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      08-18-2012, 11:44 PM   #1
yjoonee
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Did engine oil change (328i) myself today

Our 328i hit 4k miles today. This is our family's 1st BMW and 15k/1year oil change interval seemed really cool but scares the hell out of me. I change engine oil around 3k~5k for all of our family cars. My personal 03 G35 coupe bought new 9 years ago has 156k miles and still runs like champ I still believe it's because I change engine oil (synthetic) every 3k~4k miles.

I tried to search for engine oil capacity for our N20 engine, but had no luck. Owners manual just tells you to get engine oil change at the dealer... which is very informative... I called local BMW dealer today and asked one of the service adviser how much engine oil one should put with a new engine filter. The guy tells me 7qts... it seemed too much for a 2.0L engine (ex. Nissan 3.5L engines take 5qts) so I told him to check again for me. He put me on hold and got back to me 5 min later saying he was wrong and the engine should take 5 quarts after the oil change I ran the oil level check in the vehicle info screen, it was right at the top of max mark.

bought the filter from the dealer ($13.74), 5qts of 5w-30 Mobil 1 synthetic from walmart ($28)... and 30 min of my weekend time.

the oil from the engine was REALLY dirty. Way too dirty/black for me to have it in the car for another 11k miles, the 1st oil change the BMW has scheduled for the car. Also, I found very small chunks of metal bottom of the oil drain pan which I clearly cleaned before doing the engine oil change. This clearly is not good for the engine in long run.

Many people who lease the car prob wont give a $hit, but I just wanted to inform those of who wants to keep the car for many years to come.

Last edited by yjoonee; 08-18-2012 at 11:47 PM. Reason: more info
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      08-19-2012, 02:15 AM   #2
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Cool. I'm going to change my oil soon as well. You should explain your steps in a DIY Oil Change thread in the DIY section.
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      08-19-2012, 09:39 AM   #3
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Thanks for the info! Can you do a DIY guide or video if possible?

Thanks!
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      08-19-2012, 01:40 PM   #4
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why does 15k scare you? i'm over 10k miles with original oil. these engines are meant for it, they were designed that way. times have changed.
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      08-19-2012, 02:48 PM   #5
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I got the camera ready, was going to take pictures and write the steps but I thought, "I think I saw a DIY somewhere... eh... maybe I shouldn't repost a DIY" so I didnt... haha

I ran into a little trouble when I got under the car after the car was all lifted on jack stands... 10mm Hex socket was required to loosen the oil drain plug... and I didn't have one... had to run to a local auto parts store (was $4 something) other previous vehicles required regular socket. I love how the BMW engines have filters on top of the engine, takes less time under the car. I really didn't like how the little door that accesses the oil plug opens toward the front of the car. But then again wind travels front to the rear most of the time so it makes sense...

if you guys have any questions, ask me!
This is the only picture I got from yesterday...
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Last edited by yjoonee; 08-19-2012 at 03:06 PM.
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      08-19-2012, 03:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcl0328 View Post
why does 15k scare you? i'm over 10k miles with original oil. these engines are meant for it, they were designed that way. times have changed.
BMW and people like you might be right about being OK with 15k mile oil changes. After finding out a 2.0L engine taking 5qts of oil kinda explains why... but I still will change the oil around 4~5k miles regards what other people say. like I have stated on the original post, I found small bits of metal in the bottom of the old oil. Yes the oil filter will filter it out but 100% of them? not so sure... I just don't like having $hit inside my engines for long time and 15k miles is long time.

It's your car, you can do wtv with it. Earlier engine oil changes doesn't hurt me (time wise or financial wise) in anyway nor the car. So why not? It's not like I am giving engine oil change every 1000 miles right? haha
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      08-19-2012, 05:03 PM   #7
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have you ever had your oil analyzed? the color alone won't tell you.
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      09-12-2012, 11:20 PM   #8
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hi, a little question

Hi, i'm planning to change engine oil by myself too for every 5000km since 20000km is too much for me. and i hear some people say that if i change engine oil myself the computer system will some how have some problems, like always showing engine oil has problem or whatever, so do you mind to tell me how did you avoid those problems with the computers? thank you very much
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      09-16-2012, 09:40 AM   #9
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These long oil change intervals are for BMW to save money, not more efficient oil, let's stop that dream right now.

Prior to the BMW predicted service the oil was recommended by BMW in all of their literature to be changed every 8-10 k km.

All of a sudden free oil changes and the interval doubles and BMW says its ok, dream on.

