F650GS Oil/Filter Change FAQ
Drafted by Joe M. #628
Edited (and photos) by Kristian #562
Edited and Updated by Winter
Please read the Disclaimer before
attempting any work in this FAQ.
28 November 2005
For all other Generic Questions see either the
Classic Oil Change FAQ or the
Replacing the engine oil and filter on an F650GS is not difficult if you
know exactly what to do. These instructions presume no special knowledge or
skills, and will walk you through the procedure in detail. Your BMW dealer
will sell you a kit containing the parts you need for about $10.00 (filter,
rubber o-ring, crush ring for oil tank, copper ring for drain plug). Your
bike's toolkit will contain all required tools, except for a socket for the
drain plug (24 mm, or 15/16"), and a torque wrench. If you do not have a
torque wrench, try to borrow one (Pep Boys lends tools to customers). If
you cannot borrow one, you should still be able to do the oil change; just
be sure not to over-tighten things.
- The spec is 10000 kms. Many change their oil more often than every 6000 miles (10000
kilometres). Even with modern oil and metallurgy, some feel this service interval
is just too long. The action of the transmission wears out oil very quickly. In one study Mobil One Synthetic
oil lost 15% of its viscosity after being used for 1500 miles in a motorcycle.
In a car it lost only 5% of its viscosity in 3500 miles.
- Get good oil. Motorcycle oils do have some additives
that aren't found in car oils which may not adequately protect your motorcycle
engine. BMW AG have in the past strongly suggested switching to a synthetic type oil after 6 to
10 thousand miles or over 10,000 kilometres for the Classic. However SEE
The Service Dealer showed me a Bulletin for NO Synthetic in the GS/Dakar
in the Oil FAQ first.
- If you haven't gone 6000km's
in a year, change your oil anyway. Why? NOx (Nitrous Oxide) from blow-by
residing in the oil combines with water to form nitric acid which eventually
overwhelms the additives included to neutralize such nastiness. The nitric
acid then begins to etch your various bearing surfaces, which will wear quite
a bit more rapidly than they will in an engine with regular oil changes.
Basically... fresh oil is cheap insurance. Flash 412 (CO). The oil could treat
the cam shafts, gears and bearings harshly by etching various steel parts in
the engine. Richard #230: 1997 Funduro.
GS manual says "Brand-name HD oil, API classification SF, SG or SH; suffix
letters CD or CE are permitted; alternatively, brand-name HD oil of CCMC
classification G4 or G5; suffix PD2 is permitted." Does not say nothing about
Synth or Dino. (Oyvind).
- It is advised that while your bike is under warranty
that you use an oil specified for use by BMW. For more Oil info and Opinions
on Oil to use, see the
- How many Fasteners are there? As a matter of Interest?
(Bolts & Clips)
16 for the body panels
3 for sprocket cover
3 for filter cover - NOTE! The '05GS has ONE extra
bolt. It is one of the connectors for Jump-Starting the bike. Do NOT Torque to
1 for neutral wire - Not necessary to undo
4 for skid plate
3 for oil tank
1 sump plug
1 tank plug
1 for rear cover (behind seat)
1 for the seat
This list I only removed the left body panel and left the oil tank in place
(just drained through the drain hole). If you use a Hand Pump to Drain the Oil
Tank, you don't even need to remove the LHS Panel, let alone the Tank
I also left the neutral wire in place and the sprocket cover (but I got the
Touratech cover, which is a bit more out of the way, I think.)
It does seem like an awful lot when you count 'em up that way though, doesn't
it. Ted in TO
|Dual Spark GS|
The dual spark GS (2004 and later GS models) is almost the same as the
single spark GS (2003 and earlier GS models). The only real difference is
the twin spark models use a dipstick rather than a sight glass to check
your oil level.
Section 1: GS/Dakar Oil/Filter Change
Tools and Parts
||Generic Size - For non-BMW Purchases
||BMW Part #
|Filter Cover "O-RING"
||11 41 7 654 013
|Copper Crush Washer for Sump Drain Plug "GASKET RING"
||24x30x1.5 /Cu (Cu = Copper)
||11 41 7 652 949
|Oil Filter "OIL FILTER INSERT"
||11 41 2 343 452
|Crush Washer for Oil Tank Drain Bolt "GASKET RING"
||07 11 9 963 041
|Possibly an O-RING for Oil Filler Cap every 20-30,000 km's
||11 43 2 345 827
Some Dealers really crank up the Torque on those
A few people have rounded the threads taking it off. The Part # for a new one is
11 41 7 652 939 Jaz #1126
washers and O-rings are generic items that can be purchased at any good
automotive/hardware shop. A bearing Shop should have O-rings. Bring your old one
if you need them to get you the right size is a good idea. Note that the Classic
and GS Oil Filters and Filter Cover O-rings are IDENTICAL, however the GS Sump
Plug Crush Washer is Copper and the Classic's is Aluminium. Why.? They made the
change not long after the GS model came out. BMW even put it in writing. I am
not 100% sure about the classic 650 but the GS yes and I don't see a big
difference in the blocks. They originally published a torque spec of 76 ft lbs
on the drain plug for the GS. They realized the error and made the change to
brass washers at that time. I have checked the boxes of filter kits and sure
enough the Classic filters are all boxed with aluminium washers. The G/S filters
all have brass washers. I think BMW is using up old stock. However I have
checked and the info I have on brass washers is for the G/S and not the classic.
have the optional BMW engine guard the torque numbers for re-installing that
are: Haakon #626 (Norway-F650GS).
