235k mile BMW - different oil or stick with same?

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I would drop to W40. You should not be concerned with LL01. Yes, Castrol 0W40 will do fine, but as far as I know M62 was anyway recommended for LL98. Issue with W50 is that it will increase oil temperature. I would go with W40, 5W40, 10W40 (Castrol Edge 10W40 as far as I know is available in Wal Mart and is synthetic). Maybe high mileage oil would be better to keep seals flexible.
 
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Canada
Originally Posted by kschachn
And if your engine is operating "hot" that is odd for that vintage of BMW. Most of them had large capacity cooling systems that didn't overheat. How is your thermostat? What about the aux cooling fan, is it working?
I agree. I think it's total nonsense. OP how old is your rad? My e30 also "ran hot" when I got it in 03. All shops and mechanics said it looked fine and that it was "normal" for the gauge to show slightly hotter. I knew this was nonsense as I had an 86 with a 2.7 that ran cooler. Once I had the rad changed a few years ago the engine finally ran at the cooler temp. No more worrying in summer traffic and the temp never even hits the 1/2 mark (just slightly to the left).
 
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Kalifornia Kollective
I would investigate where the oil is going. Most SMOG shops will run a sniffer test pretty cheap. It'll give HC's. Look for leaks. Look at the PCV system real careful. Then put a full can of BG 109 in 100 miles before your next change. If you have any stuck, or sticky, rings it'll free them up. I'd do that for the next three oil changes. I'll bet you consumption will drop by half. Leaks don't count ... laugh
 

racer2086

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FL
Originally Posted by Audios
Keep doing what youre doing, it made it this far so youve gotta be doing something right. If youre worried, have the oil analyzed and see if theres anything to focus on. I think a quality 15/40 would work well, Shell t5 is on sale on amazon, 15$ for a gallon, semi syn. Have you had your vanos or timing chains redone at any point in its life?
It wasn't so much worried as, hmm let me get some opinions on this. I have no problem spending the ~$10 more per 5 quart container if the synthetic is a better idea to run than the conventional I've been using. I replaced the timing chain guides myself preventatively at 195k miles. I replaced all gaskets, chains, etc etc. Also the OSV, CCV -- basically everything in the PCV system.
 
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Originally Posted by racer2086
Originally Posted by Audios
Keep doing what youre doing, it made it this far so youve gotta be doing something right. If youre worried, have the oil analyzed and see if theres anything to focus on. I think a quality 15/40 would work well, Shell t5 is on sale on amazon, 15$ for a gallon, semi syn. Have you had your vanos or timing chains redone at any point in its life?
It wasn't so much worried as, hmm let me get some opinions on this. I have no problem spending the ~$10 more per 5 quart container if the synthetic is a better idea to run than the conventional I've been using. I replaced the timing chain guides myself preventatively at 195k miles. I replaced all gaskets, chains, etc etc. Also the OSV, CCV -- basically everything in the PCV system.
There is quite a few owners who prefer to use HDEO conventional and or the 20W50 like you. There really is no better or best.
 
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823
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South Carolina
Originally Posted by racer2086
I see Castrol High Mileage, Castrol Magnatec (blend), Castrol Edge (synthetic), Castrol Edge High Mileage, and I start thinking...should I at least be using a high mileage oil?
I switched from Pennzoil Platinum 5w30 to Pennzoil Platinum HM 5W30 over a year ago in my Cadillac. Prior to the switch I was using about 1 qt/1000 miles. No leaks, so likely burning the oil as GM 3.6l engines are known to do. After the switch the oil use went down to about 1 qt/4000 miles. Therefore, switching to HM can reduce consumption, at least in some cases. Importantly, however, this benefit came at a cost. My engine has always had a very slight timing chain rattle on cold starts, as GM 3.6l engines are well-known to do at some point in their lives. After using HM for about a 1.5 years I noticed the rattle was a little more prominent, and occurred any time the car sat for more than 30 min. As I was planning for a new timing chain install, it was again time for an oil change. This time I used Castrol Magnatec syn 5w30 because it was a killer deal at $1/qt. After about a week on Magnatec the rattle went back to its former self...just a very slight rattle only on cold starts. My interpretation is that the HM failed to maintain pressure in the tensioner as well as non-HM oil did. I don't know exactly why this happened, but apparently the PPHM lacks intelligent molecules, LOL! It is therefore hard to say whether an HM oil would be a good choice for your BMW. I don't think it would cause new problems but could exacerbate some while helping others. If I try HM again it will likely be Maxlife syn or Edge syn. Just because the PP HM was less than ideal.
 
