2000 323 Oil Light

My daughter bought the referenced car, and all is pretty good, except that the Oil Light comes on yellow about 30 seconds after the car has been started, and remains on for about 30 seconds then goes out. The Oil Light is
Yellow in this sequence, and is Red when the key is turned ON, but the car is not started.
The dip stick is a bit of a bitch to read -- it is the same color as the oil. The car was serviced at the dealership by the previous owner, so I doubt the level is low. The car reports 13,700 miles to service, so it has been serviced recently.
What's up with my yellow Oil Light? My instinct is that it is reporting low level, or low pressure, but I don't think the oil is low, and low pressure is never a good thing.
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The light is for the oil level. While sensors can go bad, I have never heard of that on the newer models. Why not add 1/2 quart/liter and see what happens? I bet the light goes out. Worst case, you are 1/2 quart/liter overfull which won't bother a thing.
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wrote:

That's what I was thinking, I added a quart -- no help. I guess I need an oil level sensor. Do you know where that part lives? I gotta get a Bentley manual for this car, but until that happens, I hafta ask stupid questions.
If all it is is a sensor for low level, then I can pretty much ignore the light as long as it is only yellow. I know the level is good now, and in a week, I'll change the oil anyway and be sure to put in 7 quarts, or whatever the spec is. I need to visit my dealership for the parts for the headliner/moonroof, I can get the level sensor on the same trip.
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I tried to email you a picture, but your address doesn't work. The sensor looks like it lives at the bottom, front of the deepest part of the oilpan.
Bob
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wrote:

Sorry, that's at attempt to avoid bogus email.
Try crwlrjeff at yahoo dot com

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Email sent.
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Jeff Strickland wrote:

It lives in the bottom of the oil sump, accessible from under the car if you remove the aluminum reinforcing plate that holds things together. I'd suggest that you consider professional help for this job. It is best done on a lift, and requires tools such as a torque wrench, and an

Are you CERTAIN the oil level is good? Is this certainty based on a reading using the dipstick? If not - you're simply risking blowing up the engine. RED is BAD BAD BAD. By the time the light turns red damage has already been done to the engine. Unless I was absolutely certain that the oil level is correct - I would suggest taking it to the dealer to have this sorted out.
But - that's just me..
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My 330ci did the same. It was a faulty oil level sensor and is known to fail on E46s.
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When the oil is low, the light will come on as you switch the engine off, as it gets lower it will come on as you are driving.
The best way to read the dipstick is to wipe it first, then dip it back in.
These engines can use a litre of oil per 1000 miles, which, BMW say, is normal.
With that in mind, your oil light could come on a little over 2000 miles after the service.

though, if it is changed, the dealer will probably charge you to fill the engine with new oil, 6 litres of LL01 is quite a (BMW) price. I would check the level regularly and wait till the next service.
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I think I'll get a new sensor and change the oil at home.

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Pashlipops wrote:

My 323i does the same thing. The oil level is fine. I'm just ignoring it for now.
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Yes, red is bad.
I have no repeat indications after that which I described -- after 30 seconds or so, the yellow light comes on for 30 seconds or so.
I am pretty sure the level is good, perhaps on the high side now, and that the indicator is a malfunction.

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