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Thread: Need Advice on how to proceed with an oil consumption problem with my BMW.

  1. #16
    Registered User kgadley01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrylRi View Post
    How often do you top up your oil?

    I ask because some bikes don't like to be completely full. They will burn off some oil, perhaps down to the center of the site glass, and then stop. If your bike is one of these, and you top up every time you see the oil below the top line, you may just be burning that off.
    This was my thoughts exactly. many motors like to be just a bit low. 1/2 a quart low on your bike should be acceptable.
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  2. #17
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    I agree with this. I've even run race motors of different types low deliberately to help with oil control.

    Run it at the low side of the sight glass deliberately and see what happens.

    Also, get in the habit of letting your bike sit on the centerstand overnight and check after it cools down so you get reproducible readings.

  3. #18
    n00B
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    Quote Originally Posted by 23217 View Post
    According to NYS State Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, General Business Law 180-a (Lemon Laws) cover ALL motor vehicles, excluding exclusive off-road vehicles and commercial vehicles. So yes, NYS Lemon Laws DO cover motorcycles. But, I don't know which state you have your motorcycle registered in, so I can't comment on your particular situation and potential remedies.

    Your only duty is to inform the dealer that you have a problem. The fact that your dealer refuses to do a simple and inexpensive test to determine what type of mechanical problem your bike has, doesn't alleviate him from his legal duties in the future. Even if your bike is out of warranty it doesn't erase his duty if it is later learned that there is a problem at the time you reported it. The Lemon Law still applies, if your registration state has one. Almost all states have Warranty Laws, and this would probably fall under that provision.

    If your dealer is so good, he would have taken 5 minutes to do a compression test and write the results down on your work order to protect you in the future. Over the past 40 years I have had countless BMW dealers, and they always went out of their way to protect me and make me happy. Of course, you could buy a compression tester for $25 and determine what type of mechanical problem you have on your own.

    You are free to attempt to get your dealer to be reasonable. From what you have posted, he appears to be defiant and unreasonable in determining what the problem is and resolving it reasonably. He has taken some specific actions to stone-wall you. Not sure why he would chance his position now.

    I wish you good luck in getting your problem resolved.
    Lemon Laws in my state cover only light trucks and cars. Message is sent to you as to what State I'm in


    Quote Originally Posted by DarrylRi View Post
    How often do you top up your oil?

    I ask because some bikes don't like to be completely full. They will burn off some oil, perhaps down to the center of the site glass, and then stop. If your bike is one of these, and you top up every time you see the oil below the top line, you may just be burning that off.

    When I first went to the dealer I was topping the oil off to the top of the sight glass. That way I didn't have to top off the oil every freaking day or every other day. Since then the dealer has been doing the oil consumption tests. This is where I drive the bike to the dealer (an hour away) when the light comes on or when it gets low.

    They measure how much oil goes into the bike and record the mileage and find out how much oil it has burned. Now obviously when the light is on and steady I record the mileage myself and fill the oil to the middle of the sight glass. If I top off the oil to the top of the sight glass or only go halfway it doesn't change the rate of consumption.

    Also the bike goes on the center stand at night regardless if I'm on or off road. It only sits on the side stand while at work, if I go in somewhere to grab a bite to eat and things like that.

  4. #19
    Registered User der verge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 23217 View Post
    What state do you live in? Some states, like New York, have Lemon Laws. For example, if you go back to the dealer 4 times for the same problem, they must provide you with a new vehicle. You might check with your state government to see if this is a possible avenue for a reasonable remedy.

    I agree with Paul. Get a compression test and a leak-down test. Whatever you do don't let your dealer do this. Get a good independent mechanic to do it. If you don't know one, ask people on-line. Most oil consumption problems usually comes from the rings or valve guides. Both are usually easy to fix. A scratch in the cylinder can also cause this problem. But, a scratch usually comes from a broken ring. If you finally do find the problem, make sure you post pictures and the story. Everyone would want to know if BMW caused the problem and then refused to fix it.

    Your oil consumption is FAR from normal and BMW and your dealer knows it too. If you belong to a local club, let them know your story. That way they will educated about a lousy dealer.

    Oh yeah...find another dealer. Your dealer sucks! Always remember that the customer is always right, and even when the customer is wrong, they are still right. Don't let BMW or your lousy dealer tell you otherwise.
    I live in Michigan. We have lemon laws here. In fact, I am about to take my truck in for the same problem, the fourth time. I am contemplating asking for them to terminate my lease (I love the truck, hate the payment). Regardless, if you do not get the bike fixed, it cannot be called a lemon, from a legal standpoint anyway.

    For the OP, take the bike to a different BMW dealer. Dealers are like people; some are good, some are not so much. Tell them the situation, and have compression and lead down checks performed. Or even better, don't mention the oil, but play half stupid, and tell them you would like these tests performed, just for peace of mind. Then bring up the oil issue.
    02' K12LT ~ 83K '97 F650GS ~ 32K' 81 XS400 ~ 9K
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  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by der verge View Post
    I live in Michigan. We have lemon laws here. In fact, I am about to take my truck in for the same problem, the fourth time. I am contemplating asking for them to terminate my lease (I love the truck, hate the payment). Regardless, if you do not get the bike fixed, it cannot be called a lemon, from a legal standpoint anyway.

