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Old 26th November 2009, 05:37   #1
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Arrow DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)

Here's a small oil change DIY write-up for the BMW E90 (also for E91, E92, E93) chassis.

BMW USA gives free oil changes during the warranty period of 4 years / 50,000 miles (@ 85,000 km).
The interval between oil changes is 1 year or 15,000 miles (@ 25,000 km).
Additional (customer requested) oil changes are charged.

If you feel like saving some money, have an hour or so free on a weekend and want to do an oil change in between the recommended intervals, then here's how you can go about it.

I'm not sure what the service intervals are in India, but the procedure wouldn't change.
[The oil spec might be different for Indian cars but from what I know it's the same - but better to confirm with the local BMW dealer.]


Here's what you'll need:
  • Fully Synthetic Oil [6.9 quarts (@ 6.6 litres / 7 bottles)] - BMW High Performance Full Synthetic 5W30* (BMW P/N: 07 51 0 017 866), Mobil 1 0W40, or Castrol Syntec European Formula 0W30.
  • Oil Filter (BMW P/N: 11 42 7 566 327) - Comes with 2 o-ring washers (1 big black, 1 small green), and 1 copper crush washer.
  • Oil Filter Wrench (BMW P/N: 83 30 0 493 936) - Some people can do without this but I found it useful. You'll also need a 29 mm socket (1/2" drive wrench) to you use with it. I used a 1-1/8" socket.
  • Ramps (or a lift jack with jack stands).
  • Oil Drain Pan.
  • 17 mm socket (1/2" drive wrench).
  • Rags / paper towels.
  • Disposable rubber gloves.
  • Funnel.
  • Plastic fork.
  • Coin (1 quarter / Re. 1)


I initially bought a multi-socket dog-bone wrench / spanner but my oil drain bolt was just too tight so I had to return it and use a normal 1/2" ratchet drive.
[PICTURE 1 - Parts]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00802.jpg
[PICTURE 2 - Oil quart]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00804.jpg
[PICTURE 3 - Oil Filter]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00805.jpg

*The BMW Full Synthetic is known to be a re-labeled Castrol - if you know which one, you can use that one instead.


Note 1: Motor Oil is corrosive, poisonous to you and harmful for the environment so please use gloves while handling it. Don't dump used oil down the drain.
Most auto-parts chains and repair shops have oil recycling drums that'll let you dump your oil for free. I'm sure such facilities are available in India too - best choices would be a local petrol station, or the corner mechanic.

Note 2: Turn clockwise to tighthen it, anticlockwise to loosen -> righty tighty lefty loosey.

Note 3: Don't over-tighten your bolts. Some of the bolts will have markings on them - all you have to do is make sure the markings are aligned when you re-tighten.

Note 4: An oil change is best performed when the engine is warm or at operating temperature so drive around for a few minutes before you begin.


Now begin:
Get your car up on the ramps (I bought 8000 lb / 3629kg Rhino Ramps). If you have the Sport Package, the aero rubber-flap in front of the wheels will brush against the ramps and push them forward if the ramps are on a smooth surface or on concrete.
Rubber mats placed below the ramp will prevent this slippage. I did my oil change on a tarred road - no slipping.
[PICTURE 4 - On ramps]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00813.jpg


Set the hand-brake and put the car in gear (for manual) / Park (for auto).
Place a wheel chock / wedge behind one of the rear wheels as an additional protection.
I placed a chock behind one of the front wheels and put up a hydraulic lift jack under the other side jacking point, as an additional support - just enough so as not to raise the car. Don't use a stone as chock.
[PICTURE 5 - Chock - Front Right wheel]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00825.jpg
[PICTURE 6 - Hydraulic Jack - Left Front wheel]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00826.jpg


