TECH-TIP #2: Guess what this tip is on?
At 67,156 it is time for an oil service for my Z. Since Iím out of warranty I do my own routine maintenance. What follows are the procedures to change your own oil.
First I would like to give you my opinions on the frequency of oil
changes. The Service lights cycle off at about 9,000 miles intervals on my
96 1.9. Newer Zís that have synthetic oil from the factory have a longer
interval than the earlier Zís, between 12,000 and 15,000. I feel that the
9,000 mile interval is a little high for the type of driving I do.
Since I use synthetic oil I feel that a 3,000 miles change interval
is to often and 9,000 is not often enough. I change my oil at a 5,000 miles
interval. With modern engines, oil last longer than in the old days. Two
major causes oil contamination are, inefficient combustion, and compression
blow by. Since we get the
benefits on fuel injection, electronic engine controls, and modern
materials, there is less contamination. These are my opinions and in no way
a recommendation for anyone else. Please do your own research and decide for
Tools and supplies needed: appropriate quantity of oil, correct oil
filter with o-rings, medium zip lock bag, miscellaneous wrenches, optional
TopSider siphon pump, jack, jack stands, and ramps.
We all know how hard it is to
jack the Z up from the front without ramps. I use an oil siphon tank called
a TopSider. The TopSider alleviates the need to jack the Z up.
Start the engine and let it idle
until the temp gauge just starts to move then turn it off.
The TopSider is pumped into a vacuum (about 60 strokes on the pump).
Then remove the dipstick and insert the TopSiderís hose into the dipstick
tube, unclip the tube clip and the oil is sucked up.
If you choose to drain the oil the more traditional way by jacking the front end up, make sure that you place the jack stands correctly at the jacking points on the side of the Z
The oil filter on all Zís is
located on the front drivers side of the engine. There are different filter
covers for the different engines so I wonít go into much detail on how to
remove it. The nice thing about current BMWís is that they use a cartridge
oil filter, and is able to be changed from under the hood rather than from
below the car. I use a BMW filter, they are inexpensive and come with all
o-rings for the filter and drain plug.
I turn the Ziplock bag inside
out and slip it on my hand. Grasp the old oil filter and remove it.
Fold the Ziplock back over the
Filter is now ready for
Most auto parts stores now
accept your old oil and filter for recycling. I use the local
Next step would be to reset the
Service Indicator Light. That will be next months tip.
I know that I left out some
steps. Like removing the TopSider tube when oil is totally out of sump,
replacing the oil filter housing cover, etc. These are fairly self evident,
therefore not included.
For more info contact
Jeff Newton - Webmaster