The M8 x 70mm = 19 Nm
The 3 M6 x 35mm = 8Nm
The capacity is 2.3 liters. Do NOT overfill it. See
Checking Oil Level in the
Oil Sight Glass below.
|Universal Filter Kit|
When ordering an Oil Change Filter Kit, you
may get a "Universal Filter Kit" that will work for several bike models, which
is why the part numbers don't match the ones above and the reason for the extra
- The kit number is # 11 11 7 658 311
- The Aluminum Gasket A8x11.5 is # 9963041
- The O-ring 59.52x2.62-N-NBR70 is # 7654013
- The Oil Filter Inlay is # 2343118
- Then there are 3 copper washers, one of
which I know is for the drain plug-the other two must be for other models. I
have no idea which # is for the bigger Drain plug gasket, there are no sizes
indicated on the part list.
- Copper gasket # 2343010
- Copper gasket # 7652949
- Copper gasket # 2343240
(Thanks to Runaway #1259)
See also Alternative
Sources for Oil-Filters.
There are three discrete areas that need attention. Oil drains from
each one. They are (1) the oil tank; (2) the crankcase; and (3) the
See the Two Easy Alternatives below if you are ONLY Changing the Oil.
The following procedure must be carried out however, if you doing the Oil
AND checking the Valves.
- Place bike on Centerstand. Start the bike, allow it to reach
operating temperature (the fan should cycle on) [Ed: Or, you might
actually RIDE it] Turn bike off.
- Remove seat. (The seat is removed by first removing the little,
locked cover at the
rear of the bike, which exposes a latch. Pull on the latch, and then lift the
- There are seven stainless steel Torx-head screws that need removal
or loosening so that the left panel of the faux "gas
tank" can be removed, exposing the oil tank. (The oil tank is hidden
underneath the "gas tank," and is the item to which the black
oil filler cap on
top of the "gas tank" screws on to) (For the uninitiated, Torx
is the trademarked name for a star-shaped screw head)
- Six of the seven Torx screws are removed, and one is loosened.
Remove the following: the
that is exposed when the seat is removed, the
screw at the front
of the "gas tank" slightly forward of the black filler cap, and
the four screws that go through the
silver-colored plate (This Picture shows the RHS one, but is similar
on the Left) to which the left front turn signal is attached. When
these last four are removed, the turn signal will hang. That's OK. You
can also unplug
the turn signal wire (Just squeeze the black tabs at the sides and pull
gently) if you want and remove
it completely from the bike (very good idea).
seventh screw, which merely needs to be loosened, is underneath the panel, about
an inch behind the rear-most portion of the front beak-like fender.
- Remove the oil filler cap. The panel can now be lifted up and off
the oil filler neck. The lower part of each "tank" half fits in
grommet. Be gentle or you will break the
on the panel ! Use Vaseline on the grommet before installing the
panels and assembly/disassembly will be easier next time. There is a
relatively tight force-fit between the panel and neck, just use gentle
pressure and it will come off.
- The black
oil tank, which has fins built in, is now visible. The tank needs to
be removed from the bike so it can be tilted, to enable a complete draining or
you can just put the bike on the sidestand which will give it enough lean to get
pretty much all of it out. If you do not want/need to remove the tank, skip step
8 and part of 11. (Thanks to Paul).
- First, loosen the
on the tank. (It is a hex-head.) This is a drain bolt. You want to
loosen it and then re-tighten it finger tight so that it can be removed
without too much difficulty once the tank is off the bike.
- The tank is attached to the bike at three places: one is a
bolt, the other two places are
C-clips. Dislodge the clips using a screwdriver.
Note that under each of the
C-clips is a black
washer, which you should also remove, so as not to lose them. Then remove the
uppermost bolt, which holds the tank against the air-box. Take care not to
drop the black
plastic spacer. The oil tank should
now be free from the frame. Take CARE removing the top bolt and when you put
it back, do NOT overtighten or it will
Pull Out of or Rotate in the Airbox!
- Remove the previously-loosened
drain bolt, and allow the oil to drain into a
receptacle. (A long funnel may be useful in directing the oil flow.) Tilt the
tank to assure that it is dry.
if you're only changing the oil and don't need to take the cover
off for anything else:
Easy Alternative #1
OK this may not be earth breaking news or anything like that but I did not want
to remove the "tank cover' and pull out the oil tank. I admit I'm lazy and the
thought of removing that stuff makes me mad, they (BMW) can not put in a remote
drain, (winter project). Went to the local auto store to get oil and picked up a
hand pump for 10 bucks. Put the hose in the oil tank and the other hose end in
the bucket and started pumping, two minutes later the tank was empty. OK some
will say I did not get all the oil, how much oil is still left in pockets that
don't drain. I can live with the thought that a few table spoons eluded capture.
