'02 BMW 530i (M54) - Pennzoil Platinum 5w30 - 7500 mi

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New car to me, with dealer maintenance all its life. That said, it needed a lot of work in the past 7500 miles, so wanted to check that it was actually worth it. Did all the usual BMW cooling parts, valve covers, thermostat (stuck at 140 degrees). ECU indicates that there is a vacuum leak in the intake system, which I have tried in vain to locate. Used several types of smoke tests. Car is mostly highway driven on a 30+ miles commute one way. This car gets more of the stop and go driving, but that's <25% of the run time. Thoughts on this UOA? I was expecting more particulates to show up if the intake was leaking, but I'm not seeing it. Copper seems a little high, but other UOAs seem to show that as well ( https://www.bobistheoilguy.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=2236223 ). Finally, to be honest, the oil was a fill at a tire & lube place where the car was inspected. So it's some kind of Pennzoil, but I can't be sure what. Refilled it with Mobil 1 0w40. Run it to 10k? [Linked Image]
 
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Is the secondary air vacuum line intact? It's a total pain to find it's port upside down on the back of the bottom of the manifold. I miss my 530. The m54 is a great motor, although it's a bit let down by the 5hp19 behind it.
 
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Originally Posted by atomix8
Finally, to be honest, the oil was a fill at a tire & lube place where the car was inspected. So it's some kind of Pennzoil, but I can't be sure what.
Technically, that is the wrong oil to use in an M54. Although, BMW has been running a lot of similar oil these days (HTHS 2.6 to 3.0) category like your 5w30 in newer BMW's. ... And it does look like it is indeed the SN+ GF5 dexos1 HTHS 3.0 version of a synthetic here, since calcium is low (anti LSPI), and the low ZDDP looks like the non-Euro oils out there. Its not Pennzoil Platinum since Platinum does not have Titanium (antiwear and friction reducer). Pennzoil doesn't use titanium in any of their oils currently. ......... Looks like Castrol Edge synthetic 5w30 SN+ GF5 dexos1 oil here if I had to guess, good oil. Valvoline synthetic has titanium these days so it could be that one. Its not Mobil1. The good news is, your wear numbers like iron and aluminum, are very low, except copper might be a tad high, nothing to worry about here, it seemed to do fine.
Originally Posted by atomix8
Refilled it with Mobil 1 0w40. Run it to 10k?
Great choice. Really the "right" HTHS 3.5 or 3.6 oil there, slightly thicker. I wonder if BMW doesn't say you can use an LL-01FE HTHS 3.0 oil in there though. Still M1 0w40 is a safe choice for sure. Yes run to 10k or 1 year if you're not short-tripping it. If mostly short trips, just do 6 months regardless of miles.
 
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I see you found my 330Ci UOAs. My copper has continued to average about 17 ppm, I am now at about 150,000 miles. I would not worry about your 16 ppm. I would probably stick with 7500 miles with the Mobil 1 0w-40, I had a TBN of 1.8 at ~8000 miles on Mobil1 (with 1 qt of make up oil) I'll second the secondary air vacuum tube as possible leak, common on the M54. Especially if you have any SAP codes. It connects at the right front of the engine by the exhaust, and runs around the back of the head to the intake manifold. Here is the diagram - https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/showparts?id=BD53-USA-02-2003-E46-BMW-330Ci&diagId=11_2203
 
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Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
M54 is spec'd for oils with a HTHS of 3.5 or more. That would be LL01 (A3/B4) or LL04(C3). .
LL01 not needed here. MB 229.5 is all that is required for an M54. The Mobil1 0w40 just put in has 229.5 which is plenty.
 
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Originally Posted by paoester
Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
M54 is spec'd for oils with a HTHS of 3.5 or more. That would be LL01 (A3/B4) or LL04(C3). .
LL01 not needed here. MB 229.5 is all that is required for an M54. The Mobil1 0w40 just put in has 229.5 which is plenty.
Stop. 229.5 is not "all that's required" because 229.5 only pertains to Mercedes Benz, that's not to say that 229.5 wouldn't be "ok". Technically and current A3/B4 or C3 is "required" and any OE certs on the bottle are just an added bonus.
 
