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Don't just put anything into your off-road vehicle

Motor oil is just motor oil, right? Wrong! Your ATV or UTV requires motor oil just like any other motorized vehicle, but any oil just doesn’t cut it. These machines run at higher RPM, work harder and run harder than your truck does, so specialized oils are definitely called for. What separates motor sports oil from common stuff off the shelf? It’s all about what goes into the blend. Let’s take a look at five of the best motor oil products for your off-road fun.

Check out the article here: Five Best Motor Oil Options for ATVs and UTVs - ATV.com
 

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Check out the 4 oil companies willing to sponsor this article, and OEM.....

What oil to use is such a loaded question, everyone will tell you something different. In reality the most important part is just changing the oil at all, rather than what brand or blend you use. And of course for us Honda guys it has to meet JASO MA requirements for our wet clutches.


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I got to throw my 2 cents in , personally I have been using oil that doesn't carry the recommended certification letters on the bottle in my atv's and every thing else I own for about 30 years now and have not had any failures from bad oil , Rotella ( regular conventional ) oil , it doesn't carry the cert. letters for my Honda "wet clutch " -------- many years ago now I was a service manager for an equipment rental store with 3 locations , we had every type of equipment big and small and a lot of them , we were told that we had more equipment than any other store between Houston and Atlanta , all kinds of different oil requirements , a nightmare to have all the different oil and to be assured the hired help put the right oil in the right place , we had a Shell rep come in and evaluate our needs , he told me the way the certification regulation bureaucracy works , the company that blends and packages the oil is the one required to pay for the testing to achieve the cert . , that company may already have an oil that meets a certain spec so why would they pay to have another one of their oils certified , just because an oil doesn't carry a cert doesn't mean it wouldn't meet the specs. of that cert. , it just means that it wasn't tested ------------I agree with Mac , changing the oil regularly is important
 

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I run Rotella Synthetic in my Hondas, it does meet the specs. This article is a fluff piece for rebranded oil.
 

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You can't have a forum without an oil thread! New to ATV's, but not to wet clutches. I'll never use any of the oils listed in the article. $$$$ I've been using Mobil 1 synthetic 15w-50 for years, and more recently Rotella T6 5w-40 synthetic because it's a little cheaper locally and slightly lower viscosity. Do I think I need synthetic? No, it just makes my motorcycles shift like butter and I like that. Otherwise, I'd use regular dino oil. I'll most likely use Rotella T6 on the Rancher too.

Ok...where's the oil filter thread? :devil
 

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Ok...where's the oil filter thread? :devil
Haha... we haven't had one of those in a while! Mature, kind & helpful are just a few words I could use to describe members here... I doubt any fist fights would ever break out over any silly discussions... critical analysis, when factual, flies very well here. <hint :)>
 

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You can't have a forum without an oil thread! New to ATV's, but not to wet clutches. I'll never use any of the oils listed in the article. $$$$ I've been using Mobil 1 synthetic 15w-50 for years, and more recently Rotella T6 5w-40 synthetic because it's a little cheaper locally and slightly lower viscosity. Do I think I need synthetic? No, it just makes my motorcycles shift like butter and I like that. Otherwise, I'd use regular dino oil. I'll most likely use Rotella T6 on the Rancher too.

Ok...where's the oil filter thread? :devil
OEM only of course lol
 

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I fully agree any oil that will work properly to spec's needed, as long as you change it when needed, it will all work fine
advantages some HIGHER end oils will have is SLIGHT lower temps and smoother shifting
but there not magic by any means,
keep in mind, OLD used up, HIGH dollar oil doesn;t work as good and NEW cheap oil!

but I'm a sucker I guess, I like running higher end oil and changing it often to boot
price of oil as to a new motor??
your money, your call!
 

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I use the cheapest wet clutch oil I can find, to me, as long as the grade is correct cheap oil is as good as branded oil. As everyone has already stated, stick to the oil change schedule and you can't go far wrong.
 

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my .02's worth. can an atv/motorcycle run with reg auto oil ?, sure !!. will it be hard on your clutches ?, DANG RIGHT !. reg auto oil has friction mod's in it, where is, atv/motorcycle oils do not !!. sure they run at diff rpms ?, but this does not matter when it comes to the clutches !!!. those friction disk CAN NOT have any friction mod's on them !?!. sooner or later, YOU WILL BURN YOUR CLUTCHES UP !. other than reg oil changes ?..yes..i will agree on this !!. but i will stick by the book, and use the CORRECT oil in all my atvs/motorcycles, one main reason : HONDA DOES NOT SELL PARTS OFF THE SHELF FOR A COUPLE OF MY RIDES, my '85 vf700c is on the parts endangerment list as it is ?, same goes for my '89 trx350D foreman, both of these toys are very old, and i would like to keep them running for as long as i can :).
 
