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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 10-10-2011, 12:23 PM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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Mein Auto: 1997 540i
Stop! Engine Oil Pressure Light coming on..

The Stop! Engine Oil Pressure Light comes on whenever car comes to a fast stop, but the quickly goes off. Only seems to occur when coming to a relatively fast stop.

Something to be concerned about? What do I check?
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  #2  
Old 10-10-2011, 01:09 PM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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There are quite a few threads on this for your V8, try searching forum.
If I remember correctly, then it is usually a clogged oil filter for the V8.
(I6 is another story).

When was the oil filter last changed?
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  #3  
Old 10-10-2011, 03:36 PM
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This may help:
- Low Oil Pressure warning--possible cause
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  #4  
Old 10-11-2011, 08:17 AM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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Thanks. I have been reading about this on the other threads for it. The oil Filter was changed not too long ago. Less then 3500 miles. I'll look into that. Thanks for the replies!
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  #5  
Old 10-11-2011, 08:31 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Go and get a brand new oil filter (dealer or Mahle or Mann and nothing else).
Swap it and see what happens (no need to change oil for now).
Report back.
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  #6  
Old 10-11-2011, 08:41 AM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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That's a good idea. I changed the oil myself and being that it was my first time, I may have messed something up; it was a pretty expensive filter if I remember right.
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  #7  
Old 10-11-2011, 08:45 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Not really, a Mann or Mahle filter is about $6 for your V8.
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  #8  
Old 10-11-2011, 10:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usedbimmer View Post
it was a pretty expensive filter if I remember right.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cn90 View Post
a Mann or Mahle filter is about $6 for your V8.
I paid somewhere around $15 for an STP filter from the local auto parts stores ... and then, by mailorder, about $5 for Mann filters.

Which goes to show ... you never get what you pay for ... you just get what you get.

The OP will do well to read this:
- Cn90 How to change your oil; and Bluebee how NOT to change your oil!

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  #9  
Old 10-11-2011, 01:38 PM
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BigCo540i BigCo540i is offline
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Is the oil level correct?
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  #10  
Old 10-15-2011, 10:39 AM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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Oil level seems to be correct. I am inclined to do a new oil change. Last time I used a high mileage, non-synthetic at the recommendation of a Bimmer friend.. The local BMW repair guy said to go back to synthetic. Car will get better gas mileage.
It seems everyone has their own opinion. Unfortunately, this BMW Repair shop completely ripped me off on a radiator change.
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  #11  
Old 10-15-2011, 05:08 PM
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Using non-synthetic is wrong; I don't know where your friend got his information but he could use a chemistry lesson. I suspect you're a little low on oil; it takes 7.5 litres which is more than the I6.

http://www.bobistheoilguy.com/motor-oil-101/ and read Bluebee's "Oil Camps" thread.
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  #12  
Old 10-17-2011, 10:49 AM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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Yeah. I went with a high mileage oil instead of synthetic. I just ordered Mann Oil Filter and will replace it with synthetic next weekend.
Having added some oil, however, I think the problem has gone away.
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  #13  
Old 10-17-2011, 12:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usedbimmer View Post
Yeah. I went with a high mileage oil instead of synthetic.
I'm confused.

What do you mean by "a high mileage oil"?
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  #14  
Old 10-17-2011, 04:02 PM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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High Mileage Oil is for cars with high mileage...100K in above.. You can find it at any auto parts store or department. The friend who recommended this is the original owner of my car.
The BMW mechanic who replaced my radiator said it wouldn't do any harm, but recommended switching back to synthetic.
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  #15  
Old 10-17-2011, 11:54 PM
mrpumpk1n mrpumpk1n is offline
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my car used to have that issue, i switched to 20w50 castrol gtx high mileage, from what i read here (posts from edjack and franka), and changed my oil filter cap from suggestions from CN90, both together got rid of my problem, (changing the first or second alone did not solve anything). i guess my engines getting old and the clearance in the main bearings are becoming too large :-\ slowly. before me, the PO brutalized the car and im just trying my best to keep this car alive and bring it back to life. (this car has a lot of sentimental value to me), and at age 22, its pretty tough but quite possible
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  #16  
Old 10-18-2011, 12:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usedbimmer View Post
High Mileage Oil is for cars with high mileage...
OK. But what is 'high mileage oil"?