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racer2086

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FL
Originally Posted by SilverFusion2010
The 20w-50 conventional will run 7500 miles The Castrol 0w-40 is the "correct" oil If you go with the M1 10w-40 route, they run rebates twice a year. $12 back on a 5qt jug, buying at Walmart it comes out around $13 for a 5qt jug of syn. M1 has a good 0w-40 HDEO 15w-40 or 5w-40 would also work fine. Penzoil also runs rebates, and they have a full syn 0w-40 euro oil available at Walmart. If the consumption bothers you I would try different oils until I found the one that seems to slow the consumption. Nothing wrong with keeping your same regimen. That amount of consumption is pretty low considering the mileage. Might be worth checking the PCV valve if it has one, when the internal spring weakens manifold vacuum can pull oil mist from the crankcase straight into the intake.
Thanks for the info. PCV system is fairly new, as I replaced everything about 40k miles ago when I did the timing chain guides.
Originally Posted by edyvw
I would drop to W40. You should not be concerned with LL01. Yes, Castrol 0W40 will do fine, but as far as I know M62 was anyway recommended for LL98. Issue with W50 is that it will increase oil temperature. I would go with W40, 5W40, 10W40 (Castrol Edge 10W40 as far as I know is available in Wal Mart and is synthetic). Maybe high mileage oil would be better to keep seals flexible.
Yeah thinking about the Castrol 5w-40 synthetic. I looked at the 0w-40 European Formula Mobil 1 synthetic jug I just bought at Walmart for the 540 and it says nothing on it about BMW LL-01. It used to be approved for it a couple years ago, which is why I used it in that car. Now online, their oil finder says they don't offer oil in the US for my car. Nor does my Castrol conventional 20w-50 bottles or 10w-40 bottles have the rating. But the Castrol Edge 0w-30, 0w-40, and 5w-40 are all LL-01 rated. I think I may do what was mentioned before and do the obvious: just go with whatever is LL-01 approved. I'll switch both cars to Castrol Edge 5w-40 for the LL-01 rating and the 5w because its FL and rarely cold here.
Originally Posted by dave1251
There is quite a few owners who prefer to use HDEO conventional and or the 20W50 like you. There really is no better or best.
I think the bottom line is I could probably use any of these and still be fine.
Originally Posted by RyanY
I switched from Pennzoil Platinum 5w30 to Pennzoil Platinum HM 5W30 over a year ago in my Cadillac. Prior to the switch I was using about 1 qt/1000 miles. No leaks, so likely burning the oil as GM 3.6l engines are known to do. After the switch the oil use went down to about 1 qt/4000 miles. Therefore, switching to HM can reduce consumption, at least in some cases. Importantly, however, this benefit came at a cost. My engine has always had a very slight timing chain rattle on cold starts, as GM 3.6l engines are well-known to do at some point in their lives. After using HM for about a 1.5 years I noticed the rattle was a little more prominent, and occurred any time the car sat for more than 30 min. As I was planning for a new timing chain install, it was again time for an oil change. This time I used Castrol Magnatec syn 5w30 because it was a killer deal at $1/qt. After about a week on Magnatec the rattle went back to its former self...just a very slight rattle only on cold starts. My interpretation is that the HM failed to maintain pressure in the tensioner as well as non-HM oil did. I don't know exactly why this happened, but apparently the PPHM lacks intelligent molecules, LOL! It is therefore hard to say whether an HM oil would be a good choice for your BMW. I don't think it would cause new problems but could exacerbate some while helping others. If I try HM again it will likely be Maxlife syn or Edge syn. Just because the PP HM was less than ideal.
Interesting experience you had. I'm inclined not to go there with the HM oils, due to the fact that I don't have any leaks or noises. I don't want the seal swellers and stuff like that if I don't need them.
 
