How to Select The best suitable Motorcycle Engine Oil
Engine oil in bike
Motorcycle engine oil is one of the most debated topics in the motorcycle world. There is always a lot of controversy and opinions on what type of motorcycle oil is best for your engine.
Considering all the moving parts your engine has, your motorcycle engine oil does have a pretty important job. There are a lot of different oil options out there and a whole lot of marketing dollars being spent to lure you to a particular brand. We will give you some solid information to help you pick the right oil while working through all the options.
What are the different types of motorcycle engine oils?
There are two main types of motorcycle oil to consider. Conventional motorcycle oil and synthetic motorcycle oil.
Conventional oil is made from crude oil while synthetic oil is made from manufactured compounds. Conventional oils tend to be less expensive and with proper maintenance can be just as effective as synthetic oils.
Climate Affect Motorcycle Oil
The climate you live in should be a major consideration when you are determining what type of oil to use.
Synthetic motorcycle engine oils hold an advantage in the cold-weather. High-viscosity conventional oils simply don’t flow in cold temperatures, and even low-weight conventional oils stop flowing at around 34 degrees Fahrenheit. Synthetic oil will flow at minus-50 degrees Fahrenheit, a serious advantage if you live in a cold climate.
A lot of oils brag about the protection they provide at high temperatures, but most of your engine wear happens at start-up and rarely does your engine see temperatures over 270 degrees Fahrenheit. 270 degrees Fahrenheit is the temperature where most conventional oils begin to fail.
The Need for Friction
Certain motorcycles are designed to have the motorcycle engine oil lubricate the engine and the clutch. Motorcycles with this set-up need to have friction. Synthetic oils tend to be very “slippery” and this is not good for a bathed clutch. Oftentimes synthetic oils can cause clutch slippage which will eventually lead to your clutch failing. For these motorcycles Conventional oils hold an advantage.
When should you change your oil on a motorcycle?
There are plenty of high-dollar synthetic oils out there that claim you can run their oil for 25000 miles before an oil change. They tell you this to justify the increased cost.
This is an issue because your motorcycle oil can last forever, but if it is dirty, you are not helping your engine at all. Metal parts in your engine break-down. Combustion creates debris and having all of that debris running through your engine for extended periods of time is not a good idea. Your motorcycle oil filter is only designed to catch so much debris, and if your filter is getting clogged, then you are just restricting your oil flow. High dollar oils are great for performance, but they still need to be changed at regular intervals.