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How to Change the Oil on a Yamaha V-Star 1100

by Don Bowman; Updated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • Block of 2-by-4-inch wood to be placed under the kickstand

  • Ratchet

  • Set of sockets

  • Torx bit drivers

  • Oil filter

  • 4 quarts of oil

  • Drain pan

Changing the oil and filter on a Yamaha V-Star 1100 is a bit time-consuming, but simple enough for anyone to accomplish with a minimum of tools. The oil filter is a paper canister-type, located on the low right side of the engine, directly behind the front exhaust pipe. The front pipe must be removed to access the oil filter. The oil recommended is a 20W40 synthetic type; however, it is difficult to find, therefore a 20W50 oil is a good substitute. Regular oil can also be used, but in either case, make sure the oil does not contain a friction modifier, as many automotive oils do -- a friction modifier will cause the wet clutch on the Yamaha to slip.

Place the block of wood under the kickstand to sit the bike upright. Loosen the 12 mm nuts on the front exhaust flange one turn with a socket -- when the engine is warmed up and the exhaust studs have expanded, the nuts will still come off without running the risk of ruining the threads.

Start the engine and let it run for a short period to warm up, then shut it off. Place the drain pan under the engine, close to the front, under the oil filter. Remove the oil drain plug, which is recessed slightly, using a socket, to allow the oil to drain. When the oil has drained sufficiently, install the drain plug and tighten it snugly.

Remove the two bolts securing the mufflers to the mounting bracket, using a socket. Remove the two exhaust nuts. Pull the pipe out of the flange and push it rearward to dislodge the muffler -- this will give access to the filter.

Remove the lower front chrome cover, using a Torx bit. Remove the three bolts in the oil filter-housing cap using a Torx bit. Twist the cap slightly and pull it off. Inspect the O-ring on the cap and replace it if it is ripped. Stick a finger in the center of the oil filter and pull the O-ring out of the housing.

Insert a new filter and replace the cap. Tighten the Torx bolts to 9 foot-pounds of torque. Install the chrome cover over the oil filter housing and tighten the Torx bolts snugly. Unscrew the oil filler cap and pour 3 quarts of oil in the engine. Watch the sight glass under the filler cap -- the engine takes 3.3 quarts. Pour oil in the engine in small increments, until the level is correct in the sight glass. Replace the oil filler cap.

Install the exhaust pipe by sliding it on the rear bracket and placing the front header pipe into the exhaust flange. Install the two nuts loosely in the front exhaust flange. Install the two muffler-to-support bracket bolts and tighten them firmly.

Tighten the front header flange nuts, but do not over-tighten them ,or you may break the studs when the engine warms up. Make sure they are snug only. Wipe all the fingerprints off the pipe.

About the Author

Don Bowman has been writing for various websites and several online magazines since 2008. He has owned an auto service facility since 1982 and has over 45 years of technical experience as a master ASE tech. Bowman has a business degree from Pennsylvania State University and was an officer in the U.S. Army (aircraft maintenance officer, pilot, six Air Medal awards, two tours Vietnam).

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