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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody

As the title suggests, my bike is leaking oil :( However, I've already done the hard part and identified the source of the leak (or at least as close to the source as my mostly limited mechanical experience will allow me to do so)! I'm pretty sure that it is leaking from the oil pressure sensor (if this is what it even is - please correct me if I'm wrong).

Here are a bunch of pictures of it: imgbox - fast, simple image host

My question is how do I go about fixing this? From as far as I can tell, the seal is wearing out/has worn out and needs a new one? I have no idea if there is some kind of special way to go about this or not but my first guess was to remove the (oil pressure sensor), clean off the threading and use Teflon Tape for the new seal. Again, if I'm wrong, please let me know the correct way to fix it.

I'd greatly appreciate all the help I can get with this, I don't want to keep having to put oil in every couple of hundred miles :/

Also, if it's of any relevance, the bike is a 2007 and has roughly 11k miles on it (not sure if this is something that just happens at around this mileage or not so I figured I'd throw it in anyway).
 

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Thank you, thank you for posting some sharp, well lit photos!

I've never taken the switch off, but I was able to find a little info on it. Essentially, all you need to do is take the connector off, unscrew it and then reseat it. There isn't a gasket so you will need to seal the threads and, as you suggested, PTFE tape should be fine.

If you have a torque wrench, it needs to be tightened to 15 Nm.

You will obviously need to drain the oil, which would probably be less messy to do via the sump plug. Since you're doing that you might as well change the filter at the same time.

Edit: Also, with PTFE tape you will need to wrap it clockwise on the threads. You don't need much, just a couple of turns to get the threads covered. Something like this:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you so much bob_hackr! You told me exactly what I was hoping to hear.

I was planning on changing the oil soon anyway so doing it now is just fine with me. I'd prefer to do it sooner rather than later just in case.

I've used PTFE tape once before on my air compressor and was lucky enough to wrap it clockwise at the time, but thank you all the same. Reminders never hurt :)
 

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good pics and good advice from hackr
If all the 'Help' posts could be this good
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the compliments on the pictures guys. I hate it when help threads have pictures that are too dark and/or so zoomed in with no other reference photo that it's darn near impossible to figure out what someone is trying to show you.

Anyway, here's the deal after I put on the PTFE tape and changed the oil. I finished working on the bike as the sun had set and I took it for a short ride, maybe 10 miles, and when I got back I checked the bike for any more leaking. Unfortunately, there was once again oil in the same place right underneath what I had put the tape on! :mad: And I think I might also need to tighten up the oil filter itself a little bit more because it looked like a little bit was coming out of there now too. It was dark once I got back from my ride and there's only so much my phone's flashlight app can do lol :/

So tomorrow in the daylight I'm going to check the bike over again and see just how much oil leaked out and from where. I made sure the engine was clean after I finished changing the oil so I will be able to tell for sure that any oil on the engine is what ever leaked out.

Should I tighten up the (oil pressure sensor) a bit more just in case?
 

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I made sure the engine was clean after I finished changing the oil so I will be able to tell for sure that any oil on the engine is what ever leaked out.
This is the right way to diagnose it ... you're on track

Should I tighten up the (oil pressure sensor) a bit more just in case?
I wouldn't (yet) ... damage from stripping those threads could get expensive, if not simply a huge PITA.

But let me check I understand correctly ... you think the seepage/leak is coming from the sensor, i.e. the one with the rubber cap on it and connected to the wire? Asking because to me, it seems that the seepage/leak is coming from the darker bolt, also shown in your (great) pics, w/ the hex/allen head, if not the rubber seal/plug where the wires enter the crankase...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I am indeed concerned about stripping those threads on the sensor, simsim, especially since I don't have a torque wrench at the moment (I'll have access to one over the weekend). I haven't gone overboard tightening the sensor and I was considering tightening it further but I'm going to try and unscrew it most of the way until it is almost out and wrap it once more around with the PTFE tape. I was cautious of bob_hackr's advice and I only went around it maybe twice so I'm hoping that possibly once more around will make a better seal.

And yes, you understand correctly that I suspect that the sensor with the wire and the rubber cap is leaking, however, I did too notice that it appears that that larger darker hex bolt is leaking. If you or anyone else could possibly let me know what that bolt is or does that would be pretty cool. The reason, however, that I dismissed this hex bolt as the source of the leak is because of the location of all of the oil on the rest of the engine. I've read on a bunch of other threads regarding oil leaks that the wind, when riding, can do some pretty weird stuff to liquids. And because I can't ride my bike backwards at 25+ mph (lol) I figured that the only direction for the oil to move would be towards the back of the bike (I've found oil on this bike all the way at the back of the exhaust pipe!). So being that this sensor is the point closest to the front of the bike that I found oil, I sort of figured that it was the source. I am still, of course, open to suggestions and would happy to have someone tell me what that hex bolt does and whether or not it could be the source of the leak.
 

