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Old 12-20-2009, 11:10 AM   #1
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Default Would it be bad to let your bike sit w/o oil in it over the winter?

So here's my situation.... I need an oil change, but won't be riding until spring. Can I drain the oil out of the bike and let the bike sit w/o it over the winter so the dirty oil isn't just resting in their and then put fresh new oil in it in the spring? Or would that be bad for the bike?
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Old 12-20-2009, 11:54 AM   #2
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I would not. Moisture is bad for bikes, especially on hte insides. Any where there is not fluid, moisture can accumulate. I would keep oil in it as well as a full tank of gas any time it's sitting for an extended period of time. Change your oil before you're ready to ride, but not before then.
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:01 PM   #3
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I would not. Moisture is bad for bikes, especially on hte insides. Any where there is not fluid, moisture can accumulate. I would keep oil in it as well as a full tank of gas any time it's sitting for an extended period of time. Change your oil before you're ready to ride, but not before then.
I agree, leave the oil in. It will help controll rust over the winter and keep things lubricated. Also, could be extremely bad if you forgot about the oil you drained, when you decided to go riding in the spring.
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:21 PM   #4
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So you guys would recommend leaving the dirty oil that's in there now in the bike over winter and changing it come spring? I heard the particles in the oil were bad for the bike if it's being stored?
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:46 PM   #5
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Go ahead and change the oil now, then there won't be any worry.
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:51 PM   #6
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I know several people that simply change the oil with some cheap automotive oil (any brand/SM or not) just to store it for Winter.
Then, in the Spring, start it to warm the oil and drain.
Then they fill it with the synthetic oil of choice for the riding season.

Eric
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Old 12-20-2009, 12:56 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by adam15229 View Post
So you guys would recommend leaving the dirty oil that's in there now in the bike over winter and changing it come spring? I heard the particles in the oil were bad for the bike if it's being stored?
There shouldn't be any particles in the oil. Particles will be in the oil filter. So, letting it sit in storage this winter is not a problem. Change it now or in the spring really don't make any difference. Just make sure you change it before you ride in the spring.
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Old 12-20-2009, 03:18 PM   #8
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I've always been told to change it before you store it in case any gas gets into the oil which will be bad if it's sitting for several months (can eat away at metal, etc.)

I changed mine less than 100 miles before putting it away so I didn't feel like changing it again
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Old 12-20-2009, 03:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by justin68106 View Post
I've always been told to change it before you store it in case any gas gets into the oil which will be bad if it's sitting for several months (can eat away at metal, etc.)

