Oil Change Instructions for a Harley Shovelhead

Updated February 28, 2017

An oil change is part of a regular maintenance routine for any vehicle. Changing the oil on your Harley Shovelhead should only take half an hour to complete and is a straightforward process. There are only a few tools required to complete the job. After you change the oil you will be free to enjoy the open road once again. Just make sure you bring your old oil to an auto parts store for proper disposal.

Purchase an oil filter and oil from an auto parts store. Tell them what year your Shovelhead is so you get the right items.

Position your Harley Shovelhead on a level area and run the engine for 5 to 10 minutes. This will allow sediment to circulate and let the oil warm up a bit for easier draining. Turn the engine off after this time.

Locate the drain plug on the side of the crankcase. Put a dripping pan under it.

Loosen and remove the drain plug with a socket wrench. Allow the oil to drain into the dripping pan for about 10 minutes, or until it completely stops dripping. Put the drain plug back into position and tighten it with a socket wrench.

Loosen the oil filter with an oil filter wrench. Flip it over and allow it to drain into the dripping pan. Put a new oil filter in position and tighten it with the oil filter wrench until snug.

Locate the oil reserve fill hole on the side of the bike about halfway up, and turn the cap counterclockwise to remove it. Pour fresh oil through a funnel into the reservoir hole. Check the level on the dipstick that is located under the reservoir cap. If the oil is not registering between the two recommended fluid lines, add oil until it reaches the recommended level.

Dispose of the oil by taking it to an auto parts store.

Things You'll Need

  • Dripping pan
  • Socket wrench set
  • Oil filter
  • Oil
  • Oil filter wrench
  • Funnel
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