Looking it up ... I see the following:
- Valvoline High Mileage Oil FAQ
- Mobil1 High Mileage Oil FAQ

Now, I'm a reasonably well educated person who has reading comprehension skills that are at least average, and, well, um ... well, for the life of me, when I read the Valvoline page titled "High Mileage Oils", I sure didn't get a decent sense of what exactly that meant that was concrete (and not just marketing drivel).

Moving on to the Mobil1 explanation of high-mileage oil, I find a bit less drivel and a bit more substance (so it "helps protect seals & prolongs engine life", they say).

Hmmm... so does 'regular' oil. Probably olive oil would do the same, compared to, say, water as a lubricant.

At least the Mobil1 drivel does state that the "clean" high-mileage oil has "16% more cleaning additive".

I wonder what a 'seal conditioner' is, and why I'd want even more detergent in my oil (both meaning less oil in my oil) than plain old 'oil'?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrpumpk1n View Post
i guess my engines getting old and the clearance in the main bearings are becoming too large ... im just trying my best to keep this car alive and bring it back to life.
Let me get this straight.

The clearance in the main bearings is too large ... so ... you put in high mileage oil (which, apparently 'conditions seals' and contains "more detergent") ... which also means, by subtraction, that it contains less lubricant ... and that ... in and of itself ... somehow "brings it back to life"?

Hmmmmm..... clarification requested ...
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Last edited by bluebee; 10-18-2011 at 12:27 AM.
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  #17  
Old 10-18-2011, 11:59 PM
mrpumpk1n mrpumpk1n is offline
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bluebee, no it doesnt bring the car back to life, and is currently probably slowly killing the car. its like cancer treatment, all the chemo and radiation is bad for you, but itl get you through immediate death right? the clearance may be getting large so im using thicker oil to compensate. when starting the car, specially in cold mornings, yes there is a lack of lubrication for a few seconds to minutes, but its better than the engine lacking lubrication for hours after the car is warmed up right? my only way to save this car is to overhaul the engine from the looks of it. im just saving up money for till i can go ahead and do that.
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  #18  
Old 10-21-2011, 11:09 AM
usedbimmer usedbimmer is offline
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I think I'm just going to go back to the recommended Mobile 1 Synth oil.. Skip the high mileage stuff.
By the way, adding a little more oil solved the problem of the stop engine oil warning.
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  #19  
Old 10-21-2011, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usedbimmer View Post
I think I'm just going to go back to the recommended Mobile 1 Synth oil.. Skip the high mileage stuff.
By the way, adding a little more oil solved the problem of the stop engine oil warning.
Now you're talking. That's all I run in my v8.
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  #20  
Old 11-05-2011, 12:19 AM
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Clogged oil filter?? How often is the problem the actual engine components themselves?
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  #21  
Old 11-05-2011, 04:46 AM
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Mein Auto: '97 540iA
Mineral oil causing low oil pressure? Please...

Your oil level is LOW, add more and try again. If it was a bad sensor it'd it all the time, but since it only does it at hard acceleration (-g) it MOST DEF low on oil, add more regardless of what your dipstick says
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  #22  
Old 11-05-2011, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by usedbimmer View Post
The Stop! Engine Oil Pressure Light comes on

Something to be concerned about? What do I check?
You should not drive the car until you find the problem. Low oil pressure will ruin your engine.
You should remove the lower oil pan and check for a clogged OIL PUMP SUMP. You could have sludge or something else down there. I have found once a piece of rag (the engine was bought from salvage).
You could have some dirt floating around, in the oil pan which can cause intermittently oil pump sump to be obstructed.

