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E36 M3 (1992-1999) {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999


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Old Thu, Jul-23-2009, 08:57:21 PM   #1
joe91985
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Default Yet another oil consumption thread... over a qt. in ~500 miles

Alrighty so I have a wonderful M3 that wants to burn oil on the regular... I noticed I'm always a bit low when I check it, about every second fill up. So I decided to dive in a bit and figure out what is going on. It seems that the oil consumption has got worse in the past months. So heres the info I think would help...

Bought car ~3 years ago with ~86k (father owns a independant service/repair facility so we bought it from another dealership out of state, of course no records but clean carfax and no paint work. Looked at 60 different cars before settling.)

Currently has 145,175 on the clock, oil changes every 5k using M1 synthetic and performing all other regular maintinance items when needed (mileages, age, ect.)

Up until the last 2 oil changes I have used the M1 15w50 gold cap oil for high reving engines, friend with M3 recommended I use it, so I did. Car ran great with that oil but winter months started to have be concerned with excessive resistance trying to churn that oil in temps around 20F. So I decided to switch to M1 synthetic 5w30 for the last 2 oil changes. No noticed difference in vehicles running after changing oils.

So I started to keep track of oil consumption:
07-11-09 Oil change performed @ 144,599, filled to max level mark on dip stick for a good reference of oil loss as the days went. No leaks of any kind found.
07-19-09 Fill up car and check oil @ 145,025 Oil level is just above minimum mark after letting oil settle while filling almost entire fuel tank.
07-22-09 Check oil while cleaning car @ 145,175 Oil level well below minimum mark. Added 1 1/3 qt. of oil to reach max level.

So.... 576 miles after oil change I'm 1 1/3 qt low on oil! Please check my math but thats what I come up with.

On 07-11-09 I decided I was going to replace the PCV valve and hoses since I have read here that that could lead to oil consumption and my G/F's 01' 325xi had situations where it would push out blue smoke at start up occasionaly and her PCV corrected the issue. I figured my car throwing some black smoke during hard accel and some smoke at times during start up might be along the same lines. So I replaced the PCV and the hose from the manifold to the valve but kept the rubber hose from the valve to the dip stick tube(may have answered my probs there if that hose is clogged, will check tonight).

During this service I also dropped the oil pan to check my oil pump nut, you can mark me down as one of those who wasted their time but feels good knowing it wasen't loosening, applied lock tight and installed new pan gasket putting RTV where needed to catch any leaks from where engine metal is set together. I will say I had a bit of sludgie oil in the bottom of the pan, not really thick but definitly seems like the oil that does not come out during the normal draining of the engine oil.

So i'm pretty damn concerned about the oil useage, I would aslo expect that I would have oxygen sensors clogging up if I'm burning off that much oil. And ultimatly I would cats clogging up... exspensive repairs down the road that I may be able to prevent.

I have not replaced the oxygen sensors at 100k like BMW suggests, I have checked the changing of the Mv on the sensors and they all react as they are supposed to so that tells me no issues and I'm not gonna spend a fortune on oxygen sensors just because BMW says to do it every 100k even though I understand partially why they want you to.

I did a compression test a time ago and heres what I got:
07-10-08
cyl 1 cyl 2 cyl 3 cyl 4 cyl 5 cyl 6
190 175 175 185 152 190
- First test, wasent sure if I was doing it right or not so did a second.
204 190 200 205 200 195
-Second test, these numbers seemed much more consistant.

I plan to do a leak down test and see what the results are from that, and another compression test. The initial compresson in cyl 5 was a bit scary and had me bitting my nails but the second test I did which was immediatly after yeilded better results, If you would like to comment or ask questions about the compression test feel free.

My driving style is normal in my opinion, half city half hwy. I like to play and have fun, never have I gone over 5.5k RPM. I do do some down shifting for exit ramps and back roads, but will wait until the gear I'm going out of reaches 3k, then rev match for the next lowest gear to provide as much of a smooth transition as possible. Car averages about 23MPG according to trip computer and it has stayed fairly accurate compared to the tests I have done to verify it.

So thats about all the info I have on this thing, I know BMW says 1 qt. every 1k but I'm in the boat that, that alone is excessive, and the mileage I'm getting is much worse.

