How to Change Oil in an FLHXby Chris Gilliland
Harley-Davidson's FLHX Street Glide is an impressive touring motorcycle. With an appearance that garners attention on the boulevard and an appetite for long-distance rides, the Street Glide presents a solid base for urban motorcyclists that favor the occasional road trip. However, keeping a Street Glide roadworthy requires regular maintenance in the form of oil and fluid changes. Draining and replenishing the motor oil, primary fluid and transmission oil is straightforward affair, requiring only a few hand tools and a motorcycle stand.
Start the motorcycle and let it warm up for five minutes. This will bring the oil to its operating temperature, allowing it to flow easier and drain completely. Stop the motor after five minutes. Place the motorcycle on a stand to support it in an upright position.
Place an oil pan under the drain plug on the left side of the motor. Remove the drain plug using a 5/8" socket and allow the motor oil to drain completely. Wipe the tip of the drain plug with a shop towel to remove any buildup or debris. Remove the o-ring from the drain plug and replace it with a new o-ring. Insert and tighten the drain plug with a 5/8" socket once the oil has finished draining.
Move the oil pan directly under the oil filter on the front of the motor. Use a filter wrench to unscrew the oil filter from the motor. Discard the oil filter. Fill the new oil filter with fresh motor oil and spread a thin coat of oil around the filter's mating surface. Screw the oil filter into place by hand until it is seated against the motor. Tighten the oil filter an additional quarter of a turn to secure it.
Remove the filler cap from the motorcycle's oil tank. Use a funnel to pour in fresh motor oil into the oil tank, adding up to 3 quarts of oil. Remove the funnel and wipe away any spilled oil before replacing the filler cap.
Move the oil pan directly beneath the primary housing on the left side of the motor. Using a Torx-27 driver, remove the drain plug from the primary housing, located directly below the round derby cover. Allow the primary fluid to drain. Wipe the tip of the drain plug with a shop towel and replace the plug's o-ring. Reinsert and tighten the drain plug with a Torx-27 driver.
Remove the derby cover from the primary housing, using a Torx-27 driver to unscrew the six bolts that secure the derby cover. Set the derby cover aside. Pour up to 1 quart of fresh primary fluid into the primary housing. Ideally, the primary fluid should be level with the bottom of the clutch diaphragm spring within the primary housing. Wipe away any spilled fluid with a shop towel and reinstall the derby cover onto the primary housing.
Move the oil pan directly beneath the transmission unit. Remove the transmission drain plug with a 5/8" socket and allow the transmission oil to drain. Wipe the tip of the drain plug with a shop towel and replace its o-ring. Reinsert the drain plug into the transmission and tighten it with a 5/8" socket.
Remove the filler cap from the transmission unit. Use a funnel to pour up to 1 quart of fresh transmission oil into the transmission unit. Remove the funnel and wipe away any spilled oil with a shop towel before replacing the filler cap.
- "The Professional Motorcycle Repair Program"; Professional Career Development Institute; 1995
- Dispose of your used oils responsibly. Have it recycled at your local Harley-Davidson dealer or auto parts store.
Things You'll Need
- Motorcycle stand
- Socket wrench and sockets
- Oil pan
- Shop towels
- Drain plug o-rings
- Filter wrench
- Motor oil, 3 Quarts
- Torx drivers
- Primary fluid, 1 Quart
- Transmission oil, 1 Quart
- Don't over-tighten the drain plugs. The threads on the motor, primary and transmission can be damaged easily if the drain plug is over-tightened.
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.