E46 BMW Social Directory E46 FAQ 3-Series Discussion Forums BMW Photo Gallery BMW 3-Series Technical Information E46 Fanatics - The Ultimate BMW Resource BMW Vendors General E46 Forum The Tire Rack's Tire Wheel Forum Forced Induction Forum The Off-Topic The E46 BMW Showroom For Sale, For Trade or Wanting to Buy

Welcome to the E46Fanatics forums. E46Fanatics is the premiere website for BMW 3 series owners around the world with interactive forums, a geographical enthusiast directory, photo galleries, and technical information for BMW enthusiasts.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact us.

Go Back   E46Fanatics > E46 BMW > General E46 Forum

General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 11-09-2012, 02:28 PM   #1
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Serious Oil Consumption Issue *RESOLVED 3/29/13*

Bought a 2002 325i about 4 months ago. I drive approximately 400 miles to and from work on a weekly basis. Around the 350 mile mark, my low oil light comes on and I have to add 2 quarts of oil.

So basically, I'm burning through 2 quarts of oil every 350-400 miles. There is no oil puddling anywhere underneath the car when parked in my garage.

However, if I start the car in the morning (40 degrees F to 50 degrees F) and let it warm up for 10 minutes prior to driving it, I will notice a spot of oil at the tail pipe on the ground approx. 3"-4" in diameter.

With this much oil consumption, could this be more than just a possible Oil Separator or CCV issue?

Last edited by Alki; 03-29-2013 at 12:14 PM.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Ads by Google

Guests, get your FREE E46Fanatics.com membership to remove this ad.
Old 11-09-2012, 02:30 PM   #2
Mango
Over 15,000 visitors
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,450
My Ride: M54B30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alki View Post
Bought a 2002 325i about 4 months ago. I drive approximately 400 miles to and from work on a weekly basis. Around the 350 mile mark, my low oil light comes on and I have to add 2 quarts of oil.

So basically, I'm burning through 2 quarts of oil every 350-400 miles. There is no oil puddling anywhere underneath the car when parked in my garage.

However, if I start the car in the morning (40 degrees F to 50 degrees F) and let it warm up for 10 minutes prior to driving it, I will notice a spot of oil at the tail pipe on the ground approx. 3"-4" in diameter.

With this much oil consumption, could this be more than just a possible Oil Separator or CCV issue?
Your oil is collecting in the undertray and blowing on the freeway as you drive. That's why you don't notice it dripping.

Replace the oil filter housing gasket and valve cover gasket for starters. Your oil filter housing gasket is definitely completely failed.
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 02:32 PM   #3
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by E46Mango View Post
Your oil is collecting in the undertray and blowing on the freeway as you drive. That's why you don't notice it dripping.

Replace the oil filter housing gasket and valve cover gasket for starters. Your oil filter housing gasket is definitely completely failed.
Thanks for the quick reply, Mango. My OFHG has absolutely no signs of oil anywhere near it. Motor is clean. The same can be said about my valve cover gasket.

I will check closer this weekend and take your advice. However, what could be causing the oil to be coming out of my exhaust when I warm the car up in the mornings?

Thanks again for the reply.

Last edited by Alki; 11-09-2012 at 02:34 PM.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 02:52 PM   #4
lcoleman
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the barnyard
Posts: 2,458
My Ride: '79 Massey Ferguson
Sounds like oil is getting into the intake tract, not leaking out. An oil leak that bad would definitely leave spots.

Hopefully it's the CCV, and not a blowby/ring issue.
__________________
lcoleman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 02:53 PM   #5
Mango
Over 15,000 visitors
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,450
My Ride: M54B30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alki View Post
Thanks for the quick reply, Mango. My OFHG has absolutely no signs of oil anywhere near it. Motor is clean. The same can be said about my valve cover gasket.

I will check closer this weekend and take your advice. However, what could be causing the oil to be coming out of my exhaust when I warm the car up in the mornings?

Thanks again for the reply.
Are you sure about that? If those gaskets haven't been touched by now at this mileage and age then I would say there's a 95% they're both leaking. when you say oil in the exhaust, do you mean smoke? if so, what color is the smoke?

Oh and "warming up your car in the mornings" is just about one of the worst things you can do to your car. People think they're babying their car when in fact they're doing the exact opposite. it's also relatively destructive to the environment.
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:02 PM   #6
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by E46Mango View Post
Are you sure about that? If those gaskets haven't been touched by now at this mileage and age then I would say there's a 95% they're both leaking. when you say oil in the exhaust, do you mean smoke? if so, what color is the smoke?
The vehicle has 115k miles on it and I see no oil anywhere on the engine, but I will take an even closer look this weekend. The oil is seen on the ground, right below the tailpipe. I don't see any smoke at all and the car runs fine. No idling issues or anything to make me think it wasn't. Any ideas?