Thought it was of interest. Thanks to Tom#1089
Easy Alternative #2
Remove the oil tank from its mounting to empty it. Just remove the drain
plug with the Dakar on the sidestand and catch the oil in a milk jug. ECho
- After the
oil has drained, reattach the tank to the frame. Tighten the upper bolt to 9 nm.
(Or if doing this by feel, "not too tight, not too loose). NOTE! The
Rubber plug in the Airbox that the Upper RHS Oil Tank Bolt goes into can turn in
the Rubber Grommet in the Airbox and the Brass insert is pretty thin, so don't
over torque it when you do your Oil Change. See
Oil-tank bolt-grommet Pulls Out of or Rotates in the Airbox The other place where they use a
similar arrangement is the Airbox Drain, which leaks oil past the Rubber Seal,
down along the outside of the Drain Tube. Great. I couldn't tighten it any
either. What's wrong with a cast Plastic Nipple like the Classic?. I've never
over-filled the Oil, nor dropped the bike, so
oil coming up into the Airbox is a
bit of nuisance, especially with that dreadful Drain Arrangement.
Looking for where this goes? Q. A black metal spacer, about 1/2
inch thick by 3/4 inch diameter with a 1/4 inch hole in it fell out of
someplace. I know the black plastic housing the air filter goes in was off and I
think I was removing the coil from the plastic cylinder head cover when it fell
out. Could not determine where it came from. Any one know? A. There's a
(black plastic) spacer between the oil tank and frame!
- Then replace the two clips. The drain bolt must be replaced, using
a new crush washer that comes with the kit. Tighten the bolt to 21 nm,
which is fairly tight; the washer will actually be "crushed,"
hence its name.
- Slide the previously removed body panel over the oil tank filler
neck, engage the panel into the middle panel that is still on the bike, and
replace the six Torx-head screws. Tighten up the screw that was merely
loosened, making sure the panel is engaged on top of it. Then replace the
oil tank cap so stuff doesn't land inside the tank while you work on the other
- Remove the bash plate. That is the silver (apparently aluminium)
plate at the very bottom of the frame, containing three triangular holes.
The plate is attached to the frame with three Torx bolts. Remove all three,
and then remove the bash plate.
- The drain plug
is at the very bottom of the crankcase, in the middle. (There is a similar
looking plug off to the side. Leave that alone. The drain plug should have
a black label saying "Made in Italy" and "
or something like that)
- Place your oil receptacle directly under the drain plug. Then
remove the plug using a 24 mm or 15/16" socket. The oil will drain
out. It should be hot or warm. Gloves are recommended.
|Direction To Unscrew Oil Drain Bolt|
Many people have trouble trying to figure out which way to
unscrew the oil drain bolt. Always keep in mind: the F650 bikes do not
contain any reverse threaded bolts. In other words - clockwise will
tighten a bolt, and anti-clockwise will loosen a bolt. The following
things may help you work out the correct direction:
- Lay down on your back looking back up at the oil drain plug
- Use a ratchet on another bolt first. Once you know what
direction on the ratchet is correct to loosen the bolt, change to the 24mm
- I use a ratchet and I set the direction by holding the socket in my left hand and trying it. That way it can turn only one way whether it is upside down or right side up. (thanks to norbrat)
- When you removed the bash plate bolts, keep track of the direction
you used for the two bolts under the bike. Unscrewing the oil drain bolt
is the same as unscrewing the bash plate bolts.
- If you are unsure - ask a competent "friend/mechanic".
You are better off waiting five days for a "friend/mechanic" to show
you the correct way to do it, than damaging your oil drain plug / engine
cases. Also see the note regarding
Sump Plug Removal on a GS/Dakar, below.
- While the oil is dripping,
clean off the drain plug,
and especially the little metal filings that have adhered to the
"magnetico" portion of the plug.
- After the
oil stops dripping, (note
the Mesh Filter in the Picture) replace the drain plug, making sure to use a new copper
ring. The torque spec is 40 nm, which is "nice and strong." Don't
over-tighten it, or you'll have a job getting it off again. See the
Classic Sump Plug FAQ for ideas on what
to do if you do not want to over tighten it, but don't want it to leak or worse,
- Reattach the bash plate, using the three bolts. The torque is 9nm.
- To access one of the bolts on the
oil filter housing, you need to
remove the plastic sprocket cover. This is the item that says "650" on
the right side of the bike. There are three Torx bolts attaching the
sprocket cover to the bike. Two are on the bottom, and one is recessed,
going right through the cover. Remove all three bolts and the sprocket
cover will come off.
- The oil filter cover sits right above the sprocket cover. It is
circular and is about 4 inches in diameter.
- Before removing the oil filter cover, dislodge the black wire underneath it, first
studying how it is routed.
This is the neutral indicator wire. It should be
dislodged because oil is going to spill out of the filter housing when you
remove the cover, and you should try to avoid dousing that wire with oil if possible.
(A little bit doesn't hurt, so long as you mop it up). If you cover it sufficiently with a cloth,
dislodging it is not absolutely necessary. Arrange a Cloth under
the bottom of the filter cover, out over the edge of the bike.
