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      05-26-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
Cheeze1
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Exclamation Brand new engine - OCC and magnetic drain plug, surprising results?

Figured I'd share this with the forum and see if this is expected or out of the ordinary. I bought the car brand new in January and followed the BMW break-in procedure precisely. Did the first service at 1,200 miles and at that time I installed both the BMS Oil Catch Can as well as a Dimple magnetic oil drain plug. Today I did the 5,000 mile change and here is what I found related to those two items. I've used only the correct BMW oil and Top-Teir fuel (usually Exxon).

Oil catch can had a ton of crap in it. It smelled very heavily of fuel. The color of the liquid was a maroon/brown, much lighter than the oil that drained from the engine. Here is what it looked like when first taken off:





With all the liquid dumped out, there was still an incredible amount of sludge. This is after only ~4k miles on a brand new engine!





After drying out a short bit:







When I first looked at the magnetic drain plug I couldn't tell that there was anything on there. Then I wiped it onto a paper towel and an absurd amount of ultra-fine metal, almost a paste, came off. I could practically write with it, it was very much like a metallic sharpie pen.

In these pictures, the brown oil in the middle is some of the oil that drained from the engine. The black outline is what I 'drew' with the stuff stuck to the magnetic drain plug. A fair amount more came off on other paper towels. Definitely a considerable amount of metallic particles.





Zoom in of the same picture. The phone camera didn't do a great job of capturing the speckles of metallic reflection but they were definitely there. Like I said it was almost like the ink that comes out of a metallic sharpie, but more like a paste. You can see some in the normal brown oil too (probably rubbed off from the drain plug when I set it down initially).






So, is it normal to have that much crap on these items, particularly the OCC? I'm really glad I did both of them (at this forum's recommendation, thanks guys) when the car was new. Now it's easy to understand why the valves get so gunked up, but is this a 'normal' amount of stuff to be getting in the OCC on a brand new engine?



Lastly, random pic on the way home after the oil change and a wash, in her natural habitat sucking down fuel...


Last edited by Cheeze1; 05-26-2014 at 08:29 PM.
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      05-26-2014, 08:41 PM   #2
Adam135
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That looks nothing like my OCC. Seems like something isnt right...
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      05-26-2014, 08:49 PM   #3
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With OCC, it seems like oxidization probably from water vapour. What does the inside top of the oil filler cap look like? There was another N55 that posted a few weeks ago and it was similar colour to your's. My N54 OCC deposits are dark, same as from the sump.

Drain plug deposit looks about right.
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      05-26-2014, 08:49 PM   #4
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The metal shavings are completely normal, and why those of us who have been around long enough follow 1200 mile break in service and Mike Millers old school maintenance plan.

Fuel oil is more concerning...
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      05-26-2014, 09:31 PM   #5
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Nothing odd about those metal particulate pieces working their way into the filter and drain plug on a brand new motor. Tolerances are being honed, various gaskets, valves, retainers, etc are seating. It's just breaking in.

The strong smell of fuel in your oil is another story.
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      05-26-2014, 10:21 PM   #6
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Normal. The catch can will usually catch more fuel vapor then oil, moreso if you use any kind of ethanol based fuel, or make short trips - remember, it's just condensing the stuff inside the bottom end of the motor as it passes through - and more often then not that includes a ton of fuel vapor instead of oil on a newer engine without perfect ring seal
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      05-27-2014, 09:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheeze1 View Post
Now it's easy to understand why the valves get so gunked up,
It is? Could you elaborate on this?
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      05-27-2014, 09:20 AM   #8
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Thanks for all the feedback, no general consensus yet though (on the OCC). Ian - I'll try to get a pic of the filler cap sometime soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by edisapimp View Post
It is? Could you elaborate on this?
Without the catch can all the junk inside the canister could have made it into the intake system.
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      05-27-2014, 11:37 AM   #9
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I wouldn't worry about it. Since the initial break-in is completed, I would gather my results over the next oil change interval. The break in process can have some off OCC blow by due to the seating of the rings and valve seats and etc. It is pretty rare that someone installs an OCC at 1200 miles so im sure these results are just never seen.
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      05-31-2014, 02:47 AM   #10
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If you are still worried about it, after your next oil change send an oil sample to Blackstone Laboratories.
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