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5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

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#1 (permalink) Old 10-07-2005, 03:31 AM
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best motor oil

what do u guys think the best motor oil would be for an E34. meaning, best performance and engine care. is Mobil One good?
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#2 (permalink) Old 10-07-2005, 03:33 AM
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To be honest aside from aditives, the difference isn't much between brands at all.

I noticed you mentioned Mobile One which is a fully synthetic oil. Be careful if your car has never had synthetic before - you'll have little leaks everywhere until you replace some seals. It's really not that big of a deal, but it's annoying.

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#3 (permalink) Old 10-07-2005, 02:59 PM
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yeah, but i was wondering who which company leads is those small differences. i will most likely not notice the difference anyways lol. i should probobly get the oil that comes in the prettiest box
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#4 (permalink) Old 10-07-2005, 03:25 PM
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All the oils go through the same testing/rating ... there is a minimum rating they have to have in order to be sold ... therefore, there isn't much difference.

I use Penzoil right now ... I have used Valvoline, Castrol ... never noticed any difference.

As long as you change it often, any brand name oil is good.

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#5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2005, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dyami
what do u guys think the best motor oil would be for an E34. meaning, best performance and engine care. is Mobil One good?
I use the BMW Synthetic oil....5W-30.....works fine...the extra $$? Gets an offset by the extra miles I pull out of it !

regards
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#6 (permalink) Old 10-08-2005, 01:22 AM
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I envy the people that use synthetic.

I would use synthetic too, but I fear the leaks ... I don't have any records of it being used before. I have changed crankshaft and camshaft seals anyhow, but I fear it's gonna start leaking somewhere else like the rear seal or the oil pan, and I really can't afford the parts/work and more importantly down time right now.

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#7 (permalink) Old 10-08-2005, 01:30 AM
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I was told that switchin back from synthetic causes leaks. It seems to be true because I have no leaks
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#8 (permalink) Old 10-08-2005, 09:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torque
I envy the people that use synthetic.

I would use synthetic too, but I fear the leaks ... I don't have any records of it being used before. I have changed crankshaft and camshaft seals anyhow, but I fear it's gonna start leaking somewhere else like the rear seal or the oil pan, and I really can't afford the parts/work and more importantly down time right now.
Fair is Fair...Torque? I do agree with you.

Accept my best regards please!
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#9 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:23 AM
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Hey Bill -

I just changed my oil and decided to exercise my BMWCCA discount at my local dealer and get the oil & filter there (turns out it's under $4.00 per quart for BMW Longlife 5w-30). Anyway, my question/observation is regarding the color of the oil. Instead of a nice light amber color (like Mobil-1 or Syntec), it looks already dark, like Cola, or like it already has about 1500 miles on it. Do you know what the deal is with that? And I thought 5W-40 is what I should be using (central Virginia, 119K miles, '99 540), but the dealer insisted on 5W-30. Any thoughts?

Also, if one forgets to replace that little trap door that provides access to the oil pan drain bolt, it's next to impossible to replace once the car is back on flat level ground. I'm going to have to drive it back up on the ramps again!

Finally - Torque, I agree with your observation - once your engine develops an "appetite" for non-synthetic, it's tough to switch to synthetic. In addition to increased potential for leaks, I've noticed excessive oil consumption being another side effect (on an old Datsun pick I once had).

<span style='colorurple'>Eric S.</span>
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#10 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 06:42 PM
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How would i know if my car had synthetic oil before? would it be a difference in thickness or color?
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#11 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dyami
How would i know if my car had synthetic oil before? would it be a difference in thickness or color?
Ex owner for one, the dealer if known, or service record in the vehicle if any.....A friend of mine did a search on his VIN....got a name and a contact on the ex owner...called in for info. and got it !!
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#12 (permalink) Old 10-10-2005, 07:48 PM
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Hi Eric

This is what I think....but the following is my own thought and is open further discussions and debates:

1. When BMW dealers say motor oil does not need to be changed for a long time...while at it, think about this LIFE-TIME BIBLICAL belief about the transmission fluid...I tend to question the definition of "life-time" or "long-life" . Let us be realistic here: Is the life span of a GM tranny like mine or a Getrang is really 400.000? 300.000? 200.000? or 150k-170k is more like it?