I changed mine less than 100 miles before putting it away so I didn't feel like changing it again
What's the difference between old oil with gas mixed in and new oil with gas mixed in? In either case, there's gas in the oil...
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Old 12-20-2009, 07:07 PM   #10
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+1 on the full tank of gas and might I add half a can of seafoam or any fuel stabilizer... Old gasoline can be very bad for your engine...
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Old 12-20-2009, 10:40 PM   #11
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I agree with all of the previous posters. Either change it now or leave the old in but do not empty it and leave it for the Winter. Personally, I would get your engine hot, drain and change the oil now, then ride it up to the closest gas station, fill the tank, add some Sea Foam and park it for the season. Then when you are ready to ride in the Spring, you have fresh oil and the Sea Foam will clean your fuel system of any gelled gas. Staybill is great and stabilizes fuel, but it doesn't clean like Sea Foam. The Sea Foam is the best of both worlds.
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Old 12-20-2009, 11:35 PM   #12
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hmm all are correct but the sea foam first then fill up gas drive or idle for about 20 min.
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Old 12-20-2009, 11:52 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by primalmu View Post
What's the difference between old oil with gas mixed in and new oil with gas mixed in? In either case, there's gas in the oil...
I don't think there's much since the oil has hardly been in there (I think it's got maybe 50 miles of use really) plus I'm kinda lazy and it's **** cold out now... Had I not needed an oil change 50 miles before we got over a foot of snow dropped on us (while it was in the 50s two weeks before) I wouldn't have rode on it with the new oil.
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Old 12-21-2009, 12:40 AM   #14
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some people recommend change the oil before you start it, and again in the spring. not big on making sense.
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Old 12-21-2009, 06:39 PM   #15
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Yeah, I wouldn't let it sit dry. The only time a bike should be dry is maybe when it is new from the factory. I may be in the minority here, or maybe I just don't "get" it, but I don't see the point in changing the oil after winter storage and especially not before. Why put fresh, clean oil in a bike only to swap it in a few months with zero miles on it??. I could better understand swapping the dirty oil out after a few months of winter storage, but really only if its near the 3k mile mark (or whatever the rider chooses as their oil change interval) and its close to time to change it anyway. I personally only change my oil when it hits the 3k mile mark. I do, however, ride my bike at least once every two weeks during the winter, so I'm sure my bike gets enough use to avoid whatever issues I would encounter if I didn't ride it through the winter, thus, why I don't worry about this whole oil issue to begin with.
Sooo, what happens if you store your bike for 4 months and don't change your oil before you ride it? Honest question, not trying to be a jerk...
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Old 12-21-2009, 06:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirgilbert357 View Post
Yeah, I wouldn't let it sit dry. The only time a bike should be dry is maybe when it is new from the factory. I may be in the minority here, or maybe I just don't "get" it, but I don't see the point in changing the oil after winter storage and especially not before. Why put fresh, clean oil in a bike only to swap it in a few months with zero miles on it??. I could better understand swapping the dirty oil out after a few months of winter storage, but really only if its near the 3k mile mark (or whatever the rider chooses as their oil change interval) and its close to time to change it anyway. I personally only change my oil when it hits the 3k mile mark. I do, however, ride my bike at least once every two weeks during the winter, so I'm sure my bike gets enough use to avoid whatever issues I would encounter if I didn't ride it through the winter, thus, why I don't worry about this whole oil issue to begin with.
Sooo, what happens if you store your bike for 4 months and don't change your oil before you ride it? Honest question, not trying to be a jerk...
I really have no idea if this works this way, but the logic behind it(not mine), is that oil sitting will cling to ****.

But I think its complete BULL****, because my GS550 was fine sitting with dirty oil for 17 years before I changed it.
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Old 12-21-2009, 10:30 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirgilbert357 View Post
Yeah, I wouldn't let it sit dry. The only time a bike should be dry is maybe when it is new from the factory. I may be in the minority here, or maybe I just don't "get" it, but I don't see the point in changing the oil after winter storage and especially not before. Why put fresh, clean oil in a bike only to swap it in a few months with zero miles on it??. I could better understand swapping the dirty oil out after a few months of winter storage, but really only if its near the 3k mile mark (or whatever the rider chooses as their oil change interval) and its close to time to change it anyway. I personally only change my oil when it hits the 3k mile mark. I do, however, ride my bike at least once every two weeks during the winter, so I'm sure my bike gets enough use to avoid whatever issues I would encounter if I didn't ride it through the winter, thus, why I don't worry about this whole oil issue to begin with.
Sooo, what happens if you store your bike for 4 months and don't change your oil before you ride it? Honest question, not trying to be a jerk...

Oil can break down after a few months of sitting in the bike, doesn't matter if it is being run through the motor or not, thats why you should change it after the winter, changing it before the winter avoids leaving contaminants in the engine that can be flushed out with the old oil. Not trying to be rude but I don't see what the big deal is about 2 oil changes, if anyone doesn't want to do it then don't but its one of those things that will help keep your bike in good working order and should be done.
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Old 12-22-2009, 05:45 PM   #18
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Dude, It's oil. Go buy some cheap car oil,drain it, leave the filter in it, run it around a bit before you put it away and change it in the spring. Plus what Rex said.

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Old 12-23-2009, 08:04 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 67fire View Post
I know several people that simply change the oil with some cheap automotive oil (any brand/SM or not) just to store it for Winter.
Then, in the Spring, start it to warm the oil and drain.
Then they fill it with the synthetic oil of choice for the riding season.

Eric
Did you tell them how much of a waste that is? Oil will not go bad just sitting in an engine, especially for that short a period. It's a foolish waste of money.

