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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 10-02-2011, 12:11 PM
gradyj gradyj is offline
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How many quarts of Oil?

I have changed my engine oil before (always use Mobil 1 5w30) how many quarts? I have heard 7 OR 8 is fine. (various shops and people who do their own).
thanks.
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  #2  
Old 10-02-2011, 12:14 PM
njcardave njcardave is offline
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  #3  
Old 10-02-2011, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
how many quarts?
From the bestlinks ...
- BMW E39 fluid summary printout for your glovebox (1)

Quote:
- Engine oil (E39 1999 & later): 15W40 LL-01 mineral oil BMW PN: 07.51.0.017.868 (amazingly, only one SAE weight is specified! Don't be confused because Bentley page 020-11 lists only SAE 15W40 while page 020-9 confusingly lists only SAE 5W30 & SAE 15W40 but page 020-11 appears to be the specific listing to follow). Various dogmatic camps differ on 'opinions' (1) but there is only one BMW-approved list (1). [Volume: I6=6.9 quarts, V8=7.9 quarts]. Replacement Interval: The instrument cluster Service Interval Indicator (SII) will determine when necessary by lighting the yellow light and indicating "OIL SERVICE". On average, most seem to change oil & filter (Mann, Hengst, or Mahle only!) & 36mm 6-point socket oil-filter cap o-ring (91x4mm) & copper crush washer roughly thrice a year at about 4,500 miles; most replace the smaller lower oil-filter-post o-rings every five years or so (7x2.5mm). Keep a spare 17 mm drain bolt handy on the I6 as it's hollow and can break from over tightening (M12x1.5x18mm). Torque filter cap to 18 ft-lb, drain bolt to 21 ft-lb. Note: Mixing oil types (mineral vs synthetic) is permissible; but bear in mind "synthetic" is an advertising term and quite a few oils labeled as such are not PAOs or diesters (1). Best to use either the oil-pan gravity-drain method or the MityVac vacuum-extraction method (don't use the Motive vacuum extractor). Most replace the oil filter & oil-filter-cap o-ring on every oil change and the lower small o-rings on every other change. Keep a spare oil drain plug handy, especially in the I6 as the bolt is hollow and prone to breaking when over torqued.
- Engine oil (gas, E39 1997 & 1998): Synthetic 5W-30 LL-01 (aka long-life 2001) BMW PN: 07.51.0.017.866 (amazingly, only one SAE weight is specified! This is confusing because Bentley page 020-11 lists only SAE 5W30 while page 020-9 confusingly lists only SAE 5W30 & SAE 15W40 but the 020-11 appears to be the specific listing). Replacement Interval: The instrument cluster Service Interval Indicator (SII) will determine when necessary. Note: Mixing oil types (mineral vs synthetic) is permissible. On average, most seem to change oil & filter roughly thrice a year at about 4,500 miles.
- Engine oil (diesel): I can't find anything in the Bentleys; but the euro owners manual lists on page 152 "ACEA: A3/B3 or ACEA: A3/B4" specifications which all long-life-01 oils meet (according to that owners manual). Most people here say to use LL-04 approved oils (1). Replacement Interval: The instrument cluster Service Interval Indicator (SII) will determine when necessary.
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  #4  
Old 10-02-2011, 01:06 PM
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bmw_n00b13 bmw_n00b13 is offline
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I believe this site will tell you the precise amount of oil your car holds. I believe it is 6.5 litres, which is exactly what I drain and fill every time I've done an oil change. Convert into quarts, gaylords, gallons, and kegs at will.

NB: The site has a really, really anal antispam filter, so it probably won't work.
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  #5  
Old 10-02-2011, 07:46 PM
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QSilver7 QSilver7 is offline
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This information is in the owners manual...and it lists both quarts and liters:

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  #6  
Old 10-02-2011, 08:09 PM
gradyj gradyj is offline
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alright thanks guys. Mobil 1 5W30 is fine right?
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  #7  
Old 10-02-2011, 09:30 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
Mobil 1 5W30 is fine right?
You'll get three answers to that question (all equally valid but some are exclusive)

Answer 1: If it says LL-01 on the can, then it's fine (and it probably doesn't say that since only Mobil1 0W40 meets LL01 specifications); so it's not fine.

