How to Change the Oil in Honda Bikes

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

Designed as Honda bike premiere long-distance touring motorcycle, the Honda bike requires a steady supply of fresh oil. Replenishing this supply of oil and the oil filter is absolutely critical to maintain a smooth, reliable ride. The Honda bike sheer size may make the task seem fairly difficult, but this basic task can be accomplished with a minimal amount of work. Although some body components must be removed to access the oil filter, oil drain plug and oil filler neck, expect the entire job to take about an hour to complete.

Under The Hood:

 How to Change the Oil in a Goldwing GL1800

Select a smooth, level work area and park the motorcycle on its kick stand. Prepare the motorcycle for the oil change. Remove the front lower fairing from the motorcycle, which is secured in place by six plastic pop rivets and two bolts. Remove the pop rivets by twisting the center of the rivet counterclockwise with a Phillips screwdriver and pull the rivets out of the fairing. Remove the bolt from each side of the lower fairing using an Allen key. Pull the lower fairing away from the motorcycle and set it aside. Remove the right-side frame cover, pulling the mounting tabs out of the frame's rubber grommets. Set the frame cover aside.

Shift the motorcycle into neutral and start the motor, allowing it to idle for three minutes. This will warm the motor's oil supply, allowing it to drain completely in a short period of time. Stop the motor and allow it to cool for two minutes.

Remove the oil filler cap and dipstick from the right side of the motor. Locate the oil drain plug on the front of the motor, next to the oil filter. Using a 17 mm socket, remove the drain plug and allow the oil to drain into an oil pan. Remove and replace the O-ring from the drain plug. Screw the drain plug onto the motor and tighten it to 25 ft-lbs. with a torque wrench.

Remove the oil filter using a cap-type oil filter wrench. Allow any oil remaining in the oil pump to drain into an oil pan. Prepare the new oil filter, spreading a coat of fresh 10W40 motor oil around the filter's inner surface. Screw the oil filter onto the motor by hand until it is seated against the oil pump. Tighten the oil filter to 20 ft-lbs. with a torque wrench.

Insert a funnel into the oil filler neck on the right side of the motor. Pour up to 3.9 qts. of fresh 10W40 motor oil into the motor. Remove the funnel and wipe away any spilled oil with a clean shop towel.

Wipe the oil filler cap and dipstick clean with a shop towel and insert it into the filler neck. Withdraw the dipstick and check the oil level. Increase the oil level as needed, pouring small amounts of fresh oil into the filler neck. Check the oil level again. Screw the oil filler cap and dipstick onto the oil filler neck if the oil level is correct.

Reinstall the right side frame cover, pressing the mounting tabs into the frame's rubber grommets. Reinstall the lower fairing. Use an Allen key to insert and tighten the two lower bolts. Insert the pop rivets into their mounting points and twist the center of the rivet clockwise with a Phillips screwdriver to lock it into place.

Items you will need

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • 17 mm socket

  • Socket wrench

  • Oil pan

  • Oil drain plug O-ring

  • Oil filter wrench

  • Oil filter

  • Funnel

  • 4 qts. 10W40 motor oil

  • Shop towels

 How to Do an Oil Change on a Honda CRF450

Run your bike for a minute or two to warm up the oil so that it flows out easier. Make sure to turn off your bike before draining the oil.

Attach the 12mm socket and ratchet to the oil drain bolt, located at the bottom of the engine's left hand side. Turn the ratchet counter clockwise until the entire bolt comes out. Let the motor oil completely drain into the oil pan. Once finished reattach the bolt.

Remove the oil cap on the left hand side of the motor, and insert the funnel. Use the measuring cup to measure out 700cc's of motor oil. Pour the motor oil into the funnel. Once finished, remove the funnel, and replace the oil cap.

Dispose of your used motor oil per your local oil disposal regulations.

Items you will need

  • Ratchet

  • 12mm socket

  • Oil Pan

  • 700cc motor oil

  • Measuring cup

  • Funnel

 How to Change the Oil on a Honda 750 ACE

Start your motorcycle’s engine and let it idle for five minutes to warm the oil.

Locate the oil dipstick and drain plug. The oil tank is located on the bottom of the engine. The oil drain plug is on the left side of the bottom of the engine. Remove the dipstick, so that the oil will drain freely.

Place a drain pan under the drain plug and remove the drain plug. You will probably need to use a 17 mm wrench instead of a ratchet to remove the plug, because there is not enough space for the ratchet. Allow the oil to drain completely.

Switch the engine stop switch to “OFF” and then push the starter button for five seconds. This will drain any remaining oil from the engine. Do not push the starter button for more than five seconds.

