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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Mechanical Maintenance: Break-in / Oil & Fluids / Servicing / Warranty > Lifetime fluid my @$$



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      02-18-2011, 12:31 PM   #23
elp_jc
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Two quick comments: Shouldn't the diff take 75/140??? That's what my M3 V8 calls for, but maybe it's different for the regular 3s.

The most miles I've done on an auto tranny is 30K, and fluid wasn't brown at all. Dark ATF fluid only means one thing; it's DONE. So yes, 'lifetime' fluids don't exist... unless you want that lifetime to be much shorter . And it obviously matters a lot where you live, and how you drive. There's no way a fluid would last 100K where I live, where 3 months of the year is well over 100F. Add track days to that and you'd probably be overhauling your tranny at 50K without a fluid change.
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      02-18-2011, 12:57 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elp_jc View Post
Two quick comments: Shouldn't the diff take 75/140??? That's what my M3 V8 calls for, but maybe it's different for the regular 3s.

The most miles I've done on an auto tranny is 30K, and fluid wasn't brown at all. Dark ATF fluid only means one thing; it's DONE. So yes, 'lifetime' fluids don't exist... unless you want that lifetime to be much shorter . And it obviously matters a lot where you live, and how you drive. There's no way a fluid would last 100K where I live, where 3 months of the year is well over 100F. Add track days to that and you'd probably be overhauling your tranny at 50K without a fluid change.

Your car has limited slip diff. Non-M3's don't so they need 75/90.
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      02-18-2011, 01:47 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hulley View Post
I wonder if the "Lifetime label" has something to do with the EPA. If the manufacturers claim to not need fluid changes then that would imply less impact on the environment. They could get a break from the governments, who knows, I think its BS anyways.
Lifetime means Don't Touch basically!!! Because an inexpirienced independant shop could do such things, that even the manufacturer would die in curiosity - how and why they did such things to the tranny...
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      02-18-2011, 03:27 PM   #26
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I'm not sure about lifetime fluid, but your pictures sure did make me want a cold beer.
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      02-18-2011, 03:56 PM   #27
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Drain your engine oil after 5000 miles.
Black

Put new oil in your engine.
Drain it a week later.
Black

If you want clear looking oil, you'll be changing it every couple days.

Same situation with diff oil, transfer, etc. It all goes black very fast.

-scheherazade
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      02-18-2011, 04:05 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The HACK View Post
Color of the fluid is meaningless, the "color" are basically simple coloring agents and will fade over use.

Unless the fluids are ran through used oil analysis, there's ABSOLUTELY nothing to be drawn from this.
But I could always appreciate the efforts of the OP and fresh fluid.
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      02-18-2011, 04:11 PM   #29
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thanks for the pics, great info.

im glad i wont own the car long enough to care
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      02-18-2011, 04:14 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
Drain your engine oil after 5000 miles.
Black

Put new oil in your engine.
Drain it a week later.
Black

If you want clear looking oil, you'll be changing it every couple days.

Same situation with diff oil, transfer, etc. It all goes black very fast.

-scheherazade
NOT THE SAME SITUATION.

The "black" particles in engine oil is part of the combustion process/byproduct. The oil in the diff/transmission/transfer case etc doesn't go "black" since it shouldn't be mixed with combustion by-product. On my Subaru I changed out the factory diff/tranny fill at 15,000 miles and they look practically brand new.

I still wouldn't use the color of the lubricant as indicator of what condition it's in though. Like I said, the amber/red/green/blue/whatever color these oil came in are just coloring agent. PURE motor oil is almost colorless.

Not that I "condone" BMW's life-time fills, especially when it comes to automatic transmissions. But to really properly identify the actual "wear" on each of these fluids is to have an used oil analysis.
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      02-18-2011, 09:32 PM   #31
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Interesting.
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      02-18-2011, 10:17 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
Drain your engine oil after 5000 miles.
Black

Put new oil in your engine.
Drain it a week later.
Black

If you want clear looking oil, you'll be changing it every couple days.

Same situation with diff oil, transfer, etc. It all goes black very fast.

-scheherazade
True.

Still, I replaced the MTF, diff and coolant in my car at around 100KM and plan to do so at the next 100KM. Cheep insurance IMO. Lifetime fluid makes no sense to me...
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      11-20-2011, 12:20 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
Drain your engine oil after 5000 miles.
Black

Put new oil in your engine.
Drain it a week later.
Black

If you want clear looking oil, you'll be changing it every couple days.

Same situation with diff oil, transfer, etc. It all goes black very fast.

-scheherazade
ever check the oil in a propane engine? oil is clear.

oil in an engine goes black fast because of the exhaust blow by.

if your diff oil is going black fast, there is something on the way out. if your trans fluid is going black fast, there is something burning up.

dark automatic fluid is always something to worry about, especially if it smells burnt.
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