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Thread: oil in the airbox?

  1. #1

    oil in the airbox?

    There's a 1/4-turn plug at the left rear underside of the air box on my '03 1150R. It has an O-ring seal on it. I noticed today that it appears to be leaking oil, actually found a small drop on the ground in the garage. I removed the plug and cleaned it off, but you really can't get a good look into the hole it plugs. I removed the air filter and, while it is 10K old and needs replaced, it wasn't totally clogged or anything. The bike has been running fine, no smoke on start-up or unusual oil consumption. I did just return from a 1200-mile weekend.

    Why would there be oil in my airbox? Should I be concerned? The bike has 19,700 miles on it and was just dealer-serviced for the 18,000-mile tune-up a few weeks ago.


  2. #2
    I love Big Twins! Tominator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Toronto Ontario
    Its not uncommon to have some oil in the air box. Most oil heads have a screw at the bottom of the air box to drain some of the oil that collects in that area of the air box. This oil is part of the crankcase ventilation system and BMW's plan is to vent it inside the breather. Even the old Air Heads have a similar system. I have a R1100S and usually each oil change I drain any oil that has accumulated within the air box.

    Not to worry!
    "All you need to start an asylum is an empty room and the right kind of people."

  3. #3
    That's normal. The plug is a drain for oil that collects over time from the breather. If oil didn't collect there, they wouldn't have designed a drain plug.
    Frank G.
    Hattiesburg, Mississippi
    2004 R1150RT

  4. #4
    leave my monkey alone LORAZEPAM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    West Salem, OH
    No big deal, the dealer probably got the oil full. It will migrate to the Airbox. Be glad it was just a drop or two when you took that plug out. it is part of the pcv system on the bike, and some have reported a fair amount of oil there if they have overfilled the crankcase with oil.
    Gale Smith
    2009 Versys
    1999 R1100RT

  5. #5

    "whew!" (a sigh of relief)

    Awesome, thanks for setting my mind at ease everyone!


  6. #6
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Fly Over Land
    It ia not uncommon. Check and drain it when you change your oil. My 02 50R, in the first 10K sucked oil into the airbox. It has stopped with no good explination. It did somehow allowed some oil to spill into the intake and turned the bike into a high priced two wheel bug sprayer. Live and learn, but do not worry.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

  7. #7
    I drain the air box on my R1200C every now and then, thanks to Pokie...

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