Best Oil for Harley Davidson Motorcycles

Harley Davidson motorcycles are known for their powerful engines, which, of course, need quality maintenance and good accessories. Natural engine wear is inevitable when riding a motorcycle, especially under high loads. That’s why manufacturers strive to develop an optimal oil formula that will reduce wear. And they are quite good at it. Such oils as AMSOIL and Spectro Heavy Duty Platinum have a composition, which practically reduces engine wear at high loads to zero. AMSOIL oil takes is leading here and, according to many riders, is the best solution for Harley Davidson bikes.

Motorcycle oils, as a rule, are all-season and versatile products, suitable for different applications. Most often, such oils can be used for both a bike motor and transmission. The high viscosity of the substance eliminates strong friction, as its density is maintained even at 212F.

Oil change for Harley bikes is usually needed every 8,000 miles, although, there are oils that can be changed much less frequently. If the oil is fully synthetic and contains technological additives, its efficiency is maintained as long as possible.

List of Top-Rated Best Oil for Harley Davidson Motorcycles

KIT 20W50 4QTS
Spectro Heavy Duty Platinum 20w50 Case of 12x1qtSpectro Heavy Duty Platinum
20w50 Case of 12x1qt
Silkolene V-Twin 20W50 Engine Oil 4L 600989842Silkolene V-Twin 20W50
Engine Oil 4L 600989842
Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Diesel Engine OilShell Rotella T6 5W-40
Diesel Engine Oil
Fully Synthetic
Castrol 55938 2240 7176 1L Power 1 Racing 2TCastrol 55938 2240 7176 1L
Power 1 Racing 2T
Fully Synthetic

Reviews of the Best Oil for Harley Davidson Motorcycles

AMSOIL VTWIN Oil Change KIT 20W50 Full Synthetic Motorcycle Oil 4QTS + Filter

AMSOIL VTWIN Oil Change KIT 20W50 Full Synthetic Motorcycle Oil 4QTS + Filter

AMSOIL engine oil is unique in its composition, as it’s made on a synthetic basis with a special set of additives that reduce wear. The oil shows stability at high temperatures, and also has antioxidative properties, which also contribute to reduced wear and corrosion. Numerous studies show that even after several thousand miles, the inside of the engine remains clean and looks new. The manufacturer claims that oil has a zero wear rate.

It should be noted that this oil is versatile and can be used not only in engines but also in transmissions. The substation is compatible with other oils, although mixing slightly reduces the efficiency of this composition. The product should not be used instead of API GL-4 or GL-5, as it will lead to fast wear. It is recommended to change the oil once a year, which does not require much time.

The oil is versatile in terms of weather conditions and can be used in winter or summer. The minimum temperature for this lubricant is 5F and the viscosity index is 16.3 units at 212 degrees. Thus, the oil perfectly uses its protective properties, even in hot summers when it’s up to 104F outside.


  • Synthetic multipurpose oil for many bikes
  • Temperature-resistant structure
  • Unique additives to reduce wear
  • Special antioxidant properties


  • Manufacturer: AMSOIL
  • Oil type: synthetic
  • Marking: 20W-50
  • Capacity: 4 x 946 ml
  • Weight: 9.33 pounds

The AMSOIL product is versatile and can be used in any season. It does not require frequent changes and meets all quality standards, maintaining the required viscosity at all temperatures. A set of special additives provides reliable protection for the engine. If necessary, the substance can be used as gear oil since it’s thick enough and highly resistant to heat and friction. The set includes 4 946-ml gallons of 20W-50 oil and a special oil filter, which is used in Harley motorcycles and protects the engine from dirt microparticles. 

How much oil will it take for the Dyno 2008 model?

A standard 946-ml gallon of oil will be required to change the oil in the engine. Since it is recommended to change the oil every 8,000 thousand miles, it makes sense to purchase a set of gallons at once.

