Best Motorcycle Oil

The best motorcycle oil can improve your motorcycle’s performance. It also helps protect components against rust and other possible damage from constant friction and exposure to the elements.

Multi-grade motorcycle oils are the most ideal option out there. These kinds tend to complement lubrication needs whether the temperature’s too high or too low.

Motorcycle Oil Review

Mobil 1 98LD49 20W-50 V-Twin

Mobil 1 98LD49 20W-50 V-Twin is synthetic oil for motorcycles. This motorcycle oil makes engines cleaner and 15-20 degrees cooler. It does not get easily affected by cold and hot weather temperatures.

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Castrol 06112 Power 1 10W-40

This motorcycle oil by Castrol is known for its being slippery. With its race derived technology, it quickens the acceleration of the engine. It can also make your motorcycle run smoother and quieter.

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Shell Rotella (550019921) T6 5W-40

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 is full synthetic oil typically used in sedans and trucks. It makes engines run smoothly. It can maintain its viscosity in different weather conditions.

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Mobil 1 98JA11 10W-40 Racing 4T

This oil from Mobil 1 is a good one when it’s used for motorsports. It provides more lubrication, and also prevents motorcycle engines from wearing easily. It is a high performing oil that can provide longer mileage.

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Castrol 06116 Power1 V-Twin 20W-50

Castrol 06116 Power1 V-Twin 20W-50 belongs to the motor ‘silencer’ class. With the use of this, your motorcycle will produce a quieter engine sound. It can also make smoother gear shifts.

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Royal Purple 01316 Max Cycle 20W-50

Royal Purple’s 01316 Max Cycle is motorcycle oil that is literally purple – although that’s not the only thing special about it. It protects motor engines from rust and corrosion. It can also withstand high engine temperatures.

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Honda 08C35-A141L01

Honda’s 08C35-A141L01 manages to retain its viscosity even when the engine’s temperature is too hot or too cold. With its lubricating property, it can make bikes run smoother and quieter.

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Lucas Oil 10702—PK6

Lucas Oil’s 10702-PK6 is racing oil that has a long life. It also lessens the loud noise that motor engines make. This oil can also lower the temperature of the engine.

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Motul 5100 4T Synthetic Ester Blend

This product from Motul is motor oil recommended for 4 stroke bikes. It features Ester technology that enables engines to run smoother. This oil also reduces the noise made by the engine.

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Yamalube All Purpose 4 Four Stroke Oil

Yamalube All Purpose 4 Four Stroke, by Yamalube, can be used in almost all vehicles. It can maintain its viscosity in hot and cold temperatures. With the use of this, you can also make the life of your motorcycle’s engine longer.

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What to look for in motorcycle oil

Mineral oils: These oils are extracted from the ground. These have thicker consistencies. These are cheaper than the alternative, synthetic oils (75% cheaper than synthetic oil).

These are refined but may still contain some contaminants. However, the amount of contaminants is minuscule, too small to cause any real damage to the motorcycle engine.

Mineral oils are ideal to use on older motorcycle models. These will not leak because of the heavier consistency. Changing to synthetic oils often result in leaks.

Synthetic oils: These are man-made and do not contain any contaminant. However, some synthetic oils also use mineral oils as part of the production process.  

These are more expensive but believed to be better for the engine. However, it produces film surrounding the bore. This can lead to slippage and higher rate of oil use later.

These are ideal for use in newer motorcycle models. These do not form black, thick sludge resulting from oxidation but will become dirty over time.

What motorcycle oil does

Lubrication: It lubricates all the moving parts. It produces a thin film around the moving parts to prevent friction and faster wear of the metal parts.

Without motorcycle oil, metal parts will grind on each other as the engine runs. This will create friction and may even create sparks that can lead to explosions.

Cooling: Motorcycle oil will move throughout the engine when it is running. The movement helps in transferring heat, bringing it to areas of cooling.

Oil will bring the heat from within the engine towards the outer, air-cooled portions for heat dissipation. It may also bring heat towards the cooling system where the liquid will be cooled.

Cleaning: Oil also contributes to keeping the various engine parts clean. As it moves through the engine, it collects carbon and other impurities, trapping these within its structure.

Motorcycle oil also removes debris and sludge. As it moves around, it traps and suspends these compounds from the internal engine parts, bringing them out.

How to change motorcycle oil

Prepare the motorcycle: Turn the motorcycle on for 1-2 minutes to make the oil less viscous. Switch off and place motorcycle on a horizontal, flat ground.

Prepare the work area: Spread paper towels or old newspapers on the ground to protect it from any spills. Place the oil drain/container under the waste nut.

Look for the waste nut: Refer to the service manual to find where this is located. Use the socket spanner to unscrew the waste nut.

Drain old oil: Don’t drop the plug while allowing oil to drain for several minutes. Clean the plug and the seal once oil is no longer draining. Return the drain plug.

Remove the old oil filter: Use a filter spanner to remove the oil filter. Take note of how things fit and connect to each other.

Install a new filter: The new filter should be the same as the old one. Clean the filter base, apply a small amount of oil and install the new filter.

Why change motorcycle oil

Works harder than regular car oil: Motorcycle oil works both for the engine and for the transmission. It also runs at a much higher RPM compared to car oil. Hence, it has to be changed more frequently.

Oil breakdown: Oil breaks down sooner in motorcycles because of the heat generated during engine combustion. Oil vaporizes once it is heated enough and reaches a certain temperature — the oil’s flashpoint.

There are other factors that cause oil to breakdown, with heat as one of the main contributors. Broken down oils are not good for the engine and transmission parts.

Oil contamination: Oil gets contaminated no matter how well the motorcycle is taken care of. Contamination comes from debris, metal shavings and by-products of combustion process.

Debris can from air that enters through the air filter. Metal particles/shavings are produced by metal-to-metal contact within the engine. Combustion produces by-products that raise the oil acidity leading to internal corrosion.

Contaminated oil will damage the engine and the transmission if not removed and changed soon. Changing schedule varies, so refer to service manual for more specific instructions.