Replace the drain plug and tighten it.

Locate the oil filter, which is on the left side behind the oil drain plug. After placing the drain pan under the oil filter, remove the oil filter and the let the oil drain from the filter. When the oil has completely drained, replace the oil filter.

Fill the crankcase with new Honda HP4 10W40 Synthetic Blend oil. Fill the crankcase 1 qt. at a time until the oil level is at the upper-level mark.

Start the motorcycle and let it run on idle for several minutes. This will circulate the oil and you can also make sure that there are no leaks. Add more oil or tighten the drain plug or oil filter if necessary.

Items you will need

  • Honda HP4 10W40 Synthetic Blend oil

  • 17 mm wrench

  • Funnel

  • Drain pan

  • Oil filter

  • Oil filter wrench

 How to Change the Oil on a Honda Rebel

Turn on the motor and let the engine run for about five minutes. If it is a nice day go out for a short ride. This will warm the engine and make the oil more fluid.

Place the bike on a level surface, such as the floor of a garage.

Locate the drain bolt that is under the side of the engine between the foot peg and kick stand on the left side of the bike.

Place the drain pan under the drain bolt.

Loosen the drain bolt using the 17mm socket with the socket wrench. If more clearance is needed you can use a wrench extension. Turn the bolt counter-clockwise to loosen it.

Continue to slowly turn the bolt counter-clockwise with your fingers. This will allow the oil to begin to drain out of the reservoir slowly into the drain pan.

Remove the oil cap on the reservoir to allow the oil to drain faster. Wait about 15 minutes for the oil to completely drain from the reservoir.

Replace the drain bolt and tighten it with the wrench once all of the oil has drained from the reservoir.

Place a funnel into reservoir where you removed the oil cap. Add the motor oil to the reservoir. The bike will take about 1.6 quarts of oil. Check the oil level by looking at the dip stick. Stop filling the reservoir when the oil reaches the "Full" line on the dip stick.

Remove the funnel and replace the oil cap.

Drain the old oil into a milk jug using the funnel.

Items you will need

  • Socket Wrench

  • Wrench extension

  • 17mm socket

  • Drain pan

  • Funnel

  • 2 quarts motor oil

  • Milk jug

 How to Change the Oil On a Honda VLX 600

Move your VLX600 into a well-ventilated area and park it on its side stand. Start the motorcycle and let it idle for two to three minutes, allowing the engine to warm up to its normal operating temperature. Shut the engine down. Wait for two minutes to allow the oil to settle in the engine crankcase.

Place an oil drain plan below the drain bolt on the bottom-left side of the engine crankcase, just below the rider's left foot peg. Unscrew the oil filler cap from the right side of the engine, just behind the large, round clutch cover. Wipe the attached dipstick clean with a rag and set the cap aside.

Unscrew the drain bolt from the crankcase, using a 17 mm socket and a ratchet, and let the engine oil drain. Remove the crush washer from the drain bolt and discard it. Wipe the drain bolt threads clean and inspect it for damaged threads. Replace the drain bolt if the threads are damaged in any way.

Wipe the crankcase drain hole clean once the flow of oil has reduced to a drip. Slip a new crush washer onto the drain bolt, and screw the drain bolt into place by hand until it is seated against the crankcase. Tighten the drain bolt to 22 foot-pounds, using a torque wrench.

Move the drain pan below the oil filter at the rear of the engine. Loosen the oil filter, using a 68 mm oil filter wrench, and then let the oil remaining in the filter to drain. Unscrew the oil filter by hand and wipe the engine's mating surface clean. Place the old filter into your drain pan.

Spread a light coat of Honda GN4 10W-40 engine oil around the new oil filter's sealing O-ring and threads, and then screw the filter into place until it is hand-tight. Do not tighten the filter to more than 7 foot-pounds of torque.

Place a clean funnel into the oil fill hole, and then pour 2 quarts of oil into the engine. Screw the oil filler cap into place, and then start the engine and let it idle for one minute. Check the oil filter and drain plug for leaks; if a leak appears, tighten the drain plug or filter an additional eighth of a turn. Stop the engine and let the oil settle.

Lift the motorcycle off of its side stand and place a jack under the engine to hold it in an upright position, or have an assistant hold the motorcycle steady. Check the engine oil level using the dipstick, and then add oil as needed to raise the oil level until it is centered between the upper and lower marks on the dipstick. Screw the dipstick into place and lower the motorcycle onto the side stand.

