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Thread: 2012 R1200RT 600 mi service with unapproved oil?

  1. #16
    Registered User liv2ride's Avatar
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    Fwiw

    Quote Originally Posted by crawfcj View Post
    I followed that thread and the last post mentioned that BMW had indicated synthetic for the camheads, but nothing about 20W-50.

    By the way, here are the approved oils listed in the manual:

    Engine oil
    Engine oil, capacity max 1.1 gal (max 4.0 l), with filter change
    products recommended by BMW Motorrad and generally permissible viscosity classes
    SAE 5W-40, API SF/ACEA A2, or better ≥-4 ??F (≥-20 ??C)
    SAE 5W-≥50, API SF/ACEA A2, or better ≥-4 ??F (≥-20 ??C)
    SAE 10W-40, API SF/ACEA A2, or better ≥14 ??F (≥-10 ??C)
    SAE 10W-≥50, API SF/ACEA A2, or better ≥-4 ??F (≥-20 ??C)
    SAE 15W-≥40, API SF/ACEA A2, or better ≥32 ??F (≥0 ??C)

    My dealer used BMW 15W-50 synthetic at the 600 mile service on my '12 RT. I asked many questions then determined if this is due to a change that BMW has made I will go along with it. If for no other reason to ensure I don't have challenges for warranty claims down the road.

    The dealer appeared to be flexible and would have used dino if I preferred. I am at about 3k miles now and the bike has used almost a full quart since the 600 mile service. I have been keeping impeccable records and will present them to the dealer at the next service point, although I do plan on performing the service on my own.

    I hope this helps.

    Aloha.

    Scot

  2. #17
    Touring Rider
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    I have used 10w-40 since day 1. Dinosaur up to 5000 miles and synthetic ever since. At 15k now and minimal oil consumption. Even in Arizona summer heat. I don't intend to change.
    Gary
    Casa Grande, AZ
    2011 R1200RT

  3. #18
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    BMW NA gace me an "answer."

    Well, I promised I would share whatever answer BMW would provide on this subject. Looking at the exchange below, read my letter the bottom and you will see that instead of accusing a dealer of making a mistake, which I thought might bias the reply, I implied that I installed the 20W-50 and later found the manual to not include that viscosity oil. I had hoped they would tell me I was ok or that I was wrong. Either way, I could have known what to do. The response, however, provides no information that I find helpful.


    CustomerRelations@bmwusa.com

    Dear Charlie,

    Thank you for contacting BMW Motorrad USA regarding your 2012 BMW R 1200 RT US. We always enjoy hearing from our riders.

    The service team at your local BMW Motorrad dealer has the expertise to provide you with detailed technical support to fully address your inquiry. A list of our authorized BMW Motorrad dealers can be found on our website: www.bmwmotorcycles.com, under the "Find a dealer" link.

    For any non-technical inquiries, you can contact the Customer Relations and Services Department at 1-800-831-1117, Monday through Friday from 9:00 A.M. to 9:00 P.M., Eastern Standard Time.

    Regards,

    Channin Diggs
    BMW Motorrad USA

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: 12/27/2012 12:00:00 AM
    To: CustRel2
    Subject: BMW R1200RT 600 mile service oil question

    Hello,

    Thank you for reading this email. My question is, do you recommend I use BMW 20W-50 (non-synthetic) oil in my new 2012 BMW R1200RT motorcycle for its 600 mile service? The riders manual does not list that oil for my motorcycle.

    If that viscosity oil is recommended for the 2012 R1200RT, why isn't it listed in the owner's guide/ Is there an update from BMW that includes that oil for my motorcycle?

    If that oil is not recommended or approved, and I have already installed it, should I go ahead and change it again? The operating temperatures where I live are between 20F and 70F for the next four months, which means a cold start below 40 degrees each day.

    Thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions. I want to treat my motorcycle in the best possible way and hope that i haven't made a serious mistake in installing an unapproved oil.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie


    So I asked my dealer about the oil not meeting the specs in the manual and his reply was:

    20w50 is fine for the temperatures we ride in in the South. BMW has ran 20w50 in their bike for sometime now and this weight is OK for your motorcycles.
    I will contact our rep just to see if I can get some clarity on the changes to the owners manual for you.