The best thing to do whether you change oil or not is to make the last ride before parking it a long ride to evaporate any moisture out of the oil.

Personally I would change the oil, then go for one final prolonged ride to make sure the engine and exhaust system are fully hot. No moisture. Fill the gas tank up full, maybe put in some StaBil fuel stablizer, then park it. No way would I go start it for any limited time during the winter, only if it is possible to actually ride it long enough to get the engine and exhaust hot. Before starting after long layups drain the carburetors using the screws on the bottom of the float bowls I'd also consider blocking the intake inlets and the exhaust outlets. That would serve two purposes, keep moisture out as well as mice. It's amazing the nest a mouse can build in an air cleaner box - using the air cleaner too - and they can even get in mufflers to build there too.
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Old 12-23-2009, 08:17 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by markk53 View Post
Did you tell them how much of a waste that is? Oil will not go bad just sitting in an engine, especially for that short a period. It's a foolish waste of money.

The best thing to do whether you change oil or not is to make the last ride before parking it a long ride to evaporate any moisture out of the oil.

Personally I would change the oil, then go for one final prolonged ride to make sure the engine and exhaust system are fully hot. No moisture. Fill the gas tank up full, maybe put in some StaBil fuel stablizer, then park it. No way would I go start it for any limited time during the winter, only if it is possible to actually ride it long enough to get the engine and exhaust hot. Before starting after long layups drain the carburetors using the screws on the bottom of the float bowls I'd also consider blocking the intake inlets and the exhaust outlets. That would serve two purposes, keep moisture out as well as mice. It's amazing the nest a mouse can build in an air cleaner box - using the air cleaner too - and they can even get in mufflers to build there too.
So after a winter of oil sitting you wouldn't change it? You would go against any manufacturer's recommendation? How does that make since, even if not changing it before you put it away(which you should) you would just let 3-6 month old oil go through your bike? Not good advice, and if anyone takes it, we will start seeing threads next spring of bikes not running great, bad shifts, etc. And maybe on some fuel stabilizer? Fuel will gel over the winter, clog fuel lines, filters, etc. Yes this will happen after a few months.
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Old 12-23-2009, 08:26 AM   #21
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Oil can break down after a few months of sitting in the bike, doesn't matter if it is being run through the motor or not, thats why you should change it after the winter, changing it before the winter avoids leaving contaminants in the engine that can be flushed out with the old oil. Not trying to be rude but I don't see what the big deal is about 2 oil changes, if anyone doesn't want to do it then don't but its one of those things that will help keep your bike in good working order and should be done.
So how long has that stuff you put in your bike sat in the container on a shelf? I will tell you very few dealers, if any in the current market, change oil out on a new bike that's possibly sat in a crate for as long as a year. They up the oil if needed and send the bike out. If what you are saying was true, manufacturers would recommend the oil be drained and changed - they do not - because they'd be on the hook for warranty claims.

Fresh oil doesn't break down significantly sitting still in a bike. If you expect me to buy that you'd better have some real information, not some word from someone who knows someone. Where's the charting that shows oil breakdown while not in use? Oil breakdown is related to heat and use. The information I found has a technical shelf life for oil at about 5 years, with the problem being some separation of the blend. The stated concern was more about old oil not meeting current standards. Nothing was stated about parking a vehicle for any length of time. My simple assumption would be that the fresh oil might rinse off any materials, but breakdown would be infantesimal over even a year since there is no heat or use applied to it, that it's a waste to put oil in, not use it, then drain it out and toss it.