Answer 2: If the specs for Mobil 1 seems similar enough to LL01 to you, then it's fine.

Answer 3: If the API grade is SL or SM or better, then it's just fine.

For details on those three answers, see the following:
- Algorithms specific to BMW motor oil selection (1)

See also:
BMW approved motor oils (pdf) & tribal motor oil recommendations (1) (2) (3) & gravity oil change DIY (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) & vacuum extraction DIY (1) (2) (3) & drill pump DIY (1)
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  #8  
Old 10-02-2011, 09:46 PM
gradyj gradyj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
You'll get three answers to that question (all equally valid but some are exclusive)

Answer 1: If it says LL-01 on the can, then it's fine (and it probably doesn't say that since only Mobil1 0W40 meets LL01 specifications); so it's not fine.

Answer 2: If the specs for Mobil 1 seems similar enough to LL01 to you, then it's fine.

Answer 3: If the API grade is SL or SM or better, then it's just fine.

For details on those three answers, see the following:
- Algorithms specific to BMW motor oil selection (1)

See also:
BMW approved motor oils (pdf) & tribal motor oil recommendations (1) (2) (3) & gravity oil change DIY (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) & vacuum extraction DIY (1) (2) (3) & drill pump DIY (1)
alright, well let me ask in a more simple way. what oil do you use in your e39?
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  #9  
Old 10-02-2011, 09:53 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
alright, well let me ask in a more simple way. what oil do you use in your e39?
My answer is clearly all over the place in the links I referenced for you.

So is everyone elses' answer, clear as day (you do realize this has been asked ten thousand times, right?).

Did you read any of them before asking?
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  #10  
Old 10-02-2011, 10:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
alright thanks guys. Mobil 1 5W30 is fine right?
Not according to BMW. These are the currently approved oils by BMW North America:
http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Conte...ngineOils.aspx

The only easily obtainable ones are the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30 at the dealer. Mobil 1 Synthetic 0w-40 (available at most auto parts stores and larger retailers).
And Castrol Syntec 0w-30, which is available exclusively at AutoZone stores.

That said, I am currently using Mobil 1 5w-30...I normally only use BMW approved LL-01 oils, but had run out, and had a bunch of Mobil 1 handy. I religiously change my oil at 7500 mile intervals, which is twice as often as recommended, so I feel this rare transgression is okay... I will definitely be back to using Castrol Syntech or BMW factory oil next go around.
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  #11  
Old 10-03-2011, 12:51 AM
gradyj gradyj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540 M-Sport View Post
Not according to BMW. These are the currently approved oils by BMW North America:
http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Conte...ngineOils.aspx

The only easily obtainable ones are the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30 at the dealer. Mobil 1 Synthetic 0w-40 (available at most auto parts stores and larger retailers).
And Castrol Syntec 0w-30, which is available exclusively at AutoZone stores.

That said, I am currently using Mobil 1 5w-30...I normally only use BMW approved LL-01 oils, but had run out, and had a bunch of Mobil 1 handy. I religiously change my oil at 7500 mile intervals, which is twice as often as recommended, so I feel this rare transgression is okay... I will definitely be back to using Castrol Syntech or BMW factory oil next go around.
Thanks man. I will get on that asap.
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  #12  
Old 10-03-2011, 10:49 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
Thanks man. I will get on that asap.
I apologize.

After a few years of these 'what oil' threads, I should have realized, by now, that anyone who actually asks, is in the first category, almost by definition (since they believe in all things BMW - and they don't want to think for themselves - nor to take any risks - they just want the one-and-only 'right' answer handed to them).

So, to the OP, now that I know within good probability that you're in the first category, I can say, with certainty, YOU SHOULD NOT USE MOBIL1 SAE 5W-30 MOTOR OIL!

What were you thinking?

That stuff will RUIN YOUR ENGINE!

Use ONLY the oils listed specifically on the BMW listings provided above! Accept no substitutes!

