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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 07-24-2007, 12:41 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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90k mineral oil to royal purple or stick with mineral?

@ 90k previous owners used mineral oil...can i switch to royal purple or bmw synthetic? can i use oem filter if i switch? if not can i use mobil 1 5w 30 from walmart vs bmw's preferred oil?
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  #2  
Old 07-24-2007, 12:51 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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The rule is : if you broke it in on mineral oil, or have run it on mineral for a long period of time then you shouldn't switch to syn because youre probably going to get leaks.
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  #3  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:02 PM
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MatWiz MatWiz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCo540i View Post
The rule is : if you broke it in on mineral oil, or have run it on mineral for a long period of time then you shouldn't switch to syn because youre probably going to get leaks.
I am not doubting you, but I never heard of such a thing. Do you have a link to a reference about this somewhere? Again, not doubting you, just want to educate myself more about it from a reputable source.
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  #4  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:06 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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i'm sure someone here can find a link to something, but i'm just going by what my mechanic told me, sure you can do it but it's not the best idea.
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  #5  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:09 PM
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Ehh i moved my g/f's Cavalier to synthetic and haven't gotten any leaks. BMW's should run on synthetic forever. Make the switch, you might get a leak or two, but once the seals condition it should slow. If not, replace whatever leaks!
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  #6  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:10 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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according to couple of bmw mechanics from the dealerships...they did not go to synthetic until 2000...they used mineral oil up until then....they also recommend not going to synthetic due to leaks that could occur....

i just wanted to see people's experiences that have gone against bmw and went to royal purple and have not had any issues. if they are then i'll just stick with mobil 1/castrol 1 conventional oil.
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  #7  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:34 PM
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bimmerd00d bimmerd00d is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gpupp View Post
according to couple of bmw mechanics from the dealerships...they did not go to synthetic until 2000...they used mineral oil up until then....they also recommend not going to synthetic due to leaks that could occur....

i just wanted to see people's experiences that have gone against bmw and went to royal purple and have not had any issues. if they are then i'll just stick with mobil 1/castrol 1 conventional oil.
I guess my 540 had synthetic when i bought it....maybe. It has 2 leaks, front and rear main seals Could be a result of swiitching from dino to synthetic. I dont care though, i'll run synthetic in everything til the day i die. It's not more expensive
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1998 540i 6-spd. - Sold!
2000 528iA sport - Mom's ride, 308k!!!! and still drives like new
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2001 Volvo C70 Coupe T5 - The wife's car, 170k. Needs a timing belt soon
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  #8  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
they did not go to synthetic until 2000...they used mineral oil up until then....
incorrect, i have a 99 528 and it says right under the hood to use BMW synthetic only, and leaks may or may not occur. it depends on the condition of the seals and how often the previous owner changed the oil and if the grade of oil was up to BMW's specs
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  #9  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:39 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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I was lucky when I bought mine, all of the service records showed BMW SYN. I also am a believer in the Man made stuff. Mobile 1 is my choice.
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  #10  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:42 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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i bought this from an old lady and she did not keep any records since bmw kept it for her...when i went to try to get service records they will not disclose the information due to privacy owner act....unbelievable..all i wanted to know was what they did to this vehicle...
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  #11  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:45 PM
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The same thing happened to me about the Privacy thing, so I had the guy at BMW change the records to show my name since I was clearly the owner(title). So the problem was solved he didn't break any rules because the previous owners name was taken off the records. Give it a try.
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  #12  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:51 PM
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not this topic again

typically a seal that is already compromised will have leaks when switching to
synth. if it's been run with dino till 90k i'd stick with it and change every 3k.
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  #13  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:56 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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yes, i know kish

figure be good to get people's experience here and there.
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  #14  
Old 07-24-2007, 01:57 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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bigcos...i changed the info through bmwna...so it did show up as my name as the new owner...guy said they can't disclose previous owner info...crock of crap...not like i want her credit card number or phone number...she is 70 years old for godsake!
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  #15  
Old 07-24-2007, 02:01 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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Yeah I know...the only thing that is her personal info is her address and if he changes that to yours your good. Try it at another dealer, I was lucky because I drove about 2 hours to the dealer and the first thing he told me was that he couldnt disclose the owners info, but then another guy suggested that he change the address in the system and it worked. Keep trying hopefully you'll get it
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  #16  
Old 07-24-2007, 02:03 PM
gpupp gpupp is offline
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good idea bigcos...def do that...for anybody info...DO NOT USE west springfield, ma bmw...they are by far the worse....
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  #17  
Old 07-24-2007, 06:25 PM
devmc2 devmc2 is offline
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When or how many miles should you change the transmission fluid and filters.
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  #18  
Old 07-25-2007, 07:20 AM
franka franka is offline
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I went from many miles on dino oil to synthetic. Had a minor leak or two that stopped in short order.

