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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 01-30-2005, 12:16 PM
vadimv vadimv is offline
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Post break in oil change

Hi, I tried searching on this topic but didn't get any clear answers. I just got a 2005 325i and during delivery I asked the dealer about the break in period, which I knew about the specific of (not to exceed 110mph and 4500 rpm for first 1250 miles) from reading these forums. He denied the 325i having one and how that applies only to M cars of the 3 series and they actually require an early oil chance. Which of course is total BS since the manual states the opposite in black and white. I plan on breaking in the car per bmw's instructions.

So my question is this, do I need a post break in oil change, which from my experience I'd say yes. However, the manual and the service insert say only to service the car when the computer says an oil change is needed. The computer calculates that value based on the stress the car is placed under. At this point the computer thinks the next maintenance is in the neighborhood of 15k miles and not 1250 (post break in period). So, what do I do, get the oil change after 1250 miles or just break it in and wait for scheduled maintenance. If I do decide to do the oil change soon, will bmw cover that under their maintenance?
Thanks for the help.
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  #2  
Old 01-30-2005, 01:19 PM
sapphire sapphire is offline
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We changed oil at 6000 miles for our 325i at our own expense at the dealership. The dealer didn't offer to do it under the maintenance and we didn't bother asking the dealer too!
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  #3  
Old 01-30-2005, 01:41 PM
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JonathanIT JonathanIT is offline
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There have been lots and lots of discussions on this subject, and as your searches probably told you, there is no one philosphy that everyone agrees to. I think it all boils down to personal preference, and it seems most who opt to change the oil early after break in just do it for "peace of mind" or because it just makes them feel better. This applies to general oil changes throughout the life of the car as well. There are basically two camps of thought: some people are just not comfortable with the long (15,000 mi.) BMW recommended interval, and other people think it is just a mindset and a waste of time/money to do it more often.

BMW will not cover the cost of oil changes more frequent than the recommended interval, as determined by the Service Indicator on your dashboard. If not less than a certain mileage (this varies by dealer I think, I have heard up to 150), they will not provide an oil change or service. The one exception is if you are well below the interval and it has been more than one calendar year; they will honor annual oil changes for low mileage cars.

As my car is very low mileage (one year, 3800 miles) I will get it serviced annually. I have my first annual appointment set for Feb. 9. Thankfully, I don't have to make the decision for an early oil change! But if I start to drive my car more often, I am a "peace of mind" kind of person and will probably find a good independent shop to do oil changes at about 7,500 miles in between dealer appointments.

--J.
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  #4  
Old 01-30-2005, 04:27 PM
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Fast Bob Fast Bob is offline
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At your current mileage, you should at least change the filter....by now, all the small particles left over from the various machining & assembly operations have worked their way down to the filter, and should be disposed of. Changing the oil early will *never* hurt anything (except maybe your wallet).

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  #5  
Old 01-30-2005, 04:40 PM
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guitarman guitarman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast Bob
At your current mileage, you should at least change the filter....by now, all the small particles left over from the various machining & assembly operations have worked their way down to the filter, and should be disposed of. Changing the oil early will *never* hurt anything (except maybe your wallet).

Regards,
Bob
I'm not so sure that changing the oil early won't hurt anything. I also own a Honda and the owner's manual is very explicit about not changing the oil before 7500 miles. It is reported that Honda uses a special factory fill oil that helps with break in. My friend took his Honda to the dealership with only 3500 miles and they refused to change his oil.
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  #6  
Old 01-30-2005, 04:50 PM
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I changed mine as soon as I got it back from Euro-delivery. That was 1750 miles. I found a good independent shop nearby, and their price was was about 40% less than the dealer price while still using genuine BMW oil and filter. I plan on doing it every 7500 miles from here on out, and feel better that I did it because I may have gotten rid of any break-in grit in the engine. Do what you want, but I think a post break-in change and then every 7500 miles for life will be the best you can do for it.

