New to me BMW E46 330i with 153K miles. Should I use a detergent before the next oil change?

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Hmmm but everyone here tells me the engineers don’t know what they’re doing and that a 20k oci is just ridiculous. They only spec 20k ocis to lessen cost of ownership and make it seem like there’s less maintenance involved! Darn engineers! Darn CAFE! Darn API! 😏
I've seen a BMW valvetrain which looks just like photo posted by Double-Vanos but it was on the 15k mile OCI and had well over 200k miles on the odo.
 
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This might be an excellent thread to review:

 

DrivinWest

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Don't need addition detergents if it's been meticulously maintained.

Also, go with Castrol 0w40, it's a better oil than 5w40, and more readily available at Wally World
Correction: the car has used Castrol 0W40 European formula over the last 30K plus, not the 5W40 that I mentioned in the original post.

Thanks all for the direction!
 
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That's not what motor oil is designed to do.



Castrol EDGE Euro 5W-40 still carries LL01. If that engine ran Euro full-SAPS lubes its entire life then there is no reason to do a flush. If you want to be absolutely sure, run Liqui Moly Pro-Line Engine flush for 30 minutes at idle before you drain the oil. That stuff works really well. If you want to be extra clean, after the flush, put in fresh oil and drive it for a couple of days, then drain it again and fill it up with new oil. You'll be amazed that some stuff will still come out. Then you should be golden for a very long time.
30 min is 2-3x the time LM states in their instructions. I highly recommend you follow the manufacturer's instructions to the letter.
 
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To repeat:
My son had a 2009 328i prior to picking up a 2018 330i xDrive . The car had been run on BMW TPT 5W-30 or BMW TPT 0W-30 since new- with a minimum OCI of 15,000 miles/12 months; here's what it looked like at 108,000 miles:
1644707501224.jpg
 

wwillson

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To repeat:
My son had a 2009 328i prior to picking up a 2018 330i xDrive . The car had been run on BMW TPT 5W-30 or BMW TPT 0W-30 since new- with a minimum OCI of 15,000 miles/12 months; here's what it looked like at 108,000 miles:
View attachment 88743
Take a close look at the fastener heads on the springs and the front cover near the timing chains. Lots of sludge build up. Makes me wonder how much carbon is build up in the ring lands? To see any sludge at 100,000 miles, in my opinion, is unacceptable.
 
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Take a close look at the fastener heads on the springs and the front cover near the timing chains. Logs of sludge build up. Makes me wonder how much carbon is build up in the ring lands? To see any sludge at 100,000 miles, in my opinion, is unacceptable.

ACEA C3 lubricants are robust, so the sludge must be due to the extended OCIs in a GDI engine.
 
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Didn't know. Why aren't they using the C3 version?
At the time, sulfur levels in US fuels were higher, which deplete TBN quicker. So mid-SAPS oil not good for the long drain intervals used by BMW (15k miles).
 
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At the time, sulfur levels in US fuels were higher, which deplete TBN quicker. So mid-SAPS oil not good for the long drain intervals used by BMW (15k miles).
Are they still using ACEA A3/B4 lubes at BMW dealerships today, or have they moved on to low/mid-SAPS oils?
 
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To repeat:
My son had a 2009 328i prior to picking up a 2018 330i xDrive . The car had been run on BMW TPT 5W-30 or BMW TPT 0W-30 since new- with a minimum OCI of 15,000 miles/12 months; here's what it looked like at 108,000 miles:
View attachment 88743
My n52 engine also looks like this after 240k miles on 15k ocis.
My experience is that most engines that are full of sludge are engines that are only used on short distance/city driving or verry slow drivers.

Back on topic. No dont use detergents. Good oils have their own detergents and as you said the engine is fine.
 
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My n52 engine also looks like this after 240k miles on 15k ocis.
My experience is that most engines that are full of sludge are engines that are only used on short distance/city driving or verry slow drivers.

Back on topic. No dont use detergents. Good oils have their own detergents and as you said the engine is fine.

Detergents in engine oil are there to hold 'dirt' in suspension. Not to clean.

Does this car in question need a flush? No.
Would flushing this engine hurt it or do any damage? No.

If it was mine I'd try substituting a litre/quart of oil with some of the HPL engine cleaner for a 3000m oci and then carry on.
 
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Detergents in engine oil are there to hold 'dirt' in suspension. Not to clean.

Does this car in question need a flush? No.
Would flushing this engine hurt it or do any damage? No.

If it was mine I'd try substituting a litre/quart of oil with some of the HPL engine cleaner for a 3000m oci and then carry on.
Good oils have sufficient cleaning additives to keep the engine clean and do clean it especially on long drives/commutes. Useally its not like an 500k engine is always dirtier then an 100k engine because the oils never cleaned it. An engine is not like a trap that just sludges full and then you have to buy a new car.

No oem manufacturer or large oil company (that does not make cleaners) every advised to use cleaners. Only the companies that sell/make them.
 
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Good oils have sufficient cleaning additives to keep the engine clean and do clean it especially on long drives/commutes. Useally its not like an 500k engine is always dirtier then an 100k engine because the oils never cleaned it. An engine is not like a trap that just sludges full and then you have to buy a new car.

No oem manufacturer or large oil company (that does not make cleaners) every advised to use cleaners. Only the companies that sell/make them.

But from years of reading on here, I've been led to believe that detergents in the engine oil play the roll of capturing contaminents and holding them in suspension with the oil. Which, will keep things clean unless you exceed the oils capabilities.
 

OVERKILL

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Good oils have sufficient cleaning additives to keep the engine clean and do clean it especially on long drives/commutes. Useally its not like an 500k engine is always dirtier then an 100k engine because the oils never cleaned it. An engine is not like a trap that just sludges full and then you have to buy a new car.

No oem manufacturer or large oil company (that does not make cleaners) every advised to use cleaners. Only the companies that sell/make them.
Oils are not cleaners. The purpose of detergents and dispersants are to neutralize acids and other contaminants and hold these things in suspension so that they don't plate-out. They are then removed from the engine during an oil change. This is why you'll note that marketing material speaks of keeping things clean, rather than cleaning. Once an engine has deposits, removing them is typically beyond the capability of your average oil.

Now, there have been a few oils that have claimed to be able to do some cleaning. Mobil 1 0w-40 is one of them. Esters are typically used to perform this task, and it takes substantial time to happen with the concentration found in an oil like that one. That's of course why it is far better to avoid laying down those deposits in the first place, which is what a quality product changed at a sane interval will achieve.
 

OVERKILL

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But from years of reading on here, I've been led to believe that detergents in the engine oil play the roll of capturing contaminents and holding them in suspension with the oil. Which, will keep things clean unless you exceed the oils capabilities.
That's correct.
 
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