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X3 F25 (2011 - current)
The latest X3 brings some added style and some new features to the BMW SUV family. Talk about the new F25 now!

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  #1  
Old 12-19-2013, 08:38 AM
erkbiz erkbiz is offline
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

The Situation: Cruising down the hiway a warning message appears telling me I need a quart of oil. I pull into a gas station run the check oil diagnostic it comes back telling me the oil level is fine, however, since the indicator shows the oil level is in the lower half of the graph I add the oil. The level noted on the graph does not move, OK, so one quart isn't enough to make the bar move.

What Happens Next: I take off down the hiway about a half hour later I get the same message telling me to add a quart of oil. Now, I'm getting concerned. I stop, run the diagnostic it comes back telling me the oil level is fine, still no movement on the graph. I sure as hell am not going to continue adding oil so I continue driving. Now, every so often on my drive the same message keeps appearing. I know if I were blowing out that much oil there would be some indication and I would be needing more than just one quart of oil at a time.

What to Do: Well, I am going to take the car to the dealer, but, at this point I don't know how much oil is in the engine and I don't know how the dealer will know either. I sure do miss the low tech dip stick.

ERK
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  #2  
Old 12-19-2013, 08:48 AM
guyver626 guyver626 is online now
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

Tell us what the dealer comes up with.

I really hate bmw for doing this. There is absolutely no positive from having them design this feature. There was nothing wrong with the dipstick to begin with!!! Post like this drive me nuts. It's basically a big waste of time for us as the customers to always have to bring the car back to the dealer. Normal people have lives and don't have the time to make unexpected visits to the dealer for something so simple! Overall they make great cars but these "features" really bring down the brand and value of the car. I want to drive the ultimate driving machine. Not the ultimate drive to the dealer machine for stupid useless crap.
Ok end rant!


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  #3  
Old 12-19-2013, 09:03 AM
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Drewsky Drewsky is offline
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Interestingly this popped up a month or so ago in my forum reading. It may have actually been on this forum!

The long and short of it is that the filter had some kind of issue that allowed a higher than expected flow rate of oil through it. At speed that allowed the oil pump to suck up oil faster than normal and have it up circulating in the engine (sitting atop head, etc), and thus setting off oil alarm. Soon as you return to idle, the oil has a chance to drop back down into the pan, and the oil level reads "normal".

Let us know what dealer says. If this is another funny filter situation, I may find myself going and purchasing an extra filter.

Last edited by Drewsky; 12-19-2013 at 09:05 AM.
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  #4  
Old 12-19-2013, 11:18 AM
The X Men The X Men is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erkbiz View Post
The Situation: Cruising down the hiway a warning message appears telling me I need a quart of oil. I pull into a gas station run the check oil diagnostic it comes back telling me the oil level is fine, however, since the indicator shows the oil level is in the lower half of the graph I add the oil. The level noted on the graph does not move, OK, so one quart isn't enough to make the bar move.

What Happens Next: I take off down the hiway about a half hour later I get the same message telling me to add a quart of oil. Now, I'm getting concerned. I stop, run the diagnostic it comes back telling me the oil level is fine, still no movement on the graph. I sure as hell am not going to continue adding oil so I continue driving. Now, every so often on my drive the same message keeps appearing. I know if I were blowing out that much oil there would be some indication and I would be needing more than just one quart of oil at a time.

What to Do: Well, I am going to take the car to the dealer, but, at this point I don't know how much oil is in the engine and I don't know how the dealer will know either. I sure do miss the low tech dip stick.

ERK
So what kind of oil did you bought from the gas station? If it does not meet BMW's oil requirement, I would ask the dealer to change the oil since in order for the dealer to measure how much oil is in your engine, they basically just drain it and then measure it.
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  #5  
Old 12-19-2013, 11:25 AM
RhoXS RhoXS is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guyver626 View Post
I really hate bmw for doing this. There is absolutely no positive from having them design this feature. There was nothing wrong with the dipstick to begin with!!!
I would much prefer a dipstick. Nevertheless, I suspect the dipstick was not removed because the level sensor is a better method for the end user. I would bet it is less expensive to manufacture the vehicle with a sensor penetrating the oil pan, some additional wiring harness conductors, and some software than it is to put in a mechanical dipstick, tube, and machined penetration into the engine block. I also think this gives BMW a very good method of denying warranty claims for very labor/parts intensive engine repairs if the problem was caused by a low oil level. I would be very surprised if the "computer" does not remember any uncorrected low oil level transgressions.

