1999 BMW 328i (E46) – Oil Change & Oil Level Sensor Replacement

So hey guys, now after temporarily fixing the coolant hoses we were able to proceed with an oil change and a replacement of the oil level sensor which needed replacing as well. This video was actually my first real oil change (at least one that I mostly did myself) and is meant to be a “mostly helpful” diy although it ended up taking longer than originally expected due to a little snag with the oil filter. The oil level sensors on these cars tend to die every so often (like most things on 20+ year old cars) and when they do you’ll get a yellow oil light pop up for around 20 seconds when you start the car. In any case, it’s not a challenging change. You will need to remove the plastic skid plate on the bottom of the car before you can access it (but I believe you need to remove it for the oil change as well). Since the plate on this car had a few broken plastic clips, we removed it shortly after buying the car and we’ll leave it off indefinitely. The process of changing this sensor is a bit different on the coupes, and my linked video to ShopLifeTV’s rendition of this replacement covers the differences.

So the oil filter. While we new the car was a few thousand kilometers overdue (the next service sticker on the windshield had 298 000 km, not 294 k as mentioned in the video and we were just above 299 000 km when we filmed this in early March, 2021), the oil had evidently been in the car for quite some time. Generally an oil change should be done at minimum once a year or at the recommended service intervals (in most cars it ends up around 8-10 thousand km but for these BMW’s it’s supposedly around 15 000 km with the LL-01 oil). Anyway, the car hadn’t been serviced for a good amount of time before we bought it to have the oil filter end up in the condition it was when we changed it. We used Penzoil Platinum 5W-30 oil, which is a very popular oil and a fair bit cheaper than Liquid Moly, which I believe is the OEM oil brand for these cars. Since I’m planning to use the car only in the summer and I highly doubt I’ll exceed 8000 km a season, the LL-01 designation isn’t that important for me as I will be preforming an oil change before parking the car each fall. This oil might actually meet that standard, but I can’t say I spent a particularly long time checking, I figured running the same synthetic oil as I do in the Cruze (Dexos 1 Gen 2 standard) would be good for this car as well. Anyways, we’ll have more BMW content where we tackled a cooling system overhaul in July, and then after that we have a few little but important things left to do and then we can take it for a safety! Thank you for watching! 🙂

ShopLifeTV video for a diy on replacing the Oil Level Sensor: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tfrhfwJ45k

Toque Values:
Oil Drain Plug: 18 ft-lbs (24 Nm)
Oil Level Sensor Nuts: 5 ft-lbs (7 Nm) – this is the value we used, not officially documented in service manual
Oil Filter Housing: 18 ft-lbs (25Nm)