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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 12-21-2010, 06:40 PM   #1
ilovebeemers
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What mark do you fill up to on your dipstick?

I was wondering if you guys fill to top of the '1.1 quart mark' (green arrow) or to the top of the indented notch (bottom of the red arrow)?

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Old 12-21-2010, 06:45 PM   #2
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According to my manual It should be between the notch.
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Old 12-21-2010, 06:56 PM   #3
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If it's the correct dipstick for your model, then up to the bottom of the top notch is full.

If you're at the top of the top notch, you're a little over, but safe. A little over that top notch...starts becoming the danger zone.

Next complete draining of oil on level ground...add the amount your manual says to add. After you've driven and let it settle down...that's you're mark.

I let mine cool and drain down overnight...and, it appears I actually did have the wrong dipstick for years and used that for adding oil. Turns out, I'd been running about 5/8th qts. low for 3-4 years and never knew...so 'calibrate' your dipstick next oil change...in the meanwhile, I'd stay perfectly in the middle...or, for now, let it run lower and see if your oil sensor works! Maybe not!

(Sorry OP...someone is going to yell at me for writing all this stuff to you...sorry for getting you involved! LOL)

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Old 12-21-2010, 07:01 PM   #4
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Isn't green half a quart low.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:03 PM   #5
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Anywhere in the top notch. Is this really that difficult to figure out?

FWIW your arrows are in the wrong places.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:10 PM   #6
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Isn't green half a quart low.
I tried to ignore asking about that reference...had no idea what that meant.

BTW, guy at dealer today was talking about his 2009 335 twin turbo diesel...something like 300 hp and 425 lb-ft...sounds like that'd be something!

Jake is right...that where your oil is at is where I think it ought to be until you calibrate dipstick. I know...it's a blessing and a curse!

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Old 12-21-2010, 07:10 PM   #7
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mine is right on the top notch below the red. I've put 6.2 quarts in it to fill it up during oil changes. The oil will read a little more when it is fully warmed up. Best time to check it is when it has sat over night then check it in the morning.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:15 PM   #8
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mine is right on the top notch below the red. I've put 7.2 quarts in it to fill it up during oil changes.
7.2 sounds like too much. 6.9 qts. in my 328i...you sure about fill capacity?

I'm going to leave before this gets too crazy!

D
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:16 PM   #9
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The top mark is Full, the bottom mark is a quart low. A typical dipstick will show 2 quarts low, or more, if off the bottom of the stick. Basically, if no oil shows you can dump in 2 quarts before you bother to check again.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:17 PM   #10
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7.2 sounds like too much. 6.9 qts. in my 328i...you sure about fill capacity?

I'm going to leave before this gets too crazy!

D
yeh it was i reedited it i couldn't remember how much I have been buying I buy 7 quarts and barely use any of the last 7th quart of oil.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:19 PM   #11
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Isn't green half a quart low.
On the example shown, the car is a half quart low. Since you cannot buy a half quart of oil, then ignore it. When it is a full quart low, add one.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:20 PM   #12
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On the example shown, the car is a half quart low. Since you cannot buy a half quart of oil, then ignore it. When it is a full quart low, add one.
Couldn't you just buy a half quart and pour it in it. Then drive it a while check again and use the rest of the half quart if it read another half quart low?
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:20 PM   #13
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why is it so hard for a top car company to put a full and low line on it and it says full and low right on it. All the other car companies do it why not bmw?
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:20 PM   #14
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yeh it was i reedited it i couldn't remember how much I have been buying I buy 7 quarts and barely use any of the last 7th quart of oil.
You buy 7 and use them all if you change the filter. The car holds 6.9Q on an oil change. The 0.1Q overfill is completely inconsequential. Add 7 quarts when you change the oil.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:23 PM   #15
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You buy 7 and use them all if you change the filter. The car holds 6.9Q on an oil change. The 0.1Q overfill is completely inconsequential. Add 7 quarts when you change the oil.
My car doesn't use all 7 (6.9)quarts. I have 120k miles.....I fill and check and will not over fill my engine.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:26 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by ilovebeemers View Post
I was wondering if you guys fill to top of the '1.1 quart mark' (green arrow) or to the top of the indented notch (bottom of the red arrow)?

You are looking at the stick wrong. The top notch is the one nearest the handle, the bottom notch is the one nearest the tip. In your example, the top notch is the red arrow.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:32 PM   #17
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My car doesn't use all 7 (6.9)quarts. I have 120k miles.....I fill and check and will not over fill my engine.
You are mistaken. The vehicle specification states 6.9 US quarts. There is no distinction for 4 or 6 cylinder motors. There are no US destination E46 cars, so there's little point in giving the spec for a motor that is not here.
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Old 12-21-2010, 07:36 PM   #18
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mine is right on the top notch below the red. I've put 6.2 quarts in it to fill it up during oil changes. The oil will read a little more when it is fully warmed up. Best time to check it is when it has sat over night then check it in the morning.
You are reading the dipstick wrong, that's why you do not use 7Q of oil. You are filling to the BOTTOM line, not the TOP line. The bottom line is the one nearest the end of the dipstick, the blue line in the attached picture. The red line is the top line, and it takes just a half-cup less than 7Q to fill the oil to this line.
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:07 PM   #19
ilovebeemers
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Its a question. Not my pic. Just wondering wat others thought especially since the bmw pic points at the notch

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Old 12-21-2010, 08:17 PM   #20
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7 quarts if you drain completely.
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