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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just checked the oil level of my 05 Dyna after riding back to work from home and in addition to regular oil, I found a bunch of off-white greasy stuff on the inside of the neck of the oil tank. It kinda looks like what you get when oil and water get mixed but I have absolutely no idea how water could have contaminated the oil. Bike has just under 5K miles on it. Any thoughts?
 

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BTW, where in NoCal? I went to HS in Anderson.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Condensation, eh?

OK...so is it likely to have damaged the engine? I'm a bit nervous about running it now, actually. Should I just get it up to operating temperature and ride it for an hour or so?
 

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If the bike has been ridden only on short trips, then that could be the cause of condensation build up. If thats what you are seeing. Under those conditions, the motor will not reach operating temp long enough to burn off the condensation, thus requiring more frequent oil changes.
First thing I would do is to change the motor oil.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Oil

Thanks for the input, guys. I'll take the bike home and change the oil tonight. I have a feeling my short (10 minute) commute is the root of the problem. Guess I need to finding a longer route to my office, which is only 2 miles away!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
one last question

Would you think that running the engine with the oil in this state is likely to cause damage to the engine? I'm nervous about riding it home, particularly since the dealership is just up the street from my office and I could push it there. What do you think?
 

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OrangeTJ said:
Would you think that running the engine with the oil in this state is likely to cause damage to the engine? I'm nervous about riding it home, particularly since the dealership is just up the street from my office and I could push it there. What do you think?
Sure to be many ideas about this. But I'd ride it home and change the oil.
 

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OrangeTJ said:
Would you think that running the engine with the oil in this state is likely to cause damage to the engine? I'm nervous about riding it home, particularly since the dealership is just up the street from my office and I could push it there. What do you think?
Riding it won't hurt anything. I'd ride it for at least a half hour then drain the
oil while it's still hot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hmmm

Thanks for the suggestion....I'll pass! Granted, I would probably be in a bit better of shape if I just rode my bicyle to work, but what's the fun in that!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks!

Thanks for all the input! It's great to have a resource of such knowledgeable folks on the board.
 

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In the spring and fall condensation is very possible. As stated before taking short rides wont burn it off. I think that synthetic oils arent as prone to this.
You may want to give that a try.
 

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OrangeTJ said:
Would you think that running the engine with the oil in this state is likely to cause damage to the engine? I'm nervous about riding it home, particularly since the dealership is just up the street from my office and I could push it there. What do you think?
If all you have is a little gunk around the neck I wouldn't worry too much about it. Wipe it out and ride it. If the oil is discolored you have a problem and I'd be inclined to change it before you start the engine.

Most people are anal about their bikes, especially on the forums! Don't worry too much about them, they're just engines and wheels. I'll bet if you, and most of these guys here, go out to your car you'll find the same thing if you take off the oil fill cap. Changing your oil isn't going to fix the problem anyway, you need to change your riding habits or make it a point to do a hard run for an hour every week. And if you want you can tell your wife I told you to! Not that it will do any good but its worth a shot.
 

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If you run the oil you have in to temp for some time there is not a thing wrong with it. It will burn the condensation off and the oil will be fine. Just changing oil is not going to cook off all the muck oil/water mix you are seeing, you need to heat the metal to heat the oil to cook it off.
 

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Man .. Jamie - that was downright cruel :chopper: .

If you're talking about an air cooled engine, ride the bike enough to get it hot then change the oil. If you're riding a water cooled bike, you may have a problem - water leaking into the oil. In that case, change the oil and look at the oil that comes out. If it looks funny, take the bike to get it serviced and take your big wallet.

After that, ya gotta get the oil hot enough to begin evaporating any water that condenses in the engine when it cools after the last ride (air gets slowly drawn into the engine). Normally, it's only a small amount. But if you don't ride it long enough to get rid of all the moisture, it builds up. Voila! Slimy, gooey, watery, oily mess around the filler neck.
 

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Follow the Coastie's advice. You are doing your engine a BIG dis-service with only a 10 minute commute and you will continually have condensation problems. If you can't ride for at least 10-15 miles, don't even start it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
10-15 miles minimum

Hmmm....I imagine the exact same phenomenon applies to cars here, so given that either of my other vehicles would be significantly more expensive to get a new engine swapped into, I figure on keeping on riding my bike to work! I'll be sure to tell my wife I've got to get out for at least an hour or so once a week for the sake of my engine. With 2 small kids at home, if I didn't ride to and from work, I wouldn't get to ride very often at all!
 
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