Gotta remember that majority of original owners will replace car at end of warranty. It's the owners that own past 100k km that will see any issues.

I pay for my changes at dealership at every half interval.

It really depends on how long you plan to own the car.
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      09-16-2012, 05:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yjoonee View Post
Our 328i hit 4k miles today. This is our family's 1st BMW and 15k/1year oil change interval seemed really cool but scares the hell out of me. I change engine oil around 3k~5k for all of our family cars. My personal 03 G35 coupe bought new 9 years ago has 156k miles and still runs like champ I still believe it's because I change engine oil (synthetic) every 3k~4k miles.

I tried to search for engine oil capacity for our N20 engine, but had no luck. Owners manual just tells you to get engine oil change at the dealer... which is very informative... I called local BMW dealer today and asked one of the service adviser how much engine oil one should put with a new engine filter. The guy tells me 7qts... it seemed too much for a 2.0L engine (ex. Nissan 3.5L engines take 5qts) so I told him to check again for me. He put me on hold and got back to me 5 min later saying he was wrong and the engine should take 5 quarts after the oil change I ran the oil level check in the vehicle info screen, it was right at the top of max mark.

bought the filter from the dealer ($13.74), 5qts of 5w-30 Mobil 1 synthetic from walmart ($28)... and 30 min of my weekend time.

the oil from the engine was REALLY dirty. Way too dirty/black for me to have it in the car for another 11k miles, the 1st oil change the BMW has scheduled for the car. Also, I found very small chunks of metal bottom of the oil drain pan which I clearly cleaned before doing the engine oil change. This clearly is not good for the engine in long run.

Many people who lease the car prob wont give a $hit, but I just wanted to inform those of who wants to keep the car for many years to come.
My BMW part dept says 5.5 quarts. So is it 5 or 5.5? I'm also an advocate to change the oil sooner than recomended by BMW. I bought mine and will have the car long past 50,000 miles.

Last edited by JPC Moose; 09-16-2012 at 05:50 PM.
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      09-16-2012, 07:33 PM   #11
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not to be a flamer or a troll or whatever, but you don't think the engineers at BMW that are paid millions of dollars each year (collectively) put extensive research into whether or not an oil change is required every 15k miles to increase durability, reliability, and longevity of the vehicles they work very hard on?
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      09-16-2012, 11:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phillye30fanboy View Post
not to be a flamer or a troll or whatever, but you don't think the engineers at BMW that are paid millions of dollars each year (collectively) put extensive research into whether or not an oil change is required every 15k miles to increase durability, reliability, and longevity of the vehicles they work very hard on?
In a word....no. BMW did a cost/benefit analysis and determined that if they were going to go ahead with the free scheduled maintenance, they were going to have to eliminate some costs somewhere else. Knocking 2 oil changes off the schedule certainly helps.
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      09-17-2012, 01:13 PM   #13
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does the f30 not have an oil sensor to detect when the oil needs to be changed?

that is if you live in an area with poor fuels etc bmw will change the oil when required?

so all these fancy new sensors were not around back when the vehicles were serviced every 8k to 10k cost of the sensors offset by the less frequent servicing? what about all the R&D into the new tech?
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      09-17-2012, 03:16 PM   #14
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It's interesting that on the worldwide diplomatic price list, you can pick from 5 different oil change intervals to be pre-programed into the car.

Since I like in Europe, it's set to the usual 25,000km, but could be as low as 10k for some markets. You also get options like "poor quality fuel tuning" - maybe the two are related.

I doubt very much BMW do this to save money - quite the opposite. I don't know anyone with fixed servicing in Europe - generally the dealers want to get you in there as often as possible so they can sell you 10 euro oil for 20 euros.
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      09-18-2012, 02:40 PM   #15
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BMW only cares that the car functions flawlessly til the end of warranty....after that it's not their problem. Think about it for a second.

Absolutely everything passes through a cost/benefit calculator. If cost> benefit, then x doesn't happen. If Benefit to BMW > Cost then x does happen.

Oil changes are a perfect example. Oil has improved, filters have improved, engines have improved....the years of 3k oil changes are gone. However how much you are willing to go over that is your choice. BMW says your car will be fine til the end of its warranty with 15k oil changes....So if not owning past warranty who cares? If you plan on keeping it past warranty then you should care and possibly think on your own vs. trusting other people.
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      09-19-2012, 10:12 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Mrcarcrazy View Post
BMW only cares that the car functions flawlessly til the end of warranty....after that it's not their problem. Think about it for a second.

