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  #1  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:22 PM
Robert Robert is offline
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Changing oil - Dead Horse?

On various boards there has been extensive discussion re: waiting for the car's computer to say "when" for the oil changes (up 15k miles), or to change oil at one's own whim or other recommended schedule. Some argue that the reason BMW has such long intervals to be "cheap" and that eventually the cars will suffer.

I do not see this logic. Most BMW dealerships have their greatest profit margin on pre-owned vehicles many of which carry 100k warranties. Why then would BMW shoot itself in the foot so to speak. My guess is that the cars have been tested, studies done, etc. that show it is not necessary to bleed these cars every 3k for dogma's sake.

For those of you out there changing your own oil - "show me the data" - ( a phrase thrown around at every medical school ). I don't want expert opinion or some drivel from MOBIL ONE that changing their oil every fifteen minutes will allow one to drive indefinitely.

If this has been put to rest; flame me and point out the archive location - I did the search!
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  #2  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:32 PM
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I have not yet changed my oil so I can not "show you the data" doc but what I can tell you is the following......

You have a good point about preowned and need to keep the running til 100k w/out problem. Why would BMW shoot themselves in the foot

I believe that the it is likely that the oil could perform up to 15K. But I have my doubts about the filters ability to do the same. Plus I would also highly doubt that the oil would not be a state of significant break down at that mileage interval.

Third and probably most important. I have a good friend who has worked on BMWs for ~30 years. He has 2 personal cars with well over 200K on them. When I approached him about finally buying one he gave me several pointers. But one of his top was to please change the oil at 5k intervals. He actually changes his closer to 3k but his driving characteristics (in his opinion and depending on the season) call for it. He is so emphatic about it that he has offered to change mine in the intervals when not covered for free, I just have to buy the filter and oil.

Plus don't you think if you plan on keeping it for a longer time that oil is a very cheap insurance policy
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  #3  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:36 PM
in_d_haus in_d_haus is offline
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Robert,
This is the best BMW BBS on the web so while others may disagree I don't think anyone will flame you for questioning the factory recommended 15K oil change.

At the same time many (most?) of us DO change our oil much more frequently than 15K. I change mine at 5K myself. I have always changed my oil on every car I own sooner than the recommended intervals. It is just good cheap insurance. I say this speaking as an FAA licensed aircraft mechanic and former professional race car builder.

My '90 525, which currently has 205K miles gets oil changes every 1500 miles, this is due to the high milage of the car. It currently tests tight (compression) and doesn't burn a drop of oil.

I know this has been talked on this board a considerable amount. I doubt we could say it has been put to rest or that it can ever be. It is merely personal preference. The factory recommends 15K, those of us (call us paranoid) that choose to do it sooner are just using what we consider "Preventative medicine"

Thanks for the post,
Doug
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  #4  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by in_d_haus
Robert,
This is the best BMW BBS on the web so while others may disagree I don't think anyone will flame you for questioning the factory recommended 15K oil change.

At the same time many (most?) of us DO change our oil much more frequently than 15K. I change mine at 5K myself. I have always changed my oil on every car I own sooner than the recommended intervals. It is just good cheap insurance. I say this speaking as an FAA licensed aircraft mechanic and former professional race car builder.

My '90 525, which currently has 205K miles gets oil changes every 1500 miles, this is due to the high milage of the car. It currently tests tight (compression) and doesn't burn a drop of oil.

I know this has been talked on this board a considerable amount. I doubt we could say it has been put to rest or that it can ever be. It is merely personal preference. The factory recommends 15K, those of us (call us paranoid) that choose to do it sooner are just using what we consider "Preventative medicine"

Thanks for the post,
Doug
Haus you said it better than I did but I was coming from the same direction.

I had assumed you where a computer head like Rip but boy was I off target What kind of cars did you build? Never built em but have been around some fellas who had dirt track modifieds.
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  #5  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:49 PM
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Dead Horses

I appreciate your points. Many rituals are based on empiric data. There may never be a clear answer given variations in build quality, driving style, and environment. I'm all for going out into the garage and getting a little dirty, I just hate feeling like a bigger freak (about BMW's) than I already am. My family gave me only BMW gifts this holiday season (two shirts, hat, gloves, clock -love the clock)

Lets just say I start putting some synthetic in my baby (AW 02 330i SP 5spd -3500 miles), do I need to do anything with the computer? Should I just show up at my dealer at 15k for my complementary coffee, donut, and oil change?
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  #6  
Old 02-17-2002, 07:54 PM
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Re: Dead Horses

Quote:
Originally posted by Robert
I appreciate your points. Many rituals are based on empiric data. There may never be a clear answer given variations in build quality, driving style, and environment. I'm all for going out into the garage and getting a little dirty, I just hate feeling like a bigger freak (about BMW's) than I already am. My family gave me only BMW gifts this holiday season (two shirts, hat, gloves, clock -love the clock)

Lets just say I start putting some synthetic in my baby (AW 02 330i SP 5spd -3500 miles), do I need to do anything with the computer? Should I just show up at my dealer at 15k for my complementary coffee, donut, and oil change?
Leave the computer alone. Don't reset it until the "called for " service is completed.

Which clock?
And I'd stay away from the coffee unless you like decaf, they don't trust their techs when on too much caffeine especially during those test drives
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  #7  
Old 02-17-2002, 08:03 PM
Robert Robert is offline
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clock - heavy desk clock. Looks like the speedometer. When asked the time I just say the mph. Ha Ha.