Logically? the last number makes more sense to me...and yes I'll allow for some exceptions here and there....why not? Chevy or a Ford tranny MAY last 200k too.......Transmission manufacturers do make money selling us rebuilt trannies so I expect a shorter life span of fluids if not trannies anyway......Thus my main concern is how often I dump that dirty fluid out of my tranny....regardless of whatever eternal life it has!

2. I always ask myself the following questions:

A. With many documented transmission failures how many could have been avoided had we forgot about this LIFE-TIME deal and change it regularly??!

B. How many people did change their tranny due to failures prior to reaching the 150k landmark?

C. You remember when my car got flooded....when I changed the engine, the tranny --WELL THE LIFE-TIME-- was missing one QT +...after adding it, the early morning delay in shifting did disappear? Any relation? I think so!

3. Yes synthetic oil is darker in color--probably due to different chemical composition/additives etc-- and has extended oil change intervals as a cost saving measure; but AGAIN it all depends on my driving conditions, long/short trips, stop and go, and age of the motor itself. Doesn't MPG deal sounds familiar now? At the very least they come up with these numbers UNDER very ideal driving conditions which I can't even get close to it in NYC traffic !

For better or worse at the end of day? I hear something like this from Mobil:
" A fully synthetic motor oil, Mobil 10W-40 with SuperSyn Technology exceeds industry standards and the major leading builder requirements, enabling the product to keep performing well after conventional oils cannot. Mobil 1 is recommended by leading car manufacturers as initial fill ".

Then my BMW dealer gets all upset at it and say: hey Bill this a TV commercial; take my advise and get the 5W-30....you my friend and we do know what is best for our car.......!!

While I am sticking with the dark BMW synthetic deal....Can you figure it out?

Pleasure to hear from you Eric

Please accept my best regards
billb

Last edited by billB; 10-10-2005 at 07:54 PM.
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#13 (permalink) Old 10-14-2005, 11:41 PM
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I have never heard of a car springing leaks by changing to synthetic oil. No disrespect - I have NEVER heard this.

If you wan the very best, use Amsoil 5w 40 European Formula. If you want it at cost, I can hook you up since I am a preferred customer and thinking about becoming a dealer.

Amsoil was THE company that invented synthetic oil, nothing else comes close to the performance of Amsoil. I can't belive this has not been mentioned in the earlier post.

Go to their website: www.amsoil.com

Oil is a very debatable topic on most forums I frequent. But Amsoil is the only company that GUARNTEES IN WRITING extended oil service intervals of 15,000 miles or more.

I own a motorcycle in addition to my 528. The best thing I ever put into my scoot was 10W40 Amsoil as motorcycles are very tough on oil. About 90% of the folks I ride with use nothing but Amsoil in their motorcycles and their cars.

Last edited by ozarkmark; 10-14-2005 at 11:47 PM.
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#14 (permalink) Old 10-15-2005, 02:07 PM
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Well - many people on these boards who have made the switch have had leaks, etc.

The thing is - it would be ok on a lowe(r) mileage vehicle, but basically - it makes an already-existant but likely-unknown problem known. The synthetic can penetrate old / faulty seals and leak out. If your seal is old, breaking, etc but not quite leaking YET - it WILL leak with synth. A Healthy seal / gasket, etc won't let this happen, though.

When I mentioned this above, I was speaking GENERALLY - since most members here have fairly high mileage.

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#15 (permalink) Old 10-15-2005, 04:46 PM
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Just for the record: I would be scared to keep oil in my car for 15,000 miles without changing it, regardless of what it is or who makes it.

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