- Remove the three Torx bolts that are equidistant around the
perimeter of the oil filter cover. As you are loosening the third one, oil
should start leaking out. BMW sells a tool that engages on the frame and
supposedly directs the flow of oil neatly into your receptacle. (Tool no. BMW 11 7 511).
The part is a small trough that hangs off 3 little pins under the oil filter
cover. It directs the oil away from the frame so you can put a catch it in a
receptacle. When I asked my dealer how much it cost he told me "about $68"
Sixty-eight bucks!? Never mind...See Oil
Drip Tray Alternatives below. Anyway, remove
the third bolt and pull off the cover.
NOTE! The '05 and maybe later GS has
ONE extra bolt. It is one of the connectors for Jump-Starting the bike.
- After sopping up the errant oil, remove the filter by pulling it
straight back. (You may have to use a tool to encourage it to leave its
home) After the filter is removed, clean the filter housing using a clean,
lint free cloth.
- Inside the filter cover is a black rubber o-ring. Pry it off with
a screwdriver. Coat the new o-ring with fresh oil, and place the O-ring
over the cover.
- Coat the rubber ring inside of the new filter with fresh oil. Press the
new filter into the filter housing. The hole in the filter, of course, must face
the bike. There is a protrusion onto which the filter will seat.
- Reattach the filter cover using the three bolts. The torque spec
is a "not-too-tight" 10 Nm. NOTE! The '04 and maybe later GS
has ONE extra bolt. It is one of the connectors for Jump-Starting the
bike. Do NOT Torque this bolt to 10Nm! If you do, it will break, like this
- Re-route the neutral wire as you found it, if you dislodged it.
- Re-attach the "650"- emblazoned sprocket cover. The spec
is a hand-tight 2 nm.
Refilling (with new Oil)
Remove the oil filler cap on the "gas tank" and pour two liters of oil inside. Start the bike and let it idle for thirty seconds.
(This forces oil to circulate and lowers the level in the oil tank.)
0.3 liters of oil.
the seat. Replace the "glove compartment" cover.
In order to get proper readings from the
sight glass, you need a
good ride of a few miles to get things circulating and settled. You may
find that you need to add another 0.1 liter if you like the oil to be at the
maximum of the sight glass, rather than in the middle.
Section 2: Misc Questions and Problems
Sump Plug Removal on a GS/Dakar
Lots of people have had a lot
of problems removing the Sump Plug on the Dakar. Dealers seem to do them up VERY
tight. As the head is not that DEEP, and many sockets have a Bevel at the
Leading edge, the real hex part of the Socket starts only 1-2mm into the Socket.
In order to stop rounding the corners of the NUT, consider the following.
- Use a SIX sided, not a 12 point Socket.
- Use a Breaker Bar for Leverage.
- You can always have the socket machined down at a machine shop to
remove that bevel completely, making it into a shorter socket (that's one
way to make the special "low overhead socket" for the steering
head nut). Marty #436-Chicago-97 F650F
- If you are willing to butcher a socket, you can just grind it
down. It probably does weaken the socket somewhat, don't expect a
warranty. Todd #389.
- Track down the nearest Snap-on truck and get a six-point flank
drive socket. These have a relief in the corners of the hex so that they
rest on the FLATS of the bolt head, not on the corners. They will
absolutely remove any hex head fastener, no matter how rounded the corners
are. Will probably cost $20, but cheaper than ruining the plug. You may be
able to order from
www.snapon.com, but would have to pay
- Some owners (including me) have noted that the sump plug is often
over-torqued beyond belief from the factory, and easy to round. Use good
tools, including a six-sided socket or box-end wrench. This seems to be
a chronic problem on the GS's. My first oil change attempt resulted in a
trip to the dealer when I couldn't get the darn thing off. Ended up
putting a new sump plug in, just to be careful. Last oil change, I was in
my dad's workshop, and he had a box-end, 6-sided 24mm wrench with a
breaker bar attached. I have no idea where he got that, cuz I had a hard
enough time coming up with a 6-sided 24mm socket. Came right off, and it
never felt like it was about to let go. Now if I can just get that wrench
"liberated" from his toolbox.. Robin #79
- In my first attempt at an oil & filter change on my 2002
F650GS I bunged up the oil drain plug. The soft metal is now pretty much
rounded off. Can't get a good angle on it with a Vice Grip. Any other
suggestions on how to remove the drain plug? I realize I must get a
replacement drain plug. Problem started when I put a 12 point socket on it
(Bad Idea) instead of a six sided socket. I'll buy that too for the next
time. dAnal #1159.
