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Check Oil Level Warning Coming On

Discussion in 'Servicing & Maintenance' started by darrell, Apr 26, 2017.

  1. darrell

    darrell Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Interesting Peter and I have had our 'check oil level' warning has come on just below half glass. Mine did on a trip I'm currently on. I was checking each morning and it was right at the bottom of the red dot the day it came on after I had the bike on the center stand overnight. Mine also showed up on my Nav V with an indication to check oil level. It did not do it again if I put the bike on the center stand and did not start again for 15 minutes but did come on if left on the side stand. I stopped by a BMW dealer and their Master Mechanic put the bike on the BMW computer to check and it indicated low oil. He shared with me the sensor in the bikes is sensitive to oil levels if below the center dot especially if on the side stand and the bike is up righted and started immediately. He put in enough oil to being the level just below the top circle. I've had no indicator come on since then which was 1200 miles ago and have noticed no difference in the shifting with or without the clutch. I'll ask my regular mechanic when I get home his thoughts. I need to go in for an oil change and new tires when I get back home in another 1500 miles.
     
  2. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Interesting. I never had the oil light come on and I have had the oil just below half full before ... Good to know.
     
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  3. darrell

    darrell Well-Known Member Contributor

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    The light does not come on, just a flashing bar across where you find the temps, etc on the bikes display that says check engine oil. When you press the icon on the Nav V it says check oil at next fuel stop and if okay have bike looked at by a dealer. I believe if the light came on you'd be below the low line on the circle.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2017
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  4. Marty P

    Marty P New Member

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    Yep had that happen to me as well. Just needed to top it off.
    Actually it's nice to know that the display warnings are not just idiot lights letting you know that you're already screwed.
     
  5. darrell

    darrell Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Very good point you make the warnings do work or at least on oil level.
     
  6. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I changed my oil last week and set the level at the middle of the window. While riding around I didn't notice any obvious warning, but when stopped and checking the oil level "OK" selection, the window was blank. After returning home and filling the sump up with another pint, the level went halfway between the middle line and the top of the window. Now my oil level is happy and it now says "OK". Maybe that is why dealers like to overfill the sump just to make sure that the oil warning doesn't come on. :confused:
     
  7. Lee

    Lee Well-Known Member

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    That's how it should work. You should not get a warning unless the oil is below the circle.
    I have heard of other bikes having bad oil level sensors.
    I agree, check with your Tech when you arrive home.
     
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  8. Charles

    Charles Active Member

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    I had the same thing happen to me twice. The dealer replaced the oil sensor and it has not happened since. The warning went off twice even though I had plenty of oil. Mine was full to middle of circle to give you an idea of how much oil there was when the light came on.

    My dealer did say they are very sensitive. It works like the low fuel light. It is warning you to add oil before it is to late.
     
  9. Fjaoos

    Fjaoos Member

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    My machine told me to check the oil level too but after I switched the ignition off an on again the warning dissappeared.
    Did anyone else notice that?
     
  10. MrVvrroomm

    MrVvrroomm Well-Known Member

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    fill it up to the top of the glass and it'll never come into alarm....
     
  11. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    But I only fill it like that after maybe 5 minutes after the engine has been shut off. And I do it gradually. If you fill the oil like that when the engine is hot, you run the risk of over filling.
     
  12. Charles

    Charles Active Member

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    If you start the engine while it is on the side stand is may also think it is low. Mine has done that once but was okay after sitting on it and restarting.
     
  13. darrell

    darrell Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I agree with MrVvrroomm in filling to the top of the red circle. I experience the same as Charles if oil is lower than top of red circle and I have the bike on the side stand when I fill with gas and then get on, upright and start immediately. If I wait 10 seconds to start the bike after uprighting the warning does not come on. Check the oil in the morning before you start it and if in center of eye glass or higher just ride it that day. If you see a large spot of oil under you bike then you might have an issue.
     
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  14. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Fill the oil to the top of the glass and it will not throw the warning light if started on the side stand. I do it several times.
     
  15. Fjaoos

    Fjaoos Member

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    Forgive me for this very stupid question....But why do I even have to add oil? Where does it go?
     
  16. SauRoN

    SauRoN Well-Known Member

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    Same place your petrol goes.

    Out the back.
     
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  17. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Engine oil is consumed to varying degrees by any internal combustion engine. You will want to top up the engine oil periodically when it falls below the manufacturer's recommended oil level. Failure to have enough oil could have the oil level warning light come on, or if it gets too low, damage to the engine.

    The User Manual does a good job of answering the "how" in your question:
    Engine oil.PNG
     
  18. Dave

    Dave Well-Known Member

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    I only start the bike when it is upright, either when sitting on or on main/centre stand. I did add the to another thread but it is a known issue on sidestand started engines, 4 cylinder especially, that the last place the oil splashes up to is the last cylinder on the right. Starting it level gets oil down both bores, all bores etc. and the same for valve stems getting oil. Something on youtube I saw, Honda 4 cylinder, and wear was uneven, due to cold start on sidestand and oil consumption.
     
  19. Bill the Cat

    Bill the Cat Active Member

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    I had the oil light come on during a group trip. I had to waive the rest of the group on, fretted about the oil light and prayed to find a place where I could buy a quart, as I was out in the boonies on a Sunday. Followed directions in the manual of stopping the bike, putting it on the center stand and waiting a few minutes for the oil to fill the sightglass. Crawled under the bike, closely inspected for any oil leaks/drips. I never ended up adding oil at the time as the sightglass had the oil dead center, and I would rather rely on that than a sensor. Conclusion - everything was ok, however the oil light prompted a (warranted) freak out that ruined that day's ride, and the oil light went out on the lonely ride home.
     
  20. Peter Burridge

    Peter Burridge Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Filling to the top of the glass isn't an ideal solution. It definitely affects gear changes in a bad way and if an article I read was to be believed it also affects performance as registered on a dyno. Increased drag and foaming levels are two possible outcomes.

    Mine came on during a long trip, after some serious bend swinging in the Scottish Highlands. I checked the level and it was mid glass. I didn't fill and it didn't return. I was only a few hundred miles from a service.

    I'm okay with it. Internal combustion engine oil levels on a motorcycle are not a science of the exact.
     

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