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Old 23rd April 2009, 22:44   #1
Dylan Thomas
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The Old School Maintenance Schedule for our M5s

~~
I wrote Mike Miller, BMW CCA Roundel Magazine Technical Editor, for their old school Maintenance Schedule, used before BMW started their "Free Maintenance."

For those of you who plan on keeping their beasts past warranty, Mike recommends you follow a specific schedule. You can email Mike Miller to get a copy of that schedule, at: auspuf2002@aol.com

I recently asked my S.A. about a 30,000 SMG & differential change. He replied BMW recommends 60,000 for Motorsport cars. Mike replies: "BMW interval for gearbox and differential oil changes is every 60,000 miles. If you plan on keeping the car past the warranty, I would recommend 30,000-mile intervals for both."
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Old 24th April 2009, 19:51   #2
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As a side observation, I was at the dealer yesterday getting MAF sensor changed, and since I am friends with the techs, I hang in the shop with them. There was a 3 series getting its oil changed as per the BMW 15k mile schedule. The tech working on it showed me the inside of the oil cap. There was thick sludge in the cap. He told me that the sludge was a common site for cars that follow the 15k mile oil change interval. Also, he told me that the oil filters get hard and brittle from all the hear cycling and are essentially worthless. For my M5, he confirmed that an oil change every 5k miles was the right thing to do.
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Old 25th April 2009, 00:06   #3
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Question

Good info guys, thanks!

Dylan, did your question to Mike specify SMG?

I've gotten answers all over the map from dealers and independents regarding the right thing to do by the SMG with regards to the manual - (change often) and auto - (don't change until there's a problem) debate.

It seems that since not many are out of warranty yet, people are fairly confused.
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Old 25th April 2009, 04:17   #4
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Originally Posted by Globemaster View Post
Good info guys, thanks!

Dylan, did your question to Mike specify SMG?

I've gotten answers all over the map from dealers and independents regarding the right thing to do by the SMG with regards to the manual - (change often) and auto - (don't change until there's a problem) debate.

It seems that since not many are out of warranty yet, people are fairly confused.
I wrote Mike asking his opinion of my M5's long term durability, as my Beast has the dubious distinction of spending more time in the shop during the first 2.5 years of ownership, than any other owned over 40 years of driving. This includes two (SMG) clutch rebuilds during the first ~16,000 miles. I've previously gotten ~80K out of previous manual clutches and have been told (not by Mike) that the metal alloys used in our SMGs are not up to city driving. If I'm not mistaken, the same clutch is used in both SMG and 6-speed models.

I usually buy new and keep for 8 -10 years, following the "severe use" service schedule, until reliability becomes an issue. Extended warranties are a poor deal for low mileage drivers like me, as most parts wear out from mileage, not age, rubber parts and some fluids the exception. I will be paying for all upkeep after the initial warranty ends.

If you read Mike's column, he shares my extended warranty views. If you'll drive most of the miles covered in BMW's extended warranty, during the coverage period, it might be worth the cost. Otherwise the coverage will expire long before you've gotten your money's worth. As I'm putting ~8,500 miles annually on mine, it makes sense to self insure instead.

If you're still undecided, I'd suggest that you hold off buying the extra coverage until the last year of initial warranty, and calculate the dollar amount of service your beast consumed, multiplying the number of labor hours BMW paid, by your dealership's hourly rate. Part's prices can be obtained through either the dealer's part's dept. or aftermarket sources. This information will be listed on your warranty invoices and should give you an idea of what your Beast will cost to keep running on a yearly basis.

Mike characterized the E60 M5 as "the first extremely complicated and totally electronic BMW, and one with 500 hp." I asked him about clutch and SMG, he replied the clutch will wear out quickly in stop-and-go urban driving.

Concerning gearbox and differential service intervals, Mike said, "Your service adviser is correct that the BMW interval for gearbox and differential oil changes is every 60,000 miles. If you plan on keeping the car past the warranty, I would recommend 30,000-mile intervals for both."

Mike added, as an owner of a 2006 model, BMW's warranty has insulated me from paying for 1st year production teething pains and he's thinking the car will be pretty well sorted out by the time it falls off warranty. "That is not to say, though, that it's going to be an inexpensive ownership experience; no BMW is after the warranty, and that's doubly true for M cars."

I asked him about the possibility of service manual becoming available after the E60 line ceases production. He replied, " don't expect a publicly-available factory BMW shop manual for any model ever again. We are very lucky if we get a Bentley manual at some point, but I really wouldn't expect one to cover the E60 M5. You can access the factory BMW service manuals for a fee at BMW TIS EPA but BMW has almost zero technical service information that is specific to the M engines or the M drivetrain. There are no diagnostics. Technicians are left to figure M engines out by themselves. Even if there were diagnostics, you wouldn't get anywhere without the BMW diagnostic computer. The computer is actually required to perform a full engine oil change on the S85 V10, because all the oil pumps have to be cycled to achieve a complete drain." (Emphasis added.)

