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Oil fill experiment

Old 03-02-2019, 02:03 PM
  #1  
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Model Year: 2010 528i e60 N52k
Default Oil fill experiment

The Bentley manuals says the 2010 e60 takes 6.9 US quarts of oil in the crankcase.
When I change the oil I always put in 6.9 quarts.

I ran an experiment today when I changed the oil. I only put in 5.5 US quarts of oil.
I then got into the iDrive and it registered all the way at the Max mark.

That leads me to believe when the oil is drained, it doesn't all come out and I've been over filling it for years.

Alternatively, my oil gauge in the bottom of the pan could be inaccurate.

If I have been over filling it for the last 3 years, maybe that is why the oil pan gasket leaks today?

Maybe the rear main seal and the front main seal are also compromised due to the excess pressure?





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Old 03-02-2019, 07:59 PM
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My Ride: 2005 545i, premium package, 6sp manual, cold package, navigation package.
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How much oil did you drain? I doubt that you have been overfilling by 2.5 qts every time.
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Old 03-03-2019, 09:22 AM
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Yes, I did measure the oil precisely when it drained. There were 7 quarts that drained out of the crankcase. However, when I put 5.5 quarts back in, the oil pan sensor shows MAX in the iDrive screen.

Now the question is:

- when the oil pan sensor is malfunctioning, does it get stuck on Max and always shows a Max reading?
- when the oil pan sensor breaks, does the iDrive screen go black with no reading at all?
- what are the characteristics of a broken oil pan sensor or malfunctioning sensor?

There is something interesting going on. Below are two pictures of the iDrive screen oil reading. At the top of one screen, I show how a portion of the measurement has been cut off now that I only put 5.5 quarts in the engine.




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Old 03-03-2019, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by scottalexander View Post
Yes, I did measure the oil precisely when it drained. There were 7 quarts that drained out of the crankcase. However, when I put 5.5 quarts back in, the oil pan sensor shows MAX in the iDrive screen.

Now the question is:

- when the oil pan sensor is malfunctioning, does it get stuck on Max and always shows a Max reading?
- when the oil pan sensor breaks, does the iDrive screen go black with no reading at all?
- what are the characteristics of a broken oil pan sensor or malfunctioning sensor?

There is something interesting going on. Below are two pictures of the iDrive screen oil reading. At the top of one screen, I show how a portion of the measurement has been cut off now that I only put 5.5 quarts in the engine.




I don't see any problem here. With 5.5 qts you are NOT showing max. Max is the reading you got when you had 6.7 qts, so the lower reading for 5.5 is correct. I wouldn't worry about the "disappearing" top part of the gauge - probably will show up when you top up to 6.9 qts.
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Old 03-05-2019, 03:48 AM
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It took 2 days for the oil sensor gauge in the oil pan to produce an accurate reading for 5.5 quarts in the crankcase verses 6.7 quarts.

Today I got in the car and the iDrive screen said, 'the oil level is below the minimum. Do not drive the vehicle'.

Just as an experiment I tried to get the oil measurement screen to see how low it was actually reading at 5.5 quarts. The iDrive would not produce that screen.

I added one quart of oil and I was able to get the iDrive screen showing the max oil level in the car.
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Old 03-05-2019, 05:49 AM
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Originally Posted by scottalexander View Post
It took 2 days for the oil sensor gauge in the oil pan to produce an accurate reading for 5.5 quarts in the crankcase verses 6.7 quarts.

Today I got in the car and the iDrive screen said, 'the oil level is below the minimum. Do not drive the vehicle'.

Just as an experiment I tried to get the oil measurement screen to see how low it was actually reading at 5.5 quarts. The iDrive would not produce that screen.

I added one quart of oil and I was able to get the iDrive screen showing the max oil level in the car.
Let me understand, now. You have 6.5 qts in crankcase and the iDrive screen is showing max., correct? So everything is OK. There never was a problem and you were replacing the correct amount of oil at all your oil changes. Sometimes curiosity does "kill the cat".
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