Last edited by RhoXS; 12-19-2013 at 11:28 AM.
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  #6  
Old 12-19-2013, 12:16 PM
guyver626 guyver626 is online now
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

If you feel the sensor is cheaper then to have a dipstick then the cost would be offset every time when a person had to go to the dealer and have them fix the issue wasting funds on the man power needed to correct the problem.
Also even there was a dipstick I'm sure BMW would still have sensors that log the data into the computer whenever there was a low oil warning


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  #7  
Old 12-19-2013, 12:20 PM
guyver626 guyver626 is online now
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

I just find it frustrating that BMW can ignore these easy basics that even low end car manufactures have. I'm only 33 but I miss the gold ol days when things were simpler lol.


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  #8  
Old 12-19-2013, 12:55 PM
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The oil sensor probably cost more than a dip stick. I believe there is a low oil switch as well that is separate from the oil level sensor. Oil contamination from people using the dip stick is the issue here. My guess is that BMW wanted to seal the engine as much as possible to prevent oil contamination, after all, the oil has to last 15000 miles. The added benefit would be the soccer moms no longer have to get their hands dirty
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  #9  
Old 12-19-2013, 01:31 PM
guyver626 guyver626 is online now
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

The newer models are 10k oil change. If BMW was so worried about oil contamination then they would not even allow you to do an oil change with the big oil filler cap. Most soccer moms wouldn't even know how to open the hood. Let alone check the oil. I know my wife doesn't or could care less. She wouldn't even care to check it on the computer screen lol.
I just wish we could get a good reason why there is no dipstick to justify the offset


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Last edited by guyver626; 12-19-2013 at 01:32 PM.
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  #10  
Old 12-19-2013, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guyver626 View Post
The newer models are 10k oil change. If BMW was so worried about oil contamination then they would not even allow you to do an oil change with the big oil filler cap. Most soccer moms wouldn't even know how to open the hood. Let alone check the oil. I know my wife doesn't or could care less. She wouldn't even care to check it on the computer screen lol.
I just wish we could get a good reason why there is no dipstick to justify the offset


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Here is another reason:

"Contrary to Internet rumors, the elimination of an inexpensive metal rod is not a cost-cutting measure, nor is it an environmental issue (word on the web said each check of a dipstick introduced ounces of polluting dirty oil into the ecosystem). "

http://www.autoblog.com/2010/04/22/t...n-dilatory-dr/
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  #11  
Old 12-19-2013, 04:18 PM
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Drewsky Drewsky is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The X Men View Post
Here is another reason:

"Contrary to Internet rumors, the elimination of an inexpensive metal rod is not a cost-cutting measure, nor is it an environmental issue (word on the web said each check of a dipstick introduced ounces of polluting dirty oil into the ecosystem). "

http://www.autoblog.com/2010/04/22/t...n-dilatory-dr/
I buy that reason! Even though I've always been told (I think I even read it in Roundel) that the elimination of dipstick was an emissions thing: one less port where untreated combustion gasses can escape.
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  #12  
Old 12-19-2013, 05:02 PM
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jman103099 jman103099 is offline
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Originally Posted by Drewsky View Post
I buy that reason! Even though I've always been told (I think I even read it in Roundel) that the elimination of dipstick was an emissions thing: one less port where untreated combustion gasses can escape.

Agreed.
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  #13  
Old 12-20-2013, 01:52 PM
guyver626 guyver626 is online now
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

Thanks for the explanation. But i still would prefer one! Lol


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  #14  
Old 12-22-2013, 07:26 PM
lib lib is offline
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A Vehicle With No Dipstick

Last people I know don't know how to properly check their oil levels even if they wanted to.