Oil suggestions? special tricks or tools other than the filter wrench?
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  #8  
Old 02-17-2002, 08:41 PM
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it's your car, do what you feel it's right. there is no "data" for you, it's just that most of us change ours at short intervals for "peace of mind". it really doesn't cost that much to do if you can find a good independent BMW shop or of course if you DIY. I think oil and oil filter changes are so easy that everybody should do them themselves, but that's just me...

im sure the engine would last more than 100k miles with oil changes every 15k miles, and i am really not interested in keeping my car for that long. but I still change it every 3-5k miles just so that i feel better when I redline my engine. I also change it before driving schools.

--Andrew
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  #9  
Old 02-17-2002, 10:30 PM
in_d_haus in_d_haus is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by PM 325xiT

I had assumed you where a computer head like Rip but boy was I off target What kind of cars did you build? Never built em but have been around some fellas who had dirt track modifieds.
PM,
No you are correct, I'm a software project manager. In a past life, pre-computer geekdom, I was an A&P mechanic (I am a private pilot too) and worked for a shop building race cars and boats.

We pretty much built anything people paid for. But it genreally centered around Drag cars and boats. We also built some wild custom stuff for people with more money than a person has a right to have. My first N2O install was on a 327 in a '62 Vette.

Built an insane 460 powered Ford stepside truck with Gumbo Monster Mudder Tires....wayyy too much power for a sky high, short wheelbase truck. And untill those tires heated up (Bias ply) it was very "interesting to drive. Damn thing would change lanes all by itself.

Built a blown 454 drag boat and some alcohol funnys. On the mellow side we did stuff like tune 12 cyl Jags and a few other exotics.

My boss (then #7 in the nation in super gas) had a piston mounted on a plaque over the door. It was melted from an Alcohol funny motor that ate itself. On the plaque were the words: "Speed costs money, how fast do you want to go?"

When someone walked into the shop he'd point to the plaque and smile.....

L8tr,
Doug
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  #10  
Old 02-18-2002, 12:41 AM
Imola Ed Imola Ed is offline
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Getting back to the topic at hand I myself have always wondered why the 15000 mile thing. It used to be 7500. It seems to me that if I was a big car company and wanted to avoid waranty shenanigans, I'd ask that cars have the oil changed more often than they need to, simply to cover my posterior.

But, on the other hand, if I was a car company offering free service for the first 24 months, that might work against that theory. In that case, I'd try to space the intervals out as far as possible.

So, I guess in the end, I'm confused.
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  #11  
Old 02-18-2002, 12:01 PM
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I have always used synthetic oil and changed it every 7500 miles. In my "old" cars, when I sold them after driving them 60,000 miles, you could take off the oil cap and the engine and valvetrain was absolutely clean (look in there with a small flashlight). The camshafts didn't even show a slight groove!

That was enough proof for me that the oil was working, and the engine enjoyed 7500 intervals.

I split BMW's FREE service, and do it myself every 7000 or so...
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  #12  
Old 02-19-2002, 08:49 AM
LeucX3 LeucX3 is offline
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I'm waiting for 15k for the first change, then 7500 after that. As much as I'd like to keep cars until i drive them into the ground, there's always something new 4-5 years down the road that catches my eye. Oh well...
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  #13  
Old 02-19-2002, 10:27 AM
bmw325 bmw325 is offline
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Robert-

Changing the oil is even easier than you think on your BMW.
The oil filter is located on top right next to the engine-- you just unscrew the cap wit the 32mm hex molded into it. Replace the paper filter. If you get an oil extractor you can do the whole job in about 20 minutes and don't even need to lift the car-- you'll barely make a mess too. You'll be out 20 minutes of time and aout $40 (with Mobil1 synthetic), but you'll have peace of mind. And one thing that I think we can all agree on is that changing oil sooner is not BAD for your car.
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  #14  
Old 02-19-2002, 12:35 PM
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Oil extractor?

What is an oil extractor? I think I need one.
Thanks
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  #15  
Old 02-19-2002, 01:34 PM
pod13 pod13 is offline
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I am pretty sure the optomistic oil change intervals BMW suggests are motivated more by meeting some Environmental conservation agencies push to reduce the harzardous wastes and pollution oil represents, rather than being cheap about free oil changes.

However, I'll sleep better knowing the oil is changed every 5000.
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  #16  
Old 02-21-2002, 01:36 PM
bmw325 bmw325 is offline
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Robert-

an oil extractor is a vacuum pump (hand operated) with a tube that you insert into the dispstick hole. You give the extractor a few pumps, it creates a vacuum and the oil starts flowing in a container. You just sit there and watch (and change the filter while you're waiting). THen just take the oil to a garage for proper disposal.

You can buy one from www.griotsgarage.com.
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  #17  
Old 02-21-2002, 07:56 PM
DrRobert DrRobert is offline
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Thanks for that, robg!

Actually, I did a Google search for oil extractors the other day and found what appears to be the same one that Griot's carries for cheaper, so I ordered one from them:

http://www.mytoolstore.com/astro/asthan11.html#7815

My car just hit 7500 miles and I want to give it its first oil change. I'm very excited about being able to do it without getting under the car. A few days ago I thought I'd be shopping for jack stands.

Regards,
Robert
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  #18  
Old 02-22-2002, 06:50 AM
Robert Robert is offline
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how many robs can post on a single thread?
Robert
DrRobert
robg
Thanks for the posts. The insight helps.
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  #19  
Old 02-22-2002, 02:26 PM
bmw325 bmw325 is offline
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Great- happy that you found one for cheaper. I think all of the Robs on this thread will appreciate the ease and convenience of it.
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