Oil consumption '06 BMW 530, when does the light come on?

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So my mom has this new 2006 BMW 530. Free maintenance and 15k is the reccomended OCI. The car is on its second OCI. The oil light came on about halfway thru this OCI, she calls the dealer and they tell her to "top it off". Well let's say my mother isn't exactly a mechanic. So she calls me. I don't live nearby so I tell her to talk to the dealer and let them handle it. She takes it in and they top it off. How low does the oil get before the oil light comes on? 2 quarts maybe? This is a new car, right? So how is supposed to make it to a 15k OCI if its comsuming so much oil? The type of people that usually buy this kind of car, my mother, don't keep cars for 200k and they don't check their oil. That's why they lease cars and pay dealers for "free" maintenance up front. They advertise the car to have "convienent maintenance" with 15k OCI. Not exactly conveinent if it consumes oil. Well she leased it, probably a good thing.
 
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What kind of oil light? A standard oil light is low oil pressure. When this comes on you are supposed to turn off the engine immediately. The oil pressure is only 4 to 7 psi when this unit is triggered. Not enough to float the bearings and continued use with this light triggered results in severe wear. Now some auto manufactures do use a low oil level light also, but I'm not aware of BMW doing so.
quote:
So how is supposed to make it to a 15k OCI if its comsuming so much oil?
15K OCI, does not mean... do not check engine oil level.
 

Huhwhye

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I don't know what exactly the light looked like but it said something about oil and "take to dealer" (second hand report from Mom) Other than that all I know is what I stated above. I've only seen that car once since she leased it so I don't know much about it. The dealer did add oil when she took it in. I just don't want my mother stranded in the desert because her BMW blew up. She does a lot of travelling. Yeah you are right about checking the oil, but practically speaking not all corporate executives that lease BMWs check their oil. Maybe they should, but they don't. And I would expect that BMW knows who their customer base is. Remember, BMW is the one making the claim their cars have "convienent" maintenance and free maintenance to attract people like my mom. I don't think any new car should consume oil. But that's me. [I dont know] My oil level doesn't move during an OCI, but I check it anyway. But that's me, and that's why I'm on BITOG.
 
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my 95 bmw 525i and I believe newer bmws have a "low oil" indicator that is activated when you are one quart or so low. IMO, if it used one quart during the first 20,000 miles or so, I would make them check the car out. It may be leaking oil or burning oil. either way, I think there is a mechanical malfuntcion. Personally, I think the free maintenance is really "minmal" maintenance. I believe items like oil/filter changes, trany oil/filter and differential oil changes should be done twice as often as the factory indicates, especially if you want the car to last. Just my opinion.
 
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Somebody needs to read his or her manual -- especially regarding routine fluid level checks. A long OCI and long service intervals DO NOT imply that routine fluid checks and safety checks (brakes!) need not to be performed.
 
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If it's a yellow oil light that comes on for a while after the car is started, then that's the low oil indicator. I believe it comes on after the car is down 1 Litre. Please do oil changes on this car when your oil indicator reads 7500 miles (the 15k miles the indicator calls for is just too high in my view). Check out the back of the owners manual. There's a place for an intermediate oil change between the 15k mile OCI's. They're pretty much telling you that you should do it, but they won't pay for it. Just my opinion. Oh yeah...german castrol is good for this engine, so's mobil 1 0w-40.
 

Huhwhye

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1 quart low is not too bad. So probably no damage. But still shouldn't happen. Mori, you are right. But not everyone is like you and me. The average person is pretty adverse to popping the hood. That is reality. And you are not going to convince my mom or people like her to check fluids periodically. Just not going to happen. There is nothing anyone can say or do about that. IMO, shouldn't tell people the car goes 15k if it shouldn't, and shouldn't say maintanence is included if it isn't. Because people like my mom buy a lot of cars. More than people like us. BMW is agressively marketing their products to people in this way. I hear the adds daily on the radio, and see them all the time on the tube. Like I said, I'm glad she leased her car.
 
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It's a low level indicator light.. I don't think the new Bimmers even have a dipstick. The oil level is electronically monitored. Nothing wrong with the 15k interval if it's a lease top it off with a quart of HDEO and forget about it. If you are going to keep the car long term do a uoa after 7500 miles and change if the results make you uncomfortable with the results at that point. Your mother will not be stranded in her Bimmer I assure you..If it's anything like mine she has a wrench button to push to summon help if broken down. The unfortunate thing is I leased ourd for my wife and she doesn't like to drive it.. too impractcical.
 
