How To Check the Oil On The Honda ST1300?

You can prolong the life of ST1300’s engine by changing the engine oil and filter regularly.

You’ll learn how to locate the unique oil level window, read the dipstick properly, determine oil condition, access the oil drain and filter, use the right tools and supplies, drain old oil, install a new filter, add fresh oil, reset the indicator, and disposing of used oil safely.

Checking Oil Level in ST1300

On the Honda ST1300, there is no traditional engine oil dipstick.

Instead, the oil level is checked using the inspection window located on the right side of the crankcase, below the alternator.

This viewing window shows the oil level on a dipstick etched into the window.

Checking Oil Level When Cold vs Hot

When checking the ST1300’s oil level, it is important to check it when the engine is warm, after being idle for 3-5 minutes.

This ensures the oil has circulated and provides an accurate reading.

Checking when cold can cause a false low reading.

Understanding the Oil Level Indicator Window

The inspection window on the right crankcase shows the engine oil level on an etched plastic dipstick.

There are upper and lower-level marks. The oil should be between these two marks to ensure proper oil level for safe operation.

Reading the Dipstick Properly

When warm, the oil level must be checked through the window and read on the dipstick etching.

It should be between the upper and lower marks.

If below the lower mark, oil must be added until it reaches the upper mark to ensure safe lubrication.

Frequency of Oil Level Checks

Honda recommends checking the ST1300’s oil level every day before riding the motorcycle.

This ensures the proper oil level is maintained for safe engine operation.

Adding Oil If Needed

If the oil level is low, remove the oil filler cap located under the rider seat.

Add Honda GN4 10W-40 oil one bottle at a time, rechecking the level each time.

Stop adding once the oil level reaches the upper mark in the window.

ST1300 Oil Specs

Honda specifies using their Pro Honda GN4 or HP4 10W-40 oil, or an equivalent standard motorcycle oil.

10W-40 weight provides good warm engine and cold start protection.

The ST1300 engine holds 3.8 quarts (3.6 liters) of oil after draining the crankcase and replacing the oil filter.

ST1300 Oil specifications and change intervals have been discussed in detail in the linked article.

Prepping for the Oil Change

When checking the oil level, inspect the color and condition through the window.

It should be amber/brown and free of contaminants. Black, gritty oil indicates the need for an oil change.

Checking for Oil Leaks

When checking the oil level, visually inspect the engine and underside of the bike for any signs of external oil leaks from gaskets, seals, or hoses.

Leaks need to be addressed to prevent oil loss.

Oil Change Frequency

The ST1300 owner’s manual specifies changing engine oil and filters every 8,000 miles (12,500 km) or 12 months.

More frequent changes may be needed with heavy use or dirty conditions.

Locating the Oil Filter

The oil filter on the ST1300 is located under the left fairing cover, mounted to the front of the engine. Remove the fairing for access.

Oil Drain Plug Accessibility

The ST1300 oil drain plug is located underneath the engine, accessible from the left side.

Use a 17mm box end wrench to remove it and drain the old oil into a drain pan.

Using Proper Tools and Supplies

Changing the ST1300’s oil requires a 17mm wrench for the drain plug, oil filter wrench, fresh crush washer for the drain plug, oil drain pan, shop rags, and the specified 4 quarts of new 10W-40 motor oil.

Step-by-Step Oil Change Procedure

With the bike on the center stand and cool, start by removing the fairing cover.

Use a wrench to remove the oil drain plug and drain the oil completely.

Replace the drain plug with a new crush washer tightened to 18 ft lbs.

Use an oil filter wrench to remove the old filter and install a new one tightening it to 16 ft-lbs.

Add 4 quarts of Pro Honda 10W-40 oil through the filler hole. Start the engine and let it idle for 3-5 minutes.

Recheck the level and add any additional oil needed to bring it to the upper mark.

Properly dispose of the old oil and filter. Reinstall the fairings securely.

Proper Oil Disposal

Used oil should be poured into a sealed container and taken to a recycling center.

Most auto parts stores also collect used oil for recycling. Never dump down a drain or on the ground.

Resetting the Oil Life Indicator

The ST1300 does not have an oil life monitoring system, so no reset is needed after an oil change. Follow the owner’s manual for routine change intervals.

Precautions and Tips for Safe Oil Handling

Wear protective gloves and eyewear when changing oil.

Make sure the bike is secure on the center stand.

Check that all drain plugs and filters are installed correctly and tightened to spec. Dispose of oil responsibly.


Performing regular oil changes is vital to keep your ST1300 running at peak performance.

Follow the steps outlined here to drain old oil, replace the filter, and refill with fresh oil per Honda’s specifications.

Use the correct tools and take safety precautions.

Properly disposing of used oil protects the environment.

Refer to your owner’s manual for the recommended interval, and inspect oil condition frequently.

With basic mechanical skills and the right supplies, you can do this routine maintenance yourself and extend the long-term life of your ST1300’s engine.

Stay on top of oil changes and filter replacements, and your ride will stay happy and healthy for miles to come.

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