Oil color after only 4000 miles

Discussion in 'Oil' started by StreetGlide13, Dec 10, 2013.

  1. StreetGlide13

    StreetGlide13 Member

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    Hey all,

    I just did all fluids on my bike and had them all done (supposedly) at 1000 miles after break in. The oil in my primary was dark and metal on the magnet. Not worried about metal as that's why the magnet is there and it was an acceptable amount. The engine and trans weren't as dark but dark just the same. I've been a professional auto tech since I was 18 and cars don't darken oils this much in so few miles.
    Am I mixing apples and oranges or should my oils be a lot cleaner for 4000 miles?
     
  2. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

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    On both my bikes the oil in the primary and the engine oil are dark after a couple of thousand miles. The trans fluid always looks new. I change all the fluids at 3500 and I've been told that is just the nature of the air cooled engine. I run straight dino oil in the motor and Harley primary fluid. I run Amsoil in the trans. The Amsoil is sold and recommended by the service dept.
     
  3. StreetGlide13

    StreetGlide13 Member

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    Thanks for the quick reply! That makes me feel better.
     
  4. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

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    No problem.
     
  5. dbmg

    dbmg Experienced Member

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    You are asking the oil to do alot in these v-twin engines that are air cooled..... Oil discoloration is normal..
     
  6. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

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    There is also about 1/2 quart of oil in the crank area that does not drain, leading to darkening of the new oil. Don't worry about the color.
     
  7. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

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    Thanks Breeze. I did forget about that!
     
  8. BUBBIE

    BUBBIE Well-Known Member

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    My oils in my 09 king show darkened colors at about start (light clear) to finish (brownish to gray).. 4,000 miles here also.

    I use all Redline full synthetic products and HD oil filters.

    I have notice on many bikes When new or fresh build, the color of the oil changes earlier until fully broken in. The heat on a fresh TIGHT motor will darken oil early on.

    I do notice that on my 103" new recent build that it did darken early and Now fully broken in (AND cooler out) it stays Lighter for a longer time.

    Heat has a lot to do with early darkening.

    I do agree with the other post above on the reason and not to worry.

    Do you use a oil cooler??? IF not, you might think to install one. They DO make a difference in longevity of the oil AND the motor.

    HEAT is a BIG factor for our air cooled motors.

    signed....BUBBIE
     
  9. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

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    On a not quite broke in engine I would expect to see a bit darker oil as the wear parts are still seating, add in the fact that modern oils can suspend the dirt and wear better than earlier oils, a cooler will be a big plus for any air cooled motor adding a bit more oil to the system to aid in cooling and lubricating JMO
     
  10. StreetGlide13

    StreetGlide13 Member

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    I currently don't have an oil cooler but since I'm running the SE120R I plan on putting one on. I did however install the parade use fan and have been happy with it so far.