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my .02's worth. can an atv/motorcycle run with reg auto oil ?, sure !!. will it be hard on your clutches ?, DANG RIGHT !. reg auto oil has friction mod's in it, where is, atv/motorcycle oils do not !!. sure they run at diff rpms ?, but this does not matter when it comes to the clutches !!!. those friction disk CAN NOT have any friction mod's on them !?!. sooner or later, YOU WILL BURN YOUR CLUTCHES UP !. other than reg oil changes ?..yes..i will agree on this !!. but i will stick by the book, and use the CORRECT oil in all my atvs/motorcycles, one main reason : HONDA DOES NOT SELL PARTS OFF THE SHELF FOR A COUPLE OF MY RIDES, my '85 vf700c is on the parts endangerment list as it is ?, same goes for my '89 trx350D foreman, both of these toys are very old, and i would like to keep them running for as long as i can :).
Just to throw a little gas on the fire (no arguing, just having fun), I know a guy in California that has a rare and expensive 1994 Honda RC45. He runs 0w20 synthetic in it and has tens of thousands of miles on it. He's meticulous, keeps notes, does his own maintenance, sends his oil off to be tested regularly, etc. etc. etc. The RC45 (RVF750R) only put out 120 HP off the showroom floor back in 1994, but with the HRC kit in it, the thing makes over 190 HP! Larry has the HRC go fast parts kit. :eek
 

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I've got to change the oil in my 2016 Honda Rancher this week. I'm going to try the Rotella. I've seen people mention it or swear by it so many times, I've got to try it. I bet I know what will happen too! I'll turn the key, hit the starter, and it will go reepbiteereepbiteereep and then thump thump thump happily for another 600 miles, like it always does.

BTW, I am a believer in synthetics.
 

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my .02's worth. can an atv/motorcycle run with reg auto oil ?, sure !!. will it be hard on your clutches ?, DANG RIGHT !. reg auto oil has friction mod's in it, where is, atv/motorcycle oils do not !!. sure they run at diff rpms ?, but this does not matter when it comes to the clutches !!!. those friction disk CAN NOT have any friction mod's on them !?!. sooner or later, YOU WILL BURN YOUR CLUTCHES UP !. other than reg oil changes ?..yes..i will agree on this !!. but i will stick by the book, and use the CORRECT oil in all my atvs/motorcycles, one main reason : HONDA DOES NOT SELL PARTS OFF THE SHELF FOR A COUPLE OF MY RIDES, my '85 vf700c is on the parts endangerment list as it is ?, same goes for my '89 trx350D foreman, both of these toys are very old, and i would like to keep them running for as long as i can :).
Just to throw a little gas on the fire (no arguing, just having fun), I know a guy in California that has a rare and expensive 1994 Honda RC45. He runs 0w20 synthetic in it and has tens of thousands of miles on it. He's meticulous, keeps notes, does his own maintenance, sends his oil off to be tested regularly, etc. etc. etc. The RC45 (RVF750R) only put out 120 HP off the showroom floor back in 1994, but with the HRC kit in it, the thing makes over 190 HP! Larry has the HRC go fast parts kit. :eek
please keep in mind, it's not about if it's synthetic or not ?, IT'S THE FRICTION MODIFIERS THEY PUT IN THE OIL !. car oils have to have these modifiers in it for them to run longer and cooler, where is, atvs, motorcycles that have a WET CLUTCH ?, should not have these modifiers in the oil !. what will happen is the friction disk will glaze over, then begin to slip, as most on here either have found this out ? ( some come here for this very reason ), or they will have this problem !. will it happen in a day ?, a week ?, a month ?..WHO KNOWS ??!..but it will happen sooner or later...I'LL BANK ON IT !.
 

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please keep in mind, it's not about if it's synthetic or not ?, IT'S THE FRICTION MODIFIERS THEY PUT IN THE OIL !. car oils have to have these modifiers in it for them to run longer and cooler, where is, atvs, motorcycles that have a WET CLUTCH ?, should not have these modifiers in the oil !. what will happen is the friction disk will glaze over, then begin to slip, as most on here either have found this out ? ( some come here for this very reason ), or they will have this problem !. will it happen in a day ?, a week ?, a month ?..WHO KNOWS ??!..but it will happen sooner or later...I'LL BANK ON IT !.
Mobil 1 0w-20 does have the friction modifiers. His point of view is to make sure the clutch itself is in good condition, adjusted, full strength springs, etc. He contends that when the clutch starts slipping it is due to those issues, not the oil. The oil just magnifies the issue with the clutch itself. I'm not advocating it for an ATV. I know nothing about automatic clutches. I'm not even advocating it for motorcycles. However, he's proven that with proper clutch maintenance, even a 190 HP motorcyle with a really tall 1st gear won't burn up a clutch that has been properly taken care of while using 0w-20 with friction modifiers. We are talking years and tens of thousands of miles, not weeks or months. The difference between him and the rest of the world is that he actually maintains all of his bike, including the clutch. Everyone else ignores the clutch until something starts acting funny. ;)
 

