why are bmw oil changes so expensive

Why are BMW Oil Changes so Expensive? (Cost Explained!)

Why are BMW oil changes so expensive? This, I’m sure, is a question you are probably asking yourself if you own a BMW. We will be looking into the reasons why this is the case and establish ways, if any, of cutting this cost down.

Why are BMW Oil Changes so Expensive?

BMW oil changes are expensive because the special synthetic oil, oil filter as well as labour tend to be expensive. Only BMW approved dealerships and auto shops are allowed and using any other professionals could void your warranty.

The BMW is one of the most popular and attractive compact luxury offerings on the market. Every series and trim has its unique value and unique selling proposition but now and again, the vehicle does need oil changes. The question then after a service is, ‘Why are BMWs’ oil changes so expensive?’

How Much Are BMW Oil Changes?

BMW oil changes can vary depending on where you get the car serviced and what version of vehicle it is. At a BMW car dealership, the oil can run you up around $135 – $155.

Some dealerships run specials where they offer $85 for an oil and filter change. You could also try a local independent car shop. This might be a more convenient option especially if the shop specialises in BMWs. You would not want to run the risk of coming from the shop with more issues than were present before.

Experienced hands will calm the nerves. This option will cost you in the region of $150 – $180. Technically for the type of car it is, the BMW’s oil changes are not all that expensive. Brands falling in the same bracket like the Mercedes-Benz get their oil changes for $200 to $300.

The Audi ranges in the $140 – $150 so if we are taking expensive the BMW is not as out there for its car type. Alternatively, you can do the oil change on your own.

A DIY oil change is possible and can be a thing of pride for the BMW owner. The cost of buying the oil change toolkit, oil filter, high- performance synthetic oil and drain plug is about $90. This one-time purchase will redeem its value in use.

Reasons Why BMW Oil Changes Are Expensive

The costs that go into any service tend to boil down to the finer points that go into delivering the service. In the case of a BMW oil change, we are talking about labour and high-performance synthetic oil.

Cost of Oil

BMW recommends a specific type of synthetic oil for its engines. This oil ensures that the vehicles run as efficiently as possible. Unfortunately, they are not cheap. This is one of the big costs for a BMW oil change.

Oil Filter

Just as with the oil, BMW also has recommended filters that they want used on their vehicles. Like the oil, these filters are also more expensive than most that are found on the market.


BMW only recommends personnel that have been specially trained and attached to the recommended dealerships and auto shops. If your BMW is still under warranty, you risk it getting voided if you use any other technician not recommended by BMW.

On the other hand, if you are off warranty, you can use any auto shop or dealer of your choice but preferably someone with experience working with BMWs.

Which Oils Can You Use in a BMW?

BMW takes its oil seriously and has various options to choose from. You have the Genuine Synthetic 5W30 Motor Oil which is approved for most of BMW’s series models.

It offers the best protection from rust and corrosion and improves the car’s fuel economy. The downside though is it is not cheap. You also have other high-performance synthetic oils from bigger familiar brands that go well for different versions of BMWs.

Castrol has EDGE 5W-30 Advanced which is great for diesel engines and offers good wear protection. Mobil 1 120760 Synthetic Motor Oil is also really good with high-performance engines and eliminates cold starts.

The runt of the pack has to be the more affordable but less approved Valvoline Advanced Full Synthetic. This works well for your older model BMWs with very high mileages but for shorter intervals of about 3000 miles. It is great as a sort of engine detox for your high mileage bimmer.

The choice of oil comes down to what is best for your particular vehicle and what you can afford. The owner’s manual comes with recommendations of which oils would be best for which version vehicle.

Oil Change Intervals

The vehicle is a high performance and luxury line and to get the best value out of it you need to give the car regular service. The manufacturer advises an oil change for the cars to be done every 7000 to 12000 miles.

That comes to about a regularity of one oil change a year. This is not too much of a drain on the wallet, as BMWs are known for their durability and reliability. In the long run, the cost will pay back in fewer car issues and better longevity.

Final Thoughts on BMW Oil Changes

BMW oil changes are not that expensive for the class of vehicle it is. The cost does vary with the location you are in, where you get your service from (authorised dealer / independent service shop), model, engine size and year of manufacture of your car.

Averaging at about $160, there is the option of doing the oil change yourself. Even so, I recommend taking the car into a BMW dealership and having it serviced there. It gives you time to check out the showroom and guarantees your car will get the best service.

Also, you might get extra services too. And since the type of oil used is very important to performance you would be getting the appropriate treatment for your specific vehicle.




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