How to change oil and oil filter on a motorcycle

Do you need to change the oil?

There are a few ways to tell when the engine oil in your motorcycle needs replacing:

  1. Check the oil level using the dipstick or the oil level window (if your motorcycle has one). If the oil level is low, it may be time to add more oil or replace the oil altogether. (Make sure the motorcycle is held levelled or use the centre-stand)
  2. Look at the colour of the oil. If it is dark or cloudy, it may be contaminated and should be replaced.
  3. Listen for any strange noises coming from the engine while it is running. If you hear knocking or tapping noises, it may be a sign that the oil is not lubricating the engine properly and should be replaced. (there may be several other reasons for such noises which should be investigated if they continue after the oil has been changed)
  4. Check the manufacturer’s recommended service intervals for replacing the engine oil. If it has been a while since the last oil change, it may be time to replace the oil.

In general, it is a good idea to regularly check the engine oil on your motorcycle and replace it according to the manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure that the engine is properly lubricated and functioning properly.

How to change oil and filter

  1. Drain the old oil: First, warm up the engine by riding the motorcycle for a few minutes to loosen the oil. Then, place the motorcycle on its centre-stand or a lift, and locate the oil drain bolt underneath the engine. Use a wrench to loosen the bolt, and let the old oil drain into a pan.
  2. Replace the oil filter: Locate the oil filter, which is usually located near the oil drain bolt. Use a wrench to loosen the oil filter, and let any remaining oil drain out. Then, take a new oil filter and apply a thin layer of clean oil to the gasket. This will help create a seal and prevent leaks. Use the wrench to tighten the oil filter, but be careful not to over-tighten it.
  3. Add new oil: Once the old oil has drained and the oil filter has been replaced, you can add new oil. Refer to your owner’s manual for the correct type and amount of oil to use. You will also need a funnel to help pour the oil into the engine. Locate the oil fill cap, which is usually found on the side of the engine, and remove it. Slowly pour the new oil into the engine, being careful not to overfill it.
  4. Check the oil level: After adding the new oil, replace the oil fill cap and start the engine. Let it run for a few minutes, and then turn it off. Wait a few minutes for the oil to settle, and then check the oil level using the dipstick. The oil level should be between the minimum and maximum marks on the dipstick. If it’s low, add a little more oil. If it’s too high, you will need to remove some oil using a turkey baster or similar tool.
  5. Dispose of the old oil properly: Once you have changed the oil and oil filter, it’s important to dispose of the old oil properly. Most auto parts stores and service centres will accept used oil for recycling, so you can take it there for disposal. Do not pour it down a drain or throw it in the trash, as it can be harmful to the environment.

Remember to always refer to your owner’s manual for specific instructions on changing the oil and oil filter on your motorcycle. These steps may vary depending on the make and model of your motorcycle. It’s also a good idea to have a professional mechanic perform the oil change if you are unsure of how to do it yourself.

Conduct a short low speed test ride before embarking on a longer faster ride.


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