Did my first oil change (nightmare) and I've got questions


18 replies to this topic
  • red7

Posted July 23, 2006 - 09:04 PM

#1

I have an '04 WR450. It took me close to an hour and I was just not prepared to have oil shooting out of 5 holes at once.

What I don't understand is why would they take a bike and make it where you have to change the oil so often and then make it so time consuming? I could understand often but easy or seldom but difficult but both often and time consuming seems crazy to me. Well......I'm not getting rid of this thing as I love it too much so I'll just have to find out some of your tricks.

First, do you do the full oil change (per the service manual) every time you change it? When you change it do you have to take out all of those little bolts to drain or is it ok if a little oil stays in it? The smaller of the two bolts underneath on the left side was a pain to get back in as it leaves no room to get a wrench in there to tighten it.

Also, what's the point of taking out the strainer? The holes in it were so large that it was totally clean as I can't imagine getting anything trapped in that. I didn't do anything with it and just put it right back in.

So what will happen if I just open the main drain bolt and drain as much out as I can and then refill it with fresh oil? I mean doesn't most of the oil come out? Do I have to clean the oil filter every time?

I'm just trying to be realistic because there's no way I'm going through what I just did every 4 rides so I'm trying to find a happy compromise. BTW- when people say to change it every 4 rides what dictates a ride? A 30 minute mellow cruise on a trail or a 4 hour romp at the track?

Thanks!

  • OneToGo

Posted July 23, 2006 - 09:42 PM

#2

This sort of thing has been asked before. I too think fewer and better placed drain holes could have been engineered into the design.
I now only unbolt first the front oil tank bolt and let drain, then the sump plug then the filter drain-I change the filter every second time. EVERY time during break-in.
Thats 3 easier ones and that gets most of the oil out. The strainer I removed only during break-in and will do again if I have the sump guard off. The little bolt behind the gear lever is a pain but if you tilt the bike over to the right most of that will drain out the main. So I leave that one now.
Think of oil as lubricating flush, keep it fresh, warm the bike before draining and you wont have problems. Also I use a magnetic plug (from TT) and it catches very fine particles. The filter is the main trap here though- use good quality items. Good motorcycle specific oil is also paramount - do a search for suggestions
Just my .02

  • Premo

Posted July 23, 2006 - 10:47 PM

#3

Personally I would like to drain every single drop of old oil out of my bike,
what is the point of contaminating the new oil?

I wouldn't go taking the strainer out every time, I have only pulled mine out once after break in. Even then, it was clean.

As for when to change oil, get yourself an hour meter. Change the oil every 5 hours or so. The hour meter will give you an accurate record of actual engine running time. This is the most consistant way to change your oil.

I do full change (with filter) every time. Get yourself a scotts or ready racing stainless steel oil filter and you will save a lot of money on oil filters.

I use my car's oil catcher bucket thingy to do my oil changes. Empty the frame first, then the two plugs on the bottom of the motor. I have got ratchet ring spanners that are the best! Gets in tight spaces like to get at that little 8mm drain bolt.

  • Beejay

Posted July 24, 2006 - 11:47 AM

#4

I drain the oil resevoir tank, filter & two bottom drains, every change, every third one i change the filter (std yamaha). I let the oil drain for at least an hour & tilt her over each side to assist draining. I removed & checked the strainer after break in & for about 3-4 changes after that & found nothing in the strainer so have stopped removing it. Maybe I'll just check it after every 10th oil change or so.
I use Maxima semi synthetic.

  • Kmorris

Posted July 24, 2006 - 03:26 PM

#5

A lot of folks don't seem to like taking that little 10mm bolt behind the shifter off when changing oil but I've noticed that after the larger holes have drained and I lean the bike over I usually get a little oil to pour out BUT the point is with that oil seems to come most of the particulates. That's after draining the sump.

For me at least I believe that's the reason for that little drain. I continue to remove it and each time a little sludge and particles come out that hole.

