How to check brake fluid level and engine oil? - Honda CBR500R Forum : CB500F and CB500X Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 03:17 AM Thread Starter
tim
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How to check brake fluid level and engine oil?

Hello,

I was checking my bike over today and noticed the front brake reservoir is looking pretty low. However I am unsure how to accuractely check the fluid. Should the hand bars be straight or should the front reservoir be horzinontal.

Also, when topping up brake fluid do you use dot 4 or performance dot 4?

When topping up engine oil, what do most people commonly use? I popped to my local shop and they had nothing that really matched what was stated in the handbook.

regards
tim

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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 07:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tim View Post
Hello,

I was checking my bike over today and noticed the front brake reservoir is looking pretty low. However I am unsure how to accuractely check the fluid. Should the hand bars be straight or should the front reservoir be horzinontal.

Also, when topping up brake fluid do you use dot 4 or performance dot 4?
Yup: Bike level (like you're sitting on it) and the handle bars straight ahead. Just use DOT 4 from a new container.

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When topping up engine oil, what do most people commonly use? I popped to my local shop and they had nothing that really matched what was stated in the handbook.
Which "local shop" did you go to? Most car parts places won't carry the oil needed for motorcycles. Try a motorcycle dealership next time.

Curious: Are you sure the engine oil needed topping up? Was the bike upright (again, as if you're sitting on it) and on level ground when you checked the sight-glass?
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 11:05 AM
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Actually, you may wish to turn the handlebars in the direction that has the front brake master cylinder the most vertical (i.e., the top which you are going to remove is the most horizontal).

Secondly, brake fluid will eat your paint, so try not to spill any and wipe up immediately, if you haven't put a plastic bag or such over the bikes paint to protect it from the brake fluid.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-01-2015, 12:10 PM
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When checking the engine oil, the CB500 should be left sit for about 5 minutes so you get an accurate reading between the two lines. If the engine has been run, the oil has be pumped out of the sump and the reading will appear low.

If you do not have a center stand, a piece of 2x4 lumber under the side stand will level the bike on a level surface. Just be careful if is a windy day or you bump the bike, as a motorcycle is not as stable when levelled on its side stand.

Honda shops carry the appropriate oil, oil filter and drain plug washer. They also have a $5 tool to remove the hot oil filter situated between two hot exhaust pipes.

Use the following link to find the long thread that talks about oil changes. It provides a lot of good advice on how to properly change the oil on a CB500.

https://www.cbr500riders.com/forum/ho...-cb500f-x.html

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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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yeah so i popped along to the honda dealership where i purchased my bike and they said:

To check the front brake fluid level you must first turn your handlebars to the left to allow the reserviour to sit horizontally. At which point my fluid level was fine.

I had checked my engine oil level after a rider with the bike in the upright position and it was low. i went to Supercheap auto but they didnt have the right oil. So i asked the Honda service guy and he said it was low and topped it up for free!

Interestingly he said i should get the bike services every 6000km not every 12000.

anyone else heard of this?
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 03:44 AM
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Interestingly he said i should get the bike services every 6000km not every 12000.

anyone else heard of this?


Yip thats i get mine serviced at is every 6000km, it even says in my owners manual and service book i got to get it done every 6000km. also change all fluids atlest once a year. (mainly if you dont do 6000km in a year, as service will do it anyway)

12000km is way to long of a time to get it serviced. i service my car every 10000km and bikes tend to need more regular service than cars also.

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 10:47 AM
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Brake fluid is also hygroscopic, its better to wait until a low humidity day to open the system. Be SURE to change at the recommended interval OR when the fluid becomes dark colored and smells burnt.


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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 12:17 PM
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The manuals state service intervals of 4,000 miles/6400 kilometers. But if you look, most of that is just inspections that you can do yourself.

The manuals state, that after the initial oil and filter change at 600 miles/1,000 kilometers, the oil filter changes are only needed every 8000 miles/12,800 kilometers. That is considerably longer than GM suggests for my car, which has a much easier life than my CB500, winter not included.

On my previous motorcycles and cars, oil changes we done every 5,000 miles/8,050 kilometers. So if you dealer rep is old school like me, that is probably why he is recommending more frequent service intervals.

My riding season is only 6 months long. So I changed the oil and filter at 1,000 kilometers/600 miles and at the end of my riding season at just over 9,600 kilometers/6,000 miles. If I ride more next year, I may adopt my old school habit of changing the oil and filter every 5,000 miles/8,050 kilometers.

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 03:24 PM
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I expect to install an oil change valve (Fumoto) on my bike and thereafter will be changing oil every 5000 miles. Oil changes on this bike should be trivial compared to my cars or truck and I am sure the engine and transmission will appreciate the more frequent interior cleanout of dirt and filings. I have no doubt that the oil itself would still have like in it. I also recycle my used oil so no problems there.

Regards,
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-02-2015, 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
I expect to install an oil change valve (Fumoto) on my bike and thereafter will be changing oil every 5000 miles. Oil changes on this bike should be trivial compared to my cars or truck and I am sure the engine and transmission will appreciate the more frequent interior cleanout of dirt and filings.
That's my feeling too. The engine oil is shared between the engine, the transmission and most importantly, the clutch. All material worn from the clutch ends up in the various journal, roller and needle bearings oil and in the filter.

It just makes sense to me to change the oil more frequently in a motorcycle than other vehicles, especially -- as you note -- it's so easy to do and disposing of used oil is so easy these days.

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