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The oil sensor blows away dipping a metal rod down into the engine and seeing where the level is. The sensor constantly measures quantity AND quality.

For those of you that simply can't part with your old, old, really old technology, why don't you stick a stick in the gas tank to measure the gas level if it makes you feel better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
The oil sensor blows away dipping a metal rod down into the engine and seeing where the level is. The sensor constantly measures quantity AND quality.

For those of you that simply can't part with your old, old, really old technology, why don't you stick a stick in the gas tank to measure the gas level if it makes you feel better.
I'm pretty sure the sensor doesn't measure quality. If your talking about the oil change interval then that is usually handled by the onboard computer monitoring an number of parameters and many of them aren't oil related.

And if you are happy with no dipstick, fine, you don't have to have one. I prefer having one.

Thanks to those that have made USEFUL comments.
 

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I'm pretty sure the sensor doesn't measure quality. If your talking about the oil change interval then that is usually handled by the onboard computer monitoring an number of parameters and many of them aren't oil related.

And if you are happy with no dipstick, fine, you don't have to have one. I prefer having one.

Thanks to those that have made USEFUL comments.
Before slamming posters who disagree with you, I suggest you do your homework - they do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Before slamming posters who disagree with you, I suggest you do your homework - they do.
So you did, my hat is off to you. But if you want to talk about "slamming" posters, well I never directly slammed you, but you could infer same I guess if you are really sensitive.

So why don't we leave it at this;
The oil sensor does measure one parameter, conductivity, of the oil. This info is then feed into the bcm and the computer uses that parameter, and others, to signal when an oil change is needed.

Now we are back to my "old old really old technology" which I prefer and you don't see the need for.

Have a great day.
 

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Folks, the oil change interval is simply a function of how much fuel is consumed. Each service interval is a specified # of litres of fuel; In the older E46 and X3, it's 2500 litres of fuel until the next oil change/Inspection.
 

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Folks, the oil change interval is simply a function of how much fuel is consumed. Each service interval is a specified # of litres of fuel; In the older E46 and X3, it's 2500 litres of fuel until the next oil change/Inspection.
I'm not sure if that's the way it used to be, but the new sensors actually will change its recommendation based on when your oil needs changing, not just on how much gas you've burned.
 

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Really?! I've never had one fail me in more than 30 years of checking them. You love not having one? Did one cause you some kind of inconvenience or distress in the past? :confused:
If you're on a hill.....the level vaires if the engine is cold or warm. I just feel the electronic one is more reliable, and of course it is just easier. Everyone just needs to quit whining about not having a dipstick.
 

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If you're on a hill.....the level vaires if the engine is cold or warm. I just feel the electronic one is more reliable, and of course it is just easier. Everyone just needs to quit whining about not having a dipstick.
+1, I don't really see the big deal about it. I mean, nobody cares about not having a splash tube that you can directly check the fuel level - you go by the float sensor. It is progress.

Really what people should be asking is how often does the electronic sensor give erroneous readings, and is it fault-tolerant / reporting errors. The answers are essentially never, and yes. Clinging to a dipstick is just kind of ridiculous IMO.
 

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For those of us who change oil in between the BMW computed maximum interval, the dipstick issue isn't important. New cars burn so little oil that the loss between frequent changes is not significant. If the car is burning oil and the service interval is long then dangerous low levels can exist but for most of us the oil level never gets low enough to cause a problem before we change the oil.

That's been my experience and I too initially felt uneasy about not having a way to check the oil manually. I really is not a big deal.
 

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+1, I don't really see the big deal about it. I mean, nobody cares about not having a splash tube that you can directly check the fuel level - you go by the float sensor. It is progress.

Really what people should be asking is how often does the electronic sensor give erroneous readings, and is it fault-tolerant / reporting errors. The answers are essentially never, and yes. Clinging to a dipstick is just kind of ridiculous IMO.
+2 ... My thoughts exactly.
 

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Breaking in the Pony
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I don't have a problem with the sensor, but the lack of a dipstick irritates the hell out of me. Now, I have to get down under the car to do an oil change, instead of using a vac unit to pull it out from above.