    Ah well. Almost sounds like an oil thread. I will follow the specific oil and viscosity recommendations in the manual and change it myself in the future.
    Charlie
    Auburn, Alabama
    Current - 2012 R1200RT, 2012 CBR250R, 2014 CTX700D.

  4. #19
    Registered User gsinnc's Avatar
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    WOW ... that was pretty unhelpful!
    Ed Apelian
    When Life Throws You a Curve Lean into it!
    2002 BMW R1150GS - (sold) Replaced with '12 R1200GSA Magma Red!
    2006 R1200RT- Granite Gray

  5. #20
    RAINEY 187132's Avatar
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    What a worthless canned response. Very disappointing response.
    Jason
    Grand rapids, MI
    2012 BMW R1200RT

  6. #21
    Ponch ponch1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GRLambert View Post
    I have used 10w-40 since day 1. Dinosaur up to 5000 miles and synthetic ever since. At 15k now and minimal oil consumption. Even in Arizona summer heat. I don't intend to change.

    I have a 2009 and the OM shows that 10w-40 isn't recommended for the temperatures we get here in the summer. May be the camheads are different.
    My Motorrad
    BMWMOA 162849 | BMWRA 41335 | VROC 8109-R | VBA 19

  7. #22
    Registered User gsinnc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ponch1 View Post
    I have a 2009 and the OM shows that 10w-40 isn't recommended for the temperatures we get here in the summer. May be the camheads are different.
    Yes ... that is the issue. When they came out with the Camhead motor the oil recommendation seemed to have gotten fuzzy. On all pre-2010 boxers I had always used 20w-50 dino but that does not seem to be the case for the Camheads. Hence the ongoing confusion.
    Ed Apelian
    When Life Throws You a Curve Lean into it!
    2002 BMW R1150GS - (sold) Replaced with '12 R1200GSA Magma Red!
    2006 R1200RT- Granite Gray

  8. #23
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    20W-50 dino juice has never been a great oil for even the hexheads in cold weather. Doesn't pump well at cold temps and the stock battery system can barely handle the load when the temps are in the 30s- gets worse colder.
    I didn't run in my hexhead past break in and wouldn't run it in a camhead either. Boxers benefit from lubes that flow better in cold, eg synthetics, and a better battery than BMW supplies.

  9. #24
    Registered User gsinnc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by racer7 View Post
    20W-50 dino juice has never been a great oil for even the hexheads in cold weather. Doesn't pump well at cold temps and the stock battery system can barely handle the load when the temps are in the 30s- gets worse colder.
    I didn't run in my hexhead past break in and wouldn't run it in a camhead either. Boxers benefit from lubes that flow better in cold, eg synthetics, and a better battery than BMW supplies.
    Guess living in Charlotte where it may hit 30 occasionally but most times above 40 and since my bike is always garaged where temps are rarely below 55 ... 20w-50 has been what I run all year in all my BMW's. Never had an issue starting and never burned any oil in my boxers. I used to switch to 10w-40 in winter but everyone including the dealer suggested that was not necessary. I have owned ... '97 R1100RT, '02 R1150GS, '05 K1200LT and currently '06 R1200RT along with my new camhead. All except camhead have run 20w-50 dino and had it changed at least every 2000 miles ... YES I am OCD and VERY anal.
    Ed Apelian
    When Life Throws You a Curve Lean into it!
    2002 BMW R1150GS - (sold) Replaced with '12 R1200GSA Magma Red!
    2006 R1200RT- Granite Gray

  10. #25
    Ponch ponch1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by racer7 View Post
    20W-50 dino juice has never been a great oil for even the hexheads in cold weather. Doesn't pump well at cold temps and the stock battery system can barely handle the load when the temps are in the 30s- gets worse colder.
    I didn't run in my hexhead past break in and wouldn't run it in a camhead either. Boxers benefit from lubes that flow better in cold, eg synthetics, and a better battery than BMW supplies.
    I had been using Castrol 4T before moving to AZ. When I changed the oil a few months back, it was beat and black. Funny thing is when I lived in Iowa, the oil looked a lot better when I changed it. The heat must really kill oil, even if it's only another 20-25 degrees. At last oil change, I switched to 15w-50 Mobil 1.
    My Motorrad
    BMWMOA 162849 | BMWRA 41335 | VROC 8109-R | VBA 19

