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  #1  
Old 11-17-2003, 11:17 AM
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Oil suggestions?

I've decided to tackle my first oil change and I'm wondering which oil to use. I've checked the archives and I've narrowed it down to the Mobil 1 0w40 or the BMW Castrol. I'm leaning towards the Mobil 1, but I'm not sure.

I've got a 3 year old 330i with 37xxx miles on the clock. I've done oil changes at the dealer every 7500 miles and I've never needed to top off the oil, except since my last oil change. The last 7000 or so miles have mostly consisted of short distance driving and one track event, so I think I might be better served by a heavier weight oil. Any suggestions?
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  #2  
Old 11-17-2003, 12:06 PM
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If you wanna stay with oils meeting BMW specs then your choice is limited in US. There is only one more oil (other than the 2 you mentioned)that meets the specs - Castrol Syntec 0W-30, version made in Germany but it is hard to find and distributed only by AutoZone.

Mobil1 0W-40 is not really that much thicker than BMW 5W-30 HP synthetic or Syntec 0W-30. M1 0W-40 viscosity @ 212F (operating range for most engines) is 14.3cSt, BMW HP is around 11.9cSt and Syntec is 12.1.
FYI here is the range for different weights:

Weight__________cSt 100C_________SUS 212F

20wt oil_________5.6 - 9.3__________44.6 - 56.8
30wt oil_________9.3 - 12.5_________56.8 - 68.3
40wt oil_________12.5 - 16.3________68.3 - 83.11
50wt oil_________16.3 - 21.9________83.11 - 106.6
60wt oil_________21.9 - 26.1________106.6 - 125.0

There is not much info how well M1 0W-40 works in BMW engines but it showed to thin out to 30wt in some engines. Thinning out of grade is not a good thing since it can lead to sludge type deposits. Also you have to remember that bigger viscosity spread requires more Viscosity Improvers and it's not a good thing either. Both Castrol oils stay in grade.
I'm not trying to say that Mobil1 oil is bad, I just think that this particular grade is nothing special. I wouldn't pay $1.50 per quart more for this oil. You may give it a try and check how well it really does by doing Used Oil Analysis at Blackstone Labs.

All of the oils meeting ACEA A3/B3 and BMW LongLife specs will work fine at 7,500 miles intervals. If you don't care about complying with BMW specs then there is one more oil I wouldn't hesitate to recommend and it's Red Line, any 30 or 40 weight.
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  #3  
Old 11-17-2003, 01:30 PM
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I too have been trying to find the magical german castrol 0w-30 elixer but have given up here in southern ca as the autozones never seem to have it. The oil I choose to put in is the BMW 5w-30 (It's Castro Softec TXT which is not the same castrol 5w-30 at walmart or other stores) while not the best it does seem to work well for me. However, some people have seen sludge on their oil caps and so far my car has been immune to it.
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  #4  
Old 11-17-2003, 01:47 PM
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I plan on using Castrol Syntec 5 - 50.

Not sure that this is the made in Germany stuff but on the bottle it says that it exceeds manufacturer specs for BMW and Mercedes.

My dealer dosent sell BMW oil.
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  #5  
Old 11-17-2003, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LmtdSlip
Not sure that this is the made in Germany stuff but on the bottle it says that it exceeds manufacturer specs for BMW and Mercedes.
All the German automakers have oil standards that get updated periodically and/or specified for different engine families, so it could be approved under old ones but not current ones. I need to post it one of these days, but I've compiled a list of oils sold in the US that meet the 4 primary BMW oil specs currently in use:

LongLife 98
LongLife 01
LongLife 01 in a different spec for Valvetronic
Special Oil for some S54/S62 applications

Most commonly available synthetics in the 0w-30 to 10w40 grades meet LL98. LL01 is specified for non-M and non-Valvetronic engines after 09/01, and are generally 0w-30 or 0w-40 (often called 'European Car Formula' in the US) with a couple of 5w-30s in the mix.

As for that M oil, there is only one other than the dealer spec 10w-60 Castrol, and is a product not sold in the US.

