Synthetic oil recommendations... - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
3-Series (E36) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1992-1999. Autodoodad Specific models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318iS/ti, BMW 320, BMW 323, BMW 320, BMW 324, BMW 325, BMW 328.

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#1 (permalink) Old 08-02-2004, 10:05 PM
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My 318i has about 78K on it. My mechanic did a full check on the engine, and found it to be very clean. As a result, he suggested that I start using a synthetic oil, 20W50, because of the high temps here in northern Alabama.

Here's my question...I have reseasrched the issue, and AMSOIL is very highly rated by what appear to be independent tests. My mechanic has had limited experience with AMSOIL, but says that his experiences have been that AMSOIL works well in new cars, but not so well in cars with mileage where mine is.

What recommendations would you have for oil choices? He recommended Mobil 1 SuperSyn, but they don't carry a 20W50 grade. Help is appreciated...
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#2 (permalink) Old 08-02-2004, 10:52 PM
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i jus switched from regular to synthetic today.... i have a 92 and its got 76K on it... a lot of people recommended mobil 1 to me.. also redline comes highly recommended also.. i wuz gonna go with redline but couldn't find any local distributors... but mobil 1 is just as good if not better...
n the best part is I got the oil changed and the lights reset for only $15 for labor... i provided the parts... yeeehaaaa..

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#3 (permalink) Old 08-02-2004, 11:01 PM
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Mobil Drive Clean Plus Synthetic Oil info for new and high mileage cars: http://www.industrialnewsroom.com/fullstory/21141
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#4 (permalink) Old 08-02-2004, 11:26 PM
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Go for the 15w 50 from Mobil 1.

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#5 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 01:59 AM
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Two of our club guys here did it and eventually had to overhaul their engines. I can get the specifics if you need them..

Synthetic is not supposed to be used in the BMW's.
I have used syn's in a lot of my cars but I will not use it in my Beemer.

Sold my 1995 BMW 318is 5spd Boston Green

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#6 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 05:42 AM
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Get specifics... cause if I'm not mistaken... newer BMWs come with synthetic.


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#7 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 10:15 AM
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Amsoil is actually one of the only true synthetic oils around. Moble 1 for instance is not a true full synthetic. They use the crude base and add synthetic additives and use the crude base to suspend the additives in. Amsoil is 100% synthetic. From everything that I have read, and from what I heard from an Amsoil rep at a BMW car show. He said that Amsoil was 100% safe for any engine, including the old school BMW 2002s. People say that they get oil leaks after switching to synthetic. That is because the sediments in the crude oil (base or true old school oil) gets stuck in the leaks. When you switch to synthetic it gets all of the gunk from the old oil out, opening up those leaks. That is the only downside. But it does improve the life of your engine, becuase it gets all that crap out of there, and is a lot lot cleaner. Even though it's about $60 for 5 qts of Amsoil, it is 100% safe for 25k miles.

edit: I still use Castrol GTX
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#8 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 10:29 AM
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Motul Synthetic Ester 15W50 competition is better than anything else you can get. At $20 / L you can't go wrong. Their regular synthetic is $14 / L. I use this stuff for track driving days.

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#9 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 10:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jimwww@Aug 3 2004, 02:39 AM
Two of our club guys here did it and eventually had to overhaul their engines. I can get the specifics if you need them..

Synthetic is not supposed to be used in the BMW's.
I have used syn's in a lot of my cars but I will not use it in my Beemer.
New to this forum, my first post.

I've just gone to 15w 50w Mobile one on my 97 M3. I've allways ran Castrol 20 50
here in San Diego on all my Bimmers for 20 years. 88000 on this engin runs like a top. Seems to use less oil and run better.

But now I admit you've got me alittle spooked.

Do you have any other info on potential damage from going to Mobil 1.

Thanks...
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#10 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 10:52 AM
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I will get the specifics guys.. but even a premier dealership for BMW here will not put in synthetic. Two of the clubs guys and the dealer have claimed it was because of the synthetic oil. I was at a club meet at the dealer when I found out about this.

I will ask them to give me specific details and then u guys can decide.

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#11 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by jimwww@Aug 3 2004, 02:39 AM
Two of our club guys here did it and eventually had to overhaul their engines.
I went through this on an Acura Integra in the 90's. Any mechanic will tell you not to switch a car from regular to synthetic oil once the car has some miles on it. I switched at 45K and had to rebuild at 90K. Even Honda reliability couldn't save me because I foolishly thought I was "helping" the engine by switching. Do some research into this subject. Mobil 1 was the subject of a class action suit in the 90's and I beleive the explaination I found was from that case. Here's how it goes according to my memory:

Regular oil creates sludge due to poor quality, contaminants, or extreme use which effectively blocks the flow of oil from reaching seals. Over time the seals get dry and brittle. Leaks don't appear because the sludge has formed a barrier which lessens the burden on the seal. Synthetic oil will remove the sludge and leave the seal exposed again and you begin to get leaks.

My advice: Buy good regular oil and change it according to the maintenance schedule. Synthetic doesn't always mean better (research this and you'll be shocked)! As others pointed out, "Synthetic" is most often Semi-Synthetic.

As an aside: Synthetic oil does not allow you to deviate the maintenance schedule. If Amsoil is advertising 25K miles on their oil they must mean in a vacuum which is completely free of contaminates. In the real world Synthetic only nets you better protection not a longer maintenance interval.
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#12 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 11:01 AM
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Actually, yes they do. I was at the local BMW dealer the other day, and I saw a tech dumping Mobil1 synthetic in an e46.

I recently switched to Redline Fully Synthetic 10W-40 after speaking with numerous BMW techs. I have developed no leaks, and have actually noticed a smoother idle (which I thought not possible), and a cooler running engine.

If Redline (or any other high quality synthetic) were so bad for your car, why would Turnermotorsports use it in all there BMW racecars?

{Redline Oil}

BTW, yes sludge is removed by synthetic oil due to the addition of various detergents contained within it. But it doesn't matter. A good fully synthetic motor oil not only provides superior lubrication for the metal parts but rubber as well.

And yes synthetic does mean you can deviate from the standard "every 3K miles" routine. Redline oil doesn't break down near as fast. It is rated at 17K miles. The only reason you wouldn't wait this long would be because of the contaminants in the oil. This can all be confirmed in the above link.

I plan on changing my oil every 9Kmiles and the filter every 4.5K.

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#13 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 02:04 PM
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Thanks for the news flash. I've been using Red Line in motorcycle racing applications for a few years and am very happy with the results. Great product and tops in all the industry testing figures I've seen.

I surely shouldn't speak for every mechanic in the world but I stand by my statements.
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#14 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Synthetic is not supposed to be used in the BMW's.
That's just plain not true!

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#15 (permalink) Old 08-03-2004, 02:43 PM
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Thanks for the input guys. I think I'm clear if I want to run synthetic then the best choice is Redline?
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