- I have changed the oil twice now in my 01 F650GS and both times
the drain plug was very tight even though I torqued the bolt to spec. I
use a pipe the goes over the end of the socket wrench for extra leverage
for removal of the drain plug. I also wedge my foot between the socket
wrench and floor to ensure that the socket does not dislodge of the drain
- Just bought a 2001 F650GS sight unseen from Perth over 3000km
away. ......As a matter of policy, I changed the oil as soon as I got the
bike. The sump plug was on very tightly - in fact I rounded the corners
of the plug off - yes I was using the correct socket. What saved the day
was one of those Metric sockets that work on the flats rather than the
points of a plug or bolt. Will use one all the time from now on. A friend
who has worked extensively with aluminium says aluminium into aluminium is
a no-no, and was quite scathing of BMW for doing this. Dealer is sending a
new plug - his mechanic admitted that they have from time to time had to
hammer the next size down socket onto the plug to remove it. Rick
- I've had it with the aluminum foil sump plug on my GS. I've now
managed to complete 4 partial oil changes on my bike as I've never been
able to get the damn thing off. Does anyone make one that isn't made of
Nerf metal, or one that accommodates a different tool? I find that the
negligible depth of the nut head makes it very difficult to grip with
conventional socket/wrenches. Frustrated. Andre Whistler, BC #1119
- Are you using a SIX sided socket? If not, get one.
Are you using a breaker bar? If not you can get a good one at an auto parts
store for about 10 bucks (about 70 Canadian, right!!!). Get a long bar. Mine is
18 inches and works like a charm. My method (while laying on my back on the left
side of the bike) is to put my right hand on the actual (6 sided, not 12)socket
and hold it on the bolt. With my left hand I push on the end of the breaker bar
toward the front of the bike and it comes instantly loose. I then re-torque to
40 nm, which is factory spec. I have heard of people getting confused with the
upside down bolt and accidentally over-torquing when they think they are
loosening. Is your bolt stripped or over-torqued? I got my slightly used GS with
a bolt that had been over-torqued and then stripped. Once I got it out, all has
been fine. Denver Jim.
- Just like Denver Jim says, use a breaker bar and the
right socket. When it comes loose it will feel as if you broke it off. Just one
big "tink" and it's loose. BTW-The technical term for the "Nerf metal" is
"Softium." This special material has been used on both motorcycles and bicycles
for almost a century. Rod, CO '02GS
- Can you use a file to modify the bolt head to give
you more purchase (fit deeper into the socket)? Also if its buggered you might
be able to file the head down to the next size down or to a closer SAE size. I
have literally hammered sockets onto bolt heads. I wouldn't do that here because
of the case, though light tapping should be OK. I guess you could also sacrifice
a socket and use JB Weld or some Proto-Poxy to just glue the socket to the bolt
head. Anything for more friction. Have you tried to loosen it while its cold?
Maybe expansion is an issue. I'm just guessing here. Chris in Santa
Cruz, CA #782
- Even if it is a 6 sided socket (the only thing to
use on a bolt like this), I have noticed that different sockets can have
different dimensions on the opening lip. Some are very rounded, making them easy
to slide on a bolt, but not suitable for a shallow bolt head such as this one.
Try to examine and borrow some other brand of 6 pt sockets and see what I mean.
Find one with a tighter precision lip, less rounded on the inside edge. I'm
looking at a dozen different socket sets of 3-4 quality brands, with 3-4
generations of replacements. There's an amazing difference in the same Craftsman
socket over 30 years, let alone between the same size Craftsman vs. an SK or
Snap-On. Todd #389
- After my friendly Costa Rican mechanic had over
tightened the engine oil drain plug on my 2000 Dakar, Gerry and I had extreme
difficulty in removing it, taking a corner or two of the head and eventually
requiring an air wrench. I contacted (the dealer) to enquire about getting a new
one, and after a lengthy pause from the first person I talked to, was told she
couldn't see it on the fiche, and was I sure about what I was asking for. I
asked if she could talk to one of her mechanics, explaining that this part is
the one on the underside of the motor which you take out to drain the last of
the oil. A guy came back to the phone and categorically informed me that no such
part exists, and that the only drain plug is the one for the oil tank /
reservoir on the top of the bike. I tried explaining again, but he was just not
getting it, and in fact he was getting quite pissed with me. I said " I can't
really believe I'm hearing this, but thanks anyway". I phoned the competition at
another BMW dealer, and I had the part number 1 141 76 529 39 within seconds.
Checking Oil Level in the Oil Sight Glass
by Rick #815 BC Can
Typical Problem: What did I do wrong? So
last night I did my first oil change on my '02 GS. Anyhow, I filled my tank with
the prescribed 2 liters, ran the bike for 1/2 a minute, then put in another .3
liters. Went for about a 10 minute ride: easy riding 1st and 2nd gear just
around the 'hood. When I came back, there was NO oil in the sight glass.
Nothing. No leaks, no drips anywhere, and no oil in the sightglass. I put in
another .1 liters of oil, and still nothing in the sight glass. Checked the FAQs
again this morning, seems like the d*mn thing should be full, or at least
showing up on the sight glass. (If i take the oil cap off and look inside, there
is still oil in the tank, it's just kinda low). What did I do wrong? Where's my
This is the BMW Service bulletin, checking oil.
- On GS, put on center stand. GSD hold bike upward.
- The procedure is the same for either a cold or an engine that is
at operating temp. In either case, the engine is to be started and left to
idle for 1 min.
- Shut engine off and check site glass.