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The sensor needs to be replaced. The body can lose it's "seal" over time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Good news! The bike is no longer leaking! :) I wrapped the oil pressure switch once more around with the PTFE tape (which was rather difficult with it still attached and with no room to work in) just to be safe. It turns out though that this wasn't the source, or at least not the only source, of the leak...

You got me thinking simsim about that hex bolt, so I found a service manual online and sifted through for a little while and finally found what that bolt is. It turns out that it is the "oil passage plug." This bolt is supposed to be removed and an adapter is put in place that will allow the attachment of a pressure gauge while will read out what the oil pressure inside the engine is. The bolt is also supposed to be secured in place with a non-permanent locking agent. I'm guessing that it must have worn out quite a bit and had come loose because I tightened it up a 1/4 turn and went for a quick few mile ride and there was no oil anywhere anymore! :D

Once I'm home this weekend I'll drain out some (probably most) of the oil from the engine and put some red loctite on that oil passage plug and I'll probably remove the PTFE tape on the oil pressure switch and put on some silicone sealant like the service manual says and then I'll make sure that everything is torqued to spec. :) (I know all this may not be necessary but I'm a bit of a perfectionist lol.

Also, thank you locknload, I'll be sure to keep that in mind.
 

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You got me thinking simsim about that hex bolt, so I found a service manual online and sifted through for a little while and finally found what that bolt is
I had taken a look at lunchtime today on a parts fiche but ran out of time and patience before identifying it ... my hat's off to you for finding the answer

I know all this may not be necessary but I'm a bit of a perfectionist lol
Much better outcome than the opposite extreme alternative; I can relate and will only encourage you in anticipating potential problems and 'doing it right'

because I tightened it up a 1/4 turn and went for a quick few mile ride and there was no oil anywhere anymore!
would I be correct in inferring (two r's?) that it didn't take much effort to initiate that 1/4 turn? as in indicating a high probability that vibrations had, over time loosened it? anyway ... I believe the fallacy in the diagnostic reasoning you previously expressed, as to dismissal of this bolt as the source, was simply (not) taking into account that the bike is also not moving a large portion of time, thus gravity will pull the oil down, which will follow the shape of the surface with which it makes contact (until it drips off or pools). From the pictures, it seemed to me that the oil sensor was 'below' the oil passage plug.
And if I didn't get the perspective of the pictures correctly ... well, dumb luck then!

And yes, it's definitely true that winds does weird things to oil seepage/leaks, just as it's true that a very small amount of oil will cover an impressively extensive surface area, especially when aided by windflow.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I had taken a look at lunchtime today on a parts fiche but ran out of time and patience before identifying it ... my hat's off to you for finding the answer
Thanks for taking the time to look for some on that part, much appreciated.

Much better outcome than the opposite extreme alternative; I can relate and will only encourage you in anticipating potential problems and 'doing it right'
I'm glad to know that I wouldn't be overdoing it by going back and making sure that everything is just the way it's supposed to be lol. It seems like a good bit of work but I'd much rather be safe than sorry.. Plus I do kind of thoroughly enjoy working on the bike lol.

The oil passage plug was actually still surprisingly snug for being able to leak oil like it was.

As for my somewhat flawed diagnostic reasoning: I had had the bike running for a few minutes on its side stand (after having cleaning off the engine) to see if the bike would leak at all with just the engine running and not moving. I revved the engine a little bit here and there but there wasn't any oil coming out. So, for the sake of my neighbors (that muzzy exhaust pipe is crazy loud), I shut off the engine and I dismissed the possibility of the bike leaking at low revs AND while it was not moving. :eek: But like you said, it simply must have leaked and pooled and then once I had stopped gravity took over.

As for the perspective of the pictures, yes the oil pressure switch is indeed below that hex bolt. Even though this isn't the case, I had thought that since the bike leans when it turns maybe the wind was able to push the oil in a really weird way when it was leaned over to one side.
 

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It seems like a good bit of work but I'd much rather be safe than sorry.. Plus I do kind of thoroughly enjoy working on the bike lol.
I find it ... therapeutic ... much like gardening to some... that and that's how you get to really know your bike, IMO.
Glad the ending's a happy one!
 
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