Now we get warnings that may or may not be trusted.. It's better than nothing.

Same for tire pressure. My wife's previous car (Audi) didn't have TPM and as such she would end up with <15psi in a tire and drive for days or weeks without knowing.


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  #15  
Old 12-23-2013, 05:52 AM
The X Men The X Men is online now
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Originally Posted by lib View Post
we get warnings that may or may not be trusted..
But you can say that for just about any warning or sensor in your car, which probably has hundreds of sensors.
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  #16  
Old 12-24-2013, 06:11 AM
erkbiz erkbiz is offline
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UPDATE: Vehicle With No Dipstick

Took my X3 to the dealer and here is what they did:

1. Ran onboard oil level application indicating that oil level in middle of OK area
2. Checked for fault code; No fault code found
3. Ran test plan stating oil was a quart low, added a quart (I don't know what is meant by "test plan")
4. Test drove vehicle. Oil level did not update
5. Drained oil and measured 8 qts (this is the original oil level in the car + the quart I added + the quart they added)
6. Replaced oil sensor and refilled oil (5.3qts)

A pilot's rule of thumb is to "trust your instruments" but in this case trusting the instruments was not the wisest thing to do. Maybe it would be better to state, "Trust your instruments but be aware that they too can, and do, fail".

ERK
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  #17  
Old 12-24-2013, 08:01 AM
The X Men The X Men is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erkbiz View Post
Took my X3 to the dealer and here is what they did:

1. Ran onboard oil level application indicating that oil level in middle of OK area
2. Checked for fault code; No fault code found
3. Ran test plan stating oil was a quart low, added a quart (I don't know what is meant by "test plan")
4. Test drove vehicle. Oil level did not update
5. Drained oil and measured 8 qts (this is the original oil level in the car + the quart I added + the quart they added)
6. Replaced oil sensor and refilled oil (5.3qts)

A pilot's rule of thumb is to "trust your instruments" but in this case trusting the instruments was not the wisest thing to do. Maybe it would be better to state, "Trust your instruments but be aware that they too can, and do, fail".

ERK
Again, any instrument can fail, the important thing is that it has a back up, and I believe that there is a separate low low oil level switch that will warn you if you get into the dangerous low level.
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  #18  
Old 12-24-2013, 02:59 PM
missedbass missedbass is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erkbiz View Post
Took my X3 to the dealer and here is what they did:

1. Ran onboard oil level application indicating that oil level in middle of OK area
2. Checked for fault code; No fault code found
3. Ran test plan stating oil was a quart low, added a quart (I don't know what is meant by "test plan")
4. Test drove vehicle. Oil level did not update
5. Drained oil and measured 8 qts (this is the original oil level in the car + the quart I added + the quart they added)
6. Replaced oil sensor and refilled oil (5.3qts)

A pilot's rule of thumb is to "trust your instruments" but in this case trusting the instruments was not the wisest thing to do. Maybe it would be better to state, "Trust your instruments but be aware that they too can, and do, fail".

ERK
my windshield washer resivoir holds 5.3 qts, my engine holds 7qts. I do miss the dipstick though, to me it is fail safe
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  #19  
Old 01-04-2014, 08:07 PM
bitcalc bitcalc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erkbiz View Post
Took my X3 to the dealer and here is what they did:

1. Ran onboard oil level application indicating that oil level in middle of OK area
2. Checked for fault code; No fault code found
3. Ran test plan stating oil was a quart low, added a quart (I don't know what is meant by "test plan")
4. Test drove vehicle. Oil level did not update
5. Drained oil and measured 8 qts (this is the original oil level in the car + the quart I added + the quart they added)
6. Replaced oil sensor and refilled oil (5.3qts)

A pilot's rule of thumb is to "trust your instruments" but in this case trusting the instruments was not the wisest thing to do. Maybe it would be better to state, "Trust your instruments but be aware that they too can, and do, fail".

ERK
Wish that enough dealers who have done this would press BMW to put the oil dipstick back. Removing a simple and fail-safe feature without any gain is a stupid idea.

Last edited by bitcalc; 01-04-2014 at 08:08 PM.
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