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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 > LL04 oil - time to switch away from Mobil 1 ??



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      07-31-2005, 03:55 AM   #1
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LL04 oil - time to switch away from Mobil 1 ??

I've always used Mobil 1 in my Bimmers, but after doing a bit of research I think its time to switch. Of course E90fleet nails it - LL04 is the spec level for an oil to meet for finding BMW happiness. ('LL' standing for 'Long Life'.)

If you want to use Mobil 1 the 0-40W will get you to LL01 - still approved, and there's ELF Excellium LDX 5W40, also LL01, but otherwise, its Castrol Syntec 0-30W Made in Germany to hit the LL04 spec.

When I looked at the Castrol USA site, they did not yet have info on the LL04 mix but Castrol Deutschland does. The BITOG site suggests its not that hard to find the Syntec 0-30W.

Here are some more links:

The BMW seal of approval - ELF

Is BMW 0w-40 Castrol Formula RS or Pentosin

European Castrol for BMWs and Minis?


What think you? Time to switch from Mobil 1 to something else?
.
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      07-31-2005, 08:57 AM   #2
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Read the "Service and Warrenty" book

On page 4. it states that other than the BMW spec oil, only Mobil 1 (5W-30 and 5W-40) is approved.

Additional oils may be approved at a later time.

Mobil 1 has worked for me, I see no reason to change.
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      07-31-2005, 01:46 PM   #3
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"Mobil 1 Low Emmision Formula 5W-30 " is LL04 approved

But LL01 is approved for most of the E90 engines
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      07-31-2005, 02:26 PM   #4
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I'll guess that Mobil 1 Low Emission Formula 5W-30 is what Mobil calls "Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 " originally developed for diesel engines. (ESP for "Emission System Protection") Doesn't seem to be available yet in the US.

According to ExxonMobil UK "BMW approved Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 according to their newest LL-04 specification. This specification covers the former LL-98 and LL-01 specs and Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 is therefore suitable for today's gasoline and diesel engine including DPF technology and is also backwards compatible, in line with service fill recommendations, offering dealers and motorists alike a streamlined choice of engine lubricant. .... It conforms to the new ‘ACEA C3’ category of Low Emission products recently introduced by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA), as well as the existing ACEA A3, B3 and B4 categories."

All that post dates the Service & Warranty book.

As best as I can tell Mobil 1 0W-40 is their only LL01 oil available to the US.
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      07-31-2005, 02:27 PM   #5
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Quote:
What think you? Time to switch from Mobil 1 to something else?
I would not use the Mobil 1 5W30, because it is on the thin side when at operating temp, read all about oil at
HTML Code:
www.bobistheoilguy.com
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      07-31-2005, 03:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smithex
I would not use the Mobil 1 5W30, because it is on the thin side when at operating temp, read all about oil at
HTML Code:
www.bobistheoilguy.com
Well just about every new BMW comes with 5W-30 ( mostly M models that dont )
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      07-31-2005, 04:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Well just about every new BMW comes with 5W-30 ( mostly M models that dont )
Mobil 1’s 5W30 weight at operating temp is different than the 5W30 BMW Castrol oil at operating temp. You can learn a lot about oil on bobistheoilguy site.
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      07-31-2005, 04:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smithex
Mobil 1’s 5W30 weight at operating temp is different than the 5W30 BMW Castrol oil at operating temp. You can learn a lot about oil on bobistheoilguy site.
The new Mobil 1 5W30 is one of the few LL04 oils out there ( or are you talking about some other one ? )

Also which of the 4 main operating temps are you talking about ?
80'C, 112'C, 105'C,95'C ????
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      07-31-2005, 05:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
I'll guess that Mobil 1 Low Emission Formula 5W-30 is what Mobil calls "Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 " originally developed for diesel engines. (ESP for "Emission System Protection") Doesn't seem to be available yet in the US.

According to ExxonMobil UK "BMW approved Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 according to their newest LL-04 specification. This specification covers the former LL-98 and LL-01 specs and Mobil 1 ESP Formula 5W-30 is therefore suitable for today's gasoline and diesel engine including DPF technology and is also backwards compatible, in line with service fill recommendations, offering dealers and motorists alike a streamlined choice of engine lubricant. .... It conforms to the new ‘ACEA C3’ category of Low Emission products recently introduced by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA), as well as the existing ACEA A3, B3 and B4 categories."

