1997 528i - What Oil To Use? - BMW Forum - BimmerWerkz.com
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#1 (permalink) Old 03-07-2005, 09:34 AM
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I just wanted to get some educated opinions on the kind of oil I should be putting into my 1997 528i. I am a very amateur do it yourselfer, although I've done a few things now, including changing out my rear brake pads/rotors.. So, this weekend, it was time for my first oil change on my 97 BMW 528i that I got last October. I've put about 3800 miles on it and it now has 89,000 miles. So, when I check with my Bentley's manual, it says to put 15w-40 oil. I also checked the prior service records with the dealer and I found that this car has never had synthetic oil in it. So, I figure I will just stick with the regular stuff. I head out to the auto parts store and lo and behold, there is no 15w-40 on the shelf. I ask at the counter and they tell me its not very popular and they don't keep in in the store aisles. But, they did have it in stock in the back of the store and I do end up getting 7 quarts of Penzoil 15w-40. THey tell me its a very 'heavy duty' oil.

So, I go ahead and change my oil. But, now I"m getting second thoughts. Is this the right oil? Do I have anything to worry about? My engine and car is in excellent shape. Doesn't burn a drop as far as I can tell. Should I switch to Synthetic? Or, should I be using a different weight such as 20w-50?

Any feedback on this would be most appreciated!
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#2 (permalink) Old 03-07-2005, 10:17 AM
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you should be OK with synthetic... what is the average temp in the summer and winter?

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#3 (permalink) Old 03-07-2005, 10:32 AM
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I'm in Atlanta - so we can get down into the 20's in the Winter (but average is 30's/40s at night). Summer's average in the 80's as the high, but we can get 90's for sure as the high for several days.
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#4 (permalink) Old 03-07-2005, 05:34 PM
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I'm in Atlanta too, and run 10w-40year round.

I get a little noise on top, which may be the VANOS unit, I'm not sure. It doesn't smoke or burn any oil, and runs like a top. I've thought that 20-50 might quiet it down some, but I don't want to screw with it since the motor seems tight enough for the lighter weight.

Also, the difference between 10w and 15w is really a non issue. If you look at a temp chart, you get a few more degrees on the bottom end w/ 10w, but it's the 40 that you really care about and that doesn't change, regardless of the winterization.

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#5 (permalink) Old 03-07-2005, 09:11 PM
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On the older V8's we use the BMW 15 w40 Long Life Oil. I would probably stick to what the vehicle has had all along if it has worked for you so far (which it sounds like it has)

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