I repeat. DO NOT use any MOBIL1 product other than the LL01-approved 0W40 oil! If you can't find this oil, go to the dealer and buy the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Again ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTES!

Your BMW machine will absolutely explode if you use any other oil!

If, perchance, you have already poured a drop of the Mobil 1 5W30 in there, DO NOT DRIVE THE VEHICLE!

Immediately, if not sooner, drain all the oil! Flush with copious amounts of BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Then refill with Mobil 1 0W40 LL01 approved oil.

BTW, I have a few extra bottles of Techron, Seafoam, coolant conditioners, and Marvel Mystery Oil I'd love to sell you at hugely inflated prices. Kindly PM me for details.

Last edited by bluebee; 10-03-2011 at 11:19 AM.
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  #13  
Old 10-03-2011, 11:26 AM
air_cooled air_cooled is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
.............. YOU SHOULD NOT USE MOBIL1 SAE 5W-30 MOTOR OIL!

What were you thinking?

That stuff will RUIN YOUR ENGINE!

Use ONLY the oils listed specifically on the BMW listings provided above! Accept no substitutes!

I repeat. DO NOT use any MOBIL1 product other than the LL01-approved 0W40 oil! If you can't find this oil, go to the dealer and buy the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Again ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTES!

Your BMW machine will absolutely explode if you use any other oil!

If, perchance, you have already poured a drop of the Mobil 1 5W30 in there, DO NOT DRIVE THE VEHICLE!

Immediately, if not sooner, drain all the oil! Flush with copious amounts of BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Then refill with Mobil 1 0W40 LL01 approved oil.

BTW, I have a few extra bottles of Techron, Seafoam, coolant conditioners, and Marvel Mystery Oil I'd love to sell you at hugely inflated prices. Kindly PM me for details.
Off the medication?
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  #14  
Old 10-03-2011, 11:28 AM
gradyj gradyj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
I apologize.

After a few years of these 'what oil' threads, I should have realized, by now, that anyone who actually asks, is in the first category, almost by definition (since they believe in all things BMW - and they don't want to think for themselves - nor to take any risks - they just want the one-and-only 'right' answer handed to them).

So, to the OP, now that I know within good probability that you're in the first category, I can say, with certainty, YOU SHOULD NOT USE MOBIL1 SAE 5W-30 MOTOR OIL!

What were you thinking?

That stuff will RUIN YOUR ENGINE!

Use ONLY the oils listed specifically on the BMW listings provided above! Accept no substitutes!

I repeat. DO NOT use any MOBIL1 product other than the LL01-approved 0W40 oil! If you can't find this oil, go to the dealer and buy the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Again ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTES!

Your BMW machine will absolutely explode if you use any other oil!

If, perchance, you have already poured a drop of the Mobil 1 5W30 in there, DO NOT DRIVE THE VEHICLE!

Immediately, if not sooner, drain all the oil! Flush with copious amounts of BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30. Then refill with Mobil 1 0W40 LL01 approved oil.

BTW, I have a few extra bottles of Techron, Seafoam, coolant conditioners, and Marvel Mystery Oil I'd love to sell you at hugely inflated prices. Kindly PM me for details.
Its all good, I should have done more research myself before asking and being lazy. I just know this is the place to come if I want a HONEST answer that has been discovered by trial and error - not from what a manual says. Thanks again.
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  #15  
Old 10-03-2011, 11:47 AM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gradyj View Post
I just know this is the place to come if I want a HONEST answer that has been discovered by trial and error
That, you received! And always will.

In addition, I'm glad you took my jocular answer in stride.

You did help 'me' understand, BTW ... because I have been analyzing the what-oil threads for at least a year ... and from the way each OP handles the answers, I learn a lot.

At first, like all the others, I 'argued' my point in good faith, until I belatedly learned that intelligent argument was futile due to the religious nature of the what-oil threads. No matter the argument, the 'logic' of religion only works on those who are inclined to believe it.

Then, I tried the what-I-thought-was-ingenious psychologist's approach of 'how do you feel about your oil'; but, much to my surprise, most OPs, almost to a person, refused to state what category they were in. I realize, sheepishly, it's most likely they don't even understand my question (since they obviously haven't been analyzing all the what-oil threads for the past year or two).