Spectro Heavy Duty Platinum Full Synthetic 20w50 Case of 12x1qt

Spectro Heavy Duty Platinum Full Synthetic 20w50 Case of 12x1qt

Spectro Heavy Duty Platinum Full Synthetic 20W-50 Oil is designed specifically for heavy loads on diesel engines. The oil is ideal for Harley Davidson motorcycles. Based on a synthetic base, it features several additives, which minimize engine wear. The substation retains the right fluidity at low temperatures, and when heated, the oil has stable density, protecting the insides of the engine. The manufacturer guarantees reliable protection of the engine with minimum wear.

As for temperature characteristics, they allow the engine to work productively and safely in any season. The 20W-50 oil retains its properties at temperatures down to -4F and can start the engine at 5F. The viscosity index at 212 degrees is 19.6. This means that the oil can be safely used at high temperatures above 104 degrees. Intense loads and friction will not wear out the engine, as the oil creates a tight protective later. The ignition temperature is 446F but the oil solidifies at -9.4F.

This oil can be changed every 10,000 miles, although this depends on the engine condition and loads. This product has excellent antioxidizing properties at high temperatures, keeping the engine safe from corrosion, and maintaining its performance. Zinc and phosphorus are used in large quantities as additives to provide complete protection against wear.


  • Maximum protection against wear 
  • High density at high temperatures
  • All-season oil
  • High fluidity at all temperatures
  • Long replacement interval


  • Manufacturer: Spectro oils
  • Oil type: synthetic
  • Marking: 20W50
  • Capacity: 12 x 946 ml
  • Viscosity: 19.6

The Spectro Oils 20W-50 is a stable substance that has no precipitate and reliably protects the engine at the most intense loads. It can be used for various motorcycles that run in a moderate climate. The Spectro 20W-50 maintains its viscosity at a wide temperature range, which means your engine will be protected under all circumstances. The 20W-50 is available in a standard black 946 ml gallon.

What is ZDDP?

ZDDP is a special agent, based on zinc, used as a productive additive in engine oils. It provides improved oil stability and better preserves the engine inside, helping to reduce engine wear under the most extreme loads.

Silkolene V-Twin 20W50 Engine Oil 4L 600989842

Silkolene V-Twin 20W50 Engine Oil 4L 600989842

Silkolene 20W-50 engine oil is a mineral semi-synthetic substance, which provides effective protection as a set of special additives. The oil has advanced features that indicate its quality and effectiveness in protecting the engine inside. This product has excellent detergent properties, keeping the engine clean at all times. With Silkolene 20W50, the engine retains its youthfulness and is virtually wear-free.

Physical qualities of the substance are among the most productive. The 20W-50 is all-season oil, which can be used both at low and high ambient temperatures. The lubricant keeps its fluidity in the cold, and when heated, it has a consistently high viscosity. The viscosity index at 212F is 18 units. Solidification occurs only at -13F, so in case of severe cold, the engine will start with no problems, and the oil will be pumped throughout the system uniformly. When extremely heated, the substance does not become excessively fluid, enveloping the engine, and providing protection against heavy friction. The substance can only ignite at 392F.

Silkolene V-Twin 20W50 Engine Oil is designed specifically for 4-stroke motorcycle engines and, therefore, suitable for all Harley bikes. Though being very efficient, the oil may require more frequent replacement in comparison with purely synthetic oils. Therefore, it makes sense to purchase oil in bulk.


  • Wide temperature range
  • Thermal antioxidation
  • Perfectly clean engine condition
  • Stable viscosity
  • Suitable for all Harleys


  • Manufacturer: Silkolene
  • Oil type: mineral
  • Labeling: 20W-50
  • Capacity: 4 liters
  • Weight: 8.2 pounds

Silkolene motor oil is the right choice for street motorcycles that are exposed to adequate loads in various weather conditions. This product provides 100% V-Twin engine protection and is sold in branded 4-l black canisters.