Any help would be greatly appreciated I have searched this issue alot and figure at this point it is time to bring my vehicle out as an example.

Any guys that had oil consumption problems but have corrected then please advise!

Thanks,
Joe
99' M3 2/5
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Old Thu, Jul-23-2009, 09:30:58 PM   #2
I3MW
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Did you burn a lot of oil with the 15w-50?
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Old Thu, Jul-23-2009, 10:25:17 PM   #3
joe91985
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I didn't keep track then but I was adding oil between oil chnages, usually about 2 qts but thats from memory. I was thinking the different oil viscosity may have something to do with it but still the oil consumption is high. I'm going to be keeping a log of the miles and how much I'm using as I keep driving the car so I can have a even better average oil consumption but so far it's a bit scary. I'm going to be pulling spark plugs soon to see what they look like and will be reporting that.

-40to -10C 5W-20 -40 / 14 F

-40to -5C 5W-30 -40 / 23 F

-30to 5C 10W-30 -22 / 41 F

-30to 10C 10W-40 -22 / 50 F

-30to 20C 10W-50 -22 / 68 F

-20to 30C 15W-40 -4 / 86 F

-20to 40C 15W-50 -4 / 104 F

-20to 10C SAE 20 -4 / 50 F

-10to 50C 20W-50 14 / 122 F

0to 30C SAE 30 32 / 86 F

20to 50C SAE 40 68 / 122 F


From the looks of this it sounds like the oil I need to be using is 15w-50 or 15w-40. I'm gonna go grab some new oil tonight and change it out because i'm going on a trip this coming week and would rather not burn oil and be able to track this with the right viscosity oil. My father (very knowledgable (sp?) with vehicle, master mechanic ect ect) said I'm an idiot for putting 5w-30 in it, so I will take his advice and put the proper oil in it and report back. Thanks for looking at this thread so far!

Last edited by joe91985; Thu, Jul-23-2009 at 10:53:31 PM.
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Old Thu, Jul-23-2009, 11:20:21 PM   #4
ApexAnimal
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The #1 cause of burning oil is gummy rings and valve seals.

I would try a treatment of AutoRx. It liquefies the sludge inside your engine. If you go to bobistheoilguy.com you will find a number of testimonials complete with pics.

The only place to buy it is at auotrx.com (I think that's right) From what I understand there is no other product like it.

Good luck. cause that's a lot of oil. I only about 1/2 qt every 10k. yes that's 10,000. (in my dub)
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Old Thu, Jul-23-2009, 11:22:08 PM   #5
ApexAnimal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe91985 View Post
I didn't keep track then but I was adding oil between oil chnages, usually about 2 qts but thats from memory. I was thinking the different oil viscosity may have something to do with it but still the oil consumption is high. I'm going to be keeping a log of the miles and how much I'm using as I keep driving the car so I can have a even better average oil consumption but so far it's a bit scary. I'm going to be pulling spark plugs soon to see what they look like and will be reporting that.