- Note: Due to the position of the
sight glass in the
oil tank, a bubble can form at the MAX mark on the sight glass. If this
happens, the sight glass cannot accurately show if the oil tank is
overfilled. In this case, it is very important to remove the oil filler
cap and visually check if the oil level is too high.
- That's from BMW head service dept.
RDW, Vancouver BC, From the latest edition of my dealer's monthly
Tech Tip - Checking Oil Levels:
Check the engine oil when the motor is at operating temperature. Run the
engine for at least 1 minute. With the motorcycle level, upright and the
engine fully warmed up, but not running, remove the dipstick and wipe clean.
Re-insert dipstick but do not thread into the hole. The proper level is half
way between the max and min marks. The capacity is 2.6 liters. Do not use
F650GS Dakar Check the engine oil when the motor is at operating temperature.
Run the engine for at least 1 minute. With the motorcycle level, upright , the
front wheel touching the ground and the engine fully warmed up but not
running, read the oil level in the sight glass. The proper level is in the
middle of the sight glass. The capacity is 2.3 liters.
- 4 Valve
R Series Check the oil with the motorcycle level and on the center stand, warm
oil or cold (note: RT, RS, S warm oil only). If the engine been running, wait
at least 10 minutes for the oil to drain down into the sump. The proper level
is the middle of the sight glass. The capacity is 3.75 liters.
Check the oil with the motorcycle level and on the center stand, warm oil or
cold. If the motor has been running, wait at least 10 minutes for the oil to
drain back down into the sump. The proper level is the middle of the sight
glass. The capacity is 3.5 liters.
Check the oil with the motorcycle level and on either the side or center
stand, warm oil or cold. If the motor has been running, wait at least 10
minutes for the oil to drain back down into the sump. If the motorcycle is on
the side stand, the proper range is from the middle to the top of the sight
glass. On the center stand, the proper range is from the bottom to the middle
of the sight glass. The capacity is 3.5 liters.
- For all
motorcycles, care should be taken to ensure the oil is not over filled. 400ml
or .4 liters is the difference between the minimum and maximum levels on
either the dipstick or the sight glass. When adding oil, please use a quality
HD oil, API classification SF, SG, or SH; suffix letters CD or CE permitted.
When topping up the engine oil, do not mix mineral and synthetic oils.
- Checking the oil level on my Dakar after one minute of running will reveal a
sight glass full of oil. Even idling for ten minutes the glass is full. You need
to run it on the road for a least ten minutes, maybe more. Idling at a stop
light you can look over and check the oil even with a running engine and it will
read exactly full. (half way up the glass) The amount of oil in the engine is
correct since I added exactly the required amount when I recently changed it.
Paul in NJ
- I used exactly 2.3l after an Oil Change and before (from
BMW) the Oil Level was always at the top of the Sight Glass. Now, it goes to
exactly 1/2 way up. Kristian #562
- The bike has to be really warm. When I had the
Dakar, I did the same thing for the first oil change. Added a bit, added a bit.
Then the bike got good and hot, and I took out a bit, took out a bit.
- Just operate the motorcycle until you see the sight
glass half full. Mine is half full idling at lights. Sometimes my glass is FULL,
sometimes there are bubbles in the oil, sometimes the glass is EMPTY. Generally,
you need to operate the engine of a long time to make the sight glass work.
- The mechanic at the dealership told me that most
people end up over filling the oil because they don't run the bike long enough
(I guess it takes a while to get the right pressure?). He said it needs to run
long enough to go through a regular warm-up period (he actually said run it for
at least 10-15 miles) and then you should park it level and wait at least 10
minutes before checking the level in the glass. At this point the oil level
should be half in the window. Funny thing is, he told me to park the bike level
by putting it on the center stand...whenever I do that the oil level always
covers the window completely-and that is after HE changed the oil. I guess
centerstand won't truly level out the bike since it's nose heavy...that's my
best guess anyway. Runaway #1259 (CO) '03 black F650GSA
- I had my bike serviced recently (by a dealer, so it
_has_ to be right </sarcasm>). When cold, I can barely see some oil in the
window when the bike is on the center stand. When I bought the bike, the last
oil change was done by the previous owner. The oil level was almost at the top
edge of the window under the same condition. its_xls, 2001 F650 GSA.
Foggy Oil Sight Glass?
I have purchased a used 2002 F650 GS Dakar and I am having problems
with the oil sight glass fogging up. As it is very difficult to tell my
oil level because eather the sight glass is fogging up or the oil is
foaming creating a fogged image in the sight glass. I was woundering if
any one new about this problem and if so; how to fix this problem?
- Take off the oil filler cap and check the level by looking in the
tank. Robin #790
- I think that too much foaming may mean too much oil. K7LRO
- I had the fogging up trouble for a while a couple months ago. I
went away by itself. Razz
- I bought a little key chain flashlight that I can shine into the
window to increase the visibility. Logan's Ride
- The sight glass is replacable if need be but most likely if you go
out and ride the bike and get the oil good and hot . Burn the moisture out
of the top of that tank and the problem will go away. Odds are the bike
has been ridden short distances or started and not ridden prior to you
purchasing it. My bike does the same thing if I commute in the city on
it. You need to ride it a long ways in cool weather to warm up that tank.
