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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
The E9X is the 4th evolution of the BMW 3 series including a highly tuned twin turbo 335i variant pushing out 300hp and 300 ft. lbs. of torque. BMW continues to show that it sets the bar for true driving performance! -- View the E9X Wiki

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Old 05-27-2011, 08:51 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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How do you check your oil without a dipstick?

I'm still in the break-in period (so far only 400 miles on the clock) so I'm wondering if it's recommended to change the oil after the break-in is completed. I know we used to do that years ago.

Also, since there's no dipstick, how do you tell if your oil is low? Is there an area on the iDrive where you can access your oil level? Not having a dipstick makes me a little nervous about what's going on in the engine.

So, the question is, did you change your oil after the break-in period? And how do you monitor your oil level?
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Old 05-27-2011, 09:14 PM
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Some people change their oil after break in (I did after ~2,500 miles). Some don't.

There must be a way to check the oil level on I-drive if I can do it on my steering stalk.

gl
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:10 PM
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Zeichen311 Zeichen311 is online now
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Owner's manual, owner's manual, owner's manual ... it's in there.

Maybe the forum feels easier, maybe you'd rather not bother, maybe it's any one of a dozen reasons we've heard before...I understand. But in all seriousness, you owe it to yourself to read the manual, cover-to-cover, at least once. These are phenomenally complex, feature-laden cars and if you really want to take full advantage of all this technology you paid for, start at the source.

To check the oil level, press the iDrive Menu key, select Vehicle Info then Vehicle status. Scroll to the oil can icon and click. The engine has to be running and the car needs to have been driven enough to warm the oil before it will show a measurement. You can also check it using the BC control stalk: Turn the lever wheel up or down repeatedly until OIL appears in the display, then press the BC button. Same test conditions apply.

And I'm really not trying to be snarky about the manual. The thing is, although we will happily answer questions, I promise you: There is more stuff in there than you may even think to ask about!
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:17 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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Zeichen -

Thanks for the info. I have read the manual, but there was so much to read that I obviously didn't retain it all. I was just wondering today what that little button on the cruise control stalk was that you could flip up or down. Now I know, thanks to your reply. I agree that the manual is the best source of into (since sometimes everything one reads on here isn't totally accurate). But it is handy to have the help of other owners for a quick answer. Point taken.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:17 PM
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bayoucity bayoucity is offline
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What ! You don't have a dip stick? This is shocking.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:19 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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bayoucity -

You think that's shocking? I just learned last night that Humphrey Bogart's son and I were born on the same day, the same year.


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Old 05-27-2011, 10:33 PM
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Zeichen311 Zeichen311 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbroadway View Post
I have read the manual, but there was so much to read that I obviously didn't retain it all.
Good for you! Definitely go back and revisit it from time to time, as you become familiar with the car. There's way too much information to retain it all in one go--it gets much easier when you're going back to fill in the blanks on the features you use most.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:34 PM
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Carraway Carraway is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bayoucity View Post
What ! You don't have a dip stick? This is shocking.
Bah! Luddites and plebeians monitor oil by viewing marks on a piece of metal. Modern, sophisticated people, as Zeichen311 said, "...press the iDrive Menu key, select Vehicle Info then Vehicle status. Scroll to the oil can icon and click. The engine has to be running and the car needs to have been driven enough to warm the oil before it will show a measurement. You can also check it using the BC control stalk: Turn the lever wheel up or down repeatedly until OIL appears in the display, then press the BC button. Same test conditions apply."

Much easier.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:39 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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That's great. No dipstick but two alternate methods for checking. I love technology. It's amazing they can do so much with just ones and zeros.
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carraway View Post
Bah! Luddites and plebeians monitor oil by viewing marks on a piece of metal. Modern, sophisticated people, ....
That's just what we tell the new guys, so they can walk before they run. True modern sophisticates merely press the voice command button and say, "Vehicle status."
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Old 05-27-2011, 10:44 PM
mbroadway mbroadway is offline
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Zeichen -

I didn't see Azurite Black metallic as a color choice when I was at the dealership. Is that a special order color?
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Old 05-28-2011, 03:25 AM
missypunkin missypunkin is offline
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I am definitely old school. Currently I have close to 10,000 miles. I changed the oil & oil filter at 1000 and 7500 miles.
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Old 05-28-2011, 04:05 AM
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MrBones MrBones is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by missypunkin View Post
I am definitely old school. Currently I have close to 10,000 miles. I changed the oil & oil filter at 1000 and 7500 miles.
I did as well. If you bought (not leased) your car and plan to keep it for the long haul, it's probably worth it to pay for a few extra oil changes.
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Old 05-28-2011, 04:19 AM
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbroadway View Post
Zeichen -

I didn't see Azurite Black metallic as a color choice when I was at the dealership. Is that a special order color?
Yes indeed.

