My wife purchased a BMW 335i in November 2011. She pays attention to the monitor and it called for an oil change after 17,000 miles. What are your thoughts on this duration of 17,000 miles?
Leon from Ransomville, N.Y.
High-quality synthetic oil is often used on BMWs as is the case with your wife’s car. The oil life monitor measures engine oil temp, moisture content and combustion chamber events (engine work). By measuring these aspects of engine operation the computer algorithm is able to accurately calculate the engine oil’s serviceable life. Providing you’re using comparable synthetic oil to BMW specs (or BMW oil), I have no problem with this drain interval. If you’re using regular petroleum oil, this could result in premature engine failure.
Tom Torbjornsen is an automotive expert of 37 years. An automotive journalist in good standing with the IMPA (International Motor Press Association) and MPG (Motor Press Guild), Torbjornsen is the Repair and Maintenance Editor for AOL Autos, At Home Portals and many other websites. Hear his radio show. America’s Car Show, on the SSI Radio Network Saturdays at 8 a.m. Listen to the show on the live stream during regular show times at www.americascarshow.com. Send your car questions to his website at www.americascarshow.com. You can also find Tom’s book, “How To Make Your Car Last Forever,” in local Barnes & Nobel booksellers, or order online at Amazon.com.