The second possible cause could be electrical. I have seen this problem on the E38 which may apply to your E39 as well :
Follow the oil pressure switch/sensor wire for a insulation breakage. On the E38 the wire goes under the driver side front fender, where usually the insulation will break and cause intermittent signal which will cause the warning in the IC. When you are breaking the wire with broke insulation could touch the car's frame and cause this.
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  #23  
Old 08-11-2014, 08:16 PM
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Gentleman -

I have a 2003 530i, with about 185k miles. The car has been well taken care of, and runs exceptionally well. The car is being passed down to my 16yr old, and over the last couple of weeks I've been experiencing the Stop! Check Engine Oil Pressure alarm (with audible bong), and the red oil can light comes on. The alarm, and corresponding red oil light ONLY comes on when the car comes to a stop, and only after operating the car for 20-30 minutes. I immediately hit this forum where I have found several helpful solutions in the past to more minor issues. There seemed to be a consensus, at least among at least one of the forum's more respected contributors, that it could be the following:

1. Low oil level
2. Broken/damaged oil filter housing cap/tip
3. Faulty oil pressure sensor
4. Worn vanos seals

Here is what I have done:
1. Checked the oil level. It's at spec, and I have changed the oil twice to heavier weight varieties based on some feedback on this forum. Seemed like a cheap, easy test to see if it would adios the alarm. It hasn't.
2. I have replaced the oil filter housing cap despite the fact that the cap, and specifically the tip appeared to be undamaged, along with intact o-rings. Still getting red oil light, associated bong/Stop! Engine Oil Pressure warning
3. I replaced the oil pressure sensor with the oem part, purchased at dealership. Still getting warning, etc.
4. Read, and re-read the detailed instructions on the Beisan website about the vanos seal replacement repair. Incidentally, during my review I noticed in the instruction narrative that there were three pictures missing. I contacted Beisan inquiring about the missing pictures, and received a quick reply from the president of Beisan in which he indicated that he had modified the procedures slightly, but that the he didn't have the pictures for them. At any rate, I saw this as an opportunity to tap his knowledge, and asked if he was familiar with worn vanos seals causing a drop in oil pressure enough to trigger the alarm and associated warning. Here is his reply:

"I have heard of this oil pressure problem before but I haven't heard of a solution. I've been asked if this could be caused by the failed vanos seals. I wouldn't think so, but it's possible. I haven't had anyone replace the seals and get back to me with an answer."

I'm prepared to do the vanos repair, but I guess I am feeling uneasy about it being the cause. It's a pretty major repair, and I'm not terribly confident that I am qualified.

Lastly, I have an oil pressure mechanical gauge on its way to me now, and have ordered the correct (m12x1.5) adapter as well. The one I ordered has a hose that is long enough for me to essentially place the gauge on my windshield (affixed with packing tape). This should allow me to take the car out for a spin, hopefully get the car to trigger the warning and then check to see what the actual pressure is.

I will report back, but if anyone has any additional insight, I sure would welcome feedback on this issue.

Last edited by shcram; 08-11-2014 at 09:10 PM.
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  #24  
Old 08-12-2014, 07:38 AM
cn90 cn90 is offline
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Could be gunk in the OFH, when you replaced the P sensor, did you crank the engine for 2-3 sec to expel old gunk?

Also, oil grade could affect it. Some people solve this problem when using thicker oil such as 10W30 or 15W50.
You are in Nashville with warmer weather, so this may be something to consider.

Last edited by cn90; 08-12-2014 at 07:40 AM.
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  #25  
Old 08-12-2014, 08:51 AM
shcram shcram is offline
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No, I haven't tried that. When the pressure gauge kit arrives, and I remove the sensor, I will try that.

I have tried several different oil weights, and the problem still persists.

Can you give me any advice on how I should try and flush it? Should I rev the engine?

I will report back.

Thanks.

Last edited by shcram; 08-12-2014 at 09:34 AM.
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