Gf's Mercedes had to have the head gasket replaced after switch to syn. But her model of Mercedes had a known head gasket problem.
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Old 07-25-2007, 12:56 PM
jsayreshepherd jsayreshepherd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by franka View Post
I went from many miles on dino oil to synthetic. Had a minor leak or two that stopped in short order.

Gf's Mercedes had to have the head gasket replaced after switch to syn. But her model of Mercedes had a known head gasket problem.
What model Benz? I had a W124 that had a slight leak that got worse when I went from dino to synthetic (granted, I waited until the car had 175k to switch, which was probably far too late).
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Old 07-25-2007, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsayreshepherd View Post
What model Benz? I had a W124 that had a slight leak that got worse when I went from dino to synthetic (granted, I waited until the car had 175k to switch, which was probably far too late).

A 320 E I think... Is there such a model?
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  #21  
Old 05-05-2008, 02:26 PM
E39music E39music is offline
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I just noticed the same thing

Sorry to bring up an old tread. I just noticed today that my car has slow engine oil leaking - I believe it's upper oil pan on driver side and rear main seal. The car had 108Kmiles when I bought it in March. I inspected the car - it was very dry, absolutely no leak. I did my oil change using GC 0W-30 full synthetic as many recommended right when I bought the car.

This could be because the previous owner used dyno oil for a long time. What you guys recommend me to do (it's about 2kmiles on the new oil - including a long trip to LA)? Should I switch to something thinker right away? Or should I just wait and see if it will get better?

There is nothing dripping to the garage floor yet - but I can see the seepage (slow leak) clearly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by franka View Post
I went from many miles on dino oil to synthetic. Had a minor leak or two that stopped in short order.

Gf's Mercedes had to have the head gasket replaced after switch to syn. But her model of Mercedes had a known head gasket problem.
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  #22  
Old 05-05-2008, 03:56 PM
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Fulltone74 Fulltone74 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gpupp View Post
i bought this from an old lady and she did not keep any records since bmw kept it for her...when i went to try to get service records they will not disclose the information due to privacy owner act....unbelievable..all i wanted to know was what they did to this vehicle...
Actually, they can verbally tell you what was done, but not hand you the service records print out, since that shows some of the owner personal info.

I just did the same with an m5 I was looking at buying. Dealer only read off his computer monitor what was done on the car, but wouldn't give me a hardcopy.
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  #23  
Old 05-06-2008, 07:30 AM
franka franka is offline
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In some recent reading I learned that conventional multi weight oils do swell O rings and such whereas synthetic allows them to shrink back to their original size. Not perfectly or completely but significantly.

Basically synthetic will not affect the size of a new O ring but conventional will expand it.

I read this is a highly respected journal in an article on oils.
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Last edited by franka; 05-06-2008 at 07:37 AM.
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  #24  
Old 05-06-2008, 09:04 AM
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Brian McKinney Brian McKinney is offline
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split the difference and go with a blend....
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  #25  
Old 05-06-2008, 11:44 AM
JoeFromPA JoeFromPA is offline
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To expand a little on this, synthetic oil molecules tend to be quite small and homogenuous which leads to better flow properties...but it also means that they tend to slip into very small spaces better. Good in the engine, bad near an old not-so-great seal. Sometimes, an engine will leak from switching to synthetic due to the above post's properties and the fact that they don't have "large" dino molecules blocking the oil's exit.

There are a variety of good solutions to this. As suggested by Brian, switch to a synthetic blend. Use a high mileage oil. Sometimes even using a higher viscosity synthetic (i.e. a 5w40 vs. 5w30 or even a 5w50 if weather permits). The greater viscosity (which is essentially resistance to flow at operating temperature) will reduce, minimize, or eliminate leaks that would occur under a lower viscosity oil.

There is nothing wrong with experimenting. Furthermore, if you are pretty easy on your oil (read: you don't track the car) then Dino is not exactly a risky proposition. Synthetic mainly helps in the extremes....extreme use, extreme hot, extreme cold, extremely long oil change interval, etc.

Joe
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