OIL Life

Roy Kjendal

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#1
Wondering if anyone is pushing the 6K mile spec on their K1600GTL, etc. 6K seems a bit short and the oil is pretty expensive? Also wondering if anyone is using an oil testing lab to see how their oil is doing?

Thanks
 

Garry in AZ

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#2
Roy, I have no K1600GTL experience, but I can tell you this... I use Mobil 1 full synthetic oil (specifically "V-Twin" 20W-50) in all my street bikes. With my 2005 ST1300 I have done several 10,000+ mile rides without changing the oil, including last years IBR. When I got home, I sent my oil to Blackstone Labs for analysis. The report came back favorable, and showed the oil still had 23% of life left. Viscosity was still good, and very little insolubles in the oil. I always change filters with the oil, and I typically change between 5000 and 6000 miles, but I do not worry about it if I extend that distance occasionally.
That said, in terms of general maintenance, oil and filters are cheap insurance and I would suggest you follow the manufacturers service intervals.

Garry
 

Roy Kjendal

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#3
I used to have a Wing felt very good about doing 10-12K between oil/filter changes as long as it was synthetic. The BMW specs seem to pretty tight and the oil they spec is 'special' and expensive (synthetic, of course). I can get it from Castrol for $40/6 quart...twice that from BMW fro the same spec (I believe it's a racing spec). Anyhow, I don't want to screw with the warranty but am interested in what other K bike owners are doing.... Thanks for your inputs Gary.
 
#4
Not BMW specific ...

I have an '05 FJR with 115000 miles on it. Yamaha service interval for oil is 4000 miles. I use Shell Rotella T 15W40 Heavy Duty Diesel Oil

After the 48/10 I submitted a sample to Blackstone Labs for a report. The oil had covered 8500 miles. Blackstone reported it to be still within spec and suggested a 10000 mile service interval.

I'll probably stay lower than that, but I quit fretting about the oil and will now just change it any time it's convenient, under 10k.
 

Patrick Ford

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#5
I use Rotella T-6 5-40 full syn diesel oil in my GL and FJR. I haven't done a oil analysis but the FJR does not use any oil. The GL 1800 always used a bit of Mobil 1 10-40 but by changing to the Rotella it reduced oil consumption to almost nothing. I've never heard of another GL that used oil but mine has for the last 123K?? Runs well and isn't that big a deal to carry a bit of oil. If I run it really hard it uses a bit more. About 6 oz after Team Lyle Alamo. I have gone 11,000 between oil and filter changes with the GL, IBR 15 and 13.
 
#6
If I remember correctly the K1600GTL has an odd oil change configuration. A drain plug inside the first drain pan? that would encourage me to change it less often. However I do every 5k on my Harley and every 6k on my BMW for no other reason then I'm following the recommended intervals. Cheap insurance and hope not to buy another bike until I retire, 14 years 7 months or so. I wouldn't hesitate to ride the IBR or trip for 10-12k miles without changing it but when im home I follow the recommendation.
 

Martin Little

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#7
Roy
I’ve generally changed oil & filter religiously on my K1600GT Sport at the 10,000km/6k Miles mark, with the odd exception when I’ve stretched it to 7k.
It’s just had its 90,000km major service including valve clearances etc & passed with flying colours.
 

kwthom

Rider
Premier Member
IBA Member
#8
Three year old post, but still a valid question...

Also wondering if anyone is using an oil testing lab to see how their oil is doing?
Again, no specific BMW experience, but on the topic of oil testing, there will be some that will claim Blackstone's testing could be a little inconclusive or even sketchy (feel free to search for that...).

Before I tested, I had no idea what was going on. Like @Steve Bracken posted above, the oil in my 'Wing still had adequate service life remaining after three weeks and 9000 miles after also doing a 48/10. I had also baselined the bike before I did that ride, so I have a before and after...and things were fine.

Recommend to anyone - if you're really curious, spend ~$100 for three oil intervals and get educated on how the oil is performing.
 

cacomly

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#9
Three year old post, but still a valid question...



Again, no specific BMW experience, but on the topic of oil testing, there will be some that will claim Blackstone's testing could be a little inconclusive or even sketchy (feel free to search for that...).

Before I tested, I had no idea what was going on. Like @Steve Bracken posted above, the oil in my 'Wing still had adequate service life remaining after three weeks and 9000 miles after also doing a 48/10. I had also baselined the bike before I did that ride, so I have a before and after...and things were fine.

Recommend to anyone - if you're really curious, spend ~$100 for three oil intervals and get educated on how the oil is performing.
I second this, if you want to know how your oil is performing OR if your engine is wearing do the oil samples.

I was doing oil samples at each oil change on my Sportster once I got past 100,000 miles because there were not many that had reached that mark. I did them up to the point that I killed the engine just before the 2017 IBR. My focus was on metal in the oil, however they were reporting on the oil life as well, and I believe there was a second test for a few $$$ more that would give specific info on oil life.
 

Roy Kjendal

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#11
During the last IBR (2019) I did not change my oil. I found that after 'leg 2' I was down about 1/2 quart wich I topped off. This was at about 8k miles. I had previously pushed beyong that with no oil loss so I can explain the low oil level. When I got home after about 13k miles total it was down a full quart. I'm anxiously watching it now and hoping it was just the very extended mileage that cause the oil usage....
 

cacomly

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#12
During the last IBR (2019) I did not change my oil. I found that after 'leg 2' I was down about 1/2 quart wich I topped off. This was at about 8k miles. I had previously pushed beyong that with no oil loss so I can explain the low oil level. When I got home after about 13k miles total it was down a full quart. I'm anxiously watching it now and hoping it was just the very extended mileage that cause the oil usage....
Could be the extended mileage AND long periods of time at highway speeds/higher RPM