Quote:
Oh and "warming up your car in the mornings" is just about one of the worst things you can do to your car. People think they're babying their car when in fact they're doing the exact opposite. it's also relatively destructive to the environment.
I was doing it mostly to get the cabin warmed up so it's not so damn cold in the morning when I sit down to drive to work, lol. I was born and raised in Florida, so these 40 degree mornings are still something I haven't gotten used to here in Tennessee.

Last edited by Alki; 11-09-2012 at 03:07 PM.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:03 PM   #7
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by lcoleman View Post
Sounds like oil is getting into the intake tract, not leaking out. An oil leak that bad would definitely leave spots.

Hopefully it's the CCV, and not a blowby/ring issue.
I wouldn't think that a car with 115k miles would have any type of blow-by issue. Then again, anything is possible. I wouldn't think that a CCV issue would have that kind of oil consumption associated with it ... well, I hope not!

Any suggestions?

Last edited by Alki; 11-09-2012 at 03:04 PM.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:09 PM   #8
WDE46
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Virgo Supercluster
Posts: 8,618
My Ride: 2004 330Ci OBM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alki View Post
I was doing it mostly to get the cabin warmed up so it's not so damn cold in the morning when I sit down to drive to work, lol. I was born and raised in Florida, so these 40 degree mornings are still something I haven't gotten used to here in Tennessee.
LOL, 40 degree mornings. Tennessee is going to kick your ass if you think that's cold. It'll settle into the teens for most of January at night/early morning (I'm from Nashville). The people up north are still laughing at that temperature though, haha. If you're freezing at 40 degrees my advice is to put some pants and a shirt on.

Take off the plastic cover under the car and see if it has oil all over it. All you need is a phillips screw driver. I did it once without even using ramps, but you need long arms and a short screw driver.

Last edited by WDE46; 11-09-2012 at 03:11 PM.
WDE46 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:17 PM   #9
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by WDE46 View Post
LOL, 40 degree mornings. Tennessee is going to kick your ass if you think that's cold. It'll settle into the teens for most of January at night/early morning (I'm from Nashville). The people up north are still laughing at that temperature though, haha. If you're freezing at 40 degrees my advice is to put some pants and a shirt on.

Take off the plastic cover under the car and see if it has oil all over it. All you need is a phillips screw driver. I did it once without even using ramps, but you need long arms and a short screw driver.

I know it gets colder and I'll get used to it ... someday. LOL!

Anyways, I'll be sure to pull off the cover and take a peak at it this weekend. I'm not seeing ANY oil under the car though in the garage other than at the tailpipe in the back. That's why I figured it might be a CCV/Oil Separator issue. To see this much oil loss makes me think it's something much more severe, which worries me.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:37 PM   #10
lcoleman
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the barnyard
Posts: 2,458
My Ride: '79 Massey Ferguson
This happened gradually, or suddenly? That is pretty severe oil loss...generally, that is a CCV issue. If something is clogged or not draining properly, all of the oil is pulled from the valve cover into the intake by the vacuum (ahem, absolute pressure lower than atmospheric to make the forum happy) of the engine.

Afaik, oil only gets into the combustion chamber via the CCV system, piston rings, or valve stem seals. No external engine oil leak is going to come out the exhaust, and 2qts in 350 miles is going to fill the belly pan and leave a huge puddle sooner rather than later. You're burning, not leaking.

After moving to NoVA...TN winter is nothing, and I'm sure this is only the tip of the iceberg. I hear the weather there is nice right now, be glad it isn't 50 like it is here!
__________________
lcoleman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:39 PM   #11
Patrick- BMWPartsSource
Internet Sales
 
Patrick- BMWPartsSource's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Lancaster PA
Posts: 1,047
My Ride: n/a
if there is anything i can do to help please don't hesitate to email me. i have BMW certified master technicians on staff to answer any questions.
info@bmwpartssource.com
__________________

BMWPartssource.com
Patrick- BMWPartsSource is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:43 PM   #12
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
I will check more into it this weekend when I have time to look at it more thoroughly. Another BMW owner friend of mine said that he's not seeing any oil on the engine and thinks it's the CCV, but is concerned because 2 quarts in so few miles is pretty substantial.

I'm pricing all the hoses and the CCV, etc. now. Looks like I'll probably start with that and hope that it fixes the issue. If not, the car is gone and I'll buy something else.