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Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
Stop. 229.5 is not "all that's required" because 229.5 only pertains to Mercedes Benz, that's not to say that 229.5 wouldn't be "ok".
Wrong. 229.5 is tougher on sludge, wear, and piston deposits. That makes LL-01 a lower performance spec.
Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
Technically and current A3/B4 or C3 is "required" and any OE certs on the bottle are just an added bonus.
Almost true.
 

atomix8

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Originally Posted by shanneba
I see you found my 330Ci UOAs. My copper has continued to average about 17 ppm, I am now at about 150,000 miles. I would not worry about your 16 ppm. I would probably stick with 7500 miles with the Mobil 1 0w-40, I had a TBN of 1.8 at ~8000 miles on Mobil1 (with 1 qt of make up oil) I'll second the secondary air vacuum tube as possible leak, common on the M54. Especially if you have any SAP codes. It connects at the right front of the engine by the exhaust, and runs around the back of the head to the intake manifold.
Appreciate all the feedback folks. I'll probably go 7500 unless I do more of my long trips on this car. Appreciate the secondary air suggestion as well, I had checked that and replaced both flexible and hard vacuum lines going to it. I bypassed the (failed) BMW PCV system with a basic PCV valve as popular on the BMW forums, I'm wondering if that's sucking enough air past the rings to create the lean code. I'm going to stop worrying though. And please stop worrying about 229.5, LL01, etc. It's getting babied versus the factory intervals! I'll do a 15w40 run soon if folks want to really raise their pitchforks.
 

atomix8

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Originally Posted by paoester
And it does look like it is indeed the SN+ GF5 dexos1 HTHS 3.0 version of a synthetic here, since calcium is low (anti LSPI), and the low ZDDP looks like the non-Euro oils out there. Its not Pennzoil Platinum since Platinum does not have Titanium (antiwear and friction reducer). Pennzoil doesn't use titanium in any of their oils currently. ......... Looks like Castrol Edge synthetic 5w30 SN+ GF5 dexos1 oil here if I had to guess, good oil. Valvoline synthetic has titanium these days so it could be that one. Its not Mobil1. The good news is, your wear numbers like iron and aluminum, are very low, except copper might be a tad high, nothing to worry about here, it seemed to do fine.
Love the investigative work!
 
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Originally Posted by paoester
Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
Stop. 229.5 is not "all that's required" because 229.5 only pertains to Mercedes Benz, that's not to say that 229.5 wouldn't be "ok".
Wrong. 229.5 is tougher on sludge, wear, and piston deposits. That makes LL-01 a lower performance spec.
Ya, and so what. The old LL01 will experience less oxidative thickening then the current 229.50. Big freaking deal.
Originally Posted by paoester
Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
Technically and current A3/B4 or C3 is "required" and any OE certs on the bottle are just an added bonus.
Almost true.
Actually very true. The current ACEA A3/B4 (2016), C3 (2016) are very close performance wise to the final update of LL01 and well above the A3/B4 circa late 1990's early 2000's, which LL01 was based on at the time.
 
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Originally Posted by atomix8
Originally Posted by shanneba
I see you found my 330Ci UOAs. My copper has continued to average about 17 ppm, I am now at about 150,000 miles. I would not worry about your 16 ppm. I would probably stick with 7500 miles with the Mobil 1 0w-40, I had a TBN of 1.8 at ~8000 miles on Mobil1 (with 1 qt of make up oil) I'll second the secondary air vacuum tube as possible leak, common on the M54. Especially if you have any SAP codes. It connects at the right front of the engine by the exhaust, and runs around the back of the head to the intake manifold.
Appreciate all the feedback folks. I'll probably go 7500 unless I do more of my long trips on this car. Appreciate the secondary air suggestion as well, I had checked that and replaced both flexible and hard vacuum lines going to it. I bypassed the (failed) BMW PCV system with a basic PCV valve as popular on the BMW forums, I'm wondering if that's sucking enough air past the rings to create the lean code. I'm going to stop worrying though. And please stop worrying about 229.5, LL01, etc. It's getting babied versus the factory intervals! I'll do a 15w40 run soon if folks want to really raise their pitchforks.
thumbsup
 

atomix8

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Found these and figured this is as good a place as any. Pictures of ~100k service with valve cover replacement (seems like these need it every few years. Last gasket was date coded 2011 I think). Plugs didn't look great, especially #2. [Linked Image] [Linked Image]
 
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Originally Posted by paoester
Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
M54 is spec'd for oils with a HTHS of 3.5 or more. That would be LL01 (A3/B4) or LL04(C3). .
LL01 not needed here. MB 229.5 is all that is required for an M54. The Mobil1 0w40 just put in has 229.5 which is plenty.
SO specification that was introduced in 2009 is required for an engine from beginning of 2000's?
 
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Originally Posted by BMWTurboDzl
Engine pron!!
...‚.. right!.. good to know I'm not the only one.🤘
 
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