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As far as HM oils they use additional seal conditioners not dwellers. If there was a leak don't expect miracles to happen. All in all you seem to have the concept of down for your BMW.
 
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Originally Posted by racer2086
Hello forum. I figured this would be the place to ask. I have a '98 740il with 235k miles on it, driven in FL, sees a good mix of highway and around town. I drive it pretty easy, but get on it at times. The V8s in these older BMWs run hot -- 100-110*C. Does city driving during the week and 500 mile round trip highway road trips on occasional weekends. Been in the family since 29k miles. I maintain everything myself. For years the well known euro shop in south FL used Castrol 20w-50 in it, so I continued with that when I got the car 8 years ago. I dropped down to 10w-40, when I spent time in CT in school, then switched back to 20w-50 when I moved back to FL. Reason for asking this is that I noticed with the my higher mileage that I "burn" about a quart every 3-4k miles. I just had to top up a quart to get back to full the other day after about 3500 miles. I change the oil every 7500 miles or so, which is half of the normal interval that the car says to do with the "oil lights" in the dash. I buy my oil at Walmart because they've got the best price. They were out of the conventional 20w-50 the other day so I start looking around and thinking about all the other oils there. I see Castrol High Mileage, Castrol Magnatec (blend), Castrol Edge (synthetic), Castrol Edge High Mileage, and I start thinking...should I at least be using a high mileage oil? Thanks!
I'd stick with conventional Castrol 20w50 but i would lower your OCI to 4,000-5,000 miles. The Castol High Mileage Syn Blend 20W50 is also an excellent oil and might help to slow any minor leaks. The BMW 15K OCI is an interval based on Synthetic oil i believe.
 
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Originally Posted by hominid7
Originally Posted by racer2086
Hello forum. I figured this would be the place to ask. I have a '98 740il with 235k miles on it, driven in FL, sees a good mix of highway and around town. I drive it pretty easy, but get on it at times. The V8s in these older BMWs run hot -- 100-110*C. Does city driving during the week and 500 mile round trip highway road trips on occasional weekends. Been in the family since 29k miles. I maintain everything myself. For years the well known euro shop in south FL used Castrol 20w-50 in it, so I continued with that when I got the car 8 years ago. I dropped down to 10w-40, when I spent time in CT in school, then switched back to 20w-50 when I moved back to FL. Reason for asking this is that I noticed with the my higher mileage that I "burn" about a quart every 3-4k miles. I just had to top up a quart to get back to full the other day after about 3500 miles. I change the oil every 7500 miles or so, which is half of the normal interval that the car says to do with the "oil lights" in the dash. I buy my oil at Walmart because they've got the best price. They were out of the conventional 20w-50 the other day so I start looking around and thinking about all the other oils there. I see Castrol High Mileage, Castrol Magnatec (blend), Castrol Edge (synthetic), Castrol Edge High Mileage, and I start thinking...should I at least be using a high mileage oil? Thanks!
I'd stick with conventional Castrol 20w50 but i would lower your OCI to 4,000-5,000 miles. The Castol High Mileage Syn Blend 20W50 is also an excellent oil and might help to slow any minor leaks. The BMW 15K OCI is an interval based on Synthetic oil i believe.
With nearly a 8 quart capacity anything less than a 7.5 K mile OCI is a waste.
 

racer2086

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Yeah, and I'd be changing my oil constantly. I just picked up 1 5qt jug of Castrol Edge 5w-40 at Walmart tonight for $24. It's only $6 more than the conventional I was using. Unfortunately, I'll have to order more online since that's all they had in store. Popular oil maybe, since it was about the only one that was totally out of the 5qt and single quart bottles. I'll try to post back with any experiences switching to this synthetic oil. No leaks now, not even seeps, since I'm OCD about my gasket replacement and sealed things well. We will see what happens.
 