Oh, as for that first oil change: 7500mi for me. I went 'round and 'round on whether to do a break-in change at 1200-ish like the M cars, and had plenty of time to mull it over--it was on the boat at that mileage. In the end I decided it wasn't worth the bother...hadn't done it on my last one either and that was still purring at over 200k.
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Old 05-28-2011, 08:27 AM
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:54 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carraway View Post

Bah! Luddites and plebeians monitor oil by viewing marks on a piece of metal. Modern, sophisticated people, as Zeichen311 said, "...press the iDrive Menu key, select Vehicle Info then Vehicle status. Scroll to the oil can icon and click. The engine has to be running and the car needs to have been driven enough to warm the oil before it will show a measurement. You can also check it using the BC control stalk: Turn the lever wheel up or down repeatedly until OIL appears in the display, then press the BC button. Same test conditions apply."
Wait....is there a voice command for that?
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Old 05-28-2011, 02:09 PM
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pointandgo pointandgo is offline
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My three years of experience without a dip stick was uneventful and I was always dutifully "notified" if I was a litre low. I've stopped worrying about it and just enjoy driving the car now. I keep one of these in the trunk...velcro attachment, includes glove (available from your dealer):

If I need to change the oil on my new E90, I'm sure someone will tell me so...and when, otherwise life's too short to worry about motor oil so much!
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:56 AM
Mace14 Mace14 is offline
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Just in case it's not clear to the OP oil changes are not covered under the free maintenance program unless one is called for by the car's condition based service monitor. Except for the M3, the system will not call for a change until about 15,000 miles. (The M3 will call for an initial change at 1,200 miles). Any additional oil changes will have to be paid out of pocket and, with the price of synthetic, it isn't cheap. Not advocating one way or the other, just mentioning it so the OP doesn't get surprised.
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:51 AM
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Saintor Saintor is offline
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Quote:
The engine has to be running and the car needs to have been driven enough to warm the oil before it will show a measurement.
You have to drive a few miles before you can have a reading. That's part of the problem.
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Old 05-29-2011, 11:45 AM
Mace14 Mace14 is offline
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You have to drive a few miles before you can have a reading. That's part of the problem.
And how is that supposed to be a problem? I swear I wouldn't be surprised if a similar important "issue" wasn't debated the same way when electric starters became popular and they dropped the hand crank option.

(Old fart: I can tell the compression of every cylinder and the condition of the main bearings when I hand crank...now there's no way to adequately monitor the condition of my engine with these new fangled i-lectric whatchamacallsits!!! What are those dumb engineers thinking!!! Just another way to "decontent" our cars and save a few pennies!!!)

Unless someone sneaks into your garage in the middle of the night and steals all of your precious synthetic oil you would have received plenty of warning during the last drive that the oil was at a dangerous level. It's not like it'll just evaporate overnight without you knowing. Besides, how many people whip out the dip stick before every drive? Also, if you're changing your own oil you should also have a pretty good clue as to how many quarts of oil are in the engine...right? Where's the problem again?
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  #22  
Old 05-29-2011, 11:49 AM
RBinDC RBinDC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mace14 View Post
Besides, how many people whip out the dip stick before every drive? Also, if you're changing your own oil you should also have a pretty good clue as to how many quarts of oil are in the engine...right? Where's the problem again?
Good point. When I had my Lexus I would check the oil about every 3 months. I never had to add oil between changes.
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Old 05-29-2011, 11:57 AM
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Even "dip stickers" are never satisfied. Endless questions about the car being level, etc. Get this from a Mercedes forum (there are many more like this):

I've got a question for the gurus here. I'm well aware of the differences of checking the oil with synthetic vs. conventional. With the synthetic oil, you wait 6-8 hrs to let it all drain back in the pan to get an accurate reading. With conventional oil, you check the oil level with the car on level ground, engine at operating temp, and wait approx. 2 mins after shutdown before checking. So, how are the dipsticks in the OM617 built to read the oil level? If the manuals which were written before synthetics were approved say wait 2 mins, does that mean it takes 2 mins for the conventional oil to drain back into the pan, or if it doesn't take 2 mins for all the conventional oil to return to the pan, is the dipstick calibrated to read when all the oil hasn't returned back?

We have one diesel running conventional and one running synthetic, and I follow the guidelines I learned for checking each one's oil level. I'd just like to know how they were calibrated, and learn a little bit about the drain characteristics of conventional oil.


More sleep being lost over how to check oil level.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:59 PM
mujjuman mujjuman is offline
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Haha I've checked my oil using the dipstick plenty of times. I did a test, checked with the engine just turned off, check after waiting 2 mins, 30 mins, 2 hours.... and checking when engine is cold.

Each time I got the same measurement. I tried this on 2 diff cars.
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Old 09-02-2013, 08:40 PM
driveMYway driveMYway is offline
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No marks on oil dipstick

where is the max and the min on this type of oil dipstick. Just bought this 323i and the yellow oil light came on.
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