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please keep in mind, it's not about if it's synthetic or not ?, IT'S THE FRICTION MODIFIERS THEY PUT IN THE OIL !. car oils have to have these modifiers in it for them to run longer and cooler, where is, atvs, motorcycles that have a WET CLUTCH ?, should not have these modifiers in the oil !. what will happen is the friction disk will glaze over, then begin to slip, as most on here either have found this out ? ( some come here for this very reason ), or they will have this problem !. will it happen in a day ?, a week ?, a month ?..WHO KNOWS ??!..but it will happen sooner or later...I'LL BANK ON IT !.
Mobil 1 0w-20 does have the friction modifiers. His point of view is to make sure the clutch itself is in good condition, adjusted, full strength springs, etc. He contends that when the clutch starts slipping it is due to those issues, not the oil. The oil just magnifies the issue with the clutch itself. I'm not advocating it for an ATV. I know nothing about automatic clutches. I'm not even advocating it for motorcycles. However, he's proven that with proper clutch maintenance, even a 190 HP motorcycle with a really tall 1st gear won't burn up a clutch that has been properly taken care of while using 0w-20 with friction modifiers. We are talking years and tens of thousands of miles, not weeks or months. The difference between him and the rest of the world is that he actually maintains all of his bike, including the clutch. Everyone else ignores the clutch until something starts acting funny. ;)
well I wouldn't say he is PROOF< its OK to use
what your seeing is a guy that is getting lucky, more than its NOT a big deal
hundreds of million folks buy lottery tickets, some win, but know what?? Most loose!

a true comparison would be if he ran two like bikes and ran one with RIGHT oil and one without, and even that would be a IFFY at best result, the game in proof is, you need to have many LIKE units running and see how they all end up!

I have known guys that get 150k plus out of motors and never once ever changed there oil period, and motors still running when they sold them?/
does that mean we don't need to change oil?
HECK no, means they were super lucky, and or???

same one guy I know had done this on 5-8 different vehicles I know he has had, so, not just a one time lucky deal

but I sure wouldn;t gamble with MY money , to NOT change the oil or use the right oil
I mean what's the point, cannot your buddy do the same maintenance he does with correct oil?
does correct oil cost that much more??
WHY gamble is my point!!

I am sure we all do silly things, in life at times, so,NOT bashing here, just saying my views
I TRY my best to do best I can to NOT have issue's?
 

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This thread is nearly as good as caliber comparison threads on shooting/hunting forums haha..
We all have our own opinions and only a few of us share those opinions, I'm sure as hell we'll see on here soon enough where others had the wrong opinions when it came to all choice though.
 
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I know if you put non JASO-MA oil in a Rincon it doesn't even move, so I guess they aren't lying about oil requirements when it comes to some models. ATV oil is dirt cheap, so even in the ATV's I really don't care about I see no real need to try and run automotive oil. I mean c'mon, what's 3L of oil cost $20???
 

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well I wouldn't say he is PROOF< its OK to use
what your seeing is a guy that is getting lucky, more than its NOT a big deal
hundreds of million folks buy lottery tickets, some win, but know what?? Most loose!
He isn't the norm, but he won't have an oil related clutch failure. He does preventative maintenance on the clutch, making sure the springs are strong, checks the disks and refreshes them when needed, and more on a regular basis. His hobby... no, his passion is maintaining the bike, making custom parts for it, etc. I know that pretty much nobody else does that, so they will eventually get clutch slippage as the bike gets old and the parts get weak, and disks get some glaze from a hard launch or two. However, someone willing to do what he does could ride a manual clutch bike for decades with that oil. I just wanted to jump into the oil thread with both feet. :devil

I'll still run my synthetic automotive oil in my motorcycles, but I won't run the 0w-20 because I don't plan to ever do any internal maintenance on my clutches. I don't know what I'll run in the Rancher, but it won't be overpriced Honkawiyamazuki oil. I think Rotella T6 5w40 will do fine since it's JASO-MA. It's just a matter of whether I want to go regular or synthetic.
 

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I know if you put non JASO-MA oil in a Rincon it doesn't even move, so I guess they aren't lying about oil requirements when it comes to some models. ATV oil is dirt cheap, so even in the ATV's I really don't care about I see no real need to try and run automotive oil. I mean c'mon, what's 3L of oil cost $20???
It's not so much the price on its own. It's also the inconvenience of having to drive 50 miles to buy oil and then pay above MSRP. I could go farther and get it at MSRP. I drove 170 miles to get the Rancher because the local shops believe it's better to sell one at or above MSRP every now and then than to sell 20 a week at a good discount. Honda oil is just rebranded from whoever has the contract at the time anyway. A lot of motorcycle guys cross reference and buy Wix, NAPA (Wix), Bosch etc. oil filters at similar prices that they can get Honda filters online just because it's more convenient to pick one up on the way home from work. Some guys I know buy Yamaha filters because they have a local dealer and the filters are cheaper even though they are probably made on the same assembly line. Same concept.
 
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