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oil change & air filter change ITS TIME!!

10401 Views 18 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Delta107
Hey guys,
The 08 FI Ninja's gone 1200 kms already. Time for its first service. Now, without asking any questions first, I know I must change the oil and oil filter.
I am looking to buy the kawasaki genuine engine oil 10w-40 non synthetic and a kawasaki genuine oil filter if there is one. I also want to buy a K&N air filter! Have heard numerous stories about why a K&N air filter is GOOD and BAD for the 250 ninja. By the way, I got an aftermarket megacycle slip on as my only mod if this helps with your suggestions.

I want to know what you guys think? What advice would you give me? What are the benefits of each one?

- Should I get standard mineral oil OR synthetic oil?
- Should I buy a K&N air filter OR stick with the standard air filter?
- how much $$$$ would the oil / oil filter / air filter cost?

Lastly, I've read all the posts/threads on oil changing/servicing etc on the ninja 250. There are plenty of mixed decisions and arguments for and against buying genuine kawasaki mineral oil compared to buying synthetic oil.

Any and every helpful advice is welcome and will be gratefully appreciated!
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Personally, I have yet to see an argument for or against synthetic that actually proves it's better than dyno juice. I've been running regular Kawi oil in my engine since I got it, and it's got almost 20K miles on it and no issues...

I like regular dyno juice cause you have to change it more often, which allows you to see what it looks like, etc,etc so you know if something is wrong... If ever I were to go on a long road-trip though, I'd go to full-synthetic, and pay the $50 or so in oil so I wouldn't have to change it on the trip...

I recommend regular oil, a K&N air filter, and your K&N will probably be about twice what you pay for the oil and oil filter.... Maybe $80 total?

My oil changes cost me $13 usually, including filter... I also get a bit of a discount at my local shop... :p

Random info: I'm also still on the original Kawi, foam air filter (washing it every oil change -1,500mi), and it seems to be doing great still!

But like you, I've heard goods things about both, so maybe, in the end, it comes down to how much you want to spend, eh? :p

Good luck!
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I changed to semi-synthetic when I bought my bike, but that had 11-12k kms on it. There was an instant difference in the way it sounded and shifted, so much more smoother. The only thing I have heard is to not change too quickly to synthetic, but make sure your bike is well broken in first.
Indie bought a K&N for his cruiser, and said it was a huge change, but very expensive. Supposedly, you never have to replace it, it has a lifetime warranty, but then you have someone like Spooph who has never had to change his standard filter, cause he looks after it so well!!
My only complaint still is you have the FI model!!! :p
TO SPOOPH & ZANDIT: Thanks so much for the feedback guys, greatly appreciated! The bike has only gone 1200kms, I reckon ive broken it in already. Ive taken it for the usual cruisy rides up to the beach/pizza/coffee, usually each weekend will be 200kms +. Last weekend i took the bike on a single trip 180km to the mountains of hanging rock.

to spooph: How does your oil change cost you only $13? is that oil + oil filter together? That sounds very cheap!
what do you guys think of the Silkolene Super 4 Semi-synthetic 4 stroke oil 10w-40 ? Only $14.95!
Didn't use that one, I used a motul semi, that was 10w-50 cause of the colder weather down here in Tassie.
My oil change is cheap because I buy one from the moto-shop about once a month, and other things as well. I usually give the shop about 1/8 of my paycheck every paycheck, so they know I'm consistent, and spend a lot of money there, so give me deals on everything... :p I also refer them A LOT of business...

Concerning your choice of oil, I've found that what matters more is the oil weight, not the brand. They're pretty much the same across the board, as long as you do frequent oil changes. If you start going more than 3,000 miles (5800km??) between changes, it will start to matter more, which is why brand doesn't me.... If you find something concrete to dispute this, please share, I'd love to know! So go with the cheap oil, hell i buy the cheapest Kawi oil, and my engine is still looking great - all tolerances WELL within speck!

