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Hi, I just change the oil and oil filter on my 2011 R1200GSA. I let the oil drain completely until nothing was coming from the filter hole and the oil plug hole. Then, I installed a new filter and put the plug back on and added 4 full quarts. I wait a bit and let the oil settle and saw on the glass that it was all the way up. I turned on the bike and noticed that the oil on the window was getting lower and lower and lower until basically just saw a little bit at the bottom. I freaked out and turn the bike off and saw the level going back up all the way to the half of the circle. I let it sit there overnight and this morning it was all the way to the top, turned the bike on again and let it run for about 5/8 minutes and saw the oil level going down to again almost not been able to see the level (maybe a little more oil than the first time when I freaked out) but then it went up as the bike was running and stayed pretty much at the middle of the glass. I turned off the bike and wait about 30 minutes and checked the level with the bike off (cold) and now it covers a little over 3/4 of the glass. What does this mean, should I top it up a little bit since I did not put the 4Litters (4.1 quarts) that BMW recommends or should I be ok?
Any help with this will be greatly appreciate it since I am going in a 5 days trip next week and I don't want to damage anything in case the oil level is low. Thanks
 

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That's normal, don't worry about it.
I usually pour about 3.5 liters then check the sight glass and keep adding until it reaches the middle of the sight glass. Start the engine, stop it and let it sit for 5 minutes and check / adjust the level.
 

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When it's not running, all the oil is in the crankcase and oil filter. Running, it's being pumped through the engine - oil passages, oil cooler, in the cam covers, etc. If it's there, it's not in the crankcase so naturally the oil level will appear lower.

If it's where it's supposed to be when it's checked according to the owner's manual, you're good.
 

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Sell the bike, it is going to blow up!
Or read the manual.
 

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My advise is do not idle the bike for 5 to 8 minutes.

Bike on the centerstand sitting static for 5 minutes If you can see oil in the sight glass anywhere in the red circle then there is plenty. If the sight glass filled past the top of the sight glass then there is too much oil. I target 50 to 90% filled in the red circle of the sight glass. And only add if well below 50%

Automotive tire Electrical wiring Wood Rim Gas
 

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2017 White GSA
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When I change my oil I add 4 quarts while on center stand.
Then I start it, let it run until radiator fan comes on, ensuring it is well circulated.
Turn it off and let it cool to touch then check sight gauge. Usually almost to the top of the inner circle, which to me is perfect.
Enjoy a couple barley pops while doing all the above.
 

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Go to Google or the BMW Motorrad site and get yourself a pdf of your bike's manual and read up on the oil level, and whatever else you don't know about your bike - it's very informative.
 

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I drain the oil, replace the filter and add 4.1 quarts. Done. 6,000 miles later repeat. I check the sight glass every now and then, but chasing the level around the glass will drive a person crazy.
 

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Those GS which are changing gears with some difficulty are better off when the oil level is a bit lower than full, I.e. at about the middle of the red circle.
Mine does change gears quite smoothly regardless the oil level, but appears to be the exception to the rule.
 

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For me since the engine oil and transmission oil are separate the engine oil level or type/grade has no effect on how the transmission shifts.
 

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Those GS which are changing gears with some difficulty are better off when the oil level is a bit lower than full, I.e. at about the middle of the red circle.
Mine does change gears quite smoothly regardless the oil level, but appears to be the exception to the rule.
You must be talking the 2013 GS/2014 GSA and later liquid cooled bikes. Interesting, I wouldn't think oil level in the shared sump would make much shift quality difference while the bike is running and at operating temp.
 

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I should indeed have specified that my remark was only valid for the liquid cooled engines.
It is a known fact that the GSes from 2013 on have a very clunky gearbox.
Part of the solution is to fill it up with less oil than mentioned in the manual, I.e 3,5 liters instead of 4 liters ( I am only familiar with the metric system, sorry, US/UK citizens ) .
Apparently all European dealers are requested to follow this instruction, which lessens the pressure as experienced by the gearbox and clutch .
 

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Any help with this will be greatly appreciate it since I am going in a 5 days trip next week and I don't want to damage anything in case the oil level is low. Thanks
Manuel,
I had similar story with my 2012 model.

Now, what I do after draining the old oil and replacing the filter:
  • fill the engine with new oil until it reaches the upper point of the red circle - usually around 3.2 - 3.5 liters. (btw walking around the bike each time may drive crazy, thanks BMW for moving the oil cap to the right side, the glass is on the left ;-) )
  • start the engine and let it run for a while (the running engine will suck up the oil so the glass will show empty, no worries)
  • stop the engine, wait 5-10 minutes for the oil to flow down
  • add enough oil just to reach the upper half of the red circle, don't struggle to cover the whole circle, it doesn't seem to be particularly reliable and you don't want to overfill the engine.

My bikes takes around 100 ml of oil per 1000 km so I usually add around 250 ml every 2500 km.

Hope your trip was OK :)
 
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