However, the fact dawned on me, as the predictable answers came in, one by one, culminating with yours ... that the OP's almost invariably embraced the first of the three types of responses - and not the latter two.

That this situation is almost universal, suggests to me, (where I am always looking for underlying truths), that anyone who asks the question, is likely in the first category and not the other two.

After assimilating that new-to-me information, I hope to have a ready-made better-tuned response for the inevitable subsequent 'what oil' thread that will pop up, no doubt, in the near future ... so help me God.

That response will go something like this:
- OP: What oil?
- ANSWER: If you ask that, then only use BMW-approved oils. Period.

Let's see how well that works.

Stay tuned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by air_cooled View Post
Off the medication?
There goes another perfectly good cup of coffee!

Last edited by bluebee; 10-03-2011 at 11:56 AM.
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  #16  
Old 10-03-2011, 03:32 PM
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QSilver7 QSilver7 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebee View Post
...After assimilating ... I hope to have a ready-made better-tuned response for the inevitable subsequent 'what oil' thread that will pop up, no doubt, in the near future ... so help me God.

That response will go something like this:
- OP: What oil?
- ANSWER: If you ask that, then only use BMW-approved oils. Period.

Let's see how well that works.

Stay tuned....


Bluebee...I think you see the light?

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2006 E53 X5 4.4i (Sterling Gray) 12/05 mfg date <<~>> 97 740iL (Arctic Silver) 3/97 mfg date
(SOLD)
99 540iT (Orient Blue) <<~>> 95 525IT (Alpine White)
91 735iL (Schwarz Black) <<~>> 85 325e (Bronzit)

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  #17  
Old 10-03-2011, 03:47 PM
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Jason5driver Jason5driver is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 540 M-Sport View Post
Not according to BMW. These are the currently approved oils by BMW North America:
http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Conte...ngineOils.aspx

The only easily obtainable ones are the BMW High Performance Synthetic 5w-30 at the dealer. Mobil 1 Synthetic 0w-40 (available at most auto parts stores and larger retailers).
And Castrol Syntec 0w-30, which is available exclusively at AutoZone stores.

That said, I am currently using Mobil 1 5w-30...I normally only use BMW approved LL-01 oils, but had run out, and had a bunch of Mobil 1 handy. I religiously change my oil at 7500 mile intervals, which is twice as often as recommended, so I feel this rare transgression is okay... I will definitely be back to using Castrol Syntech or BMW factory oil next go around.
I wouldn't use BMW factory oil in my lawn mower...
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Old 10-03-2011, 04:05 PM
thecushion thecushion is offline
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Originally Posted by Jason5driver View Post
I wouldn't use BMW factory oil in my lawn mower...
What kind of oil do you use ?
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  #19  
Old 10-03-2011, 04:42 PM
ProRail ProRail is offline
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Originally Posted by Jason5driver View Post
I wouldn't use BMW factory oil in my lawn mower...
Me neither. It would be a HUGE waste of money (unless it was a BMW lawnmower.)
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Old 10-03-2011, 04:51 PM
thecushion thecushion is offline
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Me neither. It would be a HUGE waste of money (unless it was a BMW lawnmower.)
What kind of oil do you use??
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  #21  
Old 10-03-2011, 08:27 PM
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Originally Posted by thecushion View Post
What kind of oil do you use ?

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  #22  
Old 10-04-2011, 06:47 AM
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bmw_n00b13 bmw_n00b13 is offline
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I use my BMW oil in lawnmowers….but it's used. And it's not my lawnmower. And I change my oil ridiculously often when I'm on schedule.
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  #23  
Old 10-04-2011, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by bmw_n00b13 View Post
I use my BMW oil in lawnmowers….but it's used. And it's not my lawnmower. And I change my oil ridiculously often when I'm on schedule.
Great!
I also like using grass oil for the lawn mower...
Keeps it green, and I can pay more for it while the lobbyist get rich and charge more, which also makes my lawn mower run not as efficiently/poorly...
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