Two-Part Oil Change?
I stopped by my local BMW dealers today and asked the service manager about this
partial oil change situation. To my surprise, he confirmed that this is indeed
now BMW's recommendation regarding the 600 mile service on the singles - drain
only the sump and replace that oil, and leave the oil in the remote reservoir.
He had no idea why BMW had made this recommendation other than for saving money,
said it made no sense to him, and they continue to do a full oil change in his
facility. This seems downright bizarre to me, and if it were my bike I would
insist on a full oil change. Saving the cost of about 1.3 - 1.5 quarts of oil,
even the most expensive oil, just wouldn't be worth it to me.
it's just to change the sump oil, maybe the theory is to inspect the magnetic
sump plug for metallic debris, more than to change the oil? After all, if
there's good oil in there, 600 miles is pretty early to change it all, but
what's on the magnet might be important? Todd #389
- 1000km oil change. I never will never understand this partial oil change idea
but they insist on it. I personally would only put BMW 10w40 in at this
change. What you do after that is totally up to you. Well maybe they have gone
to this stupid procedure on all the new 650's. They pushed it on the CS first.
I asked they service reps and wrote BMW. No one could tell me why???? I want
to know. Why?? All they say is do it. Personally I changed all of my oil at
600 miles. I think there is a number of folks who baby these bikes when they
are new and the ring won't seat. Thus they want the break in oil in the engine
longer. I rode mine hard from the get go and believe everyone should. You end
up with a better running longer lasting machine when the rings seat without
carbon on them. StuporXtech #1130 01 Dakar Or
- For GS/Dakar, in 1000km service, they have to change MOTOR OIL (no tank oil)
and oil filter...In my 1000 service, they only charged to me 1 liter...the
maintenance manual for GS and GS Dakar specified it... they are different oil
change (total or partial... total is 2.3l, and partial is 1 liter?) Zippo
Last May I changed my oil sump plug and installed a brass plug containing a
temperature sensor. The thing came with a copper washer (from Touratech). Now,
whenever I change the oil, I've been forced to reuse the same copper washer as I
can't find a proper metric replacement. The FAQ states that such a copper washer
is part of the BMW oil change kit for the F650 GS, but that is not the case in
Canada. The washer here is a simple rubber o-ring and won't do with this brass
plug. Up until now, I've done 3 oil changes and one at a dealer. The dealer had
no idea how to get a copper washer (they weren't very resourceful). I've tried
only one automotive supply store here and couldn't find it. Does anyone in
Canada know where I can find such a copper washer.
long as you don't over torque the plug, your washer will give you many
uses. It helps to anneal it, however, as copper "work hardens." Use a propane
torch or similar and heat the washer until it glows red, then let it cool
slowly. I usually support the washer on a piece of wire. Don't get it too hot,
or it will melt. Harl #380
you MEASURED it, you could find some online or using the yellow pages and
calling hardware stores. Flash 412 (CO)
Drained MORE Oil out than the FAQ/Service CD says?
Problem: I have a 2002 GSA and just changed my oil.
Out came about 3.4 US quarts of oil. Documentation (service CD & our FAQ's) say
it should only hold 2.43 quarts (2.3 l). Any idea why I got 3.4 quarts out of it
instead of 2.4?
Short Answer: Because it was overfilled. Why? because someone
couldn't read the sight glass or filled it and checked it cold. See
Checking Oil Level in the
Oil Sight Glass.
it kind of bad to run these Rotax engines with too much oil? I recall reading
something about the excess pressure it causes having undesirable consequences.
Brad, N. CA., 2001 F650GS - Inmate #1002
- I believe that too much oil would only damage a wet sump engine. The Rotax
engine has a dry sump and its pump only takes what oil it needs from the tank
to lubricate the engine. Any extra oil goes stays in the oil tank. If the tank
can't hold the oil, it gets dumped on the ground. Richard #230
Leak from around the Filler Cap:
Q. A little oil seeped from around the filler cap area on my 01 650 gs
on the way to work this morning. Anyone else had this problem or know what
might have caused it? Gene / Barwick, Ga. USA
First CHECK no-one overfilled the Oil level. It takes 2.2 litres ONLY!
- The filler cap is a pretty simple screw in cap with an o-ring. I
had mine leak pretty bad once but it was because the tech was sloppy
putting on the faux tank cover and didn't get the cap on tight. You might
pull the cover and make sure it's not leaking from somewhere close to the
cap, like a crack. I would think if the cap is on tight and the o-ring
isn't damaged an overfill condition would vent to the air box. Mike639
- Covington, WA
- Is this cap tight? Have you noticed that the spark plug tool in
the tool kit can be used to tighten the oil cap tight enough to keep
vandals out. Stuportech
- Same thing happened to me when I pulled off the left side faux
tank cover and forgot to tighten the cap. As others have said, check the
tightness. Robin #790 Chicago '01 GSD
- I had the same problem. Fixed it by putting in a new O-ring.
