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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings,

I was having a discussion about the various issues I am having with my 2009 K1300GT with a friend. He has an older K1200GT and does his own work. I mentioned that my bike burns oil and that the dealer has told me that "these older bikes do that. It's normal to add a quart every 1,000 miles". The bike has 94K miles on it and I put in oil a little more frequently.

He asked what I was using and I mentioned that I was using 5W-40 synthetic oil. He recommended 10W-40. His thought was that the thicker oil might be better.

The manual recommends:
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I am thinking that the 10W-50 might be a better option since it's recommended in the manual.

Are any of you using a thicker oil? Is this a better option?
 

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Burning a quart every thousand miles is not normal.

At the worst, my '12 K12GT would go through maybe half a quart between 6,000 mile changes, all the way up to 138,000 miles.

My '09 K13GT never needed topping up, even if I extended the oil changes to 12,000 miles.

The 5W-40 is recommended due to issues with clutch judder and squealing.

The table you linked also shows 10W-50, so you could try that and see if it helps.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Burning a quart every thousand miles is not normal.

At the worst, my '12 K12GT would go through maybe half a quart between 6,000 mile changes, all the way up to 138,000 miles.

My '09 K13GT never needed topping up, even if I extended the oil changes to 12,000 miles.

The 5W-40 is recommended due to issues with clutch judder and squealing.

The table you linked also shows 10W-50, so you could try that and see if it helps.

Thanks for the comments. I am going to switch oil and see if that helps. The bike has a small list of other issues and I feel that this is the one thing that will get me onto something different.
 

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My K1600GT burns about 1qt every 6000 miles, especially if I'm doing more long distance road miles. I'm told that's normal for these engines. 1qt every 1000 miles is excessive for sure, I recommend you monitor this closely to see how the burn rate changes over time or with the 10W-50.
 

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1qt every 1,000 is high. The old british bikes of the 60s would do about 1 pint every 500 to 1,000 and that was considered bad. My 1300GT uses none (I put 100ml (about 1/5 of a pint) in once about 3,000 after the previous change just to top it up to the max but was never sure if I just hadn't quite filled it to the max at the change so not sure it had used any). My 1300S is quite new to me so bit early to say, but I've just done 1,500 miles going to the Isle and Man TT and back and riding hard on the roads there (no speed limit so full bore and bouncing off the rev-limiter quite a bit) and it seems to have used none.

Synthetic oils find their ways past rings and down valve guides better than non-synthetic but you shouldn't use the latter in our bikes. In my experience moving to a higher viscosity oil does little to reduce consumption - if an engine's burning oil it will burn it whatever. The 10W refers to the cold viscosity so isn't so relevant to oil burning - its when hot that engines really burn oil so its the 40 or 50 number that matters. The viscosity to temperature curve is a little flatter for 5W/40 than for the 10W/40 curve (i.e. 5W/40 thins out less than 10W/40 as it heats up, because its thinner to start with but still 40 at high temp, but not enough to make a real difference, so I don't think switching form 5W to 10W/40 will help. The 10W/50 IS thicker when hot, so maybe try the 10W/50 (suprised its allowed) but, unless there's a dramatic effect, I'd stick with 5W/40 for the other benefits that gives

Sounds like your engine's tired. That'd be unusual (and a shame) at 94k, so has it always had regular oil and filter changes with top quality oil and do you use OE air filters or K&N style ones (which let more fine dirt through - see Debunking the K&N Myth - Why OEM is Better which someone else recently posted in another thread)?
 

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Just realised you weren't saying your bike actually does 1qt every 1,000, just that the dealer said that older bikes do. Re your bike, it's obviously not as good as some, but if its less than, say, 1/2 pint every 1,000 it sounds like something that doesn't indicate an immediate problem (though it will get worse over time) and can be lived with. If, when you say "my bike burns a little oil", you mainly mean it gives a puff of blue smoke every now and again (especially at cold starts), that's usually down to the seals on the valve guides stopping working so well, so a little oil trickles down when the engine's stopped but still hot and then burns off when it next starts. It's annoying but usually doesn't account for a massive proportion of the oil consumption and isn't necessarily a sign of a clapped-out engine overall; which is better judged by the oil consumption figure (just modifying my suggestion that your engine might be tired).

The dealer isn't really right about "these older bikes do that": As I mentioned, MUCH older bikes did drink oil but then technology got better and they got good....but recently, in the quest for more power from more revs, a lot of modern bikes (especially Jap and Italian sports bikes) now have very short semi-slipper pistons (to save weight) which (combined with a relatively big bore) rock quite a lot around the gudgeon pin and this stops the oil control ring working properly; as a result, oil consumption on a lot of these newer bikes is back up to 500miles/pint (i.e. 1qt/1,000 miles!). The K1300 isn't in the older bike category here or the newer - its in the good bit (roughly from 1990 to 2010) where high oil consumption had pretty much been eliminated (though I have read that some K1200s used a lot of oil, but don't know how true that is).
 
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