Acceptable Oil Usage Question - - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 5:59 pm Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2007
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Acceptable Oil Usage Question

Hi All,

First post here. I love the GT but am starting to question it's long term reliability. I have had all of the surging/bucking issues & a faulty brake pad light etc but all were fixed by the dealer under warranty no fuss no muss. I've owned my 07 KGT for about 12 months now and am concerned about it's oil usage. It now has 11,000 miles on it.

The warning light (!) on the dash comes on every 1500-2000 miles and I stop and check the dipstick and sure enough it is below the MIN line. After it is serviced the oil is usually towards the top near the MAX line. I should also add that I check the oil after a good long ride and don't let it sit very long before checking it. I add about 1/2 - 1 quart and the oil warning light goes off. The dealer uses BMW Motorcycle Oil 10w 50 and has always serviced the bike close to the mileage as specified in the maintenance schedule.

The dealer says 1 qt per 900 miles is considered acceptable usage even on K bikes by BMWNA and is not prepared to look into the matter further even though this issue has happened 4 times now.

The KGT was my dream bike which I had planned on keeping for 100k miles but now I'm left wondering if I should dump it and get a different bike.

Let me know whether people think I really do have a problem with my bike and if so any tips on working with the dealer and BMWNA in order to resolve it.

Any help much appreciated.

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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 6:13 pm
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Location: Mountain View, CA, USA
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Originally Posted by trumpy
The dealer says 1 qt per 900 miles is considered acceptable usage even on K bikes by BMWNA and is not prepared to look into the matter further even though this issue has happened 4 times now.
1 quart per 900 miles!? Damn, that's a lot of oil. I made it from the 600 mile service to the oil and filter change at 6K service (actually done at 7100 miles) without ever needing to add oil. I'd think something was seriously wrong if it used oil that fast.
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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 6:33 pm
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Location: Marshall, TX, USA
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Find another dealer. I now have 33K on my '06 and it never needs oil between it's 6K oil changes. Something is amiss there.

Doug Turner
'86 Concours
'99 K1200LT - gone
'06 K1200GT - the new kid in town
'08 Wing - gone
Marshall, TX
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 6:50 pm
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Oil Usage

I am not sure how your dealer/tech specialist can assert that 1 quart in 900 miles "is acceptable usage". That indicates you have a leak somewhere, either in the valve train or the rings. These high compression (BMW et al) engines hold their performance stats by burning their fuel most efficiently and that does not mean excess oil that is cycled through the converter.
If you are burning more than 1 quart between 3k mile changes and your dealer says its normal, change dealer and get another opinion. My 07GT has just turned 22k miles and is less than a pt low after 4,500 miles. I changed to synthetic at 12k, but it still does not burn any oil. My 93 K11LT was using about the same after 106K miles before I bought the GT.
Good luck on your quest. Keep us posted.
Ride safe.
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 6:53 pm
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My 2006 K bike uses exactly zero oil and gets run HARD everytime it's ridden which is in twisties everytime.

My advice, take the bike out and run the fuck out of it including hard engine braking. I've had too many bikes to name and all were run hard and have never had an engine or oil useage problem. My R bike used oil until 18K, then quit...this is normal for a boxer.

Ride the bike hard.
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 8th, 2008, 9:55 pm
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Keep Records and Question Their Logic

In my last effort, I got to the min level from max in 5500 miles. 900 miles is not acceptable, especially when you are triggering the warning so often. I'd document your oil usage per fill up and check the spark plugs. With your consumption you should see some white smoke in your exhaust, if not, then it's going somewhere. You need to contact BMW directly and start documenting (in writing) that you have an issue.

BMW oil, if I remember correctly, is a synthetic blend. I had issues with my K100RS with oil consumption when it was new, flipped to straight Dino oil and the rings finally seated and consumption went to almost nothing between changes.

Last edited by beavtm; Aug 8th, 2008 at 10:01 pm.
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 9th, 2008, 12:13 pm
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No oil usage from 600 to 6000 mile service....

Deep Blue 2009 K1300GT
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 9th, 2008, 6:26 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area Ca, ca, usa
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Mine doesn't use a drop of oil in 66,000. I'd find another dealer or beat the crap out of (or just bypass) the current one.

edit: I have used the Castrol GPS 10W-40 (what the book tells you to use) since day one. It is synthetic based (probably a blend).
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 9th, 2008, 7:13 pm
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Mine doesn't take any oil between the 6K service interval. I ran it pretty hard in the first 1000 miles before I got back to the dealer too for the 600 mile initial service.

If your state has a smog inspection for cars and you are burning that much oil, it probably would fail a smog check if you had them just check it out on their machine. With that paperwork in hand saying "failed," BMW would have to fix it.

You could also call a couple of out-of-state dealers and ask their service managers how much is appropriate. I don't think it is listed in their DVD service manual.

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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old Aug 10th, 2008, 11:32 am
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Location: Long Beach, CA, USA
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25k miles on mine and never needed a drop of oil between 6k services.


07 K1200GT
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