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?oil change

hi all, I bought a used 2012 yamaha 250 vstar a year ago. it had 285 miles on it. the dealer changed the oil before I took it. I did not change the oil at 600 miles. there's 3000 miles on it now. the bike runs fine.

#1, is there any issue missing the 600 mile oil change if it was done at 285?

#2, when I change the oil next, probably at 4000 miles, conventional or synthetic? the dealer said yamaha lube until about 10K and then synthetic.

I use the bike for short trips around town and occasionally longer rides.


Yamaha seems more concerned on what oil not to use. See page 7-12.

Make sure you change the oil once a year. I do this in the spring. Make sure what ever oil you use meets or exceeds the Yamalube product. Never use an oil that says "energy saving". Look for the ratings like MA SJ yada yada. Sythentic is like a french woman (or man), once you go there you can never come back.

Follow the advice of the two guru's above. Can't go wrong.

Drew....I'll stick with the French woman......

I haven't yet been promiscuous, but the French girl looking good.

Hi Lisa,
The topic of oil is one of the most misunderstood and is a topic of so many myths that continue to be passed on by self-proclaimed gurus who got their information from some other “self-proclaimed guru.” It gets very tiring.

So, let’s start with a few basic truths— 1) There is no such thing as “motorcycle oil.” While some oils may not be compatible with your bike (those with friction modifiers), any oil that meets the specifications listed in your manual will be acceptable. For example, my manual calls for oil with an API rating of SF or SG. So any oil, whether it be Yamalube or something on the shelf at Walmart is acceptable if it meets (or exceeds) that rating. I once had a knucklehead at the dealership tell me that Yamaha refines its own oil and failure to use it would void my warranty. Basically, he lied twice. None of the motorcycle manufactures refine their own oil and no manufacturer can force you to buy their oil on the condition of keeping your warranty intact. That would be a violation of the Magnuson Moss Act that was passed many years ago. 2) Another big myth— Once you run synthetic oil you can never run a petroleum-based lubricant again. With all due respect to the French (I’m not sure why they were brought into this discussion), this concept is completely false. Synthetic lubricants and petroleum-based lubricants are, in fact, compatible. After all, your local dealer carries YamaLube Semi-Synthetic which is a blend of synthetic and petroleum-base oils.

Now, this brings us to the synthetic vs. petroleum-based discussion. Which is better? Well, that depends on your operating conditions. Synthetic oils offer a few advantages—they flow better when cold and they are better at resisting thermal breakdown. A Yamaha 250 is not going to generate a lot of heat, and unless you live in southern Florida or Phoenix and spend a lot of time in stop-and-go traffic, thermal breakdown is probably not going to be a big factor. And if you don’t ride in cold weather, then you don’t need to be concerned about how well your oil flows when cold.
I use Amsoil full synthetic products in everything I own—bike, car, truck, tractor, two-stroke lawn equipment, even gun lubricant. But that doesn’t mean that you should. It ultimately comes down to your riding conditions (and mileage) and your budget. The Amsoil products allow for extended drain intervals, which is nice. But it’s really a matter of personal choice. There is nothing wrong with petroleum-based lubricants (I have run a few vehicles past 200,000 mile on them) if your operating conditions allow it. If you don’t see extreme temperatures and your budget doesn’t allow for $10-$12 per quart, one of the best oils out there is Shell Rotella (available at Walmart!). It has higher levels of zinc and phosphorous (anti-wear agents) and is compatible with wet clutches on motorcycles.

Lisa, it ultimately comes down to budget and operating conditions. But whatever you do, don’t give in to the high-pressure sales talk from a parts guy at the Yamaha dealership or a lot of the online hype about all of the myths regarding oil. For some reason, people with little or no mechanical background suddenly become “experts” when they become “bikers.” I found it interesting that the dealership told you to use Yamalube for 10,000 miles and then synthetic. Really? I would love to hear the explanation behind that. Many claim (another myth!) that synthetics are “too slippery” for new engines. If that were true, then why are so many new vehicles coming out of the factory with synthetic oil in them? I’m not sure which is worse, those that start the myths or those that perpetuate them. Lisa, use whatever oil that meets the specs in you manual and that meets you operating conditions and budget. Good luck, holler if you have any other questions.

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