I'd be more concerned about condensation that can occur when the engine temps vary in an unheated garage. Thus a good reason to plug exhaust and intake openings to try to eliminate it a bit.
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Old 12-23-2009, 10:03 AM   #22
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Oil can break down after a few months of sitting in the bike, doesn't matter if it is being run through the motor or not, thats why you should change it after the winter, changing it before the winter avoids leaving contaminants in the engine that can be flushed out with the old oil. Not trying to be rude but I don't see what the big deal is about 2 oil changes, if anyone doesn't want to do it then don't but its one of those things that will help keep your bike in good working order and should be done.
I didn't take your response as rude...I was asking for a little explanation, and I appreciate the response. Oil changes aren't cheap though and people try to save money any way they can these days, lol. Anyway, what you said about flushing the contaminants makes sense. I would figure that synthetic oil would break down at a much slower rate than dino. So for those who don't ride that much, what would you say the interval should be time-wise for synthetic over dino? I've heard 3 months or 3k for dino of course, but what about synthetic? (I ask because I just change my synthetic every 3k religiously, regardless of time that has passed). And if your oil is mostly clean (say, less than 500 miles), why not just change it in the spring? Even though the oil breaks down, if you just drop the old oil out before riding the bike and put fresh stuff in there, it shouldn't hurt anything because it isn't that dirty. Like I said, I ride through the winter so this process doesn't apply to me, but its good to know. I'm a "details" guy...
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Old 12-23-2009, 01:42 PM   #23
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So how long has that stuff you put in your bike sat in the container on a shelf? I will tell you very few dealers, if any in the current market, change oil out on a new bike that's possibly sat in a crate for as long as a year. They up the oil if needed and send the bike out. If what you are saying was true, manufacturers would recommend the oil be drained and changed - they do not - because they'd be on the hook for warranty claims.

Fresh oil doesn't break down significantly sitting still in a bike. If you expect me to buy that you'd better have some real information, not some word from someone who knows someone. Where's the charting that shows oil breakdown while not in use? Oil breakdown is related to heat and use. The information I found has a technical shelf life for oil at about 5 years, with the problem being some separation of the blend. The stated concern was more about old oil not meeting current standards. Nothing was stated about parking a vehicle for any length of time. My simple assumption would be that the fresh oil might rinse off any materials, but breakdown would be infantesimal over even a year since there is no heat or use applied to it, that it's a waste to put oil in, not use it, then drain it out and toss it.

I'd be more concerned about condensation that can occur when the engine temps vary in an unheated garage. Thus a good reason to plug exhaust and intake openings to try to eliminate it a bit.
This is very interesting info...hmmm.
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Old 12-23-2009, 01:48 PM   #24
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So how long has that stuff you put in your bike sat in the container on a shelf? I will tell you very few dealers, if any in the current market, change oil out on a new bike that's possibly sat in a crate for as long as a year. They up the oil if needed and send the bike out. If what you are saying was true, manufacturers would recommend the oil be drained and changed - they do not - because they'd be on the hook for warranty claims.

Fresh oil doesn't break down significantly sitting still in a bike. If you expect me to buy that you'd better have some real information, not some word from someone who knows someone. Where's the charting that shows oil breakdown while not in use? Oil breakdown is related to heat and use. The information I found has a technical shelf life for oil at about 5 years, with the problem being some separation of the blend. The stated concern was more about old oil not meeting current standards. Nothing was stated about parking a vehicle for any length of time. My simple assumption would be that the fresh oil might rinse off any materials, but breakdown would be infantesimal over even a year since there is no heat or use applied to it, that it's a waste to put oil in, not use it, then drain it out and toss it.

I'd be more concerned about condensation that can occur when the engine temps vary in an unheated garage. Thus a good reason to plug exhaust and intake openings to try to eliminate it a bit.

Oil in a sealed, clean container is not exposed to oxygen, moisture, dirt, dust or any other contaminants that are in the engine. I'll post up a better and more detailed explanation later when I get off work

Oil in a bike that sat in a crate was unused seeing as the bike is brand new! No contaminants in the engine as it hasn't been run. NO need to change it.