Is it common to see this kind of oil loss with a CCV problem? So much oil has me concerned about the Cats.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:48 PM   #13
lcoleman
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the barnyard
Posts: 2,458
My Ride: '79 Massey Ferguson
Do a search, it's certainly possible. I think the common assumption is the dipstick guide tube clogs, so be sure to read up on that. And yes, your cats probably aren't liking that much oil...the sooner the better on fixing it.
__________________
lcoleman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:51 PM   #14
Mango
Over 15,000 visitors
 
Mango's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 22,450
My Ride: M54B30
theres nothing at the back of the car that can leak engine oil unless its running down the exhaust pipes. whens the last time you had the engine stripped of its parts? you can't really see leaks unless everything is stripped down. and if everything was stripped down, you would have replaced the parts that cause this leak in the first place.

this leads me to believe you haven't thorougly checked your engine for wetness down below where you can't see.
__________________
A lifetime free of problems if you follow my guides
Cooling | Maintenance | Suspension | Vacuum | Supreme Reliability | Details

OVER A MILLION VIEWS
Mango is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 03:58 PM   #15
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by E46Mango View Post
theres nothing at the back of the car that can leak engine oil unless its running down the exhaust pipes. whens the last time you had the engine stripped of its parts? you can't really see leaks unless everything is stripped down. and if everything was stripped down, you would have replaced the parts that cause this leak in the first place.

this leads me to believe you haven't thorougly checked your engine for wetness down below where you can't see.
I'm certain that the oil is coming out of the exhaust.

I had the oil pan gasket replaced 2 weeks after I bought the car and I got under there to see it personally. 2 weeks later, I took it back so that we could get another look under there and everything was dry.

However, the oil he used was Castrol Edge 5W30. Once the oil consumption started about a month ago (which was much lower than it is now), I started putting 0W30 Edge (European Blend) and it got worse. 2 weeks ago, I put 10W30 in there and it's been using the same amount. This week, I went back to 5W30.

Maybe it's me switching oils, but I doubt it.

I just want a fix and I will start with the CCV and a fresh oil change. If this doesn't fix the problem, I'll move on to another vehicle and ditch this one.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 04:12 PM   #16
WDE46
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Virgo Supercluster
Posts: 8,618
My Ride: 2004 330Ci OBM
Burning 2 qt/400 miles has nothing to do with the type of oil you use.

You need to trace the oil that is coming from the exhaust area. I would think you would smell the hot oil on the exhaust if it was running all the way down the headers and to the tailpipe. You also need to determine if that is actually engine oil, or another problem in itself. If you have no leaks, then you are burning that oil. I'd do my CCV and hope that fixes it, otherwise you need new rings. You want this to be a leak, but like lcoleman said, there would be massive amounts of oil spilling out everywhere if this was just a leak.
WDE46 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 04:25 PM   #17
Alki
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 16
My Ride: 2002 BMW 325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by WDE46 View Post
Burning 2 qt/400 miles has nothing to do with the type of oil you use.

You need to trace the oil that is coming from the exhaust area. I would think you would smell the hot oil on the exhaust if it was running all the way down the headers and to the tailpipe. You also need to determine if that is actually engine oil, or another problem in itself. If you have no leaks, then you are burning that oil. I'd do my CCV and hope that fixes it, otherwise you need new rings. You want this to be a leak, but like lcoleman said, there would be massive amounts of oil spilling out everywhere if this was just a leak.
The oil is coming out of the tailpipe, it's not running down it. There's no leaks on the ground when the car isn't running. None at all. It's only when I start the car and let it idle do I see the oil on the ground at the tailpipe exit.

If the rings are gone in this car, after only 115k miles, this will more than likely be the first and last BMW I own.
Alki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 04:29 PM   #18
adaseb
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,069
My Ride: 2002 BMW 320i
at the back of the engine is a small torx screw that caused massive oil loss for someone. He tightened it and the oil loss went away. It's in the middle of the head.
adaseb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 04:35 PM   #19
WDE46
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Virgo Supercluster
Posts: 8,618
My Ride: 2004 330Ci OBM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alki View Post
The oil is coming out of the tailpipe, it's not running down it. There's no leaks on the ground when the car isn't running. None at all. It's only when I start the car and let it idle do I see the oil on the ground at the tailpipe exit.

If the rings are gone in this car, after only 115k miles, this will more than likely be the first and last BMW I own.
There is no way oil is making it all the way out the tailpipe. Anyway, your car is either leaking oil or it is burning it. With oil loss this high there has to be a pool of oil or a lot of blue smoke when you rev it. It is just not possible for it to be anything else.

This is not typical of a BMW, so don't let that put you off. BMW engine mechanics are usually flawless. Just the rubber parts tend to fail.

Last edited by WDE46; 11-09-2012 at 04:43 PM.
WDE46 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-2012, 04:41 PM   #20
lcoleman
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: the barnyard
Posts: 2,458
My Ride: '79 Massey Ferguson
Quote:
Originally Posted by WDE46 View Post
There is no way oil is making it all the way out the tailpipe.
But it's more likely that it's defying gravity and running horizontally down the hot pipes, without burning off, and dripping off at the tip?
__________________
lcoleman is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Censor is ON





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:28 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
(c) 1999 - 2011 performanceIX Inc - privacy policy - terms of use