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Bmw 530xi

My brother informs me that when he was driving on the highway yesterday in his BMW 530xi he heard tap (tappet) noise. He put in a can of oil. Noise lowered. But 100 miles after the engine flashed signs that engine is shutting down. He pulled to side and the car computers shut down. There was some oil on the ground. But the engine oil level is not dangerously low. He does not think its transmission fluid but engine oil that has leaked. He was towed to a nearest hotel. He is waiting to take his car to the BMW garage this morning.

What do you all think is the issue? (By the way he had a recent oil change done).

It could be anything. If there was oil on the ground already when he pulled over that’s a bad sign.

Maybe they didn’t screw the drain plug into the oil pan all the way? If they left it out entirely your brother would’ve noticed when he added a can of oil, and he wouldn’t have made it 100 miles. It could be a blown gasket or seal of some sort. The engine got too hot it sounds like from a lack of lubrication. It’s not good.

Thanks for your response. Engine temperature stayed normal. No rise in that. Engine oil level guage also stayed normal. Tappet noise decreased after oil addition. But after 100 miles computer sent signals that malfunction, check oil, transmission levels and shutting down. Now car will not start due to computer shut down. Some oil on bottom. But when ignition is turned oil level is showing normal.

What do the engine oil and transmission fluid dipsticks indicate? Under these circumstances I wouldn’t rely only on a gauge.

Because he had a recent oil change it could be a loose drain plug that they forgot to tighten, or the filter gasket could be leaking.


Model year, mileage? Sounds like the results of a botched oil change…Was the car serviced at a “Quick Lube” place??

@AlanY, because the Bimmer has an electronic oil level monitoring system, it will not have a dip stick.