Dan#823 in Orange Cty, CA
Oil Filter Removal Drip Tray
Well the BMW (Tool no. BMW 11 7 511) for this is a small trough that
hangs off 3 little pins under the oil filter cover. It directs the oil
away from the frame so you can put a catch it in a receptacle. When I
asked my dealer how much it cost he told me "about $68"
Sixty-eight bucks? So what are the alternatives?
- A piece of tin foil can do the same thing. The Savant. dAnal
#1159 (central Mass)
- Cloths suitably arranged.
Seacuke's coke Can! A Cheap oil filter drain tool
The last time I changed my oil, I rigged a Coke can to perform
the task of the mysterious BMW oil-drippings-avoidance-tool at a fraction
of the cost. I made mention of it on a post and was asked to post photos
by someone, can't remember who.
Anyway, I did my 6K service over the weekend. As part of this
service I did an oil change, and this time took a few pictures of the
To build the tool, begin with a coke can and some good tunes.
Drink the coke, listen to the music. When done with the soda, cut open the
can (I used dikes this time, metal scissors would work way better). You'll
want to have about all the cylindrical length and about 1/2 the can left
It should look roughly like one of these:
The cylindrical shape works its way into the gap between the
filter's little housing and what I'm guessing is the Dyno cover quite
Even after removing the oil filter's cover, the Coke can tool
stays in place.
It's all over but the cryin'.
One thing to note though... I allow the oil to drain real
slow-like. Especially when I'm first opening the compartment. I undo the
top bolt first, then the left lower bolt. Finally, I undo the right lower
bolt a turn or two, then pop the cap off. It's best to keep one hand on
the tool when draining the oil; it holds itself in place, but I don't like
to risk it.
Each time I've been able to get the oil drained out of the
filter area with nary a drop on the rest of the engine.
Weak GS Oil Tank Lugs?
by Rod, CO '02GS
Well I think I pushed the envelope for dual sport riding this
weekend and fell backward (yes the long way to the ground) on some hard dirt.
The bike landed on its left side and the shock of the fall broke one of the
mounting lugs on the oil tank. This is not too surprising since both mounting
lugs are on the bottom of the tank (heavy cast oil tank creates significant
"moment arm" force on lugs). Anyone else break one of these lugs? If so, what
did you do to repair it? I'm going to try JB-Weld, and I wonder if this stuff
will do the trick on a hot part.
Well, here's what I did to beef up the whole somewhat weak design. I ran a
bicycle cable around the oil tank and around the flange that the battery sling
connects to near the bottom of the battery. It is taught, but not too tight. I
put some rubber material between the cable and the oil tank for protection. If
I had a camera I would take a picture. I think I could drop the bike off a
cliff and it would stay put now. The interesting thing for the inmates here is
that the fall was not that hard. No speed involved, just a long way to the
ground. Nothing else broke or bent. That oil tank just weighs a lot.
Alternative Oil Removal Point
(Not Recommended, ed)
by Kevin #1092 Black 02 GSA
I just did my first oil change this week and I can share an
issue I caused by trying a easy short cut. I now have an oil leak as a result.
There is a rubber oil line that comes from the rear bottom of the tank and feeds
into a metal line that goes to the bottom of the crankcase; I guess this is an
oil return line.
Disconnecting the metal line on the bottom of the crankcase
looked like an easy way to gravity drain the oil tank from underneath.
Anyway, there is a hollow bolt that goes through the fitting at the end of this
metal line and into the crankcase. The location is right beside the drain plug.
There are two copper crush washers on either side of the fitting. The hollow
bolt goes through a crush washer, then through the fitting, then through another
crush washer and into the bottom of the engine.
The BMW oil change kit does not contain these crush washers
and my old ones looked to be in good shape so I reused them. After getting it
all back together I've got a leak around this fitting now. I went ahead a
removed the tank anyway and was able to drain a significant amount of additional
oil also so this shortcut wasn't a great idea to begin with. I can only hope
that the leak is due to using the old crush washers and not something like
damaged threads in the crankcase for the hollow bolt (I did not use a torque
wrench, just my heavy hand and a long wrench). I'll be draining the oil again
soon and removing the crush washers to take to the dealer to get replacements.
- These bits you describe are called a "banjo fitting" and
they are very susceptible to overtightening. The problem is that the two sides
of the fitting are parallel, creating a sealing surface of about 1/8" to 1/4"
wide, depending on the size of the fitting. After they've been overtightened,
the surfaces are no longer parallel and have a seal of about 1/64". Hopefully,
it IS just the crush washers and you haven't binned the fitting. It's really
important when working on engines comprised of a combination of steel, alloy,
and plastic to use the proper torque settings. The money spent on a GOOD
torque wrench will pay for itself in short order. David, #476
Oil Volumes and Location
Not sure if anyone is interested or care, but here's some info on oil
volumes. I did my first 600 mile oil change last night, used the
hand-pump method for the upper oil tank (yes, I am kinda lazie). Measured
all three oil volumes from the three diff part of the bike - upper oil
tank, oil filter area, and sump tank. All measurements has a roughly
5-10% M-O-E in it. (Based on an 03 GS)
- Upper Oil Tank = 1.625L
- Filter = 0.1L
- Sump Tank = 0.625L