 02-23-2013 10:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NoI4plz (Post 7400671)
I see you either are naive, or unfamiliar with how BMW and other automakers like to pick up part warranty claims. Trust me, legally you may have a case, but in reality the headache of having to prove that to a stubborn SA or BMW rep is time spent that you do not need.

If someone else is pickin up the tab, I`m gonna maintain that vehicle the way the want it to be. I would forget about what I think caz it aint my name on that repair bill.

Once the warranty is over I go to town on a vehicle. Before the warranty is up, i maintain said conditions.

This kind of fuzzy thinking serves no one. I have read the manual. It expressly permits 87.There is no ambiguity, and no issue. I have sued BMW before and am neither naive nor "unfamiliar" with how this works.

DCC 02-24-2013 07:44 AM

The little sticker on the gas door flap says 89
But i am using premium from Exxon (93 in Texas)

quackbury 02-24-2013 09:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dcharnet (Post 7400895)
This kind of fuzzy thinking serves no one. I have read the manual. It expressly permits 87.There is no ambiguity, and no issue. I have sued BMW before and am neither naive nor "unfamiliar" with how this works.

You are correct. 87 will not void the warranty.

Going back to the OP's question, damage caused by "bad" gas will NOT be covered by the warranty. Hence the recommendation - here and in the manual - to use top tier brands.

I always get a receipt so I can build a paper trail of precisely where and when I purchased fuel, "just in case."

Sent from my HTC Inspire using BimmerApp

quackbury 02-24-2013 09:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RockChips (Post 7400742)
Even using the best gas around, like Chevron or Shell is not good enough IMO.

Look into Techron, Redline SL-1 or Regane. Or BMW's fuel additive as recommended by the manual.

FWIW for those of us with diesel, the manual specifically says NOT to use any additives.

For gas engines, I can find no mention of any recommended additive in my 2011 manual. Could you point us to that?

Sent from my HTC Inspire using BimmerApp

RockChips 02-24-2013 12:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by quackbury (Post 7401364)
FWIW for those of us with diesel, the manual specifically says NOT to use any additives.


Yes diesels are different. :thumbup:

RockChips 02-24-2013 12:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by quackbury (Post 7401364)
For gas engines, I can find no mention of any recommended additive in my 2011 manual. Could you point us to that?

Hmm, I've seen BMW fuel additive at the dealer. I thought I saw it in the manual too, but I guess not.

NoI4plz 02-24-2013 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dcharnet (Post 7400895)
This kind of fuzzy thinking serves no one. I have read the manual. It expressly permits 87.There is no ambiguity, and no issue. I have sued BMW before and am neither naive nor "unfamiliar" with how this works.

Thanks for the fuzzy thinking that gave me a good chuckle. If you read my comment, I stated the legal case is yes you can use different types of fuel. However when your dealing with a SA, and theres an issue with the fuel system, you want to minimize the random stuff that comes out of the SAs mouth. You dont want to give them the chance to spew random stuff about why the fuel system is your fault. Cause at the end of the day, yes you can sue, you can do all you want, but when it comes to whose got a stronger communication bridge with BMW, your not that person. And you can whip out your manual, your gas flap sticker, and they will probably have an excuse or a TSB or something.

Yes call me paranoid, but my paranoia exists to help me make warranty claims as easy and painless as possible for me.


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