Items you will need

  • Drain pan

  • 17 mm socket

  • Ratchet

  • Rags

  • Drain plug (Honda part number 92800-14000)

  • Crush washer (Honda part number 94109-14000)

  • Torque wrench

  • 68 mm cap wrench (Honda part number 07HAA-PJ70100)

  • Oil filter (Honda part number 15410-MFJ-D01)

  • Funnel

  • 2.38 quarts of Honda GN410W-40 engine oil (Honda part number 08C35-A141M01)

  • Jack

 How to Change the Oil on a Honda Reflex Scooter

Move the Reflex to a level, well-ventilated work area and lift it onto its center stand. Start the Reflex's engine. Let it idle in place for 3 minutes, then stop the engine and let it cool for 10 minutes.

Unscrew the oil filler cap from the right engine cover, which is located near the rear swingarm below the right passenger foot peg, by hand.

Unscrew the oil screen cap, located directly below the oil cap, using a socket wrench and a 17 mm socket. Drain the engine oil into a drain pan for a minimum of 5 minutes.

Pull the oil strainer screen out of the oil screen port by hand. Spray the inner face of the strainer screen, facing the engine, with a parts cleaning spray to remove sediment or particles trapped in the strainer. Push the strainer screen into the engine.

Replace the oil screen cap O-ring with a new O-ring. Screw the oil screen cap into the engine by hand. Tighten the cap to 14 foot-pounds, using a torque wrench and a 17 mm socket.

Fill the engine with 1 quart of 10W-30 API SG motorcycle-grade engine oil, using a funnel. Screw the oil cap into place by hand.

Start the Reflex's engine. Let it idle for 3 minutes, then stop the engine. Check the oil level, using the dipstick built into the oil cap. Add 2 oz. of 10W-30 API SG motorcycle-grade engine oil into the engine, if the oil level is below the dipstick's lower level mark. Do not add oil into the engine, if the oil level is at or near the center of the dipstick's upper and lower marks. Screw the oil cap into place by hand.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench

  • 17 mm socket

  • Drain pan

  • Oil screen cap O-ring

  • Parts cleaning spray

  • 1 quart, 10W-30 API SG motorcycle-grade engine oil

 How to Change the Oil on the XR650L

Park your XR650L on its kickstand, then start the motor. Let the motorcycle idle in place for three minutes, then stop the motor and let it cool for at least 10 minutes.

Unscrew the oil filler cap, with its attached dip stick, from the top of the frame tube between the gas tank and the handlebars. Clean the filler cap's dip stick with a shop towel.

Unscrew the oil tank's drain bolt from the frame's front down tube, which extends down from the handlebars to the front of the motor, using a 14-mm socket and a socket wrench. Drain the oil tank's contents into an oil pan. Clean the drain bolt with a shop towel, then screw it into place with the 14-mm socket. Tighten the bolt to 29 foot-pounds with a torque wrench.

Move the oil pan below the left side of the motor. Unscrew the drain bolt from the motor's crankcase, located behind the shifter pedal, using the 14-mm socket and a socket wrench. Drain the crankcase oil into the oil pan. Clean the drain bolt with a shop towel, then screw it into place with the 14-mm socket. Tighten the bolt to 18 foot-pounds with a torque wrench.

Unscrew the oil filter cover's bolts, located on the motor's right crankcase, using a 10-mm socket and a socket wrench. Pull the cover off the oil filter and take note of the position of the alignment notch cut into the side of the cover and the crankcase. Pull the old oil filter out of the motor, by hand, and discard it. Place a new oil filter into the motor.

Align the oil filter cover's alignment notch with the crankcase's notch. Screw the cover's bolts into place with the 10-mm socket and socket wrench. Tighten the oil filter cover bolts to 9 foot-pounds with the torque wrench.

Place a funnel into the oil tank's filler neck, between the gas tank and the handlebars. Pout one quart of SAE 10W40 motor oil into the oil tank, then remove the funnel and screw the filler cap into place. Start the motor and let it run for 1 to 2 minutes, then stop the motor.

Remove the filler cap and wipe its dip stick clean with a shop towel. Pour a half quart of SAE 10W40 motor oil into the oil tank, then check the tank's oil level with the dip stick. Add small amounts of oil into the oil tank until it has been filled to the upper mark imprinted on the dip stick. Screw the dip stick and filler cap into place.

Items you will need

  • Shop towels

  • 14-mm socket

  • Socket wrench

  • Oil pan

  • Torque wrench

  • 10-mm socket

  • Oil filter

  • Funnel

  • SAE 10W40 motor oil, 2 quarts

 How to Change the Oil in the Honda Elite Scooter

CH80 Elite

Select a smooth, level work area and park the scooter on its center stand. Start the motor and allow it to warm up for five to 10 minutes. This will improve the oil flow and will help speed up the draining process. Stop the motor and turn the ignition switch to the "Off" position.