All that post dates the Service & Warranty book.

As best as I can tell Mobil 1 0W-40 is their only LL01 oil available to the US.
.
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      07-31-2005, 06:22 PM   #10
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E90fleet - do you know if BMW's LL04 is tied to use of diesel particulate filters (DPF) needed to meet lower emission standards for W. Europe in 2005 and for US in 2007? I don't know enough about the technology - can petrol based cars use DPF? Or would BMW be trying to get to single standard (LL04) for oil, across both diesel and petrol?

Perhaps seeing a non diesel BMW replacement oil filter (11427541827) would tell the tale as a DPF filter could be ceramic or sintered metal instead of fiber?? Sorry - I have more questions than answers.
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      08-01-2005, 03:33 AM   #11
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Yes, the LL04 requirement is largely due to the new diesel regulations, but there are benefits for petrol engines aswell

BMW has been using the same oil in petrol and diesel cars since at least LL01

The diesel particulate filter is actually in the exhaust, and filters particles from the airstream
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      08-24-2005, 06:21 PM   #12
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Another interesting thread from the BITOG site:
http://theoildrop.server101.com/ubb/...c;f=1;t=011180
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Last edited by tima; 08-24-2005 at 11:49 PM.
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      10-27-2005, 10:49 PM   #13
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Is the BMW branded oil in the United States Castrol TXT 5W-30 LL01?
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      10-27-2005, 11:22 PM   #14
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I like Mobil 1. A lot.
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      10-28-2005, 08:23 AM   #15
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German Castrol (GC) has shown time and time again to be an outstanding oil, so much so infact it has it's own forum on BITOG.
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      10-28-2005, 09:58 AM   #16
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A friend of mine recommended Torco Racing Oil. He claims is smoother and feels better in gear shifting. Any comments?

Thank you in advance
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      08-03-2007, 09:12 AM   #17
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Stick with Mobil 1

BMW has completed significant research on the best oil for its cars. It was able to get Mobil 1 to modify is formula to best fit BMW's needs. It is easy to get caught up in the dis-information about what oil is best. In my mind I'll stick with BMW's decision to use Mobil 1.

Mobil-1-Truck-and-SUV-5W-30-Gasoline-Engines
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      08-03-2007, 08:30 PM   #18
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just fyi: in the 328i 07 manual it lists the bmw 5w30 and mobil1 0w40 are approved - no mention of mobil1 5-30\40...
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      08-04-2007, 03:16 PM   #19
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Sorry for being a newb but LL-04 > LL-01? because Tier 1 gas station is better than Tier 2 so I am very confused haha.
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      10-20-2008, 09:07 PM   #20
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The 3251 owners manual states that you can use mobil1 5w-30 and 5w-40. but in my recent oil change the shop put in 10w-30. Is this a bad thing or not? Should have them change it right away or can i wait until my next oil change in 5k more miles.
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      10-21-2008, 04:44 PM   #21
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Exclamation LL-04 are only for Europe

From BMW Technical Information system. Approved oils for N54 engines:

1. LL-01
2. LL-01FE
3. LL-04 ("Longlife-04 oils are only approved for spark-ignition engines in Europe (EU+Switzerland, Norway and Liechtenstein). They must not be used outside this area as problems are often encountered with fuel quality").

That leaves LL-01 and LL-01FE as recommended oils in the US, of which I wouldn't use FE since they are low-viscosity oils.
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      10-23-2008, 07:26 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invariant View Post
From BMW Technical Information system. Approved oils for N54 engines:

1. LL-01
2. LL-01FE
3. LL-04 ("Longlife-04 oils are only approved for spark-ignition engines in Europe (EU+Switzerland, Norway and Liechtenstein). They must not be used outside this area as problems are often encountered with fuel quality").

That leaves LL-01 and LL-01FE as recommended oils in the US, of which I wouldn't use FE since they are low-viscosity oils.

Are you sure about not using LL-04 in the States? Some LL-04 formulas are sold here and a certified BMW shop in my area uses ELF Solaris LL-04 for their oil changes. There seems to be a lot of conflicting info about LL-04 and if it is safe for our cars.
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