Originally Posted by Musikmann
My 2001 E320 FSS system told me that I needed to add some engine oil today, and in fact it said I needed 2 quarts.
1) Is this normally when we are alerted to this? I assume that I was not dangerously low until I got to this point, but HELL, I only had 1 extra quart in the trunk, and was NOT in the best place to locate another qt. of Mobil 1 0W40!
2) After I added the oil (I found a place to buy another qt), my next scheduled "B" service has gone from "in 2900 miles" to "in 4900 miles".
Are these systems a bit dense, or what? I realize that my oil is now cleaner due to the addition of the 2 quarts, but I thought our FSS were monitoring more driving parameters than just the cleanliness of our oil.
Thanks in advance for your feedback,
Hey, MM, Happy new year!
Umm, yeah, that's pretty much when you get the alert. I got it once (right after I got the car) and it freaked me out, so now I check it at least every other gas stop (way too often, I know, but "once bitten twice shy"). I can't remember where it is in the myriad steering wheel menus, but so long as I'm on level ground, I parse through to the one to check oil level. Key has to be on, engine off, and it will tell you if need a quart (I think it's only four possibilities, overfilled, normal/ok, 1 qt down, 2 qts down). But the main alert screen doesn't come on unless you're down at the two range or beyond. That's a little scary to me (even though it's the equivalent of one quart on most cars...) which is why I've gotten in the habit of checking it regularly. If you zero your tripmeter at fuel stops, that's a great time to do it, right when you're getting ready to go. If pressed I guess their default view is that "true driving enthusiasts" will check it regularly anyway, so they'll only bark at you about it when it becomes critical. (I'd hope there's also some real cushion in it at that point; how many of us know someone who ignored an OIL idiot light -- thinking they'd get it when convenient -- and then complained that their engine seized up three weeks later?)
Re: the FSS, it's apparently pretty sophisticated. Cleanliness, viscosity, oil level, driving conditions, habits, temperature, etc. all contribute to the flexibility of the interval. Personally I tend to stick pretty close to the FSS recommendation and in your case I'd probably be more inclined to be closer to where you were before than after the addition, but I'd never challenge anyone who decided to follow it.
Anyway, that's my .02 worth.
Take care and enjoy the ride,