BMW Engine oil At Minimum Level Issues & How to Test BMW Oil Level Sensor

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Is your BMW engine oil at minimum level? What can you do about it? Well, in this post we are going to look at all about BMW engine oil at minimum level.

So we will be discussing and responding to some of the common questions on BMW oil level like how to test BMW oil level sensor, where is the BMW oil level sensor location and how does BMW oil level sensor work.

Also, we will provide the answer to this frequent question: “what oil does my BMW car need?” while discussing the Symptoms of a Bad Low Oil Level Sensor for BMW Related Article:How to Change, Cost & Where to Buy BMW i3 12V Battery

BMW Engine Oil At Minimum Level Issues & How to Test BMW Oil Level Sensor

BMW cars are equipped with electronic engine oil level monitoring sensor that irradiates, and this light does not necessarily mean your oil needs to be changed that is a common misreading amongst BMW owners. When this light comes on, it means your engine oil is at least 1 quart/liter low.

There are three possible factors that may cause the light to irradiate:

  • oil leaks
  • oil consumption that cause oil loss
  • Defective oil level sensors common on older models

Some BMW owners have noticed a warning light come on for the engine level when their BMW engine oil is at minimum level.

When this is noticed, they begin to wonder if they should take their car to a dealer for a top off, or if they can simply buy 1 quart of BMW engine oil and top it up themselves.

Oil level tends to drop between changes with BMW’s factory overstretched oil change interval. The rate of oil consumption is typical for any engine in different amounts. Normally, BMW holds a 1 quart/liter per 1,000miles maximum for normal oil consumption; a value that is still high on consumption. However, with the newer turbo charged BMW engine, the rate of oil consumption has increased further due to higher pressure of cylinder.

It got to the extent that BMW released a service bulletin for the F01, F02, F06, F10, F12, F13, E70, and E71 fitted with the N63 & N63T, increasing the oil fill/top off amount to lengthen the amount of time before low oil level light comes on.

A BMW driver who notices the low oil warning light, they should use Mobil 1 Extended 5W30 Full Synthetic oil for topping off. If the low oil light comes on and your BMW doesn’t have a measuring stick, then add 1 quart/liter of oil and recheck oil level indicator through the instrument cluster/iDrive. However, if your BMW has a measuring stick or a dipstick, you can visually confirm proper fill level and add oil.

Symptoms of a Bad Low Oil Level Sensor for BMW

The main thing that keeps your engine running strong for thousands of miles is the oil.

All combustion engines, including those of BMW, need a specific amount of oil that will circulate through the engine to ensure the metal parts are properly lubricated irrespective of the type of motor.

Metal components will heat, break and in the long run cause severe damage inside the motor to render it unworkable.

The aim of fixing the oil level sensor is to warn drivers that their engines need extra motor oil to function properly.

The oil level sensor is positioned inside the oil pan, and its main job is to measure the amount of oil inside the pan before the engine is started.

The low oil level will trigger a warning light indicator on the dashboard, which will light up the check engine light.

However, it can wear out or send wrong data to the engine control unit (ECU), since it’s exposed to extreme heat and harsh conditions.

Failure of the oil level sensor will trigger an alert or error code inside the ECU and warn the driver that there’s a problem.

However, there are other warning signs to indicate a problem with the oil level sensor.

Let’s look at some major symptoms of a failing or bad oil level sensor

1. Oil Light comes on frequently

This is one potential indicator that there’s a problem with your oil level sensor. You will notice that the light comes on intermittently.

The oil level sensor should normally come on as soon as you start your motor, and as the data is collected while the motor is turned off.

But when your BMW car is in motion and this warning light comes on and has started for a while, it could mean the sensor is bad, failing, or damaged.

This warning sign could also point to a problem with the pressure of the engine oil. It could even indicate that the oil lines are clogged by debris.

2. Check Engine Light comes on

If the oil level sensor is functioning properly, the oil light will be triggered to come on your vehicle when the oil level is low.

It’s also common for it to activate the check engine light if the sensor is damaged or defective.

Consult the services of an experienced mechanic when the check engine light comes on.

3. Inaccurate oil reading

The oil level sensor warns the driver that the engine is low on oil inside the crankcase. However, when the sensor is faulty, it may incorrectly activate this information.

Most BMW car owners check their oil level manually after the alert is shown on the dashboard. If the oil on the dipstick is above the “add” line, it means that the oil sensor is broken or that there’s a problem where the sensor system is.

This symptom should never be disregarded because low oil pressure or blockage in the lines can lead to complete engine failure.

Contact a local mechanic when you notice this issue to avoid damage to the components of the internal engine.

4. Car does not start

The oil level sensor is intended to be an alert only device. However, faulty data from the sensor may trigger the incorrect error code and trigger the ECU of the engine not to allow the engine to start.

In this case, it is advisable to call a mechanic to detect why your engine refuses to start. Your mechanic should download this error code and fix the issue by replacing the oil level sensor

Every time you start your engine, always ensure that your engine has proper levels of oil, pressure and that the oil is clean.

If you notice any of the above symptoms, you’re your mechanic for a proper check to avoid causing additional damage to your engine.