Locate the oil drain plug bolt under the left side of the scooter near the swing arm and just below the belt cover. Place a catch basin or container directly under the drain plug, and remove the drain plug bolt using an 8 mm (5/16 inch) Allen key. Allow the oil to drain until the flow of oil has reduced to a trickle. Replace the drain plug bolt, tightening it until the bolt is seated snugly against the motor.

Unscrew the oil filler cap, located on the right side of the motor, and insert a funnel into the filler neck. Add fresh engine oil slowly by pouring it into the funnel. Stop filling once you have added 3/4 qt. of oil to the engine. Remove the funnel and replace the filler cap.

Start the motor and allow the fresh oil to warm up. Warm oil will provide an accurate reading. Stop the motor and remove the oil filler cap. Attached to the bottom of the cap is a dipstick. Wipe any any oil off the dipstick, then completely insert the dipstick into the filler neck. Remove the dipstick again to view the oil level marked on the stick. Proper oil levels will leave an oil mark just above the center of the dipstick. Add oil as needed.

CH125-CH250 Elite

Park the scooter on a smooth, level surface and lift it onto its center stand. Allow the oil to warm up by starting the motor and letting it run for five to 10 minutes. Stop the motor and turn the ignition switch to the "Off" position.

Locate the drain plug bolt under the motor, and place a catch basin or container directly under it. Remove the drain plug bolt, using an 8 mm (5/16 inch) Allen key, and allow the oil to drain completely. Replace the drain plug bolt.

Locate the oil filler cap on the right side of the scooter, and place your catch basin under it. Using the appropriate-size hex socket (17 mm for the CH250 or 23 mm for the CH125/150), remove the large hex bolt to the right of the filler cap. Pull out the oil screen.

Clean the oil screen with brake cleaner spray. Allow it to dry completely before reinstalling and replacing the large oil screen bolt.

Unscrew the oil filler cap, and insert a funnel into the filler neck. Add fresh engine oil slowly by pouring it into the funnel. Stop filling once you have added 3/4 qt. of oil to the engine. Remove the funnel and replace the filler cap.

Start the motor and allow the fresh oil to warm up. Stop the motor and remove the oil filler cap. Wipe any any oil off the dipstick, then completely reinsert the dipstick into the filler neck. Remove the dipstick again to view the oil level marked on the stick. Add oil as needed.

Items you will need

  • Catch basin or container

  • 8 mm Allen key (5/16 inch)

  • Funnel

  • 1 qt. engine oil, 10W-40

  • Rags or towels

  • Socket wrench

  • 17 mm hex-head socket (CH250 Elite)

  • 23 mm hex-head socket (CH125 & CH150 Elite)

  • Brake cleaner spray

 How to Change Oil in a 1998 Honda Shadow 750

Run the engine for a few minutes to warm the oil slightly. Turn the engine off. This allows the oil to drain easier, and it helps circulate any sediment that may have settled to the bottom of the oil pan.

Keep your Honda Shadow upright on the side stand. Remove the oil fill cap to allow for better oil drainage. Locate the drain plug, which is on the left side of the oil pan behind the left frame rail. Position the oil drain pan below this drain plug.

Loosen and remove the oil pan bolt with a wrench. Allow all the oil to drain into the oil pan.

Return the oil pan bolt to its original position. Tighten the bolt until snug, and turn a quarter turn more to make sure it is tight. Consider replacing the washer gasket on your oil pan bolt at this time too.

Move the oil pan to the rear of the engine where the oil filter is located. Firmly grip, loosen and remove the oil filter. Turn it upside down on the oil drain pan so the contents drain out.

Fill the new oil filter with new oil. Dip your finger into the oil, and place a light coating of oil on the oil filter gasket that runs around the top of the oil filter. This provides a seal when you replace and tighten the filter.

Install the new filter by reaching from the bottom right side of the bike. Turn it until snug, and turn it one quarter turn more to make sure it is tight.

Fill the bike with oil through the oil fill hole. It should take about 2 1/2 quarts. Check the dipstick to make sure it is at an appropriate level.

Replace the oil fill cap. Turn the engine on, and run it for a few minutes. Turn the engine off and check the oil level again. Add oil if needed.

Items you will need

  • motor oil (SAE 5W 30 or 10W 30), 3 quarts

  • Oil filter (K&N Oil Filter KN-303 or KN-303C)

  • Wrench

  • Oil drain pan

  • Washer gasket for oil pan bolt

  • Kitty litter, if needed for spills

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.