Open the bonnet (hood) and undo the Oil cap. Be careful as the engine is hot.
Now's a good time to get those nice tight disposable gloves on and loosen the Oil Filter housing - don't remove it just yet.
I used the Oil Filter Wrench with a 1-1/8" socket mated to a 1/2" drive. A 29 mm socket is what you need.
You can also remove it with your hands and a couple of rags (it's hot!) depending on how tightly it was torqued perviously.
If you can make out those blue markings on the Oil Filter housing, you have to match those when you re-tighten.
[PICTURE 7 - Oil Filter Wrench]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00814.jpg


Now get under the car.
Open this hatch / trapdoor using your coin. It's just behind the front-center jack point. Remove the hatch so it doesn't interfere when you're undoing the drain bolt.
[PICTURE 6 - Trapdoor / hatch]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00817.jpg


Set the oil drain pan a few inches off to the right of the drain bolt.
Use a 17 mm socket mated to a 1/2" drive to undo the drain bolt. It should come off using hand-power but sometimes it might be set just too tight.
If this is the first (break-in) oil change on your car, then the bolt will have a silver metal washer - don't reuse it.
If the oil has been changed before, then the bolt will have a copper crush washer - don't reuse it.
If the bolt was over torqued by the BMW technician who did your previous oil change, now's the time to put all that gymming to good use.
Be careful - if the wrench slips you will get hurt.
[If you were too lazy to go to the gym, reverse the procedure and just get your car serviced at the dealer. ]
[PICTURE 7 - Drain bolt]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00818.jpg


Once you've got the drain bolt loose, you can unscrew it with your hand and hot black motor oil will flow out. If your calculations were correct, then it'll shoot straight into the Oil Drain Pan.
[If your calculations were incorrect, then you now have a an additional mess to clean-up and maybe some burns. You can see from the picture that I was a little bad at math. Not as bad as aiming for the Moon and landing on Mars but a mess nonetheless.]
[PICTURE 8 - Oil draining into pan]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00820.jpg


While the oil is dripping into the pan, remove the Oil Filter housing, and get the used Oil Filter out. Using the plastic fork pry out the 2 o-rings (big black and small green) on the housing, and replace them with the new o-rings that came with the new Oil Filter. Note the position of the black o-ring. If you position this incorrectly, the housing won't fit back properly onto the engine.
You can use a screw driver or a metal fork too if you wish. Also put that new copper crush washer on to the drain bolt now.
[PICTURE 9 - Oil Filter comparison]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00821.jpg


Pre-wick your nice new Oil Filter. Just pour small amounts of oil directly onto the filter and watch the material soak it up - nice way to pass time as by now you're bored that all this is taking too long.
[PICTURE 10 - Pre-wick]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00822.jpg


When all the oil has drained out replace the drain bolt (with new copper crush washer) and the hatch. Don't over-tighten.
Also replace the Oil Filter housing (with the new Oil Filter and the new o-rings installed). Don't over-tighten.


Pour in the new oil - a funnel helps channel it straight into the engine. You want the oil in your engine, not on it. Rubber hoses and plastic trim will corrode early if engine oil spills on them.
[Some folks pour in 6 quarts (@5.6 litres / 6 bottles), drive around for a bit and then pour in the last bottle but you can pour it all in one go - all's good.]
[PICTURE 10 - Pouring oil]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00824.jpg


When you're done, close the Oil cap, close the hood (bonnet), start your engine and drive car off the ramps.
The new Oil is cooler than the one you got out so let the engine warm up a bit and then check your oil levels.
[PICTURE 11 - Oil level]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00808.jpg
[PICTURE 12 - Oil level - Nav]
DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)-dsc00809.jpg


After a while (maybe half an hour or so) check for any leaks under the car. If there is a puddle, then the drain bolt might not be set properly. Otherwise you're all set.


Thanks for reading!


Due credit to the E90Post.com members whose oil change guides were a tremendous help.

Last edited by aah78 : 26th November 2009 at 05:47.
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Old 26th November 2009, 05:47   #2
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Nice and informative D.I.Y.