There is one thing that bothers me, personally, about synthetic, and that is that I know, in general, things which get used up serve a purpose. So if I know I go 1,500 miles on an oil change, and then the oil gets worked out, and a synthetic brand will last me 2 or 3 times as long, it means it's not wearing out, and I'm a little skeptical about how well it's doing it's job.... Like I said, personal opinion and skepticism, not founded in anything. Everybody says synthetic is a lot smoother, and that worries me, because I'm not sure that's a good thing. Oil doesn't just lubricate, it also cleans your engine (necessitating the need to change it, to keep the engine clean), and if the synthetic lasts longer, it means it's not undergoing the same chemical and physical changes, in the same amount of time as the dyno juice. Not even to mention the additives.... To me, it feels like synthetic is there to do just one thing, and that is to lubricate the engine, not be the life-blood, as I've experienced dyno juice to be.... Somebody please tell me if I'm way off base here... :p

Zandit, why did you go with heavier oil for the cold? I thought it was the other way around? Rectify my thinking, eh?
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ummm, actually I didn't have a choice!! when I bought the bike, the oil, filter, security lock and a couple of other things came with the bike! lol, but looking at the bottle and the operation manual for the bike, the 10w-50 had a broader temperature coverage
huh, what do ya know! I'm going to be doing an oil change tomorrow, and I'm think I'll go down to 5w-30. I think that's what the manual recommends for colder weather, but I'll make sure and check before I do anything...
Been a while since I been on these forums. Ok guys finally bought the Motul 5100 10W-40 Semi Synthetic[]http://www.motul.com.au/product_line_up/4stroke/4stroke18.html] & will buy the uni flow oil filter tomorrow. I thought I'd buy the Semi Synth as the bike has gone 1500 kms already & the engine has been run in good in my opinion.

I'm trying to find a write-up / video / photos on the oil change for the ninja 250R but cant seem to find anything. Can you guys help me please? These questions might sound stupid, although I don't know, I want to know:

- Is it the Right side fairing I take off?
- how many litres does the oil take?
- is it best to change oil when bike is cold or hot?
- what special tools do I need?

I service the cars at home and this will be the first I service my motorbike, I have most the motor vehicle tools you'll find in any normal garage, but is there any other special tool I need when servicing the motorbike?
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Dan Johns

CCY and Me.


These are just the highlights. Many others also have very good points, and it's a great discussion. It's worth the read.

It doesn't seem that we have a dedicated oil-change "how-to".... I'll work on that, but it's 1,500 miles away... I just did mine last night, but regrettably didn't take pictures.... Didn't see the thread in time, sorry. Unless somebody buys be me another oil change, and I'll do a write-up... :p

To answer your questions:
1.) You don't have to take off any fairings to do an oil change. To clean the air filter you have to take off the right side black side cover - one phillips heads screw and it pops off... Some of this is also in your owner's manual.
2.) 2L
3.) It is best to change the oil, lube the chain when the bike is up to temperature. Be careful, the oil will be hot ~200F (95C), like right after your commute home from work, or at least a 20 minute ride...
4.) You shouldn't need any special tools. a 17mm fits both the drain plugs, and the oil canister bolt. The air filter box hex screws are 6mm keys... MAKE SURE TO GET NEW ALUMINUM CRUSH WASHERS FOR EITHER/BOTH OF THE DRAIN PLUGS YOU REMOVE.... If you forget, you can use the old ones, it's just nice knowing you have a brand new seal....

Hope this helps, keep asking questions...
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Urgh I just spent $87 bucks on 4lt of fully-synth Motul... what a ripoff. What kills me is I dump the stuff out regularly since I'm racing it.


Thanks for that reply spooph, greatly appreciated. Why is it important to warm up engine before draining oil?
Is it also time to change the air filter now too? Its gone 1500km!

TO FELIX: Sorry to hear that? Whys it so expensive? What Motul oil did u get?
Motul 7100 4T 10W40

Was looking at finding some 300V 4T FACTORYLINE 10W40, but I would imagine it would cost a fortune.


xcwizit - the oil runs better when it's hot, so you'll get more out.... You could just wash out the air filter with Dawn or equivalent dish soap, and re-oil with WD40 or better would be a light oil... I did this for the first 18,000 miles on my ninja. Kawi makes an air-filter "care" kit that has a detergent and red filter oil. I've been using this, and it makes the job a lot easier.

It's basically NoToil products rebadget for Kawi... NoToil is really good stuff!

Delat - thanks for those links!
just finished servicing the bike and took it for a ride to the beach. I used Motul 5100 10W-40 $65 Semi Synthetic, OEM Kawasaki Oil Filter $15, OEM Kawasaki Air Filter $15. Im not sure why I can't tell if it goes better or smoother maybe because it was a 32C degree day in Melbourne, But I feel so much better now that the bike has had its first service.

Heres some pics of the servicing!

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$65 bucks for a gallon of semi synthetic oil? Thats crazy! It should at least be full synthetic. anyways whatever. Thanks for posting pics
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