-40to -10C 5W-20 -40 / 14 F

-40to -5C 5W-30 -40 / 23 F

-30to 5C 10W-30 -22 / 41 F

-30to 10C 10W-40 -22 / 50 F

-30to 20C 10W-50 -22 / 68 F

-20to 30C 15W-40 -4 / 86 F

-20to 40C 15W-50 -4 / 104 F

-20to 10C SAE 20 -4 / 50 F

-10to 50C 20W-50 14 / 122 F

0to 30C SAE 30 32 / 86 F

20to 50C SAE 40 68 / 122 F


From the looks of this it sounds like the oil I need to be using is 15w-50 or 15w-40. I'm gonna go grab some new oil tonight and change it out because i'm going on a trip this coming week and would rather not burn oil and be able to track this with the right viscosity oil. My father (very knowledgable (sp?) with vehicle, master mechanic ect ect) said I'm an idiot for putting 5w-30 in it, so I will take his advice and put the proper oil in it and report back. Thanks for looking at this thread so far!
Not to "dis" your dad, but I would say your an idiot for using anything other than what the manual calls for.
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Old Fri, Jul-24-2009, 12:31:48 AM   #6
egebhardt
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I had 170,000 miles and was burning about a quart of oil every 1,100 miles. I cleaned the OSV and ICV. Seen here.
http://egebhardt.posterous.com/bmw-m...he-icv-and-osv
I don't know if it helped cuz I sold the car a month later.
I was running 5w-30 Mobil 1 and Castrol 5w-30 (regular Dino oil). Both leaked the same.
I didn't have smoke coming out the back. The car ran fine.
I replaced the VANOS and valve cover gasket, but no improvement. I replaced the plugs and none were oily. I replaced the anti-freeze twice and never saw oil in it. All I could figure is worn rings or valve guides. My compression was 180psi +or- 3. So... pretty good.

My friend with a 97 and 150,000 miles was burning a quart every 375 miles. He thought that was fine, but he couldn't locate the air filter if you asked him to.
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97 Byzanz on Black 4dr - Bot 6.13.19
96 Boston on Grey 2dr - Sold 10.28.17 Benny and Suad
98 TiSilver on Black 4dr - Sold 7.19.17 Jono driving it
97 Byzanz on Magma 4dr - Sold 7.7.17 Jerad hailed it
98 Estoril on Grey 4dr - Sold 9.23.13 Garrett driving it
98 Arctic on Grey 4dr - Sold 3.18.13 Brandon driving it
98 Estoril on Grey 2dr - Sold 8.6.12 Thy sold it
99 Estoril on Sand 2dr - Sold 7.31.12 Eric modding it
98 Arctic on Grey 2dr - Sold 3.10.12 Kyle driving it
96 Techno on Black 2dr-Sold 6.13.09 Ross totaled it

Last edited by egebhardt; Sun, Aug-08-2010 at 07:47:18 AM.
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Old Fri, Jul-24-2009, 01:38:00 PM   #7
joe91985
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Not to "dis" your dad, but I would say your an idiot for using anything other than what the manual calls for.

So your agreeing with him? dosen't make a whole lot of sense....

I had 170,000 miles and was burning about a quart of oil every 1,100 miles. I cleaned the OSV and ICV. Seen here.

I have cleaned the ICV about 10k ago, just replaced the OSV or PCV when I started tracking the oil consumption. Oil was being lost before it was replaced, hence the reason for replacing it.
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Old Fri, Jul-24-2009, 02:24:20 PM   #8
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^ No, I'm saying follow the manual and use the proper oil. The bearings are designed for a specific viscosity along with the other workings of the motor. But there is more than just viscosity to worry about. The fact that he stated the viscosities of various oils he has tried doesn't mean he is using the right oil. There are more factors than just viscosity. That's why BMW and most others for that matter have an "approval" system. They may specify 5-30, but that's only part of it. There are other factors involved.

If you're burning oil it is unlikely that the cause is worn rings. Possible that valve seals are going bad, but still unlikely there too. The #1 cause of oil consumption, especially to this level, is gummed up seals and rings.(which also causes leaks.) The only way I know of to fix this, shy of tearing down the engine, is AutoRx.
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Old Thu, Jul-30-2009, 05:12:33 PM   #9
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APEX - Alright, just very confusing post stating to not "dis" him but completely agree with him.... anyway I follow what you stated and your very right about that stuff.

Onward with oil consumption:

put about 700 mile son the car and it has barely used any oil, sooooo apparently 5w30 is too thin for my engine? Anyway I'm going to keep using the 20w-50 oil and keep an eye on it. Anyway just figured I woul atleast finish off the thread with stating that the proper oil should be used and their is definitly a reason they suggest it!
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Old Thu, Aug-06-2009, 06:32:16 AM   #10
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Some engines just burn oil. My first one did even when it was brand new and even if I used 20/50 (about 1 quart per 1000, sometimes 750). My new engine never burns oil and I'm using 5/30 and it's 105F. Though I might switch to 15/50 (always synthetic) as it gets over 100K miles. The power feels the same so just check it every week and don't worry. But a new valve cover gasket and pvc valve can help.
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Discussing Yet another oil consumption thread... over a qt. in ~500 miles in the E36 M3 (1992-1999) Forum - {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999 at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)