:thumbsup:

  • hartzpad

Posted July 24, 2006 - 03:37 PM

#6

If people recommend changing the oil at 5 hours, how soon does the oil start to turn black? I've got 3 hours on my fresh oil and it is still clear and looks very healthy and fresh. 50% dirt/50% street. If that is the case I think that 5 hour oil changes is overkill, 20 hours may be more realistic.

  • Bullwinkle

Posted July 24, 2006 - 04:07 PM

#7

5 hour oil changes is overkill, 20 hours may be more realistic.

I agree, every thousand miles (after break-in that is) is plenty except under the most extreme conditions.
:thumbsup:

  • Thumper_Bloke

Posted July 24, 2006 - 06:17 PM

#8

C'mon there's just over 1 quart of oil in there. It's simple to remove the frame bolt and the lower drain bolt. I'm doing it every other weekend of riding.

  • texas_hippie

Posted July 25, 2006 - 05:47 PM

#9

The smallest drain next to the shifter seems to be the one where all the real gunk accumulates. I remove the two front bolts holding the skid plate completely, and back out the rear most bolt, and just swing the skid plate out of the way. That small drain is then completely exposed, and easy to get to. By leaning the bike over, I get about a shot glass full of oil from this drain. This was my first oil change also, and I did notice some very fine metal particles in the oil, even though it wasn't completely black. This was my break in oil change, and it was done at 100 miles. I'm gonna go with the Scott Performance filter. It's good down to 35 microns, which is way better than a paper filter can do. Sixty nine bucks for the filter seems extreme, but it'll pay for itself in short order, if you change oil frequently, as you should. 1.16quarts ain't alot to work with. Don't forget to stock up on the O-rings for the filter cover, and tighten all three bolts by handfirst, before you put a wrench on 'em. And as any mechanic worth his salt knows, tighten them in a cross hatch pattern, a lil bit at a time.

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  • Turismo

Posted July 25, 2006 - 07:24 PM

#10

I agree, every thousand miles (after break-in that is) is plenty except under the most extreme conditions.
:thumbsup:

Manual recommends every 1000kms / 600miles. Mine is bad in 1/2 that time.
If your oil is good after 1000 miles, what sort of oil do you use?

  • red7

Posted July 25, 2006 - 09:25 PM

#11

Thanks for all of the input and sorry for not getting back sooner but I've been packing for our move to Mexico. I did get a Scotts filter by the way. I'm glad I won't have to hassle with the strainer again. I think I'm going to switch to just removing the few easiest drains and around what Yamaha recommends. This won't be the best scenario but it will help me keep my sanity. Plus if my bike only lasts 4 years instead of 10 because of it, that's ok as my time is worth more then if I need to get a new bike. It will give me a reason to upgrade soone :thumbsup:

  • Bullwinkle

Posted July 26, 2006 - 03:01 PM

#12

Manual recommends every 1000kms / 600miles. Mine is bad in 1/2 that time.
If your oil is good after 1000 miles, what sort of oil do you use?

AMSOIL MCF, and I clean the filter (Ready Racing) every time. Now whether it's "good" or "bad" at that interval depends on how you're defining those words. Does it look exactly like it did when it came out of the jug, maybe not but I'm still confidant that it still has essentially the same lubricating qualities as it did new. Of course different conditions make for different scenarios. I'm in Florida so just about everywhere I ride is sandy. Bad for sprockets and chains but relatively easy on the oil (except for the heat). Large particles (i.e.: sand) are more easily trapped by the air filter before they get to the engine. (All this assumes that we're using good quality air filters, and that they're properly oiled and seated.) But even if I was in a more normal environment I still would think 1000 miles was enough. I know the manual says more often, but car/truck manuals always say 3000 miles although good quality motor oil (non synthetic) generally doesn't break down until two to three times that distance. Also keep in mind that just because oil isn't still clear when drained doesn't mean that it's not still doing it's job.
:thumbsup:

  • xr_man

Posted July 27, 2006 - 07:30 AM

#13

can someone post a picture of this small extra drain ...Im not sure where it is....

