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Low Oil, Handy Manual - 2015 BMW M235i Convertible Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Posts: 10,059
edited November 2015 in BMW
imageLow Oil, Handy Manual - 2015 BMW M235i Convertible Long-Term Road Test

Our 2015 BMW M235i lets you know its low on oil, then offers a few suggestions on what to do about it.

Read the full story here


Comments

  • BMW specific oil? Oh geez. No thanks.
  • ebeaudoinebeaudoin NE IllinoisPosts: 509
    Quite a selection of oil options! What oil are you guys using in it?
  • Those oils are not that tough to find. Are fluid levels periodically checked on these cars? You know...when the tire pressures are checked - ? Oh, wait...
  • By the way, there is no dipstick in this car
  • barich1barich1 Posts: 143
    I've never owned a car that didn't have 150k+ miles on it before it started needing oil between changes. This seems typical for German brands. Why?
  • allthingshondaallthingshonda Posts: 878
    edited November 2015
    More concerning is that it needs oil. And before people comment on the fact that it's turbocharged remember the F-150 also has a turbo and a smaller engine and is heavier and tows; yet it went between oil changes with 1 gallon to much oil. Didn't even burn the excess oil. I've owned quite a few cars over the years and none of them needed oil between changes. My Acura goes 10,000 miles between changes and stays at the full mark the entire time and has over 150,000 miles on it.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 4,990
    Needing to add some oil between changes is normal and when it comes to choosing what to add you have a lot more options than you do when it comes to doing an oil change. What people should be noticing is that BMW is allowing API SM. to top off. That is Okay for that use but for an oil change it is an inappropriate choice. Look for products that display "European Formula" on the front of the bottle and grades such as SAE 0W30, 0W40, 5W40, and 5W30. Then when you look at the back of the bottle you should see that it has ACEA A3/B3 A3/B4 approvals. Then when you read the finer print you will find that it will usually also have BMW's LL-01 approval and would be the correct choice.

    You don't need BMW's oil, but you do need to meet their specifications and every product on the parts store shelf doesn't do that. In fact, if you see GM's dexos label on the front of the bottle that means it would be the wrong choice no matter what is stated on the back of the bottle.
  • Never understood why some, mostly German, manufacturers require their own type of formula. Why can't they design their engines to use readily available synthetic oil like Mobil One? Once again the Ford F-150's little twin turbo 2.7 liter engine doesn't use a drop of oil between changes and manages to do it on regular old 5W30 synthetic blend. Not even fully synthetic. And if anybody tries to tell me that BMW engines are better engineered and more advanced than Ford's engine I remind you that the Ford engine is putting out 120 horses per liter and 139 lb/ft of torque per liter. BMW's 3.0 does 106 horses per liter and 110 lb/ft per liter. Advantage Ford
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Don't get us started, LOL.

    (Did you see the dexos reference above?)
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,098
    You can pick up Mobil 1 0W-40 at Walmart for cheap all day long, so using the correct oil is not even remotely an issue for my Bimmers.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 4,990
    stever said:


    (Did you see the dexos reference above?)

    Better question, do you understand the significance of its mention in the context of this thread?

  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited November 2015
    Yeah, the manufacturer wants you to use their own brand of oil ($$$) but then they go on to say the aftermarket stuff is fine. They probably got the Magnusson-Moss tie-in refresher notice from the FTC a few months back and are trying to cover themselves.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 4,990
    edited November 2015
    stever said:

    Yeah, the manufacturer wants you to use their own brand of oil ($$$) but then they go on to say the aftermarket stuff is fine. They probably got the Magnusson-Moss tie-in refresher notice from the FTC a few months back and are trying to cover themselves.

    Thanks, that's what I thought.

    Any oil that is approved for the GM dexos specification DOES NOT meet the European specifications. Any oil approved for the European specifications likewise DOES NOT meet the GM dexos (and Ford, etc.) specifications.

    Lets simplify this. ACEA A1/B1 and ACEA A5/B5 are the low HTHS specification products that meet the North American and Asian vehicle specifications. ACEA A3/B3, ACEA A3/B4 are high HTHS specification products and meet the European specifications. Those two groups are completely different with GM's dexos in the A1/B1, A5/B5 and BMW's LL-01 in the A3/B3. Consumers don't need to choose OEM brands, but they must still choose products that meet their vehicle's specs.

    Magnusson Moss does not make it OK for a consumer to use products that don't meet their vehicle specifications and every effort should be made to help the consumers choose correctly. An example would be where a product is licensed as approved for the dexos specification and has the certification label on the front of the bottle correctly, but the on the back of the bottle makes statements like "recommended for ACEA A3/B3" and BMW LL-01. That is a misleading claim by that oil company because the two specs are completely different, one product cannot meet both specifications. This has noting to do with a vehicle manufacturers brand and you have been shown that a number of times. The repeated attempts to blur the line between specifications and brands fails to serve the readers and consumers alike. It doesn't sit well to allow some oil companies to misrepresent some of their products to the consumers.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited November 2015
    Don't get us started, LOL.

    Going back to the article:

    "And if none of these are available, "up to 1 US quart/liter of an oil with the following specification can be added: SAE 0W-40, SAE0W-30, SAE 5W-40 or SAE 5W-30."

    So, non-spec oil is bad unless you are topping up, in which case anything is okay. Uh-huh.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 4,990
    edited November 2015
    stever said:

    Going back to the article:

    "And if none of these are available, "up to 1 US quart/liter of an oil with the following specification can be added: SAE 0W-40, SAE0W-30, SAE 5W-40 or SAE 5W-30."

    So, non-spec oil is bad unless you are topping up, in which case anything is okay. Uh-huh.

    More like anything is better than not enough. Meanwhile three of those are very likely to meet the spec, its only the 5W30 category that is more likely to not meet it for the BMW.

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