I am sure people would be able to save the HEFTY charge of Oil change on such luxury car.
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Old 26th November 2009, 07:48   #3
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Good deal aah!! I just did mine last month. Soaking the filter is a good idea...never tried it. How do you do the oil reset for your ECU?
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Old 27th November 2009, 08:12   #4
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I haven't tried it yet but I read on some other forum that there's a procedure in which you can get in the Service menu and reset it.

The E38 was easy to reset - just had to short a couple of wires under the hood.
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Old 27th November 2009, 09:51   #5
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Excellent thread! You shorted to reset the service mode isnt that dangerous for the ECU?
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Old 27th November 2009, 09:56   #6
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The engine idles at 600rpm?
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Old 27th November 2009, 11:08   #7
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aah78
Nice post. Loved reading it. Keep them coming

Soaking the oil filter with new oil, Interesting! Will try it next time

Quote:
Originally Posted by vid6639 View Post
The engine idles at 600rpm?
Even i was wondering about it.
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Old 27th November 2009, 16:02   #8
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Superb thread Aah!

A nice follow up to your TPMS installation thread (DIY: BERU TPMS sensor install for BMW E90 made easy.).

Though i hope that you checked and double-checked this one!!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aah78
Pre-wick your nice new Oil Filter. Just pour small amounts of oil directly onto the filter
What exactly is the advantage of doing this?

cya
R
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Old 27th November 2009, 23:25   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
Good deal aah!! I just did mine last month. Soaking the filter is a good idea...never tried it. How do you do the oil reset for your ECU?
Good effort by aah78 on changing your car's oil.

the oil filter is always soaked in the new old before fitting in its place! its not a new thing!

i think the DIY thingy works in western countries, not it india, where most owners dont even know how to change a tyre! (im not talking about RFT)!

Last edited by Parm : 27th November 2009 at 23:28.
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Old 28th November 2009, 02:00   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
Excellent thread! You shorted to reset the service mode isnt that dangerous for the ECU?
Jaggu - it's a tried and tested procedure in the older cars.
There was a diagnostic port under the hood that you opened and shorted 2 pins with a piece of wire to reset the oil service indicator.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vid6639 View Post
The engine idles at 600rpm?
Vid & kp - Yep, the car starts at @ 1000 rpm (depending on outside temperature) and finally settles down to 600.

Rehaan - It seems to be an old time tradition to prevent "dry-starting" of an engine.
The reasoning being that as engine oil is meant to pass through the filter before being circulated through the engine, there's a danger of the engine running without any oil for a few moments before any oil begins soaking through a dry oil filter and flowing into the engine. In modern engines I'm not sure think it's something that has to be done as there's a little oil still left in the engine even after draining. No harm in doing it though.

Yes, you bet I double checked this time.
The last time I had 4 brand new tyres wasted - this time the expense could have been even higher.
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Old 26th March 2010, 20:48   #11
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Arrow Service Reset

Found a procedure to reset the service light off YouTube.

There are a bunch of videos on there.

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Old 26th March 2010, 21:28   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rehaan View Post
What exactly is the advantage of doing this?
OT but..
Friend had a RWD 200sx and the manual recomended disconnecting the fuel pump fuse and cranking the engine to pre lube before starting.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parm View Post
the oil filter is always soaked in the new old before fitting in its place! its not a new thing!
OK Boss! I guess the only thing I'm used to doing is to lubing the o ring. Keep in mind the BMW is easy but the spin on ones are pain to do.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vid6639 View Post
The engine idles at 600rpm?
One of the advantages of variable valve lift. (although i doubt the twin turbo has this)

Quote:
Originally Posted by aah78 View Post
Found a procedure to reset the service light off
Thanks man, will check it out.
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Old 9th February 2016, 00:20   #13
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Default Re: DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)

Are those ramps available here? Would love to buy those immediately.
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Old 9th February 2016, 11:54   #14
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Default Re: DIY: Oil Change - BMW E90 (E91, E92, E93)

righty tighty lefty loosey.

I loved this aah78. Very thoughtful.
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