Wednesday, June 22, 2016

First Oil Analysis

I have been in the habit of using Blackstone Oil Analysis since I have owned my S54 M coupe.  I tested the first oil used in the X5 too, here are the results.  I am concerned about the iron and copper readings.  Will continue to use Blackstone until those stabilize.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

First Oil Change

BMW specs the first oil change to be done at 10,000 miles or after 12 months of service, whichever comes first.  On the M cars, there is a 1200 mile service.  I believe (a) 10k is too long, (b) the M engines aren't that different and if it's good for them, it's good for the rest of us, (c) oil changes are cheap, and (d) changing oil is fun.

So, at 1522 miles, I changed our oil.  I use OEM BMW factory oil and filters.  The process is easy on this car.

1.  Car at operating temp.
2.  Put car onto ramps.
3.  Remove engine top cover.  It is clipped on, just pull straight up gently.
4.  Open oil cap to drain oil to sump.
5.  Under car, remove the aero cover to the drain bolt.
6.  Remove 17 mm drain bolt and let the oil drain.  Optional, but what I do, collect a small sample of used oil mid-stream to send to Blackstone for oil analysis.
7.  Back on top, loosen the 27 mm oil filter cap.  I bought a 6-point 27mm socket from Amazon because I didn't want a 12-point to touch the cap.
8.  Remove oil filter and cap from car.  Discard filter, clean everything, replace the O-ring seal with the new one that came with the oil filter.
9.  Replace oil filter.  25 Nm toque, per what is printed on the cap.
10.  Under car, replace the copper crush washer for the drain plug.  25 Nm toque.  Replace aero cover.
11.  Add 6.25 - 6.50 liters of LL-04 BMW 5W-30 oil.
12.  Start engine.  Let it idle.  Shut off engine.  Use dipstick to check oil level.  Yes, the N57 still has a dipstick and it's fabulous.

I was pretty sad to see how black the oil was.  No way 10K intervals are OK.  Will be changing every 5,000 for the life of the car and doing periodic oil analysis reports.

7 liters, 5W-30 BMW LL-04 diesel engine oil, part number 83212365949, $8.80r each
Oil Filter with o-ring and crush washer, 11428507683, $24.16r

Total cost of this mod = $85.76r
Total investment in vehicle to date = $3195.12r

Typical clip under the engine cover.  Mates to female rubber bushings on engine side.

Typical female bushing on engine cover.

There was already a good amount of sand and dirt under our engine cover after only 1500 miles. 
Drain plug, with aero cover removed.

Oil filter


-683 oil filter element "kit".  You do not need to buy the -132 crush washer separately.

Window Tint, De-badge, Paint Protection

We debadged the car right away.  Badges come off easily with dental floss and a little citrus-based Goo Gone (not to be confused with Goof Off, which is solvent-based).  We have plans to possibly re-badge the back in a custom way, later.  De-badging is nice because (1) you get rid of the ridiculous xDrive35d side badges which make no sense on a 3.0L car (2) the car is easier to clean. 

We added Xpel Ultimate paint protection to the front bumper and headlights.   We did not do the hood because quite frankly, clear film never looks good to me on the hood.  And, the cost to put film onto the hood is about the same as repainting it.  We did have Opticoat Pro Plus applied to the whole car.  This included the door jams, all the black plastic pieces, everything.  It performs great now and I am excited to see how well it holds up in the long run.  We used Chris Arthur of Arthur's Detailing for both services and are 100.00% happy with him and his work.

We added Llumar GTX window tint in 15% variety to the front windows of the car.  It’s an excellent match to the factory tint on the rear glass.

We also added Llumar Air80 clear film to the front windshield in order to reduce heat and UV.  The Air80 is invisible and does not interfere with the HUD at all.

For both mods, we used Charleston Window Films.  Joel Valencia is the principle owner.  We had previously used both Pleasant Details and also Audio Evolution and we were disappointed with both shops.  The disappointment continues (read: I am 0 for 3 picking tint shops) with Joel.  The Air80 film on the windshield has small "champagne bubbles" underneath it.  When I mentioned it, Joel was nice about it... no problem, please bring it back and I will redo it.  We agreed.  When we picked up the car, the Air80 looked much, much better.  but, there was a 2" long striaght scratch ont he rear passenger door.  Joel apologized and offered to buff it out, but the scratch was through the color and I knew buffing would be impossible.  I filled the scratch with OEM touch up paint and clear, wet sanded it smooth, and now we need to go back to Chris Arthur and get the Opticoat on the door reapplied.  Fantastic.  Hint: sarcasm.

Window film front doors and windshield, $295.00r
Xpel Ultimate clear film front bumper, mirrors, headlights.  Opticoat Pro Plus for all painted surfaces, wheels, plastics, engine bay plastics, all exterior glass except windshield, $1750.00r

Total cost of this mod = $2045.00r
Total investment in vehicle to date = $3109.36r