Absolutely everything passes through a cost/benefit calculator. If cost> benefit, then x doesn't happen. If Benefit to BMW > Cost then x does happen.

Oil changes are a perfect example. Oil has improved, filters have improved, engines have improved....the years of 3k oil changes are gone. However how much you are willing to go over that is your choice. BMW says your car will be fine til the end of its warranty with 15k oil changes....So if not owning past warranty who cares? If you plan on keeping it past warranty then you should care and possibly think on your own vs. trusting other people.
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      10-01-2012, 12:07 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by JPC Moose View Post
My BMW part dept says 5.5 quarts. So is it 5 or 5.5? I'm also an advocate to change the oil sooner than recomended by BMW. I bought mine and will have the car long past 50,000 miles.
It's 5 quarts. I did some research and local BMW service dept checked it for me. After the engine oil change, if you run the oil level check built in our cars, it's right at the top of the Max level line.
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      10-01-2012, 09:22 AM   #18
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I also had my oil changed at 4000 miles, but I had the dealer do it.

They put in SAE 5W-30 LONGLIFE 832511 (P/N 07510017954)

They charged me for 7 quarts of oil. Hummm...
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      10-01-2012, 09:35 AM   #19
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I changed the oil and filter on my 328i this past Saturday, at 1500 miles. Before I put in the new oil, I poured the old oil from my catch pan into the 5 quart jug I use for recycling, and it was almost exactly 5 quarts (so that's how much I added back in). When I was buying the oil and filter at the BMW dealer, the guy at the parts counter insisted that it was going to take 6.5 quarts, which I found hard to believe. Oh well, now I have two spare quarts on my shelf.

My one surprise was the plastic engine oil pan. I know I read that the N20 had a plastic pan some time ago, but frankly I had forgotten that fact. Does the N55 have a plastic oil pan too? The weight savings is a good thing, but I wonder if anyone has ever managed to break one.
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      10-01-2012, 03:46 PM   #20
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I changed the oil and filter on my 328i this past Saturday, at 1500 miles. Before I put in the new oil, I poured the old oil from my catch pan into the 5 quart jug I use for recycling, and it was almost exactly 5 quarts (so that's how much I added back in). When I was buying the oil and filter at the BMW dealer, the guy at the parts counter insisted that it was going to take 6.5 quarts, which I found hard to believe. Oh well, now I have two spare quarts on my shelf.

My one surprise was the plastic engine oil pan. I know I read that the N20 had a plastic pan some time ago, but frankly I had forgotten that fact. Does the N55 have a plastic oil pan too? The weight savings is a good thing, but I wonder if anyone has ever managed to break one.
another Elige owner.
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      10-03-2012, 07:00 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rado View Post
I changed the oil and filter on my 328i this past Saturday, at 1500 miles. Before I put in the new oil, I poured the old oil from my catch pan into the 5 quart jug I use for recycling, and it was almost exactly 5 quarts (so that's how much I added back in). When I was buying the oil and filter at the BMW dealer, the guy at the parts counter insisted that it was going to take 6.5 quarts, which I found hard to believe. Oh well, now I have two spare quarts on my shelf.

My one surprise was the plastic engine oil pan. I know I read that the N20 had a plastic pan some time ago, but frankly I had forgotten that fact. Does the N55 have a plastic oil pan too? The weight savings is a good thing, but I wonder if anyone has ever managed to break one.
What type of drain plug? The parts dept gave me a metal flat washer for the plug. This baffles me for I saw on another sight that the plug took an o-ring. It amazes me that there is disparity from one BMW parts dept to another.
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      10-03-2012, 07:14 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPC Moose View Post
What type of drain plug? The parts dept gave me a metal flat washer for the plug. This baffles me for I saw on another sight that the plug took an o-ring. It amazes me that there is disparity from one BMW parts dept to another.
Yes, the plastic drain plug takes an o-ring. The BMW replacement oil filter included a plastic bag with replacement o-rings *and* a metal crush washer, but there was no need for the metal washer. I assume some other model takes the same oil filter and has a conventional metal oil plug (and pan) that takes the washer.

BTW, a low range torque wrench and 3/8" hex driver (socket) is good to have for reseating the oil drain plug, as the tightening spec (marked on the plug) is only 7 N-m (62 in-lb). You could do it by feel, but the tendency would probably be to over-torque it.

HTH,
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