Which oil is better to use synthetic or semi-synthetic?

Purely synthetic oils have improved cold starting characteristics. Otherwise, they are no better than other types of oil. Mineral oils provide excellent engine protection. Their disadvantage is a slightly more frequent change but it’s not a big problem. Semi-synthetic oils are the right choice for older engines that need special protection. On the other hand, if the motorcycle needs to be started frequently at extremely low temperatures, then pure synthetic oils should still be a priority.

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Engine Oil (1-Gallon, Single Pack, New Packaging)

Shell Rotella T6 Full Synthetic 5W-40 Diesel Engine Oil (1-Gallon, Single Pack, New Packaging)

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Diesel Engine Oil is widely used not only in motorcycles and cars but also in industry and agriculture. This oil has a number of important features that may be crucial when using oil in diesel Harleys. According to the manufacturer, the oil allows for considerable fuel economy, plus, it has high fluidity and maintains stability at high temperatures.

Shell Rotella T6 synthetic oil is a fully synthetic oil with a set of additives that help keep the engine clean and reduce its natural wear. The substance allows starting the engine at the lowest temperatures. In this case, the engine will start at the minimum mark of -22F. The oil is an all-season version, which maintains viscosity when heated. The viscosity index at standard measuring conditions is within 12.5 units.

Moreover, this oil is fully suitable for use with exhaust gas recirculation systems. It reduces fuel consumption, has excellent stability at different temperatures, and protects engines with high rpm. Rotella produced high-quality products that have been tested not only during the production phase but also by many mechanics and regular drivers around the world.


  • Exceptional engine protection
  • High fuel economy
  • Advanced exhaust system support
  • Substance stability at high temperatures


  • Manufacturer: Rotella
  • Oil type: fully synthetic
  • Labeling: 5W-40
  • Capacity: 3.785 liters
  • Weight: 8 pounds

Shell Rotella T6 5W-40 Diesel Engine Oil can be considered the perfect oil for motorcycles with powerful diesel engines that are used throughout the winter season. Although it’s all-season oil, it shows the best performance in cold weather conditions. This high-quality product comes in blue branded 3.8-l gallons. The oil provides full protection of the engine interior, reduces friction, removes combustion/friction residues, and literally “washes” the engine from the inside.

How to reduce the fuel consumption of a motorcycle?

Using the Rotella oil alone can reduce fuel consumption by about 2%. In some cases, however, it may be difficult to notice. To ensure fuel economy, install an exhaust gas recirculation system and use a special tuner. Proper tuning equipment, together with the above-mentioned system and oil, will provide more tangible results in terms of fuel economy.

Castrol 55938 2240 7176 1L Power 1 Racing 2T

Castrol 55938 2240 7176 1L Power 1 Racing 2T

Castrol Power 1 Racing 2T is fully synthetic engine oil for sports bikes with 2-stroke engines. It has high stability and contributes to the productive work of the engine. The oil not only protects the internal environment but also provides increased engine power. The substance was designed at a German factory for motorcycle engines that are subjected to extreme loads. Also, the oil is optimal in tuned engines, which make the motorcycle run ragged. The high-density oil provides the right viscosity at extreme temperatures and prolongs engine service life. According to the manufacturer, the substance meets the following specifications: API TC; JASO FD; ISO EGD.

Castrol Power 1 Racing 2T provides increased acceleration and torque. The engine can easily “get rid” of particles generated by the combustion and friction processes. This oil provides complete protection for racing bikes, although, many riders prefer to use it for everyday city riding.


  • Maximum acceleration under heavy loads
  • Suitable for tuned 2-stroke engines
  • Keeps the engine clean and prolongs its life
  • Designed specifically for racing motorcycles


  • Manufacturer: Castrol
  • Oil type: fully synthetic
  • Capacity: 1 liter
  • Weight: 1.32 pounds

Castrol 2T Racing Oil has a relatively low cost and lets the engine fully move. It’s produced in gold 1-l gallons. The oil is designed solely for 2-stroke engines on any European, American, or Japanese motorcycles. It keeps the right density at high temperatures, which is a must for extreme loads during races.  Castrol 2T will be the optimal solution to protect the engine at extreme loads both in urban and off-road conditions.

