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Thread: 2012 R1200GS "Burnt Oil Smell"

  1. #1
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    2012 R1200GS "Burnt Oil Smell"

    A bit of information first:

    2012 R1200GS - 6.5K miles - purchased used with 2.5K miles. At 3K mile I changed the oil, oil filter, transmission fluid, and final drive, primarily to replace all the drain plugs with "DIMPLE" plugs. During the process, I found the dealer overfilled the final drive, the drain totaled (215cc). I refilled to 180cc. Over the next 3K miles the engine oil has dropped less than 25% of the sight glass. I had the BMW dealer performed the 6K mile service recently, but not the oil, oil filter change, I did that myself.

    ISSUE:

    Right from the onset of my acquiring the 12GS, on occasions when I'd come to a stop, I could detect the odor of burnt oil.

    WHAT I'VE DONE"

    I obviously monitored the oil consumption and IMO the drop in the sight glass was NORMAL. I examined the drain plugs, oil filter, bone dry. I examined the engine the best I could and for the life of me cannot find anything that would point to an oil leak.

    I searched some forums, and found a threat about the "cam tensioner bolt" not being torqued properly from the factory. I looked at the bolt with a light and mirror, and found no evidence of weeping oil.

    I called the BMW dealer and asked about the cam tensioner bolt being the culprit, he said, in his three years, he has only seen 2 units that the cam tensioner bolt was not torqued properly.

    QUESTIONS:

    If the cam tensioner bolt was not properly torqued, and the oil smell is coming from it, wouldn't I see some visible sign of weeping?

    Based on the aforementioned information, what other possible avenue or areas can you advise I look.

    Thanks in advance.

    Regards,

    73516
    Michigan

  2. #2
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    It's pretty easy to wind up with two oil filter gaskets on these bikes since it's easy to overlook the fact the old gasket separated from the existing filter when it was removed and remained "stuck" to the engine filter flange. Two of these rubber quad rings together can create a leak source.
    Kent Christensen
    21482
    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

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    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    It's pretty easy to wind up with two oil filter gaskets on these bikes since it's easy to overlook the fact the old gasket separated from the existing filter when it was removed and remained "stuck" to the engine filter flange. Two of these rubber quad rings together can create a leak source.
    Kent

    Thanks for the reply, I made positively sure all gaskets were removed. When I removed the filter, I noted it being stuck to surface area. I removed it, and wiped clean the surface area prior to installing new filter.

    thanks

    73515

  4. #4
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Look carefully for any sign of minor seepage that has gotton on the exhaust. A drop of oil on top of a cat-con can make a lot of smoke and stink. The culprits are usually a little seepage at the engine crankshaft seal or transmission front shaft seal - which eventually finds its way down to the exhaust.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves

  5. #5
    MOA #188066 tf78933's Avatar
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    I have the same problem. After my 12k service, I noticed a burnt oil smell whenever I came to a stop. Took it back to the dealer and they insist there is no leak. It has to be coming from somewhere.

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    One thing to keep in mind about R1200s
    Draining tranny fluid without getting some on the pipe is a bit tricky. I suspect most shops don't worry about it and just wipe off what they can- in which case the remnant will stink until it burns off.
    Locate the tranny drain plug and follow the likely drip path to the pipe to inspect for this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    Look carefully for any sign of minor seepage that has gotton on the exhaust. A drop of oil on top of a cat-con can make a lot of smoke and stink. The culprits are usually a little seepage at the engine crankshaft seal or transmission front shaft seal - which eventually finds its way down to the exhaust.
    Paul

    Thank you for your reply. I checked the cat/conv zero sign of anything on it.

    73516

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    Quote Originally Posted by racer7 View Post
    One thing to keep in mind about R1200s
    Draining tranny fluid without getting some on the pipe is a bit tricky. I suspect most shops don't worry about it and just wipe off what they can- in which case the remnant will stink until it burns off.
    Locate the tranny drain plug and follow the likely drip path to the pipe to inspect for this.
    Racer7

    Long ago I got a tip to address specifically the point you are making. The tip is to take tin foil and fashion a trough to direct the tranny gear lube from the drain plug to the drain pan. It works perfectly.

    Thanks for your reply.

    73516

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    Quote Originally Posted by tf78933 View Post
    I have the same problem. After my 12k service, I noticed a burnt oil smell whenever I came to a stop. Took it back to the dealer and they insist there is no leak. It has to be coming from somewhere.
    FYI,

    If you visit Advrider forum you'll find many GS owners that have the same issue.

    73516

  10. #10
    Registered User liv2ride's Avatar
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    Had a similar experience...

    With my '12 RT. I didn't think too much about it because I knew there was no leak as there was no detectable dripping. I simply wrote it off as the the typical oil consumption known for low mileage R bikes.

    There was the slightest amount seeping out from around the oil fill plug and the valve cover bolt seals on the same side that has stopped. I also suspect some of the smell was attributed to the oil that passes the rings, especially when running the engine at higher revs for longer periods.

    Smell has completely stopped and consumption slowed. I currently have a bit over 10k miles, couldn't be happier.

    I wouldn't sweat it. The bike has a warranty, use it when/if you need it.

    Scot
    2012 R1200RT - Fluid Grey Metallic

  11. #11
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    Kent Christensen
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    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

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    Kent

    I've responded to Dave's comments, waiting for his response.

    The forum is a big part why I belong to BMWOA, amazing brain trust in its membership.

    Thanks to everyone.

    Regards

    73515
    Michigan

  13. #13
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    A trip to the BMW Dealership:

    the service manager took a flexible LED light and looked over the engine and found nothing that would indicate any sort of oil leak. Which was precisely what I determined on my own. His comments were: the oil level might be a bit high, which I disagreed with. When I changed the oil, I intentionally limited the oil refill to less than full sight glass, and that was apparent upon his examination. BMW, suggests 4qt when changing the oil and filter. When the dealership did the 600 mi service, they clearly filled the oil sight glass with out any open space, so I presume they used all 4 qts. He also, said the engine oil will find its own level, and suggested something about it leaking via the pistons thru the exhaust?????? The odor continues and appears to be stronger. But again, no leaks, nor oil loss being noticed. So at this juncture I'm at a LOSS as what to do. He further noted I've got 36K and 2 years left on my warranty, which is accurate, but not very reassuring as to their ability to diagnose this issue.

    If you can provide me advice I certainly would appreciate it.

    73516

  14. #14
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Oil cold, bike on centerstand, top of oil at dot in middle of the sight glass.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
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    Paul,

    Thank you. Your wealth of knowledge and experience is reassuring. I will today, drain that amount of oil that will bring the level down to the center of the glass (COLD).

    73516

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