Now, all this said, using RedLine, AmsOil or some other favorite most likely isn't going to do anything. They've most likely just not been submitted for testing.
  #6  
Old 11-17-2003, 04:51 PM
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Kaz,
I posted the list of BMW approved oils in another thread but I'll post it here again. I don't know if this is the same one that you have, I got it recently. Nice fellow that sent it to me says it's a copy from BMW Technical Information System as used by the dealers worldwide.

BMW TIS -2003:

5.0 "Longlife-01" for all engines, except:
M43/CNG, S54, S62/E39 (till 02/2000)

BMW Quality Longlife-01 0W-40 (supposedly just showed up at US dealerships)
BMW Quality Longlife-01 5W-30

ACEA A3/B3

Agip Formula LL B 01 0W-30
BP Visco 7000 0W-40
BP Visco 7000 Special 0W-30
Castrol Formula SLX 0W-30
Castrol Syntec 0W-30 (new formula in US, imported from Germany)
Castrol Super Racing 0W-40
Castrol TXT Softec LL01 5W-30
Havoline Synthetic BM 0W-30
Mobil 1 0W-40
Motul Specific LL-01 0W-30

6.0 "Longlife-01 FE" for last generation engines only: N40, N42, N62, N73

BMW Quality Longlife-01 FE 0W-30
Castrol SLX 01 FE 0W-30

7.0 "Longlife-98" for all engines except:
M43/CNG, M54 (from 09/2001), N40, N42, S54, N62, N73, S62/E39 (till 02/2000)

BMW Super Power Plus 5W-30 is substituted by
BMW Quality longlife-01 5W-30
BMW Super Power Oil 5W-40

ACEA A3/B3

List of around 160 oil names and grades, some of them are:

76 Pure Synthetic Motor Oil 5W-40
Castrol Formula RS Power and Protection 0W-40
Castrol Formula RS Road and Track 5W-40
Castrol GTX7 Dynatec 5W-40
Castrol Performance 5W-40
Castrol Syntec 5W-40
Castrol TXT Softec 5W-40
Castrol Softec LL98 5W-30
Castrol Softec Plus 5W-30
Chevron Supreme Synthetic 5W-40
Mobil1 5W-30 (think it is not the same 5W-30 SS or Tri-Syn sold in N.A)
Mobil1 5W-40
Mobil1 Rally Formula 5W-30 and 5W-40
Mobil1 Turbo Diesel 0W-40
Mobil Super S 5W-40
Mobil Synt S 5W-40
Quaker State Full Synthetic European Formula 5W-40
Valvoline Durablend MXL 5W-40
Valvoline SynPower 5W-30 and 5W-40
Valvoline SynPower MXL 0W-30
Valvoline SynPro 5W-30 and 5W-40

This list doesn't have a special oils list.
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  #7  
Old 11-17-2003, 05:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LmtdSlip
I plan on using Castrol Syntec 5 - 50.

Not sure that this is the made in Germany stuff but on the bottle it says that it exceeds manufacturer specs for BMW and Mercedes.

My dealer dosent sell BMW oil.
I don't think M54 can stomach 50 weight...
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  #8  
Old 11-17-2003, 05:38 PM
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LmtdSlip LmtdSlip is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Crazy
I don't think M54 can stomach 50 weight...
Thats what the owners manual calls for for my climate.
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  #9  
Old 11-17-2003, 05:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LmtdSlip
Thats what the owners manual calls for for my climate.
What car is it? I thought that you have E46
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  #10  
Old 11-17-2003, 05:49 PM
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nope.

E36
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  #11  
Old 11-17-2003, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LmtdSlip
nope.

E36
I believe most E36s fall under the older Special Oils spec which doesn't mandate synthetic.
  #12  
Old 11-17-2003, 06:44 PM
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The Roadstergal The Roadstergal is offline
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Why is 0W-x "European car formula"?
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  #13  
Old 11-17-2003, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Roadstergal
Why is 0W-x "European car formula"?
It's simply a marketing gimmick since many cars in Europe come with 0W-X oils from factory and 0W-40 seems like a preffered weight in Europe lately.
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  #14  
Old 11-17-2003, 08:41 PM
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Here's the list I compiled. This is out of last November's BMWTIS CD, so it's a bit outdated.