With these in mind let’s look at how to test BMW oil level sensor

How to Test BMW oil Level Sensor

You can test the oil level sensor of a BMW car using an Innova 3310 Digital Multimeter, which you can this on Amazon. The sensor has 3 prongs and someone who doesn’t have a knowledge of how to take the readings may not be able to test it. Maybe someone is kind enough to explain when you would test something for Resistance

There s/b, a finite resistance between pins 1 and 2 and the sensor may still be faulty even with this reading. The TIS method mentions the use of BMW computers DIS or MoDIC. The test procedure for the BMW oil level sensor measures the sensor’s cool-down time.

If the dipstick indicates full, and you’re getting a Low Oil reading, replace the sensor. It may require you to drain the oil, and replace the O-ring.

Continuity doesn’t measure resistance, it is used to check if a circuit is continuous, and not broken. For instance, it is used to check an electrical fuse to confirm if it is really blown.

Resistance on the other hand measures the impeding current flow. The resistance element heats the sensor in the case of the level sensor.

To check if a diode is defective, you use the diode test. One polarity measures the junction voltage, and the other displays nothing, this indicates that the diode is functioning.

Note on How to Test BMW oil Level Sensor

Always check oil level with dipstick and don’t assume the sensor is faulty and forget to check the dipstick. Also, the oil level sensor usually has an open circuit, meaning when the oil level is good, the resistance across the pins is infinity. So linking the connector does not always work because this creates a “Low Oil Condition”. Disconnect the sensor instead.

BMW have currently eliminated oil level dipstick and have replaced it with a sensor in the oil pan. The sensor is to alert you if the oil level drops below the safe level inside the oil-pan. The engineers who designed the engines calculated the amount.

BMW designed it in such a way that you can drive your car 15,000 miles before changing the engine oil and without using your transmission oil. You can run out of oil in your oil-pan at every 8,000 miles. This is about half the recommended interval of 15,000-mile oil change.

How Does the BMW Oil Level Sensor Work?

The BMW oil level sensor uses the lower capacitor to measure the quality of the oil and the upper capacitor is used to determine the level of the oil. The dielectric sensor measures the dielectric value of the oil against a dielectric constant value to decide the level of contamination of the oil.

Mechanical dipsticks to check the oil level sensor on BMW are direct-read devices, meaning, the level of the engine oil in the crankcase is determined by the presence of oil on the dipstick. The e-dipstick device takes data and data analysis to decide the oil level. This means that it takes time to determine the oil level.

The oil must be at the operating temperature before you can obtain an accurate oil level reading. This is one of the reasons the OZS has a temperature sensor built into it and the engine must have been in operation for a minimal time period and gone through a succession of operational parameters to ensure oil has moved all through the lubrication system while the engine is running. The engine operating temperature must be above a minimum of 140 deg. F.

The engine speed must have reach greater than 1,000 RPM, and the engine must have reached acceleration levels transverse and longitudinal of greater than 12 – 15 feet per-second squared. It takes 5 minutes to reach these parameters and the e-dipstick will not provide a measurement until the time is reached. This is the reason why a small clock symbol appears in the e-dipstick window with no reading, if the engine is cold. The e-dipstick updates to a new level reading once the time and other parameters are met. The engine computer monitors the oil level continuously and updates the e-dipstick display every 20 minutes.

What Oil Does my BMW Car Need?

If You are always confused as to which oil to oil to use for your BMW car, well I will advise you stick to BMW recommended oil and below are the top 2 BMW recommended oil to get for your car.

The 2 BMW recommendations are:

  1. Pennzoil Synthetic Motor oil
  2. BMW Twinpower 5W30 Synthetic

Pennzoil Synthetic Motor oil

This oil, which is produced from natural gas, keeps pistons about 65 percent cleaner than what is obtainable by the industry standard. Pennzoil oil also produces better protection from friction. Another outstanding quality of Pennzoil synthetic motor oil that gives it an edge over others is that it provides faster low-temperature oil flow, which protects the engine from extreme heat and protects the engine from loss of power.

You can buy Pennzoil Synthetic Motor oil on Amazon

BMW Twinpower 5W30 Synthetic

BMW Company specifically formulated this oil for BMW engines and has active cleansing technology. BMW Twinpower oil, unlike other synthetic oils, can withstand heat and cold. This oil helps preserve your engine in the best possible condition and can bear great engine loads and boosts protection and performance for both turbocharged and non-turbocharged engines.

You can buy BMW Twinpower 5W30 Synthetic on Amazon

However, you may be using oil that meets BMW specification, ensure you check for details properly.

Other oils that meets BMW specifications include:

Where is the Location for the BMW Oil Sensor?

BMW models use an oil condition sensor located in the oil pan. This sensor is responsible for supplying oil level and oil condition information to the vehicle computer system.

BMW E90 models mostly use this sensor in place of a dipstick to check the oil level.

You can also monitor the oil level through the driver information centre. 

The sensor is susceptible to failure because it can develop electrical faults and it can also leak oil.

When it develops electrical issues, the driver will notice a yellow oil warning light on the instrument panel.

If a yellow oil warning light illumes on your instrument panel, then you have to shut the engine off and level of engine oil. The sensor may have failed if you notice that the oil level is OK and the warning light is ON. The DME or engine control module will likely have a fault code for the defective sensor.

You should use a container to drain and catch dripping engine oil when servicing. Have rags to properly clean any engine oil that is spilt and always use gloves and

I hope this post has helped you with your BMW engine oil at minimum level concerns and you were able to see how to test BMW oil level sensor and know where your BMW oil level sensor location is.

I am sure you now know what oil your BMW car needs and how BMW oil level sensor work

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