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09-19-2002, 06:53 AM
At the weekend, I did an oil change on my M3 (at about half the BMW service indicator recommendation) and I am concerned that I may have overfilled... but am just not sure.

I let the oil drain completely (left it for an hour) replaced the filter and sump plug, threw 6 litres in straight off and then followed the oil check procedure (full operating temp, idle for 15 sec's, switch off and wait at least one minute, then check). As tends to be the case with stupid colored dipsticks (M3 is not the only one) reading the level with new oil is not the easiest, but it seemed to be a little over halfway between the marks, so I threw in a little under an extra half litre.

So I check the oil again following the same procedure. The thing is, if I follow the procedure exactly, as in precisely 1 minute wait and then check after shut off, the level is SPOT ON, but if I let the "wait at least one minute" be closer to two minutes, then the level is well over.

I have to say that this seems to be the stupidest way to check the oil as every reading will change as more oil drains back into the sump. Anyway, do you think my level is okay, will damage happen to engine / catalyst?


09-19-2002, 07:36 AM
Lots of cracks and crevases for oil to take it's time draining to sump. If you waitied 30 minutes even more would show up. I follow the directions but wait a "few minutes", not more than 3 or 4, works for me, German dealer here says the same. I'd say if it is well over after a few minutes, you need to lower it, sorry. My technique for checking oil is to dry that dip stick off really well, then dip and remove, clean oil is a b*tch, so be sure to have lots of direct light as in a flashlight to see the shiney reflection of the fill line. Oh, after an oil change, fill it to one quart less, run it a minute or two, let it sit another few minutes, then check and slowly add in 1/4 quart increments, again waiting about a minute between adding and checking (time for oil to drain).

09-19-2002, 07:43 AM
Our techniques are pretty much the same, but it's the oil level check instructions that seem to me to leave a lot of room for interpretation - and hence differing results! It has to be said though, that the oil level even after a few minutes is no higher than the same checks I made during the break in period!

only morning when cold for better consistency.
09-19-2002, 08:18 AM

09-19-2002, 09:08 AM

09-19-2002, 10:31 AM
frustration, when the oil level varies so much with so little difference in the "approximately one minute" time. That, combined with the anxiety about bearing lubrication, doesn't give me a sense of security. I have no good advice, but I sure wish BMW did.<br><A HREF=""><IMG SRC="">

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