  • TwoBobRob

Posted July 27, 2006 - 02:03 PM

#14

I change the oil every 300 miles or every other ride and the filter (with oil, obviously) every 600 miles. The old oil comes out just as clean as it goes in, no worries.

For the oil only change, i only release the frame bolt and main engine drain bolt. For the filter change, i let everything go and leave the bike to drain for an extended time, tilting the bike over to help things along.

My bike is an 03, so far all is good :thumbsup:

  • xr_man

Posted July 28, 2006 - 01:00 AM

#15

but where is this little extra drain screw pls !!!

  • johnnyjeep

Posted July 28, 2006 - 03:07 AM

#16

And as any mechanic worth his salt knows, tighten them in a cross hatch pattern, a lil bit at a time.[/QUOTE]

How do you cross pattern 3 bolts?

John in Vegas

  • red7

Posted July 28, 2006 - 08:40 AM

#17

AMSOIL MCF, and I clean the filter (Ready Racing) every time. Now whether it's "good" or "bad" at that interval depends on how you're defining those words. Does it look exactly like it did when it came out of the jug, maybe not but I'm still confidant that it still has essentially the same lubricating qualities as it did new. Of course different conditions make for different scenarios. I'm in Florida so just about everywhere I ride is sandy. Bad for sprockets and chains but relatively easy on the oil (except for the heat). Large particles (i.e.: sand) are more easily trapped by the air filter before they get to the engine. (All this assumes that we're using good quality air filters, and that they're properly oiled and seated.) But even if I was in a more normal environment I still would think 1000 miles was enough. I know the manual says more often, but car/truck manuals always say 3000 miles although good quality motor oil (non synthetic) generally doesn't break down until two to three times that distance. Also keep in mind that just because oil isn't still clear when drained doesn't mean that it's not still doing it's job.
:thumbsup:


How much does Amsoil cost compared to Yamaha 4 stroke oil? I may just have to get a few cases of that before going to Mexico. This thread is encouraging because it seemed like insanity to me the thought of changing the oil every few times riding. I have already had irrational thought go through my head where I've questioned, do I really want to go for a short ride today because that will mean I'm one step closer to another one of these gnarly oil changes. I'm just going to ride the bike and have tons of fun, change the oil on occasions and when it dies......get a new one.

  • 06WR450FSM

Posted July 28, 2006 - 11:24 AM

#18

The drivers for when to change motorcycle oil are contamination and viscosity shear-down.

Obviously, if the bike gets water in the oil from being submerged or the air filter is found to be letting dirt in, the oil should be changed ASAP.

Beyond that, the oil does lose viscosity quickly since it runs through the tranny. But I suspect the Yamaha engineers knew that when the service intervals were established. Synthetics generally retain viscosity better since their molecule length is more uniform than conventional oil, which is a mix of short and long chains.

All oil, including in cars, gets dark quickly while still lubricating properly, so people here that change their oil just because it looks dark are wasting their time and money. But hey, that's their option.

So IMO, if your oil isn't getting contaminated, switch to a good synthetic - Amsoil, Mobil1, Redline - and ride a bunch! Also, since our bikes are water cooled, I suspect that oil thicker than 40wt isn't doing the motor any favors, at best just robbing power.

Do change it frequently at first (~a few times in the first 2000 miles) to flush out any abrasive break-in materials before extending the intervals.

  • Bullwinkle

Posted July 28, 2006 - 05:03 PM

#19

How much does Amsoil cost compared to Yamaha 4 stroke oil?

I don't know the Yamaha prices, I've never bought any. AMS MCF dealer price is $74 and change for a case. Dealer pricing is available to anyone by paying $10 dollars to join their "Preferred Customer Program". (I hate to say that because there are a lot of guys on this board that have pretty strong feelings about these pay to buy programs.) I guess you have to buy online to do that (use that program and get the dealer pricing), which is what I do anyway. AMSOIL dealers aren't exactly on every street corner, especially out here in the sticks where I live.
:thumbsup:




 
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