And I was referring to manufacturers recommendation of draining the oil after 3 months, 6 months, or in some cases a year.
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Old 12-23-2009, 01:49 PM   #25
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I didn't take your response as rude...I was asking for a little explanation, and I appreciate the response. Oil changes aren't cheap though and people try to save money any way they can these days, lol. Anyway, what you said about flushing the contaminants makes sense. I would figure that synthetic oil would break down at a much slower rate than dino. So for those who don't ride that much, what would you say the interval should be time-wise for synthetic over dino? I've heard 3 months or 3k for dino of course, but what about synthetic? (I ask because I just change my synthetic every 3k religiously, regardless of time that has passed). And if your oil is mostly clean (say, less than 500 miles), why not just change it in the spring? Even though the oil breaks down, if you just drop the old oil out before riding the bike and put fresh stuff in there, it shouldn't hurt anything because it isn't that dirty. Like I said, I ride through the winter so this process doesn't apply to me, but its good to know. I'm a "details" guy...
With a synthetic oil like Amsoil you can run the oil for double the recommended drain interval or 1 year
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Old 12-23-2009, 04:02 PM   #26
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If my bike had old oil this time of the year I would change it but I would also ride once a week, I rode today 20 miles if there is snow or ice I start and move around in the garage .
Just my 2cents
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Old 12-23-2009, 06:03 PM   #27
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So after a winter of oil sitting you wouldn't change it? You would go against any manufacturer's recommendation? How does that make since, even if not changing it before you put it away(which you should) you would just let 3-6 month old oil go through your bike? Not good advice, and if anyone takes it, we will start seeing threads next spring of bikes not running great, bad shifts, etc. And maybe on some fuel stabilizer? Fuel will gel over the winter, clog fuel lines, filters, etc. Yes this will happen after a few months.
In my 40 years of motorcycling I've NEVER seen gasoline gell over an Ohio winter! I would certainly run on oil in March that I changed just before parking my bike in November (although usually I get out about every few months at worst). In addition, I don't use fuel stabilizer, filling the tank full before parking the bike. A full tank has less surface area per volume of fule for the breakdown and evaporation of aeromatic fuel additives. Not so true with a partial tank. This seems to have worked for over 43,000 miles and about 12 years with my dual sport along with numerous motorcycles in the dealership that sat over the winter.

Having done my own maintenance and much of my own mechanical work over those 40 years, plus 22 years in and around a dealership doing sales and set up work I've never seen any manufacturer's recommendation to simply change oil that has been in an engine unused. In fact the set up manuals do NOT say to drain oil and put in new oil, they say to check the level and add if needed. Add this to the fact, as I witnessed on a tour of the Marysville Honda plant, that the manufacturers start up and run the bikes through a test run on rollers after a bit of a warm up, but not a really thorough heating, then break them back down a bit and put them in a crate in which the bike may sit for 6-12 months from manufacture to sale... Heck yes I'll run that fall oil change oil in the spring.

One more thing, I called and spoke with a mechanic friend, over 25 years BMW/Honda/others, who backs up what I'm saying. Fresh oil in the fall can run in the spring with no issues. That from a factory trained mechanic.

I still wait for any actual proof that the fall oil change oil has any significant breakdown. Nothing besides opinion has been published anywhere relating to this idea of changing oil in the fall then dumping the unused oil and changing it in the spring. Fact is this is the first forum where I've seen that. I've read. Show me...
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Old 12-23-2009, 06:16 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by markk53 View Post
In my 40 years of motorcycling I've NEVER seen gasoline gell over an Ohio winter! I would certainly run on oil in March that I changed just before parking my bike in November (although usually I get out about every few months at worst). In addition, I don't use fuel stabilizer, filling the tank full before parking the bike. A full tank has less surface area per volume of fule for the breakdown and evaporation of aeromatic fuel additives. Not so true with a partial tank. This seems to have worked for over 43,000 miles and about 12 years with my dual sport along with numerous motorcycles in the dealership that sat over the winter.

Having done my own maintenance and much of my own mechanical work over those 40 years, plus 22 years in and around a dealership doing sales and set up work I've never seen any manufacturer's recommendation to simply change oil that has been in an engine unused. In fact the set up manuals do NOT say to drain oil and put in new oil, they say to check the level and add if needed. Add this to the fact, as I witnessed on a tour of the Marysville Honda plant, that the manufacturers start up and run the bikes through a test run on rollers after a bit of a warm up, but not a really thorough heating, then break them back down a bit and put them in a crate in which the bike may sit for 6-12 months from manufacture to sale... Heck yes I'll run that fall oil change oil in the spring.

One more thing, I called and spoke with a mechanic friend, over 25 years BMW/Honda/others, who backs up what I'm saying. Fresh oil in the fall can run in the spring with no issues. That from a factory trained mechanic.

I still wait for any actual proof that the fall oil change oil has any significant breakdown. Nothing besides opinion has been published anywhere relating to this idea of changing oil in the fall then dumping the unused oil and changing it in the spring. Fact is this is the first forum where I've seen that. I've read. Show me...
You base your facts on something that you heard by word of mouth, seems to have about the same validity as what I was saying seeing how you can't prove that what I am saying is wrong and you base what you are saying on what someone told you. Oil will be affected sitting in an engine over the winter, affected to the point of critical failure, no, I never said that though. I said it would be a good idea and you should change it after the winter. Also you saying fuel stabilizer is not needed is untrue, google winterizing a motorcycle and its one of the first things they say to do, right before changing the oil.
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Old 12-23-2009, 06:24 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by sirgilbert357 View Post
I didn't take your response as rude...I was asking for a little explanation, and I appreciate the response. Oil changes aren't cheap though and people try to save money any way they can these days, lol. Anyway, what you said about flushing the contaminants makes sense. I would figure that synthetic oil would break down at a much slower rate than dino. So for those who don't ride that much, what would you say the interval should be time-wise for synthetic over dino? I've heard 3 months or 3k for dino of course, but what about synthetic? (I ask because I just change my synthetic every 3k religiously, regardless of time that has passed). And if your oil is mostly clean (say, less than 500 miles), why not just change it in the spring? Even though the oil breaks down, if you just drop the old oil out before riding the bike and put fresh stuff in there, it shouldn't hurt anything because it isn't that dirty. Like I said, I ride through the winter so this process doesn't apply to me, but its good to know. I'm a "details" guy...
You should quit listening and start researching. That 3 month/3000 miles interval was true when oils were straight grade in the 50s. The current quality of oils can exceed that without issue. There is no justification on any level I've seen. Read this:

The 3000 Mile Myth
The 3000 mile oil change interval has been pounded into people's heads for decades. It had a scientific basis when engines used non-multi-weight, non-detergent oil. It no longer has any scientific basis, but it is still being promoted by certain entities, most notably the oil change industry in the United States. This myth is also sometimes known as the "Cheap Insurance Myth." - http://www.nordicgroup.us/oil.htm#Engine Flushes--The Latest Scam

And this:
"Technically, engine oils have shelf lives of four to five years. However, as years pass, unused engine oils can become obsolete and fail to meet the technical requirements of current engines. " - http://www.carbibles.com/engineoil_bible.html

The fact is oil breakdown over a short period like 3 months is due to number of start ups, engine heat, and incomplete warm up leaving condensation in the engine. This is why some should change oil every 3000 or 3 months. When I was driving 60 miles one way for work in one run I changed car oil every 5000 and the dealership had no issues with that on warranty. I ride my bike in long runs with full heating, so I run 5000 miles on it - have for the past 43,000 without any issues. Now with short hopping the car 3000 is the rule due to type of use.

In other words that new oil is still good new oil, little has been done to break it down. Dumping it is wasting money. But go ahead if you believe what someone tells you without any backing it up or if it makes you feel secure.
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Old 12-23-2009, 06:29 PM   #30
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I have already been on the carbible website doing some research, however I don't change my oil every 3k, using amsoil I go double the recommended interval of 4k and run 8k before chaning. Fortunately for me I never winterize my bike, it gets ridden year round so my posts up until this point were strictly for advice to other members of the forum. I'm not here to tell someone what to do, just what I feel is best, everyone can decide for themselves, I would choose to be extra cautious on my bike but thats just me.
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Old 12-23-2009, 07:05 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by rexmitchell View Post
You base your facts on something that you heard by word of mouth, seems to have about the same validity as what I was saying seeing how you can't prove that what I am saying is wrong and you base what you are saying on what someone told you. Oil will be affected sitting in an engine over the winter, affected to the point of critical failure, no, I never said that though. I said it would be a good idea and you should change it after the winter. Also you saying fuel stabilizer is not needed is untrue, google winterizing a motorcycle and its one of the first things they say to do, right before changing the oil.
You mean how Honda and BMW trains it's mechanics is wrong? That the fact that no oil tesing has been presented to demonstrate that breakdown of oil in a short period when not used is wrong? That the fact that manufacturers don't change oil after running, much less recommend a drain and refill when new and in the crate after up to a year on a current model is wrong? All three are upon what I base my comments. The other is that most printed information does not back up the intervals, with the exception of what some of those with a financial interest in the shortened intervals will say. The 3000/3 interval is based on oil use before multigrade detergent oils and old metalurgy. It survives based on opinion and "what worked for my dad, my dad's dad, and his dad's dad". In other words it's held on since the metalurgy, straight grade non-detergent oil, and engineering of the 40s was the norm, not the modern multigrade oils and superior metalurgy and engineering of the present.