    For the OP, take the bike to a different BMW dealer. Dealers are like people; some are good, some are not so much. Tell them the situation, and have compression and lead down checks performed. Or even better, don't mention the oil, but play half stupid, and tell them you would like these tests performed, just for peace of mind. Then bring up the oil issue.
    I see where you're coming from on this but if I find a good dealer and explain the whole situation wouldn't they pay more attention to detail and document everything? Just my thoughts behind this. Are there any dealers in the midwest anyone recommends? Or are there any outstanding dealers anywhere I have some vacation time to burn up. I've heard decent things about Gateway BMW in St Louis from a lot of riders on ADVrider and various rally's I've been to.

  6. #21
    Registered User der verge's Avatar
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    If it is not far out of your way, Detroit BMW has an excellent mechanic. Don is top notch.
    02' K12LT ~ 83K '97 F650GS ~ 32K' 81 XS400 ~ 9K
    MOA #184190 Club #231 48035

  7. #22
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrylRi View Post
    How often do you top up your oil?

    I ask because some bikes don't like to be completely full. They will burn off some oil, perhaps down to the center of the site glass, and then stop. If your bike is one of these, and you top up every time you see the oil below the top line, you may just be burning that off.
    What he said, sometimes even a little below center. Mine is an 1100, and the higher I keep the oil, the faster it consumes it.
    2010 F800GS Full Ohlins package, '04 R1100S Replika
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  8. #23
    Douglas Williams
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrylRi View Post
    How often do you top up your oil?

    I ask because some bikes don't like to be completely full. They will burn off some oil, perhaps down to the center of the site glass, and then stop. If your bike is one of these, and you top up every time you see the oil below the top line, you may just be burning that off.
    He did say that he ran it until the light came on. That sounds lower than the minimum amount. Otherwise, I agree with your thought. That is how I regulate the oil level on my airheads albeit with a dip stick. No one has mentioned the type of oil used. Never having owned a new BMW, I may be off base but was the break-in done with petroleum base and if you switched to synthetic, when? If you're running synthetic, try switching to petroleum. Maybe.....
    Sent from a Galaxy, far, far away

  9. #24
    Debbie's Servant Lee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 83014 View Post
    was the break-in done with petroleum base and if you switched to synthetic, when? If you're running synthetic, try switching to petroleum. Maybe.....
    The OP states he has always used BMW dino oil.
    Lee 2011 K1300S
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  10. #25
    K75RT Keith
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    Not knowing your location, it is rather difficult to suggest an alternate dealer.

    Have you asked your current dealer to do compression and leak down tests?

  11. #26
    n00B
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    Quote Originally Posted by KKELLER149854 View Post
    Not knowing your location, it is rather difficult to suggest an alternate dealer.

    Have you asked your current dealer to do compression and leak down tests?
    I gave them the bike and asked them to do a compression and a leak down test. They did the compression test, it came back good. They didn't even bother with the leak down test. The left side showed 225LBS and the Right showed 215LBS according to them. I've bought a compression tester and I am about to double check the results. According to the research I have been able to find online

    Compression Test Pressure for my bike is as follows. Good = 10 bar or greater; Normal is 8.5 to 10.0 bar ; poor is 8.5 bar or lower.

  12. #27
    neanderssance man sedanman's Avatar
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    Oil can get into the combustion chamber by blowing past the rings OR by being sucked in on the intake stroke by way of faulty or MISSING valve stem seals. Valve stem seal problems won't show up on a compression test.
    Paul
    "Friends don't let friends ride junk!"
    2011 R1200RT

  13. #28
    Registered User der verge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sedanman View Post
    Oil can get into the combustion chamber by blowing past the rings OR by being sucked in on the intake stroke by way of faulty or MISSING valve stem seals. Valve stem seal problems won't show up on a compression test.
    Valve stem seals would have to me missing for this bike to use that much oil.

    Here is a different thought. You have always used BMW dino oil. Next oil change, try something different. I know it should not make any difference, but I have had engines in the past that burned more or leaked more of certain oils than others. It is worth a try.
    02' K12LT ~ 83K '97 F650GS ~ 32K' 81 XS400 ~ 9K
    MOA #184190 Club #231 48035

  14. #29
    neanderssance man sedanman's Avatar
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    It is possible that they ARE missing. I have taken apart car engines to replace head gaskets and found that the factory left one of them out. This happened on Jeep 3.7 and Dodge 4.7 engines. The machining was so good that they sometimes lasted 50,000 miles with a missing head gasket. A co-worker has a brand new Honda CR-V and it had an oil consumtion problem that turned out to be missing valve stem seals on one cylinder. BMW is not immune to human error in the manufacturing process. It's easy enough to check by pulling the valve covers. If it were mine I would bull the spark plugs out and take the valve covers off, then use a smoke machine to put smoke in the crankcase, if it leaks out the spark plug holes, rings, if it comes out of the valve seals then ther's the problem. I do realize however that not everyone has acces to a smoke machine ( every car dealer in the U.S. has one by now).
    Paul
    "Friends don't let friends ride junk!"
    2011 R1200RT

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