BMW Specified fluids

These fluids are those specified by name or specifaction for their appropriate applications. Other equivalent fluids may perform satisfactorily, but are not specifically named by BMWAG. I've narrowed the list to those products that appear to be readily available in the US. Products with grades or styles specified imply that only those matching are specified. i.e. an approved motor oil in a 5w-30 is not approved in 5w-40 unless it is listed.

Engine Oils:

* BMW LongLife 98 Specification for all engines EXCEPT: M54 after 09/01, S54, N62, S62/E39 before 02/00
o 76 Pure Synthetic 5w-40
o Castrol Syntec 5w-40
o Chevron Supreme Synthetic 5w-40
o Texaco Havoline Synthetic 5w-40
o Mobil 1 5w-30
o Motul 6100 Synergie 5w-40
o Motul 8100 Synergie X-cess 5w-40
o Pennzoil Synthetic European Formula 5w-40
o Pentosin Pentosynth 5w-40
o Quaker State Full Synthetic European Formula 5w-40
o Valvoline SynPower Full Synthetic 5w-40
o Valvoline SynPower MXL 0w-30

* BMW LongLife 01 Specification for all engines EXCEPT: S54, S62/E39 before 02/00
o Castrol Syntec 0w-30
o Mobil 1 0w-40
o Motul 6100 LL-01 0w-30

For the S54 and S62/E39 before 02/00, BMW only specifies the following:

o Castrol TWS Motorsport 10w-60
+ Castrol Formula RS Racing Syntec 10w-60 is an older name for the above product. Castrol markets a new product under this name which is NOT an approved product.
o Veedol Synthetic Z 10w-60
--------------------
The Veedol product doesn't appear to be available in the US, but I kept it in this list since it's the only alternate listed.
  #15  
Old 11-17-2003, 08:55 PM
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Veedol sells Castrol oil. I don't know if it is just rebottled or if they blend it themselves but it's the same as Castrol oils.
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  #16  
Old 11-18-2003, 09:49 AM
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LmtdSlip LmtdSlip is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaz
I believe most E36s fall under the older Special Oils spec which doesn't mandate synthetic.
What is "special" about the oils? Are there non synth oils that I could use considering the fill cycles that the computer is recommending?

I will probably run the 5-50 Castrol Syntec anyway. Couldnt hurt considering the extended fill periods I am getting out of the computer. Although, I think I will start changing at 7500 from now on.
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  #17  
Old 11-18-2003, 10:49 AM
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Kaz Kaz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LmtdSlip
What is "special" about the oils? Are there non synth oils that I could use considering the fill cycles that the computer is recommending?

I will probably run the 5-50 Castrol Syntec anyway. Couldnt hurt considering the extended fill periods I am getting out of the computer. Although, I think I will start changing at 7500 from now on.
I've never looked into the pre-LL98 oils, as they don't apply to my car. As indicated, the newer specs superceed any old ones, though if your application calls for a 50 weight oil, it looks like you're SOL as there is no such thing in a LL98 or newer.
  #18  
Old 06-17-2004, 06:15 PM
dkotanto dkotanto is offline
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Hi,

Has anyone heard any comments or tried the new Amsoil 5W-40 European Engine Oil yet? It meets BMW LL-01/98 requirements:

http://www.amsoil.com/products/afl.htm


Thanks!
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  #19  
Old 06-24-2004, 06:01 PM
euroPower euroPower is offline
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I thought we choose oil based on the climate..

anyway, what oil grade should I use in s.california??

it's so hot right now..
  #20  
Old 06-24-2004, 06:23 PM
mallards mallards is offline
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mobil 1 5w-30 w/ stock filter every 7500 miles ...

ben
  #21  
Old 06-25-2004, 08:14 PM
Iniquity Iniquity is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mallards
mobil 1 5w-30 w/ stock filter every 7500 miles ...

ben
Mobil1 5w-30 meets the BMW viscosity requirements, however it doesn't meet the BMW performance requirements.... you should be using either BMW 5w-30, Mobil1 0w-40, or that magic German Castrol 0w-30 that no one can find..
 

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