Same deal if someone overfills your sump (it's happened to me during a service before). With a dipstick, you can get a measured amount out easily with a small pump. With the sensor, you need to do a pull-it-out-and-shove-it-in-quick deal with the sump plug.

Didn't stop me from getting the car, obviously, nor did the runflats. Would have preferred otherwise, but that's how it goes.


FWIW,
George
 

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Folks, the oil change interval is simply a function of how much fuel is consumed. Each service interval is a specified # of litres of fuel; In the older E46 and X3, it's 2500 litres of fuel until the next oil change/Inspection.
It doesn't sound like liters of fuel consumed is a reliable predictor of oil degradation. Conductivity certainly isn't a measure that I would gamble $16,000 worth of engine on. Used oil analysis to find the point just before the oil fails specification? Any day of the year. As others have posted, with a dipstick tube, it is real easy to get a sample of oil to send off for analysis.
 

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+1, I don't really see the big deal about it. I mean, nobody cares about not having a splash tube that you can directly check the fuel level - you go by the float sensor. It is progress.

Really what people should be asking is how often does the electronic sensor give erroneous readings, and is it fault-tolerant / reporting errors. The answers are essentially never, and yes. Clinging to a dipstick is just kind of ridiculous IMO.
+1

The "omg no dipstick" complaints are getting pretty old. This technology has now been on the car for going on 5 years now and I'm comfortable with its reliability.

As for the people overfilling their crankcase, only the half wits that don't read instructions would do this. The manual is very clear and the OBC/iDrive instruct you when to add exactly one quart. There shouldn't be any guesswork.
 

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Think about it: The Condition Based Service takes into accounts such as your driving habits and conditions when determining the remaining life of the oil. Supposedly, if you drive frequent short trips in cold temperatures and/or drive more aggressively, the oil needs more frequent changing, right?

And yet at the same time, fuel consumption is also affected by the factors above. If you drive aggressively and do mostly urban driving, you're consuming fuel faster, thereby shortening the remaining interval. If you do longer trips under gentler throttle, you're consuming less fuel, thereby the countdown does not fall as quickly.

If the fancy way to analyse oil quality was actually used, wouldn't the countdown grow considerably after anyone does an interim oil change? In such a case, after I do an oil change by myself at 12000km, shouldn't the countdown re-zero itself to 25000km? Or maybe it should grow to 18000km. But no. It continues to decrease at about the same rate.

By the way, the car DOES measure the quantity of fuel consumed (in litres) since the last service. It knows!
 

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Breaking in the Pony
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If the fancy way to analyse oil quality was actually used, wouldn't the countdown grow considerably after anyone does an interim oil change? In such a case, after I do an oil change by myself at 12000km, shouldn't the countdown re-zero itself to 25000km? Or maybe it should grow to 18000km. But no. It continues to decrease at about the same rate.
Same here. I did my first oil change just shy of 3000 miles. At that time, I was showing 15,000 miles to service. About a week later, it dropped to 14,000. Seems unlikely it was a change in some measurable quantity in the oil.

Now, it could go the other way. "Driving style" could used to determine when the next "normal" change is due, with a capacitance / resistance / who-knows-what measurement on the oil being used to determine if it has gone south for other reasons (thus triggering an earlier change).

George
 

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Well, as much as I know it's progress, my E46 also has an oil level sensor that I've replaced twice in two years because it failed (a known weak point in the E46).

Now, I'm willing to believe that technology has progressed beyond the rather flaky oil level sensor in the E46, and that the new ones are infallible; but I work in technology and know full well how fallible it can be.

On the bright side, my perspective is that if BMW says the car KNOWS when the oil runs low, then theoretically I can hold BMW liable if my engine explodes because the car never told me the car was low on oil, or that it blew a seal because I overfilled it because the car kept telling me to add an unnecessary quart (more likely given failure modes of these sensors). I can make the argument that I was just doing what the car and therefore by extension BMW are telling me to do.

I figure... relax. The likelihood that it'll become an issue when I buy my new E90 next year is slim to nil... so I'll just chill.

Besides, there'll always be the dipstick behind the wheel...
 

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Folks, the oil change interval is simply a function of how much fuel is consumed. Each service interval is a specified # of litres of fuel; In the older E46 and X3, it's 2500 litres of fuel until the next oil change/Inspection.
False.
 
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