Check The Engine Oil On A Harley Davidson

Routine oil checks are a great form of preventative maintenance.

Maintaining a proper oil level is an important part of owning a Harley Davidson motorcycle. Keeping a high oil level will keep the bike’s oil consumption rate lower. Before checking your Harley, it is important to keep prior rides in mind. High speed cycling will burn more oil than a cruise around town or to the corner store. Also, the current tune and shape of the motor plays a role, as well.


1. Start the Harley and let the motor run until it reaches its usual operational temperature. Once this temperature has been reached, shut off the engine and allow the oil to settle. You do not want to wait too long, however, and let the engine temperature drop.

2. Stand the bike up as straight up as possible so that the oil inside the tank is level. You may need a personal helper to hold the Harley for you because using the kick stand will cause the bike to lean at a slant.

3. Wipe down the oil tank and the oil tank’s cap with a clean shop rag. Remove the cap and dipstick from the tank and wipe the dipstick clean.

4. Reinsert the dipstick into the tank and ensure that it goes all the way down.

5. Withdraw the dipstick and look at it. The stick will have two markings. If the oil level is very near or below the lower mark, you will need to add a quart of oil. If the level is somewhere between the lines, and you may wish to merely top the tank off–be very careful not to overfill it.

6. Wipe the dipstick clean again, reinsert it into the Harley and screw the cap back on the tank.