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Should You Buy a Harley Davidson Oil Change Kit?

The Harley Davidson Switchback 5

There are many reasons why people ride Harley Davidson. Some of it comes down to brand preference. For others it’s all about technicality. There are some riders that get on a Harley everyday because they just like how it feels. No matter the reason why you might be a Harley Davidson fan, we’re guessing that you’re in it for life. Motorcycling is a lifestyle, after all, and that lifestyle comes with maintenance and care. You need to care for your bike, so it can take care of you on the road—this you should already know. So many bikers take the time to learn some technical aspects, including changing their bikes’ oil. Is this really something you ought to take on? This article will let you know whether you should finally buy that Harley Davidson oil change kit or not.

When to change the oil

Your manual might recommend that you change your oil every 10,000 miles or so. But then many dealers may tell you that you need to change your oil every 2,500 miles. That’s quite a gap in between. Harley has even recommended that you change the oil after the first 1,000 miles. Depending on the type of Harley you ride, the safest route is to change your oil every 5,000 miles, but you can do it sooner if your bike starts to call for it. It wouldn’t hurt to learn how to check your oil gauge when needed, especially if you’re on the open road a lot. Some bikers will even change every 3,000 miles or every 6 months. Again, the timing will depend on the type of Harley you have and how much you actually ride.

Not changing your oil

The dangers of not changing your oil when needed are obvious here. Although it’s not exactly a life and death situation for you, it can definitely affect the life and longevity of your bike. Your motorcycle manual might not explicitly lay it out, but it’s common practice for bikers to change oil every year regardless of mileage. Although oil doesn’t exactly go bad, it does get dirty. The efficiency of your motorcycle’s engine is what’s at stake.

Pro or DIY

At this point, the question remains as to whether you should buy a Harley Davidson oil change kit or not. There are many positives to letting a professional do the job, but it’s not always the best option for everyone—especially for those without a trusted pro to go to. There’s also a great benefit to learning how to change your bike’s oil all on your own. For one, you’ll save money. Two, you can opt to do it anytime you need to without having to worry about taking your bike anywhere else to get it done. The only risk with changing your Harley’s oil by yourself is when you don’t know what you’re doing. Fortunately, changing your Harley’s oil is pretty easy and rewarding, especially if you have an oil change kit to use.

Materials and process

Before you can begin the process of changing the oil on your Harley Davidson, you’ll have to gather a few materials. In addition to getting the appropriate oil change kit, you’ll need some tools to protect your space and to get the job done. You’ll need to have a catch pan and some rags to protect your workspace. You’ll also need a replacement oil filter and possibly an oil filter wrench. Make sure you have a torque wrench handy and possibly a motorcycle lift as well. If you don’t have a lift, a large enough wooden block might be suitable enough. Some might even prefer not to use a lift at all; you’d have to try it first to see what works for you.

The entire process will not take you any more than 20 minutes. It might take a little longer during your first try, but changing your Harley’s oil is something that you can do quickly before you take your bike out for a ride. While you might have slight changes depending on the kind of bike you have, the general steps of changing your motorcycle’s oil will remain the same—lift up your bike, warm it up, open the oil fill cap, remove the drain plug and drain the oil, remove the old filter, install a new oil filter, replace drain plug, and then finally add new oil. These are the steps in their simplest form, of course. You’ll need to get more information for more details.

Should you buy a Harley Davidson oil change kit?

The answer is a resounding yes. Whether you have a ton of experience changing oil or have absolutely no experience whatsoever, being able to change your bike’s oil is something all riders should be able to do. It also helps that the process is fairly simple. It doesn’t take a ton of time, and it also doesn’t take much to master. There are many reasons why you should opt to get a Harley Davidson oil change kit, and you have to remember that there are many different kits made specifically for certain H-D bikes. One of the biggest reasons why you should buy an oil change kit to do the job yourself is the cost. Using a kit might cost you an average of about $50, and taking your bike to get an oil change done professionally might cost you an average of $100—depending on your mechanic and/or dealer. While that cost difference may not sound like much, the disparity becomes more obvious after you’ve done enough oil changes. Also, being able to service your own bike is a reason in itself. It’s quite a rewarding experience to be able to care for your bike practically, and it starts really with something as simple as being able to change your own oil. It’s an endeavor worth exploring, so go buy a Harley Davidson oil change kit and get started.

Benjamin Smith

Written by Benjamin Smith

Benjamin Smith is one of the managing editors of Moneyinc. Ben's been focusing on the auto and motorcycle sector since 2005. He's written over 1000 articles in the space and continues to learn about it each day. His favorite car is "any Bugatti" and he's a die hard Harley Davidson fan.

Read more posts by Benjamin Smith

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