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newbie - how often should i check my engine oil?

Discussion in 'Bling and Appearance' at netrider.net.au started by livingstonest, Aug 2, 2005.

  1. hi the service manual says i should check oil every time i ride. but realistically how often do you guys check it?

    i got a honda cb250. if its low which oil can i use?

    and where's the damn fuel guage on this thing???

  2. Oil , coolants, tyre pressures are all checked before i head out for a ride.
  3. I check my oil once in a while thru the window glass on the side of the engine. You should be able to see the level and the clarity of the oil through that. As for the type of oil, your local bike access. shop should be able to tell you exactly. That's how I found out what my VTR takes.

    Fuel gauge? I don't know about CB250s but your's may not have one. My VTR doesn't have one... I just go by kms travelled between fills. I try to fill it up after about 200kms or so just to be safe.

    Someone will probably reply with much mroe detailed info... but here's my 2c worth.
  4. Oh...and if the info is of any use to you, I use Motul 5100 Ester (SAE 15W50) on my VTR250.
  5. oh ok thanks........and man this is gonna sound dumb but how do you check tire pressure?

    do you have a guage?
  6. I don't have a gauge at home - perhaps midnight does?

    I check my pressure at the servo on occassions (not everytime I ride like midnight)... maybe, like, once a month or something when I fill up.

    If I am heading out for a long ride, I'll check the fluids before heading out and the pressure at the servo.
  7. If you were riding a fzr i would say every time you stop at the lights you should jump off and check. However the regularity of you checking your engine oil would depend on the condition of your bike and the riding style. I work on every second fuel stop = 200-300km. My bike uses about 200ml every 500-1000km.

    I would however say that a bullet proof motor like the cb250's would be alot less demanding. I tell customers that if they are worried check every time you fill up fuel. and then if you find that you are not loosing any oil then stretch it out gradually.

    Most high reving low clearance high load bike engines require a fully synthetic oil of a 15W-40 or similar. However the cb would probably accept a 20W-X mineral oil but it would be best to ask your mechanic for his opinion.
  8. The air dispenser at the garage these days is a fancy computerised device that takes a lot of the guesswork out of the process.
    Have a look at your moaners' annual (Oh, sorry, Owner's Manual) at what the pressures should be. Set that pressure on the console of the machine, and clip the hose onto the valve. The computerised compressor will either add air till the pressure you set is reached, or if the tyre is over-inflated to start with, let air out.
    Don't forget to replace the valve caps and tighten them up; they are there to stop dirt and dust getting into the valve and possibly causing a slow leak.
    If you're going on a highway ride, or a trip, add a couple of PSI to the maunfacturer's recommendations.
    Tyre pressure is very important in maintaining good grip and ensuring best wear, same as in a car.
  9. thanks all. appreciate the responses there. its my first bike so i don't know s*@% about looking after it!
  10. If you want a cheap pressure gauge, this month's TWO magazine has one attached to the front. That way you can check your tyre pressures cold, before you ride to the servo. ;)
  11. Ok everyone has been just waiting for me to jump in as I'm so biased towards my Bond! The CB 250 Night Hawk doesn't have one of those spirit level gauges we have a dip stick and as our bikes are so reliable & use so little oil I only check mine periodically eg once a month but if he starts to to tell me all is not kosha this is the first thing I check, Having said this my chain has been more of a bug bear than my oil levels!
  12. service manual should have what type of oil your bike needs
  13. livinghonest, check your oil regularly at first to determine whether its using much. Keeping the bike spotless will help you spot leaks if their are any. If it does leak, get it fixed. My CB's a 93 model and still has never had to be topped up. I find replacing the oil every 5000k (or 6mths) seems to be ideal as it doesn't get too dirty. Honda recomend Shell SV4 motor oil available from your honda dealer. I use it and have had no dramas. It does cost about $30 for 4 litres but you get a few changes out of it.

    I think you'll fing the Owners manual says tire pressure should be 28psi. The best way to check is to get a good quality tire gauge. Autobarn/Supercheap generally have reasonable prices. Otherwise find a servo with the newest gauge you can find and try to use it exclusively so you know how the bike feels at different readings. You can put a little more air in for highway use but don't go overboard. Bikes handle differently when the pressure changes and you might find too much makes it harder to ride than leaving it at 28psi.

    Listen to Bond Girl when she says pay attention to the chain. Keep it lubed. I find I have to give it a spray after 200-300k or it dries out and starts to crunch. Don't forget to degrease with metho (NOT WD-40) and relubricate the chain when you wash it.

    The CB's a great bike. They're as tough as old boots and if properly maintained, it'll probably out live you. :)
  14. Easy answer 'whenever you can be arsed'


    Seriously though, once every month should be fine for your type of bike (average usage).
  15. Metho? I think you'll find that kerosene works far more effectively for cleaning the chain and since it's oil based theres minimal risk of drying out the linkages.
  16. thanks for the great advice seany!

    when you wash is the bike running or off? someone told me to have it running so water doesn't get into certain parts but i dunno.

    also what and how do you wash it? then after i wash i degrease chain and relub?

    yeah i really love this bike. mine's a 2000 model with 30,000km on it but it runs and feels really good. i'm still learning and have found it really easy to ride, very predictable and has smooth power, especially down low. i love the engine braking ability as well, keeps me in my comfort zone.
  17. Why the hell did I say metho?? :shock: Thanks jd, I think I've been working too hard. Yes, Kero's the word I was thinking of. The bottle of blue stuff. Metho's for windows and keeping ants out of the shed.
  18. Degrease first using Kero, not metho (I'm tired). Then wash everything with bucket (Kitten auto wash I like but any will do) & sponge, then rinse with hose. It doesn't seem to care as long as the seat's on. Then dry and allow the chain to dry completely. Then lube. Lube works best if the chain is warm because it seeps in better. I tend to spay around the whole chain once after it drys then immediately go for a 5-10min ride to warm up the chain and blow dry any moisture on the bike I may have missed with the chamois.

    If water does get to the electrics under the seat, spay it with WD-40 and it won't be a problem. Make sure that you also dry under the rim of the fuel cap. Water tends to get stuck their and could cause corrosion over the long term if you're not careful. :)

    PS there's no need for the bike to be running when you wash it. Even if it was I don't see how it could prevent water getting anywhere.
  19. oiul checking frequancy .

    if its a triumph , every day :LOL: :LOL:
  20. Unnecessary. Hasn't leaked or burned a drop in 5 years.
    You DO, however, need to perform a ritual excorcism ceremony before every ride, to dispell the Prince of Darkness! :p

    And even then the bugger will still get you.