Burning Oil. Maybe? - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-28-2012, 04:17 AM Thread Starter
Ndr
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Burning Oil. Maybe?

So, I'm thinking my '89 is burning a bit of oil...

I recently changed the oi. Used the Rotella T 15w40 that I've seen recommended on here in quite a few places.

poured new oil directly into the filter to eliminate/reduce air bubbles in the system, but I didn't try doing the "burp" trick this time around (loosen the filter a bit with the engine running to let the last bit of air out) as when I did this last time, I obviously did something wrong and blew the gasket out of the oil filter.

Now... after riding around a bit, I noticed that the oil level in the sight glass had dropped about the thickness of 2 quarters from the top/max fill line. Assuming that this was just being pulled into a remaining air pocket in the filter, I topped the oil off and went for a ride. About 100 miles later, the oil leave had dropped back down approximately the same amount. I even rechecked the level after sitting several hours in case there was still oil dripping down from having been run.

Also, I never noticed the oil level dropping any prior do doing the last oil change.

I get no smoke from the exhaust, the bike starts up first try every time (if the choke is on of course) I get pretty decent power out of the bike. I'm getting a top speed of close to 100mph with an undersized tire.
I DO have some slight oil on the threads of the spark plugs, but the electrodes themselves are dry and look otherwise normal. I don't see any obvious oil leaks or seepage from anywhere. Nothing in the air filters to suggest over filling.

I currently have a piece of tape over half of the sight glass to mark the current oil level so I can watch to see if It falls more on the next ride I take so well see what happens there.

I suspect that I am just overreacting and the oil level will normalize shortly, but I wanted to get some opinions from those who know a bit more then myself.

......I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere then in any city on earth.

*2014 VN900 Custom (16,200 miles and counting)
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-28-2012, 08:09 AM
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Sounds normal to me. Most of us fill the crankcase past the full mark until there is about a half bubble showing ( a little less than 4 quarts ). If you changed to a different filter or lighter oil you might get different readings then before.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-28-2012, 09:08 AM
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I've noticed small variations in oil level. I was a little nervious and, like you, used masking tape by the "window" to mark the level. The indicated level will vary slightly depending on oil thickness (engine temp), drain time, and whether you park it on the side stand before putting it on the center stand for checking. Also, make sure you park on a level (concrete?) floor for consistent readings - at least park in the same spot.

I think your experience is normal, but it certainly doesn't hurt to keep an eye on it. If it is burning oil, you will see a downward trend in the level over time, but individual readings are not significant (unless you don't see any oil in there )

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-28-2012, 10:56 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Guys,

When I've been checking the oil, the bike has been consistently in the same location (give or take 5 feet) on the center stand, and I used the same oil last change, so I guess the difference here is really being that I used a different oil filter then the last time. I'll continue to monitor the oil level and see if there are any significant changes in how low it gets.

......I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere then in any city on earth.

*2014 VN900 Custom (16,200 miles and counting)
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2012, 10:25 PM
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You do know the recommended procedure for checking the oil level is to start the engine and let it run for 1-2 minutes, then shut it off and let it drain for 1-2 minutes. Then check the oil level.

Checking the oil with a cold engine that hasn`t been started for several hours will give you a low reading. (Don`t ask me how I know this.)

Checking the oil in the Kawi is not the same procedure as checking the oil in an automobile, which ideally is done cold, after the engine has been off for several hours.

Gordon

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Purchased May 16, 2008
Approx.19,300km (12,000 miles)

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 06-01-2012, 12:58 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OlHossCanada View Post
You do know the recommended procedure for checking the oil level is to start the engine and let it run for 1-2 minutes, then shut it off and let it drain for 1-2 minutes. Then check the oil level.

Checking the oil with a cold engine that hasn`t been started for several hours will give you a low reading. (Don`t ask me how I know this.)

Checking the oil in the Kawi is not the same procedure as checking the oil in an automobile, which ideally is done cold, after the engine has been off for several hours.
...See, you do learn something new every day. Thanks!

......I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere then in any city on earth.

*2014 VN900 Custom (16,200 miles and counting)
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