You're the one who made the comment "we will start seeing threads next spring of bikes not running great, bad shifts, etc. " If that doesn't hint of critical failure I'm not sure what it hints of.

As for fuel stabilizer, I didn't say not to do it. We used to tell people to do it when selling. I'm just telling you what I've done, knowing what I've learned in the industry, in engineering, and in research pertaining to the subjects. I know if I fill my tank full before I park it, all I have to do is drain the carb in the spring (or whenever) and the bike will fire up and run fine. That has worked for about the last 25 years, even with the poorer quality of fuel sold now. I also know that my changing of oil every 5000 miles in the car was not an issue when it came to warranty at the dealership, and it hasn't been an issue with my 43,000 miles on the KLX based on seeing the inside of the engine in the cam area about once a year, and the fact that I've never seen an oil failure at the dealership while there and none of the mechanics could relate a story to me. I have seen failure to put oil in and also putting a filter in incorrectly (Honda 250s) causing failure due to lack of oil, but that wasn't the oil.

In other words, I research and observe and question. When facts are present I make a decision based on them, not on "people have told me" or "my buddy says". I want to know why they say that, what backs it up. One guy changed his oil every 800 miles regardless. Another runs synthetic Mobil and changes every 15,000 miles with well over 100,000 miles of proof that it works for him. I do what I believe works for my use. I change at 5000 on the KLX because it runs in dust and I use petroleum based oil. If I ran synthetic on the road I'd likely do more like 8000, based on what I've learned, not on what I've heard.
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Old 12-23-2009, 07:09 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by charlo View Post
If my bike had old oil this time of the year I would change it but I would also ride once a week, I rode today 20 miles if there is snow or ice I start and move around in the garage .
Just my 2cents
Those short garage runs cause condensation in the mufflers... part of why there are so many older bikes with rusted mufflers. The guys that run them either for a full warm up or not at all have good mufflers, the guys that short hop around town and stuff where the exhaust doesn't get hot enough end up with rusty mufflers. In my opinion and from our observation at the bike shop over the years, do the rides when possible, skip the run in the garage thing, no cooling air passing and variable throttle and insufficient warming of the exhaust.
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Old 12-27-2009, 02:11 PM   #33
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The discussion here is quite informative. I think based on my usage I'll just continue to change my oil every 3k regardless of calendar time that passes - in my bike and my car. And yeah, I use full synthetic (Mobil 1)...so I probably COULD wait till 5k or even 6k with no issues, but I get my oil rather cheap and don't mind changing it. With the higher revving sport bike engine and the 100+ temps Texas often sees (and that's generally when I ride the MOST), I'll just keep changing it early. Not hurting anything and I don't mind the costs associated with doing it early. Sometimes peace of mind and longevity come with a cost, LOL.
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Old 12-28-2009, 02:38 AM   #34
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Usually when they talk about storing bikes they mean longer then a winter. There seems to be a tendency of people storing bikes for long periods of time, like years. As long as your oil isn't that old you should be alright.
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Old 12-30-2009, 10:35 PM   #35
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I'm a newbie here but I would like to throw my .02 in. I used to manage companies that ran heavy equipment, concrete mixers & concrete pumps. The engines in these things were big and could run into the 10's of thousands of dollars -easy- for a complete rebuild. I'm talking Cat, Detoit Diesel & Cummins. In the winter we had several machines being stored outside. This equipment was used in construction and construction is more or less a warm(er) weather business here in Michigan. According to our oil distributors there was no problem using the oil in the equipment that was sitting in an engine over the winter. (we used good quality oil as well as good quality trans oil, hydraulic fluid etc) The oil is being stored in an engine crankcase instead of a bottle or barrel. Most of the time we didn't go milage or engine hours to determine when oil needed to be changed, we used oil analysis. We'd drain a small amount of oil & our distributor would send it to a lab. The results would tell us what condition the engine was in as well as if the oil needed to be changed. This allowed us to schedule our equipment for routine maintenance, engine rebuilds etc to minimize breakdowns. Back in the 90's this oil analysis was relatively inexpensive. I never had a sample come back saying the oil was bad, substandard etc because it sat unused in an engine crankcase for a few months in cold weather. I'm not trying to flame anybody or anything, but just to share my experience. That being said I've changed the oil in my S 83 Boulevard prior to putting it up for the winter & will run the same oil in the spring. Depending on how I feel & how much I run the bike, I may change it again in the summer. Just a newbies .02.

