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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!

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Old 05-13-2002, 03:05 PM   #1
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15,000 Miles for first Oil Change: Why So Long?

15,000 miles seems like a long time to wait for an oil change... Am I the only one who feels this way?
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:07 PM   #2
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Yes... I change mine myself at 5k intervals just to be safe. And I let the dealer do them at the 15k ones...

Do a search of the forums and you will come up with a lot of posts on this subject.


good luck!
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:07 PM   #3
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It's BMWs recommended change. You can always change it every 3000 miles. What ever you feel its best for your baby!
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:08 PM   #4
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Is it "bad" for the car to wait 15,000 miles for its first oil change....
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:34 PM   #5
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BMW claims that their engines are so well built, that it doesn't require a regular 3,000 mile oil change. I was at the dealership getting my oil change, and a salesman told me that the new 7 series engines are so well built, that their regularly scheduled oil change is every 25,000 miles!!!
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:39 PM   #6
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It's all about marketing...the less people have to come in to the dealer for service, the better for BMW's bottomline. Plus, since the American market is mostly based on leases, people aren't keeping their cars for more than 36,000 miles anyways (at least this is BMW's thinking). Unfortunately, leaving dirty oil in your engine can have terrible consequences, especially if you aren't 75 years old and actually like to see the tach needle go above 5000 RPMs "once in a while"

I would learn to change your oil yourself...it's very simple (especially with the extractor devices out now) and can actually be a fun DIY on a boring Sunday afternoon
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Old 05-13-2002, 03:46 PM   #7
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can someone post a DIY to do a oil change on a 323CI?
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Old 05-13-2002, 04:53 PM   #8
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I agree with all the post, but also i htink changing it at 3k miles.. is kinda soon becuase the oil used is synthetic, and its suppose to last well beyond 3k?. I think you can wait at least 6k
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Old 05-13-2002, 05:33 PM   #9
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So the first oil change is 15k miles? Dam, I only 300 miles on my.......
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Old 05-13-2002, 07:14 PM   #10
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Does the early than the recommended oil change include changing the oil filter?
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Old 05-13-2002, 07:44 PM   #11
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Can you go to the dealer and have them change your oil earlier? I mean I paid for my warranty and all that service stuff, so can I just schedule an appointment at 5,000 miles?
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Old 05-13-2002, 08:05 PM   #12
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ummm no

you'll have to pay for the oil change unless the indicator says it's time to change it, personally I change mine @ 3k miles
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Old 05-14-2002, 09:23 AM   #13
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7500

I replaced mine at 7500.....just be sure to tell the dealer NOT to reset the service indicator.......I will get my free one when I hit 15,000.
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Old 05-14-2002, 09:43 AM   #14
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hmm, to try to answer everyone's questions. Is it bad to wait til 15k to change oil? well, it depends on the owner. You want your baby to last long, then change it at every 5k. I personally changed mines at 5k and the oil was pretty damn dark for synthetic oil. The DIY for oil change is easy. Just jack up the car, front only. Go under it. Look for a oil pan cover, if you have one. I know for the newer models, our babies came without the access panel. Put the oil pan under the drain hole, little bit farther out so when the oil comes out, it'll end up in the pan and not the floor. Let the oil drain out. Take off the oil cap on top of the engine. Take out the oil filter, replace it. After the oil drains out, put the bolt back into the drain hole. Tighten the filter cap back into place and pour in about 6.5 quarts or more oil into it. I think it's 5w30 i believe. I use mobil 1 which is recommended. and that's it i think. Well, it's in the DIY in some BMW site, just search for it. If not, you can spend about i think 60 bucks to get your oil changed at the dealer. Just tell them to give ya an oil change and dont reset the computer or you're f@#ked. That's easier and cleaner. As for the 15k interval oil change. It depends on your on-board computer. If you computer say you need it sooner, then take it in when the odometer matches the counter for your first scheduled service. It's not alway sat 15k. I have 6000+ miles on my car and i will have my first service at probably 7500 or so estimating. It said that i need a service at 8000 right now. The harder you drive, the faster the counter will lower. I've only had my car for 5 months. hahah

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Old 05-14-2002, 10:30 AM   #15
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first change was @ 2k...it will be @3k clicks now....in los angeles.. short drives..lots of stop & go..all the heat & dirt...15k changes would kill the engine...no matter what kind of oil...
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Old 05-14-2002, 12:45 PM   #16
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7500 Mile intervals

Dont be cheap and wait for the scheduled service. If you love your car, take care of it. There is no way the very first oil change should be at 15k miles. Think of all the metal that has grinded into the oil. I get my oil changed at every 7500 miles. 3000 miles is too soon to change the synthetic oil, and by the time you hit 15000 miles, your filter has stopped working a long time ago.

An oil change at the dealer is about $90, and you get a car wash.
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Old 05-14-2002, 12:51 PM   #17
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I'm also in agreement with the majority here....I just changed mine at 5K and used Mobile 1 synthetic....I was surprised at how dirty it looked at only 5K....I'll change mine in that intervall as well and take it to the dealer for the 15, 30 and 45 service. I'll probably also bring my own oil to the dealer as well. If not for the oil, I can't imagine an oil filter of any kind going 15K.
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Old 05-14-2002, 12:53 PM   #18
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There are 7 quarts of oil in there, and quite a large filter, that is why they say it can go than long, especially on synthetic oil. Theoretically, it could go that long. Would I or did I let it go that long? Nope.

$90 is REDICULOUS for a 15 minute oil change, and I don't want ANYONE but me washing my car...
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Old 05-14-2002, 12:54 PM   #19
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You can buy Mobil 1 for $4.03 a at/ at your local Walmart, any weight. Cotsco sells it for $21.95 for a pack fo 6, but at Cotsco, they only come in 10w-30.
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Old 05-14-2002, 04:08 PM   #20
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With synthetic oil, you don't have metabolic petroleum products build up that will

erode the piston and cylinder. That's why you need to change regular oil every 3000 miles. When Mobil 1 first came out it was marketed as needed to be replaced every 25000 miles which justified its increased cost. But I don't know anyone that chages it that infrequently. There's no question that the oil will be stable for 15K unlike regular oil. But it does build up some other material. Personally I have only used synthetic oil in my cars and have changed the oil every 5000-7500. The good thing about synthetic is that if you can't get to the garage for a little while, it doesn't matter, unlike reg oil
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