~Jon
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  #7  
Old 01-30-2005, 05:37 PM
dougbenjamin dougbenjamin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JAWJr
I changed mine as soon as I got it back from Euro-delivery. That was 1750 miles. I found a good independent shop nearby, and their price was was about 40% less than the dealer price while still using genuine BMW oil and filter. I plan on doing it every 7500 miles from here on out, and feel better that I did it because I may have gotten rid of any break-in grit in the engine. Do what you want, but I think a post break-in change and then every 7500 miles for life will be the best you can do for it.

~Jon
vadimv- I think I agree with Jon. As also noted above, this issue has had a good deal of discussion which I read carefully. I think it comes down to this: if you are raising the question and you plan to keep your car beyond 100k miles, you need to put you concerns to rest. Change oil/filter between 1500 and 2000 miles following break-in, every 7,500 thereafter and enjoy the dealer paying for roughly half the changes for the first 4 years. Done. Stop worrying. Cheap insurance. I personally decided to use Mobil 1 and will be supplying the dealer with oil even when its their turn, I really choose to eliminate ALL my worries—its just a few extra bucks and worth it to me. Now go out and enjoy that new bimmer!
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  #8  
Old 01-30-2005, 06:12 PM
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e36M3r e36M3r is offline
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I don't think it is total BS, I think he is tellin the truth no?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vadimv
He denied the 325i having one and how that applies only to M cars of the 3 series and they actually require an early oil chance. Which of course is total BS
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  #9  
Old 01-30-2005, 08:14 PM
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operknockity operknockity is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonathanIT
There have been lots and lots of discussions on this subject, and as your searches probably told you, there is no one philosphy that everyone agrees to. I think it all boils down to personal preference, and it seems most who opt to change the oil early after break in just do it for "peace of mind" or because it just makes them feel better. This applies to general oil changes throughout the life of the car as well. There are basically two camps of thought: some people are just not comfortable with the long (15,000 mi.) BMW recommended interval, and other people think it is just a mindset and a waste of time/money to do it more often.

BMW will not cover the cost of oil changes more frequent than the recommended interval, as determined by the Service Indicator on your dashboard. If not less than a certain mileage (this varies by dealer I think, I have heard up to 150), they will not provide an oil change or service. The one exception is if you are well below the interval and it has been more than one calendar year; they will honor annual oil changes for low mileage cars.

As my car is very low mileage (one year, 3800 miles) I will get it serviced annually. I have my first annual appointment set for Feb. 9. Thankfully, I don't have to make the decision for an early oil change! But if I start to drive my car more often, I am a "peace of mind" kind of person and will probably find a good independent shop to do oil changes at about 7,500 miles in between dealer appointments.

--J.
Very nice explanation
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  #10  
Old 01-30-2005, 08:20 PM
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operknockity operknockity is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guitarman
I'm not so sure that changing the oil early won't hurt anything. I also own a Honda and the owner's manual is very explicit about not changing the oil before 7500 miles. It is reported that Honda uses a special factory fill oil that helps with break in. My friend took his Honda to the dealership with only 3500 miles and they refused to change his oil.
AFAIK, BMW does not use any special break-in oil in non-Ms, nor do they say they do, so changing it early should not be a problem. For the Ms, they may or may not actually use special oil during the break-in, but I think in this case, the machining tolerances of the engine may be smaller than the non-M engines, which could result in more metal shavings in the oil (which would be caught by the filter), so doing a post break-in oil/filter change is warranted, special break-in oil or not.

As others have said, even if not forbidden but not necessarily recommended by BMW, if it gives you peace of mind then the additional small cost of a post-break-in or mid-interval oil/filter change is probably worth it. And as others have also said, the only way to be really sure is to do an oil analysis to see when the oil really needs to be changed.
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  #11  
Old 01-30-2005, 10:42 PM
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JonathanIT JonathanIT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by operknockity
Very nice explanation
Why, thank you! Bimmerfest boards are so educational and have taught me very well! (but I have SOooo much more to learn)

--J.
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