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Old 12-31-2009, 07:23 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by smooth1 View Post
I'm a newbie here but I would like to throw my .02 in. I used to manage companies that ran heavy equipment, concrete mixers & concrete pumps.

We'd drain a small amount of oil & our distributor would send it to a lab. The results would tell us what condition the engine was in as well as if the oil needed to be changed.

I never had a sample come back saying the oil was bad, substandard etc because it sat unused in an engine crankcase for a few months in cold weather. I'm not trying to flame anybody or anything, but just to share my experience. That being said I've changed the oil in my S 83 Boulevard prior to putting it up for the winter & will run the same oil in the spring. Depending on how I feel & how much I run the bike, I may change it again in the summer. Just a newbies .02.

Jerry
This isn't flaming, it's actually factual. It is the thing that most of us can not do to check on the "old wives' tales" that come about on things like this oil thread and having tires damaged by a bike sit on concrete for a few months in storage. The actual science. Nice to see it. Thanks... of course I was one of the people who felt that a fall oil change was fine to run in the spring...
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:39 AM   #37
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Those that are recommending regular automotive oil for storage are giving bad advice if the bike it's going into uses a wet clutch, which is the vast majority of bikes on the market. On a wet clutch bike, never use regular automotive oil at any time. Automotive oil almost always has friction modifiers in it. Wet clutches hate the stuff, and you will too when you are prematurely changing friction plates. Use dedicated motorcycle oil. If you are using it for storage only, you can find generic motorcycle oil at most auto stores and other places that sell cycle oil.

For the record, I change my Amsoil synthetic in the spring and don't change it again until the next spring. Splitting my time between too bikes, and not having the luxury of a lot of free time to ride, each of my bikes probably only see 5000 miles a year.

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Old 01-03-2010, 04:14 PM   #38
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Going back to the original post, if I stored my bike without oil, my concern would be that maybe I'd forget & start it in the spring with no oil. A guy on another forum stored his 4 cycle snow blower without oil, forgot & fired it up with no oil.
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Old 01-04-2010, 12:26 AM   #39
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When I ship engines, I tag them stating "NO OIL!"
In multiple places.
Even after the phone calls.

Eric
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Old 01-04-2010, 12:30 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by Lurch77 View Post
Those that are recommending regular automotive oil for storage are giving bad advice if the bike it's going into uses a wet clutch, which is the vast majority of bikes on the market. On a wet clutch bike, never use regular automotive oil at any time. Automotive oil almost always has friction modifiers in it. Wet clutches hate the stuff, and you will too when you are prematurely changing friction plates. Use dedicated motorcycle oil. If you are using it for storage only, you can find generic motorcycle oil at most auto stores and other places that sell cycle oil.

For the record, I change my Amsoil synthetic in the spring and don't change it again until the next spring. Splitting my time between too bikes, and not having the luxury of a lot of free time to ride, each of my bikes probably only see 5000 miles a year.
With Amsoil you can get away with that!
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