How to Change Honda VTX Oilby Chris Gilliland
As one of the most basic maintenance tasks demanded by a motorcycle, changing your motorcycle's oil is something motorcycle riders should be able to do themselves. Even though the various hoses and wires that surround a Honda VTX-series motorcycle may make the job appear complicated, changing the motor's oil supply and its filter is simple enough to complete in less than half an hour.
Look under the motor to find both oil drain plugs; one is positioned beneath the front cylinder, while the second is positioned below the rear cylinder and slightly off to the left.
Start the motor and let it idle in place for three minutes to warm the oil. Stop the motor. Lift the motorcycle into an upright position. Place a block of wood under the kickstand, then lean the motorcycle over so that the kickstand rests on the block of wood.
Remove the drain plug from under the front of the motor using a 17-mm socket and a socket wrench. Catch the motor's oil in an oil pan. Clean the drain plug with a shop towel, and reinsert the plug into the motor using a torque wrench to tighten it to 29 foot pounds.
Remove the drain plug from under the rear of the motor using a 17-mm socket and a socket wrench. Catch the motor's oil in an oil pan. Clean the drain plug with a shop towel, and reinsert it into the motor using a torque wrench to tighten it to 29 foot pounds.
[Use an oil filter wrench](https://itstillruns.com/use-oil-filter-wrench-7449698.html) to remove the oil filter from the bottom of the motor.
Coat the new oil filter's sealing O-ring with 10W40 API SF motor oil. Screw the oil filter into place by hand until it is fitted snugly against the motor. Use a torque wrench to tighten the oil filter to 20 foot pounds.
Remove the oil filler cap from the left side of the motor. Place a funnel into the motor's oil filler neck. Pour up to 3.9 quarts of 10W40 API SF motor oil into the motor. Screw the filler cap back on to the motor.
Remove the block of wood from under the kickstand and start the motor. Check for oil leaks at the drain plugs and the oil filter, tightening them as needed to stop the leak. Stop the motor and wipe away any spilled oil with a shop towel.
- "The Professional Motorcycle Repair Program"; Professional Career Development Institute; 1995
- "Honda VTX1800C Service Manual 2002-2003": Honda Motor Co.; 2003
- "Honda VTX1300S Service Manual 2002-2003": Honda Motor Co.; 2003
- This procedure is the same for 1300cc and 1800cc VTX models.
Things You'll Need
- Block of wood
- 17-mm socket
- Socket wrench
- Oil pan
- Shop towels
- Torque wrench
- Oil filter wrench
- 4 quarts 10W40 API SF motor oil
- Be sure to take the time to find both drain plugs on the bottom of the motor before you begin the process of changing your oil in order to keep from burning yourself unnecessarily.
An avid motorcyclist, Chris Gilliland has immersed himself into the two-wheeled world while balancing work life and raising three daughters. When he is not managing the parts department of a local, multi-line motorcycle dealership, Gilliland can often be found riding, writing or working on his motorcycle blog, Wingman's Garage.