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Bryanccfshr This lease vs own with different maintenance/attitude schedules is the reason I may never buy another used BMW. Be afraid, be very afraid, IMO, they will be worn out much quicker due to being under maintained by the the leasing person. Unfortunately, the driver thinks they are caring for the car properly as they follow BMW's schedule. I suspect a 3 year off lease car (any car)will require a bit of research to determine quality. I will start by looking at cars owned and not leased if I even consider a 2003 and newer used BMW. Just my opinion.
 
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I have my 2004 for sale FYI.. The oil was changed at 7500 and with a little over 12k on the clock it will be changed again soon. But I am a BITOGer and despite how much a report to abuse it I have alot of respect for fine machinery if I plan to keep it or not. You do have a point however that the average leaser is going to follow the minimum provided maintenance. But for a 3 or 4 year lease period unless alot of miles are put on I just don't think it's the end of the world. The reason I am hesitant to purchase a BMW for long term ownership has alot more to do with the maintenance,service & parts cost after the warranty period than with the factoy recomended intervals. Which really are not that bad if the oil level is checked every 3 months or so. The car will let you know if you are low on air in a tire and the worst problem mine has had has been the dinky cupholders. (Geramn cars just aren't made to hold a 44oz cup, better priorities). Reliability wise this car has been trouble free with no warranty issues other than those broken cup holders [Wink]
 
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This discussion begs the question why BMW elliminated the engine oil dipstick. To prevent a prospective heads-up, off-lease buyer from performing even a cursory check of the visual condition of the engine oil? Is this development a worldwide phenomenon, or are the Bavarians specifically targeting Americans as automotive untermenschen? If so, they've researched their target lessees very well. [ March 14, 2006, 05:26 PM: Message edited by: Ray H ]
 
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If it doesn't have a dipstick, does it have an oil level display? If there's no means of checking the oil level, I'd pass on buying the car.
 
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Moribundman, They have an oil level indicator. If you go to this BMW Link and click on the "everything under control" and then on the "Settings" Film (sorry I can't link directly to the Java link). It will describe the procedure for checking the oil level. Actually it's not a bad idea for people who are allergic to the hood latch.
 
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Haha don't yell at us! The e60 bimmers don't need the dipstick.. We now have "idrive." It's pretty kick ***, but those who are more DIY hate it. I have noticed that the newer bimmers are gone away more the performance minded 80's and 90's and are now going to the luxury side like mercedes and audi. This is really sad coming from a guy that loves his older german cars and DTM.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by ZeroDynamic: Haha don't yell at us! The e60 bimmers don't need the dipstick.. We now have "idrive." It's pretty kick ***, but those who are more DIY hate it. I have noticed that the newer bimmers are gone away more the performance minded 80's and 90's and are now going to the luxury side like mercedes and audi. This is really sad coming from a guy that loves his older german cars and DTM.
For the original question, she can buy a quart of BMW 5w30 oil from the dealer for $5 which they will use on her oil changes also. BMW's can drink a bit of oil over a 15k mile oil change interval so it's nothing to worry about. Some models even allow up to 1 quart per 1,000 miles! I was sort of worried too about BMW becoming soft but the new MZ4 coupe and roadster and M5/M6 have showed me they aren't done yet. From what I have heard the E60 M5 handles and drives much better than the E39 M5. I have driven the E39 M5 which was impressive but the new M5 sounds like a beast! The E60 M5 weighs 4012 lbs. which was right in the same area of the E39. Plus a V10 that winds out to 8,250 rpms sounds enticing [Smile] I'm just disappointed with the new E90 3-series. The interior is far from ergonomic and is downright ugly!
 
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Gentlemen, I don't care how nice the driving experience is, I will not buy a car without a dip stick. [No no] That is just flat out ridiculous. [Roll Eyes]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by GoldenRod: Gentlemen, I don't care how nice the driving experience is, I will not buy a car without a dip stick. [No no] That is just flat out ridiculous. [Roll Eyes]
Unfortunately a handful of premium brand cars have already gone that route and I would imagine it won't take long for that technology to trickle down to the less expensive brands.
 
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Russell........IMO, if it used one quart during the first 20,000 miles or so, I would make them check the car out. It may be leaking oil or burning oil. either way, I think there is a mechanical malfunction. Oh my *** This is indeed some abnormal oil consumption !!!! Sue BMW; Sue the dealer; Sue the oil company; sue OPEC; Sue BITOG !!! No car engine should consume a molecule of oil for 100,000 miles ! Which is what the OCI should be... Seriously, I would avoid a leased car at all costs, when buying used ;I had no idea they were so poorly serviced. I guess as long as the car survives the two year lease - that all that matters....
 
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