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Keeping it surreal
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There are varying opinions on Seafoam....most of the experienced mechanics and engine builders don`t believe in it. The rationale is pretty simple: If you observe "sane" oil change frequencies, you really don`t need anything else, except maybe a bottle of Techron once a year or so.
 

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Ich bin ein Bimmerer
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I did it once on my 75k mile 330i. No crazy smoke, no notable improvement. It might be "good" to add to the oil system and fuel system for a periodic (50k mile) detergent cycle just prior to an oil change and if you can burn a bunch of fuel and refill. Not sure I see an advantage to the suction part, unless the car has seen many 15k mile oil changes and/or has used a bunch of dino oil and been run hard.
 

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There are varying opinions on Seafoam....most of the experienced mechanics and engine builders don`t believe in it. The rationale is pretty simple: If you observe "sane" oil change frequencies, you really don`t need anything else, except maybe a bottle of Techron once a year or so.
What would happen if i put a bottle of Techron in, and then filled up with a tank of Chevron? :p
 

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Freedom isn't free!!
2018 Glacier Silver 340i M Sport
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What would happen if i put a bottle of Techron in, and then filled up with a tank of Chevron? :p
Nothing special or out of the ordinary. I just did that about two weeks ago.
 

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Keeping it surreal
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I guess that would be the Bimmer equivalent of washing AND flossing your teeth.... :p:D
Or, wearing a jockstrap on the *outside* of your pants.... :)
 

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Keeping it surreal
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Well, there IS an Old Mechanic's Trick of adding ATF to the oil and running on idle for 10 minutes prior to an oil change, as a way of dissolving sludge and degunking an engine....
Yep....if you`re gonna do *anything*, this ^^^^^^^^^^ is the way to go....
 

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Well, there IS an Old Mechanic's Trick of adding ATF to the oil and running on idle for 10 minutes prior to an oil change, as a way of dissolving sludge and degunking an engine....
Send a message to Mythbusters about that trick... if I see it on Mythbusters and they back the claim that ATF oil in engine oil dissolves sludge and degunks an engine, then I will reluctantly believe it, maybe. It's gotta be on TV first lol.
 

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Keeping it surreal
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Send a message to Mythbusters about that trick... if I see it on Mythbusters and they back the claim that ATF oil in engine oil dissolves sludge and degunks an engine, then I will reluctantly believe it, maybe. It's gotta be on TV first lol.
It`s a time-honored old-school trick that`s been used for 50 years....(because *it works*)
 

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It`s a time-honored old-school trick that`s been used for 50 years....(because *it works*)
But its a 50 year old trick based on ATF and engine oil of that time period. Let's see what the effects are on a 15 year old car with 150k-200k miles and modern engine oil, and lets see what adding a quart or two of modern ATF oil does to it, and if the effects are comparable to what might have happened with oil and ATF from the past if they can get ahold of some.
 

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Properly chastised re: Xi
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Well, there IS an Old Mechanic's Trick of adding ATF to the oil and running on idle for 10 minutes prior to an oil change, as a way of dissolving sludge and degunking an engine....
I've never heard of this. Interesting. What "old mechanic's knowledge" on the effect to seals and gaskets?
 

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Keeping it surreal
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But its a 50 year old trick based on ATF and engine oil of that time period. Let's see what the effects are on a 15 year old car with 150k-200k miles and modern engine oil, and lets see what adding a quart or two of modern ATF oil does to it, and if the effects are comparable to what might have happened with oil and ATF from the past if they can get ahold of some.
Your paranoia runs FAR too deep....the current crop of Dexron III has been designed to be backwards-compatible. It`s interaction with "modern oil" is a moot point, as you`re only leaving it in the engine for 20 minutes or so (at almost zero load), then draining and replacing with fresh oil.
I suggest you bag the conjecture, and leave the "reality-based reviews" to people who have actually performed this procedure....
 

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Your paranoia runs FAR too deep....the current crop of Dexron III has been designed to be backwards-compatible. It`s interaction with "modern oil" is a moot point, as you`re only leaving it in the engine for 20 minutes or so (at almost zero load), then draining and replacing with fresh oil.
I suggest you bag the conjecture, and leave the "reality-based reviews" to people who have actually performed this procedure....
Go on TV and perform this procedure, thats all I'm asking.
 

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Is it Trackday yet?
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I've used Seafoam and a toothbrush to clean up a very gunked up head on my Jeep - worked wonders. What I discovered was, soaking the gunked up components in the solution was not enough to dissolve the gunk. I had to agitate it with the toothbrush to remove the unwanted deposits. It did make for very easy removal however.

This vehicle was obviously not treated to regular oil changes, so within the last week I did the ATF trick. I, however, drove around for about 50 miles after replacing 1qt of oil with 1qt of Castrol Mercon V. I then drained the pan hot and later removed it to inspect the oil pickup screen. As I suspected, it was mostly clogged up with gunk. I replaced it and put it all back together, refilled with M1 and a new filter, and cranked her over. She has really good oil pressure from the start now and runs quiet and smooth.

I think there was a lot of gunk in the pan prior to running the ATF thru, but the concept of a detergent rich additive thru a neglected engine before dropping the pan made sense to me so I could clean out deposits while it was opened up.

YMMV of course and perhaps FB has some insight on the extended use of ATF in the crankcase vs a short run. My approach was discussed with a mechanic who confirmed it was a good thing to do, but not to run it long term. He suggested a day of errand hopping was ok, so that's what I did.
 

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Keeping it surreal
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Go on TV and perform this procedure, thats all I'm asking.
And I suggest that you go and *watch* TV, rather than posting gibberish on this forum....

(and I mean that in the nicest possible way)
 

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Keeping it surreal
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43,351 Posts
I've used Seafoam and a toothbrush to clean up a very gunked up head on my Jeep - worked wonders. What I discovered was, soaking the gunked up components in the solution was not enough to dissolve the gunk. I had to agitate it with the toothbrush to remove the unwanted deposits. It did make for very easy removal however.

This vehicle was obviously not treated to regular oil changes, so within the last week I did the ATF trick. I, however, drove around for about 50 miles after replacing 1qt of oil with 1qt of Castrol Mercon V. I then drained the pan hot and later removed it to inspect the oil pickup screen. As I suspected, it was mostly clogged up with gunk. I replaced it and put it all back together, refilled with M1 and a new filter, and cranked her over. She has really good oil pressure from the start now and runs quiet and smooth.

I think there was a lot of gunk in the pan prior to running the ATF thru, but the concept of a detergent rich additive thru a neglected engine before dropping the pan made sense to me so I could clean out deposits while it was opened up.

YMMV of course and perhaps FB has some insight on the extended use of ATF in the crankcase vs a short run. My approach was discussed with a mechanic who confirmed it was a good thing to do, but not to run it long term. He suggested a day of errand hopping was ok, so that's what I did.
While the qt. of ATF only represents less than 15% of an E46`s oil capacity, I was erring on the side of caution, and running the engine at a fast idle (2500 RPM or so) for about 20 minutes, as opposed to driving it, and placing more of an operational load on the slightly-diluted viscosity oil. It appears that your method worked well also. I`ve performed this technique (and seen it done by others) *plenty* of times, with no ill effects.
 
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