Is Castrol 2T all-season oil?

Castrol 2T is designed specifically for high loads during racing. It’s not all-season oil, however, it must be available in different versions with certain markings. Thus, you have to check with your retailer.


To summarize, it’s necessary to note AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic V-Twin Motorcycle Oil, which is the leader among motorcycle oils. This universal engine/transmission oil is made of synthetic components, completely protects the engine interior, keeping it safe in the primary condition. Such oil does not require frequent replacement, unlike semi-synthetic and mineral oils.

Particular attention should be paid to Castrol Power 1 Racing 2T, designed specifically for racing motorcycles. If you have a tuned engine, or your bike is constantly subjected to extreme loads, this oil will be the most optimal solution. As for universal oils, Shell Rotella T6 is a practical option for diesel engines with high rpm, including some Harleys. Wide application of the oil indicates its high quality.

Spectro and Silkolene oils are great options for many motorcycles with 4-stroke engines. The first one is a zinc-based for complete engine wear protection, and the second one is a mineral version with excellent viscosity indexes. Also, don’t forget that 20W-50 oils are the most optimal averaged all-season options, with temperature limits from 5F to 113F.

Frequently asked question

What oil does Harley Davidson recommend?

As for the recommendations from Harley Davidson, it all comes down to 20W-50 oils. Of course, Harley Davidson recommends using its original branded oil, but nevertheless, there are a number of other oils that are recommended for use with any branded motorcycle. These are AMSOIL and Spectro oils, which have the main advantage, namely a unique synthetic composition that minimizes Harley engine wear. 

Another recommended options for V-Twin engines are Silkolene oils. These are mineral oils that provide increased engine protection against oxidative processes and maintain impressive stability during heating and cooling.

What is the best oil for motorcycles?

Powerful motorcycles that are equipped with 4 or 2-stroke engines need a stable oil with high viscosity, maintained at all temperatures. Therefore, the best oil for motorcycles is 20W-50 oil. The oil completely protects the engine inside at high temperatures and allows you to start your bike at temperatures down to 5F. It’s an all-season oil that keeps the engine in its initial state for as long as possible – AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic V-Twin Motorcycle Oil remains the leader in this niche.

What is the best oil for Harley V twin?

The best oil for Harley Davidson V-Twin engines is Silkolene V-Twin 20W-50. This mineral oil contains extra additives, aimed at providing the necessary viscosity and preserving the interior of the engine. The oil has high-temperature stability and effectively “washes” the engine from the inside. As this oil is mineralized, it requires more frequent changes and monitoring. For this reason, many consider pure synthetic oils to be the best.

The best synthetic oil for V-Twin motorcycles is certainly AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic V-Twin Motorcycle Oil. It’s the most stable oil, which protects the engine at all loads, providing virtually zero wear. For this reason, it’s considered the best oil for engines in modern motorcycles.

Is Amsoil oil better than Harley oil?

If you consider the original Harley oil, it has quite good features and keeps the engine at medium loads. AMSOIL oils are suitable for heavier loads and tuned engines. The main advantage of AMSOIL 20W-50 Synthetic V-Twin Motorcycle Oil is its viscosity, with the 16.3 viscosity index at 212F, which provides a high density of the substance when heated. Harley oil is not as good in this respect, thus, it’s not that effective.              
AMSOIL oil provides minimal engine wear, as it fully and evenly covers all the interior of the engine, giving maximum protection. The same applies to the transmission. Therefore, we can undoubtedly say that AMSOIL oil is much better than the original Harley oil in terms of viscosity and bike engine protection.

Editorial Staff

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