04 Aug Routine Oil Changes: An Important Part of BMW Maintenance
Part of maintaining the uncompromising standards of a BMW engine is conducting regularly-scheduled oil changes. Motor oil serves to lubricate the many rapid moving parts of an engine. It rids the engine of foreign debris and keeps it cool by absorbing the excess heat it produces.
Each of these functions is integral in sustaining the peak performance of a BMW engine. Failure to consistently provide your engine with sufficient oil can result in costly auto repairs.
Potential Damage from Old or Low-Level Engine Oil
Unfortunately, there are multiple risks presented by either a lack of oil or old, dirty oil. Even if the oil is at acceptable levels, it may have gone too long without changing and has been polluted by the normal buildup of dirt.
In some cases old oil damage can be mild, such as leaks which can occur due to oil pan debris. If you’re only a few hundred miles overdue, you may not even notice the gradual wear and tear being done.
As you continue to put more miles on your vehicle, past the point of the recommended change, and the oil levels bottom-out, this gradual process becomes increasingly faster and is exacerbated by the lack of lubrication. In some instances, this may result in catastrophic engine damage.
Tainted oil will take longer to do this level of damage, as the oil filters deal with much of the dirt as it comes in. Yet, this is a problem that only worsens with time. If oil filters are not replaced along with the oil, they will stop functioning completely, and the oil will become dirty again. This also can ultimately result in irreparable damage to your car and more money out of your pocket.
Oil and filter changes are inexpensive routine maintenance which can save you hundreds to thousands of dollars in the long run.
When to Change Oil
Fortunately for the average driver, BMWs can function properly on a fresh change of oil for around 5,000 to 10,000 miles, about half a year to a year depending on your driving habits. While all cars are equipped with a check oil light, this indicator should be viewed more as a last resort than a surefire guide on when to change your oil. Remember, oil can become old even if you don’t drive the vehicle much.
Many newer BMW models are afforded more sophisticated and detailed oil monitoring systems known as Condition Based Servicing. This CBS technology allows for more engine functions and conditions to be monitored and considered as a whole, information the CBS can use to calculate roughly how much oil life remains.
If you find yourself without one of these more intelligent systems, there are multiple other indicators that can be easily measured at home:
- Older BMW models are equipped with dipsticks to measure the amount of oil remaining.
- You can also monitor the viscosity of the oil. Over time the oil begins to thin causing it to be less lubricating.
- Along these same lines, the color of your vehicle’s oil will darken as more dirt and debris clog the filter and build up within the engine.
- Gasoline-fueled cars should only emit colorless exhaust. If you notice the exhaust from your vehicle taking on a blue tint, there may be seepage and a decrease in oil levels.
- Other signs that your oil is in need of change may include strange noises like grinding or knocking and/or the scent of oil within the vehicle.
Type of Oil Needed for BMWs
While there are certainly a variety of oils that will work fine within a BMW engine, BMW has recommended Pennzoil Synthetic Motor Oil since 2015, the cost of which is significantly less than unnecessary engine repairs. Of course, you should always plan on first consulting with a BMW service expert before selecting an oil for your specific model.
Shores Automotive Will Help
BMW strives to craft technologically-superior and longer lasting cars, and at Shores Automotive, we understand how to give these cars the care needed to make that goal a reality. We’ve been a family-owned staple of the Florida auto repairs industry for decades. We are trusted by drivers in Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Highland Beach, Deerfield Beach, Lighthouse Point, FL and surrounding areas. We will provide your car with the service it deserves. Give us a call or come in today to speak to our trusted experts.