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The BMW 15k oil change interval was designed by corporate beancounters, not BMW engineers. When corporate suits drum up a way to sell more cars by advertising free dealership service, the OCI magically extends. Imagine that. My M52 powered 330i had a 15k factory OCI in the manual and it did NOT like going that long between changes. Dealer mechanic said shorten it. Indy mechanic said shorten it. Common sense said shorten it. Everyone said shorten it except for the accountants. I was putting 10k miles per year on my car. There isn't an oil in the world that was designed for 18 months of stop and go city commuting. A mileage-only indicator is guesswork at best.
 
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Originally Posted by Triplicate
The BMW 15k oil change interval was designed by corporate beancounters, not BMW engineers. When corporate suits drum up a way to sell more cars by advertising free dealership service, the OCI magically extends. Imagine that. My M52 powered 330i had a 15k factory OCI in the manual and it did NOT like going that long between changes. Dealer mechanic said shorten it. Indy mechanic said shorten it. Common sense said shorten it. Everyone said shorten it except for the accountants. I was putting 10k miles per year on my car. There isn't an oil in the world that was designed for 18 months of stop and go city commuting. A mileage-only indicator is guesswork at best.
15K changes were made based on Euro fuel quality. Most Euro companies expected that US will push for ULSG same like with ULSD in 2009. However, while we got ULSD, ULSG we did not thanks to API who usually lobbied in "interest" of consumers. BMW changed OCI later to 10K.
 
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Atlanta,GA
Originally Posted by Triplicate
The BMW 15k oil change interval was designed by corporate beancounters, not BMW engineers. When corporate suits drum up a way to sell more cars by advertising free dealership service, the OCI magically extends. Imagine that. My M52 powered 330i had a 15k factory OCI in the manual and it did NOT like going that long between changes. Dealer mechanic said shorten it. Indy mechanic said shorten it. Common sense said shorten it. Everyone said shorten it except for the accountants. I was putting 10k miles per year on my car. There isn't an oil in the world that was designed for 18 months of stop and go city commuting. A mileage-only indicator is guesswork at best.
Actually it started back in the 1990's with European emissions standards and oil usage. In fact almost every technological advancement in transportation was made as a response to govt regulations. Examples: EGR, PCV, OBD, Direct Injection, TWC/DPF/SCR(Urea), ACEA long drain and/or emissions friendly specs. There was even a time when "biodegradability" was a requirement and it really hurt the euro manufacturers because plastic components were no longer holding up.
 
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Illinois
I mean trying new stuff is half the fun here right? Here’s my suggestion:

When you dump this oil, take a high quality photo of how dark it is compared to some reference you can use later for same comparative purpose.

Then run 7500 mi interval of Valvoline PB Restore to clean the old girl up a little. Check the oil for darkness when you dump it and compare it to the oil you are running now. Cut the filter open and post pics here.

Then go to whatever flavor of quality Castrol your heart desires and when you dump that oil, post photos of it. See if consumption or economy or any other engine variables improve.

Alternatively if you’re willing to spend some $$$ get some Redline or HPL HP with a long life filter and run it 15k. These oils will continue to clean the engine and are plenty tough enough to go the distance with an 8 qt sump.

Experiment. Have fun with it. That’s why you’re here. Shake it up a little. Let us live vicariously through your exploits. Buying the same old cheap stuff at Walmart is boring.
 
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...
I mean trying new stuff is half the fun here right? Here’s my suggestion:

When you dump this oil, take a high quality photo of how dark it is compared to some reference you can use later for same comparative purpose.

Then run 7500 mi interval of Valvoline PB Restore to clean the old girl up a little. Check the oil for darkness when you dump it and compare it to the oil you are running now. Cut the filter open and post pics here.

Then go to whatever flavor of quality Castrol your heart desires and when you dump that oil, post photos of it. See if consumption or economy or any other engine variables improve.

Alternatively if you’re willing to spend some $$$ get some Redline or HPL HP with a long life filter and run it 15k. These oils will continue to clean the engine and are plenty tough enough to go the distance with an 8 qt sump.

Experiment. Have fun with it. That’s why you’re here. Shake it up a little. Let us live vicariously through your exploits. Buying the same old cheap stuff at Walmart is boring.


Who are you talking to? The OP is long gone.
 
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