Our M5s are wonderful cars to drive, but like any halo car, not cheap to maintain.

P.S. The 10W-60 Castrol in my beast is changed every 7,500 miles, regardless of who pays. Because the system holds ~9.3 liters, it will hold more contaminants in suspension, the relatively small oil filter is the limiting factor.

If the oil change comes out of your pocket, have the dealership NOT reset the oil mileage sensor system. It will continue monitoring and the next change will be on BMW's dime. Over ~22,500 miles, I've paid for one change and BMW the rest.

Last edited by Dylan Thomas; 25th April 2009 at 04:28.
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Old 25th April 2009, 18:19   #5
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WOW great info! thank you!
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Old 25th April 2009, 18:38   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylan Thomas View Post
you wouldn't get anywhere without the BMW diagnostic computer. The computer is actually required to perform a full engine oil change on the S85 V10, because all the oil pumps have to be cycled to achieve a complete drain." (Emphasis added.)

.
Thank you Dylan for taking the time for this info, backs up what alot think and are doing allready.

Interesting point for 'Indy shop' oil changes but guess as most will be a interim change the few pints left won't hurt.

Jay
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Old 25th April 2009, 20:26   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylan Thomas View Post
...The computer is actually required to perform a full engine oil change on the S85 V10, because all the oil pumps have to be cycled to achieve a complete drain."
This is not true
The engine should be allowed to idle for one minute, and the oil will transfer to the main oil pan.

http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/e60...-pictures.html
Tischer BMW/getBMWparts.com - E60 M5 and non-M Oil Change Kits!!!
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Old 25th April 2009, 21:43   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clyde View Post
This is not true
The engine should be allowed to idle for one minute, and the oil will transfer to the main oil pan.

http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/e60...-pictures.html
Tischer BMW/getBMWparts.com - E60 M5 and non-M Oil Change Kits!!!
The information I quoted is directly from Mike Miller, BMW CCA Roundel Magazine Technical Editor. If you disagree, I suggest you contact him at techtalk@roundel.org . When writing, include your full name, address, model and mileage. Mike will reply, usually within 24 hours. I'll be interested in hearing his reply to your inquiry, post it here.

Simply because an aftermarket supplier sells an "oil change kit", does not mean the task can be fully completed without cycling all the oil pumps. Its your beast, if you believe idling the engine for one minute will transfer all the used oil to the main oil pan, remember there are two pans, go ahead and do it.

I dislike BMW's policy of keeping knowledge about Motorsport vehicle maintenance in a black hole, strictly a policy designed to generate revenue flow for dealers and BMW parts. Luckily some independent shops also own the BMW diagnostic computer and can do the job at a lower rate.

I'm hoping after the E60 line ceases production, someone other than Steve Dinan will crack BMW's encryption scheme, allowing both operating system diagnostics, software settings modification and performing maintenance/repairs using laptop based software.
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Old 25th April 2009, 22:03   #9
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Originally Posted by ur20v View Post
Thank you Dylan for taking the time for this info, backs up what alot think and are doing allready.

Interesting point for 'Indy shop' oil changes but guess as most will be a interim change the few pints left won't hurt.

Jay
I don't know about independent shops in the UK, in my area several independent shops own the BMW diagnostic computer.

You're probably right about leaving a few pints during an interim change won't hurt the S85 engine. IMO I'd still have a complete fluid exchange every 2 - 3 changes. Depends on your driving conditions and interval between changes.

Its a shame BMW didn't specify a larger oil filter or multiple filter setup. This would lengthen the time between changes and keep the internals cleaner.

As an experiment, NYC taxi companies installed multiple oil filter systems and ran their cabs for extended periods between oil changes. Comparison of used oil and internal engine wear between extended run and standard frequency cabs showed indeed the multiple filter setups did allow longer periods between changes and less internal part's wear in the process.

Modern synthetic oils do last significantly longer than traditional petroleum based oil, provide more friction protection and can hold more contaminants in suspension, problem is eventually the oil needs cleaning before its worn out and BMW's stock filter is IMO too small for a 5 liter engine. Have you seen one? Its tiny, about the size I'd expect on a 4 cylinder engine.
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Old 25th April 2009, 22:36   #10
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Quote:
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Its your beast, if you believe idling the engine for one minute will transfer all the used oil to the main oil pan, remember there are two pans, go ahead and do it.
I have changed the oil myself 4 times following the BMW procedure:
S85 V10 oil level service bulletin

Part of the procedure is to re-fill with only 8 liters and wait for an oil level measurement, this way there is no chance of overfilling. I have always needed to add an additional liter. The level after adding the 9th liter is 0.8 or 0.9
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