How Often To Change Oil Filter On Motorcycles?- (Mechanic Thoughts)

Compare Motorcycle Insurance!
Motorcycle Insurance - Compare and Save up to 40%
It's fast and easy to compare motorcycle insurance quotes! Get My Quotes! Motorcycle Image

The engine oil gets contaminated by metal chips (due to the wear of moving components) and dust. An oil filter is installed in the engine to keep the oil clean. But, over time, the oil filter clogs and should be replaced.

So, how often do you change the oil filter on motorcycles? An oil filter should be changed whenever you’re changing the engine oil. However, the oil filter should be replaced after riding your motorcycle for 5,000 to 6,000 miles. Otherwise, it doesn’t clean the engine oil, which increases the wear of engine components and affects the bike’s performance.

Motorcycle Oil Filter

What Is The Purpose Of An Oil Filter?

The purpose of an oil filter on any vehicle is to keep the engine oil clean. The engine oil lubricates the moving parts of a vehicle and washes the metal particles due to wear.

The contaminated engine oil is not good for your engine because it increases the wear rate and reduces lifespan.

So, to keep the engine oil clean, an oil filter is installed on every vehicle. The oil filter catches the metal particles and supplies clean engine oil for lubrication.

How Many Miles Is An Oil Filter Good For?

An oil filter typically lasts 10,000 miles, but its cleaning efficiency decreases after 6000 miles. However, if your vehicle is new and going for the first service, the oil and oil filter should be changed after 300 to 500 miles because brand-new components have a high wear rate.

Motorcycle manufacturers recommend changing the oil filter whenever you change the engine oil because it keeps the oil from getting contaminated. Some manufacturers recommend changing the oil filter earlier than 6000 miles.

Here’s a table for oil filter change intervals of various motorcycle manufacturers-

ManufacturerOil Filter Change Interval
Harley Davidson4000 to 5000 miles
Honda5000 to 6000 miles
Kawasaki5000 to 6000 miles
Yamaha6000 to 7000 miles
BMW5000 to 6000 miles
Suzuki4500 to 5000 miles
Triumph5000 to 6000 miles
Indian5000 to 6000 miles
Royal Enfield4500 to 5500 miles

Also Read: How Much Does Harley-Davidson Oil Change Cost?

How To Change Oil Filter On a Motorcycle?

You should change your oil filter whenever you’re changing the engine oil. Get ready the following equipment for the oil filter change on a motorcycle-

  • Strap wrench or cap wrench
  • Spanner set
  • Oil drain pan
  • New oil filter
  • Engine oil (recommended by your manufacturer)
  • Microfiber towel
  • Conical funnel

If the following equipment is ready, follow these steps to change the oil filter on a motorcycle-

Step 1- Start your motorcycle

If your motorcycle sits for more than 2 hours, then engine oil and dirt have been settled at the bottom. So, starting your motorcycle for 3 to 5 minutes before changing the engine oil or filter is better.

Starting the motorcycle will circulate the engine oil inside and mix all the settled dirt from when you drain the engine oil.

Step 2- Unscrew the drain plug

Put your motorcycle on the center stand and place the oil drain pan below the drain plug. With the help of the correct ring spanner, unscrew the drain plug and remove it with your hand. This will drain all the engine oil into the pan.

Step 3- Open the oil filter

All motorcycles have oil filters installed at the bottom of the engine. Loosen the oil filter cap with the help of a strap wrench or cap wrench. Remove the oil filter and clean the messed-up oil on your motorcycle’s engine.

Step 4- Clean the drain plug

If oil is still coming out from the drain hole, please tilt your motorcycle so that all dirty oil is drained from the engine. Clean the drain hole, drain plug, and oil filter casing with a microfiber cloth.

Step 4- Insert new oil filter

Apply some engine oil on the rubber seal of the new oil filter and insert it into the air filter casing. Now, tighten your new oil filter with the strap or cap wrench.

Step 5- Tighten the drain plug

Clean the drain plug, insert it into the hole, and tighten it with the spanner. Don’t forget to replace the sealing washer every time. However, if you don’t have a new sealing washer, flip it.

Step 6- Fill the engine oil

With the help of a conical funnel, fill the new engine oil into your motorcycle’s engine. Wipe the excess oil with the microfiber cloth and start the engine. Inspect for any oil leakage, and make sure your motorcycle is ready to run.

Enjoy your ride.

Related: How Often Should Motorcycle Engine Oil Be Changed?

Do All Oil Filter Last For 10,000 Miles?

A motorcycle engine oil filter is designed to last 10,000 miles, but its pores are clogged, and performance worsens after 6,000 miles. It’s because the motorcycle odometer is coupled to the front wheel, and it reads when your motorcycle is running.

But, in reality, your engine still runs when you’re standing at the traffic lite or idling. So, it’s better to change the engine oil and filter after riding your motorcycle for 5000 to 6000 miles.

Is It Okay To Change The Oil But Not The Filter?

If you’re going for your vehicle’s first service, it’s mandatory to change the oil filter because brand-new components have sharp edges that wear faster and plug the oil filter.

However, you can skip the oil filter change from the second service onward. But don’t forget to change the oil filter at 6000 miles or every six months.

Can I Use The Same Oil Filter Twice?

If your oil filter looks in good condition, you can clean and use the same oil filter twice after cleaning it. However, changing your oil filter whenever changing the engine oil is recommended because a dirty oil filter will contaminate the oil and increase the wear rate.

What Happens If You Change The Oil But Not The Filter?

Vehicle manufacturers also recommend changing the oil filter when changing the engine oil. It’s because the dirty oil filter will contaminate the oil and increase the wear rate of engine components. If you use the same oil filter twice, ensure it is unclogged and thoroughly cleaned.


I always change the oil filter wherever I change the engine oil. It’s because a dirty oil filter will contaminate the oil and reduce its lifespan of oil. Moreover, you should change the oil filter after 6000 miles or every six months. Otherwise, the rotating components will wear faster, and your motorcycle performance will drop.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *