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No oil in the viewer?!

Discussion in 'Maintenance and Servicing' at netrider.net.au started by kb1200, Apr 3, 2013.

  1. So I went to check my oil levels through the viewer as documented in the service manual. I noticed that there was no oil in the viewer though? How is it possible that there is no oil inside? I'm a bit worried as to what to do as I don't have the tools to change oil and have never done it before. Here is a picture of the glass viewer. http://imgur.com/m7Z9CnF
    When I open the oil cap, the gears inside look wet but I don't see anything submerged in oil.
    I've tried booking in for a service a couple days ago (at everything two wheels) but haven't got a reply yet. Kind of worried to drive it anywhere now though.

    Any suggestion on what to do?

  2. Are you checking with the bike still on the side stand ? You need to get the bike upright and on level ground to check properly.
  3. Yeah I got a friend to hold the bike up straight while I checked this.
  4. get a bit of oil and top it up if its low, is the answer....
  5. Ok, well you don't need any tools to top up the oil. Just go to a servo, Supercheap or Repco and buy suitable oil and pour it in until you can see it in the sight glass. Your manual should have the specs for the oil you need.

    Then get the mechanic to check it out.

    Its not a good idea to run the motor without oil.
  6. I don't know what oil was originally in there. Is it alright if I mix oils? I can't seem to figure out what happened to all the oil in the first place, I haven't seen any leaks though.
  7. The manual says 10w-40 oil, is this common oil found in a servo? Also if the preexisting oil (or whats left of it) already in the bike is a different viscosity, is this going to be a problem?
  8. Super cheap auto $20 for 1 litre of 10w40 bike oil that will hold the fort for now
  9. 10w-40 is common just make sure it is suitable for motorcycles. (and make sure it is 4 stroke oil, NOT 2 stroke). You should be able to get Castrol 4T at most auto shops or larger servos. Motorcycle shops will also be able to help.

    You are going to have more problems if you run the bike without oil than you are from mixing oils.

    The oil can only go one of two places. If there are no leaks, then it has been burnt by the engine. Excessive oil consumption usually means worn or broken piston rings.
  10. Alright, I will get to super cheap tomorrow and fill the oil up. One last question, in the user manual, it says if oil pressure is bad the oil light will stay on, my oil light always goes off after idling for a bit. Is this normal for low oil levels?
  11. Yeh that's normal.

    One tip when you top it up is only pour in say 100ml at a time and wait a minute before checking the glass. The difference between the bottom of the glass and the full line can be very little on some bikes. The oil also takes a minute or so to trickle down to the sump.

    The point to this is overfilling is bad and it's very easy to do so take your time!

    Edit. Also make sure it's not totally full also. If the bike isn't dead upright it can go higher (or lower than the sight), get your mate to shake the bike a bit when your checking the slight, if its full you'll see it sloshing around.
  12. Well its good that the light is going off because that means you have oil pressure. If you have no oil the light would stay on and that's definitely not good.

    How long since the last service ?
  13. It had a road worthy done about a month and a half ago, but for some reason I don't think they really serviced it too much. I know it had new brake pads and brake fluids done about a month ago. Hopefully I get a call back from everything two wheels soon, I think it is over due for a checkup.
  14. ^ No roadworthy requirement on oil level (AFAIK). They would not have filled it or even looked at it unless you asked them to.

    Just get a 4L bottle and top her up. Very easy fix.
  15. As mentioned the bike must be upright and on level ground, to check the oil level in the sight glass.
    Don't use car oil (I know some with more experience & knowledge will tell you different, but as a novice... get bike 4 stroke oil)
    Castrol 4T will do the job. (I use Gulf Western SynX 3000, in all my 4 strokes)

    A basic service on a bike is fairly easy, and something you should aim to do yourself, not only to save a few $$$, but to ensure the job is done properly and regularly. Also, you will pick up any faults early (I keep a log book for everything I do on all my bikes). (Google & youtube can help you with servicing info).
    Being in the country, I have limited choice for servicing facilities, closest for me is around 200kms away, so I had to learn early, or be with out a bike.

    Good luck with it and let us know how it all goes..(y)

    • Like Like x 1
  16. No oil in the viewer doesn't mean no oil inside. First obvious sign on no oil inside will be engine volume is louder. A second clear sign is gears will become much harder to change. May have gotten them the wrong way around.

    Put some oil in. Doesn't really matter what it is, but make sure there are no friction modifiers - it will say on bottle.

    Give it a 5 minute ride and then unscrew the sump plug letting the oil out. Make sure you undo the oil lid on side of engine to let air displace the oil. Put plug back in and refill. At this point, take note of the odo and keep regular watch on oil level (every few hundred km). This will give you a ballpark number on how quickly you are loosing oil.
  17. given that he has only just picked up the bike in the last few weeks and its age i would be doing filter too.
  18. Thanks for all the help guys. I topped up the oil and the levels are fine. I'm taking the bike in on Thursday next week to Intyre motorcycles for a service. Bike is running fine though, just need a few little things to get it up to top shape.
  19. #19 RedHelmet, Apr 5, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2013
    I was worried about my engine oil level in the past before a ride as it didn't reach the sight window when cold. A workshop manual for the VTR250 (very similar engine to the Spada) is linked below. See page 3-14.

    According to the manual the bike should be warmed up then switched off for a few minutes before checking. I assume this allows the oil to expand as it's warm and then mostly drain back into the sump for measurement.