  11. #26
    Norm Norms 427's Avatar
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    I think automobile and m/cycle manufactures in the last several years have been moving toward lower viscosity ratings for the "W" rating, or the first and lowest number. Motorrad has been doing the same. Easier starting, marginally better fuel consumption during warm-up, etc. Most, or at least a large amount, of engine wear happens in the first couple of minutes of startup.

    Living in Arizona or Texas one might think they don't need 5W or 10W ... but I think they do. Sixty degrees F is still "cold", relatively speaking, to an engine. JMHO.

    BTW, I've just switched to a Mobil 1 full synthetic 0W-40 in my sports car which formally used a Mobil 1 full syn 5W-30 from the factory. The 0W-40 is the factory approved oil for Europe while the 5W-30 is the specified oil for N. America.
    Last edited by Norms 427; 01-15-2013 at 03:45 PM.
    Now: '12 R1200RT Midnight Blue Metallic / '11 Ural Patrol 2WD ridden to Alaska / '09 KLR 650 / '05 HD Heritage Softail / '08 Harley Sportster 1200C / '85 Yamaha VMax bought new. I wasn't ready to say goodbye: www.shaunlunt.typepad.com

  12. #27
    Registered User Brian-NC's Avatar
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    I think you have a good point. BMW prides itself in being exacting in most everything and very anal about the smallest of details. You paid a pretty penny for that new Beemer and that 600 mile "break in" service. In reality, when you march in the dealership to discuss your problem, the all knowing mechanics will most likely tell you it doesn't make a bit of difference. And they're probably right. I'd still bring it to their attention.

    My advice is, ride the hell out of that bike and do you own oil changes.
    Brian-NC
    (Matthews)
    Current bike
    2010 RT Ostra Grey

  13. #28
    Registered User marcopolo's Avatar
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    Seems pretty straightforward to me, use the oil that BMW recommends in your bike's owner's manual (and when I say BMW, I mean BMW Motorrad, not your local dealer). Unless I misread one of your posts, the reply you got from your dealer seemed to suggest that the dealer wasn't even aware that the recommended viscosities changed with the introduction of the camheads. If that's true, it's hardly confidence inspiring is it. If BMW has made a change since your owner's manual was printed, I'd ask for a copy of the bulletin. I have my bike serviced by an independent BMW tech. He's always used 20W50 in my 2006 RT, but if I recall correctly, he uses 10W40 in camheads.
    Mark
    2006 R1200RT

  14. #29
    Registered User gsinnc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcopolo View Post
    Seems pretty straightforward to me, use the oil that BMW recommends in your bike's owner's manual (and when I say BMW, I mean BMW Motorrad, not your local dealer). Unless I misread one of your posts, the reply you got from your dealer seemed to suggest that the dealer wasn't even aware that the recommended viscosities changed with the introduction of the camheads. If that's true, it's hardly confidence inspiring is it. If BMW has made a change since your owner's manual was printed, I'd ask for a copy of the bulletin. I have my bike serviced by an independent BMW tech. He's always used 20W50 in my 2006 RT, but if I recall correctly, he uses 10W40 in camheads.
    Same here with my '06 RT and new Camhead.
    Ed Apelian
    When Life Throws You a Curve Lean into it!
    2002 BMW R1150GS - (sold) Replaced with '12 R1200GSA Magma Red!
    2006 R1200RT- Granite Gray

  15. #30
    Watch This!!! junkjohn's Avatar
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    Could it be a typo on the invoice, they have been writing 20-50 for a long time. I would definitly talk to the service manager.
    John Simonds
    2008 R 1